BAPR Plus: August 2

Jeff Samardzija is surprisingly moving up to Double-A while Joba Chamberlain found himself back down in Double-A. But don’t worry Yankees fans, Chamberlain’s move was only part of a roster shuffle that will likely find him with the Yankees as soon as this weekend.

Steven Pearce stole a base in the opener and hit his first Triple-A home run in the nightcap as Indianapolis split a doubleheader with Richmond. The former South Carolina star has made the leap from high Class A to Triple-A this year and is now hitting .340/.405/.646 between his three stops.

Clay Buchholz is still looking for his first Triple-A win. Buchholz allowed two runs in 6 1/3 innings while striking out nine on Wednesday, but left with the game tied 2-2. As the Providence Journal points out, Buchholz was able to use his secondary stuff as out pitches–only one of his nine strikeouts came on a fastball.

Reds fans haven’t had too many reasons to celebrate this season, but Louisville gave them a reason to cheer on Wednesday. Jay Bruce hit his fifth home run in 21 games since being promoted to Triple-A while Johnny Cueto allowed two hits in six scoreless innings while striking out four. It was Cueto’s second Triple-A start but his first since being promoted to the Bats to stay–he was called up for a spot start in late May.

Las Vegas’ Andy LaRoche hit his fourth home run in the past six games in a 4-3 loss to Omaha. But if you’re looking for a shocking stat, here’s the stat of the day: Omaha reliever Neil Musser made his 23 appearance of the season for Omaha and he still has a 0.00 ERA. In 40 1/3 innings Musser has allowed 22 hits, 10 walks and 33 strikeouts.

Terry Evans doubled twice and tripled in Salt Lake’s 13-7 win over Albuquerque.

Adam Jones and Wladimir Balentien homered for Tacoma as the Rainiers scored 10 runs in the second inning but still lost. For that the Rainiers can blame Memphis’ Tag Bozied. Bozied his a pair of home runs including a grand slam as the Redbirds rallied to win a 16-13 slugfest. Bozied has now five home runs in his past four games. The Tacoma News-Tribune notes that Bozied’s last grand slam in Tacoma came in 2004 when he ruptured his patella tendon in the ensuing celebration at home plate.


Max Scherzer allowed two runs in six innings and doubled himself but he was still charged with the loss in a 2-1 Mississippi win. Mobile came back to win the nightcap as Brooks Brown gave up two runs in 5 1/3 innings.

Andrew McCutchen hit his seventh home run of the season for Altoona. McCutchen is continuing to find Double-A a struggle–he hit .309 in July but his power has largely disappeared–he has 10 extra-base hits in his last 208 at-bats. In comparison he had seven extra base hits in 78 at-bats in his brief stint in Double-A last season. Reading’s Greg Golson hit his first Double-A home run in the first game of the doubleheader.

The best pitching matchup of the night occurred in New Britain, Conn., where Jair Jurrjens put on a display of domination. Jurrjens struck out 10 while alllowing only three hits in a complete-game shutout. Jurrjens didn’t even reach a three-ball count once all night. Oswaldo Sosa was very good himself as he gave up one earned run in seven innings.

Trenton’s Daniel McCutchen threw five scoreless innings in his first start since being promoted from high Class A Tampa. More importantly Joba Chamberlain struck out two of the three batters he faced in his second relief appearance. The Newark Star-Ledger reported that Chamberlain got a strikeout on a 97 mph fastball and an 87 mph slider and then broke a bat for a groundout on a 98 mph fastball. If you’re wondering why Chamberlain was pitching in Double-A it apparently was brought about because Scranton was in Ottawa while Trenton was playing at nearby Binghamton, with Chamberlain’s promotion expected to come in the next few days apparently the Yankees decided they wanted to make sure he was nearby.

Matt Maloney struck out 10 while allowing one run in seven innings for Chattanooga in his Reds debut, but he still got the loss as Sam Narron threw a complete-game shutout for Huntsville.

Colby Rasmus has been stuck in a slump but the Springfield center fielder broke out in a big way last night. Rasmus hit a pair of home runs and drove in three as Springfield beat Arkansas. He only had one home run in July and Rasmus was hitting .203 since June 1. Springfield also got a home run from Amaury Marti who just arrived after spending past three months on loan to the Mexican League.

Colt Morton hit a pair of home runs as San Antonio beat Corpus Christi.

High Class A

Kyle McCulloch left with a no-hitter after six innings but his bullpen blew it as Salem rallied to Winston-Salem 6-4.

When compiling the Florida State League best tools surveys, Allen Craig got some support as the best power prospect in the league. Craig hit a pair of doubles in the first game of a doubleheader as Palm Beach swept Daytona. Tyler Norrick outdueled Jeff Samardzija in the nightcap. Norrick threw a complete-game shutout although Samardzija also pitched well (two runs in six innings). The Cubs announced after the game that Samardzija was being promoted to Double-A Tennessee even though he was 3-8, 4.95 with a .323 opponents batting average.

“I think they pretty much felt like next year he was going to be (at Double A) anyway so why not give him five or six starts there and let him get all the media stuff out of the way,” Jody Davis told the Daytona News-Journal. “If he can go up there and have three or four good starts, that will be more important than what he did here.”

Chris Marrero hit a pair of home runs to snap out of his minor slump as Potomac beat Wilmington.

Low Class A
Chris Vinyard and Bill Rowell homered in the nightcap of a doubleheader but Kannapolis still swept the Shorebirds.

Recent waiver pickup Alexander Smith threw 6 2/3 scoreless innings and Juan Francisco and Zach Cozart hit two of Dayton’s four home runs as the Dragons beat Wisconsin. The home runs was Cozart’s first as a pro–he was the Reds second-round pick this June.

Jeremy Jeffress allowed one run in six innings to pick up his third win while Brent Brewer hit a pair of home runs in West Virginia’s 9-1 win over Columbus.

John Raynor went 4-for-4 with his 10th home run and stole his 49th base as Greensboro shutout Savannah.

Short-Season/Rookie Leagues

Adrian Alaniz keeps rolling along. Alaniz picked up his sixth win of the season and his fifth in his last five starts as Vermont beat Hudson Valley. He did allow two earned runs raised his ERA to a still undetectable 0.98.

Four Auburn pitchers combined to strike out 14 batters while allowing only two hits in a 6-0 shutout of Jamestown.

Andrew Lambo hit his fifth home run as the Gulf Coast League Dodgers beat the GCL Marlins.

Bluefield’s Pat Egan and Ezequiel Selen combined to one hit Greeneville.

Andy D’Alessio hit his eighth home run in 29 games for the AZL Giants. The former Clemson slugger was the Giants 19th-round pick.

Cooper Brannan was one of the great stories of the spring when the Padres announced they were signing the 22-year-old Marine corporal. Unfortunately Brannan’s first pro season hasn’t had a storybook beginning. Brannan dropped to 1-2, 8.16 after giving up two runs in 1 2/3 innings for the AZL Padres.