Friday, September 4, 2009

August Prince and Darvish updates

Josh Prince has not had an easy time of it since being promoted to Wisconsin but he's had flashes of success. He is still walking at a pretty good clip but has gone six straight games without a stolen base, the longest stretch of his brief pro career. He did his first professional home run against Burlington on August 24th and continues to play well in the field. It is not uncommon to take some time to adjust after a promotion and I expect he'll come around in the latter parts of the season. Despite not having played there in several weeks, Josh is still the Pioneer League leader in stolen bases. Brian Ruggiano of the Ogden Raptors needs four steals in the final eight games to tie Prince.

Yu Darvish had his struggles in August as well. Here's the game by game look.

Darvish loses to Rakuten 3-1 despite 12 strikeouts and just five hits because of five walks allowed.

153 IP, 95 H, 36 BB, 144 K, 13-4, 1.41 ERA

The following week he posts almost the same exact stats, 12 K's, 5 H in 8 IP. With just one walk, though, he holds Seibu to two runs and gets the victory.

161 IP, 100 H, 37 BB, 156 K, 14-4, 1.45 ERA

Darvish gets crushed by the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks as third baseman Jose Ortiz goes deep off of Darvish twice. Darvish throws the complete game, however.

169 IP, 110 H, 38 BB, 161 K, 14-5, 1.70 ERA

You have to love Japanese baseball. Darvish leads the league in ERA and victories and is second in strikeouts. Without question he is the best pitcher in the league. So what do the Fighters do? They have Darvish skip his next start so that he can go to their practice facility and work on his form.

Of course, it may have been to protect him, too. Five members of the Fighters had contracted swine flu so depending on the location of the practice facility, they may also have been trying to keep him healthy.

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