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BLUE JAYS (4-4)
1 Jason Leblebijian 2B
2 Dickie Joe Thon SS
3 Dwight Smith Jr. CF
4 Art Charles 1B
5 Jacob Anderson DH
6 Eric Arce LF
7 Matt Dean 3B
8 Seth Conner C
9 Carlos Ramirez RF
RHP Roberto Osuna (0-0, 0.00)
RHP Jeremy Gabryszwski (0-0, 4.50) will piggyback
RHP Jeremy Gabryszwski (0-0, 4.50) will piggyback
1 Terrance Gore CF
2 Humberto Arteaga SS
3 Chris Elder LF
4 Patrick Leonard 3B
5 Kenny Diekroeger 2B
6 Fred Ford RF
7 Mark Threlkeld 1B
8 Henry Moreno DH
9 Alexander Marquez C
RHP Daniel Hernandez (0-0, 0.00)
BROADCAST INFO: Listen live right here for Blue Jays pregame at 6:45
WEATHER: A very pleasant 81 degrees with plenty of sunshine.
UMPIRES: PLATE Travis Godec FIELD Morgan Day
ABOUT LAST NIGHT...: The Blue Jays beat the Royals with a ten-run offensive onslaught on Monday, but on Tuesday it was the mound men that stood out as Tom Robson, Kevin Comer and Colby Broussard combined for a four-hit shutout in Bluefield’s 3-0 win. Robson drew the start and held the home team to three singles in four innings of work. He handed the game to Kevin Comer, who retired 12 of the 13 men he faced to get through the eighth and net his first professional win. Colby Broussard struck out the side in the ninth to record his first save. Carlos Ramirez belted his first home run of the season to put the Jays up 1-0 in the fifth and extend his hitting streak to six games. Dickie Thon scored insurance runs for Bluefield in both the seventh and ninth innings. He tripled to lead off the seventh before scoring on Eric Arce’s sacrifice fly. He was hit by a pitch to start the ninth, and after an errant pickoff throw sent him to third, he came home on Matt Dean’s RBI single.
VS. THE ROYALS: The Royals struggled last year to a 24-44 finish in 2011 and the Jays feasted on Burlington throughout the summer, going 7-2 in the season series. Bluefield took two of three at home from July 18-20, with the only loss coming in 11 innings. They swept the Royals a week later on the road by a combined score of 22-3. They played again at Bowen Field from August 16-18 and won the series again, winning a rain-shortened rubber game. Returning reliever Les Williams pitched five scoreless innings against the Royals spanning two appearances.
OSUNA: Coming into the season ranked 30th on Baseball America’s list of the top Toronto prospects, Osuna makes his first U.S. start after a scintillating debut during Friday’s home opener. After allowing an infield single to the first batter he faced, he set down nine in a row to finish the night, including four via strikeout. Only 17 years old, this right-hander was signed out of the Mexican League, which is considered to be similar to a AA or AAA level of play. Although he put up a 5.49 ERA in 19.2 innings for the Diablos Rojos, it’s worth noting that many players in that league are 10-20 years older than him. His fastball consistently sat in the low 90s last weekend, though he got it up to 93-94. Roberto’s uncle Antonio was a reliever for 11 major league seasons, mostly spent with the Dodgers.
GABRYSZWSKI: The 19-year-old righty out of Crosby, TX had his first outing of the season abridged due to a rain delay. Jeremy only pitched two innings in his start against Johnson City on Friday. He put the first three hitters of the game on base, but only allowed one run before the stoppage cut his night short. He was taken in the second round of last year’s draft, splitting time between the Gulf Coast League and Bluefield. After four and one-third scoreless innings in three GCL games, Gabryszwski moved up to the Appy League on August 29, turning in a shutout inning of relief at Danville. He relieved twice in the postseason for the Jays, allowing two runs in four and two-thirds innings. A graduate of Crosby High School, he had committed to play college ball at Lamar before signing with Toronto.
HERNANDEZ: Right-hander Daniel Hernandez makes his second start of 2012. On Thursday in Pulaski, he pitched five perfect innings in his first action in 22 months after recovering from Tommy John surgery. He went 2-0 with a 2.19 ERA and 13 strikeouts over the course of 12.1 innings prior to the injury. Hailing from Miami, Hernandez attended Miami Dade College and put up eye-popping numbers in being named Southern Conference Pitcher of the Year. He won all nine decisions with a 1.37 ERA in 65.2 innings while striking out 72 and only walking 22. He was offered a scholarship from Florida International, but he signed with Kansas City after being taken in the 12th round in 2010.
MMM, DOUGHNUUUUUTS: Tom Robson, Kevin Comer and Colby Broussard put together a four-hit shutout of the Royals on Tuesday for Bluefield’s first whitewash of the season. It was the first shutout for the Jays since July 27, 2011, which was also a 3-0 win in Burlington. In that game, Ajay Meyer pitched six innings and allowed four hits, Jonathan Lucas pitched a hit less seventh and eighth before Ian Kadish completed the five-hitter. That was the last of two scoreless games for Jays pitching in 2011, with the first on July 9 at Danville. Myles Jaye pitched five innings of one-hit ball and Aaron Sanchez went the final four frames, allowing one hit and striking out seven.
I’M SIX-Y AND I KNOW IT: Carlos Ramirez is off to a great start for the Baby Jays, hitting .348 (8-for-23). His fifth-inning home run last night was his first of the season and it provided the winning margin in Bluefield’s 3-0 win. It also extended his hitting streak to six games, spanning each contest he’s played this year. Only Elizabethon 1B/OF Rory Rhodes (eight) and Johnson City 2B Ildemaro Vargas (seven) are riding longer hitting streaks.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY!: Tom Robson, who started last night’s game with four scoreless innings, turns 19 today. The righty from Delta, British Columbia was the top-ranked Canadian in last year’s draft and was selected by the Blue Jays in the fourth round.
WORK OF ART: Art Charles is once again tearing up Appalachian League pitching. He leads the circuit in slugging percentage (.864), which might explain why opposing hurlers are so wary of facing him, issuing the first baseman a league-leading 11 walks. After drawing two more free passes last night, Charles has now reached base in all eight Blue Jays games this season. He is one of only four Appy Leaguers to reach in all eight games thus far in 2012. The others are Elizabthton’s Rory Rhodes, Ariel Ovando of Greeneville and Princeton’s John Alexander.
Pregame Audio: Coming soon
Bluefield Blue Jays Game Notes 6-27