Revs return home hot for Freedom Division showdown
What a difference a week can make. Way back on July 18, Revs’ skipper Andy Etchebarren expressed his concern about York’s starting rotation and how it needed to improve should the Revs have a shot at the postseason. At the time, York was sitting at a league worst 1-5 in the second half.
In response, the Revs made a bunch of moves last week. And so far, those new acquisitions are making York’s coaching staff and those in the front office look pretty good, as the Revs have won five of their last seven contests.
Newly acquired lefty Derrick Gordon has allowed just two earned runs in 13 total innings over his two starts in a Revs’ uniform, an ERA good for 1.39. It’s a step up from his 6.44 ERA he had for Sugar Land earlier this season. And it appears he’s returned to his 2011 form, when he had a 2.63 ERA in 11 starts for the Somerset Patriots.
In two games (through Wednesday), infielder Joe Thurston is hitting .333 (3-for-9) with two runs scored. Catcher Salomon Manriquez is just 1-for-12 in three games thus far, but he did catch both games on Tuesday and Wednesday, when Revs’ pitchers combined to allow just one run in each game to get two Ws.
Lefty Victor Garate is really the only one of the new acquisitions who hasn’t performed well. In his only appearance for York thus far, Garate surrendered two runs – one earned on four hits in 1.2 innings against Bridgeport on July 23.
Pitching: The starting pitching has made quite a turnaround recently. Following Gordon’s eight-inning one-run performance on Tuesday, Corey Thurman looked good on Wednesady at Bridgeport. The veteran right-hander worked out of bases-loaded trouble in the first inning, and stranded six runners over the first three innings. From there, he was nearly unhittable, retiring 14 of the final 15 batters he faced, and allowing just four hits all afternoon. (CHECK OUT THE FULL GAME STORY HERE) His nine wins tie him for the most victories in the league. Thurman (9-2) now has 47 wins in a Revs’ uniform, third-most in Atlantic League history.
All five of York’s starters have combined for a 2.79 ERA in the last five games (through Wednesday), having surrendered a total of nine earned runs over 29 innings (they’ve also given up 29 total hits during that stretch).
Lancaster coming to town: The Revs (42-41 overall, 6-7 second half) finished the trip with a 4-2 record, and have won five of their last seven overall. With the Lancaster Barnstormers (52-30, 7-5) losing on Wednesday, York moved to within 1.5 games of Lancaster for first place in the Atlantic League Freedom Division second-half race.
That sets up nicely for this week’s showdown with Lancaster, which begins on Thursday in the first of a four-game set. The Barnstormers (52-30, 7-5) started out the second half with a 4-1 mark before going 3-4 in their last seven games. They enter Thursday after dropping two of three at Camden. Those three games kicked off a nine-game road trip for the Barnies.
After York went 6-4 against Lancaster in the first half of the season, the Barnies opened up the second half by sweeping the Revs in a three-game set by a combined score of 15-4.
But some things have changed for Lancaster since then. In the last couple weeks, the Barnies have seen infielders Jaime Pedroza and Terry Tiffee get picked up by the Atlanta Braves and lefty reliever Les Walrond get signed by the Toronto Blue Jays.
Lancaster is averaging 3.8 runs a game in its 12 games thus far, while York is at 4.3 a clip in 13 contests. Like it was in the first half of the season, Lancaster pitching has stayed hot in the second half, holding opponents to just 3.8 runs a game in 12 contests. York is giving up 5.1 runs a game in 13 contests.
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