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Rays down on the farm September 6: Bulls survive Elliot Johnson home run

Former Ray Elliot Johnson took Matt Andriese deep, but it wasn't enough

Elliot Johnson has a .692 OPS in 365 plate appearances for Columbus this season
Elliot Johnson has a .692 OPS in 365 plate appearances for Columbus this season

Hudson Valley's season came to an end last night with a tight loss, but Durham plays on.  They have an afternoon game that could send them back to the finals with a win.  That would set up a 2013 rematch against the Pawtucket Red Sox after they swept Syracuse in the other semifinal.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (2-1)

An early 3-0 lead held up in Durham's game three 3-2 win over Columbus.  Two out hits by Jeremy Moore and Tim Beckham in the first inning gave the Bulls a 2-0 lead, and Nick Franklin's home run an inning later extended the lead to three.  After that, the offense didn't really threaten.  Beckham and Justin Christian would finish with two hits each.

Matt Andriese was decent, and it was two mistakes that cost him.  After shrugging off nominal pressure in the first four innings, former Ray Elliot Johnson and another Clipper hit back to back home runs to start the fifth.  He would retire the next three batters and finish with two runs allowed on three hits and two walks in five innings with eight strikeouts.  C.J. Riefenhauser bounced back with a two inning, three strikeout relief stint, and Josh Lueke and Adam Liberatore each threw an inning.

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (1-2)

Hudson Valley was on the wrong end of another pitchers' duel, and their season ended with a 2-1 loss to State College.  The Renegades took advantage of an error to score a first inning unearned run, and they were probably lucky to get even that because Spikes starter Fernando Baez was very good.  At one point, he retired 11 in a row on his way to a 5.1 inning, 10 strikeout performance.

Hudson Valley starter Chris Pike was good as well, and he finished the season strong.  He allowed just three hits and a walk in six scoreless innings with four strikeouts, making this his third straight start with six or more scoreless innings.  Mike Franco relieved him, and after sneaking out of trouble in the seventh, he couldn't do it again in the eighth.  He allowed three straight singles to start the inning, and two errors helped facilitate the Spikes comeback, although both runs were earned.  Braxton Lee and Jace Conrad each had two hit games.


Star of the day- Franklin's home run provided just enough insurance for the Bulls.

Goat of the day- It's a shame to see Hudson Valley's season end like that.

Today's games (probables courtesy of

Durham v. Columbus 1:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Nate Karns (9-9, 5.08) v. Toru Murata* (5-3, 5.38)

Game four of a best of five series (Durham leads 2-1)

Hudson Valley's season is over

*Listed as TBA on

Scouting the opposition

Columbus Clippers (Cleveland)
Offense: 672 R (2nd) .743 OPS (4th)
Pitching: 3.71 ERA (6th) 1.27 WHIP (1st)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Francisco Lindor (1), OF Carlos Moncrief (14), LHP Scott Barnes (26), RHP Shawn Armstrong (29), OF James Ramsey, LHP Nick Maronde