Apr 5, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Josh Johnson (55) delivers a pitch against the Boston Red Sox at Rogers Centre. The Red Sox beat the Blue Jays 6-4. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Johnson on the Comeback Trail: May 25 Minor League Report


Pitcher Josh Johnson made his first AAA rehab start on Saturday as the Buffalo Bisons took on the Pittsburgh Pirates’ top farm club on a full Saturday of Blue Jays farm club action.

Buffalo Bisons (27-20)

The Buffalo Bisons got two runs off of Pittsburgh prospect Gerrit Cole in the bottom of the first inning and that was enough as the Herd beat the Indianapolis Indians 2-1 on Saturday afternoon. Rehabbing Toronto Blue Jay pitcher Josh Johnson made the start for the Bisons, throwing four shutout innings, giving up only a hit and a walk while striking out three. For their offense, the Bisons got three consecutive singles from Jim Negrych, Eugenio Velez and Luis Jimenez in the first inning which scored one and Velez scored the second run on a wild pitch by Cole. Velez added another hit but that was all the hitting the Bisons did all day, totalling four on the game. The back end of the bullpen was outstanding with both Juan Perez and Neil Wagner shutting down the Indians and both of them now sport ERAs below the 1.00 mark.

Hitting:

Jim Negrych – 1/3, R, BB, SB
Eugenio Velez – 2/4, R, 2 K
Luis Jimenez – 1/3, RBI, BB, K
Josh Thole – 0/4, K
Andy LaRoche – 0/1, BB
Ryan Langerhans – 0/2, BB
Ricardo Nanita – 0/3
Ryan Goins  – 0/3, E
Mike McCoy – 0/3

Pitching:

Josh Johnson – 4 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 K
Todd Redmond – W, 2 1/3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 4 K
Juan Perez – 1 1/3 IP, 1 BB
Neil Wagner – S, 1 1/3 IP, 1 BB, 3 K

Jay Blue’s Player of the Game:  Josh Johnson

New Hampshire Fisher Cats (24-26)

Game 1

The Fisher Cats completed their suspended game against the New Britain Rock Cats winning 4-2. After Marcus Stroman’s solid four-inning effort on Friday night, Chorye Spoone and Joel Carreno combined for the remaining five shutout innings. Carreno was particularly dominant, facing only six batters over his two innings. The hitters got the job done fairly quietly using outs to manufacture their runs.  Brad Glenn drove in two with a sac fly and a ground out. Both Ryan Schimpf and Clint Robinson hit RBI ground outs. Incidentally, Brian Van Kirk scored three of the runs but only had one hit of his own.

Roster Notes: 1B Jon Talley was promoted from A-Advanced Dunedin.

Hitting:

Kevin Pillar – 0/3, R, 2 BB, 2 K, CS
Brian Van Kirk – 1/3, 3 R, BB, K
Kevin Nolan– 1/3, BB
Clint Robinson – 0/3, RBI, BB
Ryan Schimpf – 1/2, RBI, 2 BB
Brad Glenn – 1/3, 2 RBI, SF
Adam Loewen – 0/4, K
Jack Murphy – 1/4
Amadeo Zazueta – 1/4

Pitching:

Marcus Stroman – 4 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR
Chorye Spoone – W, 3 IP, 1 H, 2 BB, 2 K
Joel Carreno – S, 2 IP, 1 K

Jay Blue’s Player of the Game: Chorye Spoone and Joel Carreno

Game 2

The news from the second game of the day wasn’t as good for the Fisher Cats as they dropped the nightcap 4-1 to the New Britain Rock Cats. New Britain scattered the runs in four separate innings, getting all of them off Fisher Cats starter Marcus Walden who gave up ten of the eleven Rock Cats hits. Kevin Pillar and Sean Ochinko each had two hits while Ochinko drove in the sole Fisher Cats run.

Hitting:

Kevin Pillar – 2/3
Brian Van Kirk – 0/3, K
Ryan Schimpf – 0/3
Kevin Nolan – 0/3, R
Clint Robinson – 1/3
Brad Glenn – 0/2, BB
Sean Ochinko – 2/3, 2B, RBI
Adam Loewen – 0/3, K
Kevin Ahrens – 1/3 K

Pitching:

Marcus Walden – L, 5 2/3 IP, 10 H, 4 R, 2 BB, 1 K
Scott Gracey – 1 1/3 IP, 1 H, 2 K

Jay Blue’s Player of the Game: Sean Ochinko

Dunedin Blue Jays (27-19)

Spot-starter Marco Grifantini had a solid outing to help the Dunedin Blue Jays to a 6-2 win over the Tampa Yankees on Saturday. Grifantini threw five innings and gave up the Yankees’ only two runs while the bullpen combined for four shutout innings. Andy Burns had himself another great day at the plate, going three for four with an RBI and a stolen base to bring his season batting average to .339. Canadian Mike Crouse went two for four with a double and two RBI while second baseman Shane Opitz had another two hit game to bring his average to .316. Shortstop Peter Mooney hit his first home run of the season to help cap the victory.

Roster Notes: 1B Jon Talley was promoted to New Hampshire while SS Jason Leblebijian was returned to the team from extended spring training. OF Jonathan Jones was placed on the DL.

Hitting:

Jon Berti – 0/4, R, BB, K
Nick Baligod –0/4, R
Andy Burns – 3/4, RBI, SB
K.C. Hobson – 0/3, BB, K
Marcus Knecht – 0/4, R, K
Mike Crouse – 2/4, R, 2B, 2 RBI, K
Peter Mooney – 1/3, 2 R, HR, 2 RBI, BB
Pierce Rankin – 1/4, 2 K
Shane Opitz – 2/4, RBI, CS

Pitching:

Marco Grifantini – W, 5 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HR
Shawn Griffith – 1 IP, 1 H, 2 K
Tony Davis – 2 IP, 1 BB, 3 K
Ajay Meyer – 1 IP, 1 K

Jay Blue’s Player of the Game:  Mike Crouse

Lansing Lugnuts (21-24)

Playing against stronger competition from the Midwest League’s Western Division, the Lansing Lugnuts lost on Sunday 7-0 to the South Bend Silver Hawks. South Bend starter Daniel Watts, a thirty-second round pick from 2012 by the Arizona Diamondbacks, doesn’t seem to be on the prospect radar but is having a fine season and two-hit the Lugnuts through seven innings on Saturday night. Lansing starter Javier Avendano only managed to get through four innings although only one of the three runs he gave up was earned. Griffin Murphy gave up six hits in his two and two-thirds innings to give up the other four. Justin Jackson finished the final one and a third innings without giving up runs of his own but did allow a runner of Murphy’s to score. On defense, the Lugnuts reverted to their porous ways, making three errors on the night although Carlos Ramirez did pick up an outfield assist by throwing out a runner at second.

Hitting:

Dalton Pompey – 0/3, BB, K
Dwight Smith, Jr. – 0/4, 2 K
Christian Lopes – 0/4, K
Kevin Patterson – 0/3, K
Gustavo Pierre – 1/2, 2B, BB
Carlos Ramirez – 0/3, K, E, OF Asst.
Kellen Sweeney – 0/3, E
Aaron Munoz –0/3, E
Jorge Flores – 1/3

Pitching:

Javier Avendano – L, 4 IP, 4 H, 3 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 4 K
Griffin Murphy – 2 2/3 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 1 BB, 1 K
Justin Jackson – 1 1/3 IP, 2 H, 1 K

Jay Blue’s Player of the Game: Gustavo Pierre

If you like what you’ve seen by Jay Blue, read his work and listen to his podcast on Blue Jays from Away and follow him on Twitter: @Jaysfromaway.

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