Curve Blast 6 In the 15th; 3 Doubles For Cunningham

Friday night game action in the Pirates’ lower minor leagues:

The West Virginia Power were rained out in Kannapolis tonight.  The Power and the Intimidators will play two on Saturday beginning at 6:05 pm.
The Power are expecting the Pirates’ first round pick from the 2010 draft, Jameson Taillon, to be joining the team this weekend.  He should be making his pro debut for the Power sometime early next week.  

Altoona Curve  11,  Richmond Flying Squirrels  5
(box)

The Curve broke a 5.5-inning-long 5-5 tie in the top of the 15th, to win this game in dramatic fashion.  They must have all been tired and ready to end it by then.  With one out, 1B Miles Durham singled and moved to second base on a balk.  LF Quincy Latimore also singled, and Durham scored the go-ahead run from second base.  But the Curve were not satisfied yet — 3B Jeremy Farrell singled, and DH Eric Fryer doubled, driving in Latimore.  After a strikeout, 1B Brock Holt walked to load the bases, and CF Starling Marte blasted a triple into right field, clearing the bases for 3 more runs.  The Richmond right fielder made a wild throw in, allowing Marte to score too, and the Curve had a 6-run inning.  All that remained was for Noah Krol to take the mound in the bottom of the inning and finish off the Squirrels with a ground out, a walk, and a double play.  

Richmond had the early lead in the game.  Curve starter Jared Hughes retired the first 6 batters he faced, but began the 3rd by giving up 4 singles with only one out, scoring one run.  A walk forced in the second run of the inning, and another single added two more, for a 4-0 lead.  A double and a single gave the Squirrels one more run in the 5th, and that was all for Hughes.  

The Curve had only one hit over the first 5 innings, and that was a double by Fryer to lead off the 3rd.  They also had two walks (Holt and Latimore) and C Tony Sanchez was hit by a pitch in those innings, though none of them came around to score.  They got two runs back in the top of the 6th.  Marte led off with a walk, and after two outs, Durham’s single brought in Marte.  Latimore doubled, plating Durham, and the Curve had cut the lead to 5-2.  

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2011 Prospect Watching: Taillon, Von Rosenberg And More

Continuing to work our way up the Pirates’ minor league pitching ranks… Zacharys today…

Jameson Taillon  —   R/R,  6′ 6″,  225 lb
Everyone knows about Taillon, the Pirates’ #1 draft pick in 2010.   Taillon, who is 19 years old, has a mid-to-high 90’s fastball and a hard curve, plus a slider and changeup that both need some work.  He signed at the deadline, so did not make his pro debut in 2010, though he did report to Fall Instrux and did fine there.  Taillon got into a minor league spring training game today, and pitched 2 innings, allowing a run on 3 hits with 2 strikeouts.  Just fine for his first time out.  Taillon should be ready for A level West Virginia to begin the 2011 season, though Pirates’ Kyle Stark has suggested that Taillon might remain in Bradenton for some extended spring training if it is “too cold” in West Virginia in early April.  

Zack Von Rosenberg —  R/R,  6′ 5″,  205 lb
Zack’s full name is Zachary, and he was born and attended high school in Zachary, Louisiana.  The Pirates picked Von Rosenberg in the 6th round of the 2009 draft.  He signed in time to make just one start, one inning, for the GCL Pirates that year (no hits, no walks, one strikeout).  He made 13 starts for the State College Spikes in 2010.  He struggled in his first four starts, allowing 12 earned runs in 16 innings for a 6.75 ERA.  He had only 4 strikeouts over the first three games, but struck out 4 more in the fourth game, going into July.  His next two starts were better, as he allowed only one run in each of two 5-inning starts, and struck out 4 and 5 batters respectively in those two games.  On July 20th, he had another tough outing, as he gave up 4 runs on 8 hits in 5 innings.  Von Rosenberg pulled it together for the rest of the season.  In his remaining 6 starts, he allowed 3 earned runs over 28 innings (0.96 ERA), and struck out 20 batters in those games.  The 20-year-old should start 2011 in West Virginia, where the Pirates would like to see more velocity develop on his fast ball (usually high 80’s to 90 or so), which could boost his strikeout rate.

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Two Homers By Harrison Aren’t Enough; Maggi Debuts

Early and late action for the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates:

Portland Sea Dogs� 9,� Altoona Curve� 8 (box)

Two home runs by 3B Josh Harrison and an early lead from a 5-run 2nd inning were washed away by the Sea Dogs’ 6-run 7th inning this afternoon.� Harrison, the second batter of the game, put the Curve onto the scoreboard minutes after the game began with his solo home run over the left field wall.� He added the second home run (his 3rd of the season) in the next inning.� That rally began with back-to-back walks by RF Miles Durham and C Kris Watts. CF Anthony Norman was hit by a pitch to load the bases for LF Jose De Los Santos. A line drive single by De Los Santos brought in Durham, then a wild pitch let Watts score.� 2B Chase d’Arnaud lifted a sacrifice fly, which plated Norman.� That left De Los Santos on base for Harrison, who blasted his second home run, also over the left field wall, for a 2-run homer, giving the Curve a 6-0 lead.

Bryan Morris began his afternoon’s work by allowing only a walk and a single over the first three innings.� In the 4th, he gave up a single just over the head of SS Jordy Mercer and into left field, then a home run on a rising line drive, cutting the Curve’s lead to 6-2.� Those were the only runs Morris allowed, on 3 hits and a walk, with 4 strikeouts in 5 innings.

Morris was relieved by Tom Boleska to begin the 6th.� Boleska gave up a solo homer, to 1B Anthony Rizzo, inching the Sea Dogs closer, 6-3.� But the real trouble came in the 7th, when Boleska could not retire any of the 4 batters he faced.� The first blasted a solo home run, then the next three all singled.� Derek Hankins replaced Boleska with the bases loaded and no outs.� He got one out on the infield fly rule, then got former Curve Ray Chang to strike out.� That brought Rizzo to the plate again — and he smashed a grand slam over the center field wall, and Portland had a 7-6 lead.� The grand slam was immediately followed by another solo home run, the third homer of the inning, for an 8-6 lead.� Five of those runs were charged to Boleska, and the other two to Hankins.

The Curve put one runner on base in each of the 4th through 7th innings, but could not get any of them around to score.� They rallied again in the 8th, starting with a single by 1B Matt� Hague and a double by Jordy Mercer, moving Hague to third base.� Miles Durham’s sacrifice fly brought in Hague, and Kris Watts’ double scored Mercer.� Norman was hit by a pitch and De Los Santos singled to deep short to load the bases.� But a grounder force out ended the inning with the Curve still one run short.� They went down in order in the 9th, and the Sea Dogs had the come-from-behind win.� Morris did not figure into the decision, but Boleska took the loss.

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Draft Pick Signings

The final list of the Pirates’ 2010 draft pick and which ones have signed.� As expected, first-round pick Jameson Taillon and second-round pick Stetson Alllie both signed on the final day, though they didn’t wait until the last possible second like what happened a couple of years ago.

A total of 27 signed out of 50, by my count.

(+ denotes draftees who have just graduated from high school)

1. RHP Jameson “Jamo” Taillon �+��� SIGNED 8/16

2. RHP Stetson Allie �+����� SIGNED� 8/16

3. CF Mel Rojas Jr. — SIGNED 7/15

4. RHP Nicholas Kingman +� –SIGNED� 8/9

5. RHP Tyler Waldron �– SIGNED �6/18

6. RHP Jason Hursch +

7. RHP Austin Kubitza +

8. RHP Dace Kime +

9. RHP Brandon Cumpton — SIGNED 8/9

10. RHP Zachary Weiss +

11. LF Daniel Grovatt — SIGNED 8/13

12. RHP Vincent Payne �– �SIGNED 6/18

13. LHP Christopher Kirsch +

14. RHP Bruce Weidman �– SIGNED 6/21

15. SS Andrew Maggi� — SIGNED 8/16

16. 1B Matthew Curry — SIGNED �7/2

17. RHP Ryan Hafner + — SIGNED 8/9

18. OF Chase Wentz

19. LHP Kent Emanuel +

20. OF Justin Bencsko — SIGNED �6/15

21. CF Dale Carey +

22. 2B Adalberto Santos �– SIGNED 6/20

23. 1B Jared Lakind +� –SIGNED 8/16

24. 1B Justin Howard — SIGNED 6/25

25. RHP Casey Sadler �– SIGNED 6/28

26. RHP Brandon Pierce +

27. RHP Kevin Kleis� – SIGNED 7/9

28. SS Zackary Powers +

29. RHP Garret Levsen +

30. C Matt Skirving — SIGNED 6/15

31. RHP Jason Townsend — SIGNED 6/28

32. IF Chase Lyles — SIGNED 6/15

33. LHP Justin Ennis — SIGNED 6/15

34. SS Kelson Brown — SIGNED 6/15

35. CF Andrew Muren

36. RHP James Archibald — SIGNED 6/28

37. C William Allen +

38. RHP Alex Cox +

39. RHP Kevin Decker — SIGNED 6/10

40. RHP Harrison Cooney +

41. RHP Bryton Trepagnier + �–SIGNED 7/5

42. LHP Stephen Lumpkins

43. RHP Garrett Hicks +

44. RHP Cory McGinnis

45. RHP Connor Sadzeck +

46. C Ryan Wiggins +

47. CF Nathan Sorenson +

48. LHP Dillon Haviland +

49. RHP Logan Pevny +� – SIGNED� 7/9

50. RHP Dusty Isaacs +

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Draft Days– The Whole List

Draft days…. we all know the results of Round One: �Jameson “Jamo” Taillon, a high school pitcher from Houston was the first selection, and second over-all pick, by the Piratres. �Check out more info on Taillon from Chuck Finder and Colin Dunlap of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette., �and another from a few days ago by Chuck Finder.

Taillon is a righty pitcher from The Woodlands High School, 6′ 6 1/2″ and 220 pounds. �He has lit up the radar at 98 mph, though usually is mid-to-high 90’s. �This season, Taillon has pitched 62.2 innings and earned a 8-1 record and a 1.79 ERA with 21 walks and 114 strikeouts. �That’s almost 2 strikeouts per inning. �He uses a fastball, curve, slider, and sometimes a change-up. �He has a scholarship to Rice University…. he’ll have to be lured away. � …. 7th round pick Austin Kubitza has also committed to Rice.

The second round pick, Stetson Allie, is another right-handed pitcher from the Cleveland area, where he attended St. Edward’s High School. �Allie is reported to have superior arm strength, and can also get into the upper 90’s, but he has not always been able to go deep into games.

Pick number three is outfielder�Mel Rojas Jr, son of former MLB pitcher Mel Rojas. � He comes from a junior college, Wabash Valley College, in Illinois.

So, here’s the entire list:

1. �RHP Jameson “Jamo” Taillon – The Woodlands HS, Houston, TX

2. �RHP Stetson Allie – St. Edwards HS, Cleveland, OH

3. CF Mel Rojas Jr – Wabash Valley College, Mt. Carmel, IL — J2

4. RHP Nicholas Kingman — Sierra Vista HS, Las Vegas, NV

5. RHP Tyler Waldron — Oregon State, �(California) �– �Jr

6. RHP Jason Hursch – Trinity Christian Acadamy (HS), TX

7. RHP Austin Kubitza — Heritage HS, TX

8. �RHP Dace Kime – Defiance Senior HS, Cleveland area, OH

9. RHP Brandon Cumpton — Georgia Tech — Jr

10. RHP Zachary Weiss – Northwood HS, CA

11. LF Daniel Grovatt — U Virginia — Jr

12. RHP Vincent Payne — Cypress College, CA — J1

13. �LHP Christopher Kirsch — Marple Newtown HS, PA

14. RHP Bruce Weidman — Southwestern Oregon CommColl �– J1

15. SS Andrew Maggi — Arizona State — So

16. 1B Matthew Curry – Texas Christian U — Sr

17. �RHP Ryan Hafner — Lee’s Summit West HS, MO

18. OF Chase Wentz – Louisiana St. U Shreveport — Jr

19. LHP Kent Emanuel – Woodstock HS, GA

20. OF Justin Bencsko – Villanova U — Sr

21. CF Dale Carey – Wheeler HS, GA

22. 2B Adalberto Santos – Oregon State — Sr

23. 1B Jared Lakind – Cypress Woods HS, TX

24. 1B Justin Howard – New Mexico — Sr

25. RHP Casey Sadler – Western Oklahoma State College — J2

26. RHP Brandon Pierce — Gunter HS, TX

27. RHP Kevin Kleis – Grossmont College — J1

28. SS Zackary Powers – Armwood HS, FL

29. RHP Garret Levsen – Sonora HS, CA

30. C Matthew Skirving – Eastern Michigan U — Jr

31. RHP Jason Townsend – U Alabama Tuscaloosa — Jr

32. IF Chase Lyles – Northwestern St. U — 5S

33. LHP Justin Ennis – Louisiana St. U Shreveport — Jr

34. SS Kelson Brown – Linfield College — Sr

35. CF Andrew Muren – Cal State Northridge — Jr

36. RHP James Archibald – McLennan Comm Coll — J1

37. C William Allen – Buchholz HS, FL

38. RHP Alex Cox – Santiago HS, CA

39. RHP Kevin Decker – Coll of Charleston — Sr

40. RHP Harrison Cooney – Vero Beach Senior HS, FL

41. RHP Bryton Trepagnier — East St. John HS, LA

42. LHP Stephen Lumpkins – American U — SO

43. RHP Garrett Hicks – Yucaipa HS, CA

44. RHP Cory McGinnis – Shelton State Coll — J1

45. RHP Connor Sadzeck – Crystal Lake Central HS, IL

46. C Ryan Wiggins – West Seattle HS, WA

47. CF Nathan Sorenson – Texas HS, TX

48. LHP Dillon Haviland – South Fayette HS, PA

49. RHP Logan Pevny – West Milford HS, NJ

50. RHP Dusty Isaacs – �Lebanon HS, OH

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