Friday, May 30, 2008

Game Report: Reno at St. George (May 30, 2008)

Unfortunately, the Sox one game winning streak came to a halt with another disastrous start from one of our pitchers as the St. George Roadrunners set new franchise records in most runs and hits in a game when they beat the Sox 18-5 while amassing 19 hits. Reno racked up 6 hits in the loss.

Our number two pitcher, Mike Reeves, got pummeled just like last time. Unlike last time where he gave up 7 runs in 4.1 innings, Reeves gave up 8 in just two innings. His first inning went well but things fell apart in the second when Reeves gave up 3 walks, hit one batter, and allowed a three run homerun . 11 batters would come to the plate resulting in 7 innings.

Reeves came back out in the 3rd but it was obvious that he was already done. St. George Roadrunner’s announcer John Potter noted that Reeves wasn’t fooling anyone with his pitchers. And that led to a walk and two singles and another run. Jeff Leonard had seen enough and hooked Reeves in favor of Mario Guilen. Unfortunately, Guilen couldn’t duplicate his 4 innings of scoreless relief from the other night and allowed two of the runners Reeves left on also came around to score. He was not especially effective going 3 innings giving up four runs on nine hits.

In an indication of how overworked the bullpen is, Jason Cline who started 3 games ago, came in for a relief appearance. As you’ll recall, he went 4.2 innings giving up 13 earned runs. But with three off days meaning it will be 5 days until he pitches again, it was a good strategic move by Jeff Leonard to put Cline out there and hopefully get him some more work to build his confidence. However, the Roadrunners had other ideas and continued the scoring as he went 3 innings but gave up 4 runs on five hits including a homerun. He also didn’t help his cause by throwing away what should have been a easy 1-3 putout in the 8th logging the team’s only error.
Reeves is quite the enigma. In 2005 he pitched with the Surprise Fighting Falcons. In 19 games he went 2-1 with an 8.86 ERA and 18 Ks. He was signed on June 6th and was released 47 days later.

Then Reeves came to the Arizona Winter League this year and, in 7 games with 6 starts, he went 3-1 with a 3.41 ERA, 35Ks and 12 BBs. Jeff Leonard had this to say about him:

“Reeves is a great all around pitcher. He is the type of guy you want starting a game and if a game goes into extra innings, he’s a guy you can call on in a pinch to close it”

However Reeves looks more like 2005 than this past summer as his current line after two starts is 0-1 with a 24.16 ERA and 2 Ks against 6 walks. I’m thinking he is on a pretty short leash now so hopefully he steps it up. None of us like to see thee guys do poorly but this is a business and if Reeves can’t get it done, he’ll be gone soon. With a short 88-game season, guys don’t have the luxury of working through a prolonged slump.

Marc Kaiser is doing as well as expected so he is anchoring the rotation. We just need the rest of our rotation to step up. Here is that rotation if you haven’t kept up with it.
1. Marc Kaiser (1-1, 4.85, 13K)
2. Mike Reeves (0-1, 25.08, 2 K)
3. Steve Russell (0-0, 10.80, 5 K)
4. Jason Cline (0-1, 25.07, 1 K)
5. Shawn Ravens craft (0-0, 14.54, 1 K)

Two off field notes for you…first, the Silver Sox sent out a game report for last night’s game so kudos to the team who didn’t send anything out for the first two games. I know it is harder to keep up with no one from the Sox front office there but I am glad they made the attempt. The Sox get very little exposure in Reno so anything they can do to keep the team on the minds of the fans is good. The RGJ gives them no coverage on the road but the Nevada Appeal does its best to grab those game reports to put in the paper. That is something the team should leverage…maybe the stars will align and one of the rumors of the Sox moving down to Carson City will come true and they’ll already have that solid relationship with the local paper. Now don’t run with that rumor because I don’t put a lot of stock in it especially if the rumor of being the only game in town is possible in Tucson. But it is still worth mentioning so I did.
The other note came from John Potter who reported that Carlos Madrid tweaked his hamstring a couple of games ago. It is similar to the injury that put Madrid out for most of the season last year. So he is going to be out of the lineup until the team gets back to Reno and an MRI is performed. Thanks for the update, John.

The final game of this series happens tomorrow as Steve Russell goes for the Sox. After that, the Sox will have a three day break until returning home to face the Long Beach Armada. They are probably the best team on paper with 4 former major leaguers and five guys with triple A experience. In fact, all but three of their players have played in affiliated ball. They look like the Yankees of our league; now we need to see if Steve Yeager can be the Joe Torre of the GBL and manage all that experience to a league title. In any event, they will play five games in Reno over the next two weeks. In fact it is only because of a five day break that they aren’t higher in the standings.

The schedule is a little wacky like that this year. Obviously, this isn’t the major leagues so costs are always a concern. As such, the schedule is designed to cut travel costs which is a smart move considering the ever increasing price of oil. That means in some cases teams play teams outside their division more than within their own. And it leads to odd series such as LB being off for 5 days, going to Chico for 3 games, taking two games off, coming into Reno for 2 games, going to Chico for 3, then coming back to Reno for 3 over the next two weeks. And we all remember how Chico had more home games than anyone in the league because they had already made commitments to sponsors even though they had to start the league later than they wanted. But I will never be someone to blame a schedule for what happens. Just pointing out that it is a little “un-baseball like”. At the end of the day, a few extra home games of 5 day breaks won’t be that big of a deal if your team isn’t that good.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

SS Fan
Great info again...

I really hope the Sox do move down to Carson City. It is a really good baseball town, I would drive down for games.My assumption is they would use the new park at Western NV College.

On another note, you can sure tell that Les Lancaster is gone. He would have sent the entire bottom half of the starting piching on their way. He did not wait for results, Leonard seems to want to work with these sruggling pitchers!! It's a short season, I want playoff baseball!!