About Last Night
The offense awoke for Bowling Green, and after scoring just seven runs in four games at West Michigan, the Hot Rods amassed 10 runs on 15 hits in a 10-2 win in the series opener at Lake County. Juniel Querecuto set the tone early with a lead-off home run. He fell a triple short of the cycle while Alexander Simon was just a home run shy of the cycle, tying a Hot Rods season-high with four hits. He also drove in three. Armando Araiza blasted a two-run home run that extended the lead to 9-1 in the sixth to help seal the victory.
RHP Ryne Stanek: The 29th overall pick in the 2013 draft and Midwest League All-Star makes his ninth pro start tonight. His first came right here in Classic Park, when he allowed just one run in five innings on May 8. He was selected by Tampa Bay out of the University of Arkansas, where he dominated Southeastern Conference competition for three seasons. Stanek was the Pre-Season SEC Pitcher of the Year entering his junior campaign, and finished as a Baseball America All-American after recording 10 wins and a 1.39 ERA in 16 starts. Stanek was even more impressive against SEC competition, posting an ERA of 0.86. He finished his Razorback career sixth in school history with 22 wins. Stanek was originally selected in the third round out of Blue Valley High School in Stilwell, Kansas by the Seattle Mariners, but elected to sign with Arkansas.
RHP Mitch Brown: Brown was chosen with the 79th overall pick in 2012 out of Rochester, MN., where he starred for Century High School. Brown was good in his ‘12 season with the AZL Indians (3.58 ERA in eight starts) but struggled last season. This year, after a bad April (6.10 ERA), Brown has been steadily improving. He posted a 3.99 mark in May, and was even better in June as Brown went 1-0 with a 1.71 ERA in five outings. Free base runners have been a major problem for Brown, he owns 41 free passes in just 76.1 innings. He started against the Hot Rods on May 9 and allowed just one run on four hits before being removed in the sixth inning. He left with a 10-1 lead, but BG would rally to tie the game before losing 11-10 in extra-innings.
Power is Contagious
It took Juniel Querecuto parts of four seasons and 1,065 at-bats to blast his first home run. He didn’t have to wait nearly that long for his second, as it came last night and just 19 at-bats after his first. Querecuto amassed three hits last night, and entered his third at-bat of the game having hit safely in six consecutive plate appearances. The surge has “Q” flirting with .300, he enters tonight sporting a .297 average in 66 games. He’s batting .424 (14-33) with two homers and seven RBIs since his second half began on 6/19.
Snapping It Not So Quietly
Alexander Simon entered last night’s game in a 1-22 slump that saw his batting average drop from .292 to .268, but he snapped out of it in a big way by collecting four hits to tie a Hot Rods season-high. Thanks to his efforts last night, Simon is now batting .354 against left-handers.
About Last Night
With the bullpen needing rest, Bruedlin Suero came through in his first start for the Hot Rods of the season. He surrendered just one run over seven innings, but the lone run would be enough for West Michigan who held on to win, 1-0. Suero needed just 70 pitches, and at one time, he had retired 14 batters in a row. Kean Wong and Johnny Field each collected multi-hit games, but the offense stranded seven men on base and amassed only one hit in 10 at-bats with runners in scoring position. Colton Reavis worked a scoreless eighth, but the combination of Jonathon Crawford, Montreal Robertson, and Julio Felix hurled the shutout for West Michigan.
LHP Ben Griset: Griset joined Bowling Green after appearing five times out of the bullpen with Advanced-A Port Charlotte. He was effective in his BG debut on 5/29 against Fort Wayne, as he scattered seven hits over five innings and allowed just two runs. He hasn’t allowed more than two earned runs in three of his four starts so far with BG. Griset worked four consecutive scoreless appearances before being assigned to BG. His last outing with Port Charlotte came back on May 23, when he tossed three shutout frames at Lakeland with three strikeouts. The left-hander was with current manager Michael Johns last year in Hudson Valley, posting a 3-3 record and a 3.41 ERA in 14 starts. He was selected in the 13th round of the 2013 draft out of St. Mary’s, where he won four games his junior season with a 3.62 ERA.
RHP Buck Farmer: In addition to having one of the best names in the Midwest League, George “Buck” Farmer has piled up the strikeouts this season as well. He leads the circuit with 94 strikeouts in his 75.2 innings through 13 starts. Farmer owns a 3.33 ERA and a 6-5 record this season, and he is part of a loaded Whitecaps pitching arsenal. The Tigers selected Farmer in the fifth round of last year’s draft out of Georgia Tech, and he posted a 3.09 ERA in 12 games with short-season Connecticut after signing. He was a four-year player as a Yellow Jacket, and he won 33 games over four seasons and amassed 387 strikeouts as a collegian.
Can’t Get Much Better
How steady has Kean Wong been this season? After his two-hit night in the opener, Wong pushed his June batting average to .329. He batted .346 in April, and .307 in May. The 19-year old has surpassed expectations after going straight from the GCL last season to the full-season level. He’s been a match-up nightmare, especially as of late. Wong holds a .330 average against righties, but also a .311 mark against fellow left-handers.
Ariel Soriano quickly became a fan favorite at Bowling Green Ballpark, and since his promotion to Advanced-A Port Charlotte, Soriano seems to be winning over fans with the Stonecrabs as well. He collected two hits and drove in three runs last night, giving him seven hits and six runs batted in with Charlotte, and he’s done so in just five games. Soriano batted .250 but with 13 doubles and 16 RBIs in 33 games with Bowling Green before his promotion.
About Last Night
A solid pitching matchup turned into a wild contest later on, but the Hot Rods were able to hold off the Lugnuts, 4-3. Bowling Green broke a 1-1 tie in the eighth on a fielder’s choice RBI by Johnny Field, and they added two more in the ninth on a double by Yoel Araujo and single by Alexander Simon. It looked to be plenty with a 4-1 lead, but Lansing plated two in the bottom of the ninth, and brought the tying run to the plate twice before the game concluded. Chris Kirsch tossed six-strong innings, allowing just one run. His counterpart, Chase De Jong, also allowed just one run across over six frames.
RHP Jaime Schultz: Schultz fell to the Rays in the 14th round of last year’s draft out of High Point (N.C.), and they gladly picked him with the 428th overall pick. He tied the Hot Rods franchise record with 12 strikeouts in just his second start on 5/28, matching Matt Moore and Braulio Lara. With a fastball that tops out at 97 MPH, Schultz graded as a reliever, but he has made the transition to the rotation and will make his fifth start tonight. Injury delayed his debut this season, and Tommy John surgery in 2011 helped him fall to the 14th round. He went 1-2 with a 3.05 ERA in 17 games (10 starts) for Hudson Valley last year, striking out 55 batters in 44.1 innings. Schultz owns the franchise record for most strikeouts for a Hot Rod in their first three starts, as he fanned 29 through just 15.0 innings. In his last start, Schultz allowed just two runs (one earned) over six innings while striking out eight.
RHP Jeremy Gabryszwski: Gabryszwski was selected with the 78th overall pick in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft out of Crosby High School in Texas. On the year Gabryszwski has compiled a 3.25 ERA in 14 starts, and last time he faced BG, he allowed three runs over five innings in a no-decision. Gabryszwski hasn’t allowed more than two earned runs in a start since May 25 when he faced South Bend. With Vancouver last season, Gabryszwski went 5-2 with a 2.82 ERA in 14 starts. He was selected two picks after Hot Rods outfielder, Granden Goetzman, and went to the same high school as former Houston Astros catcher, J.R. Towles. Gabryszwski will be looking for his 12th win as a professional this afternoon.
Above .290, Who Woulda’ Thought?
Alexander Simon did not enjoy the start to his season, and he was batting just .061 nearly three weeks in. However, his turnaround has been remarkable. Since April 21, Simon is batting .335 (56-167) which places him fourth in the entire Midwest League during that stretch. After going 2-4 last night, Simon has soared his batting average to it’s highest point of .292 entering today’s game.
Speaking of the Midwest League Leaderboard…
Kean Wong collected two more hits last night, and after back-to-back multi-hit games to start the second half, Wong is right back in the Midwest League batting crown race. His average of .323 places him third on the circuit entering today, and he has cut the lead of Beloit’s Herschel Powell to just 12 points. He trails second-place Wynton Bernard by just seven points.
About Last Night
Lansing got revenge for Thursday night’s game with an 8-3 victory in the second game of the series last night. Knuckeballer Frank Viola conceded his first runs of the season, but he only allowed two in five innings to earn his second victory. Kean Wong and Armando Araiza recorded multi-hit days but the Hot Rods offense struggled to get going. Ben Griset was pulled in the fifth, but four more runs crossed after he exited the ballgame. Lansing’s Derrick Loveless homered and drove in three runs as part of a two-hit night.
LHP Chris Kirsch: The Chester, Pa. native bounced back after a rough outing on 6/7. He limited Fort Wayne to just one unearned run over five innings, the same team that scored six (four earned) against him six days earlier. Kirsch hadn’t allowed a run in nearly 19.0 innings before conceding against Fort Wayne on 6/7, as he tossed back-to-back seven-shutout frame outings. He hasn’t conceded more than three earned runs in seven of his 11 starts, and he established a 2.23 ERA in 36.1 innings in the month of May. Kirsch owns a 3.18 mark in June so far. He was a 14th round selection by the Rays in 2012 out of Lackawanna (Pa.) College, and he excelled in the Hudson Valley rotation last season. Kirsch went 4-3 with a 2.94 ERA in 16 starts with the Renegades, ranking amongst the New York-Penn League leaders with 82.2 innings pitched and his sparkling ERA.
RHP Chase De Jong: De Jong is yet another high draft choice found on the Lugnuts roster, as he was selected in the second round (81st overall) in the 2012 draft. He made his professional debut in 2012 in the GCL, working 12.0 innings in six contests. Last season, he hurled in the Appalachian League with Bluefield, recording a 2-3 record in 13 games (10 starts) with a 3.05 ERA and 66 strikeouts in 56.0 innings. De Jong has experienced a rough spell as of late, as he’s allowed at least four runs in five consecutive starts. His last time out on 6/11, he allowed seven runs (three earned) at Fort Wayne. On the year, he has conceded 27 earned runs in 51.1 innings. The numbers aren’t highly alarming (14 walks, .282 opponent average) but his ERA is approaching five at 4.73.
Belated Birthday Boy
Armando Araiza celebrated his 21st birthday on Thursday, but did not play. He made up for it last night with a pair of hits and a double. The outing extended his hitting streak to five games. During that stretch, Araiza is 9-20 with two doubles and two RBIs. His catching partner Oscar Hernandez has hit all five of his home runs at home, but Araiza has blasted all five of his homers on the road. Araiza has enjoyed his birthday month as well, as he enters tonight with a .310 (13-42) average with three extra-base hits and six runs batted in.
Kean Wong returned from the All-Star game on Wednesday, but he saw his first game action of the second half last night. He produced another multi-hit night, and he’s now tallied 23 two-or-more hit nights this season. Wong’s .320 average places him in a tie for fourth in the Midwest League with his teammate, Granden Goetzman.
About Last Night
Offense was what highlighted the end of the first half for the Hot Rods, and it once again was the storyline to start the second half. Bowling Green pounded out 15 hits after producing 22 on Sunday in a 10-4 win to open second-half play. The 37 hits in the past two games is a franchise record for the Hot Rods. Oscar Hernandez produced four hits and drove in four runs, while Juniel Querecuto and Spencer Edwards each amassed three hits. Luis Cabrera tossed two and two-thirds innings of scoreless relief in his return to BG, while Jorge Rodriguez picked up the victory.
LHP Ben Griset: Griset joined Bowling Green after appearing five times out of the bullpen with Advanced-A Port Charlotte. He was effective in his BG debut on 5/29 against Fort Wayne, as he scattered seven hits over five innings and allowed just two runs. He hasn’t allowed more than two earned runs in any of his three starts so far with BG. Griset worked four consecutive scoreless appearances before being assigned to BG. His last outing with Port Charlotte came back on May 23, when he tossed three shutout frames at Lakeland with three strikeouts. The left-hander was with current manager Michael Johns last year in Hudson Valley, posting a 3-3 record and a 3.41 ERA in 14 starts. He was selected in the 13th round of the 2013 draft out of St. Mary’s, where he won four games his junior season with a 3.62 ERA.
RHP Frank Viola III: The son of 1988 NL Cy Young Award holder Frank Viola, Violla III turned 30 yesterday and is the eldest player in the Midwest League. Before this season, he hadn’t pitched in the affiliated ranks since 2007 when he was a member of the White Sox organization. He was a 29th round pick, but was released by Chicago after the 2007 season. He toiled with injuries and Indy ball until he started working with Blue Jays hurler, R.A. Dickey. His development of a knuckleball has revitalized his career, and he hasn’t allowed a run in either of his two starts this season with Lansing, which spans 10.2 innings against Great Lakes. He pitched into the seventh his last time out in Midland, Mich., allowing eight hits but walking just two Loons batters.
Four is a Magic Number
Oscar Hernandez matched the Bowling Green season-high for hits in a game with four last night, and he’s joined Johnny Field and Armando Araiza in having accomplished the feat. Amazingly, Hernandez has done it three times and no other Hot Rod has done it more than once. His four knocks raised Hernandez’s batting average to .280, the highest it’s been all season.
Johnny Field extended his hitting streak to 11 games last night with two hits, and he has now hit safely in 18 of his last 20 contests. When that stretch began, Field was hitting the ball hard but seemingly right at defenders, but it has raised his average from .218 to .267. Field is ranked fourth in the Midwest League in runs (47) and doubles (19).
The Hot Rods closed out the first half on Sunday by busting out the bats, recording 22 hits en route to a 12-3 victory at Fort Wayne. The total fell one short of the franchise record of 23 set back in 2012. Bowling Green had four different players produce three or more hits, and all but one player had a multi-hit effort. Lost in the offensive explosion was the gem of Jaime Schultz, who kept his ERA under one by allowing just one earned in six innings while striking out eight. Juniel Querecuto and Armando Araiza each collected four hits, while four different Hot Rods drove in two runs.
RHP German Marquez: Marquez signed as an international free agent out of Venezuela in 2011, and at just 19 years old age, he is the youngest member of the Hot Rods starting rotation. Marquez allowed four runs (two earned) on nine hits over five frames in his last outing, and he hasn’t won since May 27. He defeated West Michigan that day by allowing just one run on four hits over six frames. This is only his second season stateside, and Marquez went 2-5 with a 4.05 ERA in 2013 with Princeton in the Appalachian League. Marquez was selected to participate in the Rays Winter Development Program at Tropicana Field this past January. Marquez has been superb in night games this season, as he enters tonight with a 2.43 ERA in 33.1 innings under the lights.
LHP Matt Dermody: Dermody was a college teammate of Hot Rods reliever Andrew Hanse at the University of Iowa, and he was selected in the 28th round in the 2013 draft by the Blue Jays. Dermody makes his tenth start of the season tonight, and is 3-3 with a 5.80 ERA in 45.0 innings. He shutout the Hot Rods over eight innings on May 13 in Bowling Green, his best start of his young career. Since then, Dermody has conceded seven runs in three of his six starts, including a May 23 start in Fort Wayne in which he allowed 11 runs (nine earned). Dermody went 7-2 with a 3.64 ERA in 14 starts his final year on campus.
RHP Luis Cabrera was re-added to the Bowling Green roster after a spell on the disabled list and two appearances with Advanced-A Port Charlotte. He tossed three shutout frames in his first game back on June 5 in Tampa, but allowed six runs in his next outing at Fort Myers. INF Darryl George will be active tonight for the first time in two weeks because of a minor wrist injury. Subsequent moves include the release of RHP Aaron Griffin and the promotion of INF/OF Ariel Soriano to PC.
Armando Araiza celebrates his 21st birthday today, and he’s also enjoying a surge at the plate. Araiza is coming off a four-hit effort in Fort Wayne, and has his safely in six of his last eight contests. So far, Araiza has posted his best average of any month in June (.289), and he owns nearly as many runs batted in (28) as games started (41).
Memorial Day Turnaround
Entering Memorial Day, Kean Wong had amassed just two hits against fellow left-handers, but he has amassed nine since to riase his batting average to .275 from below .100 before this stretch.
The Hot Rods were unable to make it three wins in a row, but came one groundball away from doing just that. The Hot Rods built a 2-0 lead on a two-run single by Oscar Hernandez in the fourth, but a two-run homer by Ben Verlander put West Michigan in front, 3-2. The Hot Rods would later rally and take the lead thanks to RBIs by Kean Wong and Ty Young. Leading 4-3 with two outs in the bottom of the sixth, Alexander Simon allowed a ball to roll under his legs and into the outfield. Instead of ending the frame, it tied the game at four-all. The contest would go until the 13th inning, when a throwing error on a bunt play allowed the Whitecaps to walk-off winners.
LHP Jordan Harrison: Chosen in the 25th round by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 2012 draft out of Louisiana Lafayette, Harrison pitched his first full season in 2013 between three levels. In Bowling Green, he compiled a 5-2 record and a 2.69 ERA in 15 games, nine of them starts. He made two cameo appearances for Advanced-A Port Charlotte, and also went 4-1 with a 2.73 ERA in five outings for short-season Hudson Valley. Harrison is coming off of a three-run, five-inning performance on April 17 vs. Clinton, but he allowed just three runs in his first two starts, which spanned 10.0 innings against South Bend and Burlington.
RHP Jonathon Crawford: The 20th overall selection out of the University of Florida in 2013, Crawford was rated as the fifth-best prospect in the Detroit Tigers system by Baseball America entering this season. He was dominant in 19.0 innings as a first time pro with short-season Connecticut last season, striking out 21 and conceding just four earned runs. As a junior at Florida, he went 3-6 with a 3.84 ERA in 15 starts, and signed just over a week after being drafted by the Tigers.
After yesterdays 13-inning loss, the Hot Rods fell to just 1-3 in extra innings, and have been outscored 11-3 in their four contests. The lone win in extras for Bowling Green came Monday night on a three-run, 10th inning home run by Armando Araiza, who returns to the lineup tonight.
Pat Blair is a new addition to the cleanup spot, but he has excelled in his early results. With another hit yesterday, Blair is batting .462 (6-13) in the cleanup role with an RBI and stolen base. For the season, the former Wake Forest four-year starter is batting .304 with four RBIs and an on-base percentage of .385.
Despite putting up solid numbers all season long, Granden Goetzman’s current hitting streak is his longest, and it reached five games yesterday with a base hit. Goetzman leads the Hot Rods in total extra-base hits (11), and doubles (7), and he’s tied for the lead in triples (2). His 19 hits ranks second just behind Kean Wong.
The franchise’s longest stretch without a win is now over, thanks to a dramatic 7-4 extra-inning win last night over West Michigan. The Hot Rods had to rally from 2-0 and 4-2 deficits, and Armando Araiza hit a three-run home run in the top of the 10th inning to give the Hot Rods the advantage. Bowling Green made it 4-3 in the eighth on an RBI-single by Kean Wong, and they tied it in the ninth on a run-scoring double by Granden Goetzman. In the 10th, Johnny Field and Wong reached, setting up the dramatic round-tripper by Araiza. Stone Speer was brilliant out of the bullpen, tossing the final innings and allowing just one base runner.
LHP Blake Snell: The Tampa Bay Rays made Snell the 52nd overall pick in the 2011 draft, and he impressed as an 18-year old first-time pro in ‘11 with the GCL Rays. He posted a 3.08 ERA in 26.1 innings that season, and followed it up with a 5-1 record and 2.09 ERA in Princeton in 2012. He was up-and-down last season, but the sky-high potential was seen often. With the Hot Rods in ‘13, Snell went 4-9 with a 4.27 ERA. However, he struck out an astounding 106 batters in just 99.0 innings of work. A blister kept Snell from starting on Opening Night, but he has been solid in his two starts. In 8.2 innings, he has recorded 12 strikeouts and conceded just three earned runs.
LHP Kevin Ziomek: A second-round pick by the Tigers in 2013, Ziomek starred at baseball powerhouse Vanderbilt for three seasons. His junior campaign he put up electric numbers, going 11-3 with a 2.12 ERA in 17 starts, going the distance in three of them. After throwing 119 innings for the Commodores, he was limited to just eight innings with Connecticut. This season, Ziomek has made two starts, struggling in his first but bouncing back in his second outing. He walked six batters in 2.2 innings on April 9, but allowed just one unearned run in five innings on April 15.
The longest run of defeats was snapped with last night’s victory, snapping a string of 13 consecutive defeats. The Midwest League record still stands at 15, with Minor League Baseball’s record coming in at 20 consecutive defeats.
Turning the Corner
Alexander Simon started the season hitless in his first six games, but he has now hit safely in five of the past seven contests. He doubled twice last night, and posted a two-hit evening on April 18 at home against Clinton. Simon has raised his batting average 87 points in four games.
With his game-tying double in the ninth last night, Granden Goetzman now has hit an extra-base knock in four straight games. On the season, the former second-rounder has had 11 of his 18 hits go for extra bases (7 doubles, 2 triples, 2 home runs). One of his round-trippers was an inside-the-park home run on April 17, which started his current streak.
Bowling Green Hot Rods (2-5) @ Peoria Chiefs (3-4)
Game 8 •Dozer Park•Peoria, Illinois
Friday, April 11, 2014• 6:30 PM CDT
LHP Chris Kirsch (0-1, 1.80) vs. RHP Silfredo Garcia (0-1, 2.25)
Radio: 1340 WBGN-AM “The Ticket”
Bowling Green: Home (2-2) / Road (0-3) •Peoria: Home (1-2) / Road (2-2)
Despite jumping out to a 3-0 lead, the Hot Rods could not end their losing streak, which now stands at five games after yesterday afternoon’s 5-4 loss to the Burlington Bees. Bowling Green scored three runs in the third, one on an RBI single by Armando Araiza, the other two on a throwing error by third baseman Angel Rosa. The Bees struck back for two runs in the fourth, but Darryl George scored on a wild pitch in the seventh to stretch the lead to 4-2. After Mark Shannon homered to make it 4-3 in the seventh, the Bees rallied for two runs in the eighth. Both came across after a ball up the middle was mishandled. Jordan Harrison turned in another fine starting performance, as he worked five innings and allowed just two runs on five hits.
LHP Chris Kirsch: The Chester, Pa. native was outstanding in his season debut, as Kirsch allowed just one run on one hit over five frames vs. South Bend last Saturday. He only issued one free pass in the start, and struck out six Silver Hawk batters. Kirsch was a 14th round selection by the Rays in 2012 out of Lackawanna (Pa.) College, and he excelled in the Hudson Valley rotation last season. Kirsch went 4-3 with a 2.94 ERA in 16 starts with the Renegades, ranking amongst the New York-Penn League leaders with 82.2 innings pitched and his sparkling ERA.
RHP Silfredo Garcia: Garcia returns for his second season with the Chiefs, and makes his second start of the season. Garcia allowed three total runs, but only one earned in a loss at Wisconsin on last Saturday. In 2013, Garcia made 18 starts for Peoria, recording a 4-5 record with a 3.82 ERA in 99.0 innings. His best professional season to date came back in 2012 between the GCL Cardinals and Johnson City (Appalachian League). That year, he won six games and posted a 2.44 ERA in 11 starts with 72 strikeouts to four free passes.
Familiar Name, Different Organization:
Hot Rods infielder Kean Wong is a familiar name in Cardinals country, as his older brother is an infielder for St. Louis. Wong, the youngest member of Bowling Green at 18 years old, is starting to make his mark professionally. He enters tonight on a five-game hitting streak. Wong has now hit safely in 44 of his 52 professional games. As a first time pro, Wong led the entire Rays system last year with a .328 batting average while with the GCL Rays after being taken in the fourth round.
Ending the Skid:
On their longest losing streak since the middle of last season, the Hot Rods enter tonight trying to end a five-game slide. The last time Bowling Green had lost more than three games in a row was between May 29 and June 5 of last season, when the club dropped seven contests in a row. That offers a lot of hope, as Bowling Green went on to set a franchise record with 82 wins last season.
Suited for Lead-Off:
Johnny Field seems to be a perfect match for the lead-off spot so far this season. In his six starts, Field has reached base in each game, recording at least one base hit in five of those contests. He boasts a .423 on-base percentage entering tonight, and his plus-speed wreaks havoc on the base paths. While he does not posses a stolen base this season, he has scored two of his five runs from first base, and the former Arizona Wildcat swiped 14 bases in 60 games with Hudson Valley.
Bowling Green Hot Rods (2-3) @ Burlington Bees (3-2)
Game 6 •Community Field•Burlington, Iowa
Wednesday, April 9, 2014• 6:30 PM CDT
RHP Jake Faria (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Ryan Etsell (NR)
Radio: 1340 WBGN-AM “The Ticket”
About Last Night:
Both teams received excellent pitching, as Bowling Green’s Blake Snell and Burlington’s Elliot Morris dominated opposing batters. Snell worked four and two-thirds with seven strikeouts, but two runs that were charged to Snell after he left spoiled his night. Morris struck out six batters and allowed just one hit through his five innings as he picked up the win. The Bees got all the offense they would need on a two-run triple by Anthony Bemboom, but they would also add a sacrifice fly to give the game it’s final margin of 3-0.
RHP Jake Faria: At just 20 years of age, Faria became the youngest Hot Rod to get the nod on Opening Night since Enny Romero did in 2011. Faria won’t turn 21 until July 30, but he was very impressive on Opening Night. Faria worked into the fifth inning, and did not allow a run. He finished his night with five punch outs and Faria did not walk a batter. He dominated the Appalachian League last season, posting a 2.02 ERA in 12 starts. Faria was a 10th round draft choice in 2011 out of Gahr High School in Cerritos, California.
RHP Ryan Etsell: Etsell makes his first start of 2014, and is still very new to the professional ranks. He tossed 32.0 innings last year with the AZL Angels and Orem, logging a 0-2 record and conceding 11 earned runs. He was a 16th round pick out of Hillsborough Community College, where he went 6-3 with a 1.69 ERA his final season, logging 101.0 innings and striking out 97 batters to just nine walks.
Grand Start for Goetzman:
While his extra-base streak ended last night, Granden Goetzman still found ways to be a pest. He reached base on three occasions (hit-by-pitch, single, walk), as his early-season average continues to hover near the .500 mark. Goetzman has hit safely in all but one of Bowling Green’s games so far this season.
Four games in, Hot Rods outfielder Johnny Field had hit safely in all four games, but was held hitless by Bees pitching last night. He did reach base by drawing a walk, but it was the first time this young season a Hot Rod lead-off man had not collected at least one hit in a contest.
The Hot Rods tied a season-high by turning two double plays last night, one on the ground and the other through the air. James Harris came in from right field to run down a blooper and double up Bemboom at first base. On the ground, Pat Blair and Alexander Simon teamed up for a more conventional 6-3 double play.
After missing 2013 due to injury Juniel Querecuto is enjoyed a respectable start to his season. As expected, Querecuto has made spectacular plays at short without a misstep, and at the plate he’s showing signs of life as well. Querecuto drove in two runs on Sunday, and had three hits vs. SB.