Daily Dish: July 21


See also: Thursdays’s Daily Dish
See also: Today’s Baseball America Prospect Report


ZEBULON, N.C.–Given the
resounding success Brewers prospect Yovani Gallardo has enjoyed this
summer, his recent performance, while not poor by most standards, might
have seemed like reason for alarm for the 20-year-old righthander.

His two outings that sandwiched his one-inning stint in the Future’s
Game were out of character, as Gallardo walked seven and allowed two
runs in successive starts. He was somewhat underwhelming in Pittsburgh
at the Future’s Game as well, but Gallardo was back to his dominant
self on Thursday, racking up nine strikeouts in six shutout innings for
Double-A Huntsville in a 9-0 win at Carolina.

“His poise on the mound is so present, it’s just ridiculous,”
Huntsville pitching coach Rich Sauveur said. “The command of the
pitches, which was much better last night that it had been in the last
couple of outings, was very impressive. That was the Gallardo we know.”

Gallardo, just two years removed from playing for a high school in downtown Fort
Worth, Texas, that faced inferior competition, is showing all the
attributes of an experienced, well-schooled prospect. Composure and command are Gallardo’s hallmarks. He showed above-average
command of three pitches–a slider, fastball and changeup–while
getting plenty of poor swings against Carolina.

His fastball sat near 92 mph, touching 94. Although he worked deep in
the count too often–he threw 91 pitches, 61 of which were strikes–his
ability to make put-away pitches with runners in scoring position was
evident. He allowed leadoff runners to reach base in four of his six
innings, but recorded a strikeout each time he needed to.

“He’s the real deal,” manager Don Money said. “He’s a very mature kid, and he has as good a fastball last night as he’s had for us since he’s been here.”

Gallardo’s changeup was his best secondary offering. It’s a hard pitch,
at 84 mph, with cutting action rather than the traditional fading break
of most changeups.

“When he came up to (Double-A) and showed that to me, I said, that’s
just outstanding,’ ” Sauveur said. “It’s more like a FOSH change with
the grip itself, which makes the cutting action. It’s been a damn good
pitch.”

The win was Gallardo’s first since joining Huntsville less than a month
ago, and his ERA dipped to 0.59. In 30 innings he’s allowed just 21
hits, with 34 strikeouts and 10 walks. Gallardo, a second-round pick in
2004, was among the league leaders in the Florida State League before
jumping to Double-A. He was 6-3, 2.09 with 103 strikeouts in 78 innings
with 54 hits and 23 walks at high Class A.

“He can run it, cut it, adds and subtracts–he does what he wants to
out there,” a scout said. “And he’s 20 in Double-A? This guy’s pretty
good. Probably a No. 3 starter, heck, you can even say No. 2.”

—ALAN MATTHEWS


A New York Marathon

When Brooklyn manager George Greer was ejected in the first inning of
yesterday’s game, he probably didn’t think he would be waiting in the
clubhouse for six hours for it to end. But that is what happened as
Brooklyn and Oneonta played 26 innings, with Oneonta prevailing 6-1
after the game was tied at one for 21 innings.

“I went to my office and piece by piece got undressed,” Greer told New
York Newsday. “I watched all 26 innings on closed-circuit TV saying
‘Please, just let us get a run.’ “

The Cyclones scored their lone run in the first inning and did not
score again for 25 innings. Their offensive futility was highlighted by
outfielder Dustin Martin, who went 0-for-11 and infielder Jacob Eigsti,
who played third base and shortstop, went 0-for-10 with four strikeouts.

After using six pitchers through 24 innings, outfielder Mark Wright
volunteered to pitch for the first time since his junior year in high
school. He tossed a scoreless 25th, but the Tigers tagged him for five
in the top of the 26th to earn the win. Their offense was paced by
shortstop Scott Sizemore, who went 5-for-10 and is now hitting
.346/.401/.496.

It was Kids Camp Day at KeySpan Park and 9,004 fans were on hand to watch the game that started that noon.

It was the longest game in the history of the New-York Penn League, but
fell seven innings short of the minor league record of 33 that was set
by Triple-A Rochester and Pawtucket in 1981.

—MATT MEYERS


QUICK HITS

• Houston has promoted righthander Matt Albers to the big leagues from
Double-A Corpus Christi. The 23-year-old was 10-2, 2.17 in 116 innings
for the Hooks. In the franchise’s two years of existence, he is the
first player to get the call directly to the majors.

• Phillies righthander Scott Mathieson picked up a win in his second
Triple-A start for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. The 22-year-old Canadian
threw 121 pitches over 7 2/3 innings, allowing five runs on seven hits.
He struck out nine and walked three Durham batters in a game the Red
Barons won 8-5. Mathieson cruised until he had two outs in the eighth,
at which point he walked a batter, hit the next and then allowed a
three-run home run to Darnell McDonald. “He had a relatively easy start
last time when he threw only 102 pitches,” Scranton manager John
Russell said. “So we wanted to give him more work. If he gets called
back up to the big leagues, he’s going to need to be able to throw up
to 120 pitches in a given outing.” McDonald extended his hitting streak to 25
games and surpassed Buffalo’s Ben Francisco for the longest hit streak
in the International League this year while extending his Bulls’ team
record. The previous team record was 23 games, set by Steve Cox in 1999.

• Twins righthander Matt Garza, 22, made everything look easy in his
second start for Triple-A Rochester, as the Red Wings defeated Syracuse
7-2 in a game shortened to six innings by rain. Garza went all six and
allowed two runs on four hits. He struck out eight SkyChiefs (walking
just one) and impressed Syracuse manager Mike Basso with the quality
and breadth of his stuff. “Garza had a good fastball and good change
last night,” he said. “He didn’t have his breaking stuff working for
the first three innings, but he was real tough to handle when he got
them over later in the game.” Garza has zoomed to Triple-A in his first
full season, where he’s off to a 1-1, 3.46 start.

• High Class A Frederick outfielder Nolan Reimold delivered a pinch-hit,
three-run home run in the top of the eighth as the Keys came from
behind to defeat Kinston, 5-4. Facing Indians closer T.J. Burton–who
threw almost all curveballs during his warm-up tosses–Reimold drilled
an 0-1 hanging breaking ball over the left-field wall. “I think that
was the first pinch-hit I ever got in my life,” Reimold said. “I don’t
remember one–ever. But it was good to come in the game and contribute.
All I kept seeing were curveballs, he started me off with a curveball,
so I was sitting curveball.”

• Cubs lefthander Donald Veal has been sterling since getting promoted
from low Class A Peoria to high Class A Daytona, but he came up with
his best outing yet Thursday against Clearwater. That’s no easy task
for a guy who started his Florida State League career with 24 1/3
consecutive innings without giving up an earned run. The 21-year-old
lefthander threw five hitless, shutout innings against the Threshers,
striking out nine and walking four. He improved to 3-1, 1.03 with 32
strikeouts in 35 innings in the FSL. He does have 20 walks, but he has
been able to escape trouble by holding hitters to a .164 average.

• Diamondbacks righthander Cesar Valdez threw a complete game for
short-season Yakima, picking up his fourth win in the Bears’ 4-1
victory against Salem-Keizer.  He gave up only one run on six hits
and fanned eight batters, while walking none.  For the season,
he’s 4-3, 2.20 in 45 innings. It was his first complete game this
season, and the first complete game thrown in the Northwest League this
season.

• Boise outfielder Tyler Colvin is finally breaking out his
bat.  He’s 8-for-16 in his last three games, with eight RBIs, four
doubles, a triple and a home run.

• Padres third baseman Felix Carrasco
was a single short of the cycle last night. He went 3-for-5 with three
RBIs and four runs scored in the Rookie-level Arizona League. The Padres signed Carrasco earlier this year out of the Dominican Republic.

Contributing: Matt Eddy, Chris Kline, John Manuel, Kristin Pratt.

Minors | #2006 #Daily Dish

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