Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Make that Motter of the Bowling Green Hot Rods

And right after posting of Taylor Motter's Appalachian League honor, we learn he's been promoted to the playoff-bound Bowling Green Hot Rods.

Motter moves up and catcher Luke Bailey, whose been out since July 29 with a wrist injury, comes off the disabled list. Outfielders Cody Rogers and Todd Glaesmann go on the injury shelf. Rogers has a wrist injury and Glaesmann a thumb issue.

Princeton's Motter on Appy League list

Princeton shortstop Taylor Motter has been named an Appalachian League end-of-season All-Star. He has a .323 average and a .436 on-base percentage through Tuesday with 37 runs scored and 23 RBIs in 46 games. Motter was a 17th-round draft pick this year from Coastal Carolina.

Vogt, Moore among Southern League All-Stars

Catcher Stephen Vogt and left-handed pitcher Matt Moore were Montgomery's two representatives on the Southern League's end-of-season All-Star team.

Both were promoted to Triple-A Durham in July.

C: Stephen Vogt, Montgomery; 1B: Paul Goldschmidt, Mobile; 2B: Tyler Kuhn, Birmingham; 3B: Ryan Wheeler, Mobile; SS: Tyler Pastornicky, Mississippi.
OF: Denis Phipps, Carolina; A.J. Pollock, Mobile; Alfredo Silverio, Chattanooga; Scott Van Slyke, Chattanooga.
DH: Ernesto Mejia, Mississippi; Utility: Tyler Kuhn, Birmingham; Hustler: Kevin Mattison, Jacksonville.
Right-handed starter: Nate Eovaldi, Chattanooga; Left-handed starter: Matt Moore, Montgomery; Relief pitcher: Rafael Dolis, Tennessee.

And, no, I don't know how Tyler Kuhn makes it as both the second baseman and utility guy. If I had known that was possible, I would have voted Paul Goldschmidt as my designated hitter, too.

Ranking the Rays ... Sale, Beckham, Hager

For Tuesday ...
1. Josh Sale, PRI: solo HR, 1b, walk, 2 runs, 2 RBIs
2. Tim Beckham, DUR: 2b, 2 1b's, 2 runs, picked off
3. Jake Hager, PRI: 4-for-5, RBI, picked off
4. Neil Schenk, MGM: 3 shutout innings, 1 hit, walk, 3 K's, HBP
5. Jay Buente, DUR: 3 shutout innings, 1 hit, 3 K's, HBP

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Linsky, Lyerly make move to Bowling Green

A June draftee and a 2010 pick have been promoted to low-Class A Bowling Green.

Reliever Lenny Linsky made his debut with the Hot Rods tonight in a 3-2 win over Great Lakes. Outfielder Craige Lyerly was promoted from Hudson Valley after the Renegades' 5-0 loss at Connecticut.

Linsky was a second-round pick (89th overall) this year from the University of Hawaii. He was 3-0 with a 1.46 ERA in 12 appearances with the Renegades.

Lyerly went in the 19th round last year from Catawba College. He finished with a .285 average in 50 games at Hudson Valley.

Tuesday: Mudcats 7, Biscuits 3

Eric Campbell hit a three-run home run to cap a four-run ninth inning that lifted the Carolina Mudcats to a 7-3 win over the Biscuits on Tuesday.

Biscuits reliever Marquis Fleming retired the first two batters in the ninth before issuing two walks. Didi Gregorius' single deflected off first baseman Henry Wrigley to bring in the go-ahead run.

Campbell followed with his 11th home run off reliever Zach Quate. Shawn O'Malley had three hits for Montgomery.

Tuesday's Rays roundup

Bulls 4, Gwinnett 3
Russ Canzler
singled home Tim Beckham with the go-ahead run in the eighth. Beckham had three hits, including a double, and scored twice. Dan Johnson singled twice and walked. Jay Buente tossed three innings of one-hit ball. Dane De La Rosa gave up a hit but faced the minimum over two innings.

Stone Crabs 8, Jupiter 3 (completion of July 7 suspended game)
Jake Jefferies
tripled and scored in the fifth. Charlotte led 6-0 when play was suspended in the second inning in July.

Jupiter 4, Stone Crabs 3 (Game 2)
Ty Morrison
had two hits and scored a run. Tyler Bortnick doubled, was plunked and scored. Adam Liberatore pitched two shutout innings.

Hot Rods 3, Great Lakes 2
Robi Estrada
had two RBIs and Steve Tinoco hit three singles and scored. Chris Rearick threw a perfect ninth for his 19th save and has a 1.38 ERA.

Connecticut 5, Renegades 0
Jeff Malm
doubled twice and singled. Matt Rice singled and was HBP'd. Leonardo Reginatto had the only other hit. Robert Dickmann threw two perfect innings.

Elizabethton 10, P-Rays 6
Taylor Motter
walked twice and scored twice. Josh Sale hit a solo homer, singled, walked twice and had two RBIs. Cameron Seitzer had three hits and a walk.

Tuesday's lineups

Tonight is Montgomery's final home game of the season.

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa 3b (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
John Matulia rf (left)
Kyeong Kang dh (left)
John Shelby lf
Isaias Velasquez cf
Craig Albernaz c
Frank De Los Santos lhp

Quintin Berry cf (left)
Didi Gregorius dh (left)
Eric Campbell 3b
Neftali Soto 1b
Yasmani Grandal c (switch)
Bill Rhinehart rf (left)
Cody Puckett lf
Jake Kahaulelio 2b
Miguel Rojas ss
Curtis Partch rhp

Liberatore, Yates also on AFL list

Charlotte pitchers Adam Liberatore and Kirby Yates round out Tampa Bay's contingent going to the Arizona Fall League.

(Looks like the rule limiting the number of players below Double-A has been rescinded.)

Miller picked by Pacific Coast League

Selma High's Jai Miller, owner of 30 home runs this year, has been named to the Pacific Coast League's end-of-season All-Star team. Miller is hitting .271 with 78 RBIs through Monday.

Hearing these 5 Rays for AFL

Hearing from several directions about five of the players headed to the Arizona Fall League. The two Biscuits on the list, one as recently as Sunday, have said they had heard nothing.

Shane Dyer
Marquis Fleming
Tim Beckham
Tyler Bortnick
Mikie Mahtook

1 piece of Tampa Bay's AFL party set

Tampa Bay's player contingent has yet to be announced, but there's one known Biscuit headed to the Arizona Fall League. Manager Billy Gardner will manage the Surprise Saguaros, who will be comprised of players from the Rays, Braves, Marlins, Royals and Rangers.

As far as players, late signee Mikie Mahtook, an outfielder from LSU, has said he's on the AFL list. Teams send four pitchers and three position players -- only one of whom can be below Double-A as of Aug. 1 -- along with one staffer.

Yep, Bulls to host 2012 Triple-A title game

The Durham Bulls will host next year's Triple-A championship game, the team announced today. The game will be Sept. 18, 2012.

Durham's Canzler wins IL most valuable player

Durham third baseman Russ Canzler has been named the International League's most valuable player, marking the fifth time in 14 years a Bull has won the award.

Canzler has a .312 average, 18 home runs and 79 RBIs through Monday. The 25-year-old, who is in his first Triple-A season, joins Dan Johnson (2010), Kevin Witt (2006), Toby Hall (2001) and Steve Cox (1999) on Durham's IL MVP list.

"It’s definitely a little overwhelming," Canzler said in a release. "It’s one of those things you don’t imagine happening for yourself. I was fortunate enough to play with a good group of guys the entire year and stay healthy and it’s a real tribute to this organization to have the league MVP for two years in a row."

Ranking the Rays ... Partridge, Romero, Cruz

For Monday ...
1. Jacob Partridge, HV: 6 1/3 shutout innings, 2 hits, 2 walks, 9 K's
2. Enny Romero, BWG: 6 2/3 shutout innings, 1 hit, 2 walks, HBP, 6 K's
3. Joe Cruz, CHA: 7 innings, 2 runs, 4 hits, walk, K
4. Chris Winder, HV: 3-for-5, 3 runs, 3 RBIs, HR, 3b in DH
5. Steve Hiscock, BWG: 2 1/3 perfect innings, 2 K's

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday: Mudcats 8, Biscuits 3

Pedro Villarreal retired Montgomery's first 17 hitters and took a no-hitter into the seventh inning of the Carolina Mudcats' 8-3 win Monday.

Neftali Soto hit his 30th home run of the season, a two-run shot in the seventh inning that made it 7-0. He also singled and scored in the sixth and ninth.

Villarreal (7-3), who threw a four-hit complete game against the Biscuits on Aug. 14, left after Cole Figueroa and Henry Wrigley recorded Montgomery's first hits in the seventh. The Biscuits totaled three singles.

Monday's Rays roundup

Gwinnett 2, Bulls 1
Leslie Anderson
singled twice and Russ Canzler singled and walked. Alex Torres gave up two runs over six innings with seven hits, four walks and seven strikeouts.

Stone Crabs 5, Fort Myers 2
Joe Cruz
tossed seven innings, allowing two runs on four hits and a walk. Mike Sheridan had four RBIs with a single, double and walk. Tyler Bortnick singled twice, walked and scored twice.

Hot Rods 10, Great Lakes 0
Enny Romero
and Steve Hiscock combined on a one-hitter. Romero worked 6 2/3 innings, allowing a two-out single in the sixth and two walks. Hiscock worked a perfect 2 1/3. Julio Cedeno had three singles, a walk, two RBIs and three runs scored. Cody Rogers doubled, walked twice and scored twice.

Brooklyn 3, Renegades 1 (Game 1)
Trevor Shull
worked four innings, allowing one run on two hits. Chris Winder homered in the second inning.

Renegades 7, Brooklyn 0 (Game 2)
Chris Winder
singled, tripled, knocked in two runs and scored twice. Jacob Partridge and Stayton Thomas combined on a three-hitter. Partridge went 6 1/3 innings, allowing two hits with two walks and nine strikeouts.

Elizabethton 6, P-Rays 5
Justin O'Conner
singled, homered, walked and had two RBIs. Joel Caminero had two singles and two RBIs. Drew Vettleson left after just one at-bat. (???)

Rearick, Riefenhauser on Midwest League team

Left-handed pitchers C.J. Riefenhauser and Chris Rearick were Bowling Green's representatives on the Midwest League's end-of-season All-Star team.

Rearick has been dominant as the Hot Rods' stopper. He is 7-2 with a 1.40 ERA and 18 saves. He ranks second in the league with a .159 average against and has allowed a league-low 7.45 runners per nine innings.

Riefenhauser was 6-5 with a 2.31 ERA in 18 games with the Hot Rods before a promotion to high-Class A Charlotte. He allowed 77 hits and struck out 99 in 101 1/3 innings.

Monday's lineups

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa 3b (left)
Henry Wrigley dh
John Matulia rf (left)
Greg Sexton 1b
John Shelby lf
Isaias Velasquez cf
Craig Albernaz c
Alex Colome rhp

Quintin Berry cf (left)
Didi Gregorius ss (left)
Cody Puckett 2b
Neftali Soto 1b
Yasmani Grandal c (switch)
Bill Rhinehart rf (left)
Eric Campbell dh
Josh Fellhauer lf (left)
Miguel Rojas 3b
Pedro Villarreal rhp

Might Bulls be in line to host Triple-A title game?

Durham has scheduled a news conference for Tuesday to announce "a special event" for the 2012 season, according to a team release. The International League president, various Durham city officials and a Bulls bigwig and player are expected to appear.

What might the "special event" be? It's not the 2012 Triple-A All-Star Game, which is scheduled to be in Buffalo.

Could it be the Triple-A championship game? It has been in Oklahoma City since 2006, but it's going to be in Albuquerque this year and is supposed to annually rotate to a different Triple-A market.

Lee, Bortnick on Florida State League All-Star team

Biscuits shortstop Hak-Ju Lee, who spent most of the season with the Charlotte Stone Crabs, has been named to the Florida State League's end-of-season All-Star team.

Crabs second baseman Tyler Bortnick was also picked.

Lee hit .317 in 96 games and remains third in the FSL batting race. Bortnick has a .423 on-base percentage to rank second, has a league-high 41 steals and has scored 88 times in 124 games.

Ridling, Santiago carry SL honors for week

Tennessee first baseman Rebel Ridling, who sports a 13-game hitting streak, and Birmingham left-hander Hector Santiago, who has a shutout streak, won the Southern League's player of the week awards today.

Ridling was 12-for-25 with 11 RBIs for the week ending Sunday and has a .311 average, 20 home runs and 78 RBIs this year. Santiago was 2-0 and didn't allow a run in 13 innings for the week. He's 7-5 with a 3.61 ERA in 14 starts for the Barons.

Ranking the Rays ... Torra, Riefenhauser, Rearick

For Sunday ...
1. Matt Torra, DUR: 6 shutout innings, 4 hits, no walks
2. C.J. Riefenhauser, CHA: 6 shutout innings, 3 hits, 2 walks
3. Chris Rearick, BWG: 2 perfect innings, 3 K's
4. Greg Sexton, MGM: solo HR, 2 1b's, walk, 3 runs
5. Brandon Guyer, DUR: 3-for-7, 3 runs, 3b, HR, steal in DH

Anyone care to debate Biscuits' MVP choice?

There was little discussion as to who deserved the Advertiser's eighth annual Biscuits most valuable player award. If you disagree with Matt Moore's selection, please explain yourself.

As far as today's notebook, read about Isaias Velasquez's throw and Greg Sexton's tag that ended Sunday's 4-3 win over Carolina. There's also info in there about both players' offense.

Sunday's Rays roundup

Bulls 4, Charlotte 3 (Game 1, 8)
Brandon Guyer
tripled and scored on a J.J. Furmaniak squeeze bunt to win it. Matt Moore had a book-rule quality start with six strikeouts, giving him a combined 200 K's this season. Rehabbing Justin Ruggiano hit a two-run home run in the sixth and walked.

Bulls 3, Charlotte 0 (Game 2)
Matt Torra
went six innings and combined with Rob Delaney on a five-hitter. Brandon Guyer homered, singled, stole and scored twice. Robinson Chirinos was 3-for-3.

Stone Crabs 7, Fort Myers 0
C.J. Riefenhauser
went six innings and combined with Adam Liberatore and Scott Shuman on a three-hitter. Riefenhauser gave up all three hits. Mike Sheridan doubled twice, walked and scored twice. Mark Thomas homered, walked and scored twice.

Hot Rods 2, Great Lakes 1 (10)
Victor Mateo
gave up one run in six innings and combined with Jimmy Patterson and Chris Rearick on a three-hitter. Rearick, ho-hum, tossed two perfect innings and improved to 7-2 with a 1.40 ERA. Kevin Kiermaier scored the winning run in balk-off fashion.

Elizabethton 8, P-Rays 2
Taylor Motter
and Justin O'Conner each homered and walked. O'Conner also singled. Ryan Brett walked twice and stole.

GCL Rays
Season ended Saturday. Finished 24-36.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Barnese shut down for season

Biscuits pitcher Nick Barnese won't make his final two scheduled starts of the season due to shoulder fatigue. Frank De Los Santos will start in Barnese's place Tuesday in Montgomery's home finale and in next week's season finale at Chattanooga.

"I'll try to get better and get ready for next year," Barnese said.

Barnese struggled in his last start Thursday, allowing seven runs in two innings, and finishes 6-8 with a 3.76 ERA in 24 starts. He said his shoulder wasn't in pain Thursday and described it as "more of a tired, fatigued feeling."

"It was something he could get through," manager Billy Gardner said, "but with just a couple of starts remaining, we decided to shut him down."

Sunday: Biscuits 4, Mudcats 3

The Biscuits survived a Carolina rally in the ninth inning to take a 4-3 victory over the Mudcats on Sunday at Riverwalk Stadium.

The Mudcats scored twice in the ninth inning but recorded the final out after a sacrifice fly. Miguel Rojas scored on Bill Rhinehart's flyball, but Henry Rodriguez was out trying to advance to third.

Carolina started the ninth inning with three straight singles off Biscuits stopper Zach Quate.

Neftali Soto, who hit his 29th home run in the fifth inning, hit a flyball to the warning track in center field to bring in the first run and bring up Rhinehart for his sacrifice fly. Rodriguez safely reached third but overslid the bag and appeared to injure an ankle. He was helped from the field.

Biscuits starter Shane Dyer gave up one run over 6 1/3 innings and third baseman Greg Sexton scored three times. He homered, singled and walked.

Moore records 200th strikeout

Durham pitcher Matt Moore, in the fifth inning in the opening game of a doubleheader with the Charlotte Knights today, recorded his 200th strikeout of the season. He had 131 with the Biscuits, entered today with 63 for the Bulls and just picked up his sixth of the day.

Moore is the only Tampa Bay minor leaguer to reach 200. He did it last season with the high-Class A Charlotte Stone Crabs and finished with 208.

Sunday's lineups

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
John Matulia rf (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
Kyeong Kang lf (left)
Greg Sexton 3b
Matt Sweeney dh (left)
Isaias Velasquez cf
David Wendt c
Shane Dyer rhp

Quintin Berry cf (left)
Miguel Rojas 2b
Henry Rodriguez 3b (switch)
Neftali Soto dh
Bill Rhinehart rf (left)
Eric Campbell 1b
Josh Fellhauer lf (left)
Kevin Coddington c
Didi Gregorius ss (left)
Justin Lehr rhp

Ranking the Rays ... Suero, O'Malley, Archer

For Saturday ...
1. Eliazer Suero, BWG: 5 shutout innings, 2 hits, 3 walks
2. Shawn O'Malley, MGM: 2 spectacular defensive plays in 9th, walk
3. Chris Archer, DUR: 6 innings, 1 run, 3 hits, 5 walks, 6 K's
4. Ryan Brett, PRI: 2 2b's, RBI, run
5. Deivis Mavarez, CHA: 3 shutout innings, 3 hits, 1 walk

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Saturday's Rays roundup

Bulls 3, Charlotte 2
Chris Archer
gave up one run in six innings to win his Durham debut. He had three hits allowed, five walks and six strikeouts. Matt Carson doubled twice, RBI'd and scored.

Fort Myers 3, Stone Crabs 0 (Game 1)
Mike Sheridan
and rehabbing Jose Lobaton each had two hits. Charlotte had just five. One of Sheridan's was a double. Albert Suarez gave up two earned runs in 5 1/3 innings.

Fort Myers 6, Stone Crabs 1 (Game 2)
Matt Hall
doubled, walked twice and scored. Omar Luna tripled and walked. Charlotte had just five hits. Starter Alex Koronis lasted just two innings. Deivis Mavarez tossed three shutout innings of relief.

Great Lakes 2, Hot Rods 1
Nick Schwaner
homered in the sixth for one of Bowling Green's six hits. Julio Cedeno singled and walked. Eliazer Suero threw five shutout innings with two hits and three walks.

Brooklyn at Renegades
Hurricaned out. Doubleheader Monday.

Bristol 4, P-Rays 3
Deshun Dixon
singled, doubled and threw out a runner at home. Ryan Brett doubled twice. Eduar Quinonez allowed one run in 5 2/3 innings.

GCL Rays 3, Orioles 0
Blake Snell
threw two perfect innings for the win. He and four others combined on a six-hitter. Brandon Martin singled twice, stole twice and was plunked. Edward Dorville singled once, stole twice and was plunked. Johnny Eierman singled twice and was hit by a pitch.

Saturday: Biscuits 5, Mudcats 4

Shawn O'Malley made a leaping catch for the final out -- with the potential tying run in scoring position -- to finish the Biscuits' 5-4 win over the Carolina Mudcats on Saturday.

With a run already in, the Mudcats had a runner on second base when Didi Gregorius hit a liner up the middle. O'Malley leaped to his right and, parallel with the ground, made the game-ending catch.

Kyeong Kang hit a two-run single to give Montgomery the lead in a five-run sixth. Jim Paduch, after allowing the game's first three hitters to reach and score, worked six innings to win.

Auburn rallies, carries day at Riverwalk

In a scene that should seem familiar, Auburn rallied from a big deficit to beat Alabama 26-21 in Saturday's Iron Bowl promotion at Riverwalk Stadium. The Crimson Tide stormed to a 15-0 lead -- kind of like last year's football game where the Tide led 24-0 before Auburn won 28-27.

Matt Moore lands atop another list

The Biscuits took in $3,860 from their annual jersey auction Friday, with proceeds going to the local United Way.

$350: Matt Moore
$225: Marquis Fleming
$215: Henry Wrigley
$200: Kyeong Kang, Matt Bush
$180: Jim Paduch, John Shelby
$170: Tim Beckham
$155: Chris Archer, Hak-Ju Lee
$150: Shane Dyer, Greg Sexton, John Matulia, Shawn O'Malley
$135: Stephen Vogt
$125: Nick Barnese, Paul Phillips, Ozzie Timmons
$120: Matt Sweeney, Craig Albernaz, David Wendt, Cole Figueroa, Billy Gardner, Alex Colome

One Biscuit puts fans to Iron Bowl test

One of the Biscuits -- who shall remain nameless for what will be obvious reasons -- went into tonight's Alabama/Auburn Night with a devious plan. He said he would continually use two phrases and will see how many people call him on it. How would you react if someone said "War Tide" or "Roll Eagle"?

Saturday's lineups

It's Game 2 of Montgomery's final home series of the season and it's against the Carolina Mudcats. Biscuits outfielder Kyeong Kang is in at DH for the second straight game after being the DH just twice all season.

And, don't forget, it's also Alabama/Auburn Night -- officially named as such on the Biscuits' official schedule -- and fans from that other team are massing outside to show their superiority. They're pictured below and, this year, they mean business. Lest we forget, the Crimson Tide has a 4-3 series lead on the Tigers.

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa 3b (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
John Matulia rf (left)
Kyeong Kang dh (left)
John Shelby lf
Isaias Velasquez cf
Craig Albernaz c
Jim Paduch rhp

Quintin Berry cf (left)
Cody Puckett rf
Henry Rodriguez 3b (switch)
Neftali Soto 1b
Yasmani Grandal c (switch)
Bill Rhinehart dh (left)
Eric Campbell lf
Didi Gregorius ss (left)
Miguel Rojas 2b
Josh Ravin rhp

Iker Franco wins Mexican League title with Tigers

Former Biscuits catcher Iker Franco was part of a championship celebration Friday when the Quintana Roo Tigers won the Mexican League title.

The Tigers finished off a four-game championship series sweep with a 13-9 win over the Mexico City Red Devils.

Franco, an Original Biscuit in 2004, hit .274 with 12 RBIs in 16 playoff games. Former Biscuits coach Mako Oliveras was Mexico City's manager this year. The Red Devils were 63-40 in the regular season, while Quintana Roo was 62-43.

2011 draft pick joins Stone Crabs

Third baseman Riccio Torrez, a fourth-round draft pick in June from Arizona State, went on high-Class A Charlotte's roster today. The 21-year-old had a .224 average, two home runs and 12 RBIs with the GCL Rays.

System check

International League South

(74-57, first place, 3 GA)
RF Brandon Guyer has a .326 average, nine RBIs and seven runs scored in his last 10 games.
C Stephen Vogt is hitting .333 with 13 doubles and 18 RBIs in 23 games.
LHP Alex Torres is 5-0 with a 2.48 ERA in his last 10 starts.
3B Daniel Mayora has a .280 average.

Florida State League South

(31-28, third place, 7 GB)
LHP Josh Satow has a 2.26 ERA in 43 appearances.
RHP Scott Shuman hasn't given up a hit in his last three outings, covering six innings.
C Mark Thomas has a .239 average and 12 home runs.

Midwest League Eastern

(32-28, tied for fourth, 9 GB)
LHP Chris Rearick has a 1.43 ERA and has given up 42 hits in 75.1 innings.
RHP Victor Mateo has an 0.50 ERA in 18 August innings. He's 12-5.

New York-Penn League McNamara

(32-35, third place, 10 GB)
LHP Ryan Carpenter, with three no-hit innings Friday, has an 0.92 ERA in 19.2 innings.
LHP Justin Woodall has a 2.42 ERA in 17 appearances.

Appalachian League East

(30-34, third place, 8 GB)
LHP Matt Spann, with six shutout innings Wednesday, is 4-0 with a 2.61 ERA.
C Justin O'Conner has 11 RBIs in his last seven games.

Gulf Coast League South

(23-36, fourth place, 15 GB)
LHP Shawn Smith has allowed one hit in his last 5.2 innings.
1B John Alexander is hitting .319 in 11 games.

Those who strayed from the Rays

LF Delmon Young is hitting .313 in 11 games since being traded to the Detroit Tigers.
LHP Chris Seddon is 8-6 with a 6.41 ERA for Triple-A Tacoma (Mariners).
1B Rhyne Hughes is hitting .232 at Triple-A Norfolk (Orioles).
RHP Brian Stokes has a 7.11 ERA in nine games with Triple-A Reno (Diamondbacks).
1B Matt Fields has a .284 average, 16 home runs and 42 RBIs in 49 games with independent Southern Illinois.
RHP Chris Flinn has signed with independent Long Island.

Ranking the Rays ... O'Malley, Harris, Rogers

For a football Friday ...
1. Shawn O'Malley, MGM: 2b, 2 1b's, walk, RBI, 3 runs, 3 steals
2. James Harris, GCL: 1b, walk, 2 HBPs, 2 steals, 2 runs
3. Cody Rogers, BWG: 2b, 3 walks, 2 RBIs
4. Henry Wrigley, MGM: 3-run HR, 4 RBIs, 2 runs, walk, 2 1b's
5. Ryan Carpenter, HV: 3 no-hit innings, 1 walk

Friday's Rays roundup

Charlotte 10, Bulls 4
Seven Bulls reached base twice and none -- on a night when I've been swamped with high school football -- distinguished themselves enough to be mentioned.

Stone Crabs 2, Fort Myers 1 (completion of Sunday game)
Matt Hall
doubled and homered ... and I don't know if he did it Sunday or Friday.

Fort Myers 6, Stone Crabs 3 (Game 2)
Ty Morrison
and Omar Luna each singled twice and scored. Anthony Scelfo doubled, walked and erred.

Hot Rods 7, Lansing 3
Cody Rogers
doubled, walked three times and knocked in two runs. Steve Tinoco had three hits, an RBI and two runs scored. Nick Schwaner singled, doubled, walked, had two RBIs and scored. George Jensen gave up one run in five innings.

Brooklyn 7, Renegades 4 (Game 1)
Tanner Biagini
doubled twice and Brian Bryles had two RBIs.

Brooklyn 3, Renegades 0 (Game 2)
Ryan Carpenter
tossed three no-hit innings, walked one and faced the minimum. Gerardo Oliveras had two of Hudson Valley's five hits, including a double.

Bristol 13, P-Rays 7
Cameron Seitzer
hit a two-run homer, doubled, walked and scored twice. Junior Rodriguez homered, walked and scored twice after replacing Justin O'Conner (??).

GCL Orioles 9, Rays 6
John Alexander
homered, doubled and had three RBIs. Cesar Perez singled twice and walked twice. James Harris singled, walked, stole twice and scored twice. Shawn Smith threw three shutout innings and gave up one hit.

Friday: Biscuits 12, Mudcats 9

Henry Wrigley knocked in four runs and Shawn O'Malley scored three times in the Biscuits' 12-9 win over the Carolina Mudcats on Friday. Henry Rodriguez hit a two-run home run and grand slam for Carolina. Biscuits starter Kyle Lobstein won his Double-A debut.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Bulls postpone game due to hurricane

With Hurricane Irene headed their way, the Durham Bulls have already postponed the first game of a day-night doubleheader Saturday. The 1:05 p.m. EDT game will be made up as part of a normal doubleheader that starts at 4:05 p.m. EDT Sunday. Saturday's 7:05 p.m. EDT game will be played as scheduled.

Fleming has high bid after online round

Reliever Marquis Fleming took over the top spot and outfielder Kyeong Kang, Thursday's leader, dropped to third in online bids for their blue road jerseys. The Biscuits are auctioning off the jerseys -- with proceeds going to the United Way.

Through the online round of bidding, which ended at noon, Fleming's jersey drew a bid of $225 with infielder Henry Wrigley jumping to second at $205. Kyeong's $200 from Thursday stood.

Bidding continues tonight at Riverwalk Stadium. The minimum bid is $120.

$225 -- Marquis Fleming
$205 -- Henry Wrigley
$200 -- Kyeong Kang
$180 -- Jim Paduch
$175 -- John Shelby, Matt Moore
$155 -- Tim Beckham
$150 -- Hak-Ju Lee, Shane Dyer, Greg Sexton
$125 -- Stephen Vogt
$120 -- Matt Bush, Matt Sweeney, Ozzie Timmons, Shawn O'Malley, Nick Barnese

No bids
Craig Albernaz, Cole Figueroa, Zach Quate, John Matulia, Paul Phillips, Billy Gardner, Neil Schenk, Chris Archer, Bill Moloney, Alex Colome, Isaias Velasquez, Sergio Espinosa, David Wendt, Frank De Los Santos

Ranking the Rays ... Brett, Lyerly, Butler

For Thursday ...
1. Ryan Brett, PRI: 2-run HR, 1b, 2b, steal, 2 runs
2. Craige Lyerly, HV: 2 1b's, walk, 2 RBIs, 2 runs
3. Zach Butler, GCL: 3 perfect innings, 3 K's
4. Robi Estrada, BWG: 3 1b's, 2 steals, run
5. Brandon Guyer, DUR: solo HR, 2-run 2b

Barnese says he's healthy; Lobstein set for debut

Thursday was an ugly night for the Biscuits and pitcher Nick Barnese, but Barnese says he's healthy: "It was just one of those nights." By the way, 15-0 is the worst shutout loss in Biscuits history. Also, left-hander Kyle Lobstein makes his Double-A debut tonight.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thursday: Braves 15, Biscuits 0

Ernesto Mejia scored four times, Sean Henry had four RBIs, and the Mississippi Braves bludgeoned the Biscuits 15-0 on Thursday.

Montgomery surrendered a season-high 19 hits and managed just three of its own. Shawn O'Malley, John Shelby and Craig Albernaz singled off Braves starter Jose Lugo (1-4), who walked two and struck out five in eight innings.

Antoan Richardson walked three times, singled twice and scored twice for Mississippi. Mejia hit his 22nd home run in the sixth inning.

Thursday's Rays roundup

Charlotte 12, Bulls 7
Brandon Guyer
hit a solo home run, doubled and finished with three RBIs. Robinson Chirinos hit a two-run homer in the ninth. Russ Canzler singled twice, walked and scored twice. Stephen Vogt had two RBIs, a double and a walk. Lance Cormier and Mike Ekstrom each gave up four runs in the seventh inning.

Lansing 5, Hot Rods 2
Julio Cedeno
singled, doubled and had an RBI. Robi Estrada was 3-for-4 with two steals and a run scored. Chris Rearick tossed two perfect innings.

Renegades 6, Vermont 5
Craige Lyerly
singled twice, walked, had two RBIs and scored twice. Parker Markel allowed an unearned run and four hits in five innings.

P-Rays 8, Bristol 4
Justin O'Conner
hit a solo home run, doubled, stole and had three RBIs. Ryan Brett singled, doubled, hit a two-run homer, stole and scored twice. Ian Kendall gave up an unearned run in four innings.

GCL Red Sox 4, Rays 2
Zach Butler
threw three perfect innings with three strikeouts. John Alexander hit a solo home run. Brandon Martin walked twice and was caught stealing twice. Edward Dorville singled twice, was caught stealing and threw out a runner at home.

Barnese out after horrific two

Biscuits starter Nick Barnese had little control, lasted just two innings and left with Montgomery trailing 7-0. Four of the runs were earned. Barnese needed 70 pitches to record six outs. He also gave up four hits, issued three walks and tossed three wild pitches.

Barnese fended off a trainer's visit to the mound after he started the game with eight straight balls. As reliever Sergio Espinosa takes the mound, Montgomery's training staff is still in the dugout, which would seem to indicate that Barnese currently feels healthy.

No warnings planned

The umpiring crew said it does not plan to issue any pregame bench warnings tonight stemming from Wednesday.

Thursday's lineups

It's the finale of a five-game series and Biscuits broadcaster Joe Davis has called on a pinch-hitter tonight. With Davis away today and Friday for an high school football game, Doug Amos takes the radio mike.

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa 3b (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
John Matulia rf (left)
Greg Sexton dh
John Shelby lf
Isaias Velasquez cf
Craig Albernaz c
Nick Barnese rhp

Mycal Jones cf
Antoan Richardson lf
Dan Nelson 2b (switch)
Ernesto Mejia 1b
Ed Lucas ss
Donell Linares 3b
Cory Harrilchak rf (left)
Mat Kennelly c
Sean Henry dh
Jose Lugo lhp

Ranking the Rays ... Spann, Cruz, Thompson

A tough Wednesday ...
1. Matt Spann, PRI: 6 shutout innings, 2 hits, 1 walk, 6 K's
2. Joe Cruz, CHA: 5 shutout innings, 2 hits, 1 walk, 4 K's
3. Jake Thompson, CHA: 6 innings, 1 run, 3 hits, 0 walks, 2 K's
4. Johnny Eierman, GCL: 3b, 3 walks, 2 RBIs, 4 runs
5. Anthony Scelfo, CHA: 4-for-6, 2 RBIs, 2 runs, walk in DH

Wrigley apologizes for Matulia's HBP

I can't remember having a hitter admit they overly admired a home run and apologize to the teammate who, batting next, paid for it. But that's what happened Wednesday with Henry Wrigley's grand slam in Montgomery's 8-5 win over Mississippi.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wednesday: Biscuits 8, Braves 5

Henry Wrigley's seventh-inning grand slam pushed the Biscuits to an 8-5 win over the Mississippi Braves on Thursday, snapping Montgomery's four-game losing streak.

Craig Albernaz and Hak-Ju Lee each reached base three times and scored twice for Montgomery.

Albernaz's one-out double started the seventh-inning rally. Lee walked and, with two outs, Cole Figueroa walked to bring up Wrigley, who hit his 15th home run of the season.

Wednesday's Rays roundup

Norfolk 4, Bulls 3
Tim Beckham
hit a two-run home run. Robinson Chirinos singled and walked.

Stone Crabs 4, Jupiter 3 (Game 1)
Joe Cruz
threw five shutout innings with two hits allowed, one walk and four strikeouts. Reid Fronk scored the go-ahead run in the seventh when Jupiter erred on a potential inning-ending double play. Anthony Scelfo singled, walked and scored.

Stone Crabs 5, Jupiter 1 (Game 2)
Anthony Scelfo
had three singled, two RBIs and scored. Jake Jefferies knocked in two runs. Mike Sheridan singled, stole and scored twice. Jake Thompson twirled six innings of three-hit, one-run ball.

Lansing 4, Hot Rods 1
Robby Price
and Keith Castillo singled twice. Castillo had an RBI and Price scored, stole and was caught stealing. Left fielder Nick Schwaner threw out runners at third and home.

Renegades 3, Vermont 1
Jeff Malm
singled, walked twice and had an RBI. Alejandro Segovia hit a two-run home run in the fourth and grounded into a double play. Andrew Bellatti allowed two hits and a run over six innings. Stayton Thomas worked the final three, giving up two hits.

P-Rays 6, Pulaski 0
Matt Spann
and Jeff Ames combined on a four-hitter. Spann went six innings with one walk and six strikeouts. Ames walked none and struck out five. Jake Hager hit three singles. Drew Vettleson singled, walked, stole and scored twice.

GCL Rays 21, Red Sox 2
Johnny Eierman
ran for 137 yards and two touchdowns ... Wait a minute, dang football. ... Eierman tripled, walked thrice, had two RBIs and scored four times. Omar Narvaez singled, walked twice, had two RBIs and scored four times. Michael Bourdon totaled four singles, two RBIs and two runs scored. Ismel Antunez singled, doubled, walked, RBI'd and scored thrice.

Wrigley grand slam leads to pitcher's ejection

Biscuits first baseman Henry Wrigley hit a grand slam in the eighth inning tonight to give Montgomery an 8-5 lead over the Mississippi Braves. When Braves reliever Brett Butts' next pitch hit John Matulia in the back, home-plate umpire Brandon Henson ejected Butts, a former Auburn player.

The benches didn't empty. One Mississippi coach came out seemingly to make sure the Braves stayed put. Manager Rocket Wheeler did discuss the ejection with Henson.

UPDATE: Would have hit him in the back, but got him in the elbow first.

Wednesday's lineups

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa 3b (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
John Matulia rf (left)
Greg Sexton dh
Kyeong Kang lf (left)
Isaias Velasquez cf
Craig Albernaz c
Alex Colome rhp

Mycal Jones cf
Sean Henry lf
Dan Nelson 3b (switch)
Ernesto Mejia 1b
Ed Lucas ss
Donell Linares dh
Cory Harrilchak rf (left)
Mat Kennelly c
Jordan Kreke 2b
Aaron Shafer rhp

Archer expected to make Durham debut Saturday

Right-hander Chris Archer, just promoted from the Biscuits, is expected to make his Triple-A debut for Durham on Saturday against the Charlotte Knights. Archer is from Clayton, N.C., about a 40-minute drive from Durham's stadium.

Ranking the Rays ... Moore, De Los Santos, Belter

For Tuesday ...
1. Matt Moore, DUR: 6 shutout innings, 6 hits, walk, 6 K's (yawn)
2. Frank De Los Santos, MGM: 3 perfect innings, 2 K's
3. Brooks Belter, HV: 2 perfect innings, 4 K's
4. Tim Beckham, DUR: solo HR, 2 1b's, steal
5. Phil Wunderlich, BWG: 2 2b's, 1b, RBI, run

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Archer promoted to Durham

Biscuits pitcher Chris Archer has been promoted to Triple-A Durham, which is about 40 minutes from his family home. He was 8-7 with a 4.42 ERA for Montgomery.

"I feel that I'm just now starting to pitch well," Archer said. "I'm happy that, when the opportunity came to call up somebody, that they picked me because I haven't had the season I've wanted to have. They saw the hard work, and hard work does pay off."

Here's the full story.

Tuesday: Braves 4, Biscuits 1

Luis Avilan and two relievers combined on a five-hitter in the Mississippi Braves' 4-1 win over the Biscuits on Tuesday.

Cole Figueroa was 3-for-4 for the Biscuits, who had just five runners safely reach second base. Figueroa scored in the ninth on a Greg Sexton groundout.

Avilan (4-8) gave up one hit and struck out eight in five shutout innings. Ernesto Mejia hit an RBI double in the first and walked and scored in a three-run sixth for Misssissippi.

Tuesday's Rays roundup

Norfolk 6, Bulls 4 (13)
Matt Moore tossed six shutout innings, giving up six hits with a walk and six strikeouts before leaving with a four-run lead. He now has an 0.89 ERA, 23 hits allowed and 63 strikeouts in 40 2/3 innings. Tim Beckham homered, singled twice and stole. Matt Carson homered, doubled and walked. Nevin Ashley singled, walked and was hit twice.

Jupiter 11, Stone Crabs 5
Matt Hall
doubled, walked twice, knocked in a run, scored and erred. Mark Thomas had two RBIs. C.J. Riefenhauser lasted just three innings, giving up seven runs (five earned) on six hits. Deivis Mavarez threw 2 1/2 no-hit innings and Scott Shuman two no-hit innings.

Hot Rods 10, Great Lakes 8
Julio Cedeno
singled twice, stole and knocked in three runs. Phil Wunderlich doubled twice, singled, RBI'd and scored. Derek Dietrich singled twice, RBI'd and scored twice. Mayo Acosta singled, tripled and scored twice.

Vermont 5, Renegades 0
Brooks Belter
threw two perfect innings with four strikeouts. The Renegades totaled four singles, no walks and 12 strikeouts.

Pulaski 5, P-Rays 2
Ryan Brett
singled, walked and erred. Deshun Dixon singled and walked. Drew Vettleson and Taylor Motter hit consecutive doubles in the ninth. Motter scored on a Junior Rodriguez flyout.

GCL Twins 5, Rays 2
Ariel Soriano
singled twice and doubled. Ismel Antunez singled, doubled, walked and scored. Julian Morillo singled, tripled, RBI'd and scored. Isaac Gil threw two perfect innings.

Tuesday's lineups

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa 3b (left)
Henry Wrigley dh
John Matulia rf (left)
Greg Sexton 1b
John Shelby lf
Isaias Velasquez cf
David Wendt c
Shane Dyer rhp

Mycal Jones cf
Sean Henry lf
Dan Nelson 3b (switch)
Ernesto Mejia 1b
Ed Lucas ss
Donell Linares dh
Cory Harrilchak rf (left)
Braeden Schlehuber c
Jordan Kreke 2b
Luis Avilan lhp

Cruz activated by Stone Crabs

Pitcher Joe Cruz, whose season was seemingly over in early June when he left the Biscuits in early June, has joined high-Class A Charlotte's active roster.

Cruz is scheduled to start for the Stone Crabs in the opening game of a doubleheader Wednesday at Jupiter. The right-hander made four rehab appearances with the GCL Rays. He threw 13 2/3 shutout innings with six hits allowed, two walks and 16 strikeouts.

Nommensen goes on Charlotte's DL

Outfielder Brett Nommensen, who was suffering from a hamstring injury with the Biscuits before a demotion last week back to high-Class A Charlotte, went on the disabled list with the Stone Crabs today. Nommensen tweaked the hamstring in a game Saturday.

It's his third DL stint this year due to his right hamstring. He was also on Charlotte's DL from June 28-July 5 due to it.

Ranking the Rays ... Dorville, Smith, Koscso

For Monday ...
1. Edward Dorville, GCL: 1b, 3b, 2 RBIs, run, 2 steals
2. Shawn Smith, GCL: 2 2/3 no-hit innings, no walks, HBP
3. Jonathan Koscso, HV: 2 1b's, 2b, 2 RBIs, run, steal
4. Victor Mateo, BWG: 6 innings, 1 run, 6 hits, 3 walks
5. James Harris, GCL: 2 walks, HBP, 3 steals

Monday, August 22, 2011

Monday: Braves 8, Biscuits 5

Ernesto Mejia had three RBIs, scored twice and hit his Mississippi Braves-record 21st home run, in an 8-5 win over the Biscuits on Monday.

Montgomery starter Chris Archer (8-7) lasted just four innings. He gave up five runs on six hits and five walks. Mejia hit a two-run home run off him in the fourth to make it 5-0.

John Matulia hit a grand slam in the eighth for the Biscuits.

Monday's Rays roundup

Hot Rods 4, Great Lakes 1
Victor Mateo
worked six innings, allowing one run on six hits and three walks. Kevin Kiermaier singled twice, knocked in a run, scored and was caught stealing. Derek Dietrich was hit twice.

Renegades 4, Vermont 2
Jonathan Koscso
was 3-for-4 with a double, a steal, two RBIs and a run scored. Lenny Linsky picked up a three-inning save, giving up a run on four hits.

Pulaski 4, P-Rays 2
Drew Vettleson
hit a two-run home run in the first inning, singled and was caught stealing. Ryan Brett doubled and scored.

GCL Twins 12, Rays 3
James Harris
walked twice and stole thrice. Edward Dorville singled, tripled, had two RBIs, stole two bases and scored. Shawn Smith threw 2 2/3 no-hit innings.

Lobstein set for Double-A debut

Left-handed pitcher Kyle Lobstein has joined the Biscuits from high-Class A Charlotte and is scheduled to make his Double-A debut Friday.

Lobstein was 9-9 with a 3.77 ERA for the Stone Crabs after a one-run, six-inning no-decision start Sunday. The Biscuits will have to make another transaction before his start Friday.

Lobstein, who turned 22 this month, faced questions before the season over his lack of velocity, but he said he feels great and it's not something he's worried about "as long as I locate it."

"Location is a bigger factor than velocity," Lobstein said. "If you throw harder, you can get away with more, but I've been able to put it where I want it. Lately, I've been feeling strong and my arm is healthy. The ball has been coming out of my hand well, with late life, and I'm throwing a lot of strikes."

Lobstein missed the first three weeks of this year with shoulder inflammation suffered the day after his final spring training appearance, Lobstein said.

"They shut me down for a little bit to make sure I was healthy," Lobstein said. "I missed a few starts, got healthy and haven't had any problems since."

Monday's lineups

Hak-Ju Lee ss (left)
Shawn O'Malley 2b (switch)
Cole Figueroa (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
John Matulia rf (left)
John Shelby cf
Kyeong Kang lf (left)
Matt Sweeney dh (left)
Craig Albernaz c
Chris Archer rhp

Antoan Richardson dh (switch)
Mycal Jones cf
Dan Nelson 3b (switch)
Ernesto Mejia 1b
Ed Lucas ss
Cory Harrilchak rf (left)
Braeden Schlehuber c
Jordan Kreke 2b
Sean Henry lf
Zeke Spruill rhp

Former Rays coach to manage indy team

Gary Gaetti, the former major league All-Star and Durham hitting coach, has been named the manager of the independent Sugar Land Skeeters.

The Skeeters -- named for the insect, not the former Biscuits hitting coach -- are an expansion team in suburban Houston that will begin play next year in the Atlantic League. Gaetti worked for the Rays in 2007-08 at Triple-A Durham.

Archer finds mark for Southern League honor

Biscuits right-hander Chris Archer will take the mound tonight as the Southern League pitcher of the week.

Archer won due to his seven shutout innings Wednesday in a victory at Birmingham. He gave up one hit, walked five and struck out four. Archer is 8-6 with a 4.21 ERA this year, though he's unbeaten in his last five starts.

Archer is a two-time winner of the Southern League's weekly pitching award. He also won in July 2010 when he was with the Tennessee Smokies.

Chattanooga right fielder Alex Castellanos, who joined the Lookouts just this month, was the top hitter. He's hitting .400 in his current 11-game hit streak and was 13-for-30 with 11 RBIs for the week ending Sunday.

Dietrich muscles way to Midwest League award

Bowling Green shortstop Derek Dietrich's home run binge landed him the Midwest League's player of the week award.

Dietrich had a five-game homer streak end Saturday and is 10-for-26 with eight RBIs over his last seven games. He's hitting .290 with 21 homers and 73 RBIs this year. This is Dietrich's second player of the week award. He also won it for the week of July 4-11.

Ranking the Rays ... Estrada, Lobstein, O'Malley

For Sunday ...
1. Robi Estrada, BWG: 1b, 2 walks, 2 steals, run
2. Kyle Lobstein, CHA: 6 innings, 1 run, 7 hits, 1 walk, 8 K's
3. Shawn O'Malley, MGM: 2-run HR, 2 1b's, 2 runs, caught stealing
4. Felipe Rivero, PRI: 6 innings, 3 runs, 7 hits, no walks, 9 K's
5. Jim Paduch, MGM: 7 innings, 2 runs, 4 hits, 3 walks, 5 K's

I decided to include Kyle Lobstein though Charlotte's game was suspended until Friday since his efforts were finished Sunday.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sunday: Braves 5, Biscuits 4 (10)

Cory Harrilchak's two-run double in the 10th inning pushed the Mississippi Braves to a 5-4 victory over the Biscuits on Sunday.

In the bottom of the 10th, Montgomery's John Matulia singled home Shawn O'Malley with two outs to pull the Biscuits within one. With the potential tying run on third, Greg Sexton flied out to end it.

Hak-Ju Lee, making his Riverwalk Stadium debut, hit an RBI triple in the third inning. O'Malley followed with his first home run to give Montgomery a 3-0 lead.

Mississippi's Mycal Jones, who finished 4-for-4 with two doubles and a walk, doubled to lead off the eighth inning. He scored from third on an error to tie it 3-3.

Sunday's Rays roundup

Bulls 4, Norfolk 3 (10)
Tim Beckham
singled home Ray Olmedo in the 10th inning. Beckham also singled and stole. Brandon Guyer singled twice, tripled, walked and scored. Dane De La Rosa struck out five over two innings.

Fort Myers at Charlotte (DH)
Game 1 suspended in seventh. To resume Friday before the regularly scheduled game and a doubleheader on Saturday's slate.

Hot Rods 5, Great Lakes 2
Keith Castillo
hit a solo home run and singled. Robi Estrada singled, walked twice, stole twice and scored. Eliazer Suero gave up two runs over six innings.

Vermont 8, Renegades 3
Alejandro Segovia
had three singles and an RBI. Jeff Malm walked twice.

Bristol 4, P-Rays 3
Ryan Brett
and Taylor Motter each singled thrice and RBI'd. Motter also stole. Jake DePew walked twice. Josh Sale singled, walked and scored twice. Felipe Rivero had a book-rule quality start with no walks and nine strikeouts.

Sunday's lineups

It's the opener of a five-game series and the start of a 10-game homestand, Montgomery's final homestand of the year.

Hak-Ju Lee (left)
Shawn O'Malley (switch)
Cole Figueroa (left)
Henry Wrigley 1b
John Matulia rf (left)
Greg Sexton 3b
John Shelby lf
Isaias Velasquez cf
Craig Albernaz c
Jim Paduch rhp

Antoan Richardson dh (switch)
Mycal Jones cf
Dan Nelson 3b
Ernesto Mejia 1b
Ed Lucas ss
Cory Harrilchak rf (left)
Mat Kennelly c
Jordan Kreke 2b
Sean Henry lf
Chris Cody rlhp

Ranking the Rays ... Harris, Segovia, Barnese

For Saturday ...
1. James Harris, GCL: 2 2b's, 1b, walk, steal, 2 runs
2. Alejandro Segovia, HV: 2-run HR, 1b, walk, 2 runs scored
3. Nick Barnese, MGM: 7 innings, 4 hits, 2 runs, 0 walks, 7 K's
4. George Jensen, BWG: 5 shutout innings, 1 hit, 2 walks, 0 K's
5. Drew Vettleson, PRI: 2 1b's, 2b, walk, steal, caught stealing, RBI

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Saturday's Rays roundup

Norfolk 3, Bulls 2
Matt Carson
singled and homered. Dan Johnson had a single, an RBI and a walk. Andy Sonnanstine recorded a book-rule quality start.

Stone Crabs 6, Fort Myers 2
Brett Nommensen
was 3-for-3 with a double, RBI and run scored. Mark Thomas hit a two-run home run. Albert Suarez won his debut with 5 2/3 innings of one-run ball. He gave up three hits and walked two. (Because of rain, the scheduled doubleheader moved to Sunday.)

Great Lakes 3, Hot Rods 2 (10)
Derek Dietrich
had his five-game home run streak snapped, finishing 0-for-2 with three walks, a steal and an error. Robi Estrada hit a two-run double in the sixth. Cody Rogers doubled twice and stole. Robby Price walked twice. George Jensen threw five shutout innings and allowed one hit. Chris Rearick (6-2) gave up a hit and a run and recorded two outs. It was the first run he's allowed since July 21, a stretch of 16 2/3 innings.

Vermont 14, Renegades 4
Alejandro Segovia
hit a two-run home run, singled, walked and scored twice. Jeff Malm singled, walked, stole and scored twice.

P-Rays 8, Bristol 6 (13)
Drew Vettleson
singled twice, doubled, walked, stole, was caught stealing and knocked in a run. Ryan Brett doubled, walked twice, RBI'd and scored. Cameron Seitzer walked thrice.

GCL Orioles 8, Rays 2
James Harris
singled, doubled twice, walked, stole and scored twice. Ricky Orta gave up one run in three innings. Hector Duarte allowed five runs on six hits in three innings.

Saturday: Barons 4, Biscuits 3

Tyler Kuhn's two-out, two-run single in the bottom of the ninth lifted the Birmingham Barons to a 4-3 win over the Biscuits on Saturday. Zach Quate (4-6) gave up two hits, hit a batter and walked one in the ninth. Barons reliever/St. James grad Brandon Kloess retired all four hitters he faced.

Ranking the Rays ... Guyer, Lyerly, Colome

For Friday ...
1. Brandon Guyer, DUR: 2b, 3b, 2 1b's, 4 RBIs, 2 runs
2. Craige Lyerly, HV: 4 1b's, steal, RBI, 2 runs
3. Alex Colome, MGM: 6 2/3 shutout innings, 2 hits, 3 walks
4. Hak-Ju Lee, MGM: 3 walks, 2 steals, 2 runs, caught stealing
5. Dan Johnson, DUR: 1b, 2b, solo HR, walk

By the way, I'm skipping the weekly Saturday "system check" due to blasted football.

Friday's Rays roundup

Bulls 7, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 4
Brandon Guyer
was 4-for-5 with four RBIs, two runs scored, a double and triple. Dan Johnson singled, doubled, homered and walked. Stephen Vogt doubled, singled and knocked in two runs.

Fort Myers at Charlotte
Rained out.

Lansing 6, Hot Rods 2
Derek Dietrich
homered for a fifth straight game. Kevin Keirmaier was 3-for-3 with a solo home run.

Renegades 6, State College 4
Leonardo Reginatto
and Craige Lyerly each hit RBI singles in the eighth inning. Lyerle was 4-for-5 with two runs scored and a steal. Brian Bryles singled twice, stole twice, scored and erred. Justin Woodall retired all five batters he faced, three via strikeout.

P-Rays 6, Bristol 3
Joel Caminero
singled twice, tripled, stole, RBI'd and scored twice. Drew Vettleson swiped three bases, singled and knocked in two runs. Ryan Brett doubled, tripled, walked and scored twice.

GCL Orioles 5, Rays 0
Riccio Torrez
and Cesar Perez each singled twice.

Friday: Biscuits 11, Barons 0

Alex Colome and two relievers combined on a two-hitter in the Biscuits' 11-0 win over the Birmingham Barons on Friday. Colome gave up both hits in 6 2/3 innings. Sergio Espinosa followed with 1 1/3 perfect and Paul Phillips a perfect ninth.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Ranking the Rays ... Rogers, Torres, O'Conner

For Thursday ...
1. Cody Rogers, BWG: 2-run HR, 3b, walk, 4 RBIs, 2 runs
2. Alex Torres, DUR: 7 shutout innings, 4 hits, 3 walks, 7 K's
3. Justin O'Conner, PRI: 3-run HR, 4 RBIs, 2 runs
4. Joe Cruz, GCL: 5-inning, 2-hit shutout, 1 walk, 6 K's
5. Russ Canzler, DUR: 2-run HR, 2 1b's, 2 runs

Thursday's Rays roundup

Bulls 5, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 1
Alex Torres
threw seven shutout innings, allowing four hits and three walks. Russ Canzler singled twice, hit a two-run home run and scored twice. Tim Beckham cracked a solo homer and erred. Nevin Ashley hit a two-run single in the second inning.

Bradenton 3, Stone Crabs 1
Alejandro Torres
had two of Charlotte's six hits, including a double. Merrill Kelly recorded a book-rule quality start.

Hot Rods 6, Lansing 2
Cody Rogers
hit a two-run home run, an RBI triple, drew a bases-loaded walk and scored twice. Rogers and Derek Dietrich went back-to-back in the fifth. Steve Hiscock threw three shutout innings. Chris Rearick issued a walk in the ninth -- and now has given up just three hits to the last 59 batters he's faced.

Renegades 6, State College 3
Chris Winder
had three singles, an RBI and a run scored. Brian Bryles hit a two-run double. Craige Lyerly singled, was plunked, had an RBI and scored. Raymond Church and Juniel Querecuto each singled twice and erred.

P-Rays 11, Danville 2
Justin O'Conner
, after a woeful game Wednesday, hit a three-run home run, finished with four RBIs and scored twice. Felix Gonzalez and Drew Vettleson each had four hits with Vettleson adding two RBIs and a steal. Taylor Mottoer singled, walked thrice and scored twice. Shay Crawford threw 4 2/3 shutout innings.

GCL Rays 4, Twins 0 (5 1/2, rain)
Rehabbing Biscuit Joe Cruz tossed a five-inning two-hitter. He walked one and struck out six. Ismel Antunez's two-out RBI single capped a four-run fourth.

Thursday: Barons 2, Biscuits 1

Charlie Leesman tossed seven innings of one-run ball to lead the Birmingham Barons in a 2-1 victory over the Biscuits on Thursday. Leesman (9-6) gave up three hits, walked four and struck out eight.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Biscuits dictate terms of annual jersey auction

The Biscuits' annual jersey auction begins at the team's website,, at noon Friday. This year, the road blue jerseys are available. The minimum bid is $120. Online bidding lasts through noon Aug. 26 with more at a silent auction at that night's game. Proceeds benefit the local United Way.

Matulia, Nommensen sent down

Outfielder John Matulia has rejoined the Biscuits from Triple-A Durham and Brett Nommensen has been sent back to high-Class A Charlotte.

Ranking the Rays ... Shull, Romero, Archer

For Wednesday ...
1. Trevor Shull, HV: 5 shutout innings, 1 hits, 1 walk, 6 K's
2. Enny Romero, BWG: 5 shutout innings, 2 hits, 5 walks, 10 K's
3. Chris Archer, MGM: 7 shutout innings, 1 hit, 5 walks, HBP, 4 K's
4. Derek Dietrich, BWG: 2-run HR, 2b
5. Tim Beckham, DUR: 1b, 3b, 2 runs

Wednesday's Rays roundup

Bulls 3, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 2
Matt Moore
worked just four innings, allowing one run on one hit with three walks and eight strikeouts. Tim Beckham singled, tripled and scored twice. Brandon Guyer had three hits.

Bradenton 5, Stone Crabs 0
Tyler Bortnick
had three of Charlotte's eight hits, including a double, and erred. Scott Shuman and Deivis Mavarez each walked one over two shutout innings.

Hot Rods 3, Lansing 2
Derek Dietrich
hit a two-run home run in the first inning and doubled. Nick Schwaner had three hits and an RBI. Kevin Kiermaier singled twice and threw out a runner at third. Enny Romero tossed five shutout innings with two hits allowed, five walks and 10 strikeouts.

State College 2, Renegades 1
Jeff Malm
walked thrice. Raymond Church singled twice, doubled, stole, was caught stealing and RBI'd. Matt Rice singled and doubled. Trevor Shull threw five shutout innings, allowing one hit with a walk and six strikeouts.

Danville 8, P-Rays 7 (11)
Ryan Brett
singled twice, doubled and knocked in two runs. Taylor Motter hit three singles and scored twice. Cameron Seitzer doubled, walked and had two RBIs. Jake Hager singled twice, doubled and scored. Justin O'Conner committed two errors and suffered three passed balls.

GCL Twins 3, Rays 0 (Game 1)
Hector Rodriguez
had two of the Rays' four hits. Johnny Eierman walked twice. Edward Dorville singled and walked.

GCL Twins 5, Rays 2 (Game 2)
Johnny Eierman
had two of the Rays' five hits and scored. Hector Rodriguez knocked in two runs.

Wednesday: Biscuits 7, Barons 1

Chris Archer tossed seven shutout innings, allowing one hit though walking five in the Biscuits' 7-1 win over the Birmingham Barons on Wednesday.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Suarez to make Stone Crab debut Friday

Right-hander Albert Suarez is scheduled to make his debut with the Charlotte Stone Crabs on Friday against Fort Myers. Kyle Lobstein, previously scheduled to start Friday, has been pushed to Saturday.

Pitcher on Rays' 40-man roster activated from DL

Right-handed pitcher Albert Suarez, a member of Tampa Bay's 40-man roster, has been activated by the Charlotte Stone Crabs.

The 21-year-old has been on the disabled list all season. He made four rehab starts with the GCL Rays, capped by a five-inning, one-run start Saturday. Suarez, who is in his fourth pro season, had a 1.38 ERA in 13 innings.

Suarez was not listed as an upcoming probable pitcher on Charlotte's pregame notes Tuesday.

Ranking the Rays ... Bortnick, Torra, Sexton

For Tuesday ...
1. Tyler Bortnick, CHA: 2b, 2 1b's, walk, 3 steals, RBI, 2 runs
2. Matt Torra, DUR: 6 shutout innings, 4 hits, walk, 3 K's
3. Greg Sexton, MGM: 2 1b's, walk, HBP, 2 runs
4. Jake Jefferies, CHA: solo HR, RBI double, 2 runs
5. John Alexander, GCL: 2 2b's, 1b, 3 RBIs

Tuesday's Rays roundup

Bulls 2, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 0
Matt Torra
tossed six innings, allowing four hits and one walk. Jay Buente and Rob Delaney finished a six-hitter. Matt Carson hit a solo home run and threw out a runner at home.

Bradenton 7, Stone Crabs 6
Tyler Bortnick
singled twice, doubled, walked, stole thrice, RBI'd and scored twice. Jake Jefferies hit a solo home run, an RBI double and scored twice.

Danville 3, P-Rays 2
Jake Hager
singled, doubled and scored. Ryan Brett singled twice, stole and scored. Drew Vettleson was 2-for-4. Marcus Jensen threw three-plus no-hit innings, allowing an unearned run and walking two.

GCL Red Sox 11, Rays 8
Ariel Soriano
, dropped back to the GCL, was 0-for-5. John Alexander doubled twice, singled and had three RBIs. Julian Morillo singled, walked twice, stole and scored twice. Brandon Choate hit a solo home run. Ismel Antunez singled, walked, RBI'd and scored twice.

Renegades star in New York-Penn All-Star Game

The three Hudson Valley pitchers in the New York-Penn League All-Star Game each threw a perfect inning Tuesday in the AL team's 7-3 loss to the NL.

Parker Markel started, Robert Dickmann threw the sixth and Charlie Cononie the seventh. Each also had two strikeouts.

Renegades first baseman Jeff Malm started, doubled and scored. Catcher Matt Rice started and was 0-for-2.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tuesday: Barons 4, Biscuits 2

Terry Doyle gave up no earned runs and struck out eight over six innings in the Birmingham Barons' 4-2 win over the Biscuits on Tuesday. St. James graduate Brandon Kloess pitched an inning for Birmingham.

Soriano jumps from GCL to Stone Crabs

Outfielder Ariel Soriano has moved down the hall at Tampa Bay's minor league complex in Port Charlotte, Fla. He's been promoted from the GCL Rays to the high-Class A Charlotte Stone Crabs, though it wouldn't appear to be a long-term move. The 19-year-old was hitting just .208 in 41 games, though he led the team with 18 RBIs and 21 runs scored.

UPDATE: And he's sent back down. Soriano was 0-for-5 with an error for the GCL Rays on Tuesday.

Rays' 2011 draftees and their Rule 5 draft year

Here's an outrageously early look at when Tampa Bay's 2011 draft signees would be eligible for the Rule 5 draft.

Mikie Mahtook, Jeff Ames, Kes Carter, Grayson Garvin, Lenny Linsky, Riccio Torrez, Jake Floethe, Ryan Carpenter, Matt Rice, Cameron Seitzer

Taylor Motter, Andy Bass, Garrett Smith, Ryan Terry, Matthew Johnson, Charlie Cononie, Brooks Belter, Raymond Church, Lucas Irvine, Jonathan Koscso

Isaac Gil, Ryan Turner, Daniel Bream, Zach Butler, David Kubiak, Brandon Choate, Theron Geith, Shay Crawford, Mike Bourdon, Stayton Thomas, Ian Tomkins

Taylor Guerrieri, Jake Hager, Brandon Martin, Tyler Goeddel, Blake Snell, James Harris Jr., Graden Goetzman, Johnny Eierman, John Alexander, Jacob Faria

(The way I understand it, it comes down to how old they are as of June 5 of this year. If they're 18 or younger, it's draft year-plus-four. If older than 18, it's draft year-plus-three.)

Ranking the Rays ... Beckham, Rearick, Matulia

For Monday ...
1. Tim Beckham, DUR: grand slam, 3b, 2b, 1b, 2 runs scored in DH
2. Chris Rearick, BWG: perfect inning, has given up 3 hits to the last 55 batters faced
3. John Matulia, DUR: solo HR, 2 1b's, walk, 2 runs in DH
4. Cody Rogers, BWG: 2 1b's, walk, 2 runs, error
5. Shawn O'Malley, MGM: 2b, 2 1b's, walk, run

Rays finalize draft signings

The Rays went to the deadline before agreeing to terms with their top two picks in the June draft.

Prep pitcher Taylor Guerrieri, the 24th overall pick, and LSU outfielder Mikie Mahtook, the 31st, signed just before Monday's midnight Eastern deadline.

So did two supplemental first-round picks (prep third baseman Tyler Goedell and Vanderbilt pitcher Grayson Garvin), which means the Rays reached terms with their top 14 picks. They signed 20 of their first 21 picks and 41 of their total 60. For the best draft board, click here.

Monday's Rays roundup

Bulls 2, Buffalo 1 (Game 1)
Stephen Vogt
and Ray Olmedo each had two hits. Andy Sonnanstine gave up one run on seven hits and a walk in 6 1/3 innings.

Bulls 8, Buffalo 3 (Game 2)
Tim Beckham
was 3-for-5 with a grand slam, double and two runs scored. John Matulia was 3-for-3 with a solo home run, walk and two runs scored. Leslie Anderson was hit by a pitch and left early.

South Bend 4, Hot Rods 3
Cody Rogers
singled twice, walked, scored twice and erred. Derek Dietrich doubled and hit a two-run home run. Victor Mateo threw five shutout innings. Chris Rearick tossed a perfect ninth.

GCL Red Sox 6, Rays 3
Julian Morillo
tripled, singled, walked, RBI'd and scored. Riccio Torrez hit a solo home run, singled and stole a base.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Monday: Mudcats 6, Biscuits 5

Eric Campbell hit a three-run home run in the first inning to spark the Carolina Mudcats to a 6-5 win over the Biscuits on Monday. John Shelby and Hak-Ju Lee homered for Montgomery.

Lee's homer, his first in Double-A, came with two outs in the ninth inning and made it 6-4. Shawn O'Malley tripled and scored on an error to pull the Biscuits within one.

Delmon Young traded to Tigers

Minnesota Twins outfielder Delmon Young, the 2005 Southern League most valuable player for the Biscuits, was traded today to the Minnesota Twins for a Class A pitcher and a player to be named.

He's scheduled to make his Detroit debut at home tonight when the Tigers start a series ironically the Twins.

Young, who was born in Montgomery, went from the Rays to the Twins in a November 2007 trade. He was hitting .266 with four homers and 32 RBIs in 84 games for Minnesota season. Delmon's older brother, Dmitri, once played for the Tigers.

Left-hander Cole Nelson goes from the Tigers to Twins. He was at high-Class A Lakeland this year.

Lobstein wins Florida State League weekly award

Charlotte left-hander Kyle Lobstein landed the Florida State League's weekly pitching award with two straight dominating performances against the St. Lucie Mets.

Lobstein threw 12 shutout innings in two starts for the week, both wins over St. Lucie. He gave up nine hits, walked one and struck out 11.

Lobstein is 9-9 with a 3.89 ERA in 20 games this season. Of his 19 starts, Lobstein has failed to reach the fifth inning only once and the sixth inning only three times.

The 21-year-old is a three-time winner of the FSL award. He also win in mid-May and early June.

Wrigley best in Southern League's week

Biscuits infielder Henry Wrigley, owner of an 11-game hitting streak, won the Southern League's player of the week award Monday.

Wrigley was 9-for-19 for the week that ended Sunday with three home runs, seven runs scored and six RBIs. He has a .405 average and has scored 10 times during the hitting streak.

Wrigley, who turned 25 last week, has a .286 average, 14 home runs and 65 RBIs this year.

He's Montgomery's first weekly award winner since Matt Moore won the pitching award in late May. The last Biscuit to win the hitter's award was Chris Nowak in June 2010.

Mobile left-hander Tyler Skaggs was the top pitcher. He threw seven innings Friday, allowing one run one two hits with no walks and seven strikeouts in a home win over Mississippi.

Ranking the Rays ... Rogers, Riefenhauser, Dietrich

For Sunday ...
1. Cody Rogers, BWG: 2 3b's, 1b, 4 RBIs, 2 runs
2. C.J. Riefenhauser, CHA: 5 innings, 1 run, 3 hits, 0 walks, 4 K's
3. Derek Dietrich, BWG: solo HR, 2 1b's, 2 RBIs (2 runners LOB)
4. Phil Wunderlich, BWG: solo HR, 2 1b's, 2 RBIs (3 runners LOB)
5. Robby Price, BWG: 2 2b's, 1b, walk, 2 runs

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sunday's Rays roundup

Bulls at Buffalo
Rained out.

St. Lucie 4, Stone Crabs 0
Ty Morrison
singled, walked and was caught stealing. C.J. Riefenhauser gave up one run on three hits in five innings. The Crabs managed three baserunners.

Hot Rods 10, South Bend 5
Cody Rogers
tripled twice, singled, had four RBIs and scored twice. Derek Dietrich and Phil Wunderlich each hit solo home runs, singled twice and had two RBIs. Robby Price doubled twice, singled, walked and scored twice.

Tri-City 2, Renegades 0
Brian Bryles
singled, walked and stole. Andrew Bellatti threw 5 2/3 shutout innings. The Renegades, who totaled five hits, two walks and an HBP, had two runners thrown out at home.

Kingsport 7, P-Rays 2
Jake Hager
hit a two-run home run in the sixth. Felix Gonzalez singled twice and scored.