Thoughts and pictures of my local minor league baseball team the New York Penn League Connecticut Tigers; a Detriot farm team. We'll still be looking at former Navigators/Defenders players along the way....

Sunday, April 29, 2007

RockCats avoid sweep and beat Connecticut 3-1

in a fast paced game today. Bumped into my ex-neighbor and his son out in the parking lot. He spent the day recounting for me his days as an extra on the set of the ESPN movie "The Bronx is burning" filmed at Dodd and other local locations. He's in about 4 or 5 scenes and his son is also in one. Very interesting stuff.

The scoring was also fast paced as the RockCats took advantage of Garrett Broshuis' one bad inning in the top of the second. Brian Buscher, who continues to destroy his old team, lead off with a double and next batter goes yard for a 2-0 lead. Next batter doubles and comes around on a single for the Rockcats' three runs.

Defs got their only run in the third on a Todd Jennings (2 for 4) double and a Pat Dobson single.

Garrett had that one bad inning but pitched well giving up 6 hits (4 in that one inning) with 4 Ks and no BBs as his ERA falls to 3.86. Justin Hendrick pitched the final three innings and is pitching to a 0.00 ERA after 12 IP so far this year.

Misc fan notes: Jake Wald batted at the top of the order for the second straight game.

EME was the DH getting a day off from the field. Pat Dobson started in CF and later moved to 2B after Trey Webb was pitch hit for.

With a Altoona coming in, a NL team affiliate, and no DH I'm wondering how much of Trey Webb (0 for 29) we will see over the next three games.

Simon Klink's 7 game hitting streak was broken today.

Brian Horwitz's infield hit in the eight yesterday

bang bang play at first.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Send Chris Begg to Fresno now......

He's got nothing left to prove here. Yes I know he didn't do well last time up but that was then and this is now.
He killed the RockCats today pitching 7 innings, 6 hits allowed, 6 Ks, no runs and no walks. That makes 14 innings in the last 7 days against New Britain without giving up a run and about 20+ straight shut out innings over the last three starts. Chris is 2-0 with a 2.10 ERA now. Bring up Adam Cowart and see what he's all about.

This was an easy 6-1 Defender victory. Brian Horwitz goes 3-5 (2B, 2R, now at .371), Simon Klink 3 for 4, .327 and John Bowker 2 for 4, .309 were the hitting stars. RockCats gave up 4 easy runs in the first and with Begg on the mound that's all she wrote. Jeff Petersen pitched the final two innings.

Misc fan nots: I have a vidclip of Hortwitz getting an infield hit in the 8th I'll post on Sunday. Brian hit one deep in the left center power alley I'm sure would have been out in some parks.

Jake Wald batted leadoff and got the 4 run first going with a lead off walk.He later picked up a RBI. He might not hit much but Jake's got a nice glove out there especially with a ground ball pitcher like Begg on the hill.

A 4:05 start for the game (a first) didn't seem to add to the crowd total.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Travis goes yard click on..

EME stikes out and Travis hits the first Defender HR at home this season. They were both facing a righty pitcher as I had got use to watching Floyd work.

Connecticut wins 5-2 over New Britain tonight...

in a game I didn't think they would get in as it rained most of the day. I got to the park in the bottom of the second with the Defs behind 1-0. A Travis Ishikawa walk, a single by Simon Klink and a Jake Wald RBI double would tie the score and then Trey Webb hit a grounder to the first baseman who threw to former Defender pitcher Jesse Floyd covering first. Floyd looked for the bag before getting the ball and dropped the throw allowing both runners to score for a 3-1 Defender lead.

The RockCats would come back the next inning and get a run back on a Brian Buscher RBI groundout; his second RBI of the game as he continues to haunt his old team mates this season.

Brook McNiven took over in relief in the sixth from starter Darren Sack (5 IP, 5 H, 2 unearned runs, 3 Ks) and pitched 2 shut out innings. In the bottom of the sixth after a Brian Horwitz walk, Travis Ishikawa hit a two run homer for a 5-2 Connecticut lead. Alex Hinshaw came on and pitched a scoreless eighth inning.

Brian Anderson came on in the ninth to close. He made it interesting loading up the bases with one out on a walk, single and another walk before getting a stikeout for the second out and a grounder fot the final out and his third save so far.

Misc fan notes: The game started 15 minutes late because of conditions. Small crowd maybe 750 but loud, alot of kids on hand because of Friday fireworks. Fireworks were rained out so everyone in the park got a free ticket to another Friday Firework game for anytime in the 2007 season. Class move by the front office.

Pat Dobson started his first game in the outfield patrolling center field and looked OK. Travis' HR was the first at home for the Defenders this season--a solid shot to right field. This was the first time I've seen McNiven pitch; he has nice stuff. Klink's hitting streak continues; I'm beginning to like him. Def manager Dave Mac, coaching in the third base box, and former Navigator/Defender 3B Brian Buscher had a running conversion all game.
Anderson is scary as a closer.

Newspaper road coverage was a recent topic here

on the blog. Good to see a Mach quote from the road re: last night's game.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Thunder beat Defs again 2-1 tonight in Trenton...

for their sixth straight victory over Connecticut this season. Defenders mustered only six hits; two each from EME and Simon Klink (double, run scored). Geno Espineli gave up both Thunder runs and takes the loss in relief of Ben Cox. Ryan Sadowski allowed both Espineli's runners to score in the bottom of the sixth.

TI returns to the lineup going 0-4 with two Ks and is now batting .121. The Trey Webb first hit watch continues.

Defs return home Friday with a iffy weather forecast the next few days.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Defs rained out in Trenton.....

the Thunder website says no make up date has been announced.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Thunder strikes again with a 5-3 victory over

the Connectict. The Defs muster seven hits with Todd Jennings going 2 for 4. Nick Pereira, like Garrett last night, pitched well enough giving up 4 hits, two earned runs in 5 innings along with 2 Ks and a walk but the bullpen gave up the game. Alex Hinshaw was charged with the loss giving up three runs and Justin Hendrick allowed two inherited runners to score on the only hit he gave up.

The Defs had their worst fielding effort of the season with four errors and a wild pitch that scored a run.

Patrick Dobson played third tonight giving Simon Klink his first game off this year. Trey Webb continues to look for his first EL hit striking out three times in the game.

In response to "thehondohurricane's"comment

about the lack of Defender road coverage I went on line to the local Trenton newspaper to check out their recap of the game. Seems like the Trenton outfielder played EME's ninth inning hit from a single into a triple when he dove unsuccessfuly for a catch. Check out "hondo's" on the money comments under my recap post of last nights game.
While reading the Trentonian's story I found a link to a really good Akron Aeros blog by Stephanie Storm. See the link to the right and check it out.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Trenton defeats CT again 7-2

as EME provided the only offense going 3 for 4 with a RBI triple. Garrett Broshuis pitched well enough going 6IP, 2 ER with 4Hs, 3Ks and a BB. Jeff Petersen had a tough outing giving up 5 Rs, 2 ER in 1.2 IP. The two runs the Defs scored in the top of the 9th were the first off Thunder pitching after 39 straight scoreless innings so far this year.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Defs lose heartbreaker 9-8 to RockCats

as NB scores 3 in the bottom of the 9th off closer Brian Anderson. For CT John Bowker continued his hot hitting going 3 for 5 with a HR. Jake Wald hit his first HR of the year and Simon Klink had 2 RBIs.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

A 10-0 blow out in New Britian....

Chris Begg and Ryan Sadowski combine for a 4 hit shut out over the Rockcats. Simon Klink ( 2 RBI's) and Jake Wald (1 RBI) both had three hit. EME (2 RBI's) and Carlos Sosa had two hits each. Alex Requena ran wild stealing a franchise record 4 bases including a swipe of home. John Bowker hit his second HR of the season. Former Defender Jesse Floyd took the loss for New Britain.
Misc player notes: Geno Espineli gets a spot start Sunday.

Alex Requena steals second, third and HOME...

in the top of the first today against the RockCats with old friend Jesse Floyd pitching for a 1-0 lead. This picture was taken last year.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Defs beat RockCats 7-4....

John Bowker, Brian Horwitz, EME, Simon Klink all collect 2 hits apiece and Carlos Sosa gets three. Alex Hinshaw picks up the win in relief of Darren Sack. The bullpen comes thru again as Hinshaw, Jeff Petersen, and Justin Hedrick ( 2 inning save his first of the season) shut out the RockCats over the last six innings.

Travis Ishikawa to miss the RockCat series due

to a wrist injury on a pick off play during Wednesday's play as reported by Joe Perez of the Bulletin today.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Connecticut loses 5-4 in New Britain tonight..

as former Navigator/Defender Brian Buscher had a pair of RBI doubles for the RockCats. For Connecticut Pat Dobson got his first hits of the season going 2 for 5 with a double, EME goes 1 for 3 with a RBI double, Steve Holm hit his first HR of the season going 2 for 3 with a pair of RBIs and John Bowker had a RBI triple. Carlos Sosa started at first going 0 for 4 in place of Travis I.
Ben Cox falls to 0-2 on the season. He gave up all 5 ER runs in 5 innings pitched.
The bullpen was good again with Brooks McGiven and Osiris Matos shutting out the RockCats the final three innings.
Misc fan notes: I'll be getting up the New Britain this year at least once.

Nick Pereira is the featured video clip

from yesterday's game. I jinxed him as he gave up his only run in this clip.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Well it took 43 scoreless innings at home before

the Defenders pushed across two runs in the bottom of the sixth to salvage a doubleheader split against the FisherCats this afternoon with a 2-1 victory in game 2. The Defs lost the first game1 1-0.
In Game 2 with Connecticut down 1-0 John Bowker lead off with a single, only the Defs second hit of the game and third on the day, Carlos Sosa followed with what should have been a double play grounder but was booted by the FisherCat shortstop. With Brian Horwitz at bat both runners then moved up on a passed ball to second and third. Horwitz who had the sole Defender hit before Bowker's single, then singled plating Bowker and Sosa came around on the outfielder's error. Brian Anderson pitched a perfect 7th for his second save on the season and the Defs first home victory in 2007. Justin Hendrick notched the victory in relief of Nick Pereira.
In Game one Garrett Broshuis was the hard luck loser Connecticut's only offense a Todd Jennings' single. The Defs were baffled by BlueJay prospect lefty David Purcey who fanned 11 in the complete game shut out.

Misc game notes: Special thanks to head usher Bob who gathered up a bunch of us regulars and brought us to the warmth of Lou's Lounge skybox for game two. Thanks also to Johnny Gil for pulling my name for the Dunkin Donut giftcard giveaway and the bonus.
Defs worn their alternate uniforms for the game 2 victory--maybe it's the start of a trend.
EME (late swings if any) and Travis (just lost) continue their total struggles at the plate. Trey Webb started at SS in Game 2 (with a stocking hat over his cap) and Pat Dobson played both games at second base. Both are looking for their first hits of the season.
Brian Horwitz remains the only consistent hitter so far this season.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Another day another rainout............

DH Wednesday at 12:05. That makes 4 rainouts and two live gates so far at home this season.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Rainy day fan notes....

tonight's game with the FisherCats is a washout with better weather in the forecast for Tuesday night.
Joe Perez of the Bulletin tracked down three of last year's Defenders in the Atlantic League in a recent post on his blog: pitchers R.D. Spiehs (Somerset Patriots), James Garcia (Long Island Ducks) and OF Quincy Foster (Lancaster Barnstormers). I thought to give those Atlantic League rosters a look for anymore former Giants farmhands and came up one: catcher John Pachot from the first Giants Norwich Navigators team in 2003 is now playing for the Newark Bears. In Norwich that season John played 90 games with 4 HRs and 36 RBIs with a .266 AVG. The picture of John in the dugout is from April 27, 2003; a 8-7 victory over the B-Mets.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Nor'easter washes out today's game and

perhaps Monday's as well. The pic is of the infield sprinklers that popped up by mistake in Game 2 of yesterday's DH. That's nothing compared to the rain we got today. Anyway Joe Perez of the Bulletin reports that the Giant organization wants Dodd reconfigured in the the off season with either the fences coming out or the infield moved out. After Friday's and Saturday 's results I wouldn't be surprised they didn't do it in the rain today.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Defs lose Game 2 in 15 innings 2-0.

It took four hours and 10 minutes. I left after 7 innings. That makes 31 innings of play this homestand without them scoring a run. Trenton has only scored 5 runs but has won all three games. Rain in the forecast for Sunday.

Misc player notes: Trey Webb up from Augusta made his Double A debut at second in Game 2 but he won't want to remember it going 0 for 6 with 5 ks. Joe Perez reports he's here because D-Mac has a slight injury.

I'm sure the front office rewarded any fans who stuck around with some free tickets, etc.

I've watch three games in two days and have not

seen the home team score yet. A 2-0 loss last night followed with a 1-0 loss in Game 1 of today's DH and I left in the 7th of Game 2 in a 0-0 tie ( hey; I had dinner plans). Of course I get home jump on the computer and they're STILL playing thru 11 innings.

Anyway, same old story, same old song and dance my friends. Great pitching by GM 1 starter Darren Sack ( 6 IP, 4 Hs, 4Ks) who made one bad pitch that went over the fence for the game's only run. Sounds like Ben Cox's performance last night. Two hits apiece from EME, John Bowker and Brian Hortiz was all she wrote for the Defs.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Back to the yard... Home opener 2007 and the

Defenders are shut out 2-0 by Trenton. Ben Cox was the starter and went five innings giving up two hits but one was a 2 run HR to Matt Carlson for the only scoring of the game. The Defender managed only four hits including doubles by Simon Klink and John Bowker.

Cox has good off speed stuff and stuck out five to go along with 3 BBs. Alex Hinshaw and Justin Hedrick pitched two inning each in relief combing for 6 Ks and giving up only one hit.

EME ( yes, he's lost weight and only had one chance in LF coming in on a ball) and Travis I. both went 0 for 4.

Misc notes: Darren Sack (he lives) and Chris Begg go in the DH Saturday. Pat Dobson started at second over D-Mac and had a walk and SB. Hedrick is my kind of pitcher-- fast worker; gets the ball and puts it in there.

Fan notes: Free yearbooks handed out at the gate; that's a first. Johnny Gil had to be freezing tonight dressed only in a suit. Faces in the crowd: owner Lou DiBella and former team VP Keith Haddal. Small crowd given the cold and windy weather. A new price point for tickets: $5 Falvey Jeep seats making the trip out a little more affordable along with those $2 hot dogs and $1 sodas. I have written this before but anytime the team can get a bunch of Coast Guard cadets or sailors from the base into the stands livens the place up even on a cold night like tonight ten fold.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Home opener rained out...try again Friday the 13th

I'll be there! DH Saturday starting at 2:05 ( I'll catch the second game) and have the work on Sunday. Will attend all the FisherCats games.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Connecticut loses 5-1.....

Nick Pereira takes the loss in his EL debut going 4 IP, 5H, 5 R, 4 ER, 5 Ks, no BB. Home opener tomorrow at Dodd but rain in the forecast.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Defenders win 5-4 over FisherCats tonight........

Brian Horwitz's RBI single in the ninth broke a 4-4 tie. Brian Anderson gets his first EL save for Jeff Petersen. Anderson blew a save situation last night. EME hit a three run HR in the first after taking the collar in 6 ABs last night and also had an outfield assist. And D-Mac goes 1 for 4 with the other RBI after an 0 for 5 yesterday. So atonement all the way around.

YON update: After taking last night off Nate is 1 for 1 with a RBI single after 2.5 inning this evening. Go Nate!

Request time...............

I'll hit 35-40 games this season and I'll get pics of everyone. My camera can also take "movies"with sound and I can post 3 minute vidclips via YouTube on the blog. So if there is someone you'd like to "see" that you've only read about please LMK and I'll get them up sooner hopefully than later.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Defenders win opener on road in 13 innings 8-7!

They blow an early 6-2 lead but Jake Wald's RBI single driving home Todd Jennings was the winner. John Bowker goes 3 for 6 with a HR, Travis I. goes yard, and Brian Horwitz goes 3 for 6. Chris Begg gave up 11 hits and 6 earned runs over 4.2 innings but the bullpen trio of Justin Hendrick, Osiris Matos and Alex Hinshaw pitched no hit shut out ball for the next 5.1 innings until Brian Anderson gave up a run in a save situation in the 11th. Geno Espineli shut out the FisherCats in the 12th and 13th innings for the win.

PLAY BALL !!!!!!!!! at last................

the Defs will start the season tonight in N.H. Let's hope the Eastern League starts everyone in the "Southern" diversion next year. What a mess for half the league to start off this way.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Pat Misch's triple A conversion to a reliever is...

paying off well so far with five shutout innings (three last night) in two appearances with Fresno. Pat's path to the bigs looks to be the reliever route and so far he's doing great.
Check out Joe Perez's story on Travis Ishikawa in todays Bulletin.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Another HR for Nate in Fresno third in as many games!

The YON continues..................

No game today, no game Sunday.....

as the Seadogs are unable to clear the snow off their field. You'd think the folks up in Maine would be up to the task! Defenders have three more trips up there this season so hopefully the DHs can be spread out some. At least they played in Manchester, N.H. today where the Defs play Monday. But to add insult to injury rain is forecast for the home opener Thursday April 12th. Check out the Bulletin for some vidclips of the Portland's field.

Opening Day in Portland today! Check out Joe Perez's blog

in the Norwich Bulletin thru out the day for updates and hopefully some pics. Joe's Seadogs blog should be up and going with action today. The wait is almost over!

YON (Year of Nate) update: 2-4 last night with a RBI double and solo HR. I know his Dad's feet haven't touched the ground in the last 48 hrs.

Jake Wald discusses music and baseball in

Stephen Chupaska's New London Day blog today.

Friday, April 06, 2007

I proclaim this THE YEAR OF NATE

as former Defender outfielder and personal fav Nate Schierholtz made his Triple A debut last night with Fresno going 3 for 4 with two runs scored, a double and 3 run HR!

Defenders were snowed out up in Portland and todays game may also be called.

Also any local readers-- if you know anyone with a spare room please get them to contact the team as some of the guys don't have a place to live yet. It's a great experience having a ballplayer live with you for a few months.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

12 players from last year return in addition to the "immortal"

Steve Holm from the 2005 season to the 2007 edition of the Navigators/Defenders franchise. Pitching looks solid with Double A vet Chris Begg fronting the rotation along with 2006 starter and fellow blogger Garrett Broshuis, and newcomer Nick Pereira, who generated a lot of cyber discussion went he jumped over Double A Connecticut to Triple A Fensno from Single A San Jose last year upsetting Defenders fans. Returning pitchers from last season are bullpen hurlers Osiris Mataos, Jeff Petersen, and Geno Espineli, a sometime spot starter. The buzz on the staff is closer Brian Anderson who some Giants fan see as their future closer.

In the field the team returns first baseman and 40 man roster member Travis Ishikawa, touted outfielder Eddy Martinez-Esteve, catchers Todd Jennings and Steve Holm, the third year double play combo of 2B Derin "D-Mac" McMains and SS Jake Wald, OF Alex Requena and OF Brian Horwitz.

In looking at the stats of the new hitters coming in and what I know about the "old" guys it looks like it might be another season of close ball games with no one guy(s) who is a bopper. It's a team that can spray the ball around for sure which will help at Dodd.

Misc player notes: Former Defenders P Jesse Floyd and 3B Brian Buscher were assigned to the New Britain RockCats by Minnesota so we'll be seeing them again later this month.

2007 roster is out....

will post later today and discuss. I posted it over on this morning. Nice mix of players!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Good Luck Andy Busch....

as a poster on another site has heard he quit. Andy came up mid 2006 season and saw limited action once Todd Jennings arrived behind the plate.

Fresno roster posted...

looks like pitcher Chris Begg, Travis Ishikawa. and Eddy Martinez-Esteve are all coming back. Really surprised Begg is back. Tyler Von Schnell is promoted to Triple A. Hopefully the official Defender roster is up soon. If I guess right Todd Jennings and Andy Busch will be the catchers. I think a lot of the pitching staff from last year will also be back. Brian Horwitz should be in the outfield. D-Mac will be back in second. Curious about the rest.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Early tip from one of our posters on Patrick Dobson..

outfielder last year with San Jose. Batted .259 4 HRs with 49 RBIs and 20 SBs with 62 runs. Giants traded Jason Ellison today to Seattle basically freeing up a position in Fresno. Should be seeing that 2007 Defenders roster soon.