In the type of inning that he would have wished for following his less than happy outing last Tuesday against the Giants Ryan Rowland-Smith came on and threw a very workman-like 1-2-3 9th inning for the D’Backs today.
With the Dodgers leading 6-0 there was no win or save on the line for the lefty but he needed to regain his mojo following Tuesday’s outing and that’s exactly what he did.
So far this season he has worked 5 games, 5.1IP for 5H, 3R, 3BB, 5K.
Grant was then summoned and walked the bases loaded before recording his third save. He started well striking out the first batter he faced to bring the Rays within 1 out of a win. Realising that a home run would tie the game he worked the edges low and away and consequently put the next 3 batters on base as he struggled to find the strike zone before inducing the final strike-out for a win for Price and a Save for himself.
The Shipley name is synonymous with baseball in Australia and as a family they have contributed to a number of facets of the sport.
Father Barry Shipley established baseball retail stores, which youngest son Grant continues with his own business Diamond Sports.
Craig became the first Australian born and trained player to reach Major League Baseball, and his career spanned from 1986 to 1998. He played with the LA Dodgers, NY Mets, San Diego Padres, Houston Astros and Anaheim Angels.
Middle brother Mark signed with the Atlanta Braves and attended Spring Training in 1988. He is also the only person, to date, to win three Australian Baseball League Gold Glove Awards in either version of the league, and he was one of only 15 players to play each season of the first ABL. Mark also won an ABL Championship with the Sydney Blues during the summer of 1995-96. The MLB 2014 Opening Series and Exhibition Games were played in Sydney from March 20-23, 2014.
Mark served as a coach for the Australian National Team and Craig currently holds the position of Special Assistant to the General Manager with the Arizona Diamondbacks.
There have been some movement of players since our first listing for 2014.
Notably a number of players have been released following the conclusion of Spring Training:-
Allan de San Miguel [Rockies]
Dan Devonshire [Blue Jays]
Cameron Lamb [Astros]
Peter Moylan [Astros]
Mitch Nilsson [Indians]
A number of rookie players have now arrived in the US to join other young players at Extended Spring Training which goes through until the Rookie and Short Season Leagues begin in mid June.
Extended Spring Training:
Dean Aldridge (Tigers), Ryan Dale (Royals), Sam Gibbons [Twins], Josh Guyer (Twins), Elliott Hargreaves [Reds], Nathan Hass (Braves), Sam Holland (Padres), Josh Kennelly [Reds], Ben Leslie [Giants], Todd McDonald (Rangers), Robbie Perkins [Rockies], Pita Rona (Orioles), Aaron Sayers [Tigers], Adam Silva [Yankees], Lewis Thorpe (Twins), Todd Van Steensel [Twins], Matthew Wilson [Orioles]. - Rookie Ball last year.
Jack Barrie [Twins], Jake Bowey [Astros], Jared Cruz (Braves), Karl Hoschke (Braves), Nick Hutchings (Pirates), Sam Kennelly (Pirates), Connor MacDonald (Astros), Dakota Mitchell (Reds), James Philibossian (Tigers), Ben Shorto [Indians], Zac Shepherd (Tigers), Hayden Timberlake [Astros] – MLBAAP last year.
The San Francisco Giants signed Perth’s Cameron Lamb as a 17yr old at the U18 National Championships in January 2007. He played for the Giants until 2012, missing the 2008 season due to Tommy John surgery.
Initially seen as a starter, he struggled through seasons 2009 – 2011 but seemed to have found his feet as a reliever in 2012 where he threw only 25.2 innings but kept his ERA to a lowly 2.10 with a 2-1 record. Based on those performances he was picked up by the Astros in the Minor League (AAA) phase of the Rule V draft from the Giants in December 2012. He was considered a reclamation project by the Astros who were aware of his previous injuries and bounced around their minor leagues last year finishing the season in AA with the Corpus Christie Hooks and 5.68ERA.
He had only been signed for 1 year and failed to receive an offer from the Astros for 2014.
It would appear that Mitch Nilsson’s arm problems have brought about his release by the Cleveland Indians after just 2 active seasons.
Mitch sat out all of last season on rehab and the reports from spring training were that his arm wasn’t up to the rigours of a full season.
The 22yr old signed with Cleveland as a 17yr old on Feb 1st, 2008 but didn’t play in the US until the 2011 season when he hit an admirable .358 in 21 games at Rookie League. The following year he was promoted to the New York Pen League [SS-A] where he hit .197 in 20 games. He then had trouble with his shoulder that required surgery and consequently missed the entire 2013 season. He is the nephew of All-Star David Nilsson.
Matt Kennelly has returned to the AA Mississippi Braves and in his 2 games so far this week he went 2-4, 1R and 0-2.
Warwick Saupold has had only the one outing so far in which he was awarded the win, throwing the opener for the Erie SeaWolves and going 5IP, 3H, 0R, 1BB, 5K.
Ryan Searle had 2 outings with the Tennessee Smokies in the first week of AA action. In his first game he went 3IP, 1H, 1R, 3BB, 5K and followed that with a 1.1IP, 0H, 0R, 0BB, 1K 4 days later.
Stefan Welch has had a somewhat slow start to his 2014 season. He went hitless in his first 2 outings but got things into gear in his 3rd game going 2-3, including a double and scoring a run.
Padres’ John Hussey is on the 7 day DL.
We are not sure what has happened to Cameron Lamb – Houston have listed him as a free agent. If we hear anything we of course will let you know.
James Beresford has had a good start to his 2014 season hitting .438 after hitting safely in each of his 4 games. In those 4 games this first week he went 2-4, 1R, 1RBI; 3-6, 0R; 1-3 1R, 1RBI, 1BB & 1-3, 1R, 1RBI, 1BB.
We already told you about Liam Hendriks’ win in his 1st outing when he threw 2 scoreless innings against his old club Rochester. His 2nd outing was almost as good as his first, throwing 2 scoreless innings allowing just 1 hit whilst striking out 2.
Josh Spence, now with the Marlins AAA team the New Orleans Zephyrs, has had two scoreless innings this week. His line in his opening game was 1IP, 1H, 0R, 1BB, 2K and he went even better in his 2nd outing throwing 2.2 innings for 2H, 0R, 1BB, 3K. He will be happy with his opening weeks work.
Both Trent Oeltjen [D'Backs] and Andrew Russell [Braves] are on the 7-day DL.
A single run by the Rays in the 9th set up a save situation for Grant Balfour against the Kansas City Royals today. With the Rays leading 1-0 it was only the 2nd Save opportunity that Grant has had so far this season and he took advantage of the situation with a dominating performance.
Despite the first hitter, Mike Moustakas, hitting a ‘see-ing eye’ single just out of reach of 2nd baseman Ben Zobrist Grant made short work of the next three hitters including 2 consecutive strikeouts.
Perhaps more importantly for Balfour watchers and Rays’ fans in general was that his velocity is rising as he said it would. During Spring Training he was throwing 89-91 and said at the time that once the adrenalin hit in during a tight game this would rise and today he was consistently 93-94.