Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Toronto Blue Jays June Minor League Report: Fisher Cats

The Fisher Cats currently (July 5rd) sit in 4th place with a 39-45 record, 16.5 GB of first place. Despite their record the Fisher Cats actually had a very good month going 17-10.

Longest winning streak: The Fisher Cats had a couple of 3-game win streaks in June. They closed the month off on a modest 5-game win streak with a 5-game sweep over New Britain.

Longest losing streak: The Fisher Cats were able to limit long stretches of loses with their longest being a 3-gamer in the middle of the month.

Rotation

Scott Copeland (26) made 6 starts in June with a record of 2-1, 2.88 ERA. He allowed 30 hits over 34.1IP and showed a good ability to keep to the ball in the by only allowing 2 home runs with a very good 3.15 ground out to air out ratio. Copeland has spent the entire season in New Hampshire and now has a record of 5-6, 3.93 ERA over 14 starts and 91.2IP.

Casey Lawrence (26) was activated from the DL on June 21st and made 2 starts. Lawrence was placed on the DL on May 31st. He pitched 11.0 innings, allowing 3 hits, no runs or walks and 11 strikeouts. Pretty impressive if you ask me. He went 1-0 with an 0.00 ERA and held opponents to an .083 batting average in June. Like Copeland, Casey has spent the entire season in Double-A with a record of 4-4, 3.10 ERA over 11 starts. I could see Lawrence moving to Buffalo if Toronto makes any deadline deals.

Radhames Liz is one of the minor veteran that has been moved between Buffalo and New Hampshire this season. During his time with the Fisher Cats Liz has been dominate. In 6 double-A starts, he is 1-1 with an 1.19 ERA.

Richard Bleier (27) has spent most of the season in the bullpen but has made 2 starts recently and fared pretty well. If he wants to make it to the majors one day he will most likely want to stay in the pen. In 2 June starts, Bleier went 1-0 with a 3.60 ERA over 10 innings. Bleier has spent most of his time with the Fisher Cats and had one relief appearance with the Bisons, and has been fairly reliable going 4-5, 3.57 ERA over 20 appearances (3 starts).

Daniel Norris (21) has made 3 Double-A starts since his promotion on June 16th. He is 1-0 with a 3.31 ERA in those starts. He managed to last 5.0 innings in each of his starts and shown good command. Norris has walked 6 and struck out 25 in 16.1IP, but is hasn’t been able to keep the ball on the ground with a 0.69 GO/AO ratio. This will have to come down if he wants to take the next step to Buffalo. This LHP development has been a very pleasant surprise this season.

The Pen

Tyler Ybarra (24) made 10 appearances in June with a 2-2 record and a 3.38 ERA. Tyler did great job of keeping the ball in the park and on the ground with no home runs allowed and a 3.14 GO/AO ratio. He struggled with his command, allowing 11 walks over 8 strike outs but has limited opponents to just a .217 batting averaage.

Randy Boone (29) made 10 appearances with a 0-1 record and a 2.61 ERA. Randy converted 4 saves in June and now has 9 on the season. Boone limited opponents to a .176 batting average by striking out 10 and only walking 4 over 10.1 IP.

John Anderson (25) made 6 appearances over 12.0 IP. Anderson limited opponents to a .171 batting average and struck out 14 while allowing 6 walks. He was 1-0 with a 0.75 ERA in June. Anderson is 1-0 with a 5.27ERA on the season.

Dustin Antolin (25) pitched 11.0 strong innings in June, good for a 1-0 record and a 0.82 ERA. Antolin kept the ball in the park and on the ground by not allowing a HR and having a good 2.00 GO/AO ratio. He struck out 14 and walked 4. Antolin had a dreadful May so this was a good month for him.

Gregory Infante (27) spent May with the Bisons, but was welcomed back to NH’s pen with open arms. Infante converted 4 saves over 7.1IP with a 0-0, 1.23 ERA.

Scott Gracey (28) had a rough June with a 2-2 record and a 5.63 ERA over 8.0 IP. Gracey still held opponents to a .185 batting but was victimized by the long ball, as he allowed 2 HR in June. Let’s hope that he can put June behind him as he has been very reliable with a 3-4, 3.55 ERA in 2014.

Outfield

Dalton Pompey (21) was promoted on the 27th of June and got into 5 games. Pompey has struggled against the Double-A pitching so far. He went 0/14 with 3 runs, but showed a good approach at the plate by walking twice and only striking out 3 times. This tells me that he is seeing the ball well, but isn’t getting all of the ball when he makes contact. Good luck in July, Dalton.

Mike Crouse (23) struggled a bit in June with a .232/.293/.362 slash. He hit 2 HR and 3 doubles, while driving in 8. Crouse showed his speed by stealing 5 bases in 21 games, but also showed his weakness for collecting too many strikeouts with 15. If Crouse could have more games like his 3/4, 2 R, BB, HR, 2-RBI, 2 SB showing on June 22, than he would definitely see some time in Buffalo this year.

Matt Newman (25) played well in June to a tune of .286/.333/.614 slash. He hit 4 long balls and drove in 16 runs. He also collected 7 doubles and 2 triples. He really put the team on his shoulders and played a big part in the Fisher Cats good June.

Infield

Jon Berti (23) has seen a fair amount of time in the OF but since he is listed as a 2nd baseman he is in the infield section. Berti has been steady all season and June was no different. Berti slashed a .279/.342/.404 and hit 2 HR and stole 6 while being caught 4 times. Berti’s 25 SB is good for 4th in the Eastern League.

Andy Burns (23) has been huge disappoint thus fair in 2014, but his June performance has given me hope that can turn things around. Burns hit .272/.349/.424 with 3 HR and 13 RBI. He still struck out way too much with 22 K’s but he continues to collect some walks (10) and steal some bases (4). If Burns can carry his strong June into July than Burns might see Buffalo this season.

Jorge Flores (22) appeared in 15 games and played very well. Flores inability to draw walks will hurt him if he continues to strike out at 11% clip. Flores hit .283/.298/.326 clip with 2 doubles and no HR. He also stole 2 bases and was caught once.

K.C. Hobson (23) got called up late in June and like Dalton Pompey struggled in the 9 games he appeared in. Hobson wasn’t exactly lighting the world on fire in Dunedin, so it isn’t a surprise to see him struggle. He was able to get 2 hits in 32 AB and one of those hits was his first HR in Double-A.

Mike McDade (25) had really good June with a .294/.348/.400 slash line in 23 games over 85 AB. He hit 2 HR and drove in 17. McDade needs to demonstrate more power if he wants to push his way up to Buffalo

Kevin Nolan (26) seems to be heating up with Andy Burns as he hit .279/.311/.412 in June. He showed good extra base power with 6 doubles and a home run.

Catchers

Derrick Chung (26) has continued his rise to relevancy with another solid month. He was tearing up in Dunedin, which earned him a promotion to NH. He got into 10 games with the Fisher Cats and didn’t disappoint (.297/.316/.324). I am looking forward to seeing what July bring for this up and comer.

John Murphy (26) played 11 games and hit .276/.400/.379. He has bounced up and down between Buffalo and New Hampshire all season. It will be interesting to see how he used with Chung expected to see most of the playing time behind the plate.

 

Pitcher to watch: This one is a no brainer….Daniel Norris. I would like to see Matt Boyd do well in his second shot with the Fisher Cats.

Hitter to watch: I can’t wait to see Dalton Pompey solve Double-A pitching.

 

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