I’m going to include the full press release here at the bottom so I essentially don’t have to rewrite it myself, but but I wanted to add a few thoughts before we get to that.
As a reminder, there is no manager/coach/player access on the road outside of one availability session per week, so I can’t give you any quotes here. I’d like to. I cannot.
— I’m not sure I’ve figured this team out just yet. They’re 8-5, but how indicative is that of how good they actually are? In short, are those eight wins the product of playing teams where the talent’s spread a little thinner like Hartford and Harrisburg? Or is that New Hampshire series a better litmus test for what the Patriots really are?
— Matt Krook giveth, Matt Krook taketh away. That was a bit of a magician’s act by Krook, who wiggled out of nearly every kind of jam in his five innings of work. Working at 88-91 MPH, but also with an effective, big sweeper of a *slider*, command is key for him, and it was certainly at a variety of levels during his five innings of work on Tuesday. Bottom line: He made the pitches he had to make.
— I’m also not sure why there isn’t more love for Donny Sands as a legitimate prospect. Easy to say after he laced that hard double off the left field wall that set the stage for Dermis Garcia’s game-winning moon shot, sure. But he’s seemingly a more complete catcher than most at this level, and at the very least, the team badly needs his bat right now.
— Keegan Curtis remains a very interesting sleeper prospect candidate in Somerset’s bullpen. Sitting around 93-94 and able to touch 96, while featuring a plus curveball, he’s been a pleasant surprise thus far.
— Of the three players summoned to Somerset today, only Oliver Dunn played; he went 0-for-4 in his Double-A debut.
(PR) Hartford, Conn. – The Somerset Patriots (8-5) got a game-winning home run in the top of the ninth inning to steal a 2-1 win over the Hartford Yard Goats (5-8) in Tuesday night’s series-opener at Dunkin Donuts Park.
Trailing 1-0 heading to the final frame, Donny Sands led off the ninth with a double off of Tommy Doyle (L, 0-1). That set the stage for Dermis Garcia (3) to blast a two-run home run over the left-field fence to put the Patriots ahead 2-1. It marked the third home run for Garcia over his last four games.
The only other run scored on the night was on a bases-loaded balk called against Patriots reliever Carlos Espinal in the bottom of the sixth inning.
The starting pitchers for both sides highlighted the early stages of the ballgame. Somerset starter Matt Krook tossed five scoreless innings, scattering three hits while striking out a season-high seven batters. That included a strikeout of Matt McLaughlin to strand the bases loaded in the fifth inning — his final on the the mound.
Hartford starter Will Gaddis held the Patriots off the scoreboard across six innings. Somerset had runners in scoring position in the first and fourth innings, but did not break through.
Keegan Curtis (W, 1-0) earned the win with a scoreless eighth inning. Greg Weissert (S, 2) earned his second save of the year with a scoreless ninth inning.
The Patriots continue their six-game series against the Hartford Yard Goats Wednesday night. Right-hander Janson Junk (0-0, 1.29 ERA) takes the mound for Somerset against Yard Goats righty Frank Duncan (0-1, 6.23 ERA). First pitch from Dunkin Donuts Park Tuesday night is set for 7:05 p.m.