All Star Updates
On Monday, the North All-Stars defeated the South All Stars 9-4 in the
Southern League All Star game. A whopping six Smokies got elected to the
game and all but pitcher Ross Ohlendorf participated in the victory.
Second Baseman Danny Richar led off for the North All Stars. He singled
twice and scored a run, but committed an error in the field. Richar is a
converted shortstop who stood fifth in the Southern League in batting at game
Jerry Gil failed to get a hit in the contest, but nevertheless managed to
steal a base and score a run. He also teamed up with Richar on a 6-4
double play. Gil has shown tremendous power for a shortstop this season,
as he is currently tied for third in the SL in homers.
Batting cleanup, James D'Antona singled, scored, and drove in a run. Of
course, he wouldn't be James D'Antona if he didn't add two strikeouts as well.
Seriously, though, James has cut down on the whiffs this year and is turning in
a fine season for the Smokies.
Some say that catcher is a weak position for the Diamondbacks organization,
but don't tell that to All Star Miguel Montero. He's having a solid all
around year for Tennessee, and was the Smokies' real star of the game. Not
only did Montero finish 3-for-3 with two doubles, a run scored, and an RBI, but
also no one on the South even attempted a steal off his well-respected arm.
Finally, Smokie closer Doug Slaten pitched a scoreless eighth in the game.
Slaten has notched seven saves on the year and fanned an impressive 52 batters
in just under 40 innings pitched. Two of his three recorded outs in the
All Star game were also on punchouts.
The All Star Futures game took place on Sunday with the US Team beating the
World Team by a score of 8-5. Tucson's Stephen Drew batted leadoff for the
victorious US Team, going 1-for-3 with a run scored. On the losing side,
Lancaster's Carlos Gonzalez also singled and scored a run. He batted fifth
for the World Team, and was one of just a few players from either side to play
all seven innings. Carlos did have the dubious distinction of recording the
final out of the game, a medium fly out to left-center on a pitch right in the
heart of the plate.
Up next is the Triple-A All Star Game on Wednesday (televised on ESPN2).
Stephen Drew will again represent the Diamondbacks organization, having led the
entire PCL in fan voting. What Drew is accomplishing in his first full
professional season is astonishing. He rattled off an 18-game hitting
streak earlier in the year, and is currently batting .285.
Playing alongside Stephen will be his double play partner in Tucson, Alberto Callaspo. Incredibly, this will be Callaspo's fifth straight All Star
appearance. Callaspo's bat control is amazing; he's fanned just 15 times
in 337 at bats so far. His .323 batting average and 43 walks have combined
to make him one of the most effective table setters in all of professional
One snub for the Sidewinders is OF Scott Hairston. Hairston actually
led all Designated Hitters on the inaugural PCL fan ballot. Unfortunately,
the fan ballot only counts for one-third of the overall total, the other equal
factors being media votes and field/General Manager votes. It is likely
that the snub had more to do with Hairston's promotion to the majors and
subsequent trip to the DL than his performance on the field. Hairston sports
a ridiculous 1.046 OPS, which leads all PCL hitters.
Read more from Keith Glab at www.baseballevolution.com