Neyer Doesn't Agree with Benching Jack Wilson

ESPN’s Rob Neyer found Dejan’s article on the splinter in Jack Wilson’s behind. Interestingly enough, on his Insider blog—subscription required—Neyer implies that Wilson shouldn’t have been benched: [Jose] Castillo’s no better with the bat than Wilson. [Brian] Bixler’s not been considered a strong defender, and his minor-league OBP entering this season was .356, so he’s not exactly...

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Indy Indians: Stat Rats

The Indianapolis Indians have a day off today. So, I was perusing the stats pages…..
Indians are …
#1 in BA — .283; Buffalo is 2nd — .272
#1 in OBP — .354; Buffalo is 2nd — .347
#2 in SLG — .413; Buffalo is 1st — .426
#2 in OPS — .768; Buffalo is 1st — .773
#1 in Runs scored — 329; Buffalo is 2nd — 320
#1 in hits — 611; Louisville is 2nd — 578
#5 in doubles — 115; Toledo is 1st — 130
tied for first with Louisville in triples — 19
#10 in homers — 43; Durham is 1st — 73
#3 in RBI — 298; Buffalo is 1st — 300, and Toledo is 2nd — 299
#9 in walks — 203; Louisville is 1st — 256
#11 in strikeouts (that’s good) — 398; Durham is 1st — 620
#1 in stolen bases — 95; Buffalo, Charlotte, and Richmond are tied for 2nd — 65; Ottawa is last — 30
The team leader in each category (more than just a few at bats) :
AVG: Yurendell de Caster — .342; 1st in the International League
OBP: Yurendell de Caster — .451; 1st in the IL
SLG: Brian Bixler — .481; 16th in the IL (David Parrish has .485 in 33 AB’s, and Chris Truby has .526 in 19 AB’s)
OPS: Yurendell de Caster — .917; 5th in the IL
Runs: Brian Bixler — 44; tied with three others for 1st in IL
Hits: Rajai Davis — 67; 11th in the IL [Brian Bixler has 65, 16th in the IL]
Doubles: Luis Matos — 16; tied for 7th in the IL
Triples: Brian Bixler — 7; tied for 1st in the IL
HR: Jose Hernandez — 6; tied for 32nd in the IL
RBI: Rajai Davis–30 and Brian Bixler — 29; 24th and 28th in the IL
Walks: Yurendell de Caster — 35; 7th in the IL
Strikeouts: Brian Bixler –44; highest in the IL is Mike Hessman (Toledo) with 79
Stolen bases: Rajai Davis –27; Nyjer Morgan — 22; Brian Bixler — 12
Davis is still 1st and Morgan 3rd in the IL, and Bixler is 8th.

The Indians are….
#7 in ERA — 3.74; Richmond is 1st — 3.23
#9 in WHIP — 1.40; Rochester is 1st — 1.22
#6 in Innings Pitched — 568.1; Toledo is 1st — 598.2
#11 in Complete games –none; Rochester is 1st — 7
tied for 2nd in shutouts — 6; Richmond is 1st — 8
4th in Saves — 21; Norfolk is 1st — 23
9th in Hits — 551; Norfolk is 1st — 588
11th in Runs — 264; Buffalo is 1st — 317
10th in Earned runs — 236; Buffalo is 1st — 280
13th in Home runs — 40; Columbus is 1st — 65, and Richmond is last — 36
3rd in Walks — 247; Charlotte is 1st — 273
Last (14th) in Strikeouts — 372; Durham is 1st — 528
9th in Hit Batters — 25; Norfolk is 1st — 40
The team leader in each category (more than just a few innings pitched) :
Wins: Bryan Bullington — 9; 1st in the International League
Losses: Shane Youman — 5; 10th in the IL
Saves: Franquelis Osoria and Dan Kolb — 4; Cory Doyne of Norfolk has 19
ERA (relievers ): Masumi Kuwata — 0, Franquelis Osoria — 2.27
ERA (starters ): John VanBenschoten — 2.73; 4th in IL
WHIP (relievers ): Kuwata –0.69; Brian Rogers — 1.04
WHIP (starters ): Bryan Bullington — 1.22; 11th in IL
Innings Pitched : Bryan Bullington — 76.1; 3rd in the IL
Hits: Shane Youman — 76; 9th in the IL
Runs: Shane Youman — 36; 20th in the IL
Earned Runs: Shane Youman — 34; 18th in the IL
Homers: Bryan Bullington and Michael Tejera — 5; Heath Phillips of Charlotte has 15
Walks: Sean Burnett — 33; tied for 3rd in the IL
Strikeouts: Bryan Bullington — 46; Virgil Vasquez of Toledo has 79
Hit Batters: John VanBenschoten — 5; tied for 6th in IL
To create a roster space for reliever Dan Kolb, the Pirates designated infielder Don Kelly for assignment. The team has 10 days to either trade him, release him, or send him to Indianapolis if he clears waivers.
Don’t forget to vote for the Indians to be named to the International League All-Star Team! Vote at : or
You may vote up to 25 times.
Go Tribe!

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Game #65 vs. Texas

PNC Park | 7:05 | Snell vs. Robinson Tejada | Box There’s something refreshing about beating a team into oblivion. Of course, that’s exactly what happened when Ian Snell and the Pirates faced off against the Texas Rangers on Wednesday evening. Snell hurled his first career complete game, and Jose Bautista instigated an offensive outburst that saw every member of the Pirates’ starting lineup reach base safely....

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The X-Factor

I’ll be the first to admit that a starting rotation featuring Ian Snell, Tom Gorzelanny and Oliver Perez would be downright scary this year. The trio has combined to throw 247 innings in 2007, allowing 81 earned runs while striking out 191 batters—good for a 2.95 ERA. By comparsion, Brandon Webb pitched 235 innings in 2006, setting down 178 while compiling a 3.10 ERA. Webb won the Cy Young. I’m sure if the...

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Knights Trample Indians in Six Innings

boxscore (Photos by NancyZ)
John Wasdin  -- photo by NancyZ
What did the best job of keeping the Charlotte Knights from scoring this afternoon? It was the rain. When it started raining in the middle of the 6th inning at Knights’ Stadium, the score was 13-2, and the Knights had scored in every inning but the first. Then they capped it off with an 8-run 5th inning.
“It was just one of those days”, said manager Trent Jewett after the game. “They’re hard to explain. Unfortunately, when you play 144 times, you’re going to have results like this every now and then. We’ve been on the positive end of a few 10-run games this year, so you have to take the good with the bad. We will enjoy a day off on Wednesday, and get back to work on Thursday.”
Indians’ starter John Wasdin took the loss for the Tribe, pitching 4.1 innings. He gave up 7 runs (all earned) on 11 hits. The bright spot was that he struck out 8 batters, including 3 strikeouts of Knights’ SS Tomas Perez. In fact, Tribe pitcher Juan Perez also struck out Tomas Perez once. Wasdin’s record is now 1-1, and his ERA ballooned to 8.31.
Wasdin had a little trouble in the first inning, but was able to get out of it. He hit 3B Jason Bourgeois with a pitch, and Bourgeois moved to second base on a wild pitch by Wasdin. He advanced to third base when CF Ryan Sweeney singled into right field. But Wasdin struck out DH Ernie Young and SS Tomas Perez to end the inning without a run scoring.
It was after that inning when the big trouble started. The Knights scored in three straight innings on home runs. They first got on the board in the bottom of the 2nd inning. 2B Kenny Perez singled into right field, and RF Kenny Kelly lifted a 3-1 pitch over the center field wall for a 2-run homer. Charlotte added two more in the 3rd inning, on another home run. 3B Jason Bourgeois grounded a double into left field, and CF Ryan Sweeney blasted one over the right field wall for another 2-run homer. In the 4th inning, Kenny Kelly led off the inning with his second home run of the game, this time to right field. This was a solo homer, and it made the score 5-0.

Yurendell de Caster -- photo by NancyZ
Knights’ knuckleball-throwing Charlie Haeger held the Indians to two hits over the first 4 innings. In the top of the 5th inning, with two out, C Einar Diaz reached first base on a fielding error by Knights’ 3B Jason Bourgeois. 2B Luis Ordaz walked, and SS Brian Bixler was hit by a pitch to load the bases. RF Yurendell de Caster (photo), owner of the highest batting average in the International League, lined a single into left field, to score Diaz and Ordaz. The rally ended quickly, though, as de Caster was thrown out trying to steal second base.
Charlotte came right back in a disastrous 5th inning — batting around, and chasing Tribe starter John Wasdin from the game. With one out, Wasdin gave up back-to-back singles to 1B Casey Rogowski and 2B Kenny Perez. That was the end of the day for him, as left-hander Juan Perez came in for relief. Juan Perez was greeted by another pair of back-to-back singles, to RF Kenny Kelly and C Gustavo Molina. Kelly’s single brought in Rogowski, making the score 6-2. LF Scott Podsednik smashed a grounder off Tribe 1B Brad Eldred’s glove and into right field, scoring Kenny Perez and Kenny Kelly. When Tribe RF Yurendell de Caster launched a wild throw back into the infield, Molina advanced to third base and Podsednik to second base. Molina scored on Jason Bourgeois’ single and Podsednik scored on Ryan Sweeney’s double. DH Ernie Young capped things off with a 3-run homer, the Knights’ fourth homer of the game. That gave the Knights 8 runs in the inning, and a 13-2 lead.
Trent Jewett complimented the Knights in earning a series split. “You have to give Charlotte credit because they won this series finale in pretty decisive fashion. They excelled in every phase of the game today. We, on the other hand, didn’t do too many things well. We spotted them five runs. Then, the wheels completely fell off the wagon in the fifth. It was a combination of clean hits, obvious errors, and some balls that could’ve been scored either way.”
Rain interrupted the game in the middle of the 6th inning. After a delay and consultation with weather radar, it was decided to declare the game finished. That gave Charlotte’s starter, Charlie Haeger the win, his 3rd of the year. The Tribe managed only three hits off Haeger, by Yurendell de Caster, Brad Eldred, and Luis Matos. Their two runs were unearned. Jason Bourgeois, Ryan Sweeney, and Kenny Kelly each had three hits for the Knights.
Indians’ hitting gem of the game: Yurendell de Caster’s two-RBI single in the top of the fifth inning. Trent Jewett couldn’t say enough about his team’s versatile player. “Yurendell is such an important piece to this puzzle because he can do so many things. It’s great to have Yurendell when you’re the one filling out the line-up card every day. He can play first base, second base, third base, left field or right field. Yurendell can hit almost anywhere in the line-up, and he can hit for both average and power. He’s been one of our most consistent performers over the past three years, and we’re looking forward to big things from him during the second half of this season.”
Indians’ defensive gem of the game: John Wasdin struck out 8 Charlotte batters in 4.1 innings of work. That’s 2/3 of the outs in the first four innings.
Dan Kolb -- photo by NancyZ
Roster moves:
Reliever Dan Kolb has been called up to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Kolb has appeared in 18 games for the Tribe, going 20 innings. He has given up 19 hits and 9 walks, with 16 strike outs. He has a 2-1 record with 4 saves, and a 3.18 ERA. Kolb spent three weeks last month on the DL because of a hamstring problem. Since returning, he has pitched in 5 games (5.2 innings) and given up 5 runs — 2 in one game and 3 in another game, and earned one win and one save.
Someone will have to be sent down to make room for Kolb, and someone will have to be removed from the 40-man roster to make room for him there too.
Since the Indians already had a roster position open prior to Kolb’s promotion, they reactivated RHP Mark Corey from the DL. Corey has been on the DL since May 17th. He has pitched in 4 games for the Indians, one start and 3 in relief, for a total of 8.1 innings. His ERA is 3.81, with no wins, losses, or saves.
There are still murmurs that Franquelis Osoria might be joining Kolb soon.
Injury reports:
Bryan Bullington’s shoulder discomfort is now being attributed to general arm fatigue. He is expected to miss one start.
Sean Burnett is still on the sidelines, but he threw yesterday on flat ground, and today from the bullpen mound. He might be able to return to the starting rotation by the end of the month.
Charlotte scored 8 runs in the 5th inning. The Indians’ previous record for number of runs allowed to an opponent in an inning was 6, against Richmond on April 22nd.
Go Tribe!

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Game #64 vs. Texas

PNC Park | 7:05 | Duke vs. Kevin Millwood | Box There’s no such thing as an easy win when you’re a fan of the Pirates, I’m afraid.   I was about to write that there’s no such thing as a laugher—but we all know that’s not the case. The Bucs jumped out to a 6-0 lead tonight and held on to win, 7-5.  Jose Bautista went 3 for 5 from the leadoff spot, doubling twice, homering once and stealing a base. ...

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