The Farm Report: 9/8/12 – Empire State’s season ends

The game quieted down quite a bit after the second, with neither team getting more than one base runner on at a time. Corban Joseph hit a solo shot to center in the fourth, but that was all the Yankees could manage, despite the bullpen putting together a solid 7.1 innings of relief work.  In the end, Pawtucket took the 7-1 victory, winning the series three games to one and earning a date with the Charlotte Knights in the Championship round of the Governor’s Cup.

Bronx Cheers:
Vidal Nuno: Nuno lasted just 1.2 innings and gave up seven runs on seven hits, a walk and a strike out.

The Offense: The Yankees only managed two hits against their old teammate, Nelson Figueroa, who went eight strong innings. Kevin Russo, Ronnier Mustelier and Luke Murton each went 0-4.

Curtain Calls:
Kelvin Perez: After Nuno was pulled with two outs in the second, Perez threw a strong 3.1 innings for the Yankees. He gave up two hits and struck out four.…

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The Farm Report: 9/7/12 – A walk-off homer and a pair of playoff victories!

Meanwhile, the Yankees bats continued to be cold, as they failed to get a hit in the third through the seventh. Pawtucket added some insurance in the top of the eighth. Jason Repko started the inning with a single to right, moving to second on an error by Cole Garner. A wild pitch moved Repko to third and J.C. Linares tripled him in. Ryota Igarashi was able to strike out Danny Valencia and get LaRoche to ground out, ending the inning with the Yankees trailing 3-0.

Gustavo Molina finally got the Yankees on the board with a solo homer to left in the bottom of the eighth. Kevin Russo started the ninth with a double down the right field line, almost getting thrown out at second. Corban Joseph grounded out, moving Russo to third. A single by Ronnier Mustelier plated Russo and brought the Yankees within one. Luke Murton promptly popped out to first, leaving the Red Sox just one out away from moving on to the Championship round.…

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The Farm Report: 9/6/12 – Trenton evens their series, Empire State down 0-2

The Yankees had a chance to strike back in the top of the sixth, as Ronnier Mustelier drew a walk and Murton was hit by a pitch. Mesa grounded into a double play, though personally I thought he beat the throw to first. Unfortunately, Romine hit a sharp grounder to third and was too slow to first, ending the inning.

Empire State found itself in all kinds of trouble in the bottom of the seventh. Spears started the inning with a double, after three Yankee fielders converged on the ball and none came up with it. Brentz lined a single to right, tying the game. Jonathan Hee grounded a single to right, that rolled under Corban Joseph’s glove at second. Cole Garner made a bad throw to third, allowing Brentz to score and giving the Red Sox the 3-2 lead. Juan Cedeno entered the game for Ortiz and struck out Jeremy Hazelbaker. Preston Claiborne took the ball next, striking out Thomas.  …

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The Farm Report: 9/5/12 – Playoffs! (mostly)

Unfortunately, the Red Sox got their insurance in the bottom of the eighth. Kelvin Perez replaced Whitley on the mound and gave up a lead-off single to Dan Butler. Bryce Brentz hit a homer to center and the PawSox held a 7-4 advantage. Ramiro Pena tried to get a rally going in the ninth, when he singled with one out. Darnell McDonald doubled, putting runners on second and third with the top of the order coming up. Kevin Russo struck out at a ball that almost landed in the dirt and Joseph went down looking to end the game with a 7-4 Yankee defeat.

Bronx Cheers:
Ronnier Mustelier:
 Went 0-4 and hit into a double play.

John Maine: Gave up five runs on seven hits, two homers and two walks over just 4.2 innings of work. He struck out six.

Kelvin Perez: Gave up two runs on two hits in one inning.

Curtain Calls:
Corban Joseph: He went 2-4 with a run scored, a walk and a double.…

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Minor League Playoff Preview: Trenton Thunder

Pitching:
The loss of major prospects like Dellin Betances and Manuel Banuelos made pitching a question mark for the Thunder, heading into the season. Of course, Betances was eventually demoted, but he was still largely battling the same control issue he had with Empire State. Despite this, the Thunder put together some nice pitching performances in 2012. Their team 3.74 ERA was fourth lowest and they managed 7.3 strikeouts per nine innings and allowed just 95 homers.

Brett Marshall was the standout pitcher for Trenton this season, going 13-7 with a 3.52 ERA. He struck out 120 batters while walking just 53 and keeping opposing hitters to a .255 average. Unfortunately, the Thunder will need him to shake off an ugly August, where he went 2-3 with a 6.03 ERA and got smacked around for a .291 average. Shaeffer Hall was another solid arm for Trenton, going 910 with a 3.67 ERA, 100 Ks and just 41 walks. On a couple occasions he flirted with the rare minor league complete game.…

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Minor League Playoff Preview: Empire State Yankees v. Pawtucket Red Sox

Pitching:
Pitching was supposed to be the big story of the Empire State season – and it was – but not for the reasons we all expected. As the season went along, the only remaining member of the original rotation was Adam Warren, who is now in the Bronx. Still, the Yankees had a 3.86 ERA as a team, the sixth lowest in the International League and was in the top half of the league in most pitching categories. They combined that with one of the stronger defenses in the IL. The Yankees led the league in fielding percentage at .983, though Pawtucket owned an equally impressive .982 fielding percentage. Yankee catchers caught 31% of stolen base attempts, but allowed a league leading 22 passed balls.

While the Yankees did not have the starting rotation we expected, they had plenty of strong arms filling in. Ramon Ortiz has been a dependable arm for the Yankees, going 13-6 with a 3.45 ERA, 4.10 FIP and .281 BABIP over 27 games.…

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The Farm Report: 9/3/12

Mesa went 2-5 with a run scored. Baker went 1-2 with a double and two RBIs. Michael O’Connor went three innings and gave up a run on three hits and a strikeout. Jon Meloan threw two hitless innings, walking a batter and striking out one. Francisco Rondon went 2.1 and gave up three runs on four hits, a walk and two Ks.

Trenton beat Binghamton 8-5:
The Mets took the lead in the bottom of the first, as Allan Dystra hit a RBI double to right and Eric Campbell followed with a sac fly for the 2-0 edge. They added another run in the bottom of the second, but the Thunder started their come back in the fourth. Adonis Garcia lead off with a single to left and Ramon Flores followed with his first Double-A homer, cutting the lead to one run. Trenton rallied in the sixth, as Walter Ibarra flew a double to left. Garcia and Flores grounded out, but Tyler Austin singled in Ibarra to tie the game.…

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