Scranton, 6 Durham 4. Mitch Talbot gave up 3 runs (1 earned) in 5.2 innings. He only struck out 2 and allowed 8 hits and 3 walks. Seth McClung was up to his old tricks. He walked 4 and gave up 2 runs in 1.1 innings. Jonny Gomes had a 3-run double and went 2-4. He is hitting .282-1-7 in 12 games. And how happy does Jonny look in his new Durham Bulls mugshot? Ben Zobrist was 2-3 but committed his 8th error in 26 games.
Mobile 6, Montgomery 5. Mike Prochaska continues to struggle at AA. Yesterday afternoon he gave up 6 runs in 4 innings. Reid Brignac and Evan Longoria each went 0-4. Brignac committed his 14th error. Longoria is 0 for his last 20. Jason Pridie was 2-5 and hit his 4th home run, a grand slam.
Vero Beach 6, Jupiter 2. Yesterday Jake McGee struck out 11 in 5.2 innings. His partner in crime Wade Davis one-upped McGee by striking out 13 in 6.2 innings last night. He allowed 2 hits and walked none. After allowing 2 hits in the first including a leadoff home run, Davis retired the next 13 batters in a row.
Columbus 9, Rome 2. Jeremy Hellickson did not allow a hit until a 1-out single in the 6th inning. It was the only hit he would allow in 6 innings. He struck out 5 and walked 3.
NOTES FROM DOWN ON THE FARM…
- David Ching of the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer wrote was supposed to be a feel-good piece about Desmond Jennings. Jennings, an outfielder at Columbus, was the Rays 10th round pick in 2006. He was named the Rays minor league player of the month for April and is 3rd in the SAL with 26 stolen bases. Ching writes about all the struggles that Jennings has overcome, including the recent death of his grandmother, whom Jennings refers to as his his best friend. But then Ching references other issues that Jennings had to overcome. First of all, Jennings originally signed to play wide receiver at Alabama, but he did not qualify academically, so he enrolled at a junior college. While at the JC, he faced charges (unspecified) that were eventually dropped…We don’t mean to pass judgement on Mr. Jennings. He may have been absolutely innocent in the court case and may be the greatest guy in the world, but how many players are the Rays going to draft and/or sign that have these character issues hanging over their heads. We understand taking a chance where others won’t and if it works out, the talent will exceed the price. But if you keep on knocking on the Devil’s door, eventually somebody is going to answer.
- Major League teams often keep career minor league catchers in their system, as it is the one position that is difficult to fill and regulars often are nicked up or hurt. These professional catchers often bounce from team to team and it is very common for one of these guys to play for three or four minor league teams in one season. These moves are based more on need by the individual teams than talent by the player. Josh Johnson is that guy for the Rays. Johnson, a Tampa native, has already been assigned to four different minor clubs this season and is currently the backup catcher in Durham. Johnson has even been used as a relief pitcher on several occasions. Mike Potter of the Durham Herald-Sun has an interview with Johnson and what it is like to be the Rays professional catcher.