Winston-Salem Dash: Game Notes (september 3 At Down East)
The Dash wrap up the regular season at Down East on Monday. First pitch is set for 12:05 p.m..
WINSTON-SALEM DASH (42-25, 83-54) at Down East Wood Ducks (24-45, 59-80)
LHP John Parke (5-4, 4.16 ERA) vs. RHP Emerson Martinez (5-11, 4.08 ERA)
12:05 p.m. - Grainger Stadium (Kinston, N.C.)
Game #138 (Away Game #70)
DASH DROP PENULTIMATE GAME
After the Dash shut out Down East on Saturday, Alec Hansen began his start on Sunday with two scoreless innings. But, the Wood Ducks plated three runs in the third and one in the fourth to take a 4-1 lead. Hansen tied a season-high with seven strikeouts. Winston-Salem was held to just two runs, one of which was a solo home run from Ti'Quan Forbesin the ninth inning. Hunter Schryver allowed two runs, ending the Dash bullpen's scoreless streak at 14.2 innings.
CREAM OF THE CROP
Winston currently boasts nine of the top prospects in the Sox system per MLB Pipeline, including infielders NickMadrigal (No. 4), Gavin Sheets (No. 15) and Laz Rivera (No. 28), outfielders Luis Robert (No. 3), Blake Rutherford(No. 7) and Luis Gonzalez (No. 14), and right-handers Alec Hansen (No. 10), Tyler Johnson (No. 23) and Lincoln Henzman (No. 30).
While the Dash will not best the 2012 team in overall wins (87), the 2018 Winston-Salem Dash are now the second-best team in the Dash era (2009-present) with 83 wins, overtaking the 2010 team, which went 81-58 overall under manager Joe McEwing. While the Dash have played in the Mills Cup Championship Series twice, this year's club will try to be the first to claim a Carolina League title since the franchise changed its moniker to the Dash in 2009. Winston-Salem's last title came in 2003 as the Warthogs.
BALLOTS FOR BLAKE
Blake Rutherford is making a case to be named Carolina League MVP. The 21-year-old has helped lead the best offense in the league with 128 hits (T-2nd), 76 RBIs (2nd), a .293 average (5th) and a .439 slugging percentage (8th). A first-round pick by the New York Yankees in 2016, Rutherford was traded to the White Sox in 2017 along with Tyler Clippard, Ian Clarkin and Tito Polo in exchange for David Robertson, Todd Frazier and Tommy Kahnle.
BEST OF THE BEST
After sealing up a first-half Southern Division championship, Winston-Salem now has the fourth-best winning percentage in full-season Minor League Baseball with a .610 mark. Here's a look at the top teams:
1. Bowling Green Hot Rods
(Midwest League - A): 89-49 (.645)
2. Lakewood BlueClaws
(South Atlantic League - A): 87-50 (.635)
3. Rancho Cucamonga Quakes
(California League - A+): 86-53 (.619)
4. Winston-Salem Dash
(Carolina League - A+): 83-54 (.606)
MORE THAN LUCK FOR LUIS
After posting an .850 OPS in the first half with Kannapolis, Gonzalez has continued his impressive pace with Winston by posting a team-best .888 OPS. A former third-round pick out of the University of New Mexico, Gonzalez has also smacked 22 doubles, just five shy of the team leader (Sheets). Following a college career in which he had 53 more walks than strikeouts, the 22-year-old has posted the second-lowest strikeout rate (15.9%) on the Dash.
ANOTHER TITLE-WINNING HALF?
With just one game left in the regular season and a first-half title already on the ledger, Winston-Salem has the opportunity to win the second half. The Dash currently lead Buies Creek by one game for the top spot in the Southern Division in the second half. Winston has won both halves twice in the Dash era (2010 & 2012).
With a win or a Buies Creek loss, the Dash can clinch a second-half championship...The last time Winston-Salem won both halves was 2012, when the Dash went 44-25 in the first half and 43-26 in the second half...Winston-Salem eventually fell to Lynchburg in the Mills Cups Championship Series...There are currently 10 members of the Dash roster that were with Winston-Salem when the Dash won the first-half title on June 14.
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Carolina League Stories from September 3, 2018
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- Dash Clinch Second-Half Title with Win at Down East - Winston-Salem Dash
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- Winston-Salem Dash: Game Notes (september 3 At Down East) - Winston-Salem Dash
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