May 20, 2022

Washington Nationals Minor League Report for August 23

Compiled from team press releases:

SYRACUSE (AAA International League): The Syracuse Chiefs beat the Buffalo Bisons, 3-0, Sunday afternoon at Coca-Cola Field. Paolo Espino allowed just one hit in seven shutout innings to lift the Chiefs to their first series win of the season against the Bisons.

Syracuse (58-71) started the scoring in the first inning. Matt den Dekker hit his eighth home run of the season to give the Chiefs an early 1-0 lead.

The Chiefs scratched across a second run in the second inning. Caleb Ramsey tripled to lead off the frame, giving him a season-high six game hit streak. He scored a batter later on Mario Lisson‘s groundout to short to push the lead to 2-0.

Syracuse finished off the scoring in the seventh. Ricky Hague led off with a double, and scored two batters later on den Dekker’s single to push the lead to 3-0.

Buffalo (65-64) couldn’t solve Espino, managing just a Ty Kelly fifth-inning single in seven innings. After picking up 18 hits Friday night, the Bisons managed just eight in the final two games of the series.

Syracuse returns home Monday and opens a five-game home-and-home series against Rochester at 7:05 p.m. Richard Bleier is scheduled to start for the Chiefs opposite Logan Darnell for the Red Wings.

HARRISBURG (AA Eastern) via The Portland Sea Dogs gave the Harrisburg Senators a taste of their own medicine with an 8-run fourth inning to win going away, 9-0. Harrisburg (60-66), which scored nine runs in the first inning on Saturday night, was shutout for the tenth time this season.

Senators starter Brian Rauh cruised through three innings before running into trouble in the decisive fourth. Rauh (1-4) allowed six runs on seven hits while striking out two as he made his first start with Harrisburg since May 13.

“For the first three innings I thought he did a pretty good job keeping the ball down in the zone and also getting the ball in on some guys,” pitching coach Chris Michalak said. “In that fourth inning, it didn’t seem like that there were that many pitches going in. And then the fact that the pitches away were elevated, those are easy balls to put in play especially with two strikes because you’re looking for pitches out over there.”

Nationals’ reliever David Carpenter, in Harrisburg on a Major League rehab assignment, worked a scoreless 2/3 of an inning before his outing was cut short by sprinkler system malfunction that forced the right-hander to stand around longer than Michalak thought was in his best interests.

The Senators were only able to scratch out three singles off Portland starter Aaron Wilkerson and reliever Williams Jerez. Denard Span, Adrian Sanchez, and Wilmer Difo got the base knocks for Harrisburg which only batted once with a runner in scoring position.

The Senators head out for their final road trip of the 2015 season as they begin a series in Richmond on Monday evening with John Simms on the mound, starting at 7:05 p.m.

POTOMAC (High-A Carolina League): Lynchburg (65-61-Overall, 34-28-Home, 32-24-Second Half) plated two runs in the bottom of the first and three pitchers combined to shutout the Nationals (58-67-Overall, 29-36-Road, 25-30-Second Half) 2-0 in the rubber match at Calvin Falwell Field to win the series.

RHP Michael Peoples (10-3, 3.55) made his 21st start of the season for the Hillcats and he did not disappoint the first place ball club. Peoples shutout the Nationals through seven innings and relinquished only four hits, two walks and he struck out one, earning his tenth win of the season.

RHP Justin Brantley entered in the eighth and fired a scoreless frame allowing one hit and striking out one batter and RHP Trevor Frank (SV 1) was summoned to close out the 2-0 win, which he did by retiring all three men he faced in the ninth, sealing the 2-0 series winning victory.

Against newly promoted RHP Jeff Howell (0-1, 3.00), the Hillcats scored two runs in the home half of the first inning and that proved to be enough. DH Levon Washington walked against Howell to begin the ballgame for the ‘Cats. 2B Claudio Bautista followed with a double that pushed Washington to third. CF Clint Frazier knocked in Washington with an RBI groundout to the left side and the score was 1-0. After a walk to 1B Joe Sever, LF Dorssys Paulino doubled home Bautista for a 2-0 advantage.

Howell pitched six-plus innings and allowed only five hits and the two runs (both earned) on four walks and he struck out two, taking the loss in his Carolina League debut, despite a quality start.

After the two run first, the knuckleballer settled in nicely for Potomac, facing only one man over the minimum of 15 from innings two through six and never allowed a Hillcats runner to reach second base during that stretch.

Peoples faced only three men in four of his six innings and only allowed a man to reach second base three times in the entire game. Potomac had rallies cut down in the second inning due to a caught stealing, the fourth inning due to a 5-4-3 twin killing and in the fifth inning courtesy of a 4-6-3 twin killing. Potomac’s last real rally was in the sixth when they picked up an infield single by RF Narciso Mesa and then DH Alec Keller extended his hitting streak to four games with a single to push Mesa to second, but with two outs. 1B Grant DeBruin lined out hard to left field to end the threat.

RHP Jake Johansen came in from the bullpen when Howell ran into trouble in the bottom of the seventh. Paulino reached on an infield single that saw 3B John Wooten make an incredible diving stop in foul territory behind the third base bag but the throw was late and then RF Mike Papi singled him to third base. Johansen entered struck out C Eric Haase and 3B Paul Hendrix before he got SS Ivan Castillo to pop out to end the inning. Johansen came back out for the bottom of the eighth and faced only four men, giving up a two-out single but that was it. Johansen logged two scoreless innings giving up one hit and striking out three.

Frank entered for the top of the ninth and inked his first save of the 2015 season with the perfect ninth inning.

Potomac falls, once again, to 6.5 games back of Lynchburg with only 14 games remaining on the schedule and their elimination number is now down to eight. The Nationals were shutout for the eighth time in 2015 and will end the season 12-12 against the Hillcats, their Northern Division rival.

Tonight from Pfitzner Stadium Potomac will send RHP Tyler Mapes (4-2, 2.51) to the mound against the Frederick Keys RHP David Hess (8-4, 2.78).

First pitch from the friendly confines is set for 7:05 pm.

HAGERSTOWN (Low-A South Atlantic): The Hagerstown Suns (28-28, 63-61) put up four runs in the bottom of the third inning on Sunday afternoon and cruised to a 7-4 win over the Lexington Legends (21-33, 52-72), salvaging a split of the four-game series. The season series between the two clubs is now split at four wins apiece, and Hagerstown improved its record on Sundays this season to 14-6.
Going into the bottom of the third on Sunday Hagerstown held a slim 1-0 lead, but that quickly changed. Center fielder Andrew Stevenson led off the inning with a fly ball single to left. The next batter, SS Osvaldo Abreu, was hit by a pitch. First baseman Jose Marmolejos then brought both runners home with a double to left, making it 3-0 Suns. Catcher Raudy Read followed with a double of his own to plate Marmolejos and put Hagerstown up by four. Two batters later, Read moved to third on a wild pitch, and scored from third on a sacrifice fly by RF Dale Carey to make it 5-0 Suns.

Lexington responded by scoring its first run in the fourth. Second baseman Austin Bailey hit a one-out double to left, giving the Legends their first hit and base runner of the game. Bailey went to third on a single by catcher Chad Johnson. He scored from third on a passed ball by Read, making it a 5-1 game.

Hagerstown then took its largest lead in the fifth. Read hit a one-out line drive single up the middle. Two batters later Carey stroked a single to right, putting runners on first and second with two outs. Second baseman Bryan Mejia then stepped to the plate, and he delivered with a line dive double to right, driving in both Read and Carey to make it 7-1.

In the seventh Lexington closed the gap by plating three. Center fielder Anderson Miller led off with a double to center field. Following a pop out by RF Brandon Downes, DH Chase Vallot and LF Samir Duenez drew back-to-back walks to load the bases. First baseman Mike Hill then hit a line drive single to right, driving in Miller and Vallot to make it 7-3. Duenez scored the final run of the inning on a groundout to first by SS Luis Valenzuela.

Starting RHP Luis Reyes (6-7) limited Lexington to one unearned run on two hits and one walk over six innings while striking out four to earn the win for Hagerstown. Starting RHP Yunior Marte (4-3) suffered the loss for the Legends. He lasted just three innings, giving up five earned runs on four hits and two walks while striking out one. RHP Ryan Brinley pitched the last 1.1 innings for the Suns to earn his first save of the season in his second attempt.

After a day off tomorrow, the Suns next head to Lakewood, New Jersey to begin a four-game series against the Lakewood BlueClaws (30-26, 63-61) starting on Tuesday, August 25. The Suns will send RHP Justin Amlung (3-2) to the mound on Tuesday for his sixth start and 17th appearance for the Suns this season. He will square off against LHP Austin Davis (3-5) for Lakewood. First pitch on Tuesday is scheduled for 7:05pm.

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