The week began with the Zephyrs battling their way out of a season-long losing streak. Before their victory against the Oklahoma Redhawks on July 1, the Z’s endured a 9-game losing streak including sweeps at the ends of the Omaha Royals and the Memphis Redbirds. Yet, the Zephyrs turned things around and captured four wins in their final five games of the week. Losing 10 of their last 14 has pushed the Z’s to seven games back of first place Oklahoma in the PCL American South.
John Rodriguez: 11-28, 2 HR, 7 RBI, 8 R, 2 2B, 2 BB
Since coming over from the Durham Bulls of the International League in the middle of June, Rodriguez has provided stability and a big bat for the Zephyrs. In 21 games played with New Orleans, he is hitting .323 [first on the club, minimum 50 at-bats] and his big week nearly doubled all his offensive numbers. He is hitting .429 [9-for-21] with runners in scoring position. On both Friday and Saturday night, he homered and drove in three runs.
Ruddy Lugo: Win, 7 IP, ER, 6 H, 8 K, 2 BB
After a sharp April, Lugo tailed off over the last two months but is fighting his way out of inconsistency. The 28-year-old right-hander turned in the best effort of the week, shutting down the RedHawks and striking out eight—his most strikeouts since he fanned nine on May 25 against the Albuquerque Isotopes. Zephyr Field proves to be “home sweet home” for Lugo who owns a 5-3 record and a 3.62 ERA at home, but a 1-4 record and 7.94 ERA on the road.
The B-Mets had an up-and-down week both in the standings and on the scoreboard. The club posted a 3-4 record last week while twice surrendering double-digit runs and twice stumbling in close games in which they only scored one run. The B-Mets’ lack of an extended win streak has kept the club hovering around four or five games back of first place for weeks now.
Bobby Parnell: 2 G, 1-0, 12.1 IP, 3 ER, 12 H, 7 K, 3 BB
The right-hander continues to surge, winning five of his last seven decisions and would have brought his winning streak to four straight starts if not for a no-decision on Saturday night. After posting an 0-2 record with a 7.15 ERA in April, he went 4-1 in both May and June with a combined 3.04 ERA. The day time seems to disagree with Parnell who is 0-4 with a 6.30 ERA in six afternoon starts, but is 8-0 with a 2.86 ERA under the lights.
Salvador Aguilar: Win, 6 IP, 2 ER, 8 H, 7 K, BB
The 26-year-old right-hander simply refuses to slow down as he picked up his tenth victory of the season. Since becoming a starter in May, Aguilar has recorded nine of his victories along with a 2.26 ERA in 11 starts in which he averages 6 2/3 innings per outing. As impressive as he has been at NYSEG Stadium [5-1, 3.75 ERA], he has been even better on the road, recording a 5-0 mark against a 1.27 ERA. His seven strikeouts on July 3 at Altoona was the most he accumulated since punching out seven on May 19 at the Connecticut Defenders.
Offense continued to be a soft spot for St. Lucie over the last week as they were shut out once, and though they won once, played in three one-run games. They were swept by the Daytona Cubs a combined score of 24-9. Though the Mets have lost four of their last six games, they still hold onto a ½ game lead in the Florida State League East Division over the aforementioned Cubs.
Jordan Abruzzo: 6-15. 3 R, HR, 2 RBI, 2 2B, BB
The St. Lucie catcher/designated hitter got off to a red hot start when he was first called u from Savannah, then cooled, but will be relied up on in the middle of the St. Lucie order moving forward. First he will need to reverse his oh-fer with runners in scoring position as he is hitless in 12 at-bats in that situation. After 54 games in Savannah, Abruzzo is hitting .313 in 14 games in the FSL. Tradition Field suits him well has he is 13-for-30 [.433] at home but has recorded just two hits in 18 at-bats [.111] in five road games.
Michael Antonini: 2 G, 1-0, 13 IP, ER, 11 H, 10 K, 3 BB
When mid-season promotions are doled out, hopes are that player can provide a spark on his new roster. Well, Antonini has done that and then some. The 22-year-old southpaw has been a model of consistency in St. Lucie as he has yet to allow more than two earned runs in any of his five FSL starts [32 innings] with 22 strikeouts against six walks. Opposition at this level is hitting .229 off him [lefties .188] after lineups hit .227 off him while in Savannah.
After losing the first three games to the Charleston RiverDogs, the Sandgnats captured the series finale against their rivals up the coast on July 1 before reversing their fortune and taking three of four games against the Greenville Drive. The club’s issues of coming up just short continued last week as they endured three one-run games [winning one] and another two-run loss. In 33 games since June 1, the Sandgnats have played in 22 games in which the final decision was a margin of two runs or less. At 7-10 entering Sunday, Savannah sits ½ game ahead of Charleston, out of the basement of the South Atlantic League Southern Division.
Greg Veloz: 10-28, HR, 4 RBI, 7 R, 2 2B, 4 BB, 4 SB
In perhaps his best week of the season, Veloz did everything desired in a lead-off man including extending his hitting streak to 12 games entering Sunday. Over his last ten games, Veloz is hitting .368 [14-for-38] and is hitting .295 since June 1. He ranks eighth and 18th in the Sally League in steals and hits respectively.
Josh Stinson: Win, 6 IP, 5 H, 3 K, BB
On July 1, Stinson took the ball for his first start since April after Nick Carr’s recall to St. Lucie. After struggling as a starter in 2007, he demonstrated that perhaps his time in the bullpen throughout the first half of the year could allow him to be a viable option in the Sandgnats rotation for the second half. It was his victory that prevented the sweep to Charleston. As a reliever, Stinson was 1-3 with a 2.59 ERA in 15 games [41.2 innings].
The Cyclones finished the week with a 4-3 record—including a sweep of the Williamsport Crosscutters—but more importantly, the bats appear to be awakening from their early slumber. After scoring more than four runs in a game once all season leading into the week, the Cyclones busted out for six, nine and 12 runs this week with home runs sprayed around the lineup. Despite a 6-4 record in their last ten games, the Cyclones slipped to two games behind the first-place Staten Island Yankees who are winners of seven straight games entering Sunday.
6-25, 2 HR, 5 RBI, 4 R, 2 2B. 5 BB
The Mets’ second overall pick in the draft finally made his debut last week after missing the first two weeks of the New York-Penn League season with elbow soreness. He is taking a shining to opposing pitching despite his .240 start by demonstrating the power Mets’ draftniks saw in him while at South Carolina. His two big nights aided in the sweep of Williamsport as he homered on back-to-back nights in the last two games of the series. His five walks offer a glimpse of Havens’ strong patience at the plate.
Ike Davis: 10-33, 7 RBI, 2 R, 4 2B
The Mets’ top overall pick made his own splash last week, driving in all seven of his runs so far this season including a 4-RBI effort on July 4 at Williamsport. He recorded a hit in every game last week and while he has yet to smack a home run, he is showing good power potential by recording five doubles in his first 45 at-bats. Davis has yet to earn a walk this season.
The K-Mets pieced together their best week of the season by winning two of three against the Bluefield Orioles, sweeping a brief two-game series against the Johnson City Cardinals and then splitting the first two games against the Danville Braves. After winning eight of their last ten, the K-Mets sit at 11-8 for the season, four games back of first place behind the Elizabethton Twins.
Wilmer Flores: 6-22, 2 HR, 2 RBI, 5 R, 2B, BB
It was an “off” week for the 16-year-old who has been crushing Appalachian League pitching. Across the board, Flores ranks second in home runs , second in RBI , tied for first in hits , second in runs , first in total bases , fourth in slugging [.640] and ninth in batting average [.360] in the league.
Pedro Zapata: 10-26, 4 RBI, 5 R, 2 2B, 3 SB, BB
The 20-year-old outfielder, who spent 41 games in the Dominican Summer League in 2007, started the year very slowly by going 3-for-33 in his first eight games of the year, but has heated up over his last ten. Since June 25, he is hitting .351 [13-for-37]. Strikeouts are a concerned for Zapata who has fanned 16 times against just two walks.
Guillaume Leduc: 2 G, 1-0, 10 IP, 2 ER, 7 H, 9 K, 2 BB
The sixth-round pick in the 2007 Draft has gone on a tear since his first outing of the season in which he allowed three earned runs in 2.1 innings pitched. He picked up his first victory of the year on July 4 against Danville when he threw his longest outing of the year, tossing six innings of one-run ball.
The youngest Mets continue to find their footing in professional ball as they split the week 2-2 with victories over the GCL Cardinals and GCL Marlins. The club is 6-7 so far this season.
Jefry Marte: 5-9, 2 HR, 4 RBI, 3 R, 2B
Even in split time last week, the 17-year-old third baseman had his biggest performance of the new summer. He smacked his first two home runs of his professional career and his fifth double of the season. He ranks second in the Gulf Coast League with a .743 slugging percentage, sixth in batting average [.371] and tied for first in doubles with five.
Jenrry Mejia: W, 5 IP 3 H, 6 K, BB
The young right-hander continues to dazzle this season and last week he got his second win by throwing his second scoreless performance in three starts. He is tied for third in the league with 15 strikeouts and is one of many young hurlers with two victories.