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Run by The Trentonian's Nick Peruffo, this blog will provide daily multimedia coverage of the Trenton Thunder.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Top 10 Games of the Year - No. 1

Every Monday, Minor Matters will run down the top 10 games of the Thunder's 2010 season. In a year that saw eight of Baseball America's 16 pitchers (excluding Mike Dunn and Arodys Vizcaino, who were out of the organization) in their top 30, not to mention Austin Romine and Brandon Laird, there are plenty of good choices to go around.

No. 1 - Banuelos, bats shine in ELDS clincher

After two dramatic wins over the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in the Eastern League Division Series, the set moved to Stadium, where there were a few tricks waiting for the Thunder.

Scott Richmond, the scheduled starter for Game 4, was moved up a day. Edwin Encarnacion, who, like Richmond, came with MLB service time, was plugged into the starting lineup. Both moves were widely construed as retaliation for Andy Pettitte starting in Game 2, though that was never confirmed or stated publicly.

Manny Banuelos, in his first start of the year without a pitch count, was called upon to finish off the Cats and send Trenton into its third ELCS in four seasons.

At just 19 years old, he delivered.

His line, seven shutout innings on five hits, three walks and five punchouts, was impressive enough, but it was stuffed he used that really jumped out.

The stadium gun kept flashing 86 and 87 for his fastball, which I found odd. It made more sense when some local writers told me that their radar was consistently five miles per hour slow. So when those 86s and 87s turned into 91s and 92s toward the later innings, it looked like Banuelos had found his groove.

While Trenton arms silencing New Hampshire throughout the series had become commonplace, the offensive explosion the team produced was certainly out of the ordinary.

Austin Krum, Dan Brewer and Marcos Vechionacci each doubled, and Rene Rivera and Damon Sublett both popped a longball as part of the Thunder's 14-hit outburst that fueled an eventual 8-1 win and set them up for a date in Altoona.

Link to Original Story

REACTION: “At the beginning of the game, it was a little tense. I was a little bit nervous about it” he said. “Once I started throwing my stuff, I knew my stuff was good and I kind of relaxed and just let it go.” -- Manny Banuelos

“These would be hard to top. These would be hard to top,” he said, “especially with the youngsters that we have and the newness on the pitching staff that we’ve got assembled here now.-- Tony Franklin, calling the ELDS the three most complete games he's seen in his four years with Trenton

AFTERWARD: Andy Pettitte started for the Thunder in the team's Game 1 win in the ELCS, but that would be their last win of the year. Altoona won the next three, and celebrated their first championship at Waterfront Park.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

11. Ivan Nova p
12. D.J. Mitchell p
13. David Phelps p
14. Graham Stoneburner p
15. Melky Mesa of
16. Brett Marshall p
17. Brad Suttle 3b
18. J.R. Murphy c
19. Corban Joseph 2b
20. Cito Culver ss
21. Mason Williams of
22. Bryan Mitchell p
23. Abraham Almonte of
24. Anderson Felix 2b
25. Angelo Gumbs 2b
26. Kyle Higashioka c
27. Conor Mullee p
28. Gabe Encinas p
29. Jose Ramirez [
30. Jeremy Bleich p
1st strikeout by Jesus Monter was by Robert Valido on June 4th 2009
1st hr by Jesus Monter was off Michael Stutes on June 28, 2009

January 15, 2011 at 8:59 PM 

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