Sunday, July 13, 2014

7/13/2014 Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 5, Louisville Bats 2

Louisville Slugger Field, Louisville, KY
Game 4 of 4

This game wasn't on my schedule, but as I had no Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs games this season and I had a couple of tickets to redeem, I chose this one because...well, it's the Iron Pigs!! Too bad it wasn't a Saturday, or I could have worn by Saturday Bacon cap...but Sunday was the only redemption date available for the Iron Pigs series.
And yes, that's Sean O'Sullivan, appearing in the game as a Pinch Hitter, against Ryan Dennick! It's the second time this season O'Sullivan has been used as a pinch hitter (the first time was in May, and he struck out). O'Sullivan walked in the 8th, but in the 6th (same spot in the order) former Diamondbacks and Angels farmhand RHP Barry Enright also made a pinch-hitting appearance, flying out to center field to end the inning.

Enright was released by the Phillies just a few days later. He was one of my early baseball player twitter follows.

The Iron Pigs had former Bats LHP Jeremy Horst starting today (Horst was traded by the Reds in early 2012 for Wilson Valdez, 2 years later he's nearly faded away, but not quite). Fun fact: jason Marquis was originally scheduled to start! The Bats struck early, with a leadoff double by Hernan Iribarren, and RBI triple by Thomas Neal, and an RBI groudount by Felix Perez.  Mysteriously, Horst only lasted 3 innings, and was replaced by Ethan Martin. For the Bats, David Holmberg started and quite unexpectedly went 5 excellent innings, only allowing one earned run, and left the game with Louisville enjoying a slight lead of 2-1.

Enter Pedro VillaERAreal, who quite expectedly allowed 3 ER in 1.1 innings to give the Iron Pigs a lead that the Bats couldn't reverse. LHP Ryan Dennick gave up one more run in the top of the 9th, courtesy of a SAC fly RBI by Darin Ruf (his 2nd RBI of the game), but the Bats went in order against RHP Luis Garcia in the bottom of the 9th and lost the game with a whimper.

I went solo today, so I got to hang out with our pal Jimmy, who sits in the row in front of us. I'm squinting because THE SUN that's why.
Jimmy and I usually chat on and off during games, but this is the first time since I've been coming here, in these seats, that I've had the opportunity to converse with Jimmy alone. He's one of my favorite people to talk baseball with...Jimmy's understanding of the game and the players who come through these parts is incredible. He should be a scout!!

RHP Ethan Martin faces switch hitting SS Rey Navarro in the 4th inning. Martin is listed as #7 among the Phillies' top 10 prospects.

Navarro flies out to LF Darin Ruf

Martin vs. RF Steve Selsky in the 4th. Selsky is a relative newcomer to the Louisville squad, who is hitting .298/.431/.383 in 19 games.

Louisville LHP David Holmberg, holding his own for now but at the age of 22 he still needs some seasoning, facing Darin Ruf in the 5th inning.

Prior to Ruf's AB, Lehigh Valley 2B Tyler Henson walked and is being held at 1B by Bryan Anderson.

Holmberg's pick-off throw to Anderson...Henson beats it.

Ryan Dennick faces Iron Pigs 3B Russ Canzler in the 9th; again Tyler Henson is at first. Canzler is another International League stalwart who'm I've seen plenty over the years and often with a different team each time (Durham 2001, Columbus 2012, Norfolk and Indianapolis 2013, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and Lehigh Valley 2014). Canzler hits a chopper to Navarro...

Navarro fields the ball...

...makes the toss to 2B Hernan Iribarren...

...who fields it to Anderson, a 6-4-3 inning ending twin killing!!

SCOREKEEPER'S NOTE: This is one of those games where 3 slots for each player in the batting order just isn't enough. With the Iron Pigs pinch-hitting in the #6 spot twice by the top of the 8th inning, another substitution was made in the bottom of the 8th. So where does that 4th man go?
If you are using my customized scoresheets, then you've noticed by now that there are two "open slots" underneath the slots allocated for the #9 batter. They are seldom used, and often under-appreciated, but this is a situation where you can show them some love.  As Nate Spears comes into the game, playing 2B, and in O'Sullivan's spot in the batting order, just enter that info into the first of those 2 open slots, and jot down the batting order number to the left:
Life is good!!!

My Mystery Rookie Card pick was this 2004 Topps Matt Bush #T71. Bush was the 1st overall pick in the 2004 draft by the Padres, out of Mission Bay HS in San Diego.  
The Padres had been infamous for picking "busted" shortstops in the first round, and in 2006 Baseball Prospectus projected that Bush (who was also a pitcher) would continue the tradition. Bush spent most of his early years beset by injuries (including Tommy John surgery in 2008), and developed a bad reputation as a heavy drinker, bar fighter, and the subject of many assault incidents. He was DFA'd in early 2009, and picked up by the Blue Jays in February of that year, who notoriously installed a "zero tolerance" policy for his behavior...a policy that took Bush only just over a month to violate, as the Blue Jays released him on March 30th after he threw a baseball at a woman's head during an altercation. The Tampa Bay Rays signed him to a Minor League deal in 2010, but the injuries again became a problem and eventually Bush's behavior would seal his fate. In March of 2012, Bush ran over and nearly killed a 72-year old man in Port Charlotte, FL (while driving Brandon Guyer's car!) and faced multiple DUI and felony injury charges, for which he would receive a 4-year prison sentence. He'll be released in the summer of 2016. It will be difficult for anyone to top Matt Bush's claim to fame as the Biggest 1st-Round Bust in Baseball History.

Well, that was depressing...but HEY!! I picked up a few more Astros cards!!!

2013 Bowman Chrome George Springer #TP-20, 2013 Bowman Platinum #BPP38 (same pic, still #sexy), and this stellar 2014 Topps Jose Altuve #210, numbered 50 out of 63!

2014 Topps Jarred Cosart #89, this FINE looking 2012 Bowman Sterling Jon Singleton AUTO #BSAP-JS, and 2013 Bowman Platinum Jon Singleton #BPCP24 round out today's hauls!

My scoresheets, using my new pitch-counting method! Read about it HERE, download the scoresheets for free HERE!

Official Program (featuring Tucker Barnhart) and Scorecard

My actual game ticket...

...and this is the Ticket that I swapped, featuring Josh Fellhauer, a fan favorite here last year who only appeared in 9 games in Louisville this season, was demoted to AA Pensacola early on, and is currently with the Milwaukee Brewers system in AA Huntsville.

Bat Chat and Gameday Stats

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