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International League News And Notes

June 4, 2009 - International League (IL) News Release


WOUNDED HERD: The Bisons are mirroring their parent club in a painful way as the Herd can't seem to keep a healthy roster either. Buffalo has seven players currently on their disabled list, including RHP Dillon Gee (right shoulder strain), RHP Carlos Muniz (right shoulder strain) and INF Argenis Reyes (groin contusion). Buffalo has missed 161 man-games to injury this year. In 52 games this season, Buffalo has had 47 different players. OF Matt Watson, signed yesterday by the Mets, will become the 48th player this week.

WATSON SIGNED: To help out with injured lineup, the Mets have signed OF Matt Watson. Watson, 30, spent the first part of this season with the Doosan Bears of the Korean Baseball League. In 2008, he hit .290 (73-252) with 18 doubles, five home runs and 30 RBI in 76 games with the Syracuse Chiefs. In 10 minor league seasons, Watson is a career. 300 hitter (961-3208) in 912 games with 89 home runs and 522 RBI.

BROADWAY TO NEW YORK: On Friday, May 30, the New York Mets acquired RHP Lance Broadway in a trade with Chicago White Sox. Broadway, 25, is 0-1 with a 5.65 ERA in eight games with the White Sox this year (16.0 IP, 19 H, 10 R, 9 ER, 9 BB, 9 K). In addition, the 6'3", 195-pounder made three starts for Charlotte, going 0-2 with a 5.63 ERA (16.0 IP, 18 H, 11 R, 10 ER, 4 BB, 15 K). The former 1st round pick in the 2005 draft from Texas Christian University made his major league debut in 2007.


HERE AND GONE: The top prospect in the White Sox organization, INF Gordon Beckham, was with the club for just 7 games before being having his contract purchased by the White Sox following the Knights 6-4 loss to Columbus last night.  Beckham started all 7 games he was with Charlotte and hit safely in each one.  Beckham hit .464 (13-28) with 6 doubles, 3 RBI and 7 runs scored.  The Knights are expected to be losing veteran pitcher Jose Contreras soon as well.  Contreras has started 5 games going 3-1 with a 2.70 ERA.  Contreras threw a one-hit complete game shutout vs. Toledo on May 18.  IL opponents are hitting just .164

(19-116) off Contreras. The Cuban right-hander has worked on his fastball command and has seen increased movement on his forkball since joining the Knights.


OTHER ROSTER MOVES: LHP Wes Whisler earned his first Major League promotion over the weekend.  Whisler was a 12-game winner for the Knights in 2008 and was 5-3 with a 2.81 ERA for Charlotte at the time of the call.  Whisler took the place of his friend, former roommate and former Knights pitcher Lance Broadway, who the White Sox traded to the Mets organization.  Left-handed pitcher Mike Johnston was recalled from Double-A Birmingham to fill Whisler's roster spot.  This is Johnston's first year in pro baseball since 2006.  He has been out of the game the past two seasons due to injury.


SEASON HIGHS: The Knights set a season high Monday vs. Toledo in runs scored and tied a season high in extra base hits.  The 13 runs scored were the most by the team this season and beat their previous high of 11 which occurred on May 25 at Columbus.  They also tied their season high in extra-base hits with 8.  The only previous game with 8 extra-base hits also occurred on May 25 at Columbus.  The team's 19 hits were the second-most they have had in a game this season.


CLIPPERS SAILING TO CLEVELAND: On Monday, the Indians recalled Tony Sipp for the second time this season, putting eight Opening Day Clippers on the active Cleveland roster with an additional one on the Indians DL (Aaron Laffey). Josh Barfield was recalled yesterday to replace the injured Asdrubal Cabrera.  Of Cleveland's active 25, 12 have played with Columbus at some point this season.

WHY, IT'S WYATT!: Wyatt Toregas had his nine-game hitting streak stopped on Tuesday, but responded with a 2-run homer last night.  The streak is tied with Michael Brantley for the longest by a Clipper this season.  Toregas is hit .294 (10-34) during the stretch that started on May 21 at Buffalo.  The Clipper catcher also had a 13-game on-base streak, dating back to May 14 vs. Lehigh Valley, his second on-base streak over 10 games (11 games from 4/14-5/5).

TURNING IT UP TO ELEVEN: Monday night the Clippers tied the franchise record by scoring 11 runs in the 3rd inning vs. Norfolk (fourth time, last on 6/7/92 vs. Rochester).  They sent 15 batters to the plate in the inning, collecting seven hits, four walks and a hit batter.  Andy Marte led the charge, going 2-2 with a double and 4 RBI.  Matt LaPorta knocked in a run with a single in each of his two at bats, while Wyatt Toregas and Tony Graffanino each had 2-run doubles.


K CORNER: Wade Davis tied a Bulls Triple-A record yesterday with 13 strikeouts in six innings in a 5-2 loss to Toledo.  Jason Hammel, now with the Rockies, also collected 13 strikeouts at Toledo on August 16, 2006.  The 13 strikeouts were the most by a Bulls pitcher in Triple-A at Durham Bulls Athletic Park.  What makes the effort most impressive is that Davis didn't have a strikeout in the 1st inning, meaning 13 of his final 15 outs were K's.  As a whole, Durham fanned 17 hitters in the defeat.

HOME SWEET HOME: Despite the loss, Durham still leads the IL in home victories (20-9) and is 2nd in the IL in home winning percentage (.690).  Durham is

4-2 on an eight-game home stand after taking three of four from Mets affiliate Buffalo and splitting two against Toledo. 

COMEBACK KIDS: Durham was seeking its 16th win in which the opponent had scored first.  Durham got within 3-2 yesterday after trailing 3-0 before Dusty Ryan's two-run homer with two outs in the 8th provided the final margin.  Durham is 15-16 when the opponent scores first this year.  To put this in perspective, last year the Bulls were 11-45 when the opponent scored first.  Durham is 11-8 at home when the opponent scores the first run, and already has four home wins when trailing after the 7th inning.   On Tuesday the Bulls won 6-5 in 11 over Toledo, scoring three in the bottom of the 9th to send the game to extras.  When Durham does score first, the Bulls are 19-3.

GOING DEEP: Durham allowed three homers yesterday while not hitting one.  Durham still has an IL-best 54 homers this season.  The Bulls are 23-7 in games in which they homer, 11-12 when they don't. 


ROAD TO THE SHOW (TRAFFIC JAM): The Gwinnett Braves lost some of their best prospects on Wednesday, including top prospect Tommy Hanson. Hanson earned a promotion to Atlanta after future Hall-of-Fame left-hander Tom Glavine was released. The top prospect in the Braves organization is scheduled to officially join the Atlanta roster prior to making his major league debut on Saturday. Outfielder Brian Barton also made the downtown commute, spelling Jeff Francouer in right field late in Wednesday night's game with Chicago. Also gone from Gwinnett is Charlie Morton. The right-handed starter, along with Double-A prospects Gorkys Hernandez and Jeff Locke, were traded to Pittsburgh for Nate McLouth. Those moves are in addition to the recent promotions of right-handed pitcher Kris Medlen, right-handed pitcher Manny Acosta, outfielder Gregor Blanco and utility infielder Diory Hernandez. Since Medlen's promotion on May 21, outfielder Jordan Schafer and right-handed pitcher James Parr are the only Atlanta players to have been optioned to Gwinnett. Jorge Campillo and Tom Glavine also made rehab appearances with the G-Braves.

SWELTERING SAMMONS: Catcher Clint Sammons' bat has heated up in recent days. The Gwinnett County native was 6-39 (.154) with just one multi-hit game in his first 11 games through May 18, but Sammons is 16-42 (.381) with five multi-hit games in his last 11 games. In his first 11 games, Sammons hit one homer and drove in four runs, in his last 11, Sammons has hit two homers and driven in 14 runs. Sammons recorded three doubles on June 3 at Rochester to become the first Gwinnett Brave to hit more than two doubles in a game (there have been seven different G-Braves to pick up a pair of doubles in a game). Also on June 3, Sammons became the fourth G-Brave to collect four hits in a game.

MR. COOL CANIZARES: Barbaro Canizares was 3-4 on June 3 at Rochester. It was his seventh multi-hit game in his last 10 games. Canizares has raised his average from .315 on May 24 to .332 following Wednesday night's game. His 68 hits are the 2nd most in the International League and his .332 average is the 4th-best in the League. He has played in a team-high 52 games and his 205 at-bats are the tied (with SWB's Todd Linden) for the 4th-most in the IL (Norfolk's Justin Christian leads the League with 216 at-bats). Canizares' 15 doubles and 33 RBI also lead the G-Braves. Canizares has only struck out 27 times in the entire season or once every 13 at-bats (205 AB, 27 K).


MCCUTCHEN MOVING ON UP: Indians center fielder and top prospect Andrew McCutchen received the first Major League promotion of his career on Wednesday, June 3, when he was called to Pittsburgh following the Pirates trade of OF Nate McLouth to the Atlanta Braves. McCutchen, who was also recently named the 2009 Indianapolis Indians "Player of the Month" for May, is likely to take over starting duties in center field for Pittsburgh. McCutchen was hitting .303 (61-201) with 10 doubles, eight triples, four home runs, 20 RBI, 10 stolen bases, 41 runs scored, a .361 on-base percentage and a .493 slugging percentage with the Tribe at the time of his promotion. In the month of May the right-hander reached base in 24 of 29 games, batted .304 (43-139), collected nine multi-hit games, scored 22 runs, belted three home runs, posted 14 RBI and drew 11 walks. The 22-year old's stats from this May are quite similar to last May, when he was also awarded the Indians' Player of the Month Award after batting .304 (34-112), with 16 runs, two home runs, 10 RBI and 14 walks en route to a Triple-A All-Star Game appearance.

EXTRA MARKS THE SPOT: Indianapolis' 4-1 loss to Lehigh Valley on Tuesday marked the first game this season in which the Tribe failed to record an extra-base hit.  The  Indians' impressive extra-base hit streak thus ended at 50 games in-a-row this season and 84 games in-a-row dating back to July 29, 2008. Indianapolis' extra-base hit season total still stands at 145, including 94 doubles, 36 home runs and their 15 triples which rank 3rd-best in the International League.

WITHOUT WALKS: Three Tribe hurlers have been among the best in the International League when it comes to having a large amount of strikeouts and few amount of walks. RHP Chris Bootcheck (33 SO vs. 4 BB), RHP Juan Mateo (23 SO vs. 3 BB) and RHP Virgil Vasquez (44 SO vs. 8 BB) all have at least five strikeouts for every one walk this season and have combined for 100 strikeouts and just 15 walks in 114 innings pitched.

A "CLOSER" LOOK: In his last three appearances Indians closer Chris Bootcheck has allowed just one hit and one walk, while striking out four in three innings of work. The Tribe right-hander has really only had two bad outings for the Tribe all season: April 21 at Toledo (5 ER in 1.0 IP) and May 12 at Rochester (3 ER in 0.1 IP). If you were to take away those two outings, Bootcheck would have a 1.17 ERA (3 ER in 23.0 IP), just two walks, and 32 strikeouts in 23.0 innings pitched. Currently Bootcheck still has the 2nd-best strikeout (33) to walk (4) ratio (8.25) in the International League of pitchers with at least 30 strikeouts, ranking behind Syracuse's J.D. Martin (38 strikeouts vs. 4 walks).


GETTIN 'MIGGY WITH IT!: INF Miguel Cairo has hit in 10 of 11 G (.386-2-8) since joining LHV -- and has now hit 2 HR in his last 15 AB (2 HR in a span of 7 AB) after going 850 AB without one! Thursday, he hit his first HR since 7/28/05, when he hit one as a Met in Minute Maid Park against RHP Chad Qualls). In the Majors, he's gone 813 AB since that HR, which, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, is the longest active homerless streak in the Majors Leagues.

WHO'S HOT (BATTERS): INF Pablo Ozuna, who had a 2009 LHV high 13-G hitting streak 5/3-5/18, has 3 straight multi-hit G (6-11, 4 2B, 3 R) and has hit safely in 21 of his last 26 G (33-94, .351-0-6, 16 R)... OF Jason Ellison has hit safely in his last 7 G (9-26, .346, 2 2B)... OF Jeremy Slayden hit safely in 7 of his last 8 G (9-33, .273-1-5, 2B)... 3B David Newhan has a 6-game RBI streak and has hit in 15 of last 19 G (21-62, .339-4-11, 9 BB)... C Paul Hoover has hit safely in 5 of his last 7 GS (8-24, .333-1-3, 2 2B)... OF Rich Thompson is 11-12 in SB (92%) and is now 36-39 (92%) in LHV career... After starting the first 35 games without an error at SS, INF Jason Donald committed his first 2 errors at shortstop.

WHO'S HOT (PITCHERS): RHP Mike Koplove had his streak of 15+ G and 18.2 consecutive IP without an ER snapped on a 2-run HR by Chris Richard on Saturday. Still, he's allowed just 2 ER in his last 19 G (1-2, 0.84, 6 SV, 2 H, 21.1 IP, 13 H, 7 R, 10 BB, 28 K)... RHP Tyler Walker had his season-starting 13.0 scoreless IP streak snapped in his 9th appearance on Friday. In his first 8 G, he went 12.2 IP and only allowed five batters to reach safely: 2 singles (including a hit-and-run dribbler), 2 BB and a HB. He retired 37 of 44 BF (84.1%)... LHP Cedrick Bowers has allowed just 1 R in his last 9 G (0-1, 0.78, 4 H, 11.2 IP, 3 H, ER,

9 BB, 11 K)... Since winning his first ML start May 16 at Washington, RHP Drew Carpenter is 2-0, 0.89 in 2 GS with LHV (20.1 IP, 17 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 12 K).


HOPPER'S JINX: OF Norris Hopper went 94 consecutive at-bats without striking out before Bats radio broadcaster Jim Kelch jinxed him in the 2nd inning last night by pointing out Hopper's streak. Before last night, Hopper last struck out April 24 in Toledo, in his first at-bat. In 2007, before his injury-plagued 2008 season, he struck out just 36 times in 339 AB between Louisville, Single-A Sarasota, and Cincinnati


FLYING HIGH: RHP Homer Bailey and LHP Matt Maloney have been the most consistent starting pitchers on the Bats staff this season. 15 of their 20 starts are quality starts. Bailey's ERA has steadily declined after posting a 13.50 ERA during his first start (it's now 3.79) while Maloney's ERA has gone above 3.00 just once all season. Both pitchers have won the IL Pitcher of the Week award (Bailey, 4/20-4/26 and Maloney, 5/11-5/17) and Maloney was also named Cincinnati's Minor League Pitcher of the Month for April.

CONNECT FOUR: With last night's victory, Louisville has now won four games in a row for the first time since they won four straight May 9-12 (vs. SWB, 5/9-5/11; @ DUR, 5/12). It also ties their longest winning streak of the season (4/17-4/21, 5/9-5/11,5/31-6/3).

SUMMER, SUMMER, SUMMER TIME (3-0): With the summer fast approaching, the Bats are hoping June brings a winning record.  Three games into June and they have yet to lose (3-0).  Louisville has had losing Junes in three of the last five years (2004, 13-15; 2005, 14-15; 2008, 13-15). However, the team had two winning Junes back-to-back in 2006-07; they went 22-7 in 2006, one shy of the franchise mark for most wins in a month (August 2008, 23-7) and 15-14 in 2007.


HIGH TIDES: The Tides enter play today with a 35-17 record, which is tied with Class-A Lynchburg for the 2nd-best mark among full season teams in Minor League Baseball, trailing only the 32-14 mark of Class-A Brevard County (.696 winning %). The Tides have won 17 of their last 22 games and 23 of their last 30, and Norfolk's current winning percentage of .673 would shatter the Tides franchise record of .610, set when the 1975 Tidewater Tides went 86-55.

THIS IS BIRDLAND: With the promotion of catcher Matt Wieters to Baltimore on Friday, seven of the 25 players currently on the Orioles active roster have played with the Tides this season (Matt Albers, Brad Bergesen, Jason Berken, Dave Hernandez, Rich Hill, Nolan Reimold and Wieters). In addition, three other players (Jim Johnson, Melvin Mora and Ty Wigginton) all played in Norfolk before making their major league debuts, and two others that played in Norfolk (Lou Montanez and Alfredo Simon) are currently on the O's disabled list. Of the 10 players that were listed in the starting lineup for Norfolk's season opener at Durham on April 9, seven are not currently active on the Tides roster, as four are in Baltimore (Bergesen, Montanez, Reimold and Wieters), two are on Norfolk's disabled list (Donnie Murphy and Scott Moore), and Mike Costanzo is currently on Double-A Bowie's roster.

HIT MAN: With another hit in yesterday's contest, Oscar Salazar extended his current hitting streak to 10 games. Over that stretch Salazar has hit .455 (20-44) with three home runs and 10 RBI, and he also has seven multiple hit contests during that span. Salazar leads the IL and is tied for 4th in all of Minor League Baseball with a .378 average, while his 74 hits this season lead the League and are 3rd among all minor leaguers. The 30-year-old has hit safely in 44 of the 49 games he's played in this season and he's already registered hit streaks of six games, 10 games (current) and 18 games this year.


JOHN SMOLTZ STARTS ON FRIDAY AT MCCOY: Friday night is Bat Night at McCoy Stadium (for the first 4,000 young fans) when the PawSox host Louisville at 7:05 p.m. That night, thanks to their big brothers in Boston, the PawSox will send one of the game's all-time great pitchers to the mound in hopes of silencing those Bats - the Louisville Bats that is. RHP John Smoltz, the only pitcher in major league history to have at least 200 career wins (210 to be exact) and at least 150 saves (154), will make his fourth injury rehab start - and his first for the PawSox - as he continues his comeback from right shoulder surgery (torn labrum) almost one year ago (last June 10). Smoltz, who turned 42 on May 15, spent the past 20 seasons with the Atlanta Braves (1988-2008) - becoming one of just 7 pitchers ever with 20 or more seasons for a single club - compiling a 210-147 record along with 154 SV and a 3.26 ERA in 708 big league games (466 starts). Furthermore, his post-season numbers are among the best ever as he holds the major league record for career playoff wins (15) and strikeouts (194) while posting a 15-4, 2.65 post-season record in 40 career playoff games (27 starts) along with 4 saves. He has appeared in 13 major league postseasons from 1991-93, 1995-99, and 2001-05 and pitched in five different World Series with the Braves in 1991, 1992, 1995, 1996, and 1999 (winning the World Series in '95).

MORE ON SMOLTZ' CAREER: John is an 8-time National League All-Star in 1989, 1992-93, 1996, 2002-03, 2005, and 2007 and was the 1996 National League Cy Young Award winner when he went 24-8 with a 2.94 ERA in 35 starts for the Braves. Six years later he led the majors with 55 saves to earn the N.L. Rolaids Relief Award. As such, Smoltz became one of only two pitchers ever to have both a 20-win season and a 50-save season during the course of their career joining Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley who won 20 games with the Red Sox in 1978 and saved 51 games for Oakland in 1991. Smoltz, who was signed as a free agent by the Red Sox on January 13, 2009, has made three minor league rehab starts this May and all three have resulted in franchise-record crowds (first at Augusta, next in New Hampshire, and lastly in Greenville). Overall in his 3 starts he is 0-0 with a 1.59 ERA (2 ER in 11.1 IP).

A HALL OF FAME LIST OF REHABBERS: Smoltz joins an illustrious group of Major League stars who have spent time with the PawSox on an injury rehab assignment over the years. The impressive list includes (in part): Rocco Baldelli (2009), Marty Barrett (1989), Ellis Burks (1989), Jose Canseco (1995 & '96), Sean Casey (2008), Roger Clemens (1993 & '95), Dennis Eckersley (1998), Nomar Garciaparra (2001), Mike Greenwell (1995 & '96), Mark Kotsay (2009), Mike Lowell (2008), Ramon Martinez (1999), Daisuke Matsuzaka (2008 & '09), Willie McGee (1995), Kevin Mitchell (1996), Trot Nixon (2004), David Ortiz (2008), Manny Ramirez (2002), Bret Saberhagen (1997 & 2000), Curt Schilling (2005 & '07), Bob Stanley (1988), Mike Timlin (2007 & '08), John Valentin (2001), and Kevin Youkilis (2009).


WALK THIS WAY: Shortstop Trevor Plouffe hit the 21st walk-off home run in Frontier Field history Tuesday night in the bottom of the 9th inning.  Plouffe is the first Red Wing to hit a walk-off home run this season and the 17th person to accomplish this feat.  Since Rochester changed affiliations to the Twins in 2003 the Red Wings have had 17 walk-off home runs (Wings had only four walk-off home runs the first six years of the stadium).

CARDIAC KIDS: Tuesday night was the second time this season that Rochester has captured a win in their final at-bat (2-3 record in last at-bat games this season).  Going into the 2009 season, Rochester has six consecutive seasons (2008 15-10 record, 2007 11-10 record, 2006 20-12 record, 2005 11-6 record, 2004 11-6 record & 2003 10-7 record) with a winning record in games decided in last at-bats.  It's the first time Rochester has done this since 1979 when Red Wings records begin.  Since 2003, the Red Wings have an 80-56 record in games decided in last at-bats.

JUNE IS OUR MONTH: The Red Wings have had a winning month of June every year of the Minnesota Twins affiliation (six consecutive seasons).  During the Twins affiliation Rochester holds a 98-81 record in the month of June.  Since 1980, when month-to-month records started being kept, Rochester has had only five 20-win months but two of those have happened in June (1991, 20-11 record and 1986, 20-11 record).


GETTING SQUEEZED BY THE 'CUSE: Despite finishing 18.0 games behind the Yankees in 2008 and currently trailing SWB by 6.0 games in the standings this season, the Chiefs have played the Yankees tough.  Since SWB swept a four game series at Alliance Bank Stadium from July 29 - August 1, the series has been all Chiefs.  Syracuse has won seven out of 10 against SWB and has outscored the Yankees 40-31.

TAKING AIM ON THE FRANCHISE MARK: Kei Igawa can pull within one win of the all time Scranton/Wilkes-Barre record for wins in a career with a victory in the second game of the series vs. Syracuse.  The left-hander currently sits at 24-11 in his SWB career and is two victories away from tying and three away from setting the franchise mark for career victories by a Scranton/Wilkes-Barre pitcher.  The record is currently held by Evan Thomas, who went 26-25 in 72 career games, 67 as a starter.  Igawa has made 47 appearances in a Scranton/Wilkes-Barre uniform with 45 of them coming as a starter.  In 2008 he set a franchise mark in for the most wins by a left-handed starter and tied Joe Roa's standard for most wins in season by a SWB pitcher with 14.

NOT COOKING AT HOME: At 19-9 the Yankees have the IL's best road record in 2009.  The home cooking at PNC Field in 2009 is not quite as tasty as it is away from home.  SWB is 13-11 in the home park thus far and while the pitching has enjoyed better numbers (a 2.64 ERA compared to 3.71 away from home), the Yankees are hitting 31 points higher on the road (.285) then they are at PNC Field (.254).  The scoring has been a big difference as well with 179 runs scored on the road compared to 108 at PNC Field.  Scranton/Wilkes-Barre is averaging 6.4 runs per game on the road and 4.5 at PNC Field.

IT'S BEEN A WHILE: Paul Bush will make his second appearance for Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Thursday night when he takes the hill for Game 3 of the four game series in the role of starting pitcher, a position not totally foreign to the right-hander who will be making his first start since July 10, 2008 when he took the hill for the GCL Braves as a part of his recovery from "Tommy John" surgery the season before.  The last Triple-A start for Bush was with the Richmond Braves September 2, 2006, a no-decision vs. Charlotte.


SOLANO REPLACES HERRERA: The Chiefs made a catching change on Thursday when they recalled from Double-A Harrisburg 23-year-old Jhonatan Solano.  The native of Columbia signed as a free agent in 2005 and was batting .280 with 1 HR and 11 RBI in 26 games for the Senators this season.

DOYNE JOINS CHIEFS: The Chiefs signed free agent right-handed pitcher Cory Doyne this week after he spent the past two seasons in the Baltimore Orioles organization.  In 2007 he was an IL All Star when he saved 29 games and recorded a 2.23 ERA with Norfolk.  He appeared in only 17 games last season due to injuries.

ELDRED HEATS UP: Chiefs first baseman Brad Eldred hit three home runs this week after hitting only 5 through his first 45 games.  However, he was already batting over .300 and was approaching a career-high in doubles when he hit his eighteenth this past week.  His previous high was 31doubles in 2004 when he split the season between Lynchburg and Altoona.

CLIPPARD CONTINUES HIS DOMINANCE: Right-handed relief pitcher Tyler Clippard continued to perform in his new role as a reliever this season.  In his last 6 appearances over 9.1 innings he has given up only 3 hits with 9 strikeouts and only 1 walk.  Prior to this season Clippard was used exclusively as a starter, making 131 consecutive starts.


ON FIRE: CF Don Kelly saw his hit streak end at 13 games Tuesday, but he still owns an 18-game on-base streak. During the hit streak, he hit .490 (25-51) with a HR, 5 2B and 6 RBI. Nine of the 13 games were multi-hit games. On Monday Kelly was named the International League Batter of the Week for May 25-31. The 13-game hit streak tied Kelly with 1B Ryan Roberson for the team's longest this season. Kelly is 2nd in the IL in batting average at .352, and 2nd in on-base percentage at .421. He has been one of the bigger bright spots on the Hens this year. He has played 31 games in CF despite having played there just twice the past three years, and has yet to make an error at the position.

CHANGE OF PACE: The Hens started the season as one of the International League's hottest teams, going 8-2 in their first ten games. They have since lost 30 of their last 43 games to fall to 21-32 on the season. In their first ten games, the Hens averaged 5.1 runs/game and allowed 2.8 runs/game. Since then, the offense is averaging 4.19 runs/game, while the pitching is surrendering 5.37 runs/game. The Hens this season had a 10-game losing streak, which is their longest since an 11-game losing streak in June, 1999. Also, the 20-31 start to this season is the worst for the Hens since 2001 (the last year at Skeldon Stadium), when the team started 19-34 and went 19-37 before winning their 20th game.

CURSE OF THE 1-HITTER: The Hens have combined for two 1-hitters this season, first on April 14 at Louisville (Chris Lambert - 8 IP, Freddy Dolsi - 1 IP), then again on May 13 vs. Pawtucket (Eddie Bonine - 9 IP, Casey Fien - 1 IP). Interestingly, in four starts since his 1-hitter, Lambert has gone 0-3 with a 10.20 ERA, while in three starts since his, Bonine is 0-3 with a 7.46 ERA.

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International League Stories from June 4, 2009

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