Welcome to Coop Scoop coverage of the 2012 season! The Hens finish their four-game series with Rochester and their eight-game homestand at Fifth Third Field today. Bouncing back from a day off Saturday, so here are some lineups, notes and links …
5:00 p.m. – So, did anything happen while I was gone? I guess so … and after I produce the lineups, I’ll talk about some of the moves – and how they affect the Mud Hens. Here we go. …
5:05 p.m. –The Mud Hens lineup for manager Phil Nevin. ... Leading off and playing RF is Jamie Johnson, followed by Jerad Head at LF, Justin Henry in CF, John Lindsey at DH, Danny Dorn at 1B, Audy Ciriaco at 3B, Matt Young at 2B, Brad Davis at C, Cale Iorg at SS and RHP Brooks Brown as the starting pitcher. Rochester lineup is next ...
5:11 p.m. – The Rochester lineup of manager Gene Glynn ... Leading off and playing SS is Eduardo Escobar, followed by Matt Carson in RF, Chris Parmelee at 1B, Wilkin Ramirez in LF, Clete Thomas in CF, Evan Bigley at DH, Brian Dinkelman at 2B, Ray Chang at 3B, Danny Lehmann at C and RHP Eric Hurley as the starting pitcher.
5:18 p.m. – A few moves were made before today’s game. … The Tigers recalled IF Danny Worth and put IF-OF Ryan Raburn on the disabled list with a right thumb sprain. As a result, the Tigers will be one position player short on the 25-man roster.
5:25 p.m. – How long with the Mud Hens be short a player? Perhaps not very long. The Tigers traded for IF Jeff Baker, who is expected to join Detroit on Monday. It wouldn’t surprise me if Danny Worth returns to Toledo when Baker is activated, but we’ll find out officially Monday.
5:32 p.m. – I asked Mud Hens manager Phil Nevin about Ben Guez, who went on the disabled list July 27 with a hamstring problem. Nevin said that Guez will run the bases Monday and will be evaluated after that.
5:40 p.m. -- One move for Rochester ... The parent Twins traded Danny Valencia to Boston today, and Minnesota promoted IF Tsuyoshi Nishioka before the game, so he is out of the lineup.
5:49 p.m. -- A few links from today's Blade are next ... First, click here to read the game story from Saturday's game written by Donald Emmons. Click here to read a notebook I wrote about several former Mud Hens on the Rochester roster. And click here to view the photo gallery from Saturday's game with photos taken by The Blade's Jeremy Wadsworth.
5:56 p.m. -- We've got the pre-game meeting at home plate, so we're going to start momentarily. And here's a quick update ... the Tigers announced after their victory this afternoon that Danny Worth would be sent to the Mud Hens to open up a roster spot for Jeff Baker. I would suspect Worth rejoins the Hens Monday for their four-game series in Louisville. Baseball is here ...
6:11 p.m. -- Tough break in the first inning for Toledo starter Brooks Brown, who gave up a one-out single to Matt Carson, who stole a base with two outs and came home on a single to right by Wilkin Ramirez. Mud Hens come to bat in the bottom of the first, trailing 1-0.
6:18 p.m. -- The Mud Hens mounted a bit of a rally in the bottom of the first off Rochester starter Eric Hurley. Jerad Head drew a one-out walk, and John Lindsey blooped a two-out single to right before Danny Dorn hit a slow roller to second base for the final out of the inning. No score, end of the first.
6:31 p.m. -- As I look at my notes, I realize I forgot to post a note about RHP Al Alburquerque. Alburquerque, who is on a rehab assignment with the Mud Hens, threw just one-third of an inning (five pitches, four strikes) before the rains came on Saturday. Mud Hens manager Phil Nevin said he wasn't sure when Alburquerque would pitch next for the Hens.
6:48 p.m. -- A couple of plays you don't see very often in the top of the third inning. The first happened with one out and runners on second and third. Wilkin Ramirez hit a line drive towards shortstop, and when the Hens' Cale Iorg tried to reach for the ball, Iorg collided with Red Wings baserunner Chris Parmelee. On that play Ramirez is credited with a single and Parmelee is called out. More importantly, Matt Carson had to stay at third base. That proved to be important because ...
6:55 p.m. -- Toledo starter Brooks Brown used the fake-to-third, throw-to-first move ... and got the final out of the inning. On the fake to third, Ramirez strayed too far off first base and Brown ran at him to keep him from getting back safely. Carson at third tried to time Brown and race home, but Brown threw Carson out at third base to end the inning. Mud Hens come to bat in the bottom of the third, trailing 2-0.
7:06 p.m. -- The Mud Hens have found their offensive good-luck charm ... The Famous San Diego Chicken. Toledo got a walk and a single in the first two innings off Rochester starter Eric Hurley. In the bottom of the third inning the Chicken took over as the Mud Hens' first-base coach, and Toledo's offense went wild. Cale Iorg led off with a home run, Jamie Johnson beat out a grounder behind second base for a single, Jerad Head collected a single on a grounder in the hole at shortstop, and after Justin Henry sacrificed the runners up a base, John Lindsey hammered a three-run homer to left-center. Danny Dorn and Audy Ciriaco singled to knock Hurley out of the game. Hens still batting as former Mud Hen Luke French comes on in relief for Rochester.
7:17 p.m. -- The Mud Hens send 12 batters to the plate in the third inning and score six runs, tying their season high. The final damage assessment: six hits (two homers, four singles) plus three walks, two with the bases loaded to force in runs. Toledo leads Rochester 6-2 as we head to the fourth.
7:24 p.m. -- By the way, nice effort in the fourth inning by Brooks Brown. After Toledo scores six times in the third, Brown shut the Red Wings down in order in the fourth. Not only did Brown retire the side 1-2-3, he did it in an economical six pitches. Get the boys back into the dugout quickly so they can bat again, at least that's the theory.
7:41 p.m. -- Rochester gets a run back in the fifth thanks to a home run by Eduardo Escobar. Mud Hens come to bat in the bottom of the fifth, still leading 6-3.
8:09 p.m. -- Mud Hens reliever Andy Oliver works two scoreless innings of relief, striking out three and allowing only a two-out single and one walk. He threw 41 pitches, 27 for strikes. One of his pitches registered 101 mph on the scoreboard, but I would not consider that reliable. Having said that, Oliver WAS throwing hard. The fastball sat in the 95-97 mph range (three at 97, BTW). Mud Hens still lead 6-3 at the seventh inning stretch.
8:28 p.m. -- Nearly hit by a foul ball for the second time in a month. First pitch of the eighth inning was fouled back by Matt Carson -- and created the dent in the frame of the press box window ... the dent on the TOP of the frame. The dent to the right of the frame came in the past few weeks. Hazard pay, anyone?
8:36 p.m. -- Oh by the way, Luis Marte struggles to protect the lead, getting one out before giving up a walk and a single. Matt Hoffman comes on in relief of Marte to face former Mud Hen Clete Thomas, who is the tying run. Score is Mud Hens 6, Rochester 3 as the Red Wings bat with two on and one out in the eighth.
8:45 p.m. -- After taking 6-2 lead, Rochester has scored four times in the eighth inning and tied the game at 6-6. Crazy eighth inning as Chris Bootcheck gives up an RBI single to Evan Bigley and a game-tying two-run double to Brian Dinkelman that tied the game. With runners on second and third with only one out, Ray Chang bunts and Bootcheck makes an impressive diving catch to record the out. But Bootcheck is injured on the play (trainer Matt Rankin was holding Bootcheck's left arm close to his body, which leads me to believe he hurt his shoulder or elbow, but no official word at this point). Zach Miner comes in the top of the eighth with two in scoring position and two outs in a 6-6 tie.
8:53 p.m. -- Mud Hens fans let out a sigh of relief as Miner gets the final out of the eighth and keeps the score tied. But Rochester's Danny Lehmann hit a long fly ball that just went foul (had it stayed fair, it would have been a double), then hit a solid line drive to left that Matt Young snagged with a running catch. We're tied 6-6 as Toledo comes to bat in the bottom of the eighth.
9:09 p.m. -- The Mud Hens scratch out a run in the top of the eighth ... the managerial wheels were turning on both sides. The inning was fueled by a hit-and-run single by Jamie Johnson, but the key hit came with the bases loaded and two outs. John Lindsey hit a ground ball into the hole at shortstop that Rochester third baseman Ray Chang gloved with a dive ... but by the time he got up and made the throw to second, Justin Henry was safe and Brad Davis had scored the go-ahead run. Mud Hens lead 7-6 as we head to the top of the ninth.
9:23 p.m. -- One pitch away from victory, and it slips away ... Zach Miner gets the first two outs in the top of the ninth, then works the count full against the Red Wings Chris Parmelee. Parmelee promptly deposits the next pitch onto the roof of the Fricker's building behind the right-field fence for a game-tying home run. Miner then gave up a double to Wilkin Ramirez and walked Clete Thomas before getting Evan Bigley to hit into an inning-ending force. The Mud Hens now are looking for their fourth walk-off win as the bat in the bottom of the ninth inning of a 7-7 tie.
9:36 p.m. -- We go to the tenth inning with a 7-7 tie. Mud Hens are 4-7 in extra innings this season, while Rochester is 5-3. Collin Balester on in relief for the Hens in the tenth.
10:06 p.m. -- Balestar pitches back-to-back clean innings in the tenth and 11th, striking out three along the way. In the 12th the first batter, Wilkin Ramirez, hit a LONG fly ball to straight-away center. If he pulls it just a little, it's a home run. Since it went to straight-away center, it's just a long out. Then after a groundout there was a double by Evan Bigley, the first batter to reach base against Balester, before an inning-ending fly out. Still tied at 7-7 as we head to the bottom of the 12th.
10:18 p.m. -- We move to the 13th inning of a 7-7 tied between the Mud Hens and Rochester. Big night for the Mud Hens' Jamie Johnson, who singles in the 12th for his fourth hit of the night. Johnson, who was called up from Double-A Erie on Aug. 3, has three singles and a triple as well as a walk in seven plate appearances. John Lindsey has two hits, while every other Mud Hen starter except Justin Henry has one hit.
10:29 p.m. -- Hairy moment for the Mud Hens in the top of the 13th ... With two outs and no one on base Eduardo Escobar singled, then on a pickoff attempt at first base Danny Dorn failed to catch the ball cleanly, allowing Escobar to race around to third base. But Luke Putkonen gets a popout to end the inning, so the Hens come to bat in the bottom of the 13th trying to break a 7-7 tie.
11:15 p.m. -- OK, believe it or not, I wrote a story about this game ... even though it's not over. We are in the bottom of the 16th inning, and Mud Hens and Rochester are still tied 7-7. Neither team has scored since Chris Parmelee homered with two outs in the top of the ninth to tie the contest. Records watch in a moment ...
11:23 p.m. -- Here are a couple of records ... Tonight's game sets the Fifth Third Field record for longest game in terms of time, currently sitting at 5:23 as I type this. The previous record was 4:39 for a 14-inning game between Toledo and Rochester on June 23, 2003. It also is the longest game, in terms of innings, in Fifth Third Field history. The previous longest game in terms of innings was a 16-inning contest between Toledo and Syracuse on June 16, 2006.
11:31 p.m. -- For those who are wondering ... the longest game in Mud Hens history was a 21-inning game between the Mud Hens and Richmond on Aug. 7, 1989.
11:42 p.m. -- Here's a bit of craziness ... The T-Town Dragsters have danced FIVE times in this contest, ALL FIVE coming in extra innings. The Dragsters have danced to "Proud Mary," (Tina Turner version), "Single Ladies (Put A Ring on It)" by Beyonce, "Party in the U.S.A." by Miley Cyrus, "Bye Bye Bye" by N'Sync and a quick hitter of "Let's Groove" by Earth, Wind & Fire.
11:49 p.m. -- Crazy ending to the top of the 18th inning. With Jose Ortega pitching, Rochester's Ray Chang was on second base with two outs. Matt Carson hit a grounder up the middle that bounced off the glove of Ortega and past Argenis Diaz at shortstop. Chang raced around third, but Cale Iorg picked up the ball and threw home, and catcher Brad Davis applied the tag for the final out of the inning. Mud Hens come to bat in the bottom of the 18th with the score still tied 7-7.
12:05 a.m. -- We have passed the six-hour mark, and we're moving to the 19th inning with the score still tied 7-7. The Mud Hens had the best chance to score in extra innings when John Lindsey walked and Danny Dorn singled Lindsey to third. Audy Ciriaco struck out, but Matt Young was intentionally walked to load the bases with one out. But Diolis Guerra struck out Brad Davis and Cale Iorg to send us to the 19th inning.
12:12 a.m. -- Rochester scores three runs in the top of the 19th inning. With two outs and no one on, Clete Thomas singled off Jose Ortega and Evan Bigley doubled into the gap in right-center to allow Thomas to score. Then Brian Dinkelman hit a roller up the middle that he beat out for a single; Cale Iorg threw the ball to first, but it wasn't in time; Bigley steamed around third and, although Danny Dorn threw to home plate, catcher Brad Davis wasn't able to apply the tag and Bigley scored. Then Dinkelman stole second and came home on a double by Ray Chang. Mud Hens are down to their final at-bat in the bottom of the 19th inning, trailing 10-7.
12:29 p.m. -- Jamie Johnson leads off with a walk, and with two outs John Lindsey slams a two-run homer, his second round-tripper of the game. But Chris Parmelee at first base makes a diving stop to retire Danny Dorn with the game's final out, and the Mud Hens fall to Rochester 10-9 in 19 innings. You saw all the records above ... here's one more: Rochester sweeps the four-game series with the Hens at Fifth Third Field and win all eight games against Toledo this season. No team has ever turned that trick since the Mud Hens moved to Fifth Third Field in 2002.
12:39 a.m. -- There were 679 pitches thrown in the contest, 347 by seven Rochester pitchers and 332 by nine Mud Hen pitchers.
12:44 a.m. -- Believe it or not, 170 kids waited 6:32 to run the bases following the contest.
12:50 a.m. -- I think that's about enough, right? OK, one for the road ... Louisville claimed a victory today, meaning the Mud Hens fourth consecutive loss gives them a 44-72 record. Toledo now is one game behind the Bats in the race to avoid having the worst record in the International League. In a similar vein, the Hens will need to win every game for the rest of the season to finish with a .500 record.
12:55 a.m. -- OK, that's it. Mud Hens hit the road for games at Louisville Monday through Thursday. Thanks for following along!