(52-35) Charlotte Stone Crabs 2, (30-58) Florida Fire Frogs 1
- Andrew Moritz, RF: 2-for-4, .746 OPS
- Drew Lugbauer, 1B: 1-for-3, HR (11), RBI, R, .590 OPS
- CJ Alexander, 3B: 0-for-4, .467 OPS
- Nolan Kingham, SP: 7.0 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K
The Fire Frogs spoiled a solid start from Nolan Kingham as they fell to the Stone Crabs 2-1. Good Nolan Kingham showed up last night as he navigated through seven innings of work giving up just two earned runs while striking out five and walking just one. All of the damage done against Kingham came via singles as he did not allow a single extra-base hit through his seven innings, and the duo of Sean McLaughlin and Brandon S. White worked a perfect final two innings to keep the Fire Frogs in the game, but ultimately the offense was shut down. Sean and Brandon are both doing work while in Florida – both sporting an ERA of 2.16, and 0.95 respectively.
The offense being shut down seems to be a bit of a theme for the Fire Frogs as they trotted out NINE players with an OPS under .680, with six being an incredible sub .600 OPS. To put this lightly this offensive is hilariously bad. The lone bright spot came in the bottom of the seventh inning when Drew Lugbauer hit his eleventh homer of the season – and while Lugbauer is starting to hit better, as he has a four game hitting streak, this bat first and now first base prospect has a .590 OPS on the season. There must be something going on in Florida because there is talent on this team but for whatever reason all are under performing. Because I do not want to end a game recap with just doom and gloom, Andrew Moritz continued his fine hitting – going 2-for-4 with a single and raising his OPS to a lineup leading, by a significant margin, .746 and also picked up his third stolen base of the season, but also his third caught stealing of the season.
(41-48) Rome Braves 4, (46-44) Charleston RiverDogs 3
- Jose Bermudez, LF: 2-for-3, 3B, 3 RBI, 1 R, .527 OPS
- Braden Shewmake, SS: 0-for-4, .999 OPS
- Justin Dean, CF: 0-for-3, RBI, .843 OPS
- Gabriel Noguera, SP: 6.0 IP, 5 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 5 K, 3.39 ERA
Rome rode on the coattails of a solid start from Gabriel Noguera – picking up their 41st win of the season in a pretty exciting game – propelling them to a tie for first in the second half standings. Gabriel Noguera, not really a prospect, has had a very solid season for Rome sporting a 3.39 ERA, and .258 batting average against. He kept the Rome Braves in the game and that’s really all you can ask for. Following Gabriel was Luis Mora who worked 1.1 hitless innings but did walk two as he picked up the hold. Jake Higginbotham worked a perfect 1.2 innings to pick up the save for Rome.
Offensively, the top four of Justin Dean, Drew Campbell, Braden Shewmake, and Shea Langeliers went a combined 0-for-12 with two strikeouts. All of the damage came in the fifth inning when Jose Bermudez tripled to right field – scoring Greg Cullen, Braulio Vasquez, and Ricardo Rodriguez to give Rome the lead at 3-2. Justin Dean then hit a sacrifice fly that scored Bermudez to extend the lead to 4-2. Charleston was able to tack on another run but ultimately fell to Rome 4-3.
(8-13) Greenville Drive 9, (10-11) Danville Braves 3
- Beau Philip, SS: 0-for-4, BB, RBI, .553 OPS
- Willie Carter, LF: 2-for-5, RBI, .861 OPS
- Bryce Ball, LF: 2-for-5, 2B, R, 1.281 OPS
- Filyer Sanchez, SP: 5.0 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 0BB 5 K, 3.04 ERA
Don’t normally recap short season ball but it is important to note the absolute dominance by Bryce Ball – who had yet another multi-hit game and now has a 1.281 OPS on the season for Danville. Won’t be long until he joins Shewmake and Langeliers over in Rome which could make for a really good postseason roster for the A-ball team. Joining him may be talented 34th round pick, Willie Carter, who definitely has a nice bat and is likely too advanced for Danville as well. International signing Jose Palma, who has not had a good first two years in professional baseball for the DSL affiliates, has made his state side debut for Danville and is hitting the cover off the ball – sporting a .927 OPS through 15 games. Palma went 2-for-2 with two walks, a run scored, and his fifth double of the season.