BAPR Plus: May 29

Whenever a hitting streak stretches past 30 games, it’s time to take notice. Charleston first baseman Mitch Hilligoss had no trouble extending his hitting streak to 34 games on Monday with a 3-for-6 night.
Triple-A

Jason Hammel has had problems with his teammates scoring runs for him. So Hammel took things into his own hands on Monday, throwing a complete-game five-hit shutout. He needed only 100 pitches to shut down Ottawa while his teammates for once gave him plenty of run support in a 8-0 win.

Rochester was shut out for the second consecutive game as Lance Cormier and two relievers held the Red Wings to six hits. Jose Mijares was a bright spot for Rochester. He struck out threee in three scoreless innings of relief in his Triple-A debut.

Roger Clemens showed he’s ready to return to the big leagues with a dominating performance against Trenton. Clemens threw six shutout innings as he was in complete command. While Clemens was obviously the story of the day, there was also another impressive outing for reliever Edwar Ramirez who had three strikeouts in two innings in relief of Clemens. Eric Duncan happily gave up his number 22 to let Clemens have it for a night. Ramirez, recently promoted to Scranton, is now a combined 3-0, 0.39 with 43 strikeouts and 10 walks in 23 innings between Double-A Trenton and Triple-A Scranton. Using a plus changeup, Ramirez has allowed only nine hits all season for a .113 opponents batting average.

Homer Bailey put together another outstanding outing. Bailey allowed one run in seven innings while striking out nine. He’s allowed more than one run only twice in his nine starts as he lowered his ERA to 1.89. Bailey threw 76 strikes in 101 pitches in one of his better displays of command this season. Joey Votto drove in two and stole his fifth base for the Bats.

John Van Benschoten picked up his fifth win with 6 2/3 shutout innings and Rajai Davis tripled and drove in two runs for Indianapolis.

Rick Ankiel keeps getting closer and closer to a shocking comeback. Ankiel homered twice on Monday as Memphis beat Round Rock 11-6.

Daric Barton’s 4-for-4 night led Sacramento over Colorado Springs.

Tyler Lumsden’s was adequate but nothing more, Mike Pelfrey wasn’t any better, but Billy Butler homered and had three hits to help Omaha beat New Orleans.

Felix Pie hit only .224 in the majors, but he’s finding Triple-A pitchers much more to his liking. Pie has four hits on Monday, raising his average to .406/.467/.604 in 106 at-bats.

Double-A

Neil Walker had three hits including a home run and a game-winning 10th-inning RBI single as Altoona beat Bowie.

The matchup of Chuck Lofgren and Dallas Trahern should have been an outstanding pitching duel. Trahern got the better of Lofgren for his seventh win, but neither was dominant. Trahern gave up four runs (three earned) while Lofgren gave up five runs. The Akron Beacon-Journal also notes that Akron outfielder Ryan Goleski has hit only one home run all year. Goleski had a wrist injury that the A’s did not know about when they picked him in the Rule 5 draft. While the A’s determined that the injury was healed well enough for him to play during spring training, it seems like the lingering effects from the injury are still around long after he was sent back to the Indians.

Alan Horne improved to 5-2 when he allowed only one earned run in Trenton’s 7-6 win over Connectict.

Clay Buchholz couldn’t locate his curveball and overthrew his fastball frequently on Monday. That makes his outing (5 2/3 shutout innings allowing only two hits) even more impressive.

Kris Honel didn’t make it out of the second inning on the same day that Birmingham learned that closer Dewon Day was headed to the big leagues.

Richie Gardner will probably never have the stuff he had before suffering a torn labrum, but he is showing plenty of signs of life after missing nearly two seasons. Gardner allowed only three hits in five shutout innings as Chattanooga beat Mississippi. Gardner showed an 88-91 mph fastball and a solid changeup and slider according to manager Jayhawk Owens.

Justin Upton finished a double short of the cycle as he hit his sixth home run with Mobile on Monday.

Colby Rasmus went 0-for-12 on Springfield’s road trip to Corpus Christi. But he bounced back to hit two home runs on Monday.

High Class A
Matt Antonelli and Chad Huffman homered and Manny Ayala fired six shutout innings as Lake Elsinore beat Lancaster.

Taylor Teagarden has had an impressive May. While he is hitting .324 this month, identical to his average in May, he has hit seven of his nine home runs this month, raising his overall numbers to .324/.481/.687. Teagarden’s home run on Monday wasn’t enough as Bakersfield fell to High Desert.

Brian Bogusevic allowed one run in six innings as Salem won its eighth straight game.

Low Class A

Aaron Breit gave up nine runs in 1 2/3 innings as West Michigan finished off a shellacking of Fort Wayne.

Fans love when a major leaguer makes a rehab appearance because it gives them a chance to see a big leaguer in action. Minor league general managers love it because it leads to increased tickets sales, but minor league players love rehab stints because of the food. Rehabbing pitcher Eddie Guardado bought his temporary Dayton teammates Arby’s before the game, Subway between games and Outback after the second game of Monday’s doubleheader. His appreciative teammates went out and swept South Bend as Justin Turner and Juan Francisco homered for Dayton.

Starters Jake Renshaw and Marco Carrillo handcuffed Wisconsin hitters in a sweep of a doublheader.

Mike McClendon allowed one hit in seven shutout innings to lead West Virginia to an easy 4-0 win over Greenville. The Brewers’ 2006 first-rounder Jeremy Jeffress will make his 2007 debut today.

It had been a long, long wait for this day. Jeff Sues, a 2005 fifth-rounder, made his pro debut on Monday after missing two seasons with a back injury. Unfortunately for Sues, it wasn’t a storybook start. Sues gave up nine runs in 3 1/3 innings in a blowout loss to Asheville.

Jeanmar Gomez was an unlikely hero for Lake County. The starter allowed only three hits in six shutout innings to lead the Captains to a win. Gomez came into the game with a 7.12 ERA.

Mitch Hilligoss just keeps on hitting. Hilligoss went 3-for-6 to extend his hitting streak to 34 games. He’s now only one game away from tying Scott Seabol’s South Atlantic League record set in 1999. Hilligoss has a long ways to go to get the overall minor league record–Joe Dimaggio hit in 61 straight games for the San Francisco Seals in 1934.

Minors |

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