MiLB Recap Blog: Vasquez, Kown Outstanding

Vaquez has been excellent in two straight starts.

Each morning, check in for the Minor League Recap Blog. Get all of the results from the games, the latest standings and the daily blog recapping the previous day's action.

June 7th Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – COLUMBUS 2, TOLEDO 1
38-26, t-1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – ERIE 3, NEW HAMPSHIRE 1
26-36, 5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – LAKELAND 3, DAYTONA 4
31-31, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – GAME 1: WEST MICHIGAN 6, GREAT LAKES 7 - GAME 2: WEST MICHIGAN 7, GREAT LAKES 0 (Suspended)
30-29, 3rd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers - DSL PADRES 16, DSL TIGERS 4
2-3, 3rd in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – VSL TIGERS 4, VSL METS 8
4-18, 8th in VSL

The real Virgil Vasquez stood up for the second start in a row, but the powerful Toledo offense was absent from Saturday's game. VV yielded only one run in seven spectacular innings, but Clay Rapada couldn't keep the game tied in his first rehab appearance. With two walks in two-thirds of an innings, Rapada took the loss. Hits were scarce for the Hens with Freddy Guzman picking up two of the teams five base knocks.

In another low scoring affair, Erie picked up a 3-1 win against New Hampshire. The offensive star was Jeff Frazier with a 4-for-4 performance including a double and a home run. Casper Wells also knocked one out of the park for his first Double-A home run. Andrew Kown spun over seven shutout innings to pick up his fourth win of the season for the 'Wolves.

It took 13 innings to decide Lakeland's FSL matchup with Daytona, but the end result was a 4-3 Cubs win. Shawn Roof's two doubles led the way at the plate for the LFT, and Jeramy Laster collected a two-run triple in four trips to the plate. The Tigers used six pitchers, with Rick Porcello starting the game and allowing two runs on six hits in 4 2/3 innings while striking out five. After Zach Simons yielded a run in the seventh, the trio of Nick Martin, Derek Witt, and Jay Sborz combined to shutout Daytona until the 13th when Mark Brackman gave up the winning run on two hits and two walks.

In the first game of a double-header against the Great Lakes Loons, West Michigan' furious final inning comeback fell just a run short. Down 7-1 entering the final frame, the 'Caps tacked on five runs before they were finally retired. Manny Miguelez was roughed in the complete game effort, giving up all seven Loons' runs. Kody Kaiser and Justin Henry both picked up two hits with a home run and a triple, respectively. Audy Ciriaco also had a solid game with two singles and two RBI.

In the second game of the night for the 'Caps, Paul Nardozzi was dominating as the starter, throwing up zeros and striking out six in 4 1/3 innings. Jordan Newton ripped another triple, his seventh, in three at-bats, and Audy Ciriaco blasted his third home run of the year. Hayden Parrott also picked up his first two hits for the 'Caps, along with a walk and an RBI. The game was supsended in the bottom of the fifth, and will be resumed presumably Sunday afternoon, with the 'Caps leading 7-0.

San Diego's DSL affiliate crushed the Tigers on Saturday, to the tune of a 16-4 romp. Only one Tiger collected more than one hit, as Ernesto Martes was 2-for-4 with a double. Samir Rijo took advantage of his lone hit, driving a solo shot. Of seven hurlers used by the Tigers, only two managed to keep runs off the board. Kelvin Medina and Melvin Mercedes both threw 1-plus innings of scoreless relief.

The VSL Tigers just can't seem to string any wins together. A day after picking up just their fourth win of the year, they were back on the wrong side of the ledger; losing an 8-4 battle to the Mets. Four players collected two hits, including Francisco Martinez who kept his lengthy on-base streak alive with two singles and a walk. None of the Tigers' pitchers were terribly successful on Saturday, each giving up at least two runs. Fernando Celis took his first loss of the year by giving up two runs in 3 2/3 innings of work.

Posted by: Mark, 6/7


June 6th Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – TOLEDO 2, LOUSIVILLE 8
38-25, 1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – ERIE 9, NEW HAMPSHIRE 4
25-36, 5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – LAKELAND 4, DAYTONA 12
31-30, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – POSTPONED DUE TO RAIN
30-28, 3rd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers - DSL NATIONALS 3, DSL TIGERS 5
2-2, t-2nd in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – VSL TIGERS 11, VSL RAYS 8
4-17, 8th in VSL

With two days of crazy draft content, the focus was elsewhere throughout the organization. As such, many may have missed the numerous moves made by the Tigers on Thursday, and if that is you, check out Thursday's Minor League Notebook for all the details.

A night after winning a thrilling extra inning affair against Louisville, Toledo dropped an 8-2 contest. Freddy Guzman remained hot after a 4-for-6 performance, by going 2-for-4 with a double and a triple on Thursday. Eddie Bonine gave up five runs in six innings while striking out five, to drop his record to 9-2 on the year. Fernando Rodney was torched for three runs in just 1/3 of an inning in his rehab appearance tonight.

Erie's bats picked up the slack for Toledo; pounding out nine runs behind home runs from Dustry Ryan (at first base), Kody Kirland, and Justin Justice. The 'Wolves saw three RBI each from Justice and second baseman Will Rhymes. Josh Rainwater continues to impress in the rotation, working five innings while allowing only three runs with six punch outs. Outside of one unearned run, the Erie bullpen was dominant on Thursday, chalking up three strikeouts in four innings of work.

For the second straight night, Lakeland was pounded on the road; giving up twelve runs to Daytona on Thursday. Michael Bertram led the way offensively with a 2-for-4 performance with a home run and three runs drive in. On the mound, Rmaon Garcia was lit up for eight earned runs (twelve total) in just 4 1/3 innings of work. Guillermo Moscoso tossed 2 1/3 shoutout innings with five strikeouts, and there are rumors swirling that he could move to the rotation this week.

The DSL Tigers made it two straight with a 5-3 win against the Nats second team. Ramon Lebron tossed three hitless innings as the starter, striking out four. Marcos Nunez picked up his first win of the year by tossing three shutout innings, and Sandy De La Cruz picked up where he left off last year with two scoreless for his first save. Alexander Nunez and Elvin Soto led the way at the plate with two hits apiece.

And much to the amazement of this minor league guru, the VSL Tigers picked up yet another win. Six of the team's nine starters picked up multiple hits, led by Avisail Garcia's three hits including a two-run home run. Josue Carreno and Michael Torrealba were roughed up through the first 5 2/3 innings, but Clemente Mendoza and Jose Ortega completely locked down the remaining innings with six strikeouts.

Posted by: Mark, 6/6


June 5th Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – TOLEDO 13, LOUSIVILLE 12
38-24, 1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – ERIE 1, PORTLAND 3
24-36, 5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – LAKELAND 3, DAYTONA 13
31-29, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – WEST MICHIGAN 3, GREAT LAKES 9
30-28, 3rd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers - DSL TIGERS 5, DSL NATIONALS 2
1-2, 4th in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – VSL TIGERS 2, VSL MARINERS 3
3-17, 8th in VSL

On a day where the MLB draft took center stage, two 2007 draftees struggled for the West Michigan Whitecaps. Getting his first professional start, left-hander Matt Hoffman gave up five hits and three runs in three innings of work while walking three and striking out the same. Hoffman was relieved by last year's supplemental round choice, Brandon Hamilton, who didn't fair much better. Hamilton's night resulted in three earned runs (six total) allowed in three innings. The 'Caps defense had four errors behind the pitching staff, led by Ronnie Bourquin's tenth misque of the year. At the dish, only Roger Tomas and Casper Wells collected multiple hits; each notching two singles in four plate appearances.

Lakeland had an even worse day, losing to Dayton by the score of 13-3. Ryan Strieby continued his hot-hitting ways, going 3-for-4 with his 8th home run of the year. Jordan Tata -- who was rumored to be on his way to Toledo if this start went well -- had a miserable evening. In just 2/3 of an inning, Tata walked three, gave up three hits, and yielded a total of seven earned runs. Mark Brackman didn't fare much better in relief, giving up six runs of his own in just 2 1/3 innings.

Continuing to move up the ladder, we still can't find a minor league win tonight. Erie was shut down by Portland starter Matthew Goodson. The lone 'Wolves run came on an RBI single by Kody Kirkland, chasing Will Rhymes across the plate. On the hill, Luke French wasn't dominant, but with only three runs allowed in five innings, he kept Erie in the ball game. Angel Castro, Casey Fien, and Danny Zell combined to finish off the final three innings with scoreless work.

Outside the confines of the United States, minor league fans are still left searching for a win as the VSL Tigers took their 17th loss of the season. Several players picked up muliple hits, led by Francisco Martinez's 3-for-4 day with an RBI, and two hits each from Ivan Espinoza, Hernan Perez, and Dick Guanipa. Jose Diaz went the distance for the Tigers, pitching eight innings of five-hit ball while yielding only one earned run. Two Adolfo Reina errors at third base led to two unearned runs, while Diaz didn't walk a batter and struck out two.

The DSL Tigers finally got the system off their Thursday skid, by getting their first win of the young season. Rookie Rayni Guichardo flipped three perfect innings in the start with five strikeouts, before giving way to fellow rookie Carlos Melo who logged three more shutout innings with five strikeouts of his own while allowing three hits. Robinson Figueroa picked up a triple in four at-bats, as Luis Castillo and Julio Rodriguez picked up an RBI each, while the other three runs scored as the result of errors by the Nats.

Rounding things out, the Toledo Mud Hens had an extended affair against Louisville, lasting eleven innings before pulling out the win. While Hens needed all three eleventh inning runs to ensure the win, the offense was led by homers from Mike Hessman (22) and Matt Joyce (8), and 4-for-6 nights from Freddy Guzman and Dan Sardihna. Chris Lambert's string of successful starts came to an end as he gave up seven total runs in just 3 2/3 innings, and Ian Ostlund was also roughed up. The pitching was pretty dicey all night, but the offense bailed them out for the victory.

Posted by: Mark, 6/5


June 4th Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – TOLEDO 5, LOUSIVILLE 8
37-24, 1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – ERIE 5, PORTLAND 0
24-35, 5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – SARASOTA 1, LAKELAND 6
31-28, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – WEST MICHIGAN 3, DAYTON 4
30-27, 2nd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers – POSTPONED DUE TO RAIN
0-2, 4th in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – VSL PHILLIES 8, VSL TIGERS 7
3-16, 8th in VSL

In a game shortened to six innings by rain, Danny Christensen probably could have dominated for another six the way he was going. Yielding only two hits and two walks, Danny earned the shortened complete game shutout to move to 3-4 on the season. Danny Worth's three singles and three runs scored, along with two doubles from Wilkin Ramirez, was more than engough offense for the 'Wolves on Wednesday. Jeff Frazier also picked up two hits in the game, and Max Leon continued his strong performance from the leadoff spot with two walks and two runs scored.

Continued mashing from the likes of Brent Clevlen and Mike Hessman doesn't seem to be enough for Toledo right now. Hessman ripped his league leading 21st home run of the season off of former Tiger Adam Pettyjohn. Brent Clevlen also continued his tear by going yard again, also off Pettyjohn. Despite the offense from the two big sluggers, Yorman Bazardo just couldn't keep the Louisville offense in check. Bazardo gave up gix runs in six innings. Right-hander Matt Rusch came on for the seventh and eighth, giving up three hits, three walks, and two runs in his two innings.

A stellar pitching performance by Matt O'Brien led Lakeland to a 6-1 over Sarasota. O'Brien's fifth win of the year was the result of seven innings without giving up an earned run and striking out seven. Zach Simons continued to settle into his bullpen role with the Tigers, pitching two scoreless frames to close out the win. Eight of the nine Lakeland starters picked up a hit int he game, led by Pedro Cotto's two-run shot in the fourth. Four players drove in the other four runs in the game, led by Laster's RBI double; his tenth of the season.

Despite a furious comeback over the last four innings, the VSL Tigers couldn't put together their season's first win streak. Trailing 7-1 heading to the bottom of the sixth, the Tigers scored two in the sixth, three in the eighth, and one more in the ninth, before Wondy De Los Santos grounded out to leave the tying run on second base. Adolfo Reina was the hitting start with a double and his second home run of the season. Francisco Martinez managed to extend his on-base streak to 14 games by drawing a sixth inning walk to keep the two-run rally alive. Bruce Rondon took the loss, falling to 0-2 in his young career, while fellow rookie Carlos Alvarez gave up just an unearned run in three innings of work.

Trailing nearly the entire game, the Whitecaps were vaulted back into the game on the back of a three-run bomb by designated hitter Jordan Newton. Unfortunately, Jon Kibler gave one run back in the bottom of the seventh to tie the game, before Dayton pulled out the victory in the bottom of the ninth. Kibler threw 6 1/3 giving up three runs (two earned) and striking out four, and Wilton Garcia yielded the game winning run after 2 1/3 innings of excellent relief work.

Posted by: Mark, 6/4


June 3rd Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – TOLEDO 7, LOUSIVILLE 2
37-23, 1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – ERIE 1, PORTLAND 8
23-35, t-5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – SARASOTA 10, LAKELAND 8
30-28, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – WEST MICHIGAN 5, DAYTON 2
30-26, 2nd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers – DSL TIGERS,6, DSL NATIONALS 8
0-2, 4th in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – VSL TIGERS 7, VSL ASTROS 2
3-15, 8th in VSL

The Flying Tigers couldn't pick up the win in Joel Zumaya's 2008 debut, but he did his part, tossing two scoreless innings allowing one hit and one walk, fanning one hitter. The defense wasn't quite as bad as Monday, but they still committed four errors, leading to three unearned runs behind starter Jonah Nickerson. Despite all that, the LFT were in the game until Guillermo Moscoso was really roughed up to the tune of four runs on four hits and two walks in a late inning and a third of work. At the plate, James Skelton managed two doubles from the leadoff spot, among his three hits on the night. Also torching Sarasota pitching was the awakening Brennan Boeach, who finished the night 4-for-6 with a triple and an RBI.

On the other side of the coin, Fernando Rodney managed to pick up the win in his return to the mound. In speaking with reliever Matt Rusch after the game, he though Rodney looked pretty good, saying 'He got the outs when he needed them most.' Rodney came on for two scoreless innings in the sixth and seventh, following an inning of relief by Anastacio Martinez and four strong innings from emergency starter Lauren Gagnier. Gagnier was called up from West Michigan to fill in for the scheduled starter, Casey Fossum who was summoned to Detroit. Brent Clevlen remained on an absurd tear, ripping two more home runs, giving him twelve on the season, while driving in five in the victory.

In a game shortened by rain, the West Michigan Whitecaps pulled out a 5-2 win over Dayton in six innings. Starter Andrew Hess pitched well through four, giving way to to left-hander Mauricio Robles who picked up his second win since joining the club. Robles gave up only one hit in 1 2/3 innings while striking out four. After being moved up in the order by Manager Joe DePastino, Audy Ciriaco has responded, going 2-for-3 with two doubles and three RBI on Tuesday night.

Erie had a rough go of it against one of Boston's top pitching prospects, right-hander Michael Bowden. The offense only managed three hits and one run, with Max Leon picking up the only extra-base knock with a double. Jon Connolly was peppered in four innings on the hill, and Brendan Wise and Marcelo Perez each gave up a run in two innings of relief.

The VSL Tigers finally got back into the win column with a 7-2 win against the Astros. Hernan Perez, Adolfo Reina, and Alex Moreno each collected multiple hits that included a double and at least one run driven in. While splitting his time this season between first and third bases, Francisco Martinez got on base for the 13th game in a row, and has only failed to reach base in a game he started, once this season. Eduardo Gonzalez turned in his first good outing of the year, yielding only two runs in five innings. His effort was backed by four filthy innings from Wilsen Palacios, who struck out four and allowed only three hits.

In their second game of the year, against the Nationals' other DSL squad, the DSL Tigers were on the short end of an 8-6 ball game. Alexander Nunez and Julio Rodriguez each collected two hits, while Ricardo Olivo was 3-for-4 with a double and a walk. Emmanuel Del Orbe made his professional debut, taking the loss after giving up one hit, three walks, and three runs in just 1 1/3 innings of work. Veterans Crucito Moreno and Sandy De La Cruz managed to combine for 4 1/3 innings with just one run crossing the plate with four strikeouts.

Posted by: Mark, 6/3


June 2nd Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – TOLEDO 17, INDIANAPOLIS 3
36-23, 1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – OFF DAY
23-34, 5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – SARASOTA 8, LAKELAND 2
30-27, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – WEST MICHIGAN 10, DAYTON 6
29-26, t-2nd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers – DSL NATIONALS 5, DSL TIGERS 1
0-1, 3rd in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – VSL CARDINALS 7, VSL TIGERS 6
2-15, 8th in VSL

The Toledo offense was back on full display Monday night, led by the exploits of Brent Clevlen. Clevlen continued his strong play from May, going 3-for-6 on the night with a double and home run, while driving in five 'Hens runs. Timo Perez continues to get back on track, reaching base in all six plate appearances with four hits and two walks, scoring three runs and driving in four. The speedy Freddy Guzman also collected four base hits, including fourth triple since being promoted to Erie. On the mound, the real Virgil Vasquez showed up by turning in a quality start, followed by scoreless frames from the rehabbing Denny Bautista and right-hander Matt Rusch.

Duane Below had been on a roll of late, but that roll ended against Sarasota, as he gave up six runs (four earned) in just three innings. Below certainly wasn't helped by a porous LFT defense that committed six errors in the game. At the plate, Cale Iorg finished the night 3-for-4 with a triple and his eighth home run of the year.

For the second night in a row, the Whitecaps put a ten-spot on the Dayton Dragons, led by three hits each from Audy Ciriaco, Kody Kaiser, Roger Tomas, and Justin Henry. Casper Wells and Chris Carlson each homered on the night. Desite wild outings from starter Manny Miguelez and first long-man Paul Nardozzi, the 'Caps bullpen was lights out over the final 3 2/3 innings. Wilton Garcia, Rudy Darrow, and Noah Krol combined to allow only two hits while striking out two over that span.

After being rained out over the weekend, the DSL Tigers got their season underway with a loss to the Nats. Santo Heredia led the way at the plate with a 2-for-4 day, and rookie Ricardo Olivo was 1-for-3 with a double and the team's lone run driven in. Starter Robert Diaz gave up just one unearned run in 2 2/3 innings of work, walking one and striking out five. Also pitching well was Ramon Lebron, who worked two perfect innings with four strikeouts.

Despite a five run seventh that gave the Tigers the lead, they managed to lose in extra innings to the Cardinals. Avisail Garcia drove in two runs with a double, and shortstop Hernan Perez and Alexander Moreno each managed two hits for the game. One of Moreno's hits was his third home run of the young season. Clemente Mendoza took the loss on an unearned run in the eleventh, thanks to an error by second baseman Wondy De Los Santos. Fernando Celis turned in a solid start going 4 2/3 innings with only two runs allowed on six hits, with three walks and three strikeouts.

Posted by: Mark, 6/2


June 1st Games

AAA Toledo Mud Hens – TOLEDO 5, INDIANAPOLIS 3
35-23, 1st in West division

AA Erie SeaWolves – ALTOONA 6, ERIE 5
23-34, 5th in West division

A+ Lakeland Flying Tigers – LAKELAND 0, DUNEDIN 4
30-26, 4th in West division

A West Michigan Whitecaps – WEST MICHIGAN 10, DAYTON 0
28-26, 2nd in Eastern division

R DSL Tigers – OFF DAY
0-0, t-2nd in Santo Domingo West

R VSL Tigers – OFF DAY
2-14, 8th in VSL

Toledo right-hander Eddie Bonine got things back on track after two rough starts in a row. Bonine's seven strong innings, and scoreless innings from both Preston Larrison and Blaine Neal, moved him to 9-1 on the season. Matt Joyce has picked up where he left off upon his promotion to Detroit, managing a 2-for-3 night with a triple and a home run. Joyce's eighth inning blast provided a little bit of cushion for the relief crew.

Max Leon continues to pick up hits at the top of the Erie lineup, notching two singles in six trips Sunday afternoon. Deik Scram also collected two hits, both triples, raising his average to .258 this year. Andrew Kown was roughed up a bit in seven innings of work, yielding five earned runs (six total) on ten hits.

A tough first inning killed Rick Porcello's night, as he gave up three runs to Dunedin in the bottom of the first frame. Rick gave up another run in the fifth, before giving way to Derek Witt and Nick Martin who locked things down the rest of the way. The LFT offense never got things rolling against the Dunedin's undefeated starter, Kyle Ginley. Louis Ott and Jeramy Laster led the way with two hits apiece, and Brennan Boesch continued his recent hard hitting with his ninth double of the year.

A big shakeup from Joe DePastino and a dominating outing from Alfredo Figaro led to a 10-0 shutout of Dayton on Sunday, as the Whitecaps moved back to two games over .500. Figaro's seventh win of the year came as a complete game shutout where he allowed only three hits and no walks. At the plate, Chris Carlson hit his sixth home run of the season and Justin Henry poked his first of the year. Kody Kaiser drove in three on two hits.

Posted by: Mark, 6/1


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