Monday, November 17, 2008

Hawaii Winter Baseball Champions

The Waikiki Beachboys (19-17) emerged as champions of Hawaii Winter Baseball, winning 5-1 over the West Oahu Canefires.

Not a big deal really, except that the Beachboys scratched and clawed their way into the title game after a very slow start to the season. They only staved off elimination in their last game of the season, after being down in the top of the 9th. Along the way, the big bats came through, the pitching settled down, and the closer (you know whose brother) slammed the door shut and put out a few fires.

Of course, we're most interested in the Yankee prospects. Injuries got to Austin Romine and Damon Sublett, but both were solid contributors. Andrew Brackman did well, considering he's coming off of TJ surgery and this was his first taste of professional ball. Jeremy Bleich may have been the surprise player of the lot, outperforming predecessors Joba Chamberlain and Ian Kennedy.

I don't know what the Baby Bombers think of Hawaii, but I'd be surprised if they didn't enjoy the experience. Especially after capping off the season the way they did.

Congratulations to the Beachboys, the Yankee prospects, and especially Jeremy Bleich, who made the 2008 All-League Team

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Game 30

Jeremy Bleich was dominant last night, pitching 5 shutout innings while striking out 9 in a 2-0 shutout of the Honolulu Sharks.

Damon Sublett played 2B and went 0-for-3. He did have a nice defensive play in the top of the 5th to rob Ryo Hijirisawa of a basehit.

Friday night's win stretched the division lead over the Sharks to 2.5 games. Just a month ago, playing in the league championship was just a pipe dream, but the Beachboys have won 10 of their last 12 games to overtake the Honolulu Sharks. In that stretch, Andrew Brackman and Jeremy Bleich have gone a combined 4-1.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Game 28 & Minor League News

On Sunday the Waikiki BeachBoys came from behind in the top of the ninth to win 6-5. No Yankee prospects played.

After two rough starts in AFL, Phil Hughes bounced back nicely with a near perfect outing. Hughes struck out 8 and allowed only a single in his 5 innings. He left with a 3-0 lead, but got a no-decision as the Javelinas ended up losing lost 5-3. Kevin Russo was 2-for-5 with an RBI, but also committed a key error. Austin Jackson was 1-for-4. recap of the Yankee farm system spotlights the top producers.

Very cool Flashback on the minor league season.

Season in Review from Check out the win-loss records for the Yankee minor league teams.

AFL notebook taking note of Kevin Whelan's teeny-tiny ERA.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Game 27 & Updates

The Waikiki BeachBoys lost in an ugly gameand fell back into a division tie with the Sharks.

Damon Sublett played 2B and went 2-for-5, with 2 RBI and 2 runs scored. Austin Romine (DH) was hitless with a walk.


Since it's a slow Sunday with no AFL games and the BeachBoys playing an afternoon game, it might be a good time to catch up with the Yankees playing winterball.

Arizona Fall League:

Phil Hughes is having an up and down season at Arizona Fall League. The main purpose is to get innings, and Hughes has logged 12.2 so far.

Jeff Marquez is a reliever, no, a starter for the Javelinas. A mixed bag for Marquez, who had 4 bullpen appearances before converting to a starter. After a rough first start, Marquez had a much better showing in his second start.

Humberto Sanchez is probably wishing he were anywhere but Arizona. He's got a whopping BAA of .433 and a WHIP of 3.11. Definitely a character-building opportunity.

Kevin Whelan is probably wishing he could stay in Arizona. He's having a great AFL season, allowing 1 earned run in 6 appearances. Whelan has pitched to a sparkling 0.90 ERA out of the bullpen.

Juan Miranda is in the midst of an 0-for-14 slump, but is still carrying a .333 batting average, thanks to his torrid start in the AFL.

Kevin Russo is quite the jack-of-all-trades. Playing all over the infield and out in left field, Russo is hitting .358 with a homerun and 3 stolen bases. There is one bad trend, though. Russo has struck out 9 times in the last 4 games (15 total for the season).

Austin Jackson started off hot in Arizona, but has cooled off a bit. One bright spot? He really likes hitting lefties. Why are 75% of Jackson's at-bats against righties, Mr. Manager?

Hawaii Winter Baseball:

Jeremy Bleich had a rough start in winter ball, but has bounced back, allowing just 2 runs over his last 3 starts (19.2 innings). Bleich's is dramatically trending down in walks and up in strikeouts, striking out 8 in his last outing.

Andrew Brackman is finally getting his sea legs in Hawaii. He's allowed just 2 earned runs over his last 2 starts, earning wins in both to improve to 3-3.

Austin Romine is back after missing two weeks due to being hit by a pitch.

Damon Sublett was also out for an extended period, but is doing well in the infield. Sublett is batting .294 with 15 RBI.

Caribbean Baseball:

Justin Christian is playing outfield for the Caneros de los Mochis. He's hitting .238 with 7 stolen bases (0 CS).

Oneli Perez is a relief pitcher for the Tigres del Licey. He had one rough outing, but hasn't allowed a run in the other 5 appearances.

Francisco Cervelli is catching for the Cardenales de Lara. His bat hasn't quite shown up yet, but Cervelli has hit a homerun and scored 3 runs.

Game 26

The BeachBoys won their 7th straight game on Friday night, to take the lead in the division. Damon Sublett played 2B, but struggled at the plate, going 0-for-4. Austin Romine was behind the plate, going 1-for-4 with a triple and a run scored in the key inning of the 3-2 win.


Saturday, November 1, 2008

Game 25-Brackman Wins

Andrew Brackman pitched well on Thursday, allowing only 2 runs (1 ER) over 6 innings. Brackman worked into and out of trouble in the first, when he loaded the bases after a wild pitch on a strikeout kept the inning alive. The 5-2 win over the Honolulu Sharks secured a sweep and brought the two teams into a tie in the division standings.

It was deuces wild for Damon Sublett, who had been out of action since October 14. He played 2B and was 2-for-4, with 2 RBI and 2 runs scored. Sublett hit a 2 run go-ahead homerun in the 5th inning.


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Game 24 & Other News

The Beachboys blew the Sharks out of the water last night in a 9-0 win that pulled them to within a game in the standings. No Yankees played.

Congratulations to Pat Venditte for winning the Best Short-Season Reliever award. The switch-pitcher earned 23 saves while accumulating a microscopic ERA of 0.83.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Contest: Where in the World...

...are these players going to be in 2009?

1) CC Sabathia
2) Manny Ramirez
3) AJ Burnett
4) Mark Teixeira
5) Derek Lowe
6) Bobby Abreu
7) Jason Giambi
8) Mike Mussina
9) Ben Sheets
10)Carl Pavano

Contest Rules:

* Deadline is one week after the conclusion of the World Series
* Post answers in comments section or e-mail to:
* Prize is bragging rights and/or a nominal prize TBD
* Winner to be announced after all players have signed (or retired).

Game 23-Wet and Wild

Baseball finally resumed in Hawaii after a wet week. The Beachboys jumped right into it, tying it up after giving up 2 at the bottom of the first. The last I saw, the Sharks had taken a 6-2 lead in the fifth. So it was nice to see that the Beachboys came back to win. Jeremy Papelbon came into to get the final out with the bases loaded and 3 runs having already scored. The 12-9 win helped pull the Beachboys to within 2 games of the Sharks.

More importantly, it was nice to see Austin Romine back in action, as he hasn't been in a game since he was hit by a pitch on October 21st. Austin caught the entire game and went 0-4 with a walk.

Here's the AFL Notebook for the week.

And finally, congratulations to Tony Franklin and the Trenton Thunder team for winning the MiLBY award for Best AA Team.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Game 22-Bleich wins again

While Phil Hughes stumbled in the Rising Stars Showcase and Jeff Marquez struggled in his first AFL start, Jeremy Bleich is still going strong in Hawaii.

Bleich pitched well to earn his second straight win. Bleich went 7 innings, giving up two earned runs and striking out eight.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Game 21

The Beachboys won 9-8 over the Canefires on Wednesday afternoon, to improve to 9-11-1. No Yankees played in the game. Recap

The Javelinas busted out their whoopin' sticks today, just laying the wood to the Phoenix Desert Dogs in a 16-5 win. Juan Miranda played 1B, but struggled at the plate, going 0-for-5 with a walk.

Justin Christian led off and played CF today for the Mochis. He was 1-for-5 in the 6-3 win.

Game 20-Brackman Wins & Other News

1. The Beachboys held on to win 8-5 over the Canefires. Andrew Brackman was solid, allowing 2 runs (1 earned) and 5 hits in five innings. Unfortunately Austin Romine (DH) was hit by a pitch and replaced by a pinch runner in his first at-bat.

Recap and Gameday

2. The Javelinas had a wild game as well, winning 18-11 over the other Peoria club. The Javelinas were down 6-0, but put up an 8-spot in the second to take the lead for good. Austin Jackson (3-for-6) kept the rally going with a 2-out single to drive in the fifth run in that inning. Kevin Russo pinch ran and took over at third. Russo was 1-for-2 with two RBI. Jeff Marquez allowed one unearned run over 1.2 innings. He gave up no hits, but did issue four walks.

Recap and Gameday

3. In other news, congratulations to Phil Hughes who has been chosen to pitch for the National division in the Rising Stars Showcase on Friday. Austin Jackson also made the Showcase roster .

4. Some Yankee notables in this week's Arizona Fall League Notebook

5. Justin Christian hit a leadoff homerun in a 3-2 Mochis win. Box Score

6. Oneli Perez is also playing winter ball for Licey of the Dominican Winter League. He's only made 2 appearances so far, so the easiest way to follow him might be to check out his player page .

7. Don't forget to check out Humberto's blog. Seems like he's open to e-mailing back to people, but please be nice since he's new to blogging.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Game 19-Shutout Sunday

1. Waikiki Beachboys were shutout in a crisp 2-0 game. No Yankee players in the game.

2. No AFL action today. Sunday, it appears, is a day of rest in the league.

3. If certain NFL perennials don't stop dragging their feet, they are in serious danger of being shutout of the playoffs.

4. And in case you haven't heard, the Red Sox have been shut out of the World Series.

5. One exception: Justin Christian was 1-for-5 with an RBI in a 6-4 win for the Mochis.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Game 18

The Waikiki Beachboys lost 7-2 on Saturday. Austin Romine caught and went 1-for-3 with a double and a walk. Recap and Gameday.

The Javelinas won in spite of the 8 spot allowed by Phil Hughes in the 3rd inning. Kevin Russo and Juan Miranda both helped Phil avoid the loss in the 14-11 win. Russo was perfect for the day and pushed his average above .300. Miranda continued his torrid hitting, knocking in three runs. Austin Jackson had a hit and Sanchez earned a hold.

Game 17-Wow, Lau Lau

"Wow. Lau Lau." means unreal, unbelievable. That's what Jeremy Bleich was last night. Perfect until the 5th. Going 6.2 innings and only giving up 1 (unearned) run.

Gameday and Recap

Friday, October 17, 2008

Game 16 and Other Minor Stuff

The Waikiki Beach Boys lost last night 7-4. The only Yankee prospect to play was catcher Austin Romine who was 1-for-3 with a walk. Recap and Gameday .

In AFL action, Austin Jackson bounced back nicely from a mini-slump.

In other news, Phil Hughes is en fuego . The notebook also has notes on the progress of other Yankee players in AFL, HWB, and Caribbean baseball.

Don Juan is still king of the hill. Not even close at this point.

Will have to keep an eye on OF Justin Christian, who is playing for the Caneros de los Mochis in the Liga Mexicana del Pacifico.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Game 15-Ouch

Andrew Brackman took the loss tonight, although his line isn't quite as ugly as the final score of 15-4.

Here's some weird numerology: 4IP, 4BB, 4K, 3H, 3R, 3ER, 1HR.

Control issues, walks, stolen bases, and wild pitches spoiled the outing. When Brackman left the game the Beach Boys were down 3-2. It is worth noting that 2 of the runs scored had reached base on balls. Valuable lessons to be learned, for sure.

Damon Sublett started at second base and was 1-for-4 with 2 RBI and 2 runs scored.

Gameday and Recap

Minor League Notes:

1. Congratulations to Phil Hughes, who was named AFL Pitcher of the Week for his performance on opening day.

2. The AFL Notebook spotlights some of the Yankee players in a recap of the first week.

3. Wondering where Buster Posey of the Beach Boys is? He's gone off to instructs in Scottsdale, Arizona to get steady work.

Game 14-Nil

Nil. Nothing. Zero. That was the result of my sports Sunday.

1. The Waikiki Beach Boys played to a 10th inning tie.

2. Sublett (DH) and Romine (C) both had 0-fers.

3. The team I'm rooting for in the NLCS lost.

4. My NFL team lost (in a rather ugly fashion).

5. The #6 Rainbow Wahine were swept at home in NCAA women's volleyball.

6. No game for the Javelinas.

7. My NBA team won, but that's still nothing. Preseason results have zero value.

Here's the recap of a well-pitched game that the Beach Boys were winning 1-0 until the 8th inning.

Hoping that the sports gods to make it up to me tomorrow, especially in the ALCS.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Game 13-Breakout Game for Sublett

1. Damon Sublett helped key the offense as Waikiki went wild on the Canefires yesterday. Following the old adage that things come in bunches of three, Damon had 3 hits, 3 RBIs, and 3 runs scored. He also had his first homerun of the season. Recap

The two teams face off again on Sunday at 1:00 pm HST.

2. The struggles continued for CF Austin Jackson. He and 3B Kevin Russo each went 0-for-4 in the 5-2 loss to the Peoria Saguaros. Recap.

No games scheduled for Sunday. Phil Hughes should be on the mound when the Javelinas face Phoenix on Monday at 12:35 pm MST.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Game 12-Bleich

1. Jeremy Bleich pitched six shutout innings, earning his second straight ND as the Waikiki won 2-1. Austin Romine caught and went 2-for-4 at the plate in the game, which had no score until the 8th. The Beach Boys were able to escape a jam in the bottom of the 9th and improve their record to 5-7. Recap

2. It was Yankee Day in Peoria. Humberto Sanchez took the loss in a rough first outing. Juan Miranda was the DH (2-for-4) and held on to his "batting title" for another day. Kevin Whelan punched out 3 in 1.2 innings of scoreless relief. Kevin Russo played left field and got his first hit (1-for-5). Austin Jackson had a cameo appearance as a pinch hitter (strikeout). Recap.

The Peoria Javelinas (3-1) can even the score when they host the Peoria Saguaros (4-0) in tonight's rematch.

3. A player from each each of the major league teams will blog about their experience at Arizona Fall League. Humberto "Humbe" Sanchez is scheduled to post on Saturdays.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Game 11-Minor League Notes

1. Andrew Brackman pitched today for the Beach Boys, going 3.1 innings in a shortened 4-0 loss. Recap

2. Juan Miranda rocked in his first AFL appearance of the season.

3. Around the Minors features the headliners in the Arizona Fall League.

4. Here's a great article on Kyle Higashioka's experience at instructs.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Game 10

The Beach Boys fell 3-1 in a shortened game Wednesday afternoon.

Damon Sublett was the DH and went 1 for 3. Austin Romine was behind the plate, but hitless in the game.

Gameday and MLB Recap

Another matinee game for the two teams on Thursday at 3:00 pm HST.

Earlier in the day, play continued in the Arizona Fall League. Down 5-0 in the fourth, the Javelinas came back with 7 runs to take the lead. Austin Jackson had an RBI single in the big frame, and Jeff Marquez earned a hold with 2 innings of 1-hit relief. The Javelinas moved to 2-0 as they held on to win 8-7.

MLB Recap.

On tap: Phoenix Desert Dogs @ Peoria Javelinas 7:05PM MST

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Game 9-Double Trouble

The Waikiki Beach Boys doubled up the Honolulu Sharks 8-4 in a shortened game Tuesday afternoon.

Damon Sublett played 2B and had an RBI double in the big fourth inning.

Gameday and MLB Recap

The Beach Boys and Sharks finish up their two game set on Wednesday at 3:00.

Arizona Fall League started earlier today. Phil Hughes, Austin Jackson, and Kevin Russo helped lead the Peoria Javelinas to a 10-3 win over the Surprise Rafters in the opener.

MLB Recap with a link to the box score.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Game 8

Yankee catching prospect Austin Romine had a busy day behind the plate and on the basepaths. Romine guided the Waikiki pitchers to a 6-4 win and went 1 for 3, with 1 RBI and 2 runs scored.


MLB Recap

The Beach Boys (3-5) start a 2-game set on Tuesday against the Honolulu Sharks. Games will be 3:00 at Hans L'Orange.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Game 7-Recap

When I went to sleep last night, I expected to wake up and find that Jeremy Bleich had indeed taken the loss for the Waikiki Beach Boys. Bleich lasted only 3.1 innings giving up 3 earned runs on 6 hits. When I "checked out" the Beach Boys were down 5-2 late in the game.

So, I was very surprised to find that the Beach Boys actually came back like teams often do in wacky minor league games. They scored 4 in the top of the ninth to go up 6-5 over the Honu, taking Bleich off the hook for the loss.

The story doesn't end there, as Gameday shows. The Beach Boys ended up losing 7-6.

MLB Recap

Damon Sublett was the DH and started the night with a golden sombrero before finishing 1 for 5.

Rematch at 1:00 p.m today at Hans L'orange.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Game 6-Brackman Rebounds

Andrew Brackman bounced back nicely in his second professional outing, earning the 3-1 win over the North Shore Honu. Andrew gave up just 3 hits in five scoreless innings. The efficient outing on 63 pitches (42 strikes) was particularly impressive, as Brackman struck out 5 of the 18 batters he faced.

Damon Sublett got the Beach Boys on the board with an RBI single in the sixth inning of the then scoreless game. Sublett went 1-for-3 before being lifted for a defensive subsitution in the 7th.

Brackman's final line: 5.0IP 3H 0R BB 5K

Boxscore and Gameday.

The Beach Boys and the Honu go at it again on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. Jeremy Bleich follows Brackman in the rotation.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Game 5-Wallopalooza

Austin Romine picked up his first hit in winter ball, as he and Damon Sublett helped the Beach Boys notch their first win in an 11-2 rout of the previously unbeaten Cane Fires.

The highlight of the game was a busy, six-run second inning in which Romine drew a 1-out walk and scored on Sublett's bases-clearing single. Sublett was credited with 2 RBI as he advanced to second on a throwing error. Sublett scored as the next batter hit a double to make it 6-0. That was just part of the second inning.

The rest of the action and boxscore can be found on Gameday. Sublett finished 2 for 4 with 4 RBI. Romine went 2 for 3, scoring two runs and drawing two walks.

Game tomorrow. Same time, same place, different opponent. The Beach Boys start a new series against the North Shore Honu. Sorry, no radio broadcast or internet stream.

Update: Recap from

Game 4-Sublett Mystery?

The BeachBoys (0-4) are still in search of that elusive first win, as the Canefires came from behind to remain unbeaten.

Good news for Yankee second base prospect Damon Sublett, though, as he got his first hit of the season. After striking out in the first inning, Sublett rapped a lead-off double in the bottom of the fourth. However, he was promptly replaced by a pinch-runner. Not sure what the story was there, but I'll let you know if anything comes out.

Here's the recap.

Rematch today. Same time, same place.


Here's an interesting tidbit. Seems like Sublett's played in Hawaii before as a member of the prominent Wichita State Shockers. It would also appear that Sublett did some closing as well. Here's a recap from the Honolulu Star Bulletin (2/25/05):

Wichita State starter Mike Pelfrey allowed two hits through eight innings to lead the Shockers past Hawaii-Hilo 4-1 yesterday in college baseball at Simmons Field in Kona.

Pelfrey struck out six and gave way to Damon Sublett, who didn't allow a hit in the ninth.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Game 3-Preview

The Waikiki Beachboys look to scratch their first win tonight against the Canefires. Game starts at 7:00 p.m. with audio!

And here's the Gameday link.

No Yankee prospects in the starting lineup.

Since Andrew Brackman's a big part of the Yankee plans for the future, here's an article in the Honolulu Advertiser that may interest you...

Of all Major League teams to take advantage of player development, who would think New York Yankees?

Baseball's most storied franchise, known for spending money for immediate help through free agency, continues to take advantage of Hawaii Winter Baseball to build for the future.

This year's big project is literally that in 6-foot-10, 240-pound right-handed pitcher Andrew Brackman...

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Game 2-Bleich's HWB Debut

Jeremy Bleich took the ball this afternoon for the BeachBoys to bookend Brackman's debut in the season opener last night. Unfortunately, Bleich also took the L as he gave up 2 ER in 2.2IP in the 7-2 loss.

Yankee catching prospect Austin Romine also made his first appearance in Hawaii, catching all 9 frames. Romine went 0-4 with one strikeout and reached base on a fielding error in the third.

Here's the official box score and play by play from

Waikiki's next game will be at Hans L'Orange field as they host the West Oahu Canefires on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m.

Game 1-Brackman Debut

Andrew Brackman had a rough professional debut, but it was a significant step forward after working his way back from TJ surgery. Brackman allowed 7 runs (6 earned) over 2.1 innings and took the loss, as the BeachBoys fell 8-4 to the Sharks.

Gameday has the boxscore and all of the gory details (passed balls, stolen bases, & inherited runners scored).

Here's the recap from

And the write-up from Kyle Galdeira.

Same place, different time. 1:00 p.m. Sunday.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Hawaii Winter Baseball

Aloha & Welcome!

About to embark on a new endeavor here. If you're interested in tagging along, I'll try my best to provide updates on the following Baby Bombers playing winter ball for the Waikiki Beachboys:

Jeremy Bleich #19-LHP
Andrew Brackman #56-RHP
Austin Romine #24-C
Damon Sublett #27-INF
Jeff Ware #17-Hitting Coach

Andrew Brackman is set to make his professional debut in the season opener on Saturday, September 27 at Les Murakami Stadium, 7:00 p.m. HST.

Brackman feature in Baseball America