Welcome to Appy Astros, a blog dedicated to following current & former Greeneville Astros, the Appalachian League affiliate of the Houston Astros. Here you will find reports on current G-Stros, updates on the development of former G-Stros and occasionally an update on what has happened to the guys who have hung up their spikes.

Friday, September 6, 2013

All Good Things Must Come To An End

The G-Stros season ended last night.  This team was fun to watch and they brought playoff baseball back to Greeneville. It was an enjoyable season. I wish these players the best of luck as their journey continues.

But I am not just posting about the season ending, I am also announcing it is time for this blog to end. Just over three years ago I started this blog with a mission to follow the current and former G-Stros. I started it because I was following those guys anyway and thought others might have some interest in what I had to say.  It has been a fun and interesting three years. 

There are multiple factors that make now the right time for me to end this and I won't bore you with the details.  It is the right decision for me and I am at peace with my decision. I am looking forward to returning to being just a fan.

Over the last three plus years, I made great friends in the Astros blogging community.  People like Jayne at WhatTheHeckBobby, Brooks, and Tim at the CrawfishBoxes, Mike at Farmstros, Bryan & James at AstrosCounty, Terri who post in several places and the whole gang in the bus ride forum at OWA.  There are many more and I plan on keeping those relationships going and might just pop up on one of their sites for a guest post someday.  Several have left that option open for me, and I appreciate it. They quality minor league coverage provided by these folks makes it very easy for me to step back and enjoy being just a fan.

I want to say thanks for taking the time to visit me little section of the internet. Your visits, feedback, re-tweets of my material and comments have been the fuel that has kept me going.  I still look forward to discussing baseball with folks on twitter and via email but I will no longer be doing any writing about it. 

Go G-Stros.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Appy Astros Alumni of the Month: August 2013

Well another summer is drawing to a close.  Playoff baseball has returned to Greeneville and many of the Astros affiliates are preparing for their playoffs to start.  Let's look at the former G-Stros in affiliated ball and see who stood out in August.

Tri City ValleyCats:

Pitcher of the Month
Gonzalo Sanudo appeared in seven games in August and got six saves.  He struck out 17 batters in 11 1/3 innings pitched. He allowed just three hits and one walk. 

Honorable Mention goes to Michael Feliz is having a break out season in Tri-City.  In August, he pitched in five games (four starts) and had an ERA of 1.75.  He struck out 26 batters in 25 2/3 innings pitched.

Tyler Brunnemann also gets a nod.  He appeared in seven games after his call up from Greeneville.  In those appearances, he struck out 10 batters in 8 1/3 innings and allowed just one earned run.

Hitter of the Month
Tyler White hit .265 in August and had more walks (9) than strike outs (7).   

Quad Cities River Bandits

 Pitcher of the Month
Three relievers will share the award for this month.

Andrew Walter appeared in five games (10 1/3 IP) and had a perfect 0.00 ERA. He fanned 10 batters.  

Mitchell Lambson appeared in eight games (18 1/3 IP) and only allowed one run for a 0.49 ERA with 25 strike outs.  He allowed just nine hits and four walks for the month.

Jamaine Cotton appeared in eight games (21 IP) and had an impressive 0.86 ERA with two saves.  He only struck out 12 but he only allowed 13 hits.

Hitter of the Month
Carlos Correa hit .336 for August with a .430 on base percentage and 13 extra base hits.

Honorable Mention goes to Rio Ruiz who hit .298 for the month and had 17 extra base hits.

Lancaster JetHawks 

Pitcher of the Month
Michael Dimock appeared in eight games (14 2/3 IP) and only allowed two earned runs (1.23 ERA).  He struck out 14 batters while only allowing three walks.

Hitter of the Month
Delino DeShields hit .365 in 23 games this month with an impressive on base percentage of .455.  He also stole 11 bases in 13 attempts.

Corpus Christi Hooks

Pitcher of the Month
Carlos Quevedo had a great month out of the CC bullpen.  He didn't allow a run in 8 appearances (16 IP). He allowed just five walks and five hits while striking out 18 batters.  

Honorable Mention goes to Michael Foltynewicz who maintained a respectable 3.63 ERA in August.  It appears he is beginning to tire some as his strike out numbers reduce (just 13 in 22 1/3 IP) but he is still pitching well.

Luis Cruz has shown he belongs in AA.  In his four appearances since arriving in CC, he has a 0.53 ERA in 17 innings pitched.  He has struck out 21 batters during that time. 

Hitter of the Month
Luis Alvarez gets the nod this month not because of his average in Corpus Christ (.235 for August in six games) but because in a span of about a month and a half, he moved up from SS-A ball to A to Hi-A to AA.  That is a rare four level season and deserves notice.

Oklahoma City RedHawks

Pitcher of the Month
Pat Urckfitz appeared in nine games for the RedHawks bullpen in August.  He allowed a 2.08 ERA in 8 2/3 innings pitched.

Hitter of the Month
Rene Garcia continues to represent himself well with the bat.  He hit .258 in 17 games after his promotion from CC.  He also had thrown out four out of nine base runners so far.

Non Astros Affiliates

Pitcher of the Month
Arcenio Leon pitched in 11 games for Huntsville (AA-Brewers) in August.  He allowed just two runs in 13 2/3 innings out of the bullpen for a 1.32 ERA. 

Hitter of the Month
Jordan Parraz hit .319 for New Britan (AA- Twins).

It wasn't a stellar month for former G-Stros in the big league. So we are going to leave these honors vacant for the month. 

Eyewitness Report: Greeneville 1 - Kingsport 3 - Playoffs Begin WIth A Loss

Last night I took in the first game of the Appy League western division playoffs at Pioneer Park. It was nice to have playoff baseball back in Greeneville for the first time in nine years.  Here are some of my observations from the game.

On The Mound:

Jandel Gustave got the start for Greeneville. He got off to a rough start as he wasn't quite hitting the right spots for the home plate ump in the first.  Later in the game he appeared to be getting those calls but he didn't get them in the first inning.  After giving up two runs on three hits and a walk in the first inning, he settled down and pitched the next four innings allowing just one run on three hits, a walk and a hit batter.  Gustave struck out seven on the night.

Joe Musgrove relieved Gustave and pitched the final four innings in a dominate fashion.  He didn't allow a single base runner while striking out four K-Mets. 

At The Plate:

For the month of August, Brett Phillips was two for 15 at the plate.  He was rusty after missing almost half the month with a hand injury.  Last night, he appeared to shake off the rust and went three for four at the plate.  After a bloop hit fell for him in the third, he had line drive hits in the fifth and the seventh.

Juan Santana and Brian Holberton had the only extra base hit for the G-Stros.  Each had a double.

The G-Stros were 0-9 with runners in scoring position on the night and that sealed their doom.  The most frustrating inning was the fifth.  Tanner Mathis and Phillips led off the inning with back to back singles.  The next batter tried to move them over on a bunt but Mathis was erased at third.  The next batter hit a fly ball to right which allowed Phillips to advance to third.  The next batter struck out. Greeneville has done well at manufacturing runs with small ball this season but they couldn't get it done last night.

In The Field:

Two plays deserve mention here.  First, Alfredo Gonzalez made a diving catch of a bunt in foul territory in the first inning.  Secondly, Thomas Lindauer made a very nice play ranging deep in the hole behind second to throw out a K-Met in the same batter in the seventh.

The G-Stros bats just couldn't get the big hit tonight.  The pitching and the defense held up their end of the bargain.  Greeneville is in a 0-1 hole in the best of three series heading to Kingsport.  They face elimination tonight and will be sending Chris Lee to the mound. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

Eyewitness Report 8/29/13: Greeneville 2 Danville 3

My son and I took in the G-Stros game last night. Greeneville lose in 10 innings but we had to leave after 7 1/2 because alas it is a school night.  Despite the loss, the G-Stros clinched a playoff spot by virtue of Elizabethton losing their game.  Here are my observations from the game:

On The Mound

Luis Ordosgoitti took the ball to start the game.  He went five innings giving up four hits, two runs (only one was earned), one walk and one hit batter.  He struck out three.  Ordosgoitti threw pretty well.  There were times his curve was very sharp and other times it didn't break.  The one hit batter was on a curve that didn't break.  Yet overall, his control was pretty good.  He only went to three balls on one batter.  It was the one batter he walked. 

Kevin Ferguson relieved Ordosgoitti in the sixth and pitched three innings.  He was effective allowing just one hit.  He only used 35 pitches in his three innings of work.

At The Plate

Here are my observations from the seven innings I saw.  

Edwin Gomez is living right.  He hit two balls right at people that resulted in errors.  Both were with two outs and allowed a run to score.  The first was a line drive to right center that bounced off the right fielders glove and the was a hard hit ground ball that ate up the second baseman.

Thomas Lindauer had the at bat of the night in my opinion.  Leading off the fifth inning, he got in to an 0-2 hole.  He then batted to extend the at bat to 11 pitches before reaching on an E6.  He went to second on a wild pitch and scored on the E9.  Lindauer also lead off the seventh with a single and scored the other Greeneville run.

Chase McDonald had a single and a double in the game. 

Wallace Gonzalez was really struggling.  In his first three at bats, he struck out swinging each time on a combined 10 pitches.  The catcher was setting up outside on every pitch and Gonzalez couldn't reach them.

Brett Phillips is still shaking some rust off from his injury time.  He also struck out in each of his first two at bats.

In The Field

Phillips shows no rust in center.  He gets great jumps on balls hit to center and shows good range as well.

Juan Santana was a vacuum at second base.  He had eight assist and one caught pop in the first eight innings.  One ground out was a rare 4-1 put out.  The pop out was a catch made near the right field line behind first.

Chase McDonald made two nice saves of throws that were off line from third. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Eyewitness Report: 8/26/13 Greeneville 3 - Bluefield 2

Sorry for the delayed nature of this report. This is the first time I have had to really sit down and focus on what I saw last night.  With school back in session, we didn't stay for the last two innings and thus missed the walk off grounder.  Let's look at my observations for the first seven innings. 

In The Stands:

It was good to see Astros GM Jeff Luhnow in the stands for the game. 

On The Mound:

Frederick Tiburcio pitched 5 2/3 innings of good ball.  In the first five innings, he had just allowed three base runners and had thrown just 66 pitches (unofficial count).  In the fifth, he got the first out on a 1-3 come backer.  He then walked his first and only batter of the night. That runner stole second and then advanced to third on a pick of throw that ended in center field.  He struck out the next batter before allowing a single that plated the first run.  The base runner advanced around the bases on stole bases.  The final batter Tiburcio faced hit a gound ball to short that Chase McDonald smothered with a dive but he couldn't recover to get to the base him self and Tiburcio didn't get over in time to cover and the runner was safe and the tying run scored. 

Tiburcio finished with 84 pitches unofficially.  He struck out six batters.  Two of those were strike outs at balls in the dirt that required the catcher to throw down to first.  His control was pretty good.  Other than the one walk, he didn't go to three balls and any other batter. 

Austin Chrismon finished the sixth on one pitch and then pitched the last three innings. 

At The Plate:

First of all, it was nice to see Brett Phillips back in the line up.  He reached base three times with a double and a pair of walks.  He also had a sac bunt. 

Tanner Mathis had two singles in the lead off role.  He too had a sac bunt. 

Thomas Lindauer had two singles and also walked.  He scored two runs. 

No Astro was credited with an RBI.  The first run scored on a 4-6-3 double play with the bases loaded.  The second run scored when the ball squirted away from the Bluefield shortstop for an error.  The final run scored when it looked like Brian Holberton had grounded into his third double play but the short stop threw the ball away allowing the winning run to score.  Good things happen when you put the ball in play. 

In The Field:

There were several nice plays made in the field last night.  Tiburcio made a behind the back snag of a sharp grounder (ala Jordan Lyles) in the second inning.  

Marc Wik made a nice running catch in right field to end the fourth. 

Brett Phillips patrolled center and was effective in his return to action. 

The Astros struggled with the team speed of Bluefield.  Bluefield had four stolen bases in five attempts.  They also advanced a base on a blown pick off move. 

Odd Game Delay

The start of the game was delayed because the batters boxes were not lined up correctly.  They had to scrape the lines up and start over.