Some nights the line drives and grounders find holes and some nights they find gloves. Tonight, the Bristol White Sox defense had them find their gloves while the Johnson City defense could only watch and see them hit the holes. Johnson City (8-6) was shutout and lost a 3-game series (0-2 this series) for the first time in 2009.
Johnson City allowed single runs in the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 7th innings and allowed 2 unearned runs on three errors however, their biggest problem was scoring runs. Edgar Lara had a 2-out seeing-eye single in the 2nd but was stranded at 1st. Hector Alvarez had a 1-out double in the 3rd but was left stranded at third after a wild pitch. The 4th seemed to be the Cardinals best scoring opportunity as Rich Racobaldo and Matt Adams led off with back-to-back singles however Robert Stock hit into a 1-6-3 broken-bat double play to end the threat. A Matt Rigoli single in the 5th left yet another runner stranded.
The Cardinals again put the first two hitters on base in the 6th. A Michael Swinson single followed by a Rich Racobaldo single and one-base fielding error on the Bristol RF put runners on second and third with nobody out but a Matt Adams line drive to the second baseman had Rich Racobaldo moving the wrong direction and the rally was again halted with a double play.
New Bristol pitchers in the 7th and 8th sat down the Cardinals in 1-2-3 fashion. A 2-out single by Robert Stock in the 9th was all the offense Johnson City could muster. The Cardinals finished with 8 hits (7 singles and 1 double). The most amazing stat of the night was that exactly none of the 33 Cardinal hitters were able to get to a 3-ball count and only 6 were able to hit with a 2-ball count (1-for-6, 3 K, 1 GIDP).
Bristol was able to make the most of three Cardinal “nobody-out” errors. SS Hector Alvarez threw high over 1B Matt Rigoli’s head on a routine grounder in the 3rd and the White Sox plated their first run on no hits. A 2B Luis Mateo fielding error (bad short-hop) and a P Anthony Ferrara wild pick-off throw in the 7th led to another unearned run.
Anthony Ferrara (#2 web gem) made a very athletic leaping play on a high chopper destined for CF against his first hitter in the 6th. RF Edgar Lara (#1 web gem) recorded his third outfield assist of the year on a bases-loaded double play in the 7th. Lara unloaded an accurate 1-hop throw to C Robert Stock who applied a nice tag to get Ferrara out of the two error jam discussed earlier. Michael Swinson had a chance at an outfield assist from right center field to third base in the 4th but 3B Rich Racobaldo pulled his glove down to apply the tag before he got the ball secured in his glove.
Michael Thompson: 56 pitches (42 strikes, 14 balls), 11-for-18 first-pitch-strikes
Jose Rada: 17 pitches (9 strikes, 8 balls), 1-for-4 first-pitch-strikes
Anthony Ferrara: 48 pitches (33 strikes, 15 balls), 9-for-12 first-pitch-strikes
Aaron Terry: 14 pitches (10 strikes, 4 balls), 1-for-3 first-pitch-strikes
The last game of the 3-game series is tomorrow night. The tandem starters should be LHP John Durham followed by RHP Randy Santos. I plan to be there for the action! Hope you will be too…
Sorry for it being so long since I entered anything. I have been out of town. I am planning to be at the game tonight at home against the Bristol White Sox.
Tonight’s starters should be Michael Thompson (0-0, 1.35 ERA) getting his first professional start followed by Anthony Ferrara (1-0, 0.96 ERA) to start the 6th inning (perhaps the 5th if Thompson struggles). The Thompson/Ferrara duo will look to keep Johnson City on track for its fifth series win in a row to start the 2009 season.
Thomspon has pitched 6 and 2/3 innings over 3 games and has allowed 7 hits, 1 run, 1 earned run, 0 walks, and 9 strikeouts (1.05 WHIP). Thompson leads the team in holds (2). He was selected in the 47th round of the June 2009 First-Year Player Draft out of Bellarmine College in Louisville, KY. Bellarmine was also where current St. Louis Cardinal starting pitcher Todd Wellemeyer played between 1997 and 2000. Thompson is from Newburgh, IN. Wellemeyer is scheduled to start Wed. night in Milwaukee.
Ferrara has twirled 9 and 1/3 innings over two starts and has allowed 9 hits, 1 run, 1 earned run, 2 walks, and 6 stikeouts (1.18 WHIP). Ferrara was selected in the 7th round of the June 2008 First-Year Player Draft out of Riverview High School in Riverview, FL. Riverview is the home of the “Sharks”.
Right-handed pitcher Tyler Leach and switch-hitting middle infielder Hector Alvarez have both been assigned to Batavia, the A Short Season club in the St. Louis Cardinals organization. Neither saw action in Batavia’s first game of the season last night.
Brian Walton recently posted a preliminary roster for the Batavia Muckdogs, St. Louis’ A Short Season team in the New York-Penn League.
11 former Johnson City Cardinals are currently scheduled to start the 2009 season in Batavia, NY and at least one of them, Jairo Martinez appears to be trying out a new position.
Deryk Hooker (RHSP) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Mike Blazek (RHSP) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Eric Fornataro (RHSP) – 2008 Johnson City and Gulf Coast League Cardinals
LaCurtis Mayes (RHRP) – 2007 and 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Santo Maertz (RHRP) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Ivan Castro (C) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Jack Cawley (C) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Jairo Martinez (IF) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Niko Vasquez (SS) – 2008 Johnson City Cardinals
Beau Riportella (OF) – 2007 Johnson City Cardinals
Ryde Rodriguez (OF) – 2008 Johnson City and Gulf Coast League Cardinals
It is unlikely that any of the players listed above will see playing time with Johnson City this year.