Game notes 7/12; Eastern Division Swing, Tuesday’s in July, & Second Half Woes
Today’s Preview: The Clinton LumberKings (A, Mariners) meet the Dayton Dragons (A, Reds) for the first and only time during the 2017 season. The LumberKings trail the all-time series 48–51, dating back to 2000, and trail against Dayton, 12–14, since the LumberKings became a Seattle Mariners affiliate in 2009. During the 2016 season, the LumberKings traveled to Dayton and swept the Dragons in a three-game series. The sweep in Dayton, was just the second Clinton sweep in Dayton in franchise history. The LumberKings have never had a three-game series sweep in Clinton but did sweep up the Dragons in a four-game series in Clinton May 10–13 in 2005.
LumberKings Starter: Robert Dugger, 21, makes his eighth appearance and start of the season for the Clinton LumberKings. The righty is coming off a six inning outing start against the Burlington Bees in Clinton in which he was given a no decision for allowing one run, unearned, while walking one, and striking out five. Since moving to the starting rotation, Dugger has allowed just six runs, five earned, for an ERA of 1.07 in 33.2 innings of work. The Texas native was one of the four LumberKings all-stars this season, the last LumberKing to be named to the all-star named replacing Dalton Sawyer of the Beloit Snappers on the Western Division all-star team. He was selected by the Seattle Mariners in the 18th round of the 2016 MLB Draft out of Texas Tech.
Dragons Starter: Tony Santillan, 20, makes his 17 appearance and 16 start of the season for the Dayton Dragons. The Texas native took the loss his last time out with six innings of work turned in against the Hot Rods in Bowling Green. In the start, he allowed two run, on five hits, while walking none, and striking out seven. A highly thought of right-handed pitcher out of high school he was taken by the Cincinati Reds in the second round of the 2015 MLB Draft. He spent the first season of professional career with the AZL Reds before spending the 2016 season with the Billings Mustangs and Dayton Dragons. This season, Santillan was side lined at the end of May and into the first week of June with his first stint on the disabled list of his professional career. He won the MVP award for the Connie Mack world series in 2014 with a two-run double and 3.1 innings in the championship game. He was recruited for Texas Tech with a fastball at 93–95, occasionally hitting 98, working off a curveball, 12-to-6, that registers in the mid 80’s. The issue with Santillan has been with control and his ability to repeat his delievery.
Last Time Out: Brandon Miller matched a professional career-high for strikeouts with nine in a 6–1 Clinton LumberKings loss to the Quad Cities River Bandits on Monday night at Modern Woodman Park. Despite equaling the River Bandits (14–5, 51–36) in hits, with six, the LumberKings (6–13, 37–50) mustered just one run in the series finale loss. Miller (8–4) turned in another strong start for Clinton allowing four runs, three earned, in 5.1 innings while walking one and striking out nine. The River Bandits scored the game’s first run in the bottom of the second inning when Daz Cameron reached on a Luis Rengifo throwing error at short, moved to third on a Wader Franco double, and scored on an RBI ground out from Troy Sieber. In the bottom of the third inning, Josh Rojas added to Quad Cities lead with a solo home run to center right field. The homer was his fourth of the season and his second of the series.
Yohan Ramirez kept the LumberKings at bay with five shutout innings of work for the River Bandits. The righty allowed just two hits to LumberKings hitters, walked two, and struck out three to earn his second win of the year.
Here Comes the East: The Clinton welcome in the Dayton Dragons and Bowling Green Hot Rods for a six-game home stand. The games will be the only contests with the Dragons and Hot Rods this season and will be the final trip to Ashford University Field this season by teams from the Eastern Division.
An End to Tuesdays: The LumberKings are coming off a stretch of 20 straight days of games, the second longest stretch of the season, the league wide off say for the MLB All-Star Game marks the first of three straight Tuesday’s offs for Clinton. The onlu Tuesday game the LumberKings will play in the month of June was on July 4th, a loss to the Burlington Bees.
Spread Apart: Hits did not equal success for the LumberKings in their four-game series in Quad Cities. They out hit the River Bandits on Friday night and took the loss and in the series finale tallied six hits, the same as Quad Cities, and fell 6–1.
Second Half Woes: The reset button has not been hit by the LumberKings for the second half. After finishing tied for fourth in the Western Division during the first half, the LumberKings have sunk to last in the Western Division in the second half. Of their five series thus far in the second half the LumberKings have lost four and won just one series, a three-game series July 4–6 at Ashford University Field against the Burlington Bees.
This date in baseball history: On this date in 1910, the legendary verse detailing the Cubs’ double play combination of Tinker to Evers to Chance, entitled That Double Play Again, is published for the first time. When the ‘New York Evening Mail’ republishes the same poem six days later, the newspaper will use the title by which the poem is best known today, Baseball’s Sad Lexicon.
Broadcast Information: All games will be broadcast live on 100.3 FM WCCI and online at LumberKings.com via the TuneIn Radio App with the Erik Oas, in his first season as the “Voice of the LumberKings.”