BMLN: Jackson Shines in Double-A Start
Zach Jackson

Posted Jul 20, 2005


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Sky Chiefs Roughed up by Indians

In Corey Koskie’s 2nd rehab start at Triple-A Syracuse, the Sky Chiefs were shellacked at the tune of 13-0 by The Pittsburgh Pirates Triple-A team the Indianapolis Indians. The Sky Chiefs mustered only 4 hits in the game with Joe DePastino contributed two of the four hits, including a double. DePastino, who has been playing on a more frequent basis since July, is hitting .314 (38-121) in thirty seven games, and over his last eleven games he is hitting .421 (16-38) with two home runs and seven RBI. Corey Koskie went 1-for-3 on the night with a single and he also reached on an error. He was lifted for the 2nd straight night after 3 at-bats, this time in favor of Jason Alfaro. Kevin Barker had the forth Sky Chiefs hit.

The story on the night, however, was the Chiefs pitching; Josue Matos (5-2) got the start and suffered the loss going just four innings and surrendering nine earned runs on nine hits, including two home runs. Matos’ ERA ballooned to 6.06 on the night from 4.88 before the game. He walked two batters and struck out four in the outing. It was his second straight sub-par outing after looking like the right-hander had found his groove at Triple-A. Matos began the season allowing eight earned runs in his first twelve innings with Syracuse but then settled down as he issued ten earned runs over his next thirty-one innings of work. However, over his last three outings he has issued seventeen earned runs in just eight innings of work. Adrian Burnside came in relief in the fifth inning, but, didn’t’ fare much better, going two innings and surrendering three earned runs on four hits along with walking two batters while also striking out two. Infielder Jason Alfaro actually switched from third-baseman in the 7th to pitch two innings of relief as the bullpen was tired from being overworked the past few days. He didn’t pitch badly as he went two innings, allowing two hits and just one earned run while walking none and striking out two.

On another note, the Jays announced that starting pitcher Dave Bush would be recalled from Triple-A Syracuse on Friday to make a start on Saturday against Kansas City. No announcement has been made as to who would be sent down. Also, right-handed pitcher Justin Miller returns to the Sky Chiefs after being designated for assignment by the Jays on Thursday. He cleared waivers and has been out-righted Syracuse. He made just one appearance for Toronto, going 2.1 innings while surrendering four earned runs on five hits, including three home runs. His ERA was a disturbing 15.43.

Jackson outstanding in New Hampshire

Lefty starter Zach Jackson (4-3) was outstanding for the Fisher Cats in his ninth start since being called up from Single-A Dunedin. He went eight solid innings while allowing just one run on five hits. He only walked one batter and struck out five. In total he has an ERA of 4.00 ERA in fifty-four innings with forty-three strike outs so far at Double-A this season. Jackson was the 2nd round pick by the Blue Jays in last year’s draft. The Fisher Cats would take the game 3-2 over the Akron Aeros (Cleveland Indians AA) as Steve Andrade picked up his third save this season while allowing one run on one hit and striking out two in the ninth inning.

On the offensive side, Miguel Negron was the offensive star going 2-for-4 with a home run, his sixth of the season. Negron is hitting .313 (20-64) over his last sixteen games with two home runs and ten RBI, while over his last thirty-nine games, he is hitting .321 (51-159) with six home runs and twenty RBI.

Chip Cannon also went 2-for-4 on the night with a pair of doubles and a run scored. Cannon is hitting .257 in thirty-five at bats in ten games since his promotion to Double-A. Erik Kratz and Clint Johnston also picked up RBI in the game; Kratz on a ground out and Johnston on a single.

It was also reported today that starter Casey Janssen would only miss one start after being hit on the arm by a comeback to the mound in the first game of the Saturday doubleheader. The diagnosis is that he has a bruise but they want to rest him for precautionary measures since it’s on his pitching arm.

Dunedin Blue Jays with an off-day

The entire Florida State League had an off-day Tuesday evening.

Lansing Falls 2-1 to Fort Wayne

The Lansing Lugnuts fell in a close pitcher’s duel Tuesday versus the Fort Wayne Wizards, who are the Padres’ Midwest League team. The final score was just 2-1 and all three runs were scored in the first inning. Lansing actually out-hit Fort Wayne 6-5 in the loss; and had a frew chances with two runners on and two outs later on in the game but couldn’t cash them in. Chi-Hung Cheng went a solid six innings in the loss and surrendering both Fort Wayne runs on four hits along with two walks and five strikeouts. Cheng is 4-5 on the season with a 3.01 ERA and has struck out 110 batters while issuing forty-three walks in ninety-eight innings of work. Opposing batters are hitting .223 off the left-hander. Aaron Tressler was outstanding in relief, going three innings and allowing just one hit while walking none and striking out none. In nine innings since joining Lansing on June 8, the right-hander has allowed just one earned run and is holding opposing hitters to a .167 batting average against mark.

As far as offense, Eric Nielsen had two hits, including a double and the lone RBI on the game for Lansing. Nielsen is hitting .263 on the season, but over his last sixteen games, he is hitting .348 (23-66) with seven RBI and nine runs scored.

DoubleDays take slugfest over New Jersey

The Auburn Doubledays won an all-out slugfest over the New Jersey Cardinals. Randy Dicken made the start for Auburn and went just four innings. He surrendered two runs on seven hits and walked none while striking out nine. Sean Stidfole relieved him the fifth and picked up the win (1-0) going three innings, allowing just two hits but three runs, two of the unearned variety. Stidfole picked up his first professional victory on Tuesday and on the season has allowed just three earned runs in twelve innings, while recording thirteen strikeouts. Josh Sowers was roughed up as he came in for the eighth inning. He would go just two-thirds of an inning and allow four earned runs on five hits. It was his fourth straight appearance that he struggled and over his last two outing he has allowed a combined six runs, while pitching just 1 1/3 innings. On the season he has a 8.79 ERA and opposing batters are hitting a solid .359 off him. Paul Phillips backed him up and shut the door in the final inning and a-third, allowing no hits or walks and striking out two batters.

Offensively, there were many stars but Cory Patton stood out the most. Patton went 2-for-5 with three runs scored, two home runs (seven on the year) and five RBI on the night. Anthony Garibaldi went 2-for-4 with three runs scored, a home run (third of year) and three RBI. Nick Thomas also belted a home run (second of year) and added two RBI. Ryan Patterson and Sean Shoffit would also add a pair of RBI a piece on the night. In all, the final score was 16-9.

Pulaski fall 7-5 in the only Appalachian League game

In an odd night where all the other games in Appalachian League were postponed due to rain, the Pulaski Blue Jays actually got a game in and lost to the Danville Braves 7-5. Jesse Litsch started the game for Pulaski and picked up the loss (2-1). He didn’t do that poorly as he went six innings, allowing six hits and four runs (two unearned) while walking two batters and striking out four. Litsch is now 2-1 on the season with a 3.00 ERA. In thirty-six innings he has allowed twenty-nine hits, issued six walks, and struck out thirty-eight batters, while holding opponents to a .221 batting average. However, the bullpen didn’t keep it close as they allowed three runs in the next two innings. Pulaski made a late push in the ninth with the score 7-3 to score two runs and make it 7-5 but that was as close as it would get.

Offensively, Pulaski had nine hits. Wesley Stone was the offensive star going 3-for-5 at the plate with a double and three RBI. Stone is hitting .329 (24-73) on the season with one home runs and nine RBI. Chris Guttierrez went 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles as the DH tonight. Jesus Gonzalez would go 1-for-4 with a home run (2) and a pair of RBI. Jorge Sanders went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI in the game.


Related Stories
Q&A with Top Prospect Casey Janssen
 -by FutureJays.com  Jul 20, 2005
Doubledays Drop Game Two to New Jersey
 -by FutureJays.com  Jul 21, 2005
Minor League Notes: Gronkiewicz Promoted to AAA
 -by FutureJays.com  Jul 14, 2005

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