Archive for April, 2009

More Twitter Notes

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

We’ve been pointing out to you guys periodically what we’ve done on Twitter and why you need to follow the BlueClaws Twitter page (here). Well, today, we kept it short and sweet:

First to respond to @blueclaws get 4 FREE tickets to a game May 5 – May 12…

The above appeared on the Twitter page around 3:30 this afternoon, and follows along with some other stuff we’ve done, including a gift of a baseball cap for anyone who printed out the page and brought it to the ballpark that day, and a free all-you-can-eat bracelet for those that printed out the page and brought it to a BlueClaws game later in the week.

Sort of along these lines, sort of…We’ll be hosting a new event, Nine Innings for Networking, coming up on May 28th (Thu) at the 6:35 pm game. In the OF picnic area, enjoy the game, get an all-you-can-eat buffet, and network with movers-and-shakers. Here is a flyer for the event, the first of its kind hosted by the BlueClaws.

Game 20: BlueClaws (11-8) at Hickory (10-10)

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

Welcome to LP Frans Stadium in Hickory, NC for tonight’s game between the BlueClaws and Hickory Crawdads. About set to get going here as they are turning the lights on bank by bank here the ballpark, which is situated up on a hill. The wind can really whip through here but today there is very little wind to speak of.

Game notes here. Audio here.

LWD- Jon Velasquez (4-0)
HIC- Richard Bleier (2-0)

7:00: They are starting the anthem now. First pitch moments away.

7:24: 1-0 Lakewood on a Jim Murphy single, driving in Harold Garcia.

7:32: HIC ties it at 1…RBI single from Matt West…They do all sorts of weird stuff here with the sound effects between pitches.  Kind of amusing. Wild west stuff mainly.

7:57: Extending the lead…the BlueClaws get a run on an E7 on a Valle base hit and another driven in by Villegas.

8:01: Great diving catch for Anthony Gose to end the bottom of the 4th after Collier ran about 50 yards to track down a fly ball earlier in the inning. These guys save runs, no question.

8:10: We are flying here…3-1 Lakewood already to the 6th inning. Velasquez looks good yet again…trying to become the first pitcher in the SAL to pick up 5 wins.

8:26: Jesus the Magnificent (Hey-soos)…Villegas a 2-run single…5-1 Lakewood.

8:43: Velasquez charged with two runs in the 6th so it’s now 5-3. He’s out, Tejeda in…JV can still get the W but now this is a ballgame again…5-3 Lakewood to the 7th.

9:00: Pretty double play started with a Garcia glove flip…to the 8th and it’s still 6-3 Lakewood.

9:19: Hickory scores a run off Tejeda’s lead-off walk…To the 9th…6-4 Lakewood…can the ‘Claws hold on?

9:24: Bergh stays in, he’ll go for the 6-out save…6-4 to the bottom of the 9th.

9:31: Game over…BlueClaws win 6-4.

9:38: Box score here.

We’re BAAAACK!!!

Thursday, April 30th, 2009

Sorry folks, after some brief technical difficulties, we are back in business here at BlueClaws Blog. Everything is squared away and we’re going to blog our you-know-what off.

We start, with today’s game notes.  

Enjoy, and have a Clawsome Day.

We’ll be back with a little bit more later on and then the game blog. First pitch is at 7:00 and you can listen here.

Hamilton’s Walk-Off Single Gives ‘Claws Win

Saturday, April 25th, 2009

Jeremy Hamilton, in the game after an injury to Harold Garcia, drove an RBI single into the LF corner in the ninth inning to break a 0-0 tie and give Lakewood a 1-0 win over Hagerstown, and a series sweep on Sunday at FirstEnergy Park.

Tyler Cloyd was excellent in the win, throwing seven shutout innings, though Ryan Bergh (1-1) picked up the win with two shutout innings of relief.

Box score here. Full recap below the fold.


Game 15: BlueClaws (8-6) vs Hagerstown (5-7)

Friday, April 24th, 2009

Back at FirstEnergy Park on a gorgeous Friday evening for the second of this three game series. Lakewood won the opener last night 6-2, just the third BlueClaws game this year not to be decided by two runs or less.

LAK: RHP Jon Velasquez (3-0)
HAG: RHP Terrence Engles (0-0)

6:15: Game notes here.

6:18: First pro start tonight for Velasquez, who signed out of Northwood University in the spring after being spotted at an Atlantic League tryout.

6:47: Jesus Sanchez on the pregame show…Audio here.

7:27: Great start for Lakewood…1-2-3 first and then four in the bottom for the BlueClaws…RBI double by d’Arnaud and an RBI single for Valle. 2-0 LWD.

7:37: Velasquez gets into and out of trouble…getting Curran to line out with the bases loaded to end the 2nd.

7:42: ‘Claws down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the 2nd…still 2-0 going to the third.

8:03: Still 2-0 Lakewood to the bottom of the 4th. Velasquez rolling right along.

8:10: Three zippos in a row for Engles…still 2-0 to the 5th. Velasquez has retired seven in a row for Lakewood.

8:27: d’Arnaud goes deep…4-0, still batting in the 5th.

8:29: RBI single for Villegas…now 5-0…blowout by BlueClaws standards…De Fratus in for JV.

8:34: After the BlueClaws struck out 18 in the game last night, up to seven tonight, including three in a row to start the frame for De Fratus.

8:45: Top of the 7th, De Fratus in there for Lakewood for his 2nd inning…Velasquez: 5 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K…he could get to 4-0.

8:49: De Fratus 1-2-3 inning…still 5-0. Lakewood pitchers have retired 15 Hagerstown hitters in a row…9 by JV and 6 for JDF.

9:01: Jesus Villegas, all he does is get hits, now 12-27 on the year, drives in one with an IF single…6-0 to the 8th.

9:06: JDF gives up a hit but gets through no problem…Just in…Harold Garcia’s two triples tie him with Michael Bourn for franchise single-game record. Garcia tripled to lead off both the 1st and 5th.

9:44: Jimenez threw the 9th…6-0 final score. Just three hits for Hagerstown and the BlueClaws’ third straight win for the first time this year…Now 9-6…4:05 Saturday…see you then.

BREAKING NEWS: Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, and John Mellencamp to Rock FirstEnergy Park

Friday, April 24th, 2009

We’ve been hinting at some breaking news for a few days, and we’re happy to break the news here…

Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson, and John Mellencamp will be playing a concert at FirstEnergy Park on Thursday, July 23rd. For Dylan and Nelson, it’s their second trip to FirstEnergy Park and it’s the first for Mellancamp.

Tickets for the show are $67.50 and go on sale through the BlueClaws and Ticketmaster on Saturday, May 2nd, at 12 pm. Enjoy.


Click here for the full release.


Friday, April 24th, 2009

Phillies Minor League pitching coordinator Gorm Heimueller has been in town this week, and he’s gotten to see some very good pitching, but the best start of all was turned in by Jason Knapp on Tuesday morning. Knapp went seven innings and did not allow a run while striking out 14, tying a franchise record.

Heimueller was certainly impressed, telling the Asbury Park Press that Knapp reminds him of a young Hamels.

“But in a different way,” Heimueller said. “Cole did it with a lot of changeups. Jason did it with his fastball and mixed in his other pitchers. I enjoyed watching it.

“He established his fastball, went after the hitters,” Heimueller said. “What I like, he mixes in some good changeups. Second or third time around in the order he threw his curveball. He’s blessed with a great arm. He’ll continue to get better and better.”

Knapp, who leads the league with 30 strikeouts, is 0-2 because the BlueClaws have only scored three runs in his starts. He next pitches on Monday at Delmarva.

Two Pre-Game Notes

Thursday, April 23rd, 2009

1) Remember, tomorrow at noon, we will have a MAJOR announcement regarding an upcoming concert at FirstEnergy Park. We’ll post it here, we’ll post it on Twitter, homepage, the whole thing. So be ready for that tomorrow at noon.

2) Tonight, sorry for the late blog notice, we’ll be doing our first Sleepy’s Broadcast in Bed. Josh Ellis and myself will be down on the concourse with all the play-by-play. So if you are coming to the game (Thirsty Thursday, $1.00 beer and soda in the WRAT Trap), feel free to stop by and say hello.

CJ Henry to Kansas (For Hoops)

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

Former BlueClaw (2006-07) CJ Henry, who the Phillies acquired in a 2006 trade for Bobby Abreu, will transfer from Memphis to Kansas to play basketball with his brother. The news was reported earlier today on Xavier (pronounced ZAHV-ee-ay) Henry is one of the top five high school basketball seniors in the country, and plays on the wing. CJ is expected to be a backup point guard for the Jayhawks next season.

Game 13: BlueClaws (6-6) vs Lake County (5-7)

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

Tarp is off the field. We’re on target for a 6:35 start, as scheduled. Lake County won yesterday 2-0 and the teams have split four games this year.

LWD: Rob Roth (0-0)
LCO: TJ House (0-0)

4:53: Game notes here.

5:48: Audio here at 6:20.

5:52: The BlueClaws have scored 10 runs in five home games this season and are hitting .188 at FirstEnergy Park. Meanwhile, they have scored 49 runs in seven road games, where they are batting .290.

6:46: Underway…Man at 2nd 1 out off Roth.

6:50: 1-0 LCO…Abreu now with half his hits on the year against Lakewood, an RBI single. Bottom 1.

7:08: Chris Nash had an RBI single yesterday, gets another in the 2nd inning…2-0 LCO.

7:16: Four Ks thru two for TJ House…2-0 to the 3rd.

7:26: Roth almost had a 1-2-3 inning, but with two strikes on Abner Abreu, he tripled to left field and came home on a Troy Hanzawa error…3-0 Captains, the BlueClaws need to find a way to score runs at home. Only 10 in 5+ games.

7:39: With one runner on and 2 outs the BlueClaws then had their biggest inning of the season at home. Four runs scored as ten batters came to the plate, highlighted by an Anthony Gose triple, a Travis d’Arnaud double and four walks…4-3 BlueClaws.

8:01: Martinez now in for LCO, has a 1-2-3 4th…Roth out for the 5th…4-3 BlueClaws.

8:10: Roth gets in and out of trouble in the 5th…walks the first two…gets through it after a SAC bunt and two pop-outs.

8:20: Now onto the 6th…still 4-3…LWD left a man in scoring position in the 5th. Roth still in.

8:27: 1-2-3 for Roth, who has settled down nicely…De Fratus now up…Bottom 6, still 4-3.

8:47: De Fratus…strikes out the side in the 7th…rain is coming down again…4-3 Lakewood at the stretch.

8:52: Lakewood threatening w/ 2 on / 1 out. Mattair walks again (18, leads MiLB).

9:08: d’Arnaud drove in two with a double…6-3 Lakewood to the bottom of the 8th.

9:16: Nothing in the 8th for Lakewood. BJ Rosenberg for his 2nd inning, to the 9th…6-3 ‘Claws.

9:28: Rosenberg allows two in the 9th but gets through it, striking out Donnie Webb to end the game. 6-5 final for Lakewood, now 7-6. Roth (1-0) gets the win, 6 IP, 3 R.

Knapp on ESPN’s Daily Prospect Update

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

BlueClaws pitcher Jason Knapp, who struck out 14 hitters over 7 shutout innings on Tuesday, was named as part of’s daily prospect update.

Sleeper alert!

Jason Knapp, RHP, Phillies (Low-A Lakewood)
Tuesday’s stats: 7 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 14 K
A second-round pick in June, Knapp was seen as a bit raw because of his New Jersey heritage, but his arm strength rivals anyone in the system, as his fastball has consistently been touching 97 mph this spring. Tuesday night’s start was the best of his career, but his first two weren’t so shabby, either, as in 18 1/3 innings for the BlueClaws, the 6-foot-5 righty has allowed only nine hits while striking out 30.

Phillies Minor League Review

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

This from Larry Shenk of Phillies Insider

Players of the Week
**Pitcher: LHP Yohan Flande, Clearwater.  In 2 starts, 2-0, 0.00 ERA, 12 innings, 10 hits, 3 walks, 9 strikeouts.  Pitched 5 shutout innings in April 13 start and 7 six days later.  The 23-year-old from the Dominican Republic was signed as an amateur free agent in 2004.  A year ago, he was 4-1 in the Gulf Coast League.

**Player:  1B Jim Murphy, Lakewood.  Led Phillies minor leaguers with a .424 average.  He collected 14 hits and 4 RBI in 9 games.  During a 6-game hitting streak (April 10-17), he had 5 multiple-hit games.  The 23-year-old was drafted in the 17th round a year ago out of Washington State University.  He hit a combined .281 while playing for the Gulf Coast League Phillies, Threshers and Crosscutters after signing a professional contract.

Lehigh Valley IronPigs
4-6, 5th place, International League North Division; won 4 of last 6  . . . 4th win a year ago came in 28th game . . . CF Rich Thompson hit .326, 14 hits, 6 RBI, 3 steals . . . OF Jeremy Slayden returned from the DL (back spasms) and hit .385 in 4 games, 3 of his 5 hits were extra-base hits . .. RJP Justin Lehr, 2-0, 1.59 for his first 2 starts . . . RHP Kyle Kendrick, 1-0, 1.64, 2 starts . . . RHP Carlos Carrasco, 0-0, 1.50, 2 starts.  Two earned runs on Thursday ended a string of 35.1 scoreless innings for Carlos at Coca-Cola Park, dating back to last season

Reading Phillies
6-3, 2nd place, Eastern League Southern Division . . . Ended with 3 straight wins . . . 1B Kevin Mahar, .385, 3 doubles, 5 RBI, 7 runs scored . . . C Kevin Nelson, .556, in 4 games . . . OF Mike Spidale, .500 in 10 at-bats . . . 2B Brad Harman fell a home run short of a cycle on Saturday . . . RHP Michael Stutes won his AA debut on Monday, throwing 5 no-hit innings before giving up 2 hits in the 6th; in 2 starts, 2-0, 2.45 ERA . . . LHP Joe Savery also won his AA debut with 8 strikeouts in 6-plus innings on April 10 . . . RHP Vance Worley won his first AA game in his second outing on Friday and hit a 2-run homer; no decision in April 11 debut, struck out the side in the third inning on 9 pitches . . . LHP Antonio Bastardo has been converted from a starter to a reliever, giving Reading 4 lefties in the pen; he joins Matt German, Sergio Escalona and Joshua Shortslef.  Combined they are 1-0 for 16 appearances, 28 strikeouts in 24 innings, 4 saves and 5 holds . . . Escalona recorded a 15-pitch, 1.1-inning save and a 44-pitch, 2-inning save . . . German struck out 13 in 7.1 innings (5 outings)  5 of his strikeouts came in a perfect 3-inning outing on Sunday.

Clearwater Threshers
6-4, tie 1st place, Florida State League North Division . . . OF Arlon Quiroz, .409 with 3 stolen bases . . . 3B Yonderman Rodriguez (.379) carried an 8-game hitting streak into this week . . . Fidel Hernandez, making a switch from shortstop to second base, hit in all 10 games and led the club with 13 hits while batting .361 . . . C Tim Kinnelly hit safely in 7 of his 8 stars and led the club with 5 doubles . . . 1B Matt Rizzotti got off to a hot start, 9-for-15, with 4 doubles in 6 RBI in four games . . . RHP Kyle Drabek was 2-0, 1.50 ERA, tossing 7 shutout innings in wining his second game on Wednesday . . . RHP Carlos Monasterio pitched a 3-hit, 7-inning shutout on Thursday . . . LHP Mike Zagurski, on the Phillies DL, made his debut with 1 scoreless inning on Friday.

Lakewood BlueClaws
6-5, tie 4th place, South Atlantic League Northern Division . . . CF Anthony Gose led organization with 9 stolen bases in 10 tries, including four in his last 2 games; he scored 9 runs in 10 games . . . 3B Travis Mattair  hit 303 and led all minor league players with 16 walks in 11 games; 10 of those walks came in 15 plate appearances over a 3-game span . . . Jason Knapp has 16 strikeouts in 11.1 innings but is 0-2 for 2 starts . . . RHP Jon Velasquez is 3-0 in 4 relief appearances.

Concert Announcement: Friday, noon

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

The Lakewood BlueClaws will be making a major announcement regarding a summer concert at FirstEnergy Park this coming Friday at noon. We’ll have it in all the big places, including here, the BlueClaws Facebook page, the BlueClaws Twitter page, and the homepage of

Friday, noon, major concert announcement, be there.

Jason Knapp Follow-Up

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

Jason Knapp, selected by the Phillies in the 2nd round of the 2008 draft, struck out 14 Lake County Captains this afternoon, tying a BlueClaws single-game record (Robinson Tejeda, 2001). Knapp went the first even, allowing just one hit, and left in a scoreless game which Lake County went onto win 2-0.

Some notes…

  • He struck out at least one hitter in every inning.
  • He struck out the side in both the 3rd and 4th.
  • At one point (3rd – 6th), seven straight outs, and nine out of ten, were recorded via the strikeout.
  • The BlueClaws have scored three runs in Knapp’s three starts this year.
  • He leads the SAL with 30 Ks in just 18.1 innings (14.7 per nine innings pitched).

And quotes

  • “I was on the same page with my catcher [Travis D’Arnaud], and felt like I had pretty good command,” said Knapp. “I had three pitches that were working for me, so that definitely helped. [Lake County] has a good lineup, and last time I faced them [April 15], they put some good swings on the ball and I gave up some runs. Today I came out on top more often than not.”