Game #105 Preview – Dash vs. Wilmington

Game #105 – Home Game #54
Winston-Salem Dash (21-12, 51-52) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (14-19, 52-51)
Thursday, July 30 – 7 p.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Winston-Salem swept a doubleheader against Wilmington on Wednesday, and thus bids for a series brooming Thursday against the Blue Rocks.

Brian Clark went a career-high 6.1 innings in the second game of Wednesday's twin bill. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Brian Clark went a career-high 6.1 innings in the second game of Wednesday’s twin bill. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – DH
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Jeremy Dowdy – C
Nolan Earley – RF
Cleuluis Rondon – SS
Brandon Brennan – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • After starting the season 2-6 in doubleheader contests, the Dash have swept back-to-back twin bills, both coming against Wilmington. For the third time this season, the Dash have strung together a four-game home win streak. Winston has not had a longer home surge since a six-game run from June 7-20, 2014. Overall, the Dash have won four straight since Saturday, one shy of a high-water mark for this season.
  • The Dash dropped their overall team earned run average to 3.29, which is third in the CL. (Myrtle Beach, 3.12; Wilmington, 3.23). At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is more than a full run lower (2.53). The Dash’s bullpen has only permitted 21 earned runs in 96.1 innings in the second half (1.96 ERA). Brad Goldberg and Euclides Leyer earned a save Wednesday, meaning the Dash has cashed in on 19 of its last 20 chances.
  • After a dominant Dash debut last Thursday, right-hander Carson Fulmer did give up three runs in a two-inning effort in Wednesday’s doubleheader. Fulmer permitted a pair of homers, Humberto Arteaga in the first and Alfredo Escalera in the second. For the second consecutive outing, he punched out three. Fulmer went 24-3 with a 1.99 ERA in his three-year career at Vanderbilt, with whom he won a National Championship in 2014.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 35 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. The club’s current first-place streak matches the third-longest since Winston-Salem became the Dash in 2009.
  • With three stolen bases Wednesday, Winston-Salem outfielder Adam Engel passed teammate Eddy Alvarez and seized sole possession of fourth place in the Minor Leagues in stolen bases (46). Alvarez’s 45 steals, 42 of which came with Low-A Kannapolis, are good for a share of fifth place. In all, the White Sox have four of the top 20 base stealers in the Minors in 2015. Birmingham’s Tim Anderson (36, 13th) and Keenyn Walker (31, T-19th) join the Dash duo.
  • Dash slugger Keon Barnum has shined during the month of July. He has posted a .280 batting average, his second-best mark during a month in his two-year Dash career (.333 in 26 games last June). Barnum has also posted a career-best 22 RBIs this month. He trails only High Desert’s Lewis Brinson (23) among High-A hitters in RBIs. Plus, Barnum is still short two RBIs from a suspended game on July 13. Those will be added to his line when the game is completed on August 11.
  • With a victory Thursday, the Dash would corral their third sweep of the year. Both of Winston-Salem’s sweeps have taken place in the second half.
  • Following this contest, the Dash will battle Lynchburg at home. The weekend set marks the last regular season set between the two clubs.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Thursday’s game will be broadcast live on 600 AM-WSJS and wsjs.com, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 6:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 7 p.m.

– Scott

Games #103/104 Preview – Dash vs. Wilmington

UPDATE – 1:40 p.m.:

Dash game two lineup:

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – SS
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Omar Narvaez – C
T.J. Williams – DH
Nolan Earley – RF
Brian Clark – LHP

Games #103/104 – Home Games #52/53
Winston-Salem Dash (19-12, 49-52) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (14-17, 52-49)
Wednesday, July 29 – 11 a.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Tuesday’s series opener between the Dash and Blue Rocks was postponed due to unplayable field conditions and incoming inclement weather. Thus, Winston-Salem and Wilmington will play a doubleheader beginning at 11 a.m. Wednesday.

Carson Fulmer makes his second High-A start in game one of Wednesday's doubleheader. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Carson Fulmer makes his second High-A start in game one of Wednesday’s doubleheader. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP (Game 1):

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – 2B
Jake Peter – DH
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Jeremy Dowdy – C
Nolan Earley – RF
Cleuluis Rondon – SS
Carson Fulmer – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • The Dash dropped their overall team earned run average to 3.29, which is third in the Carolina League. (Myrtle Beach, 3.12; Wilmington, 3.23). At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is more than a full run lower (2.52). While the rotation has been on a week-long surge, the bullpen has been electric since the start of the half. Dash relievers have only permitted 20 earned runs in 90.2 innings in the second half (1.99 ERA). Thanks to Euclides Leyer’s successful save conversion on Monday, Winston-Salem has cashed in on 17 of its last 18 chances.
  • The Dash boast two of the top six base stealers in the Minors. Between Low-A Kannapolis (42) and Winston (3), Eddy Alvarez has amassed 45 swipes, which are good for a share of fourth place. Adam Engel’s 43 stolen bases are sixth-best, and they lead all active Carolina Leaguers by at least 18 (Carolina’s Connor Lien, 27).
  • Right-hander Carson Fulmer, the White Sox first-round pick last month, will make his second High-A start and third professional outing in Tuesday’s opener against Wilmington. Fulmer blanked the Mudcats over two innings in his Dash debut Thursday. His Minor League debut came on July 18 with the AZL White Sox. The eighth-overall pick in the MLB Draft this year, Fulmer posted a 24-3 record and a 1.99 earned run in his three-year career at Vanderbilt.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 34 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • The Dash will square off with Wilmington for the first time in the second half. The Blue Rocks, who won the Northern Division’s first half title, went 6-5 against the Dash prior to the All-Star break, though Winston-Salem seized a three-out-of-four take from the Blue Crew in the lone series between the two clubs at BB&T Ballpark. Winston-Salem’s offense has labored in the season series to the tune of a .226 team average and 2.2 runs per contest. Dash hurlers have recorded a 2.79 ERA against Wilmington.
  • Wilmington starter Luis Rico is the fifth straight left-hander that Winston-Salem has faced. The Dash have won three of their last four games after starting 11-11 against southpaw starters.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Wednesday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 10:45 a.m., with the first pitch at approximately 11 a.m.

– Scott

Game #103 Preview – Dash vs. Wilmington

Game #103 – Home Game #52
Winston-Salem Dash (19-12, 49-52) vs. Wilmington Blue Rocks (14-17, 52-49)
Tuesday, July 28 – 7 p.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Strong pitching led the Dash to a 3-1 victory and road series win Monday in Frederick. Tuesday’s contest against Wilmington is the first of a six-game homestand.

Jefferson Olacio struck out the side in the eighth inning of Monday's contest. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Jefferson Olacio struck out the side in the eighth inning of Monday’s contest. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – 2B
Jake Peter – DH
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Jeremy Dowdy – C
Nolan Earley – RF
Cleuluis Rondon – SS
Carson Fulmer – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Since posting his shortest professional start on July 17 at Carolina, Jordan Guerrero has given up just three runs and whiffed 14 over two starts spanning 13 innings. In the last six contests, Dash starters have given up two runs or less. During this spurt, the Dash’s rotation boasts a 1.80 ERA (7 earned runs in 35.0 innings). This stat includes both of Guerrero’s recent gems.
  • The Dash dropped their overall team earned run average to 3.29, which is third in the Carolina League. (Myrtle Beach, 3.12; Wilmington, 3.23). At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is more than a full run lower (2.52). While the rotation has been on a week-long surge, the bullpen has been electric since the start of the half. Dash relievers have only permitted 20 earned runs in 90.2 innings in the second half (1.99 ERA). Thanks to Euclides Leyer’s successful save conversion on Monday, Winston-Salem has cashed in on 17 of its last 18 chances.
  • The Dash boast two of the top six base stealers in the Minors. Between Low-A Kannapolis (42) and Winston (3), Eddy Alvarez has amassed 45 swipes, which are good for a share of fourth place. Adam Engel’s 43 stolen bases are sixth-best, and they lead all active Carolina Leaguers by at least 18 (Carolina’s Connor Lien, 27).
  • Right-hander Carson Fulmer, the White Sox first-round pick last month, will make his second High-A start and third professional outing in Tuesday’s opener against Wilmington. Fulmer blanked the Mudcats over two innings in his Dash debut Thursday. His Minor League debut came on July 18 with the AZL White Sox. The eighth-overall pick in the MLB Draft this year, Fulmer posted a 24-3 record and a 1.99 earned run in his three-year career at Vanderbilt.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 33 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • The Dash will square off with Wilmington for the first time in the second half. The Blue Rocks, who won the Northern Division’s first half title, went 6-5 against the Dash prior to the All-Star break, though Winston-Salem seized a three-out-of-four take from the Blue Crew in the lone series between the two clubs at BB&T Ballpark. Winston-Salem’s offense has labored in the season series to the tune of a .226 team average and 2.2 runs per contest. Dash hurlers have recorded a 2.79 ERA against Wilmington.
  • Wilmington starter Luis Rico is the fifth straight left-hander that Winston-Salem has faced. The Dash have won three of their last four games after starting 11-11 against southpaw starters.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Tuesday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 6:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 7 p.m.

– Scott

Game #102 Preview – Dash at Frederick

Game #102 – Road Game #51
Winston-Salem Dash (18-12, 48-52) at Frederick Keys (17-14, 49-52)
Monday, July 27 – 2 p.m.
NYMEO Field at Harry Grove Stadium (Frederick, Md.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

James Dykstra gave the Dash seven strong innings in Sunday’s 6-4 Winston victory. Monday’s contest will be the rubber game of a three-game set between Wisnton-Salem and Frederick.

James Dykstra went seven innings Sunday, allowing just two runs, to earn his first win since April 22. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

James Dykstra went seven innings Sunday, allowing just two runs, to earn his first win since April 22. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Omar Narvaez – C
T.J. Williams – DH
Cleuluis Rondon – SS
Nolan Earley – RF
Jordan Guerrero – LHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Not only had Dykstra waited more than three months for the win he collected on Sunday, but he had endured a nine-game personal losing streak. Entering this season, Dykstra’s longest skid was just three games. To finally end the slide, Dykstra matched season-highs in innings (7.0) and strikeouts (eight). In the process, the righty continued an impressive run by Winston-Salem starters, who have given up two runs or less in each of the last five games. During this spurt, the Dash’s rotation boasts a 1.93 ERA (six earned runs in 28.0 innings).
  • Winston-Salem boasts a 3.31 team earned run average, which is third-best in the CL (Myrtle Beach, 3.12; Wilmington, 3.19). At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is more than a full run lower (2.58). If the season ended today, Winston’s overall ERA would be the best in the Dash era.
  • In particular, Winston-Salem’s bullpen has been tremendous since the start of half two. Dash relievers have only permitted 20 earned runs in 88.2 innings in the second half (2.03 ERA). Thanks to Brad Goldberg’s successful save conversion on Sunday, Winston has cashed in on 16 of its last 17 chances. The Dash lost their save leader Saturday with the promotion of righty Peter Tago, who struck out four in two innings for a save in his Double-A debut on Sunday.
  • Thanks to a recent promotion, Winston-Salem boasts two of the six bast base stealers in the Minors. Infielder Eddy Alvarez, who joined the Dash on Wednesday, ripped off 42 stolen bases for Low-A Kannapolis. He has three thieveries in his first five games at the High-A level. His 45 swipes are tied for fourth-best in the Minor Leagues, while Adam Engel places sixth with 43. No other active player in the Carolina League is within 16 of Engel, who has swiped nine in his last eight games. Also, Jake Peter owns a share of eighth in the CL. Alvarez, Engel and Peter all stole at least one base on Sunday.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 32 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • First baseman Keon Barnum continued his hot stretch with two more RBIs in Sunday’s win. This month, Barnum is hitting .267 (24-for-90) with 19 RBIs, which are tied for fifth in all of High-A baseball. The Tampa, Fla., native is tied with former Myrtle Beach slugger Jacob Rogers for the most RBIs in the CL during this span, which has encompassed 24 games. Overall, Barnum is tied for ninth on the circuit with 42 RBIs.
  • Following Monday’s finale in Frederick, the Dash return to BB&T Ballpark for six games…The first-half Northern Division champion Wilmington Blue Rocks visit the Triad for the second and final time this year before Lynchburg comes calling for the last meeting between the two teams this season.
  • White Sox first-round pick Carson Fulmer is slated to make his second High-A and third Minor League start on Tuesday.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Monday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 1:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 2 p.m.

– Scott

Game #101 Preview – Dash at Frederick

Game #101 – Road Game #50
Winston-Salem Dash (17-12, 47-52) at Frederick Keys (17-13, 49-51)
Sunday, July 26 – 4 p.m.
NYMEO Field at Harry Grove Stadium (Frederick, Md.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Winston-Salem fell 2-1 Saturday on a walk-off double in the 11th inning. The Dash and Keys will play the middle game of their three-game set on Sunday.

Matt Heidenreich fired eight innings of one-run ball Saturday in a no-decision. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Matt Heidenreich fired eight innings of one-run ball Saturday in a no-decision. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – SS
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Omar Narvaez – C
T.J. Williams – DH
Nolan Earley – RF
Michael Danner – LF
James Dykstra – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Winston-Salem collected just three hits during Saturday’s loss, and the Dash did not muster a knock after the seventh inning. This marks the 11th time in 2015 that Winston-Salem has logged three hits or fewer. The Dash also dropped to 14-40 when scoring three runs or less. Within the eight-team Carolina League, Winston is in the basement in batting average at .240. 
  • Once again, the Dash were outstanding on the mound. Matt Heidenreich failed in his quest to become the fifth Minor League pitcher to reach 12 wins, but he did spin his second start of eight innings. In his last four outings, the Coronado, Calif., native boasts a 1.00 earned run average over 27.0 innings. In his 18 appearances this season, Heidenreich has worked six or more frames 14 times and posted a quality start 13 times. His 112.2 innings are the most in the CL. However, Mitch Horacek, Frederick’s Sunday starter, is in second place, only 5.1 innings away.
  • Winston-Salem boasts a 3.31 team earned run average, which is third-best in the CL (Myrtle Beach, 3.14; Wilmington, 3.20). At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is more than a full run lower (2.53). The bullpen has only permitted 18 earned runs in 86.2 innings (1.87 ERA) in half two. If the season ended today, Winston’s overall ERA would be the best in the Dash era (2009-now).
  • Thanks to a recent promotion, Winston-Salem boasts two of the six bast base stealers in the Minors. Infielder Eddy Alvarez, who joined the Dash on Wednesday, ripped off 42 stolen bases for Low-A Kannapolis. He has two thieveries in his first four games at the High-A level. His 44 are fifth-best in the Minor Leagues, while Adam Engel places sixth with 41. No other active player is within 14 of Engel in the CL. The White Sox are the only team with more than one prospect in the top 11, and they have three (Birmingham’s Tim Anderson, 11th with 35).
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 31 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • The Dash boast the White Sox first-round pick, right-hander Carson Fulmer. In his Dash debut on Thursday, Fulmer blanked Carolina over two frames, during which he logged three strikeouts. He is expected to start for the Dash again on Tuesday at home against Wilmington. During his three-year career at Vanderbilt, Fulmer was 24-3 with a 1.99 ERA. He led the Commodores to the College World Series Finals twice (2014 and 2015) and helped the program win its first baseball national championship in 2014.
  • Within the CL, Jake Peter is tied for second in hits (99) and even in sixth in runs scored (56). Adam Engel shares the top spot in runs (64), while he stands sixth in hits (96).
  • Trey Michalczewski is second to Lynchburg’s Nellie Rodriguez (73) among active Carolina Leaguers in RBIs (56).
  • Jeremy Dowdy’s season-long nine-game hitting streak came to an end on Saturday.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Sunday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 3:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 4 p.m.

– Scott

Game #100 Preview – Dash at Frederick

Game #100 – Road Game #49
Winston-Salem Dash (17-11, 47-51) at Frederick Keys (16-13, 48-51)
Saturday, July 25 – 6 p.m.
NYMEO Field at Harry Grove Stadium (Frederick, Md.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Keon Barnum went 4-for-5 with three RBIs to lead the Dash to a 7-2 victory in Friday’s rubber match against the Carolina Mudcats. Winston-Salem begins a three-game series Saturday at Frederick.

Keon Barnum has 17 RBIs in his last 20 games. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Keon Barnum has 17 RBIs in his last 20 games. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – SS
Jake Peter – LF
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – DH
Jeremy Dowdy – C
T.J. Williams – 1B
Cleuluis Rondon – 2B
Nolan Earley – RF
Matt Heidenreich – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Winston-Salem slugger Keon Barnum posted one of his best Minor League efforts in Friday’s rubber match. Barnum’s four hits and three RBIs matched career-highs. In his last 20 games dating back to July 3, the Florida native has collected 17 RBIs, including at least one in 11 games. Only Wilmington’s Mauricio Ramos (18) has more RBIs since July 3 than Barnum in all of High-A. During this impressive span, Barnum boasts a .286 (22-for-77) batting average. Before this surge began, the first baseman was hitting just .228 with 23 RBIs in 46 contests.
  • Barnum was not the only Dash hitter to deliver against the Mudcats. Winston-Salem’s seven runs equalled a high-water mark for the second half. The Dash have not scored more than seven runs in a game since their 10-8 loss at Lynchburg on June 6. Winston-Salem’s 14 hits, which were two shy of a season-best, came from seven different men (four multi-hit efforts).
  • Winston-Salem boasts a 3.33 team earned run average, which is third-best in the CL (Myrtle Beach, 3.17; Wilmington, 3.19). At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is more than a full run lower (2.59). The bullpen has only permitted 17 earned runs in 84.1 innings (1.81 ERA) in half two.
  • The Dash’s top two hitters–Adam Engel and Jake Peter–have thrived throughout the season. In the Carolina League, Engel is tied for fifth in hits (95) and alone in second in runs scored (63). Peter owns a share of third in hits (98) and all of sixth in runs (56). Both men are also dangerous on the base paths. Engel leads the CL in stolen bases with 41, which place him sixth in the Minor Leagues. Peter is tied for 11th in the Carolina League with 14. 
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 30 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • The Dash boast the White Sox first-round pick, right-hander Carson Fulmer. In his Dash debut on Thursday, Fulmer blanked Carolina over two frames, during which he logged three strikeouts. He is expected to start for the Dash again on Tuesday at home against Wilmington. During his three-year career at Vanderbilt, Fulmer was 24-3 with a 1.99 ERA. He led the Commodores to the College World Series Finals twice (2014 and 2015) and helped the program win its first baseball national championship in 2014.
  • For the first time in his Minor League career, Jake Peter started in left field on Friday. Peter has amassed 125 starts at second base and 24 at shortstop.
  • Eddy Alvarez collected his first High-A stolen base to give him 43, which are fifth-most in the Minors.
  • Winston-Salem has successfully converted 15 of its last 16 save opportunities, including a two-inning save from Euclides Leyer on Friday.
  • Reliever Peter Tago earned a promotion to Double-A Birmingham.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Saturday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 5:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 6 p.m.

– Scott

Game #99 Preview – Dash vs. Carolina

Game #99 – Home Game #51
Winston-Salem Dash (16-11, 46-51) vs. Carolina Mudcats (14-14, 48-49)
Friday, July 24 – 7 p.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

In his High-A debut, Carson Fulmer pitched two scoreless innings and then Brian Clark went five innings of one-run ball Thursday to lead the Dash to a 3-2 victory. Friday’s contest is the rubber match of a three-game set between Winston-Salem and Carolina.

Carson Fulmer shined Thursday in his High-A debut. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Carson Fulmer shined Thursday in his High-A debut. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Eddy Alvarez – SS
Jake Peter – LF
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Jeremy Dowdy – C
T.J. Williams – DH
Cleuluis Rondon – 2B
Nolan Earley – RF
Brandon Brennan – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • After coasting through an eight-pitch, three-batter first inning, Carson Fulmer whiffed back-to-back hitters before walking Joey Meneses and giving up a double to Jose Briceno in the second. However, Fulmer left those two men aboard by inducing a 1-3 groundout off the bat of JohaCamargo. Fulmer recorded 33 pitches, the majority of which were fastballs. This marked his second Minor League appearance, with his first coming for the rookie-level AZL White Sox on Saturday.
  • During his three-year career at Vanderbilt, Fulmer was 24-3 with a 1.99 ERA. He led the Commodores to the College World Series Finals twice (2014 and 2015) and helped the program win its first baseball national championship in 2014 over Virginia. The Lakeland, Fla., native won the SEC pitching triple crown in 2015 (14 wins, 1.83 ERA and 167 strikeouts), something that has only been accomplished four times and not since 2005 (Tennessee’s Luke Hochevar).
  • Winston-Salem boasts a 3.35 team earned run average, which is third-best in the CL. At the All-Star Break, the Dash owned a 3.62 ERA, but their second-half mark is exactly one run lower (2.62). The bullpen has only permitted 17 earned runs in 80.1 innings (1.90 ERA) in half two.
  • The Dash’s top two hitters–Adam Engel and Jake Peter–have thrived throughout the season. In the Carolina League, Engel is fifth in hits (95) and second place in runs scored (62). Peter owns a share of second in hits (97) and is alone in seventh in runs (54). Both men are also dangerous on the base paths. Engel leads the CL in stolen bases with 41, including seven in his last five games. Peter is tied for 11th on the circuit with 14. The Dash gained another great base stealer on Wednesday with the promotion of Eddy Alvarez from Kannapolis, who stole 42 bases while with the Intimidators.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 29 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • Following Friday’s rubber match, Winston-Salem heads to Frederick for a three-game series with the Keys, who have taken seven of the first 10 meetings between the two clubs. The Dash then return to BB&T Ballpark on Tuesday night for a pair of three-game series against Wilmington and Lynchburg. Thus, the Dash will play three straight Northern Division foes before a stretch of 18 out of 21 games against divisional foes.
  • Winston-Salem is 3-4 in its seven rubber games this season, with five of those coming at BB&T Ballpark (2-3).
  • The Dash are last in the Carolina League in batting average (.240) and posted their 53rd game of three or fewer runs on Friday, though they did win for the 14th time in those contests.
  • The Dash own a slight 38-37 lead in their all-time series with the Mudcats, who joined the Carolina League in 2012.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Friday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 6:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 7 p.m.

– Scott

Game #98 Preview – Dash vs. Carolina

Game #98 – Home Game #50
Winston-Salem Dash (15-11, 45-51) vs. Carolina Mudcats (14-13, 48-48)
Thursday, July 23 – 7 p.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Jordan Guerrero fanned 11 in six strong innings, but the Dash fell Wednesday in their series opener with Carolina 7-1. 2015 White Sox first-round pick Carson Fulmer makes his High-A debut Thursday.

Jordan Guerrero matched a career-high Wednesday with 11 strikeouts. (Erin Mizelle/W-S Dash)

Jordan Guerrero matched a career-high Wednesday with 11 strikeouts. (Erin Mizelle/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Omar Narvaez – C
Eddy Alvarez – DH
Nolan Earley – RF
Cleuluis Rondon – SS
Carson Fulmer – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Right-hander Carson Fulmer, the White Sox first-round pick in June’s MLB Draft, has been promoted to Winston-Salem from the Arizona League. He will start Thursday’s game against the Mudcats. Fulmer made his Minor League debut Saturday in the AZL, going one scoreless inning. During his three-year career at Vanderbilt, the Lakeland, Fla., native was 24-3 with a 1.99 ERA. He led the Commodores to the College World Series Finals twice (2014 and 2015) and helped the program win its first baseball national championship in 2014 over Virginia.
  • Fulmer will make his Dash debut one night after the best strikeout performance by a Dash starter in 2015. Not only did Guerrero match a career-high, but his 11 whiffs are tied for the second-most by a Winston-Salem hurler during the Dash era (2009-present). Guerrero’s effort trails only J.B. Wendelken’s 13 strikeouts in a blowout win over Frederick on July 30, 2014, which fell on the same day as the Dash debut of 2014 first-rounder Carlos Rodon, who pitched one inning.
  • While Dash pitching racked up a season-best 14 strikeouts, Winston-Salem’s offense mustered three hits, one more than its low-water mark. The Dash, who posted just one hit after the second, are last in the CL in average (.239).
  • The Dash’s top two hitters–Adam Engel and Jake Peter–have thrived throughout the season. In the Carolina League, Engel shares fifth place in hits (94) and second place in runs scored (61). Peter places fourth in hits (96) and tied for sixth in runs (52). Both men are also dangerous on the base paths. Engel leads the CL in stolen bases with 39, which are good for a share of seventh place in all of Minor League Baseball. Peter is tied for 11th on the circuit with 14. The Dash gained another great base stealer on Wednesday with the promotion of Eddy Alvarez from Kannapolis. Alvarez is fifth in the Minors with 42 stolen bases, all with the Intimidators.
  • Dash cleanup hitter Keon Barnum drove home the club’s lone run on Wednesday with a double in the first. Barnum has collected 14 RBIs in his last 18 games, with at least one in 10 of them. In his previous 36 games, the Tampa, Fla., native had only amassed 13 RBIs.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 28 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012. Winston’s stranglehold is in danger on Thursday, though. A Dash loss and a Myrtle Beach win would allow the Birds to leapfrog the Dash.
  • Outfielder Nick Basto saw his seven-game hit streak, his longest of 2015, come to an end on Wednesday thanks to an 0-for-4 showing.
  • The Dash surrendered more runs during the ninth on Wednesday than they had since Wilmington scored six in the fifth on June 10 at BB&T Ballpark, an 11-5 Blue Rocks victory.
  • To make room for Fulmer, catcher Sean O’Connell was placed on the 7-day disabled list, retroactive to July 22.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Thursday’s game will be broadcast live on 600 AM-WSJS and wsjs.com, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 6:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 7 p.m.

– Scott

Game #97 Preview – Dash vs. Carolina

Game #97 – Home Game #49
Winston-Salem Dash (15-10, 45-50) vs. Carolina Mudcats (13-13, 47-48)
Wednesday, July 22 – 7 p.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

The Mudcats make their first visit to BB&T Ballpark since April 20-22 when they begin a three-game series Wednesday against Winston-Salem.

Nick Basto is working on a seven-game hitting streak. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Nick Basto is working on a seven-game hitting streak. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Omar Narvaez – C
T.J. Williams – DH
Eddy Alvarez – SS
Nolan Earley – RF
Jordan Guerrero – LHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 27 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012. Winston’s stranglehold is in danger Wednesday. A Dash loss and a Myrtle Beach win, which would be the Pelicans’ ninth in a row, would allow the Birds to leapfrog the Dash.
  • The Dash and Mudcats have already seen each other seven times during the second half, one more than the two clubs’ total in half one. They will still play each other nine more times before the end of the regular season, with six of those games in the Triad. It has been a fairly even season series thus far, with Winston-Salem owning a slight 7-6 advantage and Carolina boasting a 48-46 edge in runs. Neither team has won more than two in a row against the other.
  • For only the fourth time this half, the Dash gave up more than five runs in a game on Tuesday. Lynchburg’s 15 hits were also one shy of the most by a Dash opponent this season. Overall, Winston-Salem has been strong on the hill with a 3.38 ERA, third-best on the eight-team circuit.
  • The Dash’s top two hitters–Adam Engel and Jake Peter–have thrived throughout the season. In the Carolina League, Engel sits in fifth place in hits (93) and second place in runs scored (61). Peter places second in hits (96) and sixth in runs (52). In addition to his tremendous hits and runs numbers, Engel also leads the CL with 38 stolen bases, which are tied for seventh-most in the Minor Leagues. Engel has 13 more swipes than the next-closest active CL player (Carolina’s Connor Lien, 25). Peter, who logged just his third 0-for-5 game of the season on Tuesday, is second on the Dash and tied for 11th in the CL with 14 stolen bases.
  • The heart of the Dash’s order has also produced as of late. Three-hole hitter Trey Michalczewski has driven in a run in nine of his last 11 games. He stands third in the CL with 55 RBIs. Keon Barnum collected two more RBIs in Tuesday’s contest, giving him 13 in his last 17 games. He also went deep in the third inning, his fifth long ball of the season. Nick Basto has hit safely in all seven games since returning to Winston-Salem. He is 10-for-26 (.348) with two runs and five RBIs during this run, which also includes three straight multi-hit games.
  • Wednesday starting pitcher Jordan Guerrero eyes some revenge against a Carolina club that scored six runs (five earned) on seven hits against him five days ago in Zebulon. Guerrero worked two and two-thirds innings, representing his shortest Minor League start. The southpaw had reached at least the sixth inning in each of his previous five outings dating back to June 18.
  • Barnum’s home run gave Winston-Salem its 32nd of the season. The Dash are last in the CL in homers. Winston is also in the basement with a .241 batting average, though the Dash are only one point shy of Carolina.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Wednesday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 6:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 7 p.m.

– Scott

Game #96 Preview – Dash vs. Lynchburg

Game #96 – Home Game #48
Winston-Salem Dash (15-9, 45-49) vs. Lynchburg Hillcats (10-15, 43-52)
Tuesday, July 21 – 7 p.m.
BB&T Ballpark (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

GAME BACKGROUND:

Winston-Salem plated five runs in the first inning Monday en route to a 6-3 victory. The Dash vie for their first home sweep of the season on Tuesday.

Keon Barnum drove in two runs Monday against Lynchburg. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

Keon Barnum has driven in 11 runs in the last 16 games. (Jody Stewart/W-S Dash)

STARTING LINEUP:

Adam Engel – CF
Jake Peter – 2B
Trey Michalczewski – 3B
Keon Barnum – 1B
Nick Basto – LF
Omar Narvaez – DH
Nolan Earley – RF
Cleuluis Rondon – SS
Sean O’Connell – C
James Dykstra – RHP

DASH DOTS:

  • Matt Heidenreich became the fifth pitcher in Minor League Baseball to collect his 11th victory. In this category, he trails only Jacob Faria (Tampa Bay) and Angel Sanchez (Pittsburgh), both of whom have recorded 12 victories with two Minor League clubs. Sanchez is a former Winston-Salem pitcher (2014), as is Bowie’s Terry Doyle (2010 and 2011), who is one of the two men tied with Heidenreich for third place with 11 wins.
  • Winston-Salem is 14-3 in games that Heidenreich has started, and the right-hander has worked through six innings in 13 of those 17 outings. The Coronado, Calif., native not only leads the CL in victories with 11, but no other hurler has more than seven. Heidenreich also paces the circuit and is sixth in High-A in innings (104.2), while the Midseason All-Star is third in the CL and sixth in High-A in earned run average (2.49).
  • Once again, the Dash’s offense came through with a strong showing for Heidenreich, who has received 5.1 runs of support per game. The Dash plated five in the opening frame, their largest such showing in the first since ripping off eight against Salem on April 20, 2014. Winston-Salem has scored more runs in the first (60) than any other frame. In Monday’s opening inning, Winston-Salem sent all nine to the plate.
  • The Dash’s top two hitters–Adam Engel and Jake Peter–have thrived throughout the season. In the Carolina League, Engel shares fourth place in hits (92) and is tied for second in runs scored (60), while Peter places second in hits (96) and sixth in runs (52). Engel also paces the eight-team league in stolen bases with 37, which are tied for sixth-most in the Minor Leagues. Engel has 12 more swipes than the next-closest active Carolina Leaguer (Carolina’s Connor Lien, 25). Peter is second on the Dash and tied for 11th in the CL with 14 stolen bases.
  • The heart of the Dash’s order has also produced as of late. Three-hole hitter Trey Michalczewski has driven in a run in nine of his last 10 games. He stands third in the CL with 55 RBIs. Keon Barnum collected two more RBIs in Monday’s victory, giving him 11 in his last 16 contests. This does not include his three-run blast in Sunday’s continuation game from June 27. Also, Jeremy Dowdy and Nick Basto are riding season-long hit streaks of eight and six games, respectively.
  • Winston-Salem was in last place in the Southern Division for the final 50 days of the season’s first half. However, the Dash have enjoyed at least a share of first place for the first 26 days of half two. In their previous five halves (2013 first half to 2015 first half), the Dash were in first for a combined 33 days. This current first-place streak is Winston’s longest since being in the top spot for the final 35 days of the second half in 2012.
  • Tuesday starter James Dykstra is mired in a career-worst eight-game losing streak, though he has worked at least six innings and permitted no more than four runs in each of his last six starts. In those outings, Dykstra is 0-5, and the Dash are 1-5.
  • Following Tuesday’s finale against Lynchburg, Winston will entertain the Carolina Mudcats for a three-game set. This is the Muddies’ first visit to the Triad since April 20-22.

BROADCAST INFORMATION:

Tuesday’s game will be available on wsdash.com/broadcast, along with the TuneIn Radio app. The Pregame Dash will begin at 6:45 p.m., with the first pitch at approximately 7 p.m.

– Scott

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