Gwinnett Braves 3; Durham Bulls 0 (11 innings)
Wrap, Box, Herald-Sun, Indy Week, Examiner
Of all the relief pitchers on this year's Durham Bulls roster, the last guy I'd expect to have trouble is Dane De La Rosa, but that's what happened last night. Things unraveled for him in the top of the 11th.
Of course, if things had gone better he would not have been on the mound in the 11th inning. The Bulls loaded the bases in the 5th and again in the 9th, but could not get a run across. Both times young Tim Beckham was the goat. However, Mr. Beckham has at least gotten a couple of hits in these two games. The Bulls have five batters (out of nine position players) waiting for their first hit — Miranda, Guyer, Feliciano, Salazar, and O'Malley. Not one Bull has gotten an extra base hit.
In the long run, however, this could be a team that's death on right-hand pitchers. Last night's starting lineup had six players batting left-handed.
Alex Torres had the start last night and for three innings he looked terrific. And then he started throwing a lot of pitches per batter, walking two of them and the fifth began no better. I haven't dusted off my efficiency stat for this year yet, but his 94 pitches to 18 batters (5.2) won't look good. On the other hand, he did get 7 K's. For a more in-depth look, see the Indy Week article at link above.
We got to see Marquis Fleming for the first time. His brief visit to the Bulls last year was at an away game. He's going to be fun to watch.
Kyle Hudson is 6 for 8, all singles. He is another player that will be fun to watch this year. Hudson was acquired from the Rangers just few days ago, but he came up through the Baltimore system and spent some time with the Norfolk Tides last year. To be honest, I don't recall him. But looking through some old scoresheets I see he was a leadoff batter in a game last August and struck out a lot. He's young. He's fast. Not sure why the Rangers let him go except that they owed the Rays a ballplayer from an earlier deal.
Outside the game:
- The Rays won their opener in walkoff fashion beating the Yankees 7-6. Recent Bull Stephen Vogt got his first major league at-bat, pinch-hitting for former Bull Elliot Johnson in the 8th inning. He struck out.
- I'm often asked how much AAA ballplayers make. The answer is, usually, "I don't know." But if Rays Index is correct, a player on the Rays 40-man is making at least $78,000.
- The Biscuits beat the Blue Wahoos (the former Mudcats — what kind of name is Blue Wahoos?) 9-3 last night.