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Jared Kelley isn’t having the season anybody wanted for him, and now we’ll have to see how much of a season he has left.
During the Cannon Ballers’ game against Down East on Sunday, the Kannapolis staff came out to visit Kelley after one batter and removed him after two. He showed no signs of visible discomfort from the stream, wasting little time between pitches, and FutureSox’s Michael Guariglia didn’t see anything besides facial expressions that wouldn’t have drawn concern. He walked the first batter on six pitches with his four misses well arm-side, but that’s not necessarily out of the norm.
But once Kanny broadcaster Trevor Wilt said Kelley’s fastball was sitting at 91, that’s all you needed to know. Kelley lobbied to stay in for a second batter and induced a groundout to short, but he wasn’t allowed to face anybody else.
The extra insult is that the leadoff walk came around to score and Kannapolis never tied the game after, so he took the loss to drop to 0-5 on the season, and 0-7 when factoring in two rehab starts in Arizona. He has the unenviable combination of more runs (23) and walks (22) than innings pitched (21) with Kannapolis this year, so suffice it to say that this isn’t the pro debut anybody envisioned for the 2020 second-round pick.
- Billy Hamilton went 1-for-3 with a walk, strikeout and stolen base.
- Yasmani Grandal caught all nine innings, going 0-for-3 with two walks and a strikeout.
- Jake Burger went 2-for-5 with a homer and two strikeouts.
- Gavin Sheets was 1-for-4 with a walk and two strikeouts.
- Blake Rutherford, 1-for-4 with a strikeout.
- Romy Gonzalez has mastered Triple-A: 4-for-5 with three doubles .
Birmingham 4, Tennessee 3 (Game 1, 8 innings)
- Yoelqui Céspedes went 2-for-4, and was picked off/caught stealing.
- Yolbert Sanchez went 1-for-4 with a K.
- Carlos Pérez went 1-for-4.
- Lenyn Sosa, 0-for-4 with a K.
- Jason Bilous: 4.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 7 K
Tennessee 7, Birmingham 1 (Game 2, 7 innings)
- Yoelqui Céspedes went 1-for-4 with a double, two strikeouts and a stolen base.
- Yolbert Sanchez was 2-for-3.
- Carlos Pérez, 0-for-3 with a strikeout.
- Caberea Weaver singled and struck out four times.
- Jose Rodriguez went 2-for-5 with a strikeout.
- Luis Curbelo, 2-for-4 with his 19th homer, a walk and a strikeout.
- Luis Mieses went 1-for-5 with a K.
- James Beard walked once, struck out thrice and was caught stealing.
- Shawn Goosenberg went 2-for-3 with a stolen base.
- Harvin Mendoza went 2-for-4.
- Misael Gonzalez went 0-for-3 with a walk.
- DJ Gladney, 1-for-3 with a walk and a strikeout.
- Jared Kelley: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
(Photo by Kannapolis Cannon Ballers on Facebook)