Captains Notebook: Brown is starting to come around
The Lake County Captains (24-42) split a 4-4 week, including a sweep of a rain makeup double-header June 5. The team managed to keep most games tight, except for June 6, which resulted in a 14-4 blowout loss. The team remains the worst-hitting squad in the league and the pitching sits among the bottom half of the Midwest League, but they're finding small ways to win. Here's a look back at the Captains' week:
Luis Lugo, LHP
1 G, 6 IP, 1.50 ERA, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 H, 10:0 K:BB
Lugo pitched a dandy June 9, another indication that he may be turning things around. Lugo has crafted three-straight solid starts since an ugly May 22 outing. What’s interesting is he issued more walks his past three starts than usual. He allowed three walks May 27 and two walks June 2, despite surrendering one walk per start in the previous seven games. Perhaps he’s become effectively wild, perhaps he’s painting the corners well, or perhaps his stuff is starting to get the best of batters.
Mitch Brown, RHP
1 G, 5 IP, 0.00 ERA, 1 H, 4:1 K:BB
Brown rebounded well June 10 after a shaky start June 5. He received a no-decision his last start, a disappointing outcome for such a nice outing. Consistency remains an issue for Brown this year, but it should be noted his 6.10 April ERA dipped to 3.99 through May. His June ERA after two starts sits at 3.00.
Nellie Rodriguez, 1B
7 G, 26 AB, 9 H, .333 BA, .333 OBP, .548 SLG, .881 OPS, 4 R, 2 RBI, 7:0 K:BB
Rodriguez has had a solid 10 games, though the remaining concern is his lack of walks. Strikeouts are going to come with a power guy, but it'd be nice to see a little more plate discipline from Rodriguez.
Walking the Plank
Dace Kime, RHP
1 G, 5.2 IP, 6.35 ERA, 4 R, 4 ER, 6 H, 2:6 K:BB
Kime was the opposite of Brown this week. Kime was coming off one of his better outings of the year from June 1, during which he allowed one run through six innings. June 8 was a different story as Kime issued his most walks in a single game this season.
Grant Fink, INF
6 G, 17 AB, 2 H, .111 BA, .278 OBP, .111 SLG, .389 OPS, 1 R, 0 RBI, 7:4 K:BB
Fink's hot start has nearly been negated by the month of May and what we've seen of June. Fink simply hasn't been hitting, and the hits he has managed haven't been for extra bases. What's interesting is that, though he leads the team in strikeouts with 91 (the next highest is Rodriguez with 69), Fink also leads the team in walks with 40.
Outfielder and 2013 Captain Logan Vick was reassigned from the high-A Carolina Mudcats. Vick hit .170 through 41 games with the Mudcats.
Right-hander Justin Brantley was assigned to the team June 9.
Outfielder Cody Ferrell was activated from the 7-day disabled list June 10.
Right-handed reliever Kerry Doane announced his retirement June 9. Doane, 23, was 0-1 with a 6.06 ERA through 16.1 innings of work for the Captains.
Taking On Water
Designated hitter Anthony Santander was placed on the 7-day disabled list retroactive to June 6 with a right elbow strain on June 10. Santander has also battled shoulder issues that have limited him to strictly swinging a bat.
On the Horizon
The Captains remain on the road for another week as they complete their three-game series with South Bend June 12. They’ll head south to Dayton for a three-game set before a trio of off-days for the All-Star break, which takes place in Comstock Park, Michigan. Pitchers Robbie Aviles and Jordan Milbrath were chosen as all-stars, and catcher Eric Haase was selected as a reserve.
Stephanie is a crime and general assignment reporter for The Morning Journal in Lorain, Ohio. She’s an alumna of Cleveland State University with a degree in Journalism and Promotional Communication. You can follow her on Twitter @7thInningSteph.