Results tagged ‘ Jackie Bradley Jr. ’
Since it opened in April of 2010, there have been numerous great players to play on BB&T Ballpark’s field. Here we have compiled a list of the some of the greatest players to play here in the park’s short history:
Jackie Bradley, Jr.: A member of the 2012 Salem Red Sox and the 2012 Carolina League All-Star team, Bradley was the Opening Day left fielder for the Boston Red Sox this year.
Dylan Bundy: The right-hander made 12 starts for the Frederick Keys last year, and tossed a scoreless inning for the Carolina League in last year’s All-Star Game. He came into 2013 as the number two rated prospect in all of baseball by Baseball America.
Adam Dunn: The slugger came with the White Sox when they played the Dash at BB&T Ballpark in an exhibition game prior to the 2011 season. Mostly a designated hitter the last several years, Dunn had a string of five consecutive seasons with 40 or more home runs from 2004-2008 and is fifth among active players with 413 career home runs.
Billy Hamilton: The speedster represented the Bakersfield Blaze on the California League All-Star team last season and stole two bases in the first inning of the All-Star Game. Hamilton set a record for stolen bases in a minor league season in 2012 with 147 swipes.
Eric Hosmer: Now in his third season as the everyday first baseman for the Kansas City Royals, Hosmer played in the Carolina League with the Wilmington Blue Rocks in 2009 and 2010. In 2010, he won the league’s batting title after posting a .354 average.
Paul Konerko: Now in his 17th season in the big leagues, Konerko was another member of that 2011 White Sox squad that played at BB&T Ballpark in March of that year. The first baseman has 1,352 RBIs in his career, ranking him fifth among all active players.
Manny Machado: A shortstop while coming through the Baltimore Orioles’ system, the 2011 Key alum made the big leagues late last season where he played down the stretch and in the playoffs at third base. Now in his first full season with the Orioles, Machado is the team’s regular third baseman.
Wil Myers: The 2012 Minor League Player of the Year, Myers applied his trade for a long time in the Kansas City system before being traded to the Tampa Bay Rays this past off-season. Considered one of the best hitting prospects in the game, Myers hit .346 in 58 games for the Blue Rocks in 2010.
Addison Reed: Now the closer for the White Sox, the hard-throwing righty had a brief stint with the Dash during the 2011 season. Reed appeared in 15 games out of the Winston-Salem bullpen, posting a 1.59 ERA in 28.1 IP.
Anthony Rizzo: Now the proud owner of a new contract extension that will keep him with the Chicago Cubs through at least 2019, Rizzo was once a Red Sox farmhand. The first baseman played for Salem in 2009 and 2010 before being traded to San Diego in the Adrian Gonzalez deal, and eventually to the Cubs prior to 2012.
Chris Sale: On July 2, 2010 the southpaw made his professional debut here at BB&T Ballpark in front of what was then the highest attendance in the park’s history at 7,268. Sale would reach the big leagues later in the 2010 season, and is now the ace of the White Sox rotation. In his most recent outing, he nearly threw a perfect game against the Angels.
Andrelton Simmons: The shortstop hit .311 during the 2011 campaign as a Lynchburg Hillcat, and also did some damage as a Hillcat in the 2012 Carolina League Playoffs while on a rehab assignment. Simmons hit two home runs in the playoffs including one against the Dash in the Mills Cup Finals. He is now the regular starting shortstop for the Atlanta Braves.
Come join us tonight as we celebrate the one millionth fan in BB&T Ballpark’s history! One lucky fan will be randomly selected to play a game of chance to win either one million dollars, a two-year lease on a vehicle from Flow Auto, or two Dash tickets for life!
If you can’t make it to the park, join me here at 6:45 for the Pregame Dash with first pitch to follow at 7. Tonight’s game will also be broadcast on 600-AM WSJS in the Winston-Salem area. Talk to you then!
The Dash and Mudcats are back at it tonight after Carolina cruised to a 10-1 victory last night in the season opener. Before the middle match of this weekend series, there are plenty of news, notes and stats to discuss.
FOUR ROSTER MOVES:
On the eve of the Final Four, the White Sox made four moves affecting the Dash yesterday. The most relevant transaction was the addition of newly-signed corner infielder Jeremy Farrell. Farrell spent the last five years with Pittsburgh’s organization, where he climbed as far as Triple-A Indianapolis for eight games last April. Farrell joined the club yesterday, but he did not play last night and is not in the lineup tonight.
Also, the White Sox released infielder Nick Giarraputo and placed righty Andrew Brackman and outfielder Brady Shoemaker on the Dash’s disabled list. Shoemaker was a CL All-Star last year, and he is currently out in extended spring training.
PARITY IN THE CL:
It’s only one game, but Opening Night’s results brought about an interesting statistic: last season’s trio of bottom feeders (Carolina, Frederick and Potomac) collectively outscored its opposition 33-3 en route to emphatic season-opening victories. The only playoff team from 2012 to win last night was Myrtle Beach, and the Pelicans defeated fellow postseason qualifier Wilmington in extra innings.
2012 ALL-STARS SHINE:
It’s hard to believe that the All-Star Game took place at BB&T Ballpark more than nine months ago. Many players from that night have continued to shine, and a few have posted notable performances already in 2013:
- Salem alum Jackie Bradley, Jr., has reached in his first four games with Boston. The outfielder dazzled this spring to earn a spot on the big league roster. He has yet to play in Triple-A.
- The minors’ single-season stolen base king, Cincinnati farmhand Billy Hamilton, stole the first three bases of his Triple-A career Friday night for Louisville. Hamilton, who shined with High-A Bakersfield en route to Winston-Salem for last year’s Midsummer Classic, swiped an all-time record 155 bases a year ago.
- Southpaw Jack Snodgrass, who was San Jose’s lone All-Star representative last season, threw six of the seven innings of a no-hitter for Double-A Richmond Friday night. It was the first no-no in Flying Squirrels history.
A GOOD OMEN, PERHAPS:
The Dash lost last season’s opener by nine runs, too, and things ended up working out fairly well. Skipper Ryan Newman and company return to Five County Stadium tonight at 6:15 for game two of 140 in 2013, and the club will go with the same starting nine as last night (that lineup is here) along with righty Chris Bassitt on the hill.
Join me at 6 p.m. for the Pregame Dash here. I’ll talk to you then.
Baseball America released its Top 20 Prospects ranking for the Carolina League, and three men who donned the Dash purple this season made the list.
Infielder Carlos Sanchez placed sixth, which was the highest ranking for a Winston-Salem player. Righty Erik Johnson is 11th on the list, while outfielder Trayce Thompson checks in at 18th.
The 20-year-old Sanchez led all Carolina League qualifiers with a .315 batting average. In 92 games with the Dash, Sanchez scored 58 times and drove in another 42 runs. A member of the World Team in the 2012 MLB Futures Game, Sanchez earned promotions to Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte before the season ended.
Johnson joined the Dash July 21 and went 4-3 with a 2.74 earned run average in eight starts. He was the club’s Game 1 starter in their playoff run last month. Before his stint in Winston-Salem, the former California Golden Bear boasted a 2.30 ERA in nine efforts with Low-A Kannapolis.
Finally, Thompson slugged his way to a spot on this prestigious list. The former second-round pick finished tied for the league lead with 22 home runs, and he paced the circuit with 90 RBI. Like Sanchez, Thompson also made a stop in Double-A Birmingham before finishing the season with Triple-A Charlotte during its playoff run in the International League.
Only Salem and Myrtle Beach (four apiece) had more players on this list. Frederick’s Dylan Bundy finished atop the rankings, followed by a Salem triumvirate of Xander Bogaerts, Matt Barnes and Jackie Bradley, Jr. Myrtle’s Cody Buckel finished in fifth.
Interestingly enough, the only player on this list who never appeared in a game at BB&T Ballpark was Potomac’s Nathan Karns, who finished 15th overall.
Congrats to Carlos, Erik and Trayce!
PLEASE NOTE: These selections do NOT represent the award winners in the Carolina League. This is merely my opinion on the end-of-season awards.
The Carolina League’s end-of-season All-Star Team should be announced sometime this week, and it is a vote involving media members, general managers and skippers. Here are my best guesses, along with a few others who deserve mention (in alphabetical order).
CATCHER: Braeden Schlehuber (Lynchburg)
The All-Star reserve earns this spot, but it was one of the toughest ones to pick. Winston-Salem’s Mike Blanke made a late surge and certainly could get this spot.
Close calls: Mike Blanke (Winston-Salem), David Freitas (Potomac), Evan Gattis (Lynchburg)
FIRST BASE: Dan Black (Winston-Salem)
He won’t win the triple crown in the CL, but he will come closer than anyone else. The Big Black Bear has been one of the circuit’s most consistent hitters all season long.
Close calls: Chris Garcia (Lynchburg), Travis Shaw (Salem)
SECOND BASE: Carlos Sanchez (Winston-Salem)
It was embarrassing that Sanchez did not make the All-Star team, but this should be a nice consolation. That, and being in Triple-A Charlotte now.
Close call: Tommy La Stella (Lynchburg)
SHORTSTOP: Xander Bogaerts (Salem)
Boston’s second-best prospect is now a Portland SeaDog, but he was a force offensively in the Carolina League.
Close calls: Nick Ahmed (Lynchburg), Marcus Semien (Winston-Salem)
THIRD BASE: Michael Almanzar (Salem)
Almanzar needed a second season in High-A ball, but he improved greatly from year one.
Close calls: Giovanni Urshela (Carolina), Christian Villanueva (Myrtle Beach)
OUTFIELDERS: Jackie Bradley, Jr. (Salem), Brady Shoemaker (Winston-Salem) and Trayce Thompson (Winston-Salem)
Bradley, Jr., and Shoemaker were the CL’s two best players in the first half, and Thompson boasted the most gaudy numbers on the circuit.
Close calls: Michael Earley (Winston-Salem), Jeremy Nowak (Frederick)
UTILITY INFIELDER: Travis Shaw (Salem)
It was tough to pick among many great players for this final spot, but Shaw was a key cog in Salem’s huge first half.
Close calls: Jesus Aguilar (Carolina), Ronny Rodriguez (Carolina), Semien
UTILITY OUTFIELDER: Michael Earley (Winston-Salem)
Earley had a career year, and he definitely belongs somewhere on this list. He fits in well here.
Close calls: Kevin Keyes (Potomac), Nowak
DESIGNATED HITTER: Aaron Baker (Frederick)
With all of the great first basemen in the CL, Baker had to fight to get on this roster despite his big power numbers.
Close call: Jeremie Tice (Carolina)
STARTING PITCHER: Cody Buckel (Myrtle Beach)
Buckel’s 1.31 ERA in 13 starts was ridiculous, and he still places 14th in the CL in strikeouts despite playing in Double-A Frisco for much of the second half.
Close calls: Matt Barnes (Salem), Dylan Bundy (Frederick), J.R. Graham (Lynchburg), Gus Schlosser (Lynchburg)
RELIEF PITCHER: Ben Rowen (Myrtle Beach)
This was one of the tougher selections, but Rowen has been electric as a submarine specialist.
Close calls: Juan Jaime (Lynchburg), Mike Olmsted (Salem), Taylor Thompson (Winston-Salem)
MOST VALUABLE PLAYER: Brady Shoemaker (Winston-Salem)
Shoemaker carried the Dash past a loaded Salem squad in the first half. If he had been in the CL throughout the season, the Indiana State product could have posted some ridiculous numbers.
PITCHER OF THE YEAR: Cody Buckel (Myrtle Beach)
The numbers were just too good.
MANAGER OF THE YEAR: Tommy Thompson (Winston-Salem)
This isn’t even a conversation. If he isn’t the unanimous choice, voters don’t know what they are doing. Thompson has taken the Dash to the brink of minor league baseball’s best record despite significant turnover.
Agree? Disagree? Let me know.
But you have to like the fact that Winston-Salem paces the All-Star team with five representatives, plus the MVP and Manager of the Year.
The Carolina League All-Star break occurs at approximately the same time as multiple other leagues around the minors. Thus, it becomes a popular time for promotions. The Dash sent Spencer Arroyo, Daniel Wagner and Jake Oester up to Double-A Birmingham the day after the All-Star Break and received Blair Walters from Kannapolis. While the Dash did not lose any of their three All-Stars to promotion, the same wasn’t true for all representatives of the California-Carolina League All-Star Game. Here are a few of the big names who have recently departed the High-A level.
Cody Buckel- The Rangers called up the 20-year-old Buckel the day after he pitched a scoreless second inning for the Carolina League All-Stars. Their 2nd round pick in 2010 led the league in every major statistical category for a pitcher. He finished with a 5-3 record and a 1.31 ERA. Buckel also had 91 strikeouts and a WHIP of 0.98. He made his Double-A debut Sunday night but picked up the loss after allowing five hits and two runs in four innings.
Buckel is a good friend of Trevor Bauer, the Arizona Diamondbacks top pick in the 2011 draft. Bauer was called up to the big league club Sunday night and will be the first member of the 2011 class to make it to the majors when he makes his debut Thursday night against the Atlanta Braves.
Jackie Bradley, Jr.- To the relief of every Carolina League pitcher, Jackie Bradley, Jr., was called up to Double-A Portland. The Red Sox center fielder set the tone for Salem in the leadoff spot, going on to record league bests in batting average, doubles, on-base percentage and walks. In his first four games at the Double-A level Bradley Jr. is hitting .375 and has scored four runs. Outside of his offensive numbers, Bradley also has tremendous defensive range in center field.
Jeremie Tice- The Mudcats masher during the first-half of the season carried his big bat up to Double-A Akron. Tice was primarily a designated hitter for Carolina but spent a few games in left field and first base. In 52 games during the first half of the season, Tice hit .282 with 12 home runs, 47 RBI and a league-best slugging percentage of .580. In three games with Akron, Tice is hitting .417 with a homer and five RBI.
Sugar Ray Marimon- The former Wilmington right-hander punched his way into Double-A after compiling a 4-2 record and 2.12 ERA in nine starts. Marimon struck out 60 batters and walked 18 in 68 innings. He will make his debut for the Northwest Arkansas Naturals Monday afternoon.
A few players from the California League were selected as All-Stars but had already been promoted from their High-A clubs. Most notably, Tony Cingrani of the Cincinnati Reds organization was sent from Bakersfield to Double-A Pensacola after compiling a 5-1 record and 1.11 ERA in the notoriously hitter-friendly California League. Cingrani also struck out 71 batters in just 56 and two-thirds innings. Cingrani has made four starts with the Double-A Blue Wahoos, with his best coming against Birmingham on June 8 when he pitched six scoreless innings, striking out nine batters.
Mid-season promotions change the dynamic of a team but are a necessary part of minor league baseball. The Dash lost many pieces from a title-winning first-half team, but, for the moment their three All-Stars remain on the roster. With each of the Southern Division teams losing key members, the Dash could be in line to win the second half as well.
We are at the halfway point of the first half of the Carolina League season. Rain has disrupted the schedule to the point where teams have played anywhere from 33 to 36 games. With the Dash set to play games 35 and 36 on the schedule tonight, this edition of Dashing Around Baseball will primarily be a first-half report card, with my predictions for the first-half season champions thrown in. Of course, a look around the White Sox system is in here as well.
The Northern Division has shaken out into a distinct hierarchy. Lynchburg has a 6.5 game lead over second place in the division with the three other teams sitting below .500. Here’s how it looks for each team at the midway point.
Lynchburg- The Hillcats have a potent offense and sit behind only the Dash in runs scored, hits, home runs and RBI in the Carolina League. First baseman Nick Garcia is hitting .359 on the season with 23 RBI and three home runs. He made his mark on Winston-Salem pitching when the teams met last weekend, batting .455 with a home run and four RBI in the series.
Wilmington- The Blue Rocks have a 15-21 record, and that is good enough for second place in the division. Wilmington has the pieces to put together a run in the second half, but the team’s talent lies in its youth. If starting pitcher Yordano Ventura can replicate triple-digit radar gun outings and the offense starts hitting, the Blue Rocks will mount a run.
Potomac- The Nationals have been dealt a brutal hand with the injuries to its core players. Prodigious infielder Anthony Rendon has been out since injuring his ankle in the second game of the season. There appears to be a discrepancy between Rendon and the Nationals organization but one definite is that he will not be back for the rest of the first half of the season. Potomac certainly would have been a division favorite with Rendon in the fold.
Frederick- The Keys are seventh in the league in team batting and pitching (Potomac is last in both). To make up an 8.5 game deficit in 35 games is certainly doable, but Frederick has only had one stretch where it has won more than two games in a row all season, and that occurred during the first week of the season.
PREDICTION: Wilmington puts it together and challenges Lynchburg, but the Hillcats offense and favorable schedule (9 games against Frederick in the first two weeks of June) carries them to the first-half division title.
The Dash are the class of this division so far, but an extremely competitive division has kept all four teams in contention of winning the crown at the halfway point. Here’s a look at Winston-Salem’s challengers.
Salem-The Red Sox (1.5 games back of the Dash) offense has explosive capability led by Jackie Bradley Jr., who leads the Carolina League in batting average and on-base percentage. Salem’s Travis Shaw is second in the league with a .366 average. Matt Barnes, Boston’s top pick in 2011 made his High-A debut against the Dash on May 5. It went pretty well. How long Barnes stays with Salem is unknown, but he has the potential to grab a win every time he makes a start. The Red Sox and Dash play seven more games before the first half of the season comes to an end, with all of these games taking place in Salem.
Carolina- Even after losing Clayton Cook to the DL and T.J House to Double-A Akron, the Mudcats pitching staff contends with Myrtle Beach as the best pitching staff in the league. Carolina is 2.5 games out of the division lead, but starters Francisco Jimenez and Mike Rayl are in the top five of the league for lowest ERA. Closer Jose Flores has six saves to lead all active pitchers.
Myrtle Beach-The Pelicans can pitch, but they can’t hit. Cody Buckel has the lowest ERA and most strikeouts in the league. He anchors a Myrtle Beach rotation that has a team ERA of 3.o4, also the best mark in the league. With four games against the Dash this week, we’ll find out if the Pelicans are built to contend for the division.
PREDICTION: The division stays close until the end, when the Dash hang on for the crown due to seven games against Potomac and Wilmington to end the first-half of the season. Carolina and Salem each finish within two games of the title.
AROUND THE FARM
- Adam Dunn might be on his way to AL Comeback Player of the Year. It’s still early in the season, but Dunn already has hit 12 home runs, one more than he hit all of last season. 2010 Dash alum Addison Reed picked up his third save of the season in the 7-5 win.
- The Knights had a marathon evening last Wednesday night. Charlotte had two walk-off wins in a double-header, including a game one contest that went 14 innings.
- 2011 Dash alums Tyler Saladino and Jared Mitchell have led Birmingham to a 21-18 record, two games back of division-leading Jackson. Mitchell leads the Southern League in triples, while Saladino is batting .258 with 15 RBI and a league-leading 28 runs scored.
- Kannapolis has struggled this season, falling 10.5 games back of first-place Greensboro. White Sox 2011 top draft pick Keenyn Walker hit his first career home run Saturday night in a 2-1 win.
A bit of a lengthy recap, but thanks for Dashing Around Baseball today. The Dash play two tonight, starting at 6 against Myrtle Beach. Join us for the Pregame Dash starting at 5:45.