Friday, April 17, 2009

Minor League Report

Back when I was working for the Orioles, my fellow intern deskmate (yes, we shared a desk... and a phone... and a computer) and I were responsible for authoring a weekly minor league report. Today, this would be a relatively simple task. In 2003, however, this project consumed our entire day on Friday, even after significant prep work Monday through Thursday. There was no publically available player database, and our computer was s-l-o-w. Still, this was one of my favorite tasks; I love scouring box scores and day-by-day stats. Since this Orioles season is split into two parts--offensively on the Major League level and pitching in the minors--I thought I'd give a Minor League Report a shot again, at least for the upper levels of the organization. Hopefully, this will be a recurring feature.

AAA Norfolk Tides... The Tides are 3-4, 3.0 games behind South Division leading Durham. After being swept in a 3-game set at Durham, Norfolk bounced back to take 3 out of 4 from Charlotte. The club completes a 10-game road trip this weekend with a 3-game set at Gwinnet and returns home to face Charlotte in a 3-game series beginning on Monday.

Everyone's favorite catcher, Matt Wieters, hit his first home run of the season last night. After an 0-for-7 start, Wieters has 6 hits in his last 16 at-bats (.375). OF Nolan Reimold is also off to a hot start, hitting safely in 6 of the team's first 7 games. He homered in back-to-back games to open the season and is currently batting .367/.394/.600 with 4 runs scored and 7 RBI. OF Lou Montanez leads the Tides with a .483 batting average having hit safely in every game thus far and recording multiple hits 5 times. P Brad Bergesen is making his case for joining the rotation in Baltimore, throwing 11.0 innings over two starts, allowing 3 ER (2.45 ERA), 6 hits and 3 walks while recording 9 strikeouts. He recorded his first victory in Wednesday's win over Charlotte. P Chris Tillman impressed in his first start of season, tossing 4.0 no-hit innings, allowing 3 walks while striking out 5. P David Hernandez threw 4.2 innings against Durham on April 12, allowing just 1 earned run, 2 hits, and 2 walks while recording an impressive 9 strikeouts.

AA Bowie Baysox... The Baysox are 5-3, 0.5 games behind Southern Division leading Akron. Bowie opened the season by dropping 3 out of 4 at Akron, swept a 3-game set at Erie and defeated Akron in Bowie last night. After completing the 4-game series with Akron on Sunday, Bowie will host Erie for a 3-game series beginning on Monday.

1B Brandon Snyder recorded a 7-game hitting streak to begin the season, going 13-for-30 (.433) with 2 homers and 7 RBI over that stretch. P Troy Patton opened the season 2-0, tossing 11.0 shut out innings while striking out 9 and allowing 6 hits and 3 walks in his first two starts. P Jake Arrieta is 1-0 with a 1.00 ERA (9.o IP, 1 ER) after his first two starts. He's struck out 12, given up 8 hits and allowed 5 walks. P Brandon Erbe has made one start, giving up 1 run in 3.0 no-hit innings (3.00 ERA), walking 4 while striking out 1.

High-A Frederick Keys... The Keys are 5-3, 1.0 games behind Northern Division leading Lynchburg. Frederick opened the with a 4-game split at Salem and took 3 out of 4 in Myrtle Beach. Tonight is the home opener against Salem, and after wrapping up the 3-game series, the Keys hit the road for a 3-game set against Lynchburg.

2B Ryan Adams is off to a hot start, recording 8 hits in his first 22 at-bats to lead the team with a .364 batting average. OF Billy Rowell popped his first home run of the season last night, and has record two doubles and a homer in his last four games. 2008 first round draft pick P Brian Matusz picked up his first professional win on Tuesday. He's allowed 5 ER in 9.2 IP (4.66 ERA) while striking out 10, allowing 9 hits and walking 5.

If there are any specific players you'd like me to follow, let me know. I'll try and keep up with the top draft choices and a few other fan favorites, as well as anyone playing particularly well. In the meantime, so far so good for your 2010 Baltimore Orioles!

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