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

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Austin Krum promoted to Scranton

TRENTON – As was the case with Justin Christian toward the end of last season, the Thunder have lost their leadoff man to Scranton. And just as it did with Christian, the loss is going to have a big effect on the offense.

In his second full season with Trenton, Krum was thriving, playing stellar defense in left field and was providing the team with a consistent and needed spark at the of the lineup.

“He played very well. He did a nice job for us,” manager Tony Franklin said. “His average and all that stuff doesn’t indicate the most productive of seasons, but the guy has made some very good strides with just his batting technique. … He has a chance to do some very good things in this game.”

To Franklin, the batting eye and the walks that it produced were what helped set Krum apart.

Before he departed, the 25-year-old drew 25 walks and stole 14 bases – both marks are good for second in the organization, behind Charleston’s Ramon Flores and teammate Ray Kruml, respectively – and a .242/.348/.293 slash line.

“I think he’s the victim sometimes of umpires’ poor ball-strike calls,” the manager said, suggesting that, were the umpires more consistent, Krum could have drawn even more free passes. “I think he’s got a better eye than the umpires. He’ll swing at some bad pitches up in the zone, but for the most part, he’s got a pretty good eye.”

The move gives Scranton some depth while Jordan Parraz and Greg Golson are on the disabled list.

To adjust to his absence, at least for last night’s game, Kruml was moved into the leadoff hole and Addison Maruszak was plugged into the ninth spot. Cody Johnson took Krum’s spot in the outfield.

The Maruszak move is interesting, because despite his .230 average and a .345 slugging percentage, the first baseman and occasional catcher boasts a .360 on-base percentage, best on the team among regulars. His 22 bases on balls were second only to Krum.

“Getting that type of on-base percentage from the bottom of the lineup heading to the top, that kind of helps us there,” Franklin said.

NOTES: Franklin went home sick again before yesterday’s game, this time with flu-like symptoms.

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