July 30, 2014
The Pensacola Blue Wahoos dropped their fourth straight to the Mississippi Braves, 4-3, on Tuesday night at Trustmark Park in Pearl, Miss. Robert Stephenson (L, 5-7) was plagued by seven walks over his 4.2 innings of work despite striking out six Braves hitters.
Mississippi scored their first run on a passed ball to match the Blue Wahoos first-inning run and tie the game early. Pensacola re-claimed the lead with a run in the third when Ryan Wright scored from second on a hustle double into shallow centerfield by Travis Mattair.
The Braves did the lion’s share of their damage in the fifth. Robert Stephenson fought his control with three walks in the fifth inning and he allowed just one single before exiting with the bases loaded and two outs and the game tied at two. James Walczak allowed a single to the first batter he faced, Braeden Schlehuber, which scored two runs and gave the Braves all they needed.
Stephenson allowed 4 R/3 ER over his 4.2 inning and matched his season high with seven walks to go with six strikeouts. He surrendered just three hits in the losing effort.
Braves starter Ryan Weber (W, 4-4) picked up the win after allowing just 3 R/ER on eight hits over 6.0 innings. Ryan Kelly (S, 2)came in to work a scoreless ninth for his second save of the year.
The Blue Wahoos will try to stop the skid on Wednesday with RHP Michael Lorenzen (4-5, 2.70) on the mound against Braves RHP Mitch Atkins (5-0, 4.65). First pitch is slated for 7:00 p.m. from Trustmark Park.
by Tommy Thrall
July 29, 2014
Make it three nights in a row that the Braves have claimed a 6-2 win over the Pensacola Blue Wahoos at Trustmark Park. The Braves used a five-run first inning on Monday night to put the Blue Wahoos away in the middle game of the five-game set.
Jon Moscot (L, 5-10) was met with early adversity when he surrendered a three-run home run to Kyle Kubitza after starting the game with back to back walks. The Braves mounted a second rally in the first inning after two were out. Mississippi strung together four straight two-out hits to go up 5-0 before the first-inning ambush came to an end. Moscot settled down and retired the next seven batters he faced, and 10 of the next 12.
The Blue Wahoos got on the board with a pair of runs in the fifth. Juan Duran’s triple started the threat against M-Braves starter Williams Perez (W, 4-6). Brodie Greene knocked him in with his second single of the game, and Greene came home on a base hit from Yorman Rodriguez. Those were the only runs the Wahoos could put on the board against Braves pitching.
Greene was one of three Wahoos with a multi-hit contest. Duran and Travis Mattair had the other, and both finished 2-for-4.
Moscot was saddled with the loss after going 6.0 innings. He gave up the 5 R/ER on eight hits with two walks and four strikeouts. Perez picked up the win for the Braves after allowing 2 R/ER on seven hits over 6.0 innings.
Pensacola will try to snap their skid with RHP Robert Stephenson (5-6, 4.12) on the mound Tuesday night against RHP Ryan Weber (3-4, 4.54). First pitch is set for 7:00 p.m. from Trustmark Park in Pearl, Miss.
by Tommy Thrall
July 28, 2014
The Northview High School has rescheduled their double elimination coed softball tournament from August 2 to August 16. The tournament will be held from 8 a.m. until at Showalter Park in Century, with proceeds benefiting the Northview Chiefs football program.
For more information or to sign up a team, call Amy at (850) 516-8400 or Tony at (850) 516-5736.
July 28, 2014
For the second straight night, the Braves scored three late runs to take down the Blue Wahoos 6-2 at Trustmark Park in Pearl, Miss. Rich Poythress doubled home two in the eighth to put the game out of reach, before later scoring on a sac fly to give the Braves a four-run lead.
Pensacola started the game struggling offensively. Braves right-handers J.R. Graham and Greg Ross (W, 4-1) combined to face the minimum over the first 5.1 innings of the game before Brodie Greene broke through with a base-hit. Ryan Wright immediately followed that up with a two-run home run to pull the Wahoos within one in the sixth inning. That would be all for the Wahoos offensively.
Daniel Corcino (L, 9-9) allowed a pair of baserunners in the first inning before he settled down to retire the next eight batters he faced before he issued back to back walks to open the fourth inning. Both came home on a two-run triple from Daniel Castro, which was followed up by an RBI double from Mycal Jones.
Corcino was charged with 3 R/ER on three hits over 3.1 innings with three walks and three strikeouts in the losing effort. Drew Hayes was tremendous in relief going 3.2 innings without allowing a run to keep Pensacola in the game. He allowed just one hit with a strikeout in the longest outing of his career.
Much like the Braves seventh inning rally on Saturday night, Mississippi started their three-run eighth on Sunday with a bunt single. Mississippi used their speed effectively Sunday totaling seven steals including three in the eighth.
Graham didn’t factor a decision after going two perfect innings with a strikeout in his start. The win went to Ross after he allowed just 2 R/ER on four hits over 5.0 innings.
Pensacola will turn to RHP Jon Moscot (5-9, 3.18) against Braves RHP Williams Perez (3-6, 3.51) in the middle game of the five-game series on Monday. First pitch is slated for 7:00 from Trustmark Park in Mississippi.
by Tommy Thrall
July 25, 2014
The Northview High School varsity cheerleaders recently attended a two-night stunt camp at Florida State University.
The team received an overall superior rating and the “Banana Spirit Award”. Kendal Cobb received the “Pin It Forward Award”, and Morgan Ward and Megan Bryan were selected as All-American Cheerleaders. Ward and Bryan will have an opportunity to take part in the London New Year’s Day parade.
“We are anticipating a great season,” Coach Megan Carroll said.
Pictured top: The Northview High School varsity cheerleaders recently attended a stunt camp at Florida State University. Pictured below: Morgan Ward (left) and Megan Bryan (center) where selected as All-American Cheerleaders, and Kendal Cobb received the “Pin It Foward Award”. Photos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.
July 25, 2014
Bryson Smith broke an 0-for-15 slump since returning to the Pensacola Blue Wahoos lineup in Hollywood-type fashion.
Smith belted a grand slam in the third inning that put the Wahoos ahead, 7-2, against Southern League South Division leader the Mobile BayBears. Pensacola held on to win its third straight game, 7-6, Thursday in front of a sellout crowd at Pensacola Bayfront Stadium. The Wahoos took their first series in the second half with the dramatic win.
It was the right fielder’s first RBI since June 15, 2013. That’s when Smith made an all-out play that cost him the second half of last season and a majority of this one. Chasing down a fly ball, he climbed the right field wall and his foot got stuck in the fencing’s padding, tearing every ligament in his ankle and shattering his fibula in six places. Smith still managed to catch the ball.
Smith hoped to play through the injury this season but went back on the DL on April 25 because of bone chips as a result of the surgery to repair the initial breaks. He was activated July 7 and sent to High-A Bakersfield before rejoing the Wahoos July 18.
“A fairytale would have been in my first at bat back, not my 20th,” said a smiling Smith, who still has no feeling on the outside of his leg and foot. “It’s a relief. It’s been a year since I’ve felt good. I’m still not 100 percent now, but I’m just glad to be playing.”
Before the injury, Smith was a career .308 hitter in his three seasons with the Cincinnati Reds organization. He admits it’s a miracle to be back in the game he loves and still trying to reach the Major Leagues one day. Smith plans to get a lot of rest in the offseason and lots of at bats in winter ball.
“To God be the glory that I’m here and talking to you,” he said. “I definitely have not given up hope. I know I can do it. My goal is to be in Cincinnati.”
Travis Mattair, Smith’s roommate, remembers watching the horrific accident, He says he will also remember Smith’s grand slam.
“I’m so excited for him,” Mattair said. “That was a big one tonight. We’re all happy to see it.”
Pensacola Blue Wahoos Manager Delino DeShields said he wishes Smith the best of luck in his long comeback.
“I’m really glad to see him here,” DeShields said. “He’s a very fortunate young man to just be here playing baseball still. I think he has been pressing a little bit but it was good to see him get one tonight.”
For the second consecutive game, Mobile’s shortstop Nate Sansom started the game with a home run driving a 95 mph fastball from Pensacola starting pitcher Robert Stephenson over the left field fence. Stephenson settled down getting 11 outs in a row at one point before exiting after 4.1 innings of work and seven strikeouts. In all, five Wahoos pitchers combined for 15 Ks.
Pensacola immediately came back with two runs in the bottom of the first and then got five more in the third inning, including four on Smith’s shot to leftfield.
The finale of the five-game series with Arizona Diamondbacks Double-A affiliate Mobile BayBears gets underway at 6:30 p.m. Friday. RHP Michael Lorenzen (4-5, 2.72) takes the mound for the Wahoos and is scheduled to be opposed by the BayBears RHP Archie Bradley (1-0, 1.78). Bradley is the top prospect in the Diamondbacks’ system and the top pitching prospect in all of baseball.
Pictured: The Pensacola Blue Wahoos beat the Mobile BayBears 7-6 Thursday in Pensacola. Photos by Michael Spooneybarger/ Pensacola Blue Wahoos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.
July 24, 2014
The 2014-2015 Ernest Ward Middle School Cheerleaders attended a three-day Universal Cheerleaders Association camp at the school this week. The camp wrapped up Wednesday afternoon with a performance for family members and an awards ceremony. Gabrielle Kline, Madison Sherouse, Nikoal Creamer and Jayda Crabtree were named UCA All-American Cheerleaders and will have the opportunity to participate in the Disney World Thanksgiving Day Parade later this year. NorthEscambia.com photo, click to enlarge.
July 24, 2014
How can you out do the excitement of having two of the greatest football players in college history at the Pensacola Blue Wahoos baseball game?
You hit a two-out blast over the left field wall that wins the game for the home team, 3-2.
That’s exactly what Travis Mattair, who has the most home runs in Wahoos history with 22 over the past two seasons, did. He jacked a deep homer in the seventh inning that broke a 2-2 tie and ended up the game-winner against the Mobile BayBears at Pensacola Bayfront Stadium. It was the Wahoos second straight win over Southern League South Division leader Mobile.
Wednesday’s game began with former Heisman Trophy winners and national champions Charlie Ward, a Florida State Seminoles quarterback, and Danny Wuerffel, a Florida Gators quarterback. Ward won his Heisman in 1993 and Weruerffel in 1996. Although the fans cheered loudly for them, most of the Wahoos were too young to remember the college superstars.
But Mattair out shone the legendary guests, especially since he has struggled with a season-long slump at .225. He went 3-4 Wednesday, though, adding two singles. He now has nine home runs and 44 RBI on the year.
Mattair said he’s following advice given to him by Cincinnati Reds great Ken Griffey Sr. who told him to play the game like he did when he was a boy during a slump in High-A Bakersfield.
“I’ll never forget that,” Mattair said. “I’m just trying to have fun and contribute to the team. It has been kind of a tough year but I can still make this a good year.”
Pensacola manager Delino DeShields said Mattair’s attitude remains positive on the field and off.
“Moose still has a pulse there,” DeShields said. “He’s still battling. His attitude hasn’t changed even through his struggles.”
DeShields also liked having a new middle reliever in Ben Klimesh who got called up from High-A Bakersfield on Wednesday. In his debut, Klimesh got the win by throwing a scoreless seventh inning.
“That was the biggest inning of the night,” DeShields said. “Putting up a zero gives us a chance to win. I thought (Klimesh) was very good out there.”
The BayBears got on the scoreboard first when Nate Samson started the game with a home run. However, the Wahoos came right back in the bottom of the first inning with two runs when Ross Perez singled in Brodie Greene and Kyle Waldrop hit a deep fly ball to left field to score Perez.
After the first inning, starting pitcher Jon Moscot retired 11 in a row after getting a double play to end the first inning. He allowed six hits and one walk and struck out two in six innings of work.
Mobile’s Jake Lamb, hitting .353 with runners in scoring position, hit a deep sacrifice fly to right field to score Samson from third to tie the game at 2 in the sixth inning, setting up Mattair’s heroics.
The fourth game of the five-game series with Arizona Diamondbacks Double-A affiliate Mobile BayBears gets underway at 6:30 p.m. Thursday. RHP Robert Stephenson (5-6, 3.84) takes the mound for the Wahoos and is scheduled to be opposed by the BayBears RHP Bradin Hagens (8-4, 3.95).
July 23, 2014
With hundreds of budding princesses roaming Pensacola Bayfront Stadium in their dresses and tiaras, something magical happened in the first inning.
The Pensacola Blue Wahoos scored seven runs on eight hits, including five doubles, and went on to defeat the Mobile BayBears, 8-4, on 18 hits.
Daddy-Daughter night at the ballpark included a pre-game parade where Little Mermaids, Snow Whites and Jasmines pranced down the first baseline to loud applause. It included Wahoos Manager Delino DeShields young daughter helping her daddy deliver the lineup card to the umpires and join a quartet of other princesses to sing, “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” during the seventh inning stretch.
Whether it was magic spells at work or not, DeShields was just happy to see his hitters hitting. During the team’s 1-8 skid entering Tuesday’s game, the Wahoos hit .239 as a team and had 77 strikeouts and 67 hits.
All nine starters got on base during the game and only pitcher Daniel Corcino was hitless. In fact, seven of the nine hitters had at least two hits and Ryan Wright, Kyle Waldrop and Juan Duran all had three.
DeShields said it was the first time his 7-year-old daughter, Delaney, got to sit in the dugout and hangout on the field. They watched the 7-minute fireworks show to Disney tunes together after the game.
“She might be a good luck charm,” DeShields said. “I’m going to have to start bringing her all the time.”
Yorman Rodriguez, who went 2-5, including a double to start the game, said one of the most special feelings he has is when he hears his toddler in the stands behind the backstop shouting his name.
“The whole game she yells, ‘Poppie! Poppie!’” Rodriguez said. “She yells loud, too. It’s awesome.”
Mobile scored three of its runs on a homerun over the right-center fence by Jake Lamb, who is leading or near the top in every offensive category in the Southern League. The Arizona Diamondbacks No. 9 prospect according to MLB.com has 13 homers and 76 RBI.
The third game of the five-game series with the Arizona Diamonbacks Double-A affiliate the Mobile BayBears gets underway at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday. RHP Jon Moscot (5-9, 3.19) takes the mound for the Wahoos and is scheduled to be opposed by the BayBears RHP A.J. Schugel (4-1, 3.70).
by Tommy Thrall
July 22, 2014
Minor league baseball’s strikeout kings for most of the season went head-to-head Monday night at Pensacola Bayfront Stadium.
The result? The Pensacola Blue Wahoos Ben Lively retook the strikeout mantle with four strikeouts for 135 on the year. But the Mobile BayBears Aaron Blair had 9 Ks to up his total to 134 on the season and got the win in his Double-A debut.
Plus, Blair earned the first hit off Lively in the game in the fifth inning with a bloop single to left field.
Mobile won the opening game of the five-game series, 6-3, extending its winning streak to seven games. The BayBears are now 44-4 when leading after the seventh inning and the first half Southern League South Division winners now lead the second half, too, with a 20-9 record and are 62-36 overall.
Meanwhile, Pensacola fell to 10-21 in the second half and 41-60 overall.
Lively, who fell to 0-4, was trying for his first win at Double-A with the Wahoos, but left the game after walking the first two batters in the seventh and reliever Carlos Gonzalez allowed one of those BayBears to score. Lively did not allow a hit for the first 4.1 innings and only gave up two singles but ended up walking seven.
Blair, the Diamondbacks No. 3 prospect according to MLB.com, said his debut win was even more special since he and Lively have known each other for four years, playing in the same division in college, pitching as teammates for the same team in Cape Cod League (summer collegiate) and facing each other in High-A.
“It was about as good a debut as you can hope for,” Blair said. “It was cool getting to pitch and hit against a good friend.”
Lively, a Gulf Breeze product, said he feels no pressure about getting his first win of the season for the Wahoos. Lively has allowed 25 walks, hit 2 batters and given up 23 hits in 30.2 innings for Pensacola, so far.
“Once I have good games and not give up a lot of free passes and put up zeros the wins will start coming,” he said. “If I make the right pitches, I can get anybody out.”
Pensacola manager Delino DeShields gave Lively a pep talk outside the locker room after the game, telling him to stay in control of his emotions.
“Ben, even though he walked seven guys, still gave us a good game,” DeShields said. “I’m still waiting for him, and I don’t want to say this the wrong way, to control his emotions. I think it’s getting the better of him sometimes.”
Pensacola kept from getting shutout for the 11th time when catcher Ross Perez hit a two-out, three-run shot over the right field wall that made the final score, 6-3.
The second game of the five-game series with Arizona Diamondbacks Double-A affiliate the Mobile BayBears gets underway at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. RHP Daniel Corcino (8-8, 4.36) takes the mound for the Wahoos and is scheduled to be opposed by the BayBears RHP Mike Lee (6-4, 4.14).
by Tommy Thralll