Results tagged ‘ Nick Ahmed ’
The White Sox first spring training game is in 30 days. Robin Ventura’s crew will suit up for the first time Saturday, February 23, at 3:05 p.m. EST against the Dodgers, their stadium-mates at Camelback Ranch.
As Winston-Salem prepares for another winter storm tomorrow, it is nice to know that baseball is within grasp, even if the first true taste will be more than 2,000 miles away from the Triad.
Here are a few more notes to appease your baseball craving:
- BB&T Ballpark is the home of Winston-Salem State University baseball in 2013, so the first game at the stadium this season will be February 8. The Rams will play all 26 home games at BB&T Ballpark.
- Winston-Salem will not have a chance to watch a former five-star football recruit play for the Dash in 2013. Mitch Mustain, who played college football for Arkansas and USC before trying out pitching, was released by the White Sox, that according to Baseball America. Mustain climbed as high as Low-A Kannapolis after Chicago inked him to a deal last February. Between his time with the Intimidators and rookie-level Bristol, the righty was 2-2 with a 4.63 earned run average in 19 relief appearances.
- We all saw speedster Billy Hamilton in last year’s All-Star Game at BB&T Ballpark. Hamilton, who set the single-season stolen base record in minor league baseball, will start 2013 with Triple-A Louisville. If he is still in the International League, Hamilton will be in Charlotte to take on the White Sox Triple-A affiliate May 14-17.
- The Braves traded for Arizona outfielder Justin Upton earlier today, and the Diamondbacks received 2012 Lynchburg shortstop Nick Ahmed. A midseason All-Star, Ahmed paced the Carolina League with 40 stolen bases.
- Finally, some CL flavor is officially reaching the NBA. New Orleans will unveil its new Pelicans nickname, along with the logo and color scheme, at a press conference later today. How will Myrtle Beach respond?
The home opener is getting closer and closer! Can’t wait for baseball.
This is the first installment of the “Dash Top 10,” where we rehash the top 10 moments from the Dash’s historic 2012 season. Stay tuned to the Dash Board Blog for the rest of the series over the next two weeks.
Moment #10 (August 30): Keenyn Walker’s dazzling double play clinches the second-half Southern Division title for Winston-Salem.
The Dash put together one of the best seasons in Winston-Salem history, and they finished off a “clean sweep” in the regular season with a second-half championship.
The way Winston-Salem clinched that Southern Division crown was remarkable and worthy of inclusion on our year-end Top 10 list. It was the penultimate home game of the season, and the Dash held a 5-4 advantage over Lynchburg with one down in the top of the ninth. With Dan Brewer at first, Nick Ahmed crushed a ball to deep left-center. However, Keenyn Walker made one of the best defensive plays of 2012 for the final two outs of the game:
Winston-Salem skipper Tommy Thompson called it one of the best plays he has seen in person during his long baseball career, and it was an incredible way to end the chase for back-to-back division crowns.
Sure, the Dash already had a playoff spot locked up when Walker helped Winston track down the second-half Southern Division title, but Thompson and the rest of Winston’s clubhouse wanted to finish what they started. They certainly did it with a fantastic play to cap off the crown.
Stay tuned for our ninth-best moment from the regular season, which involves one of the most stunning comebacks in the Carolina League in 2012. Talk to you then.
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.
Southern Division Championship Series
Myrtle Beach Pelicans at Winston-Salem Dash
Thursday, September 6 — 7:00 p.m.
Game 2 — Pelicans lead series 1-0
GAME 1 BACKGROUND:
The Dash face elimination tonight at BB&T Ballpark in Game 2 of the SDCS against Myrtle Beach. The Pelicans plated four runs in the top of the sixth and held Winston-Salem to just one run, a Courtney Hawkins solo shot in the fifth, on five base hits. As a result, Winston must win to avoid its sixth playoff series loss in its last eight tries, while Myrtle Beach is a win away from the franchise’s first Mills Cup Championship Series appearance since 2008.
Winston-Salem — LHP Scott Snodgress (4-0, 1.50 ERA): Winston-Salem turns to Snodgress with its season on the line. Snodgress has turned in five quality starts in his eight outings with the Dash, and he has not allowed an earned run in five of his games. In two starts against the Pelicans, Snodgress has given up just one unearned run on seven hits over 12 innings. A fifth-round pick in 2011, Snodgress whiffed 14 batters in those two outings.
Myrtle Beach — RHP Joe Van Meter (4-5, 2.06 ERA): A reliever for the season’s first four months, Van Meter has made eight starts and is 3-2 with a 2.41 ERA in those efforts. Van Meter, who had a brief stint in Double-A Frisco during the regular season, strikes out about one batter per inning. In his penultimate outing of the regular season and his only start against Winston-Salem, the Glen Allen, Va., native surrendered two runs on six hits in six innings August 26.
- Winston-Salem dished out nine sweeps in the regular season, but no Carolina League club was able to accomplish the feat when squaring off with the Dash. Winston faced a possible sweep five times during the season, but the squad went 5-0 in those games and outscored its opposition 37-16, which is an average score of 7.4-3.2 in such situations. The Dash face a possible playoff sweep tonight.
- Wednesday’s starter Erik Johnson twirled a no-hitter until the final out of the sixth inning, which matched the longest no-hit bid by a Winston-Salem starter this season.
- Since Winston-Salem won the 2003 Carolina League crown, the franchise has played in four elimination games. Winston is 0-4 in those games, with the combined score sitting at 22-11. This is the first elimination game in Winston-Salem since September 6, 2008, when Myrtle ended the Warthogs season with an 11-5 victory.
- Outside of Daniel Wagner’s 2-for-2, two-walk night, no Winston whacker reached base more than once Wednesday night. Excepting Hawkins’ home run, the Dash did not get a runner to third base. Myrtle Beach’s pitching quartet whiffed 10 men during the contest, while the Dash stranded seven runners, four of which were in scoring position.
- Dash outfielder Courtney Hawkins hit his second High-A home run in the fifth inning of Wednesday’s game. Including his regular season work, Chicago’s top pick in June is 6-for-21 (.286) with a pair of long balls and three RBI in Winston-Salem. Hawkins is the youngest player to compete in the CL this season (18 years, nine months, 25 days).
- Myrtle Beach plated four runs in the sixth inning in Game 1 after the Pelicans only scored more than four runs in five regular season games against the Dash this season. In these two squads previous two meetings (August 26 and last night), the Pelicans have surged past the Dash thanks to a four-run frame late in the contest.
AN EYE ON THE NDCS:
Lynchburg seized a 1-0 lead in the Northern Division Championship Series with an 8-0 win in Wilmington Wednesday. Carolina League Pitcher of the Year Gus Schlosser blanked the Blue Rocks over eight innings, while the Hillcats plated two in the eighth and four more in the ninth to pull away. Tommy La Stella drove in three runs, while fellow midseason All-Star Nick Ahmed plated a pair.
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 6:40 p.m. and features a chat with Dash skipper Tommy Thompson and a look back at Game 1.