History-making skid ends at 12 for hard-luck Baysox

Bigbie's 6-hit game is first for Rochester since 1921

Minor-league notebook

Baseball

May 13, 2002|By Roch Kubatko | Roch Kubatko,SUN STAFF

Players on the Bowie Baysox who aspire to reach the majors must have felt as if they already had gotten there. They were doing a pretty good impression of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

The Baysox fell three games short of the Devil Rays' 15-game losing streak, putting the brakes on a skid last week that began April 22. Never before in franchise history had a Bowie team lost so many times in succession.

During the streak, which ended last Monday against Harrisburg, the Baysox lost five one-run games, were shut out twice and committed 16 errors. They were 4 1/2 games behind first-place Akron in the Eastern League's Southern Division before the season turned bad. They were 14 back heading into the weekend.

They're still waiting for their luck to change.

On Saturday, the Baysox carried a 3-1 lead into the ninth inning against Trenton. One strike away from their third consecutive victory, they surrendered a double to Aaron Capista and a game-tying single to Wilton Veras.

Trenton took a 4-3 lead in the 10th. Bowie tied it in the bottom half but gave up three runs in the 11th.

Offense hasn't been an issue for the Baysox. They outhit their opponents 112-111 during the losing streak. For the season, they took a .261 team average into the weekend that ranked third in the league, along with a 5.60 staff ERA that was the worst. The bad karma has spread to reliever Eddy Rodriguez, who moved up from Single-A Frederick yesterday, where he hadn't allowed a run since April 11, a span of 10 games and 12 1/3 innings. Rodriguez allowed six runs and walked three in 1 2/3 innings in yesterday's 14-4 loss.

Outfielder Keith Reed, a first-round pick in the 1999 draft, hit safely in his first 12 games and was batting .390 before turning ice cold. He went hitless in 30 consecutive at-bats from April 29 to Tuesday, a span of eight games, to drop his average to .245.

Prized shortstop prospect Ed Rogers headed in the opposite direction, recovering from a slow start by crafting a nine-game hitting streak and raising his average from .234 to .337. He went 19-for-35 during the streak, with five doubles, two homers and four RBIs.

Triple-A Rochester

The city still is abuzz over Larry Bigbie's 6-for-6 day last Monday.

Bigbie, a former first-round draft pick, became the first Rochester player to have six hits since Bob Fothergill did it for the Colts on Sept. 18, 1921. No Red Wing ever had done it. During a recent 10-game hitting streak, Bigbie batted .429 with six doubles and four RBIs. He was hitting .400 for the season before being sidelined with a sore right shoulder. ... First baseman Franky Figueroa was sent to Double-A Bowie to make room for pitcher Mike Drumright. ... The Red Wings lost three straight to Louisville in the last at-bat, with Leslie Brea allowing two runs after getting the first two outs in the ninth. ... Second baseman Brian Roberts took a 10-game hitting streak into the weekend, batting .356 with a double, two triples, a homer, three RBIs and four steals. ... Ryan McGuire, who challenged for a job with the Orioles this spring, was hitting .333 during an eight-game streak, with two doubles, two triples and 10 RBIs. ... John Stephens was leading the International League with 42 strikeouts. ... Jay Spurgeon retired 15 straight batters during Wednesday's game against Louisville, but Kris Foster allowed a grand slam to spoil the effort. Spurgeon became the first Rochester pitcher to strike out six in a row since Mike Oquist on June 14, 1993.

Double-A Bowie

Bowie has lost six games when it's been tied or ahead in the ninth inning. ... First baseman Doug Gredvig went on the disabled list Thursday with a sore right heel. The injury occurred when he fouled a ball off it. Gredvig was batting .302 with six homers and 17 RBIs. ... Left-hander Erik Bedard, a prized prospect in the organization, left last Monday's start after one inning with a sore back. ... Pitcher Richard Salazar went on the disabled list with a left shoulder injury. ... Another of the injured Baysox, left-hander Matt Riley, was expected to come off the disabled list next weekend. ... Darnell McDonald, a disappointment since being taken with the 26th overall pick in the 1997 draft, had started the Baysox's first 30 games while being used at all three outfield positions and as the designated hitter. During an eight-game hitting streak, McDonald batted .441 with three doubles, a homer and five RBIs. Outfielder Ray Cabrera hit three homers in a three-game stretch. ... Joey Hammond's eight-game hitting streak ended Friday.

Single-A Frederick

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