May 2012

May 24, 2012 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (31-15) at Albuquerque Isotopes (27-20)
5:35 PM PDT at Isotopes Park
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

Eric Hacker is going for his eighth win this season and 24th in his Grizzlies career. He is currently tied with Matt Palmer for third on the Grizzlies’ all-time career wins list with 23. In 2010, Hacker set the Grizzlies franchise record for wins in a season with 16. The right-hander has recorded a decision in each of his eight starts with Fresno this season (7-1).

Hacker and Albuquerque starting pitcher Will Savage are tied for the PCL’s lead in wins with seven each. Savage started the 2012 season pitching out of the Albuquerque bullpen, making five appearances as a reliever and posting a 3-0 record from the ‘pen. Hacker, meanwhile, made one start for the San Francisco Giants on April 27th.

The Grizzlies recorded 18 hits in last night’s win, which fell one base knock short of matching their season-high (19 on April 21st at Tacoma). Fresno had a combined 13 hits in the first two games of the series, but the Grizzlies pace the PCL with 492 hits (Albuquerque is fifth with 472). They are batting .319 (263-for-824) in 22 road games.

May 23, 2012 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (30-15) at Albuquerque Isotopes (27-19)
5:35 PM PDT at Isotopes Park
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

Roger Kieschnick has reached base in each of the 21 road games this season. His 21-game on-base streak on the road is the longest in the PCL in 2012. He walked twice last night to extend the streak, and he has posted a .412 on-base percentage in the 21 games.

The Grizzlies have lost five consecutive games to the Isotopes dating back to last season. Fresno has also lost back-to-back road games for the first time since August 3-4, 2011 at Iowa. The last time Fresno lost three straight road games was from July 17-20, 2011 at Sacramento and Reno.

After recording the winning decision in his last outing, Fresno starting pitcher Brian Burres is looking for his first back-to-back winning decisions since April 29th and May 6th in 2010 with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The left-hander has a 80-75 record over 353 games in his professional career (Major and Minor Leagues).

May 22, 2012 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (30-14) at Albuquerque Isotopes (26-19)
5:35 PM PDT at Isotopes Park
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

Justin Christian may have went hitless last night, ending his hitting streak at 14 games, but the centerfielder walked in his final at-bat of the game, thus extending his consecutive on-base streak to 15 games. If Christian reaches base safely in tonight’s game, he will tie Roger Kieschnick (April 16-May 2) for the longest consecutive game on-base streak by a Grizzlies hitter this season at 16 games.

Grizzlies manager Bob Mariano is going for his 200th career win tonight. After posting a 30-14 record this season, Mariano currently holds a 199-183 career record (.521 winning percentage). Mariano entered the season with a 169-169 record over three seasons.

The Grizzlies have the best road record in the PCL with a 15-5 mark (.750), leading the second-place Sacramento River Cats (14-7, .667). Including last night’s loss, three of the Grizzlies five losses on the road this season have occurred in a walk-off fashion. The other two walk-off losses for Fresno were on April 23 at Tacoma and May 6 at Colorado Springs.

May 21, 2012 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (30-13) at Albuquerque Isotopes (25-19)
5:35 PM PDT at Isotopes Park
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

While the Grizzlies are locked in their battle for first place in the Pacific Southern Division, the Albuquerque Isotopes are also fighting off a close second-place opponent, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, in the American Southern Division. Fresno is ahead of Sacramento (29-15) by 1.5 games despite the Grizzlies being the only team in Triple-A with 30 wins. Albuquerque, meanwhile, leads Oklahoma City by a half game. The RedHawks are 24-19. On a related note, PCL playoffs are 107 days away.

The Grizzlies lost the last three games against the Isotopes in 2011, but Fresno won the final three games last played at Isotopes Park between the two teams in 2010. Either way tonight is going to extend some sort of winning/losing streak: four consecutive losses to Albuquerque or four-straight wins against the Isotopes in Albuquerque. Only three players who played in the final game of 2010 between Fresno and Albuquerque are still on the Grizzlies’ active roster today: Brock Bond, Jackson Williams and Eric Hacker.

Todd Linden is coming off an impressive four-game series at Round Rock. The switch hitter went 12-for-18 (.667) with three doubles, two home runs, nine RBIs and nine runs scored. Linden has driven in a run in five consecutive games, giving him 35 RBIs on the season. He has also scored three runs in each of his last three games and recorded multiple hits in the last four contests.

May 18, 2012 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (27-13) at Round Rock Express (18-23)
5:05 PM PDT at The Dell Diamond
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

With a win, the Fresno Grizzlies will maintain the best road record in the PCL. They are 12-4 (.750) on the road, slightly better than Sacramento and their 12-5 (.706) road record. Fresno, Sacramento and the Reno Aces are the only three teams in the PCL with winning records on the road this season.

Tonight the Grizzlies will face a left-handed starter for the seventh time in their last 10 games. Fresno is 2-4 in the last six games against left-handed starting pitchers entering tonight. For the season, the Grizzlies are batting .277 against left-handed pitchers, compared to .310 against right-handed pitchers.

Brock Bond has a hit in 13 of his last 14 games and is batting .565 (26-for-46) in the month of May. Bond leads all of Minor League Baseball with his .565 batting average and .615 on-base percentage during May.

5/17/12 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (26-13) at Round Rock Express (18-22)
5:05 pm PDT at The Dell Diamond
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

The Fresno Grizzlies are looking to snap two losing streaks tonight. After starting the season with eight consecutive victories in series openers, the Grizzlies have lost their last two.

Fresno has also lost six consecutive games to the Round Rock Express, with the last Grizzlies victory occurring on August 5th, 2010 at Round Rock. Round Rock switched affiliates, however, in 2011, going from the Houston Astros to the Texas Rangers. Therefore, Fresno has been defeated by the Texas Rangers’ Triple-A affiliate in their last four meetings. Fresno beat Oklahoma City, then the Rangers’ Triple-A team, on May 18th game for the last Grizzlies victory against the Texas organization.

Nick Noonan currently owns an 11-game hitting streak, tied with Roger Kieschnick for the longest by a Grizzlies hitter this season. Noonan is batting .313 (15-for-48) over the 11-game stretch. Noonan’s career-high hitting streak is currently set at 14 games, which he achieved from May 31-June 19 in 2008 with Single-A Augusta.

5/15/12 – 3 Things To Watch For

Omaha Storm Chasers (25-13) vs. Fresno Grizzlies (25-14)
11:05 am game at Chukchansi Park
Radio: 105.5 FM “The Truth”

Nick Noonan is looking to extend his hitting streak to 11 games, which would match Roger Kieschnick for the longest hitting streak by a Grizzlies hitter this season. Noonan recorded one hit last night to give him 10 consecutive games with a hit.

Justin Christian is also in the midst of a hitting streak, with his sitting at nine games. Christian has multiple hits in his last four games, including a 2-for-4 performance last night. Over the nine-game stretch, Christian is batting .400 (16-for-40). For the season, he is batting .378, which is second best in the PCL entering today.

The Grizzlies need a win in today’s game to salvage a tie for the Omaha series. If the Grizzlies were to lose, it would be their first back-to-back series losses since August 12-19, 2011 against Albuquerque and Round Rock. Fresno has not lost a series to Omaha since 2003.

5/12/12 – 3 Things To Watch For

Omaha Storm Chasers (23-13) vs. Fresno Grizzlies (24-11)
7:05 pm game at Chukchansi Park

The Grizzlies will take on the Omaha Storm Chasers for the first game of a four-game series. The series will be the only meeting between the two teams in the 2012 regular season. Fresno has not a lost a series to the Omaha franchise since 2003, but in each of the last three seasons, the two teams have split their four-game sets. Fresno beat Omaha three games to one in 2008 for the last series victory.

The Grizzlies and Storm Chasers have the best and third-best records in the PCL, respectively. Both teams enter the series losers of their last four games. Omaha lost three of four at Sacramento while Fresno dropped three of four against Iowa.

Fresno starting pitcher Brian Burres is looking for his first win in a Grizzlies uniform at Chukchansi Park. In three starts this season, the left-hander is 0-1 with a 6.75 ERA (12 er, 16.0 ip). He does have two wins in his career at Chukchansi Park, however, both of which occurred in 2009 when he was with the Las Vegas 51s. The last win was on July 4, 2009 when he held the Grizzlies to four runs on six hits in seven innings.

May 11th, 2012 – 3 Things To Watch For

Fresno Grizzlies (24-10) vs. Iowa Cubs (14-19)
7:05 PM game at Chukchansi Park
Ag Night, presented by Bayer CropScience

The Fresno Grizzlies will need a win to ensure a tie in the four-game series against the Iowa Cubs. Iowa has won the first and third games of the set. Fresno has not lost a series yet this season after taking three-of-four in the first seven series of the season. They then won two of three in a rain-shortened series at Colorado Springs last weekend.

Brock Bond has an eight-game hitting streak, currently the longest such streak by a Grizzlies hitter. Bond is batting .696 (16-for-23) with a .731 on-base percentage over the eight-game stretch. It is Bond’s longest hitting streak since the 2010 season when the switch hitter registered a hit in 10 consecutive games between August 28th and September 6th with Double-A Richmond.

With a win, Grizzlies starting pitcher Matt Yourkin will tie Steve Connelly (1999-2001, 2003) for fifth place on the Grizzlies’ all-time career wins list. Yourkin currently has 18 wins in his Fresno career. The southpaw has pitched for Fresno since 2010.