Results tagged ‘ Chris Curley ’
Dash infielder Jeremy Farrell has been on a hot streak of late, going 4-4 with three doubles and a home run in Tuesday night’s series opener against Salem. He has also homered in back to back games, after also hitting one Sunday in the series finale against Potomac at BB&T Ballpark. Farrell has now tied Chris Curley and Courtney Hawkins for the team lead in home runs with seven. He has also driven in 32 runs, a total that is second to Myrtle Beach’s Trever Adams for the Carolina League lead.
Growing up, Farrell and his brothers were around the game all the time. His father, Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell, was a player in the major leagues for a few seasons with the Indians, Angels and Tigers before joining the coaching ranks. Jeremy says that having his dad in and around the game all the time helped him to prepare for his own baseball career:
“My brothers and I wouldn’t have had it any other way growing up around the ballpark. It was a great way to grow up. We learned a lot and always had a great role model in our dad.”
Now Jeremy has the chance to be the same kind of mentor to his own son after he and his wife Bridget celebrated the birth of their first child during the offseason.
“It’s great to be able to bring him around the clubhouse even though he’s too young to really know what’s going on. It’s a unique experience and something I hope I can pass on to him like my dad did with us.”
The new addition to the family was just one part of a wild offseason for Jeremy as he spent spring training with the Pittsburgh Pirates’ organization before being released and signing with the White Sox on Opening Day. Having spent his entire minor league career in one organization, he didn’t know what to expect at first. After settling in with the White Sox, Farrell is happy with where he has landed:
“The Chicago White Sox have been great so far. There’s a lot of great people who are here to help you and I have thoroughly enjoyed my time here so far. I am looking forward to what the future brings.”
Winston-Salem is certainly glad to have him, too. Farrell has been a key cog in the middle of the Dash’s order throughout the season, especially during this four-game winning streak.
The Dash will wrap up their three-game series with the Salem Red Sox with a doubleheader today after last night’s rainout. Game one starts at 5:05 p.m. Join Brian here for the Pregame Dash starting at 4:50 p.m.
The Dash are getting ready to wrap up a three-game series at Myrtle Beach tonight, but before that let’s check out some notes in a Wednesday edition of Dash Dots:
- Tonight’s starter Chris Bassitt did not give up a run in any of his four appearances (one start and three relief outings) against Myrtle Beach last season. In total, Bassitt gave up just four hits and four walks while striking out seven in nine and a third innings against the Pelicans in 2012. These numbers do not include his seven scoreless frames against Myrtle in the deciding third game of the SDCS last September.
- Mark Haddow is currently on a nine-game hitting streak, the longest in the Carolina League this season. He has picked up at least one hit in every game he has played so far this season, except for Opening Day. Haddow received his first day off yesterday.
- Chris Curley has a six-game hitting streak of his own going, including four straight multi-hit efforts. This streak has bumped his season average to .361, putting him sixth in the Carolina League. The infielder is also tied for fourth on the circuit with three homers and tied for third with 10 RBIs.
- Despite not having a home run in either of the first two games of their series against the Pelicans, the Dash still lead the circuit with 12 long balls on the season. Winston-Salem did not homer in the first two games of the season either and is now 0-4 when they don’t go deep at least once.
- Dash alum Addison Reed has been crucial to the White Sox this season. Coming into today, the South Siders are 6-8, with Reed picking up either the save or the win in all six of their victories.
- Double-A Birmingham was down by one last night to Chattanooga and down to their final strike when Dash alum Michael Blanke doubled in two runs to give the Barons the lead. Fellow Dash alum Taylor Thompson finished things off with a scoreless ninth to pickup the win in relief. Today, Michael Earley hit a two-run homer in the top of the ninth to knot the score, but the Lookouts did prevail with a 5-4 win.
The Dash wrap up their series with the Pelicans tonight at 7:05 from TicketReturn.com Field. A win puts Winston-Salem and Myrtle Beach in a tie atop the Southern Division. Catch Brian here with the Pregame Dash at 6:50.
The Louisville Cardinals won college basketball’s national championship Monday night, almost exactly one year after the Kentucky Wildcats accomplished the feat. In the state of Kentucky, there is a strong divide between the fans of the U of L and UK.
The Dash have a pair of players who hail from the state of Kentucky. Chris Curley (Fort Mitchell, Ky.) and Daniel Webb (Paducah, Ky.) are from the Bluegrass State, and both have unique viewpoints on their home state’s top two basketball programs.
Curley does not root for either team. He went to college in the state of Kentucky, but the infielder chose Campbellsville University, which is south of Louisville and Lexington.
However, Curley did want the Cardinals to seal the deal Monday night, even though he had allegiances on both sides of the title tilt. “I was rooting for Louisville just to keep [the national title] in Kentucky,” Curley said. “My college roommate is from Louisville, and my other one is from Michigan, so they were having a battle all day.”
Webb did grow up a Kentucky fan, but he was rooting for Louisville coach Rick Pitino, who used to guide UK’s program from 1989-97. Pitino is no longer a fan favorite in Lexington, but Webb still supports him.
“I’ve always been a Rick Pitino fan,” Webb said. “I’m happy for Louisville.”
Webb’s hometown of Paducah has plenty of Wildcats fans and Cardinals fans, so Webb’s opinion is a different one. However, he appreciates what Pitino did for the Wildcats, especially the 1996 NCAA title.
The state of Kentucky loves its hoops, and both Curley and Webb fit that mold. However, they are in the minority in Kentucky when it comes to one thing: being neutral about Louisville and Kentucky.
The Dash are 0-3 to start the season, but there are many reasons for optimism. Don’t fret, Dash fans. Here’s why:
- The Dash were swept for the first time since July 9-11 of 2011. After 57 consecutive series without a sweep, the law of averages seems to have finally caught up with the Dash.
- Winston-Salem is 0-3 for the first time since 2005. That season, the club rebounded after its slow start to win 77 games and make the Carolina League playoffs. The season is not lost.
- Grant Buckner had a great weekend at the plate, going 4-for-10 (.400) with three doubles, a run scored and an RBI. Although must of his teammates scuffled at the plate throughout the weekend, he remains optimistic: “I feel like offensively we have a great team. Some guys may not show in their stats that they’ve been swinging the bat well, but it’s going to come. I think it’s all going to come together.”
- Chris Curley had a solid weekend as well, going 3-for-10 (.300) with the Dash’s lone home run of the weekend. He also drove in a team-high three runs.
- Making his high-A debut yesterday, right-hander Chris Beck did not give up an earned run in four and two-thirds innings.
- On Saturday, fellow righty Chris Bassitt gave up just one run and struck out six in five innings. Despite the team’s early struggles, Bassitt believes it’s just a matter of time before this group hits its stride: “We have a lot of talent still on this team and we have a lot of guys that can really step up. It’s all about coming together and learning how to win with the group of guys that we have.”
- Finally, this isn’t the 2012 version of the Carolina Mudcats. The Dash’s division rivals have two of the top five prospects in the Indians’ organization and five of the top 30 on their roster, according to Baseball America. The duo in the top five (Francisco Lindor and Tyler Naquin) combined to go 10-for-22 (.455) with five runs scored and six RBIs. The Muddies look like a formidable squad in the Southern Division race.
The Dash are enjoying a rare off-day today before starting a stretch of 30 games in 30 days, which begins tomorrow with the first of a three-game set at Frederick. Tomorrow’s game starts at 7 p.m. with Brian on the air at 6:45 for the Pregame Dash.
The trip to Zebulon is complete, and the Dash are gearing up for their first batting practice of the season in moments. New skipper Ryan Newman has submitted his first starting lineup of the season, and it looks like this:
LF Billy Rice
2B Joey DiMichele
CF Courtney Hawkins
C Kevan Smith
DH Mark Tracy
RF Mark Haddow
1B Grant Buckner
3B Chris Curley
SS David Herbek
RHP Bryan Blough
Our pregame coverage begins with the Pregame Dash at 7 p.m., with first pitch 15 minutes later. The season is upon us! Enjoy following along all season long.
One of the final steps before the Dash’s season can begin is the release of the Opening Day roster, which happened today. Dash fans know about some of these 25 players, while others will suit up for Winston-Salem for the first time Friday at Carolina. Let’s take a look at all of these players and how they fit within the roster.
The top prospect:
OF Courtney Hawkins
No White Sox prospect will draw as much attention as Hawkins will during the 2013 season. Chicago’s first-round pick 10 months ago, Hawkins hit three homers and drove in seven runs in 12 High-A games last season. He will likely get a longer look at this level while trying to live up to the billing of being the Sox top prospect and one of the top 100 players in the minors.
The other ranked farmhands:
RHP Chris Beck, INF Joey DeMichele & C Kevan Smith
In addition to Hawkins’ place atop Baseball America’s White Sox prospect rankings, three other players who will open the season with Winston-Salem found themselves on the publication’s Top 30 list. Beck (10th) makes the jump from short-season Great Falls, while DeMichele (24th) is a player that many believe can climb the minor league ladder quickly. Most Dash fans remember Smith (27th) and his big grand slam in the SDCS-clinching win over Myrtle Beach last season. He will likely receive the majority of the playing time available behind the plate.
The returning hurlers:
RHP J.R. Ballinger, RHP Chris Bassitt, RHP Bryan Blough, RHP Justin Collop, RHP Terance Marin, LHP Max Peterson & RHP Steven Upchurch
The Dash’s pitching staff was one of the best in the Carolina League last season, and more than half of the Dash’s Opening Day pitchers suited up for Winston-Salem at some point last season. Pitching coach J.R. Perdew also returns after the tremendous 2012 season. All seven of these pitchers have had success at this level, which bodes well for the Dash in 2013.
The “prove it” player:
INF David Herbek
Herbek’s 2012 season was unique. He hit just .214 in 43 games with Low-A Kannapolis, but the White Sox moved him up to Winston-Salem in late June. The Virginia native responded by swinging at a .313 clip in 47 games. Herbek figures to see significant time with the Dash, so will he be closer to his Kannapolis form or his Winston-Salem self? You have to like his chances to be a scary hitter on this circuit like he was down the stretch a year ago.
The new White Sox:
RHP Jeremy Erben, OF Nick Giarraputo & INF Mark Tracy
Three men on the 25-man roster were not with the organization last season. The White Sox signed Erben in spring training, just a few days after Arizona released him. Giarraputo is back in affiliated baseball after three seasons on the independent circuit. Tracy joined the Sox organization following a trade with Colorado. Former Dash outfielder Kenny Williams, Jr., was shipped to the Rockies in that deal. This trio will be hungry to contribute early on as White Sox farmhands.
INF Chris Curley, OF Mark Haddow & OF Billy Rice
These three men all joined Winston-Salem at some point last season, but the threesome combined for only 11 regular season games with the Dash. Curley shined in the final week of the regular season before hitting .500 in the CL postseason, while Haddow and Rice struggled a bit in their limited at-bats after playing well for Low-A Kannapolis. How will these three swingers adjust to a prolonged stay in the Triad? That answer may dictate how effective the offense will be this season.
The Kannapolis kids:
INF Grant Buckner, LHP Jarrett Casey, INF Joe De Pinto & RHP Daniel Webb
These four players spent most or all of their 2012 seasons with Low-A Kannapolis. The jump from Low-A to High-A is not an easy one, but all four of these men will get the chance to do it following spring training.
The catching couple:
C Martin Medina & C Brent Tanner
With Smith in the fold, how will skipper Ryan Newman find playing time for these two backstops? Both Medina and Tanner have shown promise in the minors, but there is only so many at-bats to go around. Last season, the Dash rarely had three catchers on the roster, so this will be a challenge for Newman and hitting coach Rob Sasser.
The comeback candidate:
RHP Cody Winiarski
Winiarski missed all of last season with a back injury, and he only has 17 career minor league efforts under his belt. Last season, Kyle Bellamy returned from a season-long injury to shine with Winston before heading to Double-A. Winiarski will look to do the same for the Dash in 2013.
Hopefully this gives you some more insight on the first roster for the Dash in 2013. The season is three days away, and we will have plenty more coverage leading up to Friday’s season opener here on the Dash Board.
Mills Cup Championship Series
Winston-Salem Dash at Lynchburg Hillcats
Wednesday, September 12 — 6:05 p.m.
Game 4 — Hillcats lead series 2-1
GAME 4 BACKGROUND:
After more than five months of baseball in the Carolina League, the Mills Cup could be awarded to Lynchburg tonight. However, the Dash are hoping to force a winner-take-all Game 5 Thursday after dropping Game 3 1-0 at Lynchburg City Stadium Tuesday night.
The Mills Cup Championship Series has not seen a Game 5 since 2005, when Frederick bested Kinston to claim the CL championship. The Hillcats last won it all in 2009, while Winston-Salem has not claimed the Cup since 2003.
Winston-Salem — LHP Scott Snodgress (4-0, 1.50 ERA): Snodgress takes to the mound for the second time this postseason, and he is in familiar territory. With the Dash trailing by a game in the best-of-three Southern Division Championship Series, Snodgress worked into the seventh inning for the first time in his Dash career and allowed three runs, only one of which was earned, on three hits. During the regular season, the former Stanford star surrendered just seven earned runs in eight starts. In his only effort against Lynchburg during the regular season, Snodgress blanked the ‘Cats over four innings August 21.
Lynchburg — RHP Aaron Northcraft (10-11, 3.98 ERA): With a chance at a championship, Lynchburg turns to Northcraft after he allowed just one run in six and two-thirds innings Friday in the NDCS-clinching win over Wilmington. Northcraft has twirled four straight quality starts dating back to August 22. The Tucson, Ariz., native has faced off with the Dash five times. He is 1-2 with a 3.77 ERA in those efforts.
- Winston-Salem has not played in a winner-take-all game in the championship set since 1973. Winston defeated Lynchburg in that series to claim the Mills Cup. Winston’s last MCCS win also came against Lynchburg back in 2003.
- Lynchburg handed the Dash their sixth shutout of the season Tuesday, but it was the first since June 24 (7-0 v. Salem at home), a span of 70 games.
- With last night’s shutout, the Dash have only mustered a run in 10 of their 51 offensive innings. Winston has been very dependent on the long ball, too. The Dash have needed the home run for 10 of their 21 postseason runs.
- Terance Marin’s two scoreless innings in Game 3 lowered the bullpen’s ERA to 0.49 during the postseason. Winston-Salem relievers have only surrendered one earned run in 18.1 frames in the playoffs.
- Lynchburg starters have befuddled the Dash thus far in the Mills Cup Finals. The trio of Michael Lee, Ryan Weber and Gus Schlosser combined to give up just two runs, one of which was earned, in 18.1 innings.
- The Dash have scored only six runs over the last three games, which is the lowest number of tallies over a three-game span since May 16-18. This three-game offensive output is tied for the second-lowest this season for Winston-Salem.
- Despite the loss, Chris Curley continued his hitting streak to begin his Dash career. Curley has hit safely in nine in a row (three regular season and six postseason games). While wearing the Dash purple, Curley is 14-for-29 (.483) with eight runs scored.
AN EYE ON THE WHITE SOX FARM:
The only other White Sox affiliate still alive lost last night, too. Triple-A Charlotte dropped Game 1 of the Governors’ Cup Finals at Pawtucket. Charlotte starter Charlie Leesman left in the first inning due to an undisclosed injury, and the PawSox took advantage by homering three times. Game 2 of this set is set for 7:05 p.m. from Rhode Island before shifting to Charlotte for the final three possible games.
Dash fans can catch the club’s quest for a 12th Mills Cup by tuning in here. Fans are encouraged to tweet @WSDashBaseball and use the Dash’s official playoff hashtag: #Dash12. The Pre-Game Dash begins at 5:45 p.m. and features a chat with manager Tommy Thompson and a look ahead to the biggest game of the season.
Mills Cup Championship Series
Winston-Salem Dash at Lynchburg Hillcats
Tuesday, September 11 — 6:05 p.m.
Game 3 — Series tied 1-1
GAME 3 BACKGROUND:
For the first time this postseason, the Dash will play away from BB&T Ballpark. During the regular season, Winston-Salem went 4-6 against the Hillcats inside Lynchburg City Stadium, which is one of two places (Salem’s LewisGale Field the other) where the Dash had a record below .500 this season. Because of the split at BB&T Ballpark, Winston and Lynchburg are down to a best-of-three for the Mills Cup Championship. The Dash led the circuit with 16 three-game series victories.
Winston-Salem — RHP Erik Johnson (4-3, 2.74 ERA): The Dash send Johnson to the mound after he lost Game 1 of the SDCS. Johnson was one strike away from six no-hit innings before surrendering four runs and exiting the contest before the sixth came to an end. During the regular season, the former California Golden Bear recorded a quality start in all but one of his High-A appearances. That start came against Lynchburg August 23 (5IP, 6R).
Lynchburg — RHP Gus Schlosser (13-7, 3.38 ERA): Schlosser claimed the Carolina League Pitcher of the Year award after finishing first in the league in wins (13) and innings (165.1), tied for first in starts (27), second in strikeouts (139), and third in earned run average (3.38) and WHIP (1.14). Winston held its own against the righty, mustering five runs on 11 hits in 13 innings of work. He did whiff 18 Dash swingers in those two efforts.
- Since 2005, the MCCS has been tied at one game apiece four times, and the road team for the final three games has won the series twice. In all four instances, the winner of Game 3 went on to take the series in four games.
- Frederick won back-to-back games in Kinston last year, while the Keys also won consecutive games at Salem in 2007 for the crown. The Dash lost two straight at Potomac two years ago, while the P-Nats claimed the title with two wins at home over Myrtle in 2008.
- The Dash’s bullpen has allowed only one earned run in 16.1 innings this postseason. Lynchburg’s only earned tally against a Dash reliever came in the ninth inning Sunday during Taylor Thompson’s six-out save. Thompson had not surrendered an earned run since July 8, a span of 18 appearances.
- Winston-Salem third baseman Chris Curley has hit safely in eight games with the Dash since a promotion from Low-A Kannapolis August 31. The former Florence Freedom star is a combined 13-for-28 (.464) with eight runs between the regular season and playoffs.
- In its first five playoffs games, Winston-Salem has only scored in 10 of a possible 42 innings. However, four of those 10 frames have brought about three or more runs.
- Winston has hit six homers in the playoffs, while the rest of the league has combined for the same number of long balls. Three Dash swingers–Courtney Hawkins, Marcus Semien and Kevan Smith–each have two apiece.
- The Dash’s 4-6 regular season mark in Lynchburg included a pair of two-out-of-three series losses and a four-game split. Despite owning a two-game gap in the 10 meetings, the Hillcats only outscored Winston-Salem 49-44 at home.
AN EYE ON THE WHITE SOX FARM:
Since the Dash last played Sunday afternoon, one White Sox affiliate advanced to a championship series, while another fell two runs short. Triple-A Charlotte took down Indianapolis three games to one to clinch a spot in the Governors’ Cup Finals against the Pawtucket Red Sox. Game 1 of this best-of-five series is tonight at 7:05 in Rhode Island. On the flip side, rookie-level Great Falls fell short in its bid to repeat as Pioneer League champions. The Voyagers lost a deciding Game 3 of a PL semifinal to Missoula 4-2 Sunday.
Dash fans can catch the club’s quest for a 12th Mills Cup by tuning in here. Fans are encouraged to tweet @WSDashBaseball and use the Dash’s official playoff hashtag: #Dash12. The Pre-Game Dash begins at 5:45 p.m. and features a chat with manager Tommy Thompson and an audio look into the Dash’s offensive bounce back Sunday afternoon.
If something isn’t broken, why fix it?
Maybe that was the mentality for the Dash in the Mills Cup Championship Series after a strange but effective route to a Southern Division Championship Series triumph against Myrtle Beach.
Against the Pelicans, Winston-Salem mustered only two runs in the set’s first 14 innings. With nine outs remaining in Game 2, the Dash were down by one with their season on the line. Winston’s offense woke up to the tune of three runs in the seventh to even the series and a combined nine tallies in the second and third frames of the winner-take-all Game 3 clash.
The next night, the Dash turned in their second straight one-run performance in a playoff series opener. In Game 2, Lynchburg held a 3-1 lead entering the sixth inning. This time around, elimination wasn’t a possibility, but going down two games with three road games remaining is as close as you can get in a best-of-five set.
Once again, Winston-Salem’s bats woke up. Three runs in the sixth, capped off by Kevan Smith’s two-run bomb to give the Dash the lead, ultimately tilted the momentum in the way of the home team.
For the second time in four days, the Dash stormed back for a Game 2 victory they had to have. Sunday’s win doesn’t mean Winston-Salem will win the series, but it likely kept the club afloat. Now, it comes down to a best-of-three in Lynchburg for the Mills Cup.
Sure, Winston-Salem will have to overcome plenty of obstacles for a Carolina League crown. The Dash went just 4-6 in Lynchburg during the regular season. The Hillcats will send the circuit’s Pitcher of the Year, righty Gus Schlosser, to the mound tomorrow night. And, of course, Lynchburg is a really good team.
However, the Dash have plenty going in their favor:
- Smith is hitting the ball as well as anyone has over a week-long stretch in the Carolina League this season.
- Chris Curley is the best nine-hole hitter in the CL right now, and it isn’t close.
- Keenyn Walker and Daniel Wagner (who is still working hard on this off day) are setting the table for the heart of Winston-Salem’s order.
- Marcus Semien, with a go-ahead homer, a go-ahead two-run double and an insurance homer in this postseason, has been extremely clutch for the Dash.
- Courtney Hawkins, with an RBI in four of the five postseason contests, hasn’t been too shabby on that front, either. This kid is for real.
- Dan Black is oh so due for a big game.
- So is Cyle Hankerd.
- Tuesday’s starter Erik Johnson should have had a no-hit bid through six innings in Game 1 of the SDCS Wednesday against Myrtle Beach.
- Winston’s final two starters–Scott Snodgress and Chris Bassitt–shined in round one with the Dash’s collective back against the wall.
- Every member of the Dash’s bullpen, which has allowed just one earned run in 16.1 innings in the playoffs, will be available for Game 3.
The Hillcats are good, but so is Winston-Salem. At the beginning of the season, Dash fans would’ve loved the idea of needing two wins in three tries to win a Mills Cup. That’s what the assignment is for the Dash, and for the reasons above and many others, this club has a great chance to get it done.
Winston-Salem rallied for a thrilling 5-4 victory over Lynchburg in Game 2 of the Mills Cup Championship Series Sunday afternoon at BB&T Ballpark. First off, hear from the man who gave the Dash their first lead in the series–catcher Kevan Smith.
Now, it’s time for our postgame analysis.
- Wow. Once again, the Dash’s collective back was against the wall in a Game 2, and this offense found a way to battle back for a narrow win. After five frustrating innings of offense, Smith, Daniel Wagner and Keenyn Walker came up with huge hits in the sixth, and Marcus Semien’s solo shot in the eighth proved to be the difference in the game. This offense, despite struggling at times in the playoffs, is so good.
- Everyone knew Dash skipper Tommy Thompson was going to be the Carolina League’s Manager of the Year, and he pushed the right button today when he submitted his lineup card. Winston’s catcher had hit in the seven hole in all four previous postseason contests, but Thompson switched Smith with Cyle Hankerd. Sure enough, Smith’s turn came around when the Dash needed a hit, and the former Pittsburgh star came through in a big way.
- As for Semien’s homer, credit the former sixth-round pick for coming up with the first run scored against Lynchburg reliever John Cornely at the High-A level. Semien is only 3-for-18 in the playoffs, but those three hits have been huge: solo homer in the first inning of Game 2 of the SDCS, game-winning two-run double in that same game and this homer today. Semien is a clutch player.
- How important has Chris Curley been to this playoff run? He is 8-for-16 with four runs scored, and the late-season acquisition made the defensive play of the game in the seventh. Curley, who was playing in on the grass, stabbed a Nick Ahmed liner and doubled off a runner at second to end the threat.
- Starter Justin Collop and reliever Taylor Thompson turned in gritty efforts Sunday, and both Max Peterson and Kevin Vance continued to pitch well out of the bullpen. All in all, a solid day for Winston’s pitching staff.
- Thank goodness Andrelton Simmons will be heading back to Atlanta tomorrow, according to multiple reports. It is incredible that this young man played in the CL last year. His ninth-inning double was one of the hardest-hit balls I’ve seen this year.
- Series tied at one game apiece. Momentum-shifting Game 3 on the horizon. Erik Johnson versus Gus Schlosser. It doesn’t get much better than that, and it’s 47 hours away.
The Dash and Hillcats have tomorrow off, but the Dash Board blog will be packed with more #Dash12 coverage in advance of Game 3 Tuesday. Talk to you then.