Tagged: Nathan Orf
Moving On Up: Holle, Rivera make the jump to Double-A
Two of the Brevard County Manatees’ best are making the jump up. Within 24 hours, both RHP Greg Holle and INF Yadiel Rivera were transferred from Brevard County to Double-A Huntsville. It is no surprise that the duo got called up as both put up ridiculous numbers over their final few games with the ‘Tees. Lets take a look:
After suffering an injury early in Spring Training, Holle spent time in extended camp before being added to the Manatees roster on April 30. Despite plentiful success while in Brevard in 2014, the injury troubles remained with him. The right-hander was on the disabled list from May 29 until June 6 and missed extra time with flu-like symptoms.
However, when Holle was on the bump for the ‘Tees it spelled trouble for opponents. The 6-foot-8 righty did not surrender a run in seven of eight appearances he made with the team, which included a nine-inning scoreless streak before getting the call.
Holle finished his tenure in Brevard with a flourish. On June 20 at Daytona, Holle entered the ballgame with the bases loaded and dominated. The former TCU Horned Frog threw 2.2 innings of scoreless relief to close out the Manatees 7-3 victory over the Cubs, which he discussed the following day:
Holle made first 2014 appearance with the Stars last night. He threw a scoreless inning of relief and did not allow a baserunner in Huntsville’s triumph over Pensacola. Holle went 4-3 with a 3.96 ERA and 10 saves with the Double-A club a year ago.
Rivera was one of the surprising returnees to Brevard in 2014. The supremely talented middle infielder hit .241 with 23 extra-base hits and 37 runs batted in with the ‘Tees last year, but due to a logjam at the higher levels he returned to Space Coast Stadium.
After a bumpy start at the plate (.224 AVG) through the first two months of the year, Rivera found his rhythm in the month of June. In the 16 games he played in the month before being transferred, Rivera hit at .351 clip with a .403 on-base percentage.
Almost improbably, over his final seven games, Rivera was even better. He tallied a base-hit in six of his final seven games with the ‘Tees and left with a four-game hit-streak. In total, Rivera batted .462 (12-for-26) with five runs scored, three doubles, a home run, two RBI and a stolen base.
Yesterday, in his final game with the ‘Tees, Rivera went an astounding 3-for-4 with a ground-rule double and a stolen base in a Manatees win over the Dunedin Blue Jays. We had a chance to speak with him after the game:
‘Tees Tidbits: UT Nathan Orf is at it again…Since June 17, Orf has the highest batting average (.483) and on-base percentage (.545) in the Florida State League…During this stretch, the lead-off hitter has scored 10 runs, hit four doubles, driven in four runs and walked three times…He also recorded five multi-hit games during the seven-game streak…During their four-game road trip, the Manatees bats were on fire…The team recorded double-digits in hits in three of the four games…The ‘Tees went 3-1 on the trip and had a .297 batting average (44-for-148).
How Sweep It is!
With back-to-back 5-2 victories over the Daytona Cubs on Friday and Saturday evenings the Brevard County Manatees completed a four-game sweep against their I-95 rivals.
By taking all four games from Daytona, Brevard County has tied its season-high with four straight victories, but more notable was the way the Manatees did it.
At The Plate
The ‘Tees bats battered Cubs pitching by hitting at a .319 clip (43-for-135) with four home runs, including three on Saturday night.
However, Joe Ayrault’s club didn’t just get it done with the long ball. In the four-game set the Manatees recorded an incredible 16 extra-base hits.
Nathan Orf, who hit leadoff throughout the series, was a particular menace against the Cubs. Orf, who was hit by a pitch in each of the first three games, tallied four runs scored, three doubles, a triple and drove in a run against Daytona.
If Orf was a nuisance, catcher Cameron Garfield was a demoralizer. The California native put together the best series of his season by absolutely mashing Cubs pitching. Garfield extended his hitting streak to 10 games by batting .467 during the four-game series (7-for-15), including multi-hit performances in each of the first three nights.
Garfield made his mark by tallying five of Brevard’s 16 extra-base hits. The catcher doubled four times and drove in three runs during the series’ first three matchups, before punctuating his dominance in the finale. After an error by Gioskar Amaya kept the third inning alive, Garfield demolished the first pitch he saw from Cubs starter Jose Rosario well over the manual scoreboard in left field for a two-run homer, his first of 2014. The blast gave the Manatees a 3-0 lead and ended up being the deciding blow in a 5-2 victory.
On the Mound
The Manatees pitching was equally, if not more, impressive. The pitching staff allowed four runs, only two earned, over the course of the series good for a microscopic 0.50 ERA. The ‘Tees staff also produced a multitude of swings and misses, striking out 38 Cubs, equaling an average of 9.5 per game.
Left-handers Jed Bradley and Hobbs Johnson were both dominating on Thursday and Saturday nights, respectively. Bradley pieced together arguably his best performance of the season, allowing just two hits and two walks, while striking out seven hitters over a season-high 6.2 shutout innings en route to his second Florida State League Pitcher of the Week award.
Johnson was no slouch either. The North Carolina product struck out a career-high nine batters on Saturday night in Daytona. The lefty shutout the Cubs through his first six frames, then surrendered two runs (one earned) in the seventh before being removed with one out. The 6.1 innings of work was the longest outing of Johnson’s career.
The sweep gives Brevard County a 7-5 series edge over Daytona with eight games remaining in the I-95 rivalry for 2014. The Manatees have not won the I-95 Trophy since they took 11-of-18 games against the Cubs back in 2007.
Future Major League outfielder Lorenzo Cain (.309 AVG) and shortstop Alcides Escobar (.395 AVG) batted over .300 during the season series, while catcher Angel Salome hit a gaudy .441 (15-for-34) in 9 games that year against the Cubs. Future Brewers infielder Mat Gamel led the offensive charge in ’07, recording 11 extra-base hits in the season series (eight doubles, two triples and one home run) while driving in 11 runs. Another eventual Major Leaguer, pitcher Mike McClendon, dominated the Cubbies on the rubber. The right-hander went 2-0 with a 1.42 ERA in three starts against Daytona.
This four-game shellacking is the Manatees first four-game sweep against the Cubs since they took the final four matchups in 2011. Future Brewers pitcher Hiram Burgos allowed one run over 5.2 innings to pick up the win in the first game, while current ‘Tee Austin Ross started and recorded the victory in a 15-4 victory against Daytona in the second meeting.