Sunday, May 30, 2010

Today's Lineup

Ryan Schimpf, DH
Ryan Goins, SS
Brad McElroy, LF
Mark Sobolewski, 3B
Sean Ochinko, 1B
A.J. Jimenez, C
Brad Glenn, RF
Chris Hopkins, CF
Oliver Dominguez, 2B
Chad Jenkins, Starting Pitcher

On the bench:  Karim Turkamani, Kenny Wilson, Balbino Fuenmayor, Eric Eiland.
Probable relievers:  Nestor Molina, Dustin Antolin, Steve Turnbull.

Bravo, Evan Pinsonnault!

Enjoy Evan's visit to the ballpark!

Sliding

I kept on finding the time to blog, but didn't know what to write.  That's not going to stop me today.

The Lugnuts are 28-21, losers of seven of 10 after winning eight in a row.

Frankly, I have no idea if this team is any good.

The starting pitching continues to be erratic.  Evan Crawford, so brilliant in the recent past, is slumping with his control and his confidence.  Ryan Shopshire is all over the place.  Dave Sever is just off the DL and just gave up six runs in one inning his last time on the mound.

Chad Jenkins is good.  I think Ryan Tepera is, too, though not to the extent of Jenkins.

Two solid starters do not make a winning team.

The offense continues to lead the league in batting average, but they're also leading the league in runners left on base.  Even in the games in which they collect nine base hits, like they've done the past two nights, there's still only one or two innings in which they break through and score runs.

Two more games here in South Bend, then back home to take on the best of the West:  Cedar Rapids and Quad Cities.

The sooner this slide is halted, the better.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day from the Lugnuts!

Mother's Day wishes from the Lansing Lugnuts coaching staff and players.

The Interviews Are Up!

Go here for my pre-game interviews thus far this year!

Next step:  getting up the game highlights each day.

Forget About it

Short-term memory, man.  Short-term memory.

Yesterday, featuring a blown four-run lead in the ninth inning and a wet walk-off Casey Beck wild pitch in the midst of a flash cloudburst, needs to be forgotten.  (By the way, remember what I was saying about Ryan Tepera yesterday and how I didn't know what to expect from him?  Five shutout innings works just fine in my book.  He was excellent... and the Lugnuts didn't win.  Man oh man.)

The rubber match against Fort Wayne is coming up in half an hour.

The lineup:

Ryan Schimpf, DH
Ryan Goins, SS
Mark Sobolewski, 3B
Brad Glenn, RF
Brad McElroy, LF
Sean Ochinko, C
Balbino Fuenmayor, 1B
Oliver Dominguez, 2B
Chris Hopkins, CF

Ryan Shopshire, Starting Pitcher

On the bench:  A.J. Jimenez, Kevin Nolan, Karim Turkamani, Eric Eiland.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Almost There

Three straight wins for the Lugnuts, including an impressive 9-4 steamrolling of Fort Wayne yesterday.

The good:  the offense, piling up 16 hits, and Chad Jenkins.
The not-so-good:  the offense, stranding 15 men on base.

Right now, the most uncertain aspect of this Lugnuts team is their starting pitching.  I have no idea what they're going to get out of their starter each day.  Take for example today's starter, Ryan Tepera.  Tep goes seven shutout innings in one start... then gets battered for six runs on nine hits... allows no earned runs in 5 1/3 innings... and then gives up seven runs in six innings.  He's an enigma to me right now, searching for a consistently fine efforts.

If Tepera is outstanding today, the Lugnuts win.  No question in my mind.  If he isn't... we'll see.

The same goes for the rest of the starting rotation.  Consistency is needed if the Lugnuts  wants to compete with Great Lakes and Lake County for the division in the first half.  The rest of the team looks just fine.

Starting lineup today:

Ryan Schimpf, 2B
Ryan Goins, SS
Brad McElroy, LF
Brad Glenn, RF
Sean Ochinko, 3B
A.J. Jimenez, C
Balbino Fuenmayor, 1B
Kevin Nolan, DH
Chris Hopkins, CF

Ryan Tepera, Starting Pitcher

On the bench:  Karim Turkamani, Oliver Dominguez, Mark Sobolewski, Eric Eiland.

Friday, May 7, 2010

May 7, 2010: LugNuggets

Think I enjoy having free time before a game?  Most definitely!

Next items on my agenda:  Getting all the pre-game interviews posted online and updating the highlight soundbytes page on the Lugnuts' website.  We'll see how long it takes me to get everything updated.

Here are today's LugNuggets:
  • Chad Jenkins is making his 6th start this season tonight, his 3rd against Fort Wayne.  Against everyone else in the MWL, he's 1-0 with a 2.84 ERA.  Unfortunately, he's 0-2 with a 5.91 ERA vs. the TinCaps.
  • Jenkins has whiffed 29 batters this year.  27 of those are swinging strikeouts.
  • Brad Glenn has reached base in all 21 games he's played this year.
  • Kenny Wilson may have missed every game in the month of May thus far, but he's still leading the Midwest League with six times hit-by-pitch.
  • Matt Wright faced 12 batters in the South Bend series.  He retired them all.
  • The Lugnuts hitters lead the Midwest League in batting average, at-bats, base hits, doubles, and stolen bases.  The Lugnuts pitchers lead the MWL in fewest walks issued.
  • Yesterday was the first day since April 29 in which the Lugnuts did not steal a base and was the first game since April 22 in which the Nuts did not attempt a steal.

Opener in Fort Wayne

Movie on the bus driving in today:  Van Wilder.

The Lugnuts are going to go with this lineup tonight against TinCaps left-hander Mike Watt (if, fingers crossed, the rain stays away):

Ryan Schimpf, 2B
Ryan Goins, SS
Mark Sobolewski, 3B
Brad Glenn, RF
Sean Ochinko, DH
A.J. Jimenez, C
Balbino Fuenmayor, 1B
Eric Eiland, LF
Chris Hopkins, CF

Chad Jenkins, Starting Pitcher

Notably, left-handed hitting Brad McElroy gets the day off today with the Fort Wayne lefty on the mound.

Also, the Lugnuts made a move today, activating catcher Karim Turkamani from the Disabled List and sending catcher Jack Murphy back to Florida.  Kenny Wilson, Matt Fields, and Dave Sever are still on the DL.  Fields has gone back to Dunedin to rehab.  Sever should be coming off the DL soon.

What can you do in 50 minutes?

If I could choose the games I'd broadcast, it'd go like this:

1)  A walk-off victory in the bottom of the ninth.
2)  A pitcher's duel.  Nothing like a tight 1-1 game into the late innings.
3)  Last night's Lugnuts win.

It was a virtuoso performance last night.  Evan Crawford started and gave up a single and a walk in five shutout innings.  Matt Wright set down six in a row.  Dustin Antolin set down six in a row.  Ballgame.  5-0, Lugnuts win

With everything rounded, the Lugnuts were basically at the plate for 76 minutes while the Silver Hawks' at-bats lasted 50 minutes total.

50 minutes for nine top halves of innings.  Awesome.

Top of the 1st... 5:30
Bottom of the 1st... 3:30
Top 2nd... 4:00
Bot. 2nd... 8:30
Top 3rd... 6:30
Bot. 3rd... 17:00 (Lugnuts scored two runs)
Top 4th... 9:00
Bot. 4th... 4:00
Top 5th... 6:30
Bot. 5th... 18:00 (Lugnuts scored two more runs)
Top 6th... 5:00
Bot 6th... 9:30 (Lugnuts scored one run)
Top 7th... 4:30
Bot. 7th... 5:30
Top 8th... 4:00
Bot. 8th... 10:00
Top 9th... 6:00