The grass at Ogren Park Allegiance Field is on schedule – the crew has the field looking like it’s ready to go for the season, and we’re only nearing mid-May. There’s 44 days before the home opener, 42 days (also known as six weeks) before the season opener, and a little over a month before we know who’s packing their bags for Missoula …
Today’s post will focus on former Osprey in the minors. We’ll get back to the mix of your Osprey Major and minor league nuggets tomorrow …
– Four pieces of minor-league roster news to pass along – outfielder Adam Eaton was activated from the 7-day DL over the weekend, and reilef pitcher Sammy De Los Santos was called up to Triple-A Reno from Extended Spring Training to help fill in as the Aces had a scheduled doubleheader with Salt Lake City. De Los Santos did not pitch, and was reassigned to Extended Spring (and to Yakima’s roster, for now) following the games. In addition, right-handed pitcher Josh Ellis (2007) was placed on the DL by the Mobile BayBears, and with the movement that took place in the organization, right-handed pitcher Keith Cantwell (2009) got the call to head to South Bend to join their bullpen.
– Paul Goldschmidt hit his 12th homer of the season this morning – gotta love the “Businessman’s Special” games in the minors – as Mobile was playing at Jacksonville. Entering the fifth inning, all five of the BayBears’ runs have come off of home runs by former Osprey. Goldie hit a three-run shot in the first, while Taylor Harbin hit a two-run tater in the fourth.
Back to Goldie – who is currently (up to the minute!) hitting .350, with 12 homers and 32 RBIs. The homers tie him with Willy Mo Pena of the Reno Aces for the minor-league lead, while he is also now tied with Pena for the D-backs’ organization lead in RBIs. He entered Monday’s action leading all of Double-A in on-base (.492) and slugging percentage (.742).
Minor League Update – quick former Osprey review:
– Triple-A Reno (19-11): There were seven former Osprey on the Aces roster to start the season, but most of them have been moved for various reasons, including up (Esmerling Vasquez), out (John Hester, to Baltimore), and down (Clay Zavada and Josh Ellis to Double-A Mobile). Three pitchers remain – LHP Tom Layne (2007), who is now 3-1 with a 6.41 ERA, down from somewhere around 9 early in April; LHP Jordan Norberto (2006), who is 2-1 with a save and a 4.40 ERA, and while he has 17 Ks in 14 1/3 innings pitched, he also has 11 walks; and RHP Daniel Stange (2006), who while he’s also having an issue with walks (10, to go with 14 Ks in 17 innings pitched), has also overcome a slow start, to the tune of a 2-0 mark and a 3.71 ERA.
– Double-A Mobile (17-11): Other than Goldie (3 HR in 4 games since we changed back to Goldie. Not that we take credit for anything like that …), there have been other BayBears whom have had strong starts to the 2011 season. On the pitching front, right-handers Jarrod Parker (2-2, 7.43) and Bryan Henry (2007) (3-1, 6.31) have had their struggles, while Charles Brewer (2009), provided he can keep from hitting the roof of the dugout with his head, will be a solid anchor in the BayBears’ rotation, posting a 2-1 record with a 3.21 ERA in his three starts, including a complete game. The relief corps is buoyed by the returning Clay Zavada (0-0, 2.16), who, like Parker, is coming off of Tommy John surgery (and on a faster time table), and Bryan Shaw (2008) on the back end, who has been stellar during the first month-plus (2-0, 6 saves, 1.15 ERA). At the plate, while both Taylor Harbin (2007, .309) and Jake Elmore (2008, .309) have cooled off, both entered today’s “Businessman’s Special” with Jacksonville over .300. So is Ollie Linton, whom after his first-inning single today, raised his average to .340.
– Class A Advanced Visalia (15-16): The Rawhide were cooled off a bit by Modesto, but have risen back to near .500 after a slow start. The pitching is slowly starting to come around, but the surprises continue to be a pair of non-drafted free agents – Taylor Sinclair (2008), who has moved into the bullpen and done well (2-0, 1 sv., 2.16 ERA, 1.02 WHIP) and Victor Capellan (2009) who has been a solid finisher for the Rawhide (four GF’s, second on club, with a 2.60 ERA and 22 Ks in 17 1/3 innings pitched). At the plate, the prospect meter level has raised on catcher Rossmel Perez (2008), who is regarded as a player who has the defensive tools and game-calling ability to play in the Major Leagues, but who does not possess a lot of power. However, when you hit .359 and can put together a respectible .880 OPS, it opens eyes.
Class A South Bend (12-17): The Silver Hawks are starting to figure it out … it also helps that Fort Wayne, who was one of the best teams in all of the minors last season, is in the opposite end of the spectrum this season, and the Hawks have their number, of sorts. The Hawks have won 5 of 9 against the Caps, and take away the first three games, all losses, South Bend has won five of the last six against Fort Wayne. Since joining the Hawks, Ender Inciarte (2009) has hit .467 in eight games, while Raywilly Gomez (2009) continues to be steady at the plate, hitting .289 while catching most of the 22 games he has played this season. One of the more impressive preformers has been Bradin Hagens (2009), who is making the transition from reliever to starter, and after a slow start, has settled down. In five starts, Hagens (who is scheduled to pitch tonight in South Bend against Fort Wayne) is 1-1 with a 3.91 ERA, and has only allowed six earned runs in his last four starts (2.89 ERA).
There are just 46 days before the season opens (and 48 days before the Opsrey home opener, with the living forms of the mascot already claiming their season tickets) and the signs are already going up around the outfield wall, which means things are starting to take shape at Ogren Park at Allegiance Field.
– A good piece on Goldie through the eyes of his hitting coach the past two seasons, Alan Zinter (2008 Osprey), as well as a scout that sees the improvements in his swing. Notice the change in Paul Goldschmidt’s nickname. Wonder how long that will last …
– How about one touch of the “enter” key … here’s the Snakepit report on Goldschmidt, and other former Osprey. Notice the spelling of the nickname … maybe we need to make a poll of this …
– Here’s a first-month review of the D-backs, including the encouraging start of former Osprey catcher Miguel Montero.
– Quick quiz – entering May, who lead the Colorado Rockies in wins and strikeouts? Ubaldo? Nope … former Osprey pitcher Jorge De La Rosa (1999-2000).
– The D-backs also made a minor-league roster move, sending Evan Frey to Triple-A Reno, and calling up former Osprey infielder Kyle Greene (2008) to Mobile. Greene was hitting .273 with six doubles, three home runs and 10 RBIs at Class A Advanced Visalia before his promotion.
Minor League Report:
– Triple-A Reno: Aces lost to Las Vegas, 4-3. Tom Layne (2007) allowed just a hit in his lone inning of work, and struck out two batters.
– Double-A Mobile: The BayBears got Bryan Shaw (2008) off of the hook – he allowed an eighth-inning run that tied the game – with a walk-off, 4-3 win over Tennessee on Wednesday. Jarrod Parker (2007) had an up-and-down start, allowing just two runs and three hits in six innings, but walked five batters. Parker also picked up his first hit and run scored at the plate. Ollie Linton (2008) had two hits and a RBI, while Taylor Harbin (2007) added a double and a RBI. Goldschmidt was 0-for-1 with a run scored and three walks.
– Class A Advanced Visalia: David Nick (2009) doubled, while Rossmel Perez (2008) collected a base hit (he’s now hitting .380), scored a run and plated another as the Rawhide beat San Jose, 6-2. Visalia has now won four of the past five games. Taylor Sinclair (2008) worked two innings, allowing one run, and Adam Worthington (2009) pitched a scoreless ninth inning out of the Visalia bullpen.
– Class A South Bend: The SilverHawks picked up a nice 4-1 win on the road at Dayton on Wednesday. Bradin Hagens (2009) went four-plus innings, was a victim of control issues – allowing four walks – but scattered five hits and allowed just a run. Blake Cooper (2010) pitched the final two innings to pick up his fourth save of the season. Other former Osprey were all over the 13-hit Hawks attack – Raywilly Gomez (2009) had two hits and two RBIs, Ender Inciarte (2009) had three hits, and Matt Helm (2009-10) added a triple and a run scored. Chris Jarrett (2010) singled, walked twice and scored a run, while Bobby Stone (2008-10) added a base knock.
Today’s probables (and former Osprey who are due to start):
AAA Reno (16-10) at Las Vegas
AA Mobile (16-9) vs. Tennessee
A Adv. Visalia (13-14) vs. San Jose – Mike Belfiore (2009) gets the start for the Rawhide.
A South Bend (9-16) at Dayton – JR Bradley (2010) gets the call for the Hawks tonight.
51 days until the home opener, 49 days until the season opener. We were going to write something cute here, but it’s Monday … however, the Osprey salute our troops all around the world who are willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice to keep us free.
– John Hester is no longer in the D-backs organization. Hester, who caught for the 2006 Pioneer League Champion Osprey, was the “player to be named later” in the deal that sent Mark Reynolds to Baltimore. So Hester is now an Oriole, and heads to Norfolk of the International League.
– Good news on many of the DL guys (Chase Anderson and Charles Brewer (both 2009) …), but not-so-good news on Adam Eaton. “Spank” apparently took a pitch to the head and had symptoms of a concussion afterwards. He’s now out another week. The good news underneath the madness – Keon Broxton (2009) will fill in for Eaton in Visalia, and Ender Inciarte (2009) moves from Extended Spring Training to the South Bend roster.
– Lyle Overbay (1999) snapped out of a slump to help the Pirates win on Sunday.
– Cool story on former Osprey reliever Evan Scribner (2007), who made his Major League debut last week with the San Diego Padres.
– Interesting story on South Bend’s new playing surface. During the season, someone should e-mail Ben Catley (or now …) about his first experience with this type of surface – way back in 1994.
– Check out Joe Koschanky’s line in this extra-inning game. So if three strikeouts for a batter is a hat trick, and four is a golden sombrero (with five being platinum), what is seven Ks? We know what eight is – a Russ Laribee (more on Panel 2 of the linked story).
– Triple-A Reno: Tom Layne (2007) allowed just a run on three hits and a walk in 3 1/3 innings of relief to pick up the win for the Aces in a 10-8 decision over Tacoma on Sunday. Layne moved to 2-1 with the decision and lowered his ERA to 8.24.
– Double-A Mobile: Four former Osprey had at least one hit in the BayBears’ 6-4 win over Birmingham on Sunday. Paul Goldschmidt (2009) went 1-for-4 with a walk, as his average is now .347 for the season. Taylor Harbin (2007) went 2-for-5 with an RBI, while both Ollie Linton and Jake Elmore (both 2008 Osprey) had a hit and a run scored each. All four are hitting over .300 at the moment. Goldschmidt, by the way, also stole his third base of the season. Bryan Henry (2007) struggled in the start, but Bryan Shaw (2008) closed the door in the end, and his two innings of two-hit, three-strikeout scoreless relief netted his fifth save of the season.
– Class A Advanced Visalia: Eric Smith (2009) pitched well enough to get the win, while the Rawhide scored seven runs in the fourth inning to take down a 12-7 win over Modesto on Sunday. Diogenes Rosario (2009) and Taylor Sinclair (2008) pitched 2 2/3 innings of scoreless relief behind Smith, who went six-plus innings to pick up the win. Bobby Borchering (2009) had two hits, including a three-run homer, while Keon Broxton (2009) had two hits and two runs scored. Rossmel Perez (2008) doubled and drove in a run, while Kyle Greene (2008) also had a hit for Visalia, who is 2-0 since manager Jason Hardtke (2009-10 hitting coach) was ejected in Friday’s one-run loss.
– Class A South Bend: Matt Helm (2009-10) had three hits and a RBI, while Ender Inciarte (2009) had three hits, a stolen base and a run scored in his SilverHawks’ debut as South Bend scored four times in the sixth and twice more in the seventh to earn an 8-5 win over Great Lakes. Bobby Stone (2008-10) doubled and scored twice, while Raywilly Gomez (2009) singled and walked twice in the win. The bullpen bailed out David Holmberg (2010), who struggled a bit, while Blake Cooper (2010) notched his third save with a scoreless ninth inning.
Todays’ Schedule (and fomer Osprey making starts):
AAA Reno (15-8) at Las Vegas
AA Mobile (14-8) at Birmingham
A Adv. Visalia (11-13) vs. Modesto. Derek Eitel (2010) gets the start tonight for the Rawhide.
A South Bend (8-14) vs. Great Lakes. Jeff Shields (2010) gets the ball tonight for the Hawks.
We enter today with 57 days until the home opener, 55 days until the season opener, and about a month before the next big event at Ogren Park Allegiance Field – the annual Missoula Mavs Memorial Day Tournament.
– Gerardo Parra homered to help back Ian Kennedy’s solid pitching as the D-backs beat the Philadelphia Phillies, and ace left-hander Cliff Lee, 4-0 on Monday.
– You have to check out the photos of former Osprey reliever Jose Valverde in the gallery for this story, done after the Detroit Tigers swept the Chicago White Sox over the weekend. One thing is for certain, he does not hide his emotions.
Oh … and apparently, he also has a ritual before he pitches, too:
– Former Osprey first baseman Lyle Overbay was due to have his first night off of the season on Monday, after playing in the first 21 games of the season, but ended up serving as a pinch-hitter late in the game. For the season, Overbay is hitting .259 with five doubles, a home run and 10 RBIs.
– Here’s a little feature piece on former Osprey outfielder Scott Hairston. Notice the slight mistake at the beginning of the piece … gotta love blogs …
Daily Minors Update:
– Triple-A Reno: Daniel Stange and Jordan Norberto combined for 2 1/3 innings of shutout relief, and John Hester’s sacrifice fly plated a run as the Aces beat Fresno, 6-2. Stange picked up the win. All three played in Missoula in 2006.
– Double-A Mobile: The BayBears let a 5-1 lead slip away, but won at Jackson in 12 innings, 7-5. Bryan Shaw (2008) pitched the final three innings to pick up his first win of the season. Shaw allowed a hit, walked two and struck out two in lowering his ERA to 0.84 for the season. Paul Goldschmidt (2009) went 1-for-3 with three walks and three runs scored.
– Class A Advanced Visalia: Mike Belfiore (2009) had one of his roughest outings as a pro – walking eight batters while allowing two hits and three runs in three innings of work – but Taylor Sinclair (2008), Christian Beltre (2007) and Victor Capellan (2009) shut the door, combining for six shutout innings of relief in a 9-3 Rawhide win. David Nick (2009), Bobby Borchering (2009) and Rossmel Perez (2008) had two hits each, while Kyle Greene (2008) drove in a pair of runs for Visalia.
– Class A South Bend: David Holmberg (2010) was silly good on Monday night, but the SilverHawks lost to Bowling Green, 2-1. The Hawks had just four hits on the night, with Keon Broxton getting two of them and scoring the lone run. Broxton (2009) singled in the top of the second, and scored on a Chris Jarrett (2010) RBI triple. The other hit came from Ramon Castillo (2009), who was making his first start behind the plate, and committed a pair of throwing errors that led to both Hot Rod runs. Holmberg allowed four hits and a walk in seven innings of work, struck out 12 and picked off two runners.
Today’s Games (and probable Osprey pitchers):
AAA Reno (12-6) at Fresno
AA Mobile (12-6) at Jackson
A Adv. Visalia (7-11) at Bakersfield – Eric Smith (2009) seeks his first win of the season tonight.
A South Bend (5-12) at Bowling Green
First update of the weekend … yup, we’re keeping the machine going even on the weekend these days. Have to warm up for the season somehow, right??
– Triple-A Reno: Aces picked up a 6-5 win over Sacramento on Friday. John Hester had two doubles, the second of which drove in the game-tying and game-winning RBIs in the bottom of the 9th. With the 2-for-4 night, Hester moved his average above the .200 mark, to .207.
– Double A Mobile: Paul Goldschmidt had one official at-bat last night against Jacksonville – he walked three times and scored a run – and Taylor Harbin snapped a two-game hitless run with a 2-for-4 night to push his batting average back to .400. But it was Jake Elmore who had the star line of the night among the former Osprey, with a single and a pair of doubles in the BayBears’ 6-3 win. Jarrod Parker pitched well enough – three runs allowed in five innings, with three walks and four strikeouts – to pick up his first win, while Bryan Shaw notched his fourth save of the season.
– Class A Advanced Visalia: Kyle Green doubled and homered, while Bobby Borchering had two hits in the 6-5 Rawhide win over San Jose. Trevor Harden pitched six solid innings, and Victor Capellan pitched a shutout inning of relief for Visalia.
– Class A South Bend: The SilverHawks had their game with Fort Wayne postponed due to rain. The two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday.
AAA Reno (10-5) – at Fresno
AA Mobile (10-5) – at Jackson
A Adv. Visalia (6-10) – at San Jose
A South Bend (4-10) will play two vs. Fort Wayne. Bradin Hagens (0-1) gets the Game 1 start, while JR Bradley (0-2) will get the call for Game 2 for the Hawks.
The Osprey will be hosting a Kids Tryour to sing the National Anthem and ‘America The Beautiful’ during the Kid Fair on March 12 at Southgate Mall. Full details on the tryout can be found here, and more information about the Osprey at the kids fair – including an Ollie appearance – can be found here.
Now on to the alumnus of your Missoula Osprey …
– Carlos Gonzalez talked to the MLB Network as part of their “30 Clubs in 30 Days” series, and is excited about not only the 2011 season, but being a long-term Colorado Rockie.
– Before you pen Paul Goldschmidt into the Active Roster for the Arizona Diamondbacks come April, well … read what manager Kirk Gibson told Steve Gilbert of MLB.com on Wednesday. Goldy is making it hard to not be “in the mix” though, with a two-run pinch-hit single yesterday. Arizona Republic reporter Nick Piecoro added some other thoughts to the situation.
– Also from Piecoro, video of two former Osprey taking batting practice: 2009 alums Chris Owings and Bobby Borchering. Both are in big league camp as minor league invitees.
– You can add Charles Brewer and Bryan Shaw to the list of minor-league players with Missoula ties invited to big league camp. Brewer and Shaw were both listed as backups for the Cactus League game last night with the San Francisco Giants.
– Minor-league camp opens this weekend, and there are some players who have already reported to the complex and started their preparations for the 2011 season. Most of those players are a month away from reporting to their full-season destinations, while others will begin the grind of Extended Spring Training.