Toronto’s minor league affiliates went 2-2 on the night, as strong pitching helped out the 51s and Lugnuts, while a lack of offense burned the Fisher Cats and D-Jays. Here’s your Blue Jays complete prospect report for games played on Saturday, May 19:
Wins/Losses: 21-21 | Streak: W1 | 3rd in PCL Pacific South division (8.0 GB)
Las Vegas 51s 5, Memphis Redbirds 3 - WP: Laffey (2-5, 5.04)
Aaron Laffey tossed his first complete game since 2007 and was supported with some timely hits as the Las Vegas 51s went on to defeat Memphis Redbirds 5-3 on Saturday.
Taking a page from the Blue Jays, the 51s scored four of their five runs via the long ball. Chris Woodward belted a two-out, two-run homer in the second inning to put Vegas up early, while Travis d’Arnaud broke a 3-3 tie in the eighth with a two-run shot of his own, his third home run in two games. Woodward had a nice day at the plate overall, adding a game-tying RBI double in the fourth inning to finish 2-for-3 with a walk and three RBI.
While Woodward and d’Arnaud had the 51s’ only extra base hits, the rest of the lineup churned out a whopping 10 singles, with Anthony Gose, David Cooper, Ricardo Nanita and Danny Perales all hitting two each.
Baseball is truly unpredictable, and that was demonstrated on Saturday when 51s starter Aaron Laffey went the distance to earn just his second win of the season. Entering play with a 5.80 ERA, Laffey allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits in nine innings, with five strikeouts and no walks. It was the left-hander’s first complete game in almost five years, as his last one came in 2007 when he pitched for the Triple-A Buffalo Bisons in the Indians organization.
After a throwing error in the middle of the fourth, Laffey retired the next 14 consecutive batters, striking out the side in the ninth inning as well.
Wins/Losses: 16-24 | Streak: L2 | 5th in EAS Eastern division (8.5 GB)
Trenton Thunder 3, New Hampshire Fisher Cats 1 - LP: McGuire (3-1, 3.29)
New Hampshire’s bats were non-existent once again in their second loss to Trenton in as many nights, falling 3-1 on Saturday.
After managing one run in the series opener on Friday, the Fisher Cats responded with just one run again on Saturday. When you do that, it’s hard to win ball games.
New Hampshire’s lone tally came from a John Tolisano home run in the sixth, and he was the only Fisher Cat to have a multi-hit game, also hitting a single and drawing a walk. Four other Fisher Cats each added a single, but it was an ugly night offensively for New Hampshire, who managed one run on six hits.
Fisher Cats starter Randy Boone lasted just one third of an inning, allowing one earned run on three hits to get handed the loss. Reliever Aaron Loup came in to strand a runner at third, and only allowed one hit in 2 2/3 scoreless innings with four strikeouts.
Danny Farquhar gave up crucial runs in the fourth and fifth innings on four hits, while Fernando Hernandez kept New Hampshire close with three perfect innings. Ronald Uvideo tossed a scoreless ninth around two hits and a walk.
Wins/Losses: 27-15 | Streak: L1 | 1st in FSL North division (5.0 GM Lead)
Bradenton Marauders 3, Dunedin Blue Jays 0 - LP: Magnuson (0-4, 5.59)
The Marauders broke a scoreless tie with three runs in the seventh and D-Jays’ bats fell silent, losing to Bradenton 3-0 on Saturday at McKechnie Field.
It was the third time this season that Dunedin was held off the scoreboard, and D-Jays hitters managed just four hits in this one. First baseman Gabe Jacobo was the lone bright spot, going 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles to extend his hitting streak to five games. He’s now hit safely in seven of his last eight games, but has just a .214/.313/.333 slash line over his last 10.
Leadoff hitter Ryan Schimpf went 1-for-3 with a single and a walk, while designated hitter Jon Talley hit a single for his 16th hit in his last 10 games. After hitting .313 with an .879 OPS in April, Talley has torn the cover off the ball in May, hitting .409 with a 1.010 OPS in 11 games.
Dunedin starter Sean Nolin continued to impress, tossing a six-inning gem, but regrettably had nothing to show for it. The left-hander struck out eight, did not issue a walk, and allowed only four hits. Between the second and third innings, Nolin struck out five of the six batters he faced.
Rehabbing reliver Trystan Magnuson, who spent all of 2011 at the Triple-A level and was taken off the Jays’ 40-man roster this week, gave up a season-high three earned runs in one inning of work to take the loss.
Called up from extended spring training, right-hander Bryan Longpre made his D-Jays debut, striking out a pair in a scoreless eighth.
Wins/Losses: 30-12 | Streak: W3 | 1st in MID Eastern division (6.5 GM Lead)
Lansing Lugnuts 2, Lake County Captains 1 – WP: McFarland (1-0, 0.00)
Despite managing just two hits in the game, two key unearned runs helped the Lugnuts defeat the Captains 2-1 on Saturday. With the win, Lansing became the first team in the Midwest League to reach 30 wins.
On a night where the Lugnuts offense was out-hit 10-2, baserunners were obviously scarce. The Lugnuts trailed 1-0 until the top of the sixth inning, when a bunt and a wild pitch advanced leadoff hitter Kellen Sweeney, who reached on a fielding error, to third. Kevin Pillar cashed Sweeney in with a sacrifice fly to tie the game at 1, before Chris Hawkins roped a single to center for the Lugnuts’ first hit. Andy Burns, who has really impressed me this season, doubled to left field to score Hawkins, which wound up being the game-winning run.
Lugnuts starter Marcus Walden allowed one earned run on seven hits in four innings with two walks and three strikeouts to settle for the no-decision. Blake McFarland earned the win with four shutout innings of relief, allowing only three hits and two walks while striking out three. Closer Ajay Meyer tossed a perfect ninth to record his league-leading 14th save of the season.