Here it is, your weekly update on how the Royals minor league affiliates are doing. It was a decent week for the affiliates as Burlington and Northwest Arkansas continue to be top teams in their leagues and Kane County and Omaha have been righting the ship, Omaha especially as their bats are starting to wake up and they are now 8-7. They have lost a couple of key relievers this week with the promotions of Blake Wood and Louis Coleman but make no mistake, this team still has a lot of pitching talent and will be fine. Here is where the affiliates stand as of today:
Kane County Cougars – 6-9 (7th place)
Wilmington Blue Rocks – 9-4 (1st place)
Northwest Arkansas Naturals – 7-5 (1st place)
Omaha Storm Chasers – 8-7 (2nd place)
Low A (Kane County):
4/17/2011 – Kane County Cougars defeat Clinton LumberKings, 6-1
Murray Watts – 3/5, 2 RBI
Murray Watts led the way with 2 RBI’s as the Cougars were able to finish out their series with the LumberKings on a winning note.
4/18/2011 – Kane County Cougars defeat Burlington Bees, 4-3
Ray Marimon – 4 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 2 BB, 4 SO
Ryan Stovall – 1 RBI
Ryan Stovall knocked in the winning run late in the game which then allowed Chase Boruff to come in and pitch the 8th and 9th innings to get the win.
4/19/2011 – Postponed by rain.
4/20/2011 – Kane County Cougars lose to Burlington Bees, 8-3
Leondy Perez – 6 IP, 4 R, 1 ER, 6 H
Leondy Perez had not allowed a run in 15 2/3 innings before giving up four in the seventh taking the loss.
4/20/2011 – Kane County Cougars lose to Burlington Bees, 6-1
Nick Wooley – 3 IP, 2 R, 3 H
The Cougars just couldn’t get it going in the double dip. There really wasn’t much good going on all day for Kane County as they drop to 5-9 on the season.
4/21/2010 – Kane County Cougars defeat the Clinton LumberKings, 8-4
Keaton Heyenga – 5 IP, 4 R, 4 ER, 6 H
The Cougars improve to 6-9 on the season and ditch their losing skid. Every starter had a hit today including Ryan Stovall who continues to be a leader on this team offensively.
High A (Wilmington):
4/15/2011 – Wilmington Blue Rocks defeat Potomac Nationals, 5-4
Tyler Sample – 3 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 2 BB, 1 SO
Tyler Sample showed good work in limited time. Giving up no runs in 3 innings and looked to have his pitches under control. Rey Navarro continued his electric start to the season going 4/5 on the day. They are only getting limited innings of work but this rotation has something going on down in Wilmington. It’s good to know that if some of the other players in AA or AAA don’t pan out (Montgomery, Duffy, Lamb, etc.) then there is some more depth down below that can come up and fill in.
4/16/2011 – Postponed due to rain
4/17/2011 – Wilmington Blue Rocks defeat Potomac Nationals, 6-0
Wilmington Blue Rocks defeat Potomac Nationals, 6-5
The Blue Rocks had a double dip on Sunday to make up for the rain postponed game from Saturday. The first game was only 7 innings but Noel Arguelles showed up and pitched another solid outing giving up no runs in 4 innings of work. Odorizzi had a bit of a tougher outing that his first game giving up 4 runs (only 2 earned) in 3 innings. John Whittleman continues his solid start to the season by adding a homerun in the second game.
4/18/2011 – Wilmington Blue Rocks defeat the Kinston Indians, 5-3
Rey Navarro – 2/3, 2 R, 1 RBI; Jose Bonilla – 2/4, 2 RBI
Pimentel put together a solid outing and Kevin Chapman came in and struck out the side to get his third save of the season. Navarro continues his red hot start to the season, to the point that I am losing adjectives to describe how hot he is really hitting. From now on I should just put his slash line which currently sits at .513/.548/.795/1.342.
4/19/2011 – Wilmington Blue Rocks fall to the Kinston Indians, 7-3
Tim Melville – 4.1 IP, 4 R, 4 ER, 12 H, 3 BB, 4 SO; Ryan Dennick – 1 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB
Whit Merrifield – 2/4, 1 R, 1 2B
Tim Melville struggled with his control and got himself into a lot of trouble allowing 4 runs in just over 4 innings of work. The Indians were the first to slow down Rey Navarro and his electric start to the season on their way to stopping the Blue Rocks’ 6-game winning streak.
4/20/2011 – Wilmington Blue Rocks lose to the Kinston Indians, 4-1
Tyler Sample – 5.2 IP, 2 R, 2 ER, 7 H, 2 BB, 5 SO
Alex McClure – 2/4, 1 2B; Nick Francis – 1/4, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI
The Blue Rocks got another solid outing from Sample as he has gotten off to a solid start to the season with an ERA hovering just about 2 at 2.03 and a 1.37 WHIP. Francis tried to spark the offense and get the team back into the game with a homerun in the 5thbut it didn’t quite work as the K-Tribe was able to shut the Blue Rocks down the rest of the game to get out with the win.
4/21/2011 – Wilmington Blue Rocks defeat the Winston-Salem Dash, 7-6
Justin Marks – 5 IP, 3 R, 3 ER, 7 H, 1 BB, 6 SO; Kevin Chapman – 1.1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 SO
Carlo Testa – 2/4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 2 RBI; Tim Ferguson – 1/4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI
The Blue Rocks continue to cruise right along. A 7-3 lead was threatened when Brenden Lafferty and his sweet mustache gave up 1 run in the 7th and 2 in the 8th, but the solid start from Justin Marks didn’t go to waste as Kevin Chapman was able to come in and close out the game for the save. They are young and largely unproven, but there is a lot of talent on this young pitching staff in Wilmington.
Double A (Northwest Arkansas):
4/15/2011 – Northwest Arkansas Naturals get smoked by the San Antonio Missions, 26-5
Jamie Romak (yep, he actually pitched) – 1 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 H
Tim Smith – 3/4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI; Jamie Romak – 2/4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI
This will probably be the only time the same player makes the notable player list for pitchers and hitters. Jamie Romak came in late to pitch to try and stop the bleeding as the Naturals were getting torn up. Will Smith got lit up to start for 6 runs, then Harold Mozingo came in to give up 5, Eduardo Paulino relieved him to give up 5 more and the Naturals were only through 4 innings. Then came in Buddy Baumann to give up 7 more runs followed by Theriot to give up 3 more. Awful game for the Naturals.
4/16/2011 – Northwest Arkansas Naturals lose to the San Antonio Missions, 8-3
Mario Santiago – 3.1 IP, 3 R, 3 ER, 5 H, 4 BB, 2 SO
Jamie Romak – 2/3, 1 RBI, 1 BB; Jeff Bianchi – 1/3, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 BB
Another poor outing from the Naturals giving them a two game skid over the weekend. The Missions seem to have the Naturals number so far as they seem to have the Naturals pitching figured out.
4/17/11 – Northwest Arkansas Naturals defeat the Corpus Christi Hooks, 12-9
Patrick Keating – 1.2 IP, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO
The Naturals get off the schneid with a victory over the Hooks. A good offensive show with a homerun from Will Myers (his first as a Natural) and Jamie Romak who showed some impressive hitting in the game. Romak was the start of the weekend at the plate for the Naturals as they battled poor pitching from their staff all weekend.
4/18/2011 – Northwest Arkansas Naturals defeat the Corpus Christi Hooks, 5-1
Dwyer put together a solid outing in 6 innings that was much better than his first showing of the season. Hopefully he can continue at this level and then he can move up to AAA once either Montgomery or Duffy get the call up later in the season. Salvador Perez awoke from his offensive slumber with a solid game, hopefully he starts to put it together at the plate, and Will Myers hit his second home run of the season for the Naturals.
4/19/2011 – Northwest Arkansas Naturals Lose to Corpus Christi Hooks, 5-3
John Lamb – 4.2 IP, 4 R, 4 ER, 5 H, 1 BB, 5 SO; Eduardo Paulino – 1.1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 SO
Mario Lisson – 2/3, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI; Salvador Perez – 2/4
John Lamb had a bit of a rough outing as the Hooks were able to take one from the Naturals here. Lisson and Perez did their best to bring the team back but the Hooks’ late inning pitching was able to shut NWA down and close out the win.
4/20/2011 – Off Day.
4/21/2011 – Postponed due to rain.
Triple A (Omaha):
4/15/2011 – Postponed due to rain
4/16/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers defeat the Nashville Sounds, 2-1
Danny Duffy – 4.2 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 BB, 7 SO; Louis Coleman – 1 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K
Danny Duffy looked extremely sharp while working with a strict pitch count (taken out after 76 pitches). Duffy, seemed to show good command of his pitches at time looking completely dominant striking out 7 in just under 5 innings of work. Good show on the day from the plate with Hosmer and Lough hitting well and Moustakas adding a little to help the cause as they find a way to win a close one. With the exception of Hosmer, the slow start offensively of the Storm Chasers is a little disconcerting but the pitching is starting to come around and you have to think that adjustments will be made by the hitters.
4/17/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers defeat the Nashville Sounds, 4-1
Mike Montgomery – 6 IP, 1 R, 0 ER, 2 H, 5 BB, 6 SO
Johnny Giavotella – 2/3, 2 RBI; Mike Moustakas – 1/2, 2 R, 1 RBI; Eric Hosmer – 1/3, 1 R; David Lough – 1/2, 1 R, 1 3B, 1 BB
Another solid outing from Mike Montgomery. After a shaky first start, Monty has put together two solid ones not giving up a run in this game (the first of a double header). The 5 walks are a bit concerning but I believe adjustments will be made and a pitcher of Monty’s caliber won’t continue to put up those type of walk numbers (hopefully). Another solid outing at the plate getting good contributions from Moos, Hos, Lough and Gio.
4/17/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers lose to the Nashville Sounds, 5-3
Vin Mazzaro – 5 IP, 3 R, 3 ER, 8 H, 3 BB, 4 SO, 1 HR
Mazzaro gives an outing that wasn’t great but much better than his first start as he lasted into 5 innings this go-round. The walk numbers are still higher than you would like to see but showing improvement is a good sign. Clint Robinson was back in the lineup which is a good sign for his elbow injury which apparently isn’t too big of a deal. Hosmer continues to rake in his hot start as he is hitting .409/.458/.523/.981 through the weekend. The only person in Omaha who can hold a candle to him is Clint Robinson who continues to mash with a .351/.442/.784/1.226 line through the weekend. It’s a good problem to have but with Robinson, Hosmer, and Butler all hitting well the Royals are stacked in the 1B/DH area with Kila as a solid 4th option if needed.
4/18/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers defeat Nashville Sounds, 8-3
Jeff Suppan – 5 IP, 3 R, 3 ER, 5 H, 2 BB; Louis Coleman – 2 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 BB, 5 SO
Clint Robinson – 2/2, 2 BB, 1 RBI; Johnny Giavotella – 3/5, 2 R, 1 RBI; David Lough – 2/4, 1 2B, 1 3B, 3 RBI; Eric Hosmer – 1/4, 1 R, 2 RBI; Mike Moustakas – 1/3, 1 BB, 1 RBI
The offensive stats look gaudy for this game but it mostly happened all in the big second inning where the Storm Chasers dropped 6 runs on the Sounds. Moustakas doubled in a run and with two on Hosmer doubled them both in to start the scoring which continued with Robinson, Lough, and Gio all hitting in the inning. A solid start for Suppan but Louis Coleman came in and really took control. The LSU grad looked dominating striking out 5 of the 6 batters he faced and only giving up one hit.
4/19/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers defeat the Memphis Redbirds, 2-0
Eric Hosmer – 1/2, 1 R, 2 BB; David Lough – 2/4; Mike Moustakas – 1/3
A rare zero RBI game for the Storm Chasers as their two runs came off errors. Teaford looked solid in 6 innings of work, not sure if Teaford projects as a starter or a reliever on the big league level but he had a pretty good showing in this game and has had a decent start to the season. I would imagine that if the Royals need some relief help at the big league level then he could get a call up (if Louis Coleman is already gone). Hosmer continues his hot start to the season as he sits at .400/.464/.520/.984. Moustakas is slowly trying to put things together but is still struggling to find his groove at the plate. Hopefully he wakes up and finds his way to be the hitter we know he can be.
4/20/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers defeat the Memphis RedBirds, 10-4
Clint Robinson – 4/4, 2 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI; Eric Hosmer – 2/3, 3 R, 1 2B; Mike Moustakas – 1/3, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI; David Lough – 2/5, 2 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI
A huge offensive showing for the Storm Chasers as they dominated the RebBirds from the first inning and unloaded offensively throughout the game. The 3-4-5 lineup of Hosmer, Moustakas, and Robinson really showed up and led the charge with a little help from the surprising David Lough. Lough has gotten off to a solid start to the season with a .321 avg, 2 2B, 2 3B, and 2 HR. Kevin Pucetas gave a solid outing and was buttressed nicely by Hardy who put in a dominating two innings. The Storm Chasers are starting to wake up after a 2-6 start they are now 7-7 with Hosmer and C Rob mashing, Moustakas starting to come out of it, and solid starts offensively from Giavotella and Lough.
4/21/2011 – Omaha Storm Chasers defeat the Memphis Redbirds, 1-0
Danny Duffy – 4.1 IP, 0 R, 0 ER, 5 H, 2 BB, 5 SO; Greg Holland – 2 IP, 0 R, 2 H, 3 BB, 5 SO
Mike Moustakas – 1/3, 1 RBI
A classic pitchers duel. Duffy went 4.1 innings giving up no runs and striking out 5. Duffy has been lights out in the early going with a 1.29 ERA, a 1.21 WHIP, and a 4:1 K:BB ratio. He has seemingly been on a pretty strict pitch count which makes me think the Royals are definitely planning on bringing him up this season. The question is does someone like Duffy go right into the rotation or into the bullpen? With Duffy I think bullpen is more what the Royals are thinking and then rotation next year, whereas Montgomery, when he comes up, will be put into the rotation. Mike Moustakas is starting to liven up at the plate and his power is starting to come alive, hopefully he continues to put it together.
Promotions: Blake Wood (AAA – Called to Majors); Louis Coleman (AAA-Called to Majors)
Demotions:Kanekoa Texiera (Majors – Demoted to AAA)
Pitcher of the week: Danny Duffy – This Week: 9 IP, 0 R, 6 H, 3 BB, 12 SO; Season: 1.29 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 0 R, 16 K, 4 BB, FIP 3.20
Danny Duffy has been nothing but lights out all season so far for the Royals. Baseball America’s #68 prospect has been the best part of the Storm Chasers starting rotation looking dominating at times and putting up ridiculous numbers for all the important categories. Duffy was the 3rd round pick of the Royals in 2007 and has shined at all levels. In March of 2010 he retired from baseball after recovering from an elbow injury only to come back in July and have a great season for the organization. The Royals are no stranger to pitchers who have struggled with their talent mentally (*cough* Greinke *cough*), but if it works out for the Royals again with another Cy Young possibly, then I will take it. Not to say that Duffy will take home a Cy Young soon if ever, but if that’s the ceiling, it’s worth it.
Hitter of the week: Eric Hosmer – Week stats: 8/18, 6 R, 2 2B, 4 RBI; Season stats: .393/.477/.518/.995 (Avg/OBP/SLG/OPS), 4 2B, 1 HR, 8 RBI, 9 BB, 8 SO
Hosmer’s talents need not be belabored any further. As the first round pick in 2008 Hosmer has been hyped, hyped, and hyped some more about the future of the Royals both at first base and offensively. Baseball America’s #8 prospect for 2011, Hosmer has been tearing it up in the early going at AAA. He has been the Storm Chasers best average hitter and showed some good gap power with his doubles. I think Hosmer is more of a Billy Butler type hitter hitting more for average but he will also have more power than Butler and I would imagine routinely be in that 25-30 HR range. Everyone has been excited about Hosmer and he has done nothing to change people’s minds so far. It will be an exciting day for Kansas City baseball when he makes his way to the big league club.
Topics: AL Central, Baseball, Danny Duffy, Elisaul Pimentel, Eric Hosmer, Jake Odorizzi, John Lamb, Johnny Giavotella, Kansas City Royals, KC, Leondy Perez, Mario Santiago, Mike Montgomery, MLB, Murray Watts, Noel Arguelles, Patrick Keating, Rey Navarro, Royals, Ryan Stovall, Salvador Perez, Tyler Sample