Series Preview: Greensboro Grasshoppers at Hickory Crawdads May 25-28
Greensboro Grasshoppers (Pittsburgh Pirates) (33-14, second place, South Atlantic League Northern Division)
Hickory Crawdads (Texas Rangers) (30-17, third place, South Atlantic League Northern Division)
Currently in third place, the Hickory Crawdads play an important series in the chase for the first-half Northern Division title with a four-game series against Greensboro.
IF YOU PLAN TO GO:
WHERE IS IT?: 2500 Clement Blvd., 1 mile west of U.S. Hwy 321, near entrance to Hickory Airport.
GAME TIMES/ PROMOTIONS:
Saturday: Greensboro at Hickory, 6:30 p.m. ZOOperstars! appearance. Salute to Troops (active and former military received two free tickets, free parking)
Sunday: Greensboro at Hickory, 3:00 p.m. BirdZerk! appearance. Church Bulletin Sunday (Bring a church bulletin to the ticket office and receive a $6 ticket with $4 from each ticket donated back to the respective church),
Monday: Greensboro at Hickory, 6:30 p.m. Make-a-Difference Monday (Donate a pair of shoes to receive two free tickets to the game. Salute to Troops (active and former military received two free tickets)
Tuesday: Greensboro at Hickory, 6:30 p.m. Dollar Dog Tuesday ($1 hot dogs, dogs admitted for $1)
TICKETS: $9 tickets in advance, $10 at the gate. Children (12 and under) and seniors $8, $15 for VIP section.
PARKING: All parking is $3.
RECENT SERIES HISTORY:
The Crawdads swept a three-game series at Greensboro during the first road trip of the season. This is the first series at L.P. Frans with Greensboro as the affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pirates affiliation was with West Virginia from 2009 to 2018. During that stretch, the Power was 52-51 overall, 30-27 at L.P. Frans. The Pirates-affiliated Power won the season-series 12-7 a year ago, including an 8-5 mark at Hickory.
PROBABLES (Greensboro/ Hickory)
Saturday: RHP Osvaldo Bido vs. RHP Yerry Rodriguez
Sunday: RHP Colin Selby vs. RHP Hans Crouse
Monday: RHP Alex Manasa vs. RHP Ronny Henriquez
Tuesday: RHP Brad Case vs. RHP Cole Winn
With 23 games left in the first half and the Crawdads 6.5 games behind first-place Delmarva and three in back of second-place Greensboro, this is probably a series Hickory needs to win in order to remain in the race for the first-half title. The Crawdads will close the first half with a seven-game trip to Greensboro and Delmarva.
Though they have lost just one series at home, Hickory has been pretty ordinary at home. The Crawdads are just 13-10 at L.P. Frans after a four-game split this week against Lexington. They are 7-7 over their last 14 at home.
Manager: Matt Hagen (2nd season)
Prospects – (team rankings are by MLB.com):
RHP Hans Crouse No.1 (No. 80 in top-100)
RHP Cole Winn No. 2
IF Jonathan Ornelas No. 18
3B Sherten Apostel No. 22
RHP Ronny Henriquez No. 30
Possible lineups: C: Matt Whatley (.182/.306/.231) or Melvin Novoa (.313/.365/.438); 1B Curtis Terry (.247/.308/.530); 2B Frainyer Chavez (.246/.338/.270); 3B Sherten Apostel (.229/.298/.353); SS Jonathan Ornelas (.310/.365/.462); LF: Pedro Gonzalez (.245/.304/.442); CF: Miguel Aparicio (.268/.333/.393); RF: Jose Almonte (.177/.219/.291)
Curtis Terry – 1st doubles (20), 4th home runs (9), tied for 3rd RBI (35), 5th total bases, 5th slugging pct. (.530),
Pedro Gonzalez – Tied for 8th homers (7)
Jonathan Ornelas – 6th batting avg. (.310),
Matt Whatley – 6th walks, tied for 6th stolen bases (13)
Grant Anderson – Tied for 6th wins (4), tied for 10th games pitched (15)
Tim Brennan – Tied for 6th wins (4), 8th WHIP (1.01)
Scott Engler – Tied for 6th saves (4)
Yerry Rodriguez – Tied for 6th wins (4),
Slash line (BA. OBP/ SLG/ OPS):.244 (5th)/ .311 (8th)/ .405 (2nd)/ .717 (3rd).
Other key rankings: 1st stolen bases, 2nd home runs, 3rd runs, 3rd triples, 3rd total bases, 11th doubles
2nd fewest hit batters, 3rd ERA (3.30), 3rd WHIP (1.17), 3rd fewest runs allowed, 3rd fewest home runs allowed, 4th fewest earned runs allowed, 4th fewest hits allowed.
Hitting (Last 10 games): Miguel Aparicio (.333/.425/.545, 2 triples, 1 HR, 4 walks, 3 steals, 8 RBI); Sherten Apostel (.359/.381/.564, 3 doubles, 1 triple, 1 HR, 7 RBI); Melvin Novoa (.375/.412/.500, 1 double, 1 HR, 6 RBI)
Pitching (May): Scott Engler (7 games, 1.69 ERA, .145 OBA, 16 IP, 8 H, 3 BB, 27 K); Yerry Rodriguez (3 starts, 2.25 ERA, .161 OBA, 16 IP, 9 H, 6 R, 4 ER, 8 BB, 27 K).
Like Hickory, the Grasshoppers are trying to stay in the SAL Northern Division race and they will start this series 3.5 games behind first-place Delmarva. Greensboro is as hot as any team in all of pro baseball, as it comes to L.P. Frans with a nine-game winning streak. That streak continued as the Pirate-affiliated team swept four straight at their old haunts at West Virginia. Greensboro is 17-5 on the road and winners of six straight away from home.
Manager: Miguel Perez (1st season)
Prospects – Greensboro (rankings by MLB.com):
RHP Steven Jennings No. 12
SS Ji-Hwan Bae No. 15
OF Lolo Sanchez No. 16
Possible Lineups: C: Grant Koch (.228/.291/.366); 1B: Mason Martin (.251/.349/.545); 2B: Rodolfo Castro (.287/.335/.615) or Ji-Hwan Bae (.323/.382/.419); 3B: Patrick Dorrian (.237/.337/.435) or Michael Gretler (.192/.250/.231); SS: Rodolfo Castro or Ji-Hwan Bae LF: Fabricio Macias (.252/.311/.432); CF: Lolo Sanchez (.333/.413/.55); RF: Brett Kinneman (.152/.227/.290)
Rodolfo Castro – 2nd slugging (.615), 2nd OPS (.951), tied for 2nd home runs (12), tied for 4th total bases, tied for 6th RBI (32)
Brett Kinneman – 8th strikeouts
Fabricio Macias – Tied for 1st runs scored, tied for 5th caught stealing,
Mason Martin – 1st RBI (45), tied for 2nd home runs (12), tied for 2nd strikeouts, 3rd total bases, 3rd slugging (.545), 5th OPS (.894), tied for 9th runs scored, tied for 9th walks,
Lolo Sanchez – 1st triples (5), 1st caught stealing (9), tied for 1st runs scored, tied for 1st stolen bases, 3rd batting avg. (.333), 3rd OBP (.413), 3rd OPS (.928), tied for 3rd hits, 6th slugging (.515), tied for 7th total bases,
Osvaldo Bido – 2nd wins (6), 5th innings pitched, 5th WHIP (0.97), 7th ERA (2.45)
Brad Case – 1st wins (7), 1st WHIP (0.79), 2nd innings pitched, 4th ERA (2.10)
Steven Jennings – 2nd runs allowed, 4th runs allowed, 6th hits allowed
Alex Manasa – Tied for 3rd wins (5), 4th innings pitched,
Slash line (BA. OBP/ SLG/ OPS): .242 (7th) / .330 (4th)/ .416 (1st)/ .746 (1st).
Other key rankings: 1st runs scored, 1st home runs, 1st total bases, 2nd caught stealing, 3rd stolen bases.
Team pitching: fewest hit batters, tied for fewest walks allowed, tied for 1st shutouts (6), 2nd ERA (3.15), 2nd WHIP (1.11), 2nd most home runs allowed, 2nd fewest hits allowed, 2nd fewest runs allowed, 2nd fewest earned runs allowed,
Hitting (Last 10 games): Fabricio Macias (.382/.462/.647, 3 2B, 2 HR, 9 RBI); Mason Martin (.317/.364/.732, 3 2B, 1 3B, 4 HR, 16 RBI, 2 BB, 14 K); Lolo Sanchez (.382/.488/.500, 2B, HR, 6 RBI, 4 SB)
Pitching (May): Yerry De Los Santos (6 games, 2 holds, 2 saves, 6.2 IP, 1 H, 3 BB, 10 K, 0.60 WHIP, .053 OBA); Brad Case (4 starts, 4-0, 27 IP, 22 H, 7 R, 6 ER, 2.00 ERA, 0 BB, 24 K, 0.81 WHIP, .218 OBA)