Here is pre-game and in-game information from the Mud Hens' game vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre at Fifth Third Field on Thursday, May 16. Make sure to press “refresh” for updates throughout the contest.
at Toledo Mud Hens (13-28)
First pitch: 6:30 p.m.
Radio: 1230 AM, WCWA. Click here to listen on the Internet.Gameday: Click here to follow the contest pitch-by-pitch.
Bruce Rondon hit the first batter he faced, but he got the next three out to nail down his eighth save. Rondon threw 11 pitches, eight strikes. He threw one fastball at 100
The Mud Hens get a two-out double by Kevin Russo, but that is it. Bruce Rondon comes on in the ninth in an attempt to nail down a 4-1 victory.
Brayan Villarreal returns for a second inning of work and gives up a leadoff single to Dan Johnson, a good 4-A hitter who worked a 3-2 count and lined the eighth pitch of the at-bat to right for a solid hit. Then Villarreal gave up a five-pitch walk to Thomas Neal to put the first two runners on base. Then Villarreal got a huge break when Melky Mesa hit a grounder right to third baseman Kevin Russo, who stepped on third and then threw to second base with a 5-4 double play that left a runner on first base. Then another walk for Villarreal before a flyout ends the inning. Entertaining, to say the least. Interesting, absolutely. Major-league ready? Ah, no.
The Mud Hens get that run back in the seventh, thanks in part of a nifty two-out at-bat by Jordan Lennerton. With two outs and runners on first and second, Lennerton fell behind 1-2, but managed to work the count full so the runners would be going on the pitch. Then he went with an outside pitch and grounded the ball through the hole at shortstop that scored the run. We move to the eighth and Toledo leads 4-1.
QUICK SCOUT ON VILLARREAL: Brayan Villarreal threw 10 pitches, five for strikes. Every pitch he threw was the fastball, which sat at 96-98 mph (two at 96, five at 97, three at 98). No breaking pitches.
The shutout by Derek Hankins ended on the first pitch of this inning, as Melky Mesa lined a home run just over the fence in left field. Hankins then gave up a couple of singles and a flyout to put runners on first and second with one out ... and Brennan Boesch coming up to face a new pitcher, Brayan Villarreal. Villarreal struck out Boesch, then walked Zoilo Almonte on four pitches to load the bases, then got a good defensive play by shortstop Argenis Diaz to get the final out. Toledo's lead over Scranton/Wilkes-Barre is now 3-1 as we hit the seventh-inning stretch.
Toledo is retired quickly by Chien-Ming Wang, who needed just nine pitches in a 1-2-3 frame. Still Mud Hens 3, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 0 as we move to the seventh.
Hens starter Derek Hankins got two outs before finding a little trouble as Ronnier Mustelier singled and Dan Johnson drew a walk. But Hankins got Thomas Neal to fly out to end the threat. For those wondering, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre's Brennan Boesch is 0-for-3 with a foul out on the infield, a groundout and an infield popout.
The Mud Hens add another run, and again see a chance for a bigger inning wasted. With one out, a walk to Argenis Diaz, a single by Ramon Cabrera and an RBI single by Jordan Lennerton brought home the run. With runners on first and second, Chien-Ming Wang bounced a pitch up to the plate and the runners tried to advance, but Scranton/Wilkes-Barre catcher Jeff Farnham threw to second to catch the trail runner, Lennerton. Nick Castellanos grounded out to end the inning. Toledo leads 3-0 as we move to the sixth.
In game full of fast half-innings, Derek Hankins just posted the fastest so far. Hankins needed just six pitches to record a 1-2-3 inning. Hankins is at just 50 pitches through five innings, which is a fantastic pace -- if he keeps it going, which would be hard, he could easily throw a complete game. But that's down the road ... Hens come to bat, leading 2-0.
A 1-2-3 inning for the RailRiders' Chien-Ming Wang, his first of the game. And he needed just 12 pitches to do it. Hens do have seven hits off Wang through four innings and lead Scranton/Wilkes-Barre 2-0 as we move to the fifth.
Another quick inning for Toledo's Derek Hankins, who needed just eight pitches to retire Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. Hankins did give out a two-out double to Dan Johnson and then hit Thomas Neal with a pitch but got a popout to avoid trouble.
The Mud Hens scored a run in the third, but it could have been more except for a nifty double play by the RailRiders that ended the inning. Back-to-back leadoff doubles by Argenis Diaz and Ramon Cabrera scored one run, and a one-out single by Nick Castellanos -- off pitcher Chien-Ming Wang -- put runners on first and third with only one out. Danny Dorn hit a grounder to first base that Dan Johnson caught, touched first, then threw to the plate to cut down Cabrera. Toledo leads 2-0 as we move to the fourth.
A good inning for the Mud Hens' Derek Hankins, who retired the RailRiders 1-2-3 and needed only eight pitches to do it. Hankins is at only 36 pitches through three inning, which is a terrific pace.
The Mud Hens break through for a run off Chien-Ming Wong as Ben Guez singled, took second on a wild pitch, took third on a single by Kevin Russo, and scored on a sacrifice fly by Brad Davis. Toledo leads 1-0 as we move to third.
The RailRiders get runners on first and third after a single and an error. But Derek Hankins struck out both Melky Mesa and Jeff Farnham to keep the game scoreless. Hankins still has thrown 28 pitches through two innings, which isn't a bad pace. NOTE: Farnham is the starting catcher for the RailRiders, not Bobby Wilson as was posted on the original lineup. Wilson was a late scratch -- no reason was given.
The Hens got hits by Argenis Diaz and Nick Castellanos -- Castellanos lined a single to center -- but no runs. Toledo was aggressive at the plate, with the last three hitters swinging at the second pitch. We are scoreless as we move to the second inning.
Mud Hens starter Derek Hankins retired the RailRiders 1-2-3 in the first inning. Brennan Boesch got ahead of Hankins 2-0 but lifted a foul popout caught by Hens third baseman Kevin Russo. It took Hankins just nine pitches to retire Scranton/Wilkes-Barre -- good start for him.
SCRANTON/WILKES-BARRE: Leading off and playing 2B is Corban Joseph, followed by Brennan Boesch in RF, Zoilo Almonte in LF, Ronnier Mustelier at 3B, Dan Johnson at 1B, Thomas Neal at DH, Melky Mesa in CF, Bobby Wilson at C, Reegie Corona at SS and RHP Chien-Ming Wang as the starting pitcher.
MUD HENS: Leading off and playing SS is Argenis Diaz, followed by Ramon Cabrera at DH, Jordan Lennerton at 1B, Nick Castellanos in LF, Danny Dorn in RF, Ben Guez in CF, Kevin Russo at 3B, Brad Davis at C, Gustavo Nunez at 2B and RHP Derek Hankins as the starting pitcher.
- Let’s start with an update on the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre roster, which has another familiar face: OF Brennan Boesch has joined the RailRiders and is starting in right.
- The Tigers made a move late Wednesday, calling up RHP Evan Reed to Detroit while optioning RHP Al Alburquerque to the Mud Hens. Reed is 0-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 14 appearances, allowing 18 hits and seven walks in 21 innings while fanning 28. After an implosion against Charlotte May 3, Reed has thrown 6.1 scoreless innings in his last three appearances, giving up three hits and two walks while collecting eight strikeouts.
- Alburquerque comes to Toledo with an 0-1 record and 3.14 ERA in 15 games with the Tigers. He allowed 13 hits and 13 walks (along with six wild pitches) in 14.1 innings, although he did have 26 strikeouts. Alburquerque gave up runs in each of his last three appearances, surrendering six hits and three walks that resulted in three runs in 2.1 innings.
- You will notice that Quintin Berry is in the starting lineup. Manager Phil Nevin said Berry is not injured, and since Scranton/Wilkes-Barre starter Chien-Ming Wang is a right-hander, this isn’t a righty-lefty matchup. Berry has struggled at the plate all season, hitting .206 in 25 April games before struggling even more in May, hitting .133 in 10 contests this month. The one good thing Berry is doing is drawing walks; he has eight walks this month and has 17 in 35 games, helping him overcoming a .189 season’s batting average to post a .293 on-base percentage.