Concern is not the right word to describe how I feel about Brady Aiken right now. Maybe a little confused? The 20-year-old is already in Single-A in his first full-year post Tommy John surgery, but he still doesn’t look like himself. In the latest entry into the Weird World of Brady Aiken, he struck out nobody and walked four batters while still holding them to one run over six innings.
Also, Bradley Zimmer had a monster dong.
Columbus Clippers 3, Charlotte Knights 6 (Game 1)
Columbus Clippers 8, Charlotte Knights 1 (Game 2)
After a rainout on Friday, the Columbus Clippers split their first doubleheader of the season against the Charlotte Knights.
In the first game, Mike Clevinger technically got the start Saturday, but he only faced three batters, one of which got a single and the other hit a home run, before the game got suspended due to rain. Ryan Merritt did well resuming the game on Sunday, pitching 6.2 innings and striking out eight.
Clippers batters racked up 10 hits in the first game, but they left 14 runners on base and were 2-for-14 with runners in scoring position. They also struck out eight times. Erik Gonzalez led the way with three hits batting at the top of the lineup, while Yandy Diaz and Bradley Zimmer both followed with two-hit games behind him.
Zimmer took the helm as leadoff batter in game two, eventually homering for the third time this season. Between the two games Sunday and a few others over the past week, Zimmer finds himself on a bit of a hot streak. He’s 9-for-18 in his last five games, with just three strikeouts.
Zimmer was not the only firepower in the second game of the day. Richie Shaffer, Erik Gonzalez, and Chris Colabello also homered en route to the Clippers scoring eight runs — their highest offensive output since April 8’s 9-8 win over Louisville.
Joe Colon pitched another scoreless inning for the Clippers yesterday. The 27-year-old has not allowed a run since April 6.
Akron RubberDucks 5, Bowie Baysox 8
Box Score · RubberDucks fall to 9-12
With last night’s loss to the Bowie Baysox that tied the three-game series — their third loss in their last four games — the Akron RubberDucks will be looking for a series win on Sunday.
Greg Allen had two hits on the day, including a leadoff home run and four of Akron’s five runs batted in. Mike Papi and Todd Hankins each had two hits as well. Yu-Cheng Chang’s rough start continues, with an 0-for-4 day with three strikeouts. He has struck out at least once in all but two games this season. In his last 10, he’s struck out 16 times with no walks.
DJ Brown got the start for the Akron RubberDucks and only lasted 1.2 innings. Unlike Clevinger’s short day, however, it makes sense that Brown was pulled. He allowed eight runs off seven hits and did not strike out any of the 15 batters he faced in that span.
Lynchburg Hillcats 11, Myrtle Beach Pelicans 3
Box Score · Hillcats improve to 10-10
Based on the early parts of the season, the Lynchburg Hillcats look like the only Cleveland Indians affiliate capable of finishing with a winning record. They brought it back to .500 with a big win over the Myrtle Beach Pelicans yesterday.
Every Hillcats batter besides Claudio Bautista had a hit yesterday, with Sam Haggerty, Martin Cervenka, Andrew Calica, Jodd Carter, and Willi Castro adding multi-hit days for good measure. Lynchburg only struck out three times as a team and they walked twice.
Sunday was Sam Haggerty’s sixth multi-hit game of the season and he quietly leads the team in hits (20), doubles (6), triples (6), and walks (12). The only thing he has not done so far is hit a home run, and he has a surprisingly low number of runs batted in (5) given his high hit total and team-leading 1.055 slugging percentage.
Lake County Captains 0, West Michigan Whitecaps 1
Box Score · Captains fall to 9-13
It’s too early to worry about Brady Aiken yet (he’s 20 and in Single-A, coming off Tommy John surgery, give it time), but he definitely has some walk issues early on this season, and not a lot of strikeout stuff. In last night’s loss, while he managed to hold the West Michigan Whitecaps to just one run off two hits, he didn’t strike anyone out and he walked just four batters.
Unfortunately for Aiken, and the Lake County Captains, the offense just couldn’t pick him up. Li-Jen Chu, Emmanuel Tapia, Conner Capel, and Alexis Pantoja were the only Lake County batters with hits, while they struck out 15 times as a team and did not draw a single walk.
The top third of the lineup — Gabriel Mejia, Luke Wakamatsu, and Logan Ice — were a combined 0-for-11 with six strikeouts.