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June 21, 2007 June 20, 2007

Posted by atlanticleaguenews in Uncategorized.

Biernbaum Watch: 20. The ‘Sharks slugger went 1-for-3 last night, and extended his hitting streak to 20 games. He’s now eight games away from tying the league record.

Sobkowiak Retires: I spoke with P Scott Sobkowiak on the phone this afternoon, and the former Major Leaguer has announced his retirement from professional baseball.

A large part of his decision to come back this season was based on being able to come back to Lancaster, where he loved pitching. Once that opportunity was no longer possible, he made what he said was the very hard decision to hang it up.

Absolutely one of the nicest people you could ever hope to meet in or outside of baseball, I wish him absolutely nothing but the best of luck. Awesome, awesome guy.

Camden Loses Two HUGE Players: The Camden Riversharks have lost their best ninth inning battery, with the Dodgers signing C Ben Davis and P Chris Fussell. Both players will be assigned to Triple-A Las Vegas.

Randy McGarvey will assume the starting catcher’s role, and the team will likely slide Ramon Linares into the closer’s spot.

Bautista TRADED to Camden: Just heard that the York Revolution have traded the rights to OF Danny Bautista to the Camden Riversharks for OF Justin Singleton.

Singleton was hitting .207 at the time of the trade. I’ll try to figure out if there’s any chance of Bautista actually reporting to Camden.

UPDATED: I just spoke to BASA’s David Keller, and he said that Camden does expect Bautista to report to the team and that he is expected to be there tonight.

If that is the case, then York pretty much got shafted on this deal in a baseball sense. Bautista was putting up some solid numbers when he decided to not play for York anymore (and I’m sure there’s something more than meets the eye going on with that) and Singleton was seven points over the Mendoza line.

Seems like they’ve pretty much given up on York over there…

Foster Leaves For Mexico: Jason Guarente is reporting that Lancaster OF Quincy Foster has left the team to play in Mexico.

As Guarente writes, Foster and manager Frank Klebe didn’t get along, and Foster had been offered to at least one Atlantic League team in trade talks.

Foster was hitting .283 with two home runs and 15 RBI at the time of his departure. He also had 18 steals.

The team has signed OF Vince Blue to replace him. Yet another player who called the Eastern League home last season, Blue is a 24-year-old who has experience in the Tigers system. For Double-A Erie last season, Blue hit .232 with no home runs and 21 RBI. He also stole 24 bases.

So basically, they replaced a speedy outfielder with no pop with…drumroll please, a speedy outfielder with no pop.

Certainly, no one will use “You’re my boy, Blue” in reference to him.

Three-Way Trade Involves Major Leaguer: The Newark Bears have acquired INF Vic Gutierrez from the York Revolution in exchange for reliever Barry Armitage. The Bears also sent INF Josh Arteaga to the Road Warriors.

Following those moves, York then dealt Armitage to the Lancaster Barnstormers for P Scott Sobkowiak.

Gutierrez hit .284 with no home runs and five RBI in 25 games for the Revolution this season, while Armitage was 1-0 with a 4.38 ERA in seven games out of the bullpen for the Bears.

Sobkowiak is 0-3 with a 7.20 ERA this season.

According to David Keller, Sobkowiak is likely to report to the team.

UPDATED: As you saw above, Sobkowiak retired.

Ashmore’s All-Star Teams: Here’s a look at what I think the Atlantic League All-Star teams should look like right now, complete with pitching staffs and reserves.

This is what my ballot will look like. Bwahahahaha, like I’ll actually get a ballot…


(Bridgeport, Long Island, Newark, Road Warriors)

C: Sandy Aracena, RW (.303/2/11)
1B: Victor Rodriguez, NWK (.333/4/29)
2B: Junior Spivey, BPT (.370/4/33)
SS: Nick Ortiz, BPT (.287/1/23)
3B: Luis Figueroa, BPT (.327/2/36)
OF: Kevin Haverbusch, LI (.270/5/28)
OF: Jose Herrera, NWK (.327/3/16)
OF: Ray Navarrete, LI (.321/6/30)
DH: Jay Caligiuri, BPT (.349/5/27)
SP: Matt Sweeney, NWK (5-3-0, 2.83)


OF, Keith Reed, NWK (.274/8/30)
INF, Jesse Hoorelbeke, BPT (.319/6/24)
INF, Javier Colina, NWK (.304/9/29)
INF, Vito Chiaravolloti, RW (.273/5/18)
INF, Pete Rose, Jr. (.331/4/27)
C, Tommy Rojas, BPT (.250/4/20)

SP, Bobby Brownlie, NWK (4-3-0, 3.30)
SP, Gary Knotts, NWK (2-4-0, 2.84)
SP, Donovan Osborne, LI (2-2-0, 3.35)
SP, Mike Porzio, BPT (6-1-0, 3.06)
RP, Edwin Almonte, NWK (0-1-3, 1.71)
RP, Alberto Castillo, RW (3-2-0, 2.51)
RP, Danny Graves, LI (3-1-15, 2.81)
RP, Travis Wade, LI (2-0-0, 2.05)
RP, Franklin Perez, BPT (1-0-2, 0.86)

I noticed both my colleagues have Jason Bryan in their starting lineups, and I just can’t do it. He’s hitting .232 and has no steals. Stephen Doetsch might actually have a better case, but for as much as I like the Road Warriors, I couldn’t have more than three guys on the team.

I would have liked to have had another pitcher and totally omit a backup catcher, but that wasn’t going to work out for me. Eddy Ramos probably deserves to be there. And you need two catchers.

I also had to cheat to get Junior Spivey and Ray Navarrete in my starting lineup, sticking one in the outfield…but they both deserve to be there.


(Camden, Lancaster, Somerset, York)

C: Ben Davis, CAM (.331/3/19)
1B: Nate Espy, YORK (.299/7/29)
2B: Danny Garcia, SOM (.272/4/16)
SS: Danny Gonzalez, LAN (.279/9/29)
3B: Jeff Nettles, SOM (.305/17/47)
OF: Mike Lockwood, SOM (.312/12/47)
OF: L.J. Biernbaum, CAM (.335/12/42)
OF: Dwight Maness, CAM (.307/7/16)
DH: Matt Dryer, YORK (.267/6/27)
SP: Josh Stevens, LAN (5-1-0, 2.07)


OF, Jutt Hileman, LAN (.296/8/35)
OF, Elliott Ayala, SOM (.291/1/15)
INF, Jeremy Todd, LAN (.281/10/32)
INF, Ramon Nivar, YORK (.303/1/7)
C, Lance Burkhart, LAN (.295/5/17)
DH, Angel Pena, CAM (.287/6/17)

SP, Greg Powell, CAM (3-3-0, 3.43)
SP, Gustavo Martinez, LAN (4-3-0, 3.70)
SP, Andy Van Hekken, SOM (5-2-0, 3.65)
SP, Dave Gil, YORK (1-3-0, 3.26)
SP, Brian Adams, SOM (6-1-0, 3.93)
RP, Saul Solveson, SOM (1-0-0, 2.57)
RP, Chris Fussell, CAM (0-1-17, 1.23)
RP, Ramon Linares, CAM (1-0-1, 0.95)
RP, Derrick DePriest, LAN (0-1-3, 1.25)

With the exception of deciding between Hileman and Maness, setting the starting lineup was actually pretty easy.

Dunleavy’s All-Star Ballot: Somerset beat writer Ryan Dunleavy has posted his All-Star ballot in his blog, which you can check out here.

Guarente’s All-Star Ballot: Lancaster beat writer Jason Guarente posted his All-Star ballot yesterday, check it out here.

Bluefish 4 @ Riversharks 13: Bluefish pitching walked 16 batters. Yes, it was a nine inning game and no, it isn’t surprising that they lost, 13-4.

Each Rivershark was walked at least once, and Ben Davis and Denny Abreu led the way with four RBI each.

Starter Garrett Berger walked nine batters in 2.2 innings, and was relieved by Danny Rueckel. Rueckel allowed eight runs (all earned) in an inning of work, giving up five hits and three walks. Steve Kent and Evan Fahrner came in and only walked two each, but the damage had been done.

Rueckel’s ERA is now 22.85

Riversharks pitchers walked ten, but Erick Burke got the win, scattering a run on five hits in five innings of work.

Revolution 0 @ Barnstormers 5 (Game One): Gustavo Martinez put together another quality outing, throwing a complete game, five-hit shutout to defeat the Revolution, 5-0, in game one of the doubleheader. Martinez did not allow an extra-base hit all night.

Dominick Ambrosini hit a three-run home run to provide most of the offense.

Revolution 5 @ Barnstormers 4 (Game Two): Ramon Nivar’s 3-for-3 performance led the Revolution to a split of the doubleheader, as York beat Lancaster, 5-4, in the nightcap.

Nivar hit a two-run homer off of starter Clayton Andrews, helping Chris Steinborn pick up his 3rd win of the season.

Patriots 1 @ Ducks 4: Lance Davis put together another strong start, allowing only five hits in a 4-1 win over Somerset. A Jason Romano home run was the only way Somerset could get on the board.

Jose Offerman was 3-for-3 with a solo home run in the win.

Road Warriors 8 @ Bears 9: Four home runs by the Road Warriors wasn’t enough to prevent a sweep at the hands of the Bears, who took the last game of the series by a score of 9-8.

Ian Bladergroen, David Housel, Jorge Mejia and Stephen Doetsch all went yard for the Road Warriors, but it couldn’t top a solid game by the Bears.

Marcus Nettles two-run triple in the fourth inning gave the Bears the lead for good.

Happy, Happy Time: Happy Birthday to Ducks starter Donovan Osborne, who turns 38 today.

Maxwell Cut: Atlantic League alum Keith Maxwell has been cut by the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks. He certainly has been busy since leaving the league.

Ashmore Called Up To Triple-A, Then Majors: It should be a pretty fun weekend for the AtlanticLeagueBaseball.com faithful. Yours truly will be embarking on an Atlantic League alumni road trip, heading to Richmond, Virginia on Friday night and Washington, DC on Saturday.

I’ll be in Richmond to speak to three players who jumped from the Atlantic League to Triple-A; Ryan Baerlocher of the Braves organization, and Jeremy Owens and Michel Hernandez of the Devil Rays organization. Owens and Hernandez are on the Durham Bulls, who are in town for the weekend.

It will be my first Triple-A game since 2005, and only my second overall.

Then I’m back in the big leagues on Saturday, heading down to speak to former Bridgeport Bluefish P Jason Simontacchi. Simontacchi appeared in a handful of games for Bridgeport last season, and in doing some initial research has a pretty amazing story.

Unfortunately, Nashua Pride alum and current Red Sox reliever Brendan Donnelly denied a similar request through team officials.

Despite people thinking otherwise, I’m very grateful to be able to have opportunities like this thanks to the Atlantic League, and I’m very thankful to the countless amount of people who’ve let me get to the point where I’m able to earn something like this.

And thanks to all the people who read my column in the paper and my daily work here, I wouldn’t be where I’m at without all of you.

While coming back “here” on Sunday night will be a little rough, I can never forget that what I’ve done “here” has enabled me to get a chance up “there.”

Anyway, I’m intending on using all this for my All-Star break coverage, but I’ll have some limited stuff I’ll be able to share in the meantime — pictures and limited quotes, etc. – Mike Ashmore



1. Radio guy - June 21, 2007

What gives in Lancaster? First Williams & Delgado, now Foster. This isn’t Tommy Herr’s Barnstormers. Last season they were a cohesive unit and now seem very fractured. Can you say Jeff Ball?

2. Jeff - June 21, 2007

Excellent job Mike, in reporting the Bautista news. That’s why I come to this site – to get the latest, most accurate information about the Atlantic League. Great job.

3. LIpaperlantern - June 21, 2007

Vito C in LF!!! Maybe Jeff Scott reads this blog…

4. AtlanticLeagueBaseball.com - June 21, 2007

Thanks for the kind words. A lot more going on in Camden besides Bautista…it’s been a very busy week with player moves in general.

As for Vito, it’s a shame that the Road Warriors have little control over their roster — I doubt they wanted to take another infielder when they have no reserve outfielders.

5. KenD - June 22, 2007

Bautista is in the lineup for Camden tonight.

6. KenD - June 22, 2007

Javier Colina has hit for the cycle in Camden as well. He four RBIs tonight.

7. www.BrickCityBruins.com - June 22, 2007

And the Bears have put an end to Biernbaum’s hitting streak.

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