Obama’s In Roanoke, Salem’s In Lynchburg…
Rumor has it that while visiting the Roanoke Valley, President Obama wanted to attend a Salem Sox game at LewisGale Field. Alas, with the 460 Series moving to the Hill City tonight, the leader of the free world will solely be speaking at a rally in downtown Roanoke.
For more on the President’s trip to the Star City, here ya go: http://www.roanoke.com/politics/wb/311550
The entirety of tonight’s Salem Sox broadcast will be heard on www.salemsox.com, while most will be aired on WFIR. When the President is speaking, the #1 NewsTalk station in the region will bring everyone his comments live. Please make it snappy, Mr. President.
Game notes are below, and we’ll be live tonight just after 7 PM…
Talk to you soon,
July 13, 2012 7:05 Salem Red Sox (48-42-1, 7-14) vs Lynchburg Hillcats (50-41, 11-10) Game #92
City Stadium Lynchburg, VA Road Game #49
Probable Starters: RHP Yeiper Castillo (0-0, 1.50) vs RHP Cody Martin (9-6, 3.13)
One Game A Week: The Salem Sox are currently seven games back of the first place Myrtle Beach Pelicans in the Southern Division second half standings. With 49 games remaining in the season, that averages out to the Sox needing to make up one game a week over the final 35% of the 2012 campaign in order to advance to the playoffs. In the first half, Salem possessed the second best record in the league, but finished three games behind Winston-Salem in the Southern Division and failed to end a 24-year city first-half title drought. Lynchburg finished two and a half games worse than Salem in the first half, but clinched a playoff berth on the back of their residence in the mediocre Northern Division.
Take Two For Castillo: As the four-game series shifts cities to Lynchburg, Salem sends Yeiper Castillo to the mound for his second Carolina League start. If not for a bullpen implosion against Frederick this past Sunday, Castillo would be 1-0. The righthander tossed six strong innings, allowing just one run in his Advanced-A debut. Castillo was a New York-Penn League All-Star in 2009 and a South Atlantic League All-Star in 2010 before his ‘10 season was derailed by a shoulder injury that eventually required surgery and forced him to miss the entire 2011 campaign.
July Heat: The Salem Sox are hitting .292 as a team so far in July, the second-best clip in the league and only one point behind Frederick for the league’s best average this month. But despite the solid offense, Salem’s just 4-7 so far this month, even with Potomac for the worst record in the league. In July, Shannon Wilkerson is hitting .390 (16-for-41), Brandon Jacobs is hitting .382 (13-for-34), while Christian Vazquez is a red-hot .393 (11-for-28) in eight games this month.
Ready in a Pinch: Utility infielder James Kang has filled many roles for Salem this year, but on Thursday night he continued his proficiency as a pinch-hitter. In three pinch-hitting opportunities this season, Kang has reached base all three times, with a double, a walk, and a hit-by pitch. Although Kang owns three triples on the season, Thursday’s eighth inning double was his first of the season.
Double Duo: Tonight’s action features the two Carolina Leaguers who are currently tied for the league lead with 27 doubles. Salem’s Travis Shaw and Lynchburg’s Nick Ahmed are even at the top of the list, one ahead of Jackie Bradley, Jr., who recorded 26 doubles in just 67 games in the first half. Michael Almanzar is fourth in the league with 25 doubles. Shaw is tied for the league lead with 43 extra-base hits, while Ahmed is tied for fourth with 36.
Slugging Sox: Collectively, the Salem Sox have hit .277 on the season, the top overall mark in the league and 19 points better than the league average of .258. The Red Sox have the second most hits in the league, trailing only Winston-Salem, and Salem also leads the circuit in walks with more than three and a half per game. The Sox and Dash are the only clubs in the league averaging more than five runs per game. Salem is also #1 in doubles and stolen bases.