Archive for July, 2012

Claws Can Earn Split With Win Tonight

Thursday, July 26th, 2012

The BlueClaws finish up an eight-game road trip tonight in Hagerstown, and after dropping the first two games of the series, can earn a split of the trip and the series with a win tonight. RHP Moises Rivas takes the mound for the BlueClaws. First pitch is at 7:05.

Click here for today’s game notes.

What’s At Stake Today…The BlueClaws sit in third place in the Northern Division, tied with West Virginia and one game back of both Hagerstown and Hickory…The BlueClaws started the current road trip in a three-way tie with Hickory and Hagerstown for first place and have not yet held sole possession of first place in the second half, but have been tied for first in seven days…Their largest first-half deficit was 22 games behind eventual champion Greensboro…A win today means the BlueClaws split this series and the eight-game road trip.

Nice Game…Chris Duffy went 5-6 in Wednesday night’s game and in the process tied the BlueClaws franchise record for most hits in a game…He is the 7th person to reach that mark, the previous being Jiwan James in July of 2010 against Kannapolis…His fifth hit was his 10th home run of the year and came with two outs in the top of the 9th inning.

Top of the Table…BlueClaws 1B Chris Duffy leads the South Atlantic League in all three triple crown categories during the second half (beginning June 21st)…In the second half, he’s batting .397 with nine home runs and 39 RBIs in 33 games…Since Duffy’s 19-game hitting streak ended on July 3rd, he is 27-69 (.391) with two grand slams, 5 HRs, 23 RBIs, and 12 walks (17 games)…Since re-joining the BlueClaws on Memorial Day, Duffy is hitting .385 (69-179) with 49 RBIs in 49 games…He has been named Phillies Minor League Player of the Week in two of the last three weeks.

A Friendly July…Kelly Dugan entered July hitting .246 but has raised his average to .291 (highest since going 2-4 on Opening Day was .296 through July 21st)…In July, Dugan is 35-87 (.402) with 22 runs scored in 23 games…That average is the third best in the league during the current month behind West Virginia’s Greg Polanco, who is hitting .423…Dugan has 11 multi-hit games in July.

A Tale of Two Halves…3B Maikel Franco hit .207 with 27 RBIs in the first half and is now hitting .310 with 32 RBIs in the second half…Franco is Lakewood’s youngest regular and will not turn 20 until August 26th.

Four Pitches – From Jesse Biddle

Wednesday, July 25th, 2012

Cool article from MiLB.com in which Jesse Biddle, now with Clearwater and a 2011 BlueClaw, talks about his four pitch repertoire. Click here to read the full article. Here’s a snippet:

Pitch one: Four-seam fastball

Origin: That’s the first pitch every kid should learn how to throw. It’s the most important one. At Germantown Friends School in Philadelphia, I usually just threw that until hitters started hitting it and then I changed it up. The biggest thing as a pitcher — at least what the Phillies preach — is fastball command first and foremost. If you don’t have that, you’re not going to be successful.

Purpose: I probably throw 75 percent fastballs in a game and I don’t try to fool anybody, just get quick outs. It’s my go-to in any count, and I feel comfortable throwing it.

Read the whole thing. Well worth it.

Rained Out

Saturday, July 21st, 2012

The BlueClaws and Crawdads were rained out on Saturday night due to a torrential storm that knocked out both the game and a Selah concert schedule for after the game.

Double-header on Sunday starts at 3 pm. LHP Lino Martinez and RHP Gabriel Arias

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will start the two games for Lakewood.

Duffy Wins Player of Week, Again

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

BlueClaws 1B Chris Duffy has won Phillies Minor League Player of the Week for the second time in three weeks. Courtesy of Larry Shenk (read his Phillies Insider blog here).

Players of the We

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**Player: 1B Chris Duffy, Lakewood. Winner for the second time in the last three weeks. Last week: .458 average, club-high 11 hits, 9 RBI. Scored 5 runs. Has two grand slams this month, July 8 and last Saturday. 19-game hitting streak (.438) ended on July 3. Since then, .417 (15-36). Began season at Lakewood (.350, 7 games), went to Clearwater (.205, 20 games) and returned to BlueClaws on May 29. Since returning on Memorial Day, .390, 38 RBI, 40 games. The 24-year-old was selected in the 26th round in 2010 out of the University of Central Florida and signed by Chip Lawrence.

**Pitcher: RHR Tyler Knigge, Reading. Following promotion from Clearwater, make his AA debut on Thursday and got his first save there the next night. Allowed 1 hit, no runs, no walks in 2 innings and struck out 2. Two scoreless outings stretched his streak to 16 games, 18.2 innings, 24 strikeouts. Last run he allowed was May 29. Only other time he allowed a run was 2 on April 27. For the season, 4-1, 0.58 ERA, 36 games, 46.2 innings, 46 strikeouts, opponents batting .168. The 23-year-old was selected in the 12th round in 2010 out of Lewis-Clark State College (ID) and signed by Tim Kissner.

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Congrats to Anthony Gose

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

Congratulations to 2009 BlueClaws OF Antony Gose, who was called up today by the Blue Jays to replace the injured Jose Bautista.

Gose stole 76 bases, a franchise record, during the 2009 season and was one of the most exciting players in BlueClaws

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history. When he gets into a game, which could come tonight, he’ll become the 46th player to go From the Shore to the Show.

He’s also the only player in the last few years to list a fictional character as his favorite player as he did here with Willie Mays Hayes of Major League.

We have some old interviews with Gose here and here that are worth a listen and this Q&A from January of 2010 (part one, part two).

He started 2010 with Clearwater and was traded mid-season first to Houston (in the Roy Oswalt trade) and then flipped the same day to Toronto for 1B Brett Wallace, re-uniting him with Travis d’Arnaud, his teammate with the BlueClaws the year before (traded in the Roy Halladay trade).

The two won another championship in 2010 with Double-A New Hampshire, when Gose stole 70 more bases. He swiped 29 this year while hitting .294 with Triple-A Las Vegas.

We asked Gose about his 2009 season after he had a few months to look back:

What do you look back on, besides the championship, as the highlight of your season? Either the [76] stolen bases or the home run in the playoffs [bottom 1 of game 1 of the finals]. That was the furthest I’ve ever hit a ball [into the WRAT Trap in CF].

Congratulations again to Gose and good luck.

Duffy Named Topps SAL Player of June

Monday, July 9th, 2012

LAKEWOOD, NJ – BlueClaws 1B Chris Duffy was named Topps South Atlantic League Minor League Player of the Month for June. The award was announced by Minor League Baseball on Monday.

Duffy hit .420 in June (34-81) with three HRs and 19 RBIs. He re

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ached base safely in all 23 games he played in June and hit safely in all but three.

On June 19th, he began a 19-game hitting streak that lasted through July 3rd. The streak was the 3rd longest in BlueClaws history and Duffy went 32-73 (.438) over the hitting streak.

In June, he led the South Atlantic League in batting average (.420) and slugging percentage (.617), was second in on-base percentage (.479) and was third in RBIs (19).

Duffy was recently named Phillies Minor League Player of the Week (June 25-July 1) and Phillies Minor League Player of the Month for June.

He was drafted by the Phillies in the 26th round of the 2010 draft from the University of Central Florida, where as a senior he was a finalist for the Golden Spikes Award for the nation’s top amateur player.

Duffy is the first BlueClaws player to win this award since David Buchanan was named Minor League Player of the Month in May last year.

For the full release from Minor League Baseball, check below the fold.

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