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Rays down on the farm August 27: Two more eliminated from contention

Both Charlotte based affiliates saw their slim playoff hopes come to an end

There wasn't much of this in Charlotte yesterday
There wasn't much of this in Charlotte yesterday
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Charlotte and the GCL Rays were both knocked out of playoff races with losses yesterday.  Charlotte turned it around lately, but the big hole they put themselves in at the start of the second half was too much to overcome.  The GCL Rays on the other hand were at the top of the division for much of the season, but they have been playing poorly.

More importantly to the future of the Rays is the performance of Willy Adames.  Bowling Green was blown out, but he had three extra base hits, including his second home run with the organization.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (71-66- clinched postseason)

A day after clinching, Durham took a night off with a 7-1 loss to Gwinnett.  After a nice stretch of starts, Nate Karns turned in his second consecutive clunker.  He allowed six runs on 11 hits and two walks in 4.1 innings with four strikeouts.  Backup catcher Mayo Acosta wound up pitching the last inning which proved to be competent.

The Bulls couldn't manage a baserunner the first four innings, but Jeremy Moore broke up the perfect game with a home run to lead off the fifth.  Durham would only manage four hits and three walks.  Wilson Betemit drew two walks.

Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (29-36- eliminated)

Richie Shaffer homered again, but it wasn't enough in Montgomery's 6-2 loss to Pensacola.  His first inning solo home run gave the Biscuits a 1-0 lead, and that was followed by a Cameron Seitzer double and Luke Maile single to score their second round.  They would have other opportunities to score, but they would squander all of them, including one with the bases loaded.  Shaffer reached base four times, and Taylor Motter had three hits.

They did not hold that lead long.  The Blue Wahoos scored four runs in the bottom half of the first against Victor Mateo, and although he continued allowing baserunners in the following innings, at least he didn't allow more runs.  He finished with the four runs allowed on six hits and six walks in five innings with three strikeouts.

Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (32-29- eliminated)

Austin Pruitt tried going one too many innings in Charlotte's 5-2 loss to St. Lucie.  The loss also eliminates them from playoff contention.  After he cruised through six innings, Pruitt started the seventh with a 2-0 lead, but he allowed hits to four of the five batters he faced before being removed.  The last batter he faced hit a bases clearing double, and he would be charged with four runs on eight hits in 6.1 innings with seven strikeouts and no walks.

The Stone Crabs scored both of their runs in the second.  Marty Gantt's single got them on the board, and Jonathan Quinonez's run scoring groundout made it 2-0.  Seven batters would reach base the remainder of the game, but they couldn't get another big hit.  Jake DePew had three hits, and Gantt reached base three times.  David DeJesus was 0/5 with a strikeout.

Class A Bowling Green Hot Rods (28-35- eliminated)

Fort Wayne jumped on starter Ben Griset in the first inning and eventually blew out Bowling Green in a 12-3 loss.  They scored four runs in the first inning and would go on to an 11-0 lead before the Hot Rods finally scored.  Griset was charged with five runs (three earned) on eight hits and three walks in four innings with two strikeouts.  D.J. Slaton was charged with six runs.

Bowling Green only needed one swing of the bat to get all three of their runs.  Willy Adames hit a three run home run, his second with the Hot Rods, in the eighth inning.  All three of Adames' hits were for extra bases, and the rest of their lineup only combined for two.

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (45-25- M# is 1)

Hudson Valley moved a step closer to clinching with a 5-2 win over Aberdeen.  An inning after the Renegades took a 1-0 lead, Coty Blanchard's two run home run put the game out of reach from the league's worst offense.  Hunter Lockwood and Jace Conrad each had three hit games, including three extra base hits for Conrad.

Starter Chris Pike completely shut down the IronBirds.  He allowed just three hits over six scoreless innings with six strikeouts and no walks.  Aberdeen was able to threaten against relievers Darren Fischer and Mike Franco, but they were able limit the damage to one run allowed each.

Rookie Princeton Rays (36-28- M# is 5, I think)

Danville's offense was relentless in Princeton's 7-5 loss.  After the Rays tied the game at four in the fourth, the Braves scored runs in three consecutive innings to put the game away.  Errors also aided the Braves, and three of the five runs charged to Roel Ramirez were unearned.  He allowed those runs on four hits and a walk in five innings with three strikeouts.  Michael Velasquez allowed the final two Danville runs.

All nine Rays had hits, and they actually outhit Danville 11-7.  They scored two runs in the second inning on three straight doubles by Hec Montes, Nick Ciuffo and Angel Moreno, and a pair of two out hits in the fourth by Manny Sanchez and Riley Unroe scored two more.  Carter Burgess homered in the seventh for their final run of the game.  Moreno and Toribio each had two hits.

Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (30-28- eliminated)

The GCL Rays' playoff hopes came to an end with a 4-3 loss to the GCL Twins.  More important were the rehab appearances of Ryne Stanek and Andrew Toles though.  Toles was 1/4, and Stanek threw a perfect first inning before exiting.  It was his first appearance since 7/19, and I'm assuming it's his last in 2014 unless they don't mind him going back to Charlotte to throw another inning or so.

The Rays held leads of 2-0 and 3-2, but sloppy play came back to hurt them.  Four errors led to both runs Jose Alvarado was charged with to be earned, and he finished with those runs allowed on three hits and a walk in 3.2 innings with three strikeouts.  Spencer Moran and Abrahan Rodriguez each gave up a run in relief.  Bill Pujols had two hits.


Star of the day- Adames has continued his very good play since last month's trade.

Goat of the day- Mateo's outing wasn't particularly good.

Today's games (probables courtesy of

Durham @ Gwinnett 6:35 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Alex Colome (7=5, 3.47) v. Cody Martin (6-8, 3.62)

Montgomery is off

Charlotte @ St. Lucie 6:30 PM (Radio stream)
Blake Snell (5-6, 4.02) v. Luis Cessa (6-8, 4.25)

Bowling Green @ South Bend 7:05 PM (Radio stream)
Jacob Faria (7-9, 3.42) v. Sean Furney (8-7, 3.89)

Hudson Valley v. Aberdeen 7:05 PM (Radio stream)
Jose Alonzo (1-1, 4.71) v. TBA

Princeton @ Burlington 7 PM (Radio stream) DOUBLEHEADER

Both games will be seven innings

GCL Rays @ GCL Twins 12 PM

*Listed as TBA on

Scouting the opposition

Gwinnett Braves
61-76 (4th in IL South)
Offense: 579 R (10th) .718 OPS (10th)
Pitching: 4.41 ERA (10th) 1.49 WHIP (12th)
Top 30 Prospects: C Christian Bethancourt (2), RHP Cody Martin (11), 3B Edward Salcedo (12), OF Joey Terdoslavich (15), RHP Shae Simmons (16), OF Todd Cunningham (23), RHP Aaron Northcraft (25), RHP Juan Jaime (27), RHP James Hoyt (30)

St. Lucie Mets
32-32 (5th in FSL South)
Offense: 625 R (2nd) .727 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 4.21 ERA (10th) 1.40 WHIP (10th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Gavin Cecchini (9), RHP Michael Fulmer (14), RHP Domingo Tapia (19), RHP Matt Koch (24)

South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona)
38-26 (2nd in MWL East)
Offense: 657 R (2nd) .719 OPS (2nd)
Pitching: 3.53 ERA (4th) 1.26 WHIP (3rd)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Jose Martinez (6), OF Justin Williams (14), 1B Daniel Palka (17), C Michael Perez (20), RHP Geordy Parra (22), SS Joe Munoz (26), 2B Jamie Westbrook (27), 2B Andrew Velasquez (28), LHP Anthony Banda

Aberdeen IronBirds (Baltimore)
23-46 (4th in McNamara)
Offense: 227 R (14th) .623 OPS (14th)
Pitching: 3.70 ERA (9th) 1.33 WHIP (11th)
Top 30 Prospects: LHP Stephen Tarpley (21), C Jonah Heim (21), C Alex Murphy (31)

Burlington Royals
28-36 (5th in APP East)
Offense: 255 R (9th) .645 OPS (10th)
Pitching: 4.02 ERA (9th) 1.42 WHIP (8th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Marten Gasparini (20), LHP Foster Griffin, C Chase Vallot, RHP Scott Blewett

GCL Twins
23-35 (4th in GCL South)
Offense: 215 R (14th) .610 OPS (15th)
Pitching: 3.65 ERA (10th) 1.37 WHIP (10th)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Amaurys Minier (24)