by Ben Catley
94 days before the Season Opener and Home Opener
Well, the Major League Baseball season starts in two weeks. Yup, two weeks. I will let that set in for a moment …
Can you only imagine how this will all play out? No matter where your allegiances lie, there is plenty of intrigue about to play out all over the place.
Except in Center Field and at the top of the order for the Arizona Diamondbacks, where it is looking more and more like Adam Eaton (2010 Osprey) has taken full advantage of his opportunity and locked down that job. Eaton was featured in a MiLB Prospect Q&A recently, sharing a number of things, especially the reason why he doesn’t mind being a magnet for baseballs while he is at-bat. By the way, Eaton is hitting .358 this spring, with a pair of home runs and nine RBIs. Continue reading
by Ben Catley
The end of February is here, and as the World Baseball Classic gets underway beginning tomorrow, it leaves us with more time to focus on what should be an interesting couple of weeks at Arizona Diamondbacks camp. Three mainstays for the D-backs – Gerardo Parra (2006 Osprey), Miguel Montero (2002-03) and newly-acquired Martin Prado will play for Venezuela, as will former Osprey outfielder Carlos Gonzalez (2003).
Parra was held out of Wednesday’s game against Cincinnati with soreness in his left arm. Nothing serious, and he should be back in the lineup when the D-backs play today. Parra also has received some advice from manager Kirk Gibson as it pertains to his two early errors in Cactus League play … and some of it has to do with his new glove.
by Ben Catley
This is one of the best times of the year … and one of the craziest.
Baseball is back, and the Spring Training games have begun. Which involves a couple of things … for one, highlights on Baseball Tonight and Sportscenter. It also becomes hectic for a bit every three years, because the madness starts a few days early due to the World Baseball Classic.
Why it is crazy? The monitoring of former Osprey en masse starts a lot earlier, too. Continue reading
Here’s some stuff to pass along from the past couple of days to get your Osprey fix in before the team is announced this week …
– A total of four former Osprey – at the moment – have been named to mid-season All-Star teams. While the California-Carolina All-Star Game teams, and the Triple-A All-Star teams (you can still vote if you haven’t used up your 25-vote limit here.) are yet to be decided, other games (which are earlier) have been … and three of the four are pitchers – Chase Anderson (2009) in the Southern League, and Archie Bradley (2011) and Kable Hogben (2009) in the Midwest League. The lone position player (so far) is Matt Helm (2009-10) in the Midwest League. Anderson pitches at Double-A Mobile, while the other three are playing in South Bend.
– Paul Goldschmidt (2009) moved his hit streak to 17 games with a single in a three-run first inning as the Arizona Diamondbacks won their fifth in a row on Sunday, finishing off a three-game sweep of the Oakland A’s, 4-3. However, it was a series full of former Osprey appearances. Outside of Goldy, Miguel Montero (2002-03) hit a grand slam to highlight Saturday’s win, Bryan Shaw (2008) pitched out of the D-backs bullpen, Evan Scribner (2007) pitched well out of the A’s bullpen on Sunday, and Jarrod Parker (2007) made the start on Friday and threw well. In addition, let’s not forget about Gerardo Parra (2006) and Lyle Overbay (1999) of the D-backs and the DL’ed Jordan Norberto (2006) of the A’s. That’s eight of the 36 former Osprey who have played in the Major Leagues.
– Congratulations to former Osprey pitcher Conrad Flynn (2011), who proudly showed off his diploma from Tulane University on his Facebook page over the weekend. Flynn is currently with his third team, the Class A Advanced Visalia Rawhide, this season. Flynn has also pitched for Triple-A Reno (one spot-start) and Double-A Mobile (four appearances, two starts). He will start for the Rawhide tonight against Lake Elsinore.
In some other transactions involving former Osprey:
– Taylor Siemens (2011) was promoted from Class A South Bend to Class A Advanced Visalia. Siemens had been primarily used as a reliever for the Silver Hawks.
– Kyle Greene (2008) was taken off of the 7-day DL and returned to Double-A Mobile. Greene had been hitting well at the plate when the injury occurred.
– David Holmberg (2010) was promoted from Class A Advanced Visalia to Double-A Mobile. The left-hander has been moving up the prospect radar steadily over the past year, and will now get a look in the ultra-talented Southern League.
by Ben Catley
OK, so after I had this all written, and set to post at a certain time, it would be helpful to not to change the year. Better late than never, I guess. So now that I have figured that out … let’s not hide all of this until next year, shall we. Especially this part …
36 days until Opening Night at home, 32 days until Opening Day in Billings Continue reading
by Ben Catley
So I am watching MLB.tv on Sunday, catching the tail end of the D-backs game, and on the mound in the ninth inning, during a mound visit, were three Osprey – pitcher Bryan Shaw (2008), catcher Miguel Montero (2002-03) and first baseman Lyle Overbay (1999). A fourth, outfielder Gerardo Parra (2006), was in left field. And a fifth, Paul Goldschmidt (2009), had just pinch-hit a half-inning prior.
Yes, I was smiling.
I smiled even more when Shaw blew a 94 mile-per-hour fastball past Buster Posey to finish off his first Major League save, capping off a D-backs comeback of epic proportions, rallying down from 6-0 down to win, 7-6, and finish off a sweep of the San Francisco Giants in their 2012 Opening Series at Chase Field.
Overbay doubled twice and homered – a tape-measure shot, by the way – and drove in three runs to lead the charge.
It caps off what was a great week to be a former Osprey. Well, for a good number of them, anyway. Continue reading
Earlier with this than usual … but we’re trying to get the docket cleared so that we can focus on more stat analysis, and other things of note.
So … on with the show ….
|The Skinny: The Osprey, who have won five in a row, seven of eight and eight of their last nine at home, continue a three-game series with the Idaho Falls Chukars, who had a three-game win streak snapped on Monday by Missoula. The Osprey also will attempt to clinch the Pioneer League North Division First-Half title with either a win or a Billings loss.
Last Time Out: The Osprey were glad to see Brian Peacock leave the game on Monday night at Ogren Park Allegiance Field, and celebrated with a four-run seventh inning to beat the Idaho Falls Chukars, 4-1, and clinch at least a tie for the Pioneer League North Division First-Half title. The 2,021 fans in attendance watched quite the pitcher’s duel for six innings, as Peacock – who had held Missoula hitless for a 10-inning stretch in two appearances, spanning two seasons – was at it again on Monday, baffling Osprey hitters to the tune of allowing just four hits and a walk while striking out seven. Taylor Siemens nearly equaled his left-handed counterpart, allowing just two hits and a walk in five innings of work, but Darian Sandford hit a bloop single to lead off the third inning, stole second base, moved to third on a fly ball and scored on a wild pitch to give the Chukars (15-19) a 1-0 lead.
That score held up until the home half of the seventh, when the Idaho Falls bullpen was called upon to hold the Osprey in check. Stephen Cardullo induced a leadoff walk from reliever Robert Penny (1-4), moved to second on a ground ball and scored on Ty Linton’s RBI single to knot the game at 1-all. Linton then rode home on Fidel Pena’s two-run home run to deep right field, giving the Osprey the lead for good. Missoula would add a run on a double steal by Josh Parr and Chris Ellison. Parr scored when Chukars catcher Edul Escobar threw off target to third base, allowing Parr to score and give the Osprey the 4-1 lead.
Conrad Flynn (3-1) pitched three innings of two-hit relief, striking out a pair of batters along the way to pick up the win, while DJ Johnson pitched around a two-out walk in the ninth to collect his second save of the season.
The streak continues … : Eric Groff extended his current hitting streak to 13 straight games with a double in the bottom of the second inning, then added another double in the fourth. During the 13-game streak, Groff is 23-for-53 at the plate (.434), with seven doubles, a triple, six home runs and 15 RBIs. Groff has also collected seven multi-hit games during what is now his longest career hitting streak. Groff put together a 10-game streak from June 23-July 6 earlier this season.
On the Mound Today: Missoula will send out right-hander Dexter Price, to the mound as they look to clinch the Pioneer League North Division First-Half title. Price (1-0, 6.26) has been splendid since giving up seven runs in a July 4 start at Billings. In three appearances since, including one start, Price has allowed just three runs in 11 innings of work (2.45 ERA), allowing just four hits and two walks while fanning 11 batters. Price will be followed by Raymond Hernandez, who held the league lead in ERA until he fell out of qualifying – and teammate Taylor Siemens (1.95) took over the lead following his start on Monday. The Chukars counter tonight with left-hander Brennon Martin, who is still trying to recover from a rough outing on July 9 at Orem, in which he allowed 10 runs (seven earned). In two starts against Helena, Martin went 1-1 with a 4.09 ERA, winning his road start in his latest outing. He has the capability to go deep into a game – in two June starts (1-0, 3.21) Martin pitched seven innings in each outing.
Stat of the Day: Former Osprey infielder Emilio Bonifacio (2003) is currently enjoying a 23-game hit streak for the Florida Marlins. Florida did not play on Monday. Bonifacio is hitting .386 (34-for-88) during the hitting streak, which is the third-longest in Marlins history, and the second-longest hit streak in the Major Leagues this season (Andre Ethier, 30 gms.).
Osprey Alumni Update/Minor League Report:
The DSL D-backs (18-30) beat the DSL Twins on Monday, 11-1. Alan Santiago (2009) was held hitless, but still drove in a run, his 19th of the season. Santiago has tailed off a bit at the plate, as his average has fallen to .237 on the season.
Yakima (13-25) dropped a 9-3 decision to Tri-City on Monday. Westley Moss (2011), Raul Navarro (2010) and David Narodowski (2009) each had a base hit for the Bears.
South Bend (12-18, 46-53) lost to Kane County on Monday, 4-2. Matt Helm (2009-10) homered in the setback for the Silver Hawks, while Kable Hogben (2009) and Eury De La Rosa (2009) combined for three shutout innings of one-hit relief.
Visalia (12-20, 43-58) fell to San Jose, 8-6, on Monday. Chris Owings (2009) had two hits and a run scored, while Bobby Borchering (2009) hit a three-run homer in a five-run, ninth-inning rally that fell short. David Nick (2009) added a hit and a RBI, while Rossmel Perez (2008) and Keon Broxton (2009) added base hits for the Rawhide, who also received two scoreless innings of relief from left-hander Mike Belfiore (2009).
Mobile (22-8, 60-40) had an off-day on Monday. The BayBears start a five-game series at Mississippi on Tuesday.
Reno (61-41) was rocked by Sacramento on Monday, 10-1. Tom Layne (2007) surrendered eight runs on nine hits and four walks in six innings of work to suffer the loss.