Saturday, August 2, 2008

Sunday pre game

The Pirates traded Indy middle infielder Josh Wilson, 27, originally from Mt. Lebanon, to the Boston Red Sox for a player to be named later Saturday.

Wilson was batting .276 with 5 HR and 32 RBI in 97 games at Indy. He has some MLB experience with Tampa Bay, Washington, and Florida, with a career average of .233 in 116 games.

> This may have flown under the radar, but Rotoworld reported that the Rockies tried to deal for Ian Snell before the deadline.

The Pirates wanted LHP Franklin Morales, 22, (1-2, 6.39 ERA) and prospects RHP Esmil Rogers, 22, (8-6, 4.55 ERA in A ball) and SS Chris Nelson, 22, (the Rox top pick in 2005; he's in AA, and broke his hamate bone in June; that must be the injury d' jour) in return for him. Colorado thought it was too much.

The price is high, but not outrageous, as both prospects are in the second half of Colorado's top 10. Snell's stock has fallen some this year, but so has that of Morales. The Pittsburgh suits held to their guns and wouldn't deal unless they thought the return was right.

The Rox didn't come up with another arm during the trade period, and may try to land Snell in a waiver deal if they can come to terms with Pittsburgh. Then again, they could go the Josh Fogg route, according to the Denver Post.

Interestingly, other teams that took a look at Snell during the trade period, like the Mets, saw him as a bullpen arm with the potential to close in time. High pitch counts as a starter, power arm featuring a fastball and slider - it does add up.

> The Pirates still haven't had two starters throw quality starts in back-to-back games since late June. Sunday's starter, right-hander Ian Snell, hasn't thrown one since June 11, which was also the last time he won. Not that one has anything to do with the other, of course.

> Do you ever wonder what tweaks pitching coaches come up with? In Sean Burnett's case, in June he and pitching coach Jeff Andrews moved his push foot from the first-base side of the rubber to the far third-base side. That shift got his slider down with better movement, and has been the key in Burny's resurgence.

> An old Pirate is worth big bucks on the market - the trading card market. A 1909 Honus Wagner baseball card was sold for $1.62 million at a memorabilia auction in Chicago, a sports auction company said Saturday. His more famous T206 card sold for $2.8M last year. Wagner himself never got a contract worth over $10,000 in his career.

> Jay Bay and Manny Ramirez homered yesterday for their new teams. Just sayin'...

On the minor league front:
Indy won 11-3, banging out 18 hits against Toledo. 3B Matt Kata (.245) led the way, collecting four hits, including a double and his 7th HR with 3 RBI and 2 runs scored. SS Brian Bixler (.281) added three hits and scored twice. OF Nyjer Morgan (.270), 1B Jason Delaney (.250), and C Michel Hernadez (.267), each had a pair of hits.

RHP Evan Meek has been named Indianapolis Player of the Month for July. He turned in an 0.51 ERA with no decisions over nine relief appearances in July, and allowed just one walk, eight hits and a .133 batting average, while striking out 16 in 17.2 innings.

During the month, Meek led all Tribe hurlers in ERA, batting average against, strikeout-to-walk ratio and WHIP (0.51).

> Altoona got run over by Bowie, 12-2. 2B Shelby Ford (.270) had a pair of hits and scored.

> Lynchburg lost 6-5 to Myrtle Beach. 3B Danny Bomback (.417), a recent Hickory call-up, had two hits, including his first HR, an RBI and 2 runs scored. DH/OF Eddie Prasch added two hits, including a double, and scored and drove home a run.

> HIckory lost, 7-4. 2B Greg Picard (.259) had two knocks, including his first homer and 2 RBI, RF Erik Huber (.269) had two hits and an RBI, and 1B Tom Hagan (.277) added a pair of singles.

> State College lost to Batavia, 6-5 in 10 innings. CF Ciro Rosero had three hits, scored a run and had an RBI. DH/OF Andrew Biela (.293), C Mark Carver (.197), SS Chase D'Arnaud (.283), and 2B Chad Rice (.233) had a pair of knocks apiece.

> Bradenton beat the Red's GCL squad 5-1. RHP Gabriel Alvarado, 21, (3-1, 3.19 ERA) went five shutout innings, giving up three hits while striking out 4 for the win. Ronny Paulino, DH'ing while in rehab, went 3-3 with a double, run scored, and RBI.

18-year old SS Benjamin Gonzalez (.205) had two hits, including a double & a walk, and scored twice for the baby Bucs. In his first game, LF Jose Tabata was 1 for 2 with a double and a run scored, and RF Edward Garcia (.176) hit his second home run, a two-out, three-run shot.

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