The Atlantic League Bullpen, August 23, 2022
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Pennant Races: Gastonia continues to hold a 7.5 game lead over Kentucky in the South after going 4-2 last week... Lancaster holds a 2.5 game lead over So. Maryland but the Barnstormers are also in the thick of the Wild Card race... High Point holds a half-game lead over the Wild Health Genomes in the Wild Card race with Lancaster just 1.5 games back and Long Island within striking distance at 3.5 games behind... Long Island will visit Lancaster in a mid-week series that will have playoff implications for both clubs in the second half.
First Half-Week Standouts: York’s Lenin Rodriguez had three hits, two homers and five RBI in a win over Lancaster on 8/16… Charleston’s Kit Scheetz fanned six in three innings vs. High Point (8/16)… Kentucky’s Max Povse had nine strikeouts in six innings vs. Lexington on 8/16… Long Island’s Deibinson Romero drove in four runs vs. Staten Island (8/18)… Staten Island’s Justin O’Conner drove in five vs. Long Island 8/18… High Point’s Mickey Jannis fanned eight in four innings of relief vs. Charleston (8/18)… Gastonia’s Luis Roman was 6-for-11 in the series vs. So. Maryland… John Anderson of Gastonia carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning vs. So. Maryland (8/17)… Gastonia’s Dakota Chalmers struck out seven So. Maryland hitters in five innings (8/18)… York’s Melky Mesa hit a three-run homer and threw out a runner at the plate vs. Lancaster 8/18.
Second Half-Week Standouts: Charleston’s Nick Heath was 4-for-4 with five RBI vs. Lancaster (8/19)… Long Island’s Tzu-Wei Lin had three-doubles vs. YRK (8/20)… Lexington’s Dakota Freese faced his former Staten Island team on 8/20 and struck out six and allowed just three hits over six innings… Lancaster’s Jake Hoover had four hits vs. Charleston (8/20)… Alex Merithew of So. Maryland held the Wild Health Genomes to four hits over seven innings while striking out eight (8/20)… Long Island’s Deibinson Romero had four RBI vs. York on 8/21 on a pair of RBI singles and a two-run homer…York’s Josue Herrera had five RBI including a grand slam vs. Long Island (8/21)… Kentucky’s Max Povse fanned 10 in 6.2 innings while yielding just one hit vs. So. Maryland (8/21)… Jerry Downs of High Point had two homers and four runs scored vs. Gastonia on 8/21… Gastonia’s Ian McKinney fanned eight in five innings vs. High Point (8/21)… Gastonia’s Zach Jarrett was 8-for-13 in the series vs. HP with three HR and six RBI… Staten island’s Victor Capellan had two saves vs. Lexington over the weekend… Long Island’s Deibinson Romero was 6-for-10 vs. York with seven RBI… Newly-acquired Gastonia pitcher Alex Sanabia allowed just two hits over six shutout innings vs. High Point on 8/19… Long Island’s Akeel Morris yielded just three hits over six innings vs. York (8/19)… The Ducks’ Joe DeCarlo had four hits vs. York (8/21)… Lancaster’s Oscar De La Cruz threw seven shutout innings and fanned nine vs. Charleston (8/21).
Best of the Week: High Point’s Quincy Latimore and Long Island’s Deibinson Romero led the league over the past week with 11 RBI apiece... The Rockers’ Roldani Baldwin and Quincy Latimore along with Gastonia’s Zach Jarrett each hit three homers over the last six games... Jarrett led the league with 13 hits last week... Staten Island’s Justin O’Conner was 7-for-14 with two doubles and a homer to post a league-best 1.071 slugging percentage and a 1.659 OPS... O’Conner, High Point’s Giovanny Alfonzo (10-for-20) and Gastonia’s Zach Jarrett (13-for-26) all hit .500 for the week... Kentucky’s Max Povse struck out 19 over two starts covering 12.2 innings.
Long At-Bats: Lexington’s Pete Yorgen grounded out to short after 11 pitches from Kentucky’s Ryan Kellogg (8/18)… High Point’s Ben Aklinski walked on 11 pitches from Gastonia’s Quintin Torres-Costa (8/19).
Team Pitching: Gastonia pitchers fanned 16 Blue Crabs (8/18)… Three High Point pitchers held Charleston to three hits (8/18)… Four Lancaster pitchers held Charleston to just one hit in a 6-2 win on 8/20 and retired the final 21 hitters in order… Three Kentucky pitchers combined to throw a three-hitter while striking out 14 vs. So. Maryland (8/21).
Team Hitting: Eight Staten Island hitters each had multiple hits vs. Long Island 8/18… Four different Gastonia players each had three hits vs. High Point (8/19)… High Point’s seven HR vs. Gastonia on 8/21 was a club record and the most by an ALPB team this season… Charleston trailed Lancaster 4-0 with two outs (and a 2-2 count) in the bottom of the ninth before forcing extra innings and winning 5-4 in the 10th on 8/21.
Pitching Gems: When Southern Maryland’s Endrys Briceno allowed an earned run vs. Kentucky on 8/19, it marked the first time he had done so since 6/9, a span of 21 appearances and 24.1 innings.
Streaks: Gastonia’s Zach Jarrett has multiple hits in four straight games… Jarrett has also homered in three straight, one off the league-high for the season… Southern Maryland’s Jack Sundberg owns the league’s longest active on-base streak at 24 consecutive games while Long Island’s Phil Caulfield is one behind.
League Leaders: Long Island’s Alejandro De Aza continues to lead the league with a .339 batting average… Courtney Hawkins tops the loop with 35 home runs while Lancaster’s Andretty Cordero has moved into the RBI lead with 96… So. Maryland’s Daryl Thompson continues to lead the league with 12 wins and Mat Latos is on top with 24 saves… So. Maryland’s Mitch Lambson has six complete games, the most by an Atlantic League pitcher since New Britain’s Kyle Simon in 2017.
ALPB Milestones: Long Island’s Lew Ford is just two hits shy of 1,000 for his Atlantic League career. He would be just the fourth Atlantic League player to eclipse the 1,000-hit mark. Ford is also sitting on 495 RBI which would make him the sixth player to reach that plateau... Gastonia has 263 stolen bases this year, three shy of breaking the league record of 265 set by the Somerset Patriots in 2000 in 140 games…LEX’s Courney Hawkins 35 homers rank as the fourth-most in a season by an ALPB player.
Anomalies: The Wild Health Genomes suffered four straight one-run losses between 8/16 and 8/19 with three of them coming in the opponent’s final at-bat... Charleston turned a 4-3 triple play against Lancaster (8/20).
Grand Slams: Long Island’s Deibinson Romero vs. Staten Island (8/18)… Luke Becker of Kentucky vs. Southern Maryland (8/19)… There were three grand slams in a single game on 8/21. Long Island’s Vladimir Frias and Anfernee Seymour hit blasts for the Ducks while Josue Herrera hit one for York.
Walk-Offs: Lexington walked-off Kentucky in back-to-back games on 8/16 and 8/17. The first night, it was a 7-6 win on a 10th inning Manuel Geraldo single. The next night, the Legends scored twice in the bottom of the 10th for a 4-3 win on Trey Hunt’s single… Devin Torrence singled to walk-off his former Lancaster teammates 5-4 in 10 innings on 8/21… Southern Maryland posted an 8-7 walk-off win over Kentucky (8/19) on Michael Baca’s sac fly.
Off-Field: Gastonia drew its two largest home crowds of the season over the weekend with 3,495 on hand on 8/19 and 3,033 on 8/20.
Team Marks: Southern Maryland has been hit by pitch 98 times, the second-most ever by an ALPB club… York became the fifth team in ALPB history to win 1,000 games with a 5-4 win over Lancaster on 8/18... HP’s Quincy Latimore set the club record for career HR with his 44th on 8/21… So. Maryland’s Jack Sundberg broke the Blue Crabs record for stolen bases in a season when he swiped his 37th on 8/20 vs. the Genomes.
Celebrating Ricardo Gomez: Ricardo Gomez joined the Charleston Dirty Birds in late July and has made 12 appearances . . . At age 44, Gomez has been playing professionally since 1997 when he debuted with the Pirates’ Gulf Coast Rookie League team... He spent two years in the Pirates organization and two seasons as a Yankee farmhand but has played in unaffiliated leagues since 2007… When he relieved at Long Island on 8/13, it marked his 375th all-time appearance in the Atlantic League, breaking the career mark of 374 held by current Lancaster manager Ross Peeples... Gomez has made 12 appearances this season and his career mark has reached 378... Gomez was on the 2012 ALPB Postseason All-Star team as the second team reliever and has collected a career mark of 31-18 with 37 saves and a career 3.36 ERA... Gomez has pitched for Lancaster, Long Island, York, Sugar Land and now Charleston in the ALPB... He has been a part of two ALPB Championship teams with York in 2011 and 2017,
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