Between traveling to Denver for the Futures Game, and off day on Monday and a rainout on Tuesday, Yoelqui Céspedes went nearly a week between playing full, standard baseball games. That pales in comparison to the seven-week delay to start his season, but he looked like he couldn’t wait to swing the bat again during the doubleheader against Bowling Green.
Céspedes swung at 16 of the 26 pitches over the course of an 0-for-6 night, during which he struck out twice. He wants to make things happen, which can be said about the Winston-Salem lineup as a whole. The Dash have the High-A East’s lowest walk rate, which isn’t a good combination with a Bowling Green staff that is the stingiest at issuing them. The Dash didn’t draw a walk in the doubleheader until they were down to their last out of Game 2.
But Céspedes at least showed a willingness to shrink his zone as the night proceeded. He saved his best two at-bats for last, taking twice in each of the four-pitch battles. Because the Hot Rods don’t walk anybody, he still fell behind 1-2 each time, but he came through with a couple of line drives.
The first should’ve been a base hit, as Céspedes kept the hands back long enough to flip a breaking ball into left field, but Lazaro Leal was thrown at third for the first of two occasions in the game.
In his final trip, he laid off two sliders, the second of which caught the zone for a 1-2 count. He still got the fastball he anticipated, and lined out hard to right.
Céspedes has three walks against 29 strikeouts over 85 plate appearances this season, so tamping down his aggression until it takes a more constructive form is going to be his primary objective. I also wonder if being confined to a DH because of a shoulder issue to start the season is hampering him a little, whether due to physical limitations or having no other way to contribute to a game. Either way, it seems like any attempt to establish an MLB ETA is purely speculative until he gets at least a solid month of swinging out of his system.
- Eloy JIménez played left the whole game and went 1-for-4 with a strikeout.
- Yermín Mercedes went 1-for-4 with a double.
- Luis González was 0-for-3 with a walk.
- Ti’Quan Forbes singled and struck out twice.
- Romy Gonzalez went 2-for-5 with a double.
- Carlos Pérez had an Arby’s night: 5-for-5, all singles. He also stole a base.
- Micker Adoflo was 2-for-5, both doubles. He struck out once.
- Kade McClure: 4 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K
Bowling Green 5, Winston-Salem 1 (Game 1, 7 innings)
- Yoelqui Céspedes and Lenyn Sosa both were 0-for-3 with a K.
- Yolbert Sanchez was 2-for-3, and was caught stealing on a busted hit-and-run.
Bowling Green 2, Winston-Salem 1 (Game 2, 7 innings)
- Yoelqui Céspedes went 0-for-3 with a K.
- Lenyn Sosa was 0-for-3.
- Yolbert Sanchez flied out in a pinch-hitting appearance.
- Jose Rodriguez went 1-for-5 with a double and a K.
- Bryan Ramos was 1-for-4 with a double, walk and K.
- Luis Mieses and Harvin Mendoza keep doing the same thing: 1-for-3 with a double, two walks and a K.
- Chase Krogman had the same line, but his hit was a homer.
- DJ Gladney, 1-for-5 with three strikeouts.
- Caberea Weaver tripled, walked and struck out twice.
- Matthew Thompson returned to A-ball: 3 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 3 K.