Goss: No minor feats for Roark, Cingrani
April 11, 2012 8:38PM
Wilmington graduate Tanner Roark, who spent the 2012 season with Washington's Triple-A affiliate at Syracuse, will begin spring training with the parent club as a non-roster invitee. | Supplied photo
Updated: May 13, 2012 8:15AM
His Triple-A debut qualifies as a smashing success.
Tanner Roark, a right-hander from Wilmington who also pitched at the University of Illinois, worked six innings of three-hit, one-run ball to lead the Syracuse Chiefs, the Triple-A team of the Washington Nationals, to a 3-1 victory over the Rochester Red Wings last week.
The Red Wings are the affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, and Roark faced Joliet Catholic graduate Joe Benson. In fact, Benson singled off Roark in the first inning, when the latter also walked two batters and yielded the only run.
Syracuse pitching coach Greg Booker told a Syracuse reporter that Roark “wasn’t using his fastball” in the first inning. “I went out there and told him this is not the same person I fell in love with very quickly during spring training, which was an aggressive-type guy who pounded the strike zone and made hitters beat you instead of you beating yourself,” Booker said.
“I was kind of being fine with everything and not really attacking hitters,” Roark was quoted. “After that I established my fastball and had a lot more success.”
Roark was scheduled to make his second start Wednesday night.
Benson, meanwhile, entered Wednesday’s play 4-for-21 overall, a .190 average. As they say, it is early and if the parent Twins continue to struggle, Benson, who made his major league debut in the Twins’ outfield in September, may be called up sooner rather than later.
Also in Triple A, Ethan Hollingsworth (Plainfield South/Western Michigan) is pitching middle relief for the Omaha Storm Chasers, the affiliate of the Kansas City Royals. The right-hander, who was traded to Oakland from Colorado in January 2011 and then to Kansas City on the final weekend of the 2011 major league season, has made two appearances, working 22/3 innings in the first and three innings in the second, when he allowed a solo home run and picked up a victory. He has allowed six hits, two runs and carries a 3.18 ERA.
Of course, Triple A is not the only minor league level where good things already are happening for our area.
Second baseman Dean Anna (Lincoln-Way East) is playing for San Antonio, the San Diego Padres’ affiliate in the Double-A Texas League. He is hitting .263 (5-for-19).
Left-hander Tony Cingrani from Lincoln-Way Central, a third-round draft pick of the Cincinnati Reds last summer out of Rice University, was impressive enough last year at short-season Billings that the Reds promoted him this year to Bakersfield in the A-Advanced California League.
His debut was excellent as he allowed one hit, a fourth-inning single, and one walk while striking out five in six shutout innings of a 5-2 win over Visalia.
Cingrani’s manager at Bakersfield is Ken Griffey Sr., who told local reporters, “Cingrani did an excellent job for six innings. One hit. You can’t ask for anything better than that.”
Last season with Billings, Cingrani was 3-2 with a 1.75 ERA and an amazing 80 strikeouts in 511/3 innings. Pioneer League opponents hit .190 against him and he allowed only six walks.
Ryan Quigley, of Joliet Catholic and most recently the Joliet Slammers, also is pitching in the California League, which generally is considered a hitters’ league. The right-hander has made two appearances for the San Diego’s affiliate at Lake Elsinore and has pitched three shutout innings, allowing three hits and one walk while striking out three.
On the Class A level, former Joliet Catholic outfielder John Ruettiger has been stinging the ball for Delmarva, a Baltimore Orioles affiliate in the South Atlantic League. He is hitting .348 (8-for-23) with one double and two RBI. He also boasts a .483 on-base percentage and four stolen four in five attempts.
Right-hander Mike Foltynewicz (1-1, 2.08 ERA) is pitching for Lexington, Houston’s affiliate in the same South Atlantic League. After a rough first outing, the Minooka product threw six shutout innings Wednesday, allowing three hits and two walks while striking out eight, in a 3-0 win over Hagerstown.
Anyone interested in talking local baseball should plan to attend the quarterly meeting of the Old Timers Baseball Association of Will County at 7 p.m. Monday at the Joliet Moose.
Congratulations to Ryan Sharp, of Basil Drive in Lockport, winner of the Herald-News Budget Golf Inaugural Golf Contest based on how his chosen team of golfers performed in the Masters.
The Johnsburg School District Board of Education this week officially approved former Joliet Central football coach Mike Maloney as the new Johnsburg coach. His replacement at Central has not been named.
Joliet Junior College guard Cory Proctor was selected an NJCAA Division III second-team All-American. The sophomore averaged 15.8 points and 3.1 assists. He is the 13th All-American at JJC during coach Joe Kuhn’s tenure.