Run by Josh Norris, The Trentonian's Thunder beat writer, this blog will cover the team, as well as the Eastern League and Minor League Baseball as a whole.
Sunday, April 1, 2012
Notes and Video from Day 8
Even if it was only seven innings, today was the day at the Himes Complex. It was split-squad day, and the Tampa vs. Charleston game featured a pitching matchup of Jose Ramirez against Jose Campos. That's a lot of Jose, and that's a lot of heat. The pairing didn't disappoint. I got good video of nine combined strikeouts strikeouts (six from Ramirez, three from Campos) in 4 1/2 innings.
Ramirez ran his fastball up to 96 miles per hour (he was at 93 in warmups), and got swings and misses with both his slider and his change-up, the latter of which is positively filthy.
I watched Ramirez face catching prospect Gary Sanchez twice, with two varying results. Sanchez slashed a double down the third-base line in his first trip, then whiffed on three fastballs and a change-up in his second at-bat.
Campos topped at 93, but also showcased some very nice breaking stuff. He was incredibly efficient, too, throwing just 51 pitches through 4 innings. And that was after the Yankees made him face an extra batter (a walk to Neil Medchill) in the fourth.
It also should be noted that both Dante Bichette and Tyler Austin did an excellent job handling Ramirez. One of Bichette's singles particularly impressed me. He took fastball in the lower-outside quadrant, kept his hands back and punched it into right field. This after fouling off several tough pitches.
On another field, Andury Acevedo, a converted outfielder from the Pirates system, was doing pretty nicely for himself. In the two hitters I saw him face, Acevedo hit 95 with regularity, and also threw an excellent slider at around 84-85 miles per hour.
In more Thunder-related news, outfielders DeAngelo Mack and Austin Krum were released from the organization this morning. Mack was slated to be with Trenton, while Krum, who has bounced between the upper levels over the last two seasons, certainly had the potential to be there at some point.
Pitchers Pat Venditte and Ryan Pope flipped groups, with Venditte bumped to Triple-A and Pope sent back to Double-A. Yankees people cautioned me that these moves might not be final, so that's a storyline to be watched until the season opens on Thursday.
Defensive coordinator Torre Tyson told me today that Walter Ibarra will be the Thunder's Opening Day shortstop, and that Rob Lyerly will see minimal (if any) time at third base.
Now, here are videos of all 11 strikeouts I saw today from Acevedo, Ramirez and Campos this morning. Enjoy.