A-oh-Kade: McClure's scoreless outing wasted in 3-1 Dash loss

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — It’s been a rough couple of days at the plate for the Winston-Salem Dash, who fell 3-1 to the Fayetteville Woodpeckers on Friday night, their second straight loss. They picked up six hits yesterday, and couldn’t even match that today, garnering a mere two, a scintilla of offense. Kade McClure pitched five innings of scoreless baseball, but the bullpen was unable to maintain the shutout while waiting for the bats to warm up.

Tyler Frost drew a walk to open the Dash half of the first inning, and there was the glimmer of hope of a big inning to start the game, but then Mitch Roman grounded into a double play immediately after. Jameson Fisher hit his team-leading 20th double to start the second inning but didn’t advance to third. Roman singled to open the fourth, then Steele Walker popped out and Fisher grounded into a double play. Opportunities kept arising and immediately being dispensed with. Part of this was Jojanse Torres, the Woodpeckers starter who was throwing 98. Part of this is just the ebbs and flows of the minor league baseball season. All of it can be frustrating.

The lone Winston run came in the bottom of the sixth in answer to Fayetteville’s two scored in the top of the inning. Tate Blackman, who’s been getting regular playing time since he returned from injury to find Madrigal promoted to AA, led off the inning with a walk. Frost was lucky not to ground into a double play, beating the throw by the barest of inches if at all. Wisely, he removed himself from the potential future double play situation by stealing second base. After Roman struck out, Walker poked a ball to the third baseman Jonathan Arauz, playing in the region of Short Stop thanks to a shift; for whatever reason, Arauz just… didn’t make the play, or even really make an effort. He ran over the ball and almost didn’t even try to reach down to pick it up. No complaints by the Dash and Frost easily scored.

Roman’s single and Fisher’s double were the only hits of the game by the Dash; Frost, Fisher, Craig Dedelow, Jordan George, and Blackman all drew walks. Frost stole a base, and Fisher and Roman both made errors. Evan Skoug had a passed ball behind the plate.

The only thing holding McClure back from going much deeper in this game was his pitch count, which saw itself rise after going high in the count to several batters and dealing with many foul balls and scattered hits. McClure was taken out at 90 pitches, 53 of those strikes; despite not having his best control, he only walked one batter. Kade is far from the worst offender in the Sox system when it comes to walking guys, and we’d like for him to keep it that way.

This was McClure’s sixth start at the High-A level, and of those six, half of them (including tonight) have been scoreless outings. This is the first time he’s gone less than 5.2 innings, but it’s understandable with the pitch count reaching those upper limits. He saw himself pitching out of several jams, the most perilous of which was a bases-loaded situation in the second. He walked his only batter of the game with one out, then, with two outs, allowed two straight infield singles. He picked up a huge strikeout to get out of it with damage done to nothing but his pitch count.

Tyler Johnson’s rehab affair continues. The 23-year-old threw two innings today, his fourth appearance with the Dash and the first time he’s thrown more than one inning. It did not go great, and after a Fisher error and a double, a Scott Manea single scored two runs, putting the Woodpeckers permanently up over the Dash. Johnson did have a 1-2-3 seventh inning, but too late, too late. Will Kincanon entered in relief and mowed through Fayetteville in the eighth before two singles, a sac bunt, and a wild pitch made it 4-2 Woodpeckers. Kincanon did strike out four over two innings, walking zero batters, something he can hopefully keep up.

Konnor Pilkington gets the call tomorrow at 6 pm, trying to put the Dash back in the win column.

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  • fb_avatar

    Juli. I like your series, thanks. I know this isn't probably your territory but I'm asking you because you're really good at replying.
    Mystery #1 - Where is Victor Diaz?
    Mystery #2 - How were we able to get Damek Tomscha? Can't find any info anywhere. Seems awfully quick to get rid of someone who hasn't ever had a bad full season.
    Would like your opinion on a couple things.
    1. Looks like a lot of the good prospects we got for all of those trades have gone south. Like maybe our player development team is not up to the task. Your thoughts?
    2. I really think that our international prospect signings are among the worst in all baseball. I'm going to do some checking and tracking their stats as they move through the system. Something tells me they will have a very poor record. Your thoughts? No mentioning the skimming fiasco as an excuse, it's been too long.

  • In reply to Jim Pedigo:

    Hi Jim! I had a big long response typed out and then accidentally closed out of the page, so I'll try to recreate the gist of it!
    Mystery #1 - No idea! I am starting to get the feeling that he will not pitch more than the 12 innings he already did for the organization several years ago!
    Mystery #2 - I think it just sometimes works out that way. I don't know what's up with the Phillies system but maybe there was someone they were more interested in seeing.
    1. I honestly, truly believe that this year was a fluke with everyone just slumping at the same time. I think some of it is a culling of the herd as they all advance through the levels, but I'm not willing to indict a system that has produced Luis Robert, Eloy, Tim Anderson, etc. yet. If it's this time next year and the same prospects are still having the same struggles, then I'm more concerned.
    2. This is very out of my territory! I'm sure you've already read this but here's Mike's writeup on this year's group of signings: http://www.chicagonow.com/future-sox/2019/07/white-sox-sign-five-players-on-international-signing-day-2019/
    As it is, the DSL team has some really exciting performers, like 17-year-old Benyamin Bailey, who's batting over .400. Elsewhere, Robert obviously has been a huge success. Yolbert Sanchez is definitely an interesting guy. Micker Adolfo has been held back by injuries but not much else. Bryan Ramos is also 17 and is already with the AZL, where he's batting .375. Luis Mieses is 19 and hitting .292 with Great Falls. So, there are definitely some spots of hope from the international crop.

    Might not be exactly what you're looking for, but I hope some of this helps!

  • fb_avatar

    I knew you were the right person to ask, thank you. Just one more question. Victor Diaz seems like damaged goods. Couldn't they ask for someone else? Or did the Sox pass his physical and now it's too late?

  • In reply to Jim Pedigo:

    Honestly, no idea. I'm sure at the time they thought that he would be able to produce for them at some point. He did pitch in the organization a tiny little bit so I think at that point they thought he was healthy? I think without seeing internal reports and notes we'll never know.

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