Tag Archives: Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada, Mauricio Dubon, and Aneury Tavarez shine in Portland win over Trenton

Yoan Moncada (left) and Aneury Tavaraz (right) in the Portland dugout

Yoan Moncada (left) and Aneury Tavaraz (right) in the Portland dugout

Yoan Moncada playing third

Yoan Moncada playing third

(Portland ME) Any win over the Yankees is a good win.  And Portland got one, 4-3, over Trenton on a nice Thursday evening at Hadlock Field.

I was surprised that Yoan Moncada was still with the Sea Dogs so I opted for one last look at Boston’s #1 prospect in action.

Yoan is playing third these days so I chose the edge of the Trenton dugout as the spot where I would take pictures from.  I saw him make a real nice fielding play from that location.

Ronald Herrara (21) started for The Thunder

Ronald Herrara (21) started for The Thunder

I had good feelings about the pitching matchup between Portland’s Mitch Atkins and Trenton’s Ronald Herrera.  Both pitchers are in the top four of the Eastern League in strikeouts so there were plenty of missed bats in this one.

Mitch ended up with ten K’s and the win.

I came to see Yoan Moncada, and I did, but the more I see of shortstop Mauricio Dubon the better I like him as a prospect.

Kevin Thomas (Portland Press Herald) had an interesting comparison between Mauricio and Mookie over a similar sampling of games at Portland.  The numbers put up by both players are very, very similar.

But we’re talking about a shortstop.  What are Mauricio’s chances of moving up with Xander and Marco Hernandez ahead of him?  Maybe Mauricio will start to work out at 3B??

Back to Yoan.  Having seen Andrew Benintendi at Portland I can tell you that their hitting styles are very different.  Andrew was patient.  Yoan is aggressive.  There are lots of strikeouts in his future unless he gets more selective.

Mauricio Dubon has dazzled at Portland

Mauricio Dubon has dazzled at Portland

The win was a sweet one for Portland because it sets Trenton’s playoff hopes back a bit.  The Thunder still have a very nice 81-50 record.

I noticed that Trenton has really gone with young players.  The four top prospects on their roster are 22-years-old and younger.

Portland has a few young players but many of the other starters are 25+.

I mentioned Mauricio Dubon and I also must mention Aneury Tavarez.  The Portland rightfielder is leading the Eastern League in batting average and looks to have a bright future.  Expect him at Pawtucket to start 2017.

The most fortunate person at Hadlock tonight was Mike Davis of Falmouth.  Mike bought a ticket and came through the gate as fan #9 million.  That got Mike a Sea Dogs’ jersey with a “9” on it plus nine years of season tickets.  His daughter, Wagner, threw out the first pitch of the game.

Slugger?  Of course he lost.  That’s what he always does.  Sometimes the big guy gets up against a little kid who isn’t sure what bases to run to.  Not tonight.  This kid was a dart and he knew exactly what was going on.  By the time Slugger reached second this kid was close to third.  It was no contest.  Slugger even tried some aerodynamics but it was futile.

horseback trouble

horseback trouble

The inflatable horse race was interesting.  One of the contestants was too short and her feet didn’t touch the ground.  There was no way she was going to be able to get that horse to go anywhere.  So one of the Sea Dogs’ staff members pulled her toward the finish line.

Thanks again to Chris Cameron for arranging tonight’s visit.  Hadlock continues to be a great spot to visit to seeing rising baseball stars as well as to get entertained.  Tickets are a bargain.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge significantly if you click on them.)

Mark Payton touches them all after a 2-run homer

Mark Payton touches them all after a 2-run homer

Yoan Moncada heads for third

Yoan Moncada heads for third

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Billy McKinney

Billy McKinney

Pitcher Kevin Couch

Pitcher Kevin Couch

Wagner and Mike Davis

Wagner and Mike Davis

Slugger futilely tries to fly

Slugger futilely tries to fly

Miguel Andujar is the Yankees' #8 prospect

Miguel Andujar is the Yankees’ #8 prospect

Tyler Wade

Tyler Wade

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Ryan Court

Ryan Court

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Aneury Tavarez leads the EL in batting average

Aneury Tavarez leads the EL in batting average

 

Mauricio Dubon caught in a rundown after driving in a run

Mauricio Dubon caught in a rundown after driving in a run

 

 

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#1 Red Sox prospect Yoan Moncada has three errors in Portland loss to Akron

Five errors, including this one by Nate Frieman, doomed the Sea Dogs. (The ball is on the ground.)

Five errors, including this one by Nate Frieman, doomed the Sea Dogs. (The ball is on the ground.)

Kevin McAvoy was let down by the Portland defense.

Kevin McAvoy was let down by the Portland defense.

(Portland ME) The Sea Dogs’ Kevin McAvoy picked a bad night to be pitching.

Why?  The Portland infield defense fell apart five different times worth five unearned runs and the home Dogs lost, 8-2, to the Akron RubberDucks on a sunny/windy Friday night.

The last-place Sea Dogs (42-69) have struggled to put up the W’s all season.  Some losses have been over a combination of deficiencies.  Not tonight.

The biggest culprit?  #1 Boston prospect 2B Yoan Moncada.  Three times the 21-year-old fumbled grounders.

Yoan Moncada emerges from the Portland dugout

Yoan Moncada emerges from the Portland dugout

My primary reason for getting to Hadlock Field was for a last look at Yoan before he was promoted to Pawtucket or even to the Red Sox.  After tonight, I have a feeling he’ll be staying in Maine for a while.

Interesting that there is talk of Yoan learning a new position because 2B in Boston belongs to Dustin Pedroia for the next five years.  One game is a small sample but there is fielding improvement needed before any transitions by Yoan are made.

Also with Yoan there continues to be hitting struggles from the right side.  He is often linked to Andrew Benintendi but Andrew was hitting well and fielding well when he was called up.  I am not certain at this point that Yoan has the handle necessary on either of those.

2B Yoan Moncada finishes a DP throw to first

2B Yoan Moncada finishes a DP throw to first

BUT as Manager Carlos Febles suggested afterwards,
“Teams have games like this.  We’ll put it behind us and prepare for the next game.”  We are talking about the minors where scores and championships are minimized.  The RubberDucks “lost” their top two prospects in the past two weeks via promotion.  Tied for the top of the Eastern League West before the promotions, they are now six games back in the standings.

Also memorable in this game was that Yoan was injured during a caught-stealing at third base.  It appeared to be quite serious because he hit the bag hard but there was a collective sigh of relief in the Red Sox organization as Yoan was able to walk off with only a sore left ankle to deal with.

Rob Kaminsky - pitched well for Akron

Rob Kaminsky – pitched well for Akron

Akron’s top remaining prospect, Rob Kaminsky, was their pitcher in this game.  He was a #1 pick by the St. Louis Cardinals in 2014.  The lefty limited Portland to three hits.

I was impressed with Akron first baseman Nellie Rodriguez.  Only 22, he has a history of good numbers.  Led the Midwest League in hits and homers in 2014.  Led the Carolina League in homers and RBI in 2015.  Nellie is currently 4th in the Eastern League in homers and extra-base hits.  What will slow his rise to the majors?  150 strikeouts.

Portland’s Aneury Tavarez must be getting the eye of higher up’s in the Boston front office. The Sea Dogs’ right fielder is near the top of the EL batting leaders at .323.  He had three hits this evening against Akron.

Slugger loses his opponent

Slugger loses his opponent

Disappointed in Slugger tonight.  I always root for him at the start of each race.  He is always the underdog because he runs against kids.  For some reason on this night the big guy chose to impede the progress of the speedy girl he was up against.  He squared himself to block her path near second base but the clever opponent darted through his legs.  The move dazzled Slugger.  In fact, for a second or two he had no idea where she had gone!  That momentary confusion, plus the girl’s significant running skills, doomed Slugger.  I just never thought he would even consider cheating to win but I saw it with my own eyes.  Shame on him!

Thanks to Chris Cameron for arranging the visit.  Not too many home games left and they are all in August.  Good take.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Rainel Rosario, Mauricio Dubon, Yoan Moncada

Rainel Rosario, Mauricio Dubon, Yoan Moncada

Ryan Court

Ryan Court

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Nellie Rodriguez breaks a bubble

Nellie Rodriguez breaks a bubble

Jordan Smith

Jordan Smith

Nellie Rodriguez and Nate Frieman

Nellie Rodriguez and Nate Frieman

Force at home

Force at home

Trouble riding a horse

Trouble riding a horse

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Nellie Rodriguez

Nellie Rodriguez

Aneury Tavarez is hitting .323 for Portland.

Aneury Tavarez is hitting .323 for Portland.

Look at the strings hanging off Yoan's glove

Look at the strings hanging off Yoan’s glove

Play at the plate

Play at the plate

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Portland catcher Jake Romanski

Portland catcher Jake Romanski

 

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Filed under Akron, Portland, Portland Sea Dogs

Dominic Smith (New York Mets) and Yoan Moncada (Boston Red Sox) in action at Portland

Top prospects Yoan Moncada (Boston Red Sox) and Dominic Smith (New York Mets) together at Hadlock Field

Top prospects Yoan Moncada (Boston Red Sox) and Dominic Smith (New York Mets) together at Hadlock Field

Mets #2 prospect Amed Rosario

Mets #2 prospect Amed Rosario

(Portland ME) Irresistible collection of baseball prospects at Hadlock Field in Portland on Thursday night.

The local Portland Sea Dogs, however, lost 4-0 to the Binghamton Mets and continue to have the worst record (35-62) in the Eastern League.

I arrived at Hadlock 1 ½ hours early in time to see long lines of folks outside the park ahead of the 7PM start.  Didn’t imagine that the fan passion was over the prospects I hoped to see……..and it wasn’t.

Turns out that the first 1000 fans were going to receive a free Travis Shaw bobblehead.  The lure for a $3 item featuring the former Sea Dog drew that crowd and I’m guessing that there were more than the 1000 in the lines.

Anyhow, the lure for me was a look at the New York Mets’ top two prospects as well as yet another look at Red Sox prospects Yoan Moncada and Andrew Benintendi.

Red Sox #3 prospect Andrew Benintendi

Red Sox #3 prospect Andrew Benintendi

There was clearly a sense of urgency.  All four players could well be in triple A very soon, they’re that good.  In fact, I checked the Eastern League transactions regularly while the Sea Dogs were on the road to see if any of them had been moved.  I remembered how quickly Xander and Mookie came and went from Portland.

But none of the four had moved up and when I checked the starting lineups all four were there.

I had seen Andrew twice and Yoan once, so spotting them for pictures was easy.  The tough part in shooting them was the setting sun which necessitated sunglasses for some players.  Andrew is one of those.

The two Mets were a different problem.  I had never seen them before in person.  I did have numbers but in the Eastern League the numbers are only on the back. So I didn’t expect to get any early shots of #1 Amed Rosario or #22 Dominic Smith.

I was wrong about that because both players stopped and interacted with Portland players so that I was able to see the numbers on the back.  The Portland players have names on the back as well but not Binghamton.

Dominic Smith

Dominic Smith

Since I had pictures of Yoan and Andrew from a previous visit I concentrated on being sure I had some of Dominic and Amed.  I started the game on the edge of the Binghamton dugout because those two players would come towards me at the end of innings.  I was also aware that switch-hitting Yoan would be facing my way while batting.

I had to adjust my settings on the Binghamton side because the sun was blocked by the height of the stadium as it set.  Not so on the Portland side.

I would have loved to have had another camera available with a small lens because I was very close to the Binghamton players.  That Nikon I made an offer for during a recent yard sale might have been the ticket.

Yoan Moncada batting

Yoan Moncada batting

Despite all the hype (in my head), the four promising ones were all hitless for the night.  Yoan reached on a walk and I hoped that the minor league’s leading base stealer might run but he didn’t.

Dominic Smith was a Mets first-rounder in 2013.  Not tall (6’) but big (250 pounds).  The twenty-one year old Binghamton first baseman was the MVP in the Florida State League last season.  Going into last night’s game he had 12 homers, 67 RBI, and a .294 batting average.

Amed Rosario

Amed Rosario

Amed Rosario is only twenty.  The Dominican was signed by the Mets as a 16-year-old.  The 6-2 shortstop has played a good part of this season with St. Lucie in the Florida State League.  With Binghamton so far, after 23 games, he has 33 hits, 14 RBI, and a .379 batting average.

The two Mets players should reach AAA Las Vegas in August.  Yoan and Andrew should see Pawtucket shortly.  Andrew may make it to Fenway.  I will be very pleasantly surprised if I return to Hadlock and Yoan and Andrew are still on the Portland roster.

Speedster speeds past tightly-dressed Slugger near second

Speedster speeds past tightly-dressed Slugger near second

It was disco night at Hadlock and that may well have been why Slugger continued his losing streak.  His pants were seriously tight and I think he was afraid that he might rip them out so he didn’t take any chances.  On this night he faced a little kid with plenty of jets.  This kid was so fast that he was able to stop at second and allow Slugger back into the race and then blow the big guy away.  I am not sure that looser pants would have made a difference now that I think of it.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Dominic Smith

Dominic Smith

Amed Rosario

Amed Rosario

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Andrew Benintendi

Andrew Benintendi

Andrew Benintendi

Andrew Benintendi

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Amed Rosario

Amed Rosario

Amed Rosario and Mauricio Dubon

Amed Rosario and Mauricio Dubon

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Dominic Smith

Dominic Smith

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Mauricio Dubon (#11 Red Sox prospect) triples

Mauricio Dubon (#11 Red Sox prospect) triples

Andrew Benintendi

Andrew Benintendi

20-year-old Amed Rosario

20-year-old Amed Rosario

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Kid torches Slugger

Kid torches Slugger

 

 

 

 

 

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Yoan Moncada (#1 Boston Red Sox prospect) now at AA Portland

Boston's #1 prospect (Yoan Moncada) is now playing for Portland

Boston’s #1 prospect (Yoan Moncada) is now playing for Portland

Mauricio Dubon and Yoan Moncada

Mauricio Dubon and Yoan Moncada

(Portland ME)  I went to Hadlock Field on Thursday night to get a first look at the Red Sox’s #1 prospect Yoan Moncada.

The bonus was the seeing the AA debuts of shortstop Mauricio Duban (Boston’s #13 prospect) and starter Jalen Beeks.

A good crowd was on hand for a Thursday night game.  I guessed at first that watching Yoan Moncada in action was the motivation.  Later there was mention that there would be fireworks after the game.  The latter is the best explanation for the crowd size.

The last-place Sea Dogs lost the game 5-2 to the Harrisburg Senators.

Jalen Beeks started for Portland and had ten strikeouts in five innings of work

Jalen Beeks started for Portland and had ten strikeouts in five innings of work

The atmosphere at AA games is so different from the majors.  Players on either team are hardly known by the typical spectator.  Why do they come?  Tickets are inexpensive and the entertainment between innings is watch-worthy.  You also have the mascot, my friend Slugger, roving through the grandstand interacting with fans especially the young ones.

My goal was to get pictures of Yoan Moncada and I succeeded.  The sun was tough so it was difficult to know for sure what I had for quality.  I used the Portland dugout in the early going and then switched to the Harrisburg side when I knew that left-handed Yoan would be batting.

I had hoped to get Yoan handling something at second base but it never happened while I was there.

I did catch the 20-year-old coming off the field several times.

Yoan Moncada out at first on a close play after a bunt attempt

Yoan Moncada out at first on a close play after a bunt attempt

Yoan attempted a bunt in his second at-bat and but for a terrific play by Harrisburg pitcher Phillips Valdez would have beaten it out.  His speed is impressive.  He leads all of the minor leagues with 36 stolen bases.  In this game he didn’t reach base to show off that speed.

I saw him interact with some of his former Salem (VA), A ball, teammates before the game but there was little interaction beyond that.  Could be a language issue.

Lefty starter Jalen Beeks gave up four runs (three earned) in five innings.  The big stat for him was striking out ten Senators during those five innings.

Shortstop Mauricio Duban had a triple and later scored a run.  I look at a player like Mauricio and the word “shortstop” is the first thing that gets my attention.  Where would he play at the next level?  The same is true for second baseman Yoan Moncada.  Dustin is signed through 2021.

Andrew Benintendi and Yoan Moncada

Andrew Benintendi and Yoan Moncada

Realistically, outfielder Andrew Benintendi, now at Portland, would seem to have the best shot in Boston.  The Boston GM, however, said that Andrew’s hitting needs to improve.  I was impressed with Andrew’s patience batting during this game.  He was taking pitches and I know that the Red Sox want their hitters doing that.  I predict that Andrew will be in Pawtucket before the other three.

Slugger had another mascot working with him tonight.  At times I wasn’t sure which one was which!

Slugger loses track of his opponent's right

Slugger loses track of his opponent’s right

Slugger sent flying

Slugger sent flying

Slugger really had me scratching my head on this night.  I have known him as a dog of many talents just based on his speed on the base paths.  I discovered tonight that Slugger does NOT have a future in boxing.  Why?  Someone got it into his head that with a fancy bathrobe and some king-sized boxing gloves he could put on a good show.  It didn’t happen.  The opponent, on this night, was a young girl who could hardly reach Slugger’s waist.  But this kid had moves.  While Slugger danced around she did too.  It appeared that Slugger was so impressed with her footwork that he lost sight of the boxing glove on her right hand.  She delivered a shot to Slugger’s midsection and back he went on his back in a complete fog.  I expected the Sea Dog’s medical staff to get involved but they didn’t.  I thought that the young lady would check Slugger out but she didn’t.  I was going to get involved but I was in front of the Harrisburg dugout and the action was in front of the Portland dugout.  Slugger did eventually recover enough to get to his feet.  I did notice that he walked off as if he wasn’t sure if he was on foot or horseback!

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Mauricio Dubon tries on his new Portland Sea Dogs' hat

Mauricio Dubon tries on his new Portland Sea Dogs’ hat

Mauricio Dubon

Mauricio Dubon

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Harrisburg catcher Spencer Kieboom

Harrisburg catcher Spencer Kieboom

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Rafael Bautista (#16 Washington National's prospect) about to cross home

Rafael Bautista (#16 Washington National’s prospect) about to cross home

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Mauricio Dubon had a triple vs Harrisburg

Mauricio Dubon had a triple vs Harrisburg

Yoan Moncada in Portland dugout

Yoan Moncada in Portland dugout

Yoan Moncada throwing

Yoan Moncada throwing

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

Wilmer Difo (#6 Washington National's prospect)

Wilmer Difo (#6 Washington National’s prospect)

Yoan Moncada bats

Yoan Moncada bats

Mauricio Dubon

Mauricio Dubon

 

 

 

 

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