Tag: Ramon Aguero

Tribe Come Within Inches Again

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Pitching coach Tom Filer, catcher Wyatt Toregas, and pitcher Justin Wilson









Columbus Clippers  8,  Indianapolis Indians  7
(box score)

For the third night in a row, the Indians were down by one run in the bottom of the last inning with at least one runner on base -- and couldn't capitalize.  In addition, it was Pedro Ciriaco who was the last man to bat in each game.  That's not to place the blame for the losses on Ciriaco -- other players had also had opportunities to drive in runs and were not able too.  It's just an odd coincidence that Ciriaco ended the three games with a grounder into a double play, a ground out, and tonight a pop out.  

IMG_5009Like in the first two games, the Clippers were first onto the scoreboard.  Indians' starter Justin Wilson (photo) retired the first 8 batters he faced, including 5 strikeouts, with 4 of those in a row.  He struck out the side in the 2nd inning, then struck out the first batter of the 3rd inning.  Like the first two games, this game featured a diving catch of a low line drive by the Indians' shortstop.  In the first two games, that shortstop was Ciriaco; tonight it was Chase d'Arnaud, who recorded the second out in the 3rd inning.  The Clipper's ninth batter, RF Jerad Head, then rocketed Wilson's 2-1 pitch over the wall in right-center field for a solo homer.  Wilson then walked the next batter, CF Ezequiel Carrera, who promptly stole second base on the first pitch to the SS Cord Phelps.  Phelps slipped a grounder up the middle, just out of reach of d'Arnaud, and Carrera came around to score from second.  A walk to 3B Lonnie Chisenhall prompted a visit by pitching coach Tom Filer (photo above).  After catching his breath, Wilson got a fly out to end the inning.
 
Wilson also had to work around base runners in the 4th inning.  After another strikeout, Wilson gave up an infield single to 1B Jordan Brown.  Brown grounded back to the mound, and the ball tipped off Wilson's glove and over towards short.  SS d'Arnaud had to change his direction, but he got to the ball and made a rushed throw to first.  The throw pulled 1B Matt Hague off base, though it appeared that Brown might have beat the ball to the bag anyway.  DH Wes Hodges also tapped back to the mound, where Wilson whirled and threw to second, forcing out Brown.  But 2B Brian Friday's throw on to first went wide, and Hodges was safe.  C Paul Phillip walked, but then Head grounded to short, and the inning ended on the force out at second base.  

2011 Prospect Watching: Cox, Hughes, Krol, And Moreno

Less than 24 hours until the Pirates begin 2011, and just a week until the minor leagues begin their season... and a few more pitchers to look at:

Tyler Cox  --  Bats Right/ Throws Left;  6' 3",  200 lb
Cox was the Pirates' 35th round pick in the 2008 draft.  He pitched well for the GCL Pirates that year, but struggled at West Virginia to begin 2009.  He was moved to State College, and had better results: an 8-3 record and a 3.93 ERA in 10 starts and 5 relief appearances.  The relief appearances seemed to be a good idea, and in 2010, Cox was moved to the bullpen and pitched exclusively in relief.  It seemed to agree with him, as he earned a 6-2 record and one save, and an overall 3.32 ERA in 62.1 innings.  Cox did not allow a run in his first 3 outings (6.2 innings), and he gave up only 2 runs and 8 hits in the month of April, for a 1.35 ERA in 13.1 innings.  He struggled in May, though, allowing 12 runs and 15 hits in 12.1 innings (8 appearances), for an 8.76 ERA.  But when the calendar turned to June, Cox turned over a new page too -- he gave up 2 runs on 5 hits over 12.2 innings for a 1.42 ERA.  In July it was more of the same:  2 runs on 8 hits in 12 innings, and a 1.50 ERA.  Cox had a streak of 14 consecutive appearances over June and July in which he did not allow any runs at all, not even unearned runs.  The season ended with 4 runs on 11 hits in 12 innings over August and September, which boosted his ERA a little bit.  Cox also bumped up his strikeout rate with the move to the bullpen -- 70 strikeouts (10.1 K/ 9 innings), though his walks were a little high too (33, 4.8 walks/ 9 innings) when his control got shaky.  Cox will turn 25 in a few weeks.  He should be ready to move to AA Altoona for 2011.


Diego Moreno  --  R/R,  6' 1",   177 lb
Moreno is a 24-year-old Venezuelan, who has played only two seasons in the US.  He pitched very effectively in two games in State College and 18 games in West Virginia in 2009, for a combined 1-3 record and 5 saves, with a 2.60 ERA in 50 innings.  He was assigned to Bradenton to begin the 2010 season, and had great success against the Florida State League.  He allowed one run in April, on 5 hits and one walk, in 13 innings, for a 0.69 ERA.  He also struck out 19 batters in the month, including one outing on April 26th when he struck out 7 batters in 3 hitless and scoreless innings.  He buzzed through May also, and didn't get his ERA above 1.00 until his last game with the Marauders on May 22nd, when he allowed 2 runs on 2 hits (one was a home run).  He gave up 3 runs total in May, on 6 hits in 13.1 innings, and finished his time in Bradenton with a 1.37 ERA in 26.1 innings.  He'd walked two batters and struck out 39.  Moreno was promoted to Altoona, and made his first AA appearance on May 24th (one hit and two strikeouts in one inning) -- then went onto the DL with a shoulder strain.  When he returned, Moreno made another 6 appearances for Altoona.  He gave up 6 runs in that time, but 5 came in one game.  His totals in Altoona, in 7 games were 6 runs on 10 hits in 7.2 innings and a 7.04 ERA.  At that point, Moreno had an unfortunate incident with the Altoona staff, and was first suspended, then demoted to Bradenton.  He made another 12 relief appearances for the Marauders, allowing 2 runs on 3 hits over 12 innings for a 1.50 ERA, and 18 strikeouts.  Moreno should have another chance in Altoona to begin 2011.  

Really Last Minute Roster Moves

This is the time of year when teams release players from their minor league camps - those who are not going to fit into the organization's plans.  The Pirates have released these players:

Inf Adenson Chourio  --  West Virginia and Bradenton in 2010
Inf Christian Colonel -- he'd just been signed at the beginning of the month 
RHP Casey Erickson  --  Bradenton in 2010
C/ OF/ 3B Pat Irvine  --  State College and West Virginia in 2010
1B Gerlis Rodriguez  --  State College in 2010
LHP Mike Williams  --   West Virginia in 2010
2B Jose Solano (Luis?)  -- GCL Pirates in 2010

P Ramon Aguero has been designated for assignment, coming off the Pirates' 40-man roster to make room for P Jose Veras.  If he makes it through waivers, he could go to Altoona or Indianapolis.   

RHP Tim Wood is also getting close to signing with the Pirates.  He was the Marlins' 44th round draft pick in 2002, and worked his way up through there system, reaching the majors in June 2009.  he made 18 relief appearances in that season, for a total of 22.1 innings, with 7 runs on 22 hits, for a 2.82 ERA.  He split last season between AAA New Orleans and the major league team.  He began the season with the Marlins, then spent parts of May and June and the end of July with New Orleans.  Wood pitched in 26 games for the Marlins, and earned an 0-1 record with 8 saves.  In a total of 27 innings, he gave up 33 hits and 17 runs, for a 5.53 ERA.  In New Orleans, he made 14 relief appearances, going 0-1 with 5 saves, and allowing 10 runs on 19 hits in 14 innings (6.43 ERA).  He did not pitch after the end of July, and was granted free agency in November. Wood was signed by the Nationals six days later, but was released in spring training.  
*UPDATE* -- Wood signed a minor league contract with the Pirates.  That could mean Indianapolis for him. 

Indians Shut Out, Nieve Released

Iron Pigs  3,  Indians  0
The Indians' pitching staff threw 7 solid shut-out innings, but the Iron Pigs rallied for 3 runs in the 8th to take the win.  An RBI double, an Indians' error, and a sacrifice fly brought in Lehigh Valley's runs.  Starter Jeff Karstens pitched 4 scoreless innings, scattering 2 hits, no walks, and struck out 4.  Tony Watson followed with 2 scoreless innings, and Ramon Aguero pitched one scoreless frame.  The Tribe posted 5 hits over the first 4 innings, but could not push a run across.  Three Iron Pigs relievers finished the game, and allowed just one hit among the three of them.  

The Pirates had the day off today, and the Indians have the day off on Wednesday.

The Pirates have released pitcher Fernando Nieve.  Nieve had just been reassigned from the big league camp to the minor league camp just yesterday. 

Indians Top Yankees; Pirates’ Top Red Sox

Indianapolis Indians  7,  Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees  2
The Indians had both the pitching and the hitting tuned up this afternoon as they defeated the Yankees at Bradenton.   SS Jordy Mercer, 2B Josh Harrison, and C Eric Fryer each drove in two runs.   The scoring started when Harrison tripled in the 3rd inning, when 3 runs came in. Mercer blasted a solo homer, then Fryer's 2-run double was the gem of the 8th inning, as 3 more runs scored.  Starter Justin Wilson pitched 3 scoreless innings, with 4 strikeouts, to earn the win.  The Yankees scored their 2 runs in the 5th, with reliever Jared Hughes on the mound.  Hughes pitched 2 innings and also struck out 3 batters.  Tony Watson pitched 2 scoreless innings (3 K), and Anthony Claggett (2 K) and Ramon Aguero each pitched a scoreless frame.  

Pirates  7,  Red Sox  5
A 5-run 4th inning put the Pirates well on their way to a win this afternoon at Bradenton.  The rally began when 2B Neil Walker reached base on a fielding error and CF Andrew McCutchen walked.   1B Lyle Overbay lifted a double into left field, which brought in both Walker and McCutchen.  3B Pedro Alvarez grounded to third, where Overbay was out, leaving Alvarez on first.  RF Matt Diaz lined a single up the middle, and C Dusty Brown loaded the bases on an infield grounder that bounced off Red Sox pitcher Josh Beckett.  With two outs, Pirates' starter Kevin Correia slipped a grounder into left field, driving in Alvarez and Diaz.   When the throw in to the plate was not in time to get Diaz, the Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia tried to throw back to third to surprise Brown.  The real surprise was when Saltalamacchia's throw sailed into left field, allowing Brown to score and Correia to move up to third.  LF John Bowker gave the Pirates 2 more insurance runs with a homer in the 7th inning.  Correia also singled in the 3rd inning but was out in a force play at second.

2B Pedro Ciriaco doubled after Bowker's homer in the 7th.   CF Corey Wimberly, RF Josh Fields, and SS Josh Rodriguez got into the game.  Steve Pearce played a few innings at third base as well.

Correia pitched 5 innings in his start.  He gave up two singles in the top of the 1st and one in the 2nd, but double plays got him out of both innings.  He zipped through the 3rd and 4th innings, then gave up 3 runs in the 5th.  A walk, a single, and a sacrifice fly brought in the first run.  Two more singles added a second run, then a throwing error by Walker at second and a sacrifice fly added an unearned run.  Joel Hanrahan pitched a scoreless 6th, with 2 strikeouts.  Then Justin Thomas allowed a run to score in the 7th on a run, a double, and a wild pitch.  Fernando Nieve pitched the final two innings and earned the save even though he gave up a run on a double, a walk, and a single in the 9th.  

Two More Rounds Of Reassignments, Plus Game Notes

Catching up after being away for a few days...

On Saturday, the Pirates sent four pitchers to minor league camp:
RHP Bryan Morris and RHP Kyle McPherson, both on the 40-man roster, were optioned down, with Morris going to AAA Indianapolis and McPherson going to A+ Bradenton.   
Two lefties, Rudy Owens and Justin Wilson, were also sent to the minor league camp, and though their exact level is still not official, both should begin the season with the Indy Indians.  

More moves were made today:
From the 40-man roster--
LHP Jeff Locke, LHP Aaron Thompson, and RHP Ramon Aguero were optioned to AA Altoona 
LHP Daniel Moskos and LHP Tony Watson were optioned to Indianapolis
Outfielders Gorkys Hernandez and Alex Presley were optioned to Indianapolis
Moskos and Presley both spent part of 2010 with Indianapolis, while Watson and Hernandez will make their debut at the AAA level.  Locke, Aguero, and Thompson all spent part of 2010 with Altoona.

Not on the 40-man yet --
Infielders Chase d'Arnaud and Brian Friday and outfielder Andrew Lambo were reassigned to minor league camp.  Friday played in Indianapolis for most of 2010 and should return there.  D'Arnaud and Lambo were in Altoona for 2010;  Lambo is ready for AAA, though d'Arnaud may be asked to go back to Altoona for part of 2011.  


Pirates Shut Out Yankees

Pirates  2,  Yankees  0

Six Pirate pitchers combined to shut out the Yankees at McKechnie Field this afternoon.  James McDonald and Aaron Thompson each pitched 2 scoreless innings, and each allowed 2 hits.  That was all the hits the Yankees could get.  Daniel McCutchen pitched 2 innings, retiring 6 batters in order, including 2 strikeouts.  Chris Resop, Ramon Aguero, and Daniel Moskos  all contributed one scoreless and hitless inning, and Moskos earned the save.  

The Pirates posted just 6 hits.  Two of those belonged to C Chris Snyder.  He singled to lead off the 3rd inning, but was caught trying to steal second base, then singled again to begin the 6th, and was replaced by pinch runner Jeremy Farrell.  2B Josh Rodriguez bunted Farrell to second base, and SS Pedro Ciriaco drove in the first run of the game with an RB double into left field.  The Pirates scored again in the 7th, when DH Garrett Jones opened the frame with a walk.  1B Steve Pearce bounced a ground-rule double over the left field wall, moving Jones to third base.  3B Josh Fields brought in Jones with a sacrifice fly.  

CF Alex Presley walked, singled, and was hit by a pitch in the game.  LF John Bowker also singled.  Also getting in the game:  CF Gorkys Hernandez, LF Miles Durham, RF Andrew Lambo, 1B Garrett Atkins, RF Matt Diaz, C Wyatt Toregas, 2B Brian Friday, and SS Corey Wimberly.  Doug Bernier, who played for the Indy Indians in 2010, got into the game for the Yankees.   




Other notes:
The Pirates have signed 3B Christian Colonel to a minor league contract.  Colonel was the Rockies' 5th round draft pick in 2003.  He has played all around the field, he has spent more time in the infield, and most of those at third base.  More about Colonel to come in the next few days.
Former Pirate farmhand C James Skelton (Bradenton 2010) signed with the Brewers.  



 

Curve and Marauders Both Fall To Big Innings

Harrisburg Senators� 10,� Altoona Curve� 5 ....������ (box)

Two 5-run innings gave the Senators the advantage over the Curve in the first game of their Eastern League playoff series.

The Curve jumped out to the early lead in the bottom of the 1st.� 2B Chase d'Arnaud led off with a walk, and 3B Josh Harrison followed by blasting a home run over the left-center field wall, to give the Curve a 2-0 lead before they even had recorded an out.� Two outs later, LF Andrew Lambo reached base on a fielding error by the Senators' 2B Steve Lombardozzi.� C Hector Gimenez worked a walk, and RF Miles Durham singled into left field to bring in Lambo from second base, and the Curve had a 3-0 lead.

It didn't last long, as the Senators sent 10 batters to the plate and scored 5 runs in the top of the 2nd.� Curve starter Rudy Owens had worked around a walk to Lombardozzi in the 1st inning, but got into trouble quickly in the 2nd.� A walk and a single began the inning, then a grounder to the diving 1B Matt Hague produced a force out at second base.� A double into right-center field brought in both base runners, and the Senators had made it a one-run game, 3-2.� A bunt attempt by the Senators' pitcher, Tom Milone, went right to Owens on the mound, and he turned it into a fielder's choice out at third, leaving Milone on first base.� But Lombardozzi walked again, then a single loaded the bases.� Owens had two outs with those bases loaded, and he got an 0-2 on the next batter -- and another single drove in two more runs, and the Senators had the lead.� That sent Owens to the showers after just 1.2 innings.� Jared Hughes came out of the bullpen, and he loaded the bases again by walking the first batter he faced.� A passed ball by Gimenez allowed the runner in from third base (unearned run, charged to Owens), and when a ground out ended the inning, the Senators had a 5-3 lead.

Milone had the Curve bats under control for the next 6 innings.� D'Arnaud doubled in the 2nd inning, but was left on base when three other Curve batters struck out.� Hughes reached base in the 4th on a fielding error, but was also left stranded. � Durham singled in the 6th, but was also left on base.� Harrisburg's reliever Hassan Pena pitched the 7th inning, and he also retired the Curve in order.

Hughes did even better than Milone over his next 3 innings -- he retired those 9 Harrisburg batters in order.� Bryan Morris was next out of the bullpen.� He retired the side in order in the 6th, and worked his way out of a jam in the 7th.� That inning began with a single, then Lombardozzi reached on fielding error, when his grounder bounced off 3B Harrison's glove.� With two on and none out (instead of one on and one out), Morris got a strikeout.� Another single loaded the bases, then Morris ended the inning with a three-pitch strikeout and a blazing line drive that went straight to Harrison's glove.

Mike Dubee took the mound for the Curve to begin the 8th inning, and he found trouble quickly.� Back-to-back singles opened the inning, then Dubee got a strikeout.� An RBI single followed, then Lombardozzi drove a liner down the right field line and into the bullpen, plating the second run of the inning.� An intentional walk loaded the bases, and a grounder to third yielded a force out at third, but Harrison's throw to first rolled away from 1B Hague, and instead of an inning-ending double play, two more runs scored and the inning continued.� Another single dropped in, in short left field, to drive in the fifth run of the inning.� Craig Hansen relieved Dubee, and he got the pitcher Pena to fly out to end the inning.

Marauders Clinch Playoff Spot

On Friday night, all of the Pirates' minor league affiliates lost.� On Saturday night, all but State College won....

Bradenton Marauders� 4,� Charlotte Stone Crabs� 2 ...���� (box)

The Marauders assured themselves at least a spot in the playoffs with this win tonight.� Nate Adcock won his 11th game of the season with 2 runs allowed in 5.2 innings of work.� He gave up a run in the bottom of the 1st, with a 2-out walk, a wild pitch, and two singles.� He surrendered another run on a walk and a double to lead off the 3rd inning.� He scattered 4 more hits, but left two stranded and erased two with double plays.� In the top of the 6th, Adcock got two outs and gave up a single, then that runner stole both second and third base.� He was relieved by Kyle McPherson, who finished that inning with a strikeout, then gave up just one hit over the next 2 innings, including 3 more strikeouts.� Noah Krol earned his league-leading 34th save of the season with a scoreless 9th inning, working around a missed catch error.

Bradenton picked up one run in the 2nd inning, when C Eric Fryer singled, then moved to second base on a groundout.� 3B Adam Davis' RBI single brought in Fryer.� The Marauders were on the receiving end of several walks over the next few innings -- one in the 3rd to SS Shelby Ford, one in the 4th to Fryer, three in the 5th to DH Jordan Newton, 2B James Skelton, and RF Robbie Grossman to load the bases -- but all were left on base.� They did score again in the 6th, when LF Quincy Latimore led off with a single.� He was forced out at second on Fryer's grounder, leaving Fryer at first.� Davis singled again, advancing Fryer to third bse, then Newton doubled in both Fryer and Davis, to take a 3-2 lead.� They added an insurance run in the 4th.� Grossman singled with one out, then scored on CF Starling Marte's double.� The Marauders threatened again in the 8th, as Davis was hit by a pitch and Newton walked, then Skelton bunted them both into scoring position.� A strikeout and a ground out ended the inning, but it turned out to not matter, and the Marauders season is going to continue beyond the weekend.

Irwin: Another 7 No-Hit Innings;

Thursday's action for the Pirates' lower minor league affiliates:

West Virginia Power� 3,� Rome Braves� 0 ...��� (box)

On July 24th, Power starter Phillip Irwin pitched 7 hitless and scoreless innings.� Tonight, he again threw 7 scoreless innings, though this time he scattered 3 hits.� Last time, he walked two batters, and tonight he did not walk any.� Both times, Irwin struck out 8 opponents.� Irwin's toughest inning tonight was the 4th, when he gave up a double and a single, and hit a batter.� Luckily, the first runner was doubled off second base in a line-out double play.� The other two runners pulled off a double steal, but a strikeout ended the inning with them both still in scoring position.� Irwin retired the next 9 batters in order to finish his evening and earn his 6th win.� Zach Foster earned his 6th save with two scoreless innings of relief, allowing only a walk.

The Power were held to just 5 hits, but they also took advantage of three Rome errors in one inning.� In the 2nd, 1B Aaron Baker began the inning by reaching base on a fielding error.� He moved to second base on a passed ball, but was out at third when RF Andy Vasquez reached on a fielder's choice.� Vasquez stole second base, and scored on LF Rogelios Noris' RBI single.� Noris advanced to third base when the Rome pitcher made a throwing error on a pick-off attempt, then scored on C Jairo Marquez's double, which was also complicated by a fielding error.� Marquez added another run in the 5th, with a solo home run, his second of the season.� Vasquez singled in the 4th inning, but was thrown out trying to steal second base.� SS Benji Gonzalez doubled to lead off the 8th inning, but was left stranded.

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