Power outage in West Virginia
I’m here in Charleston, West Virginia, for the opening game of the South Atlantic League playoffs between the Lake County Captains and the West Virginia Power. the Captains (Indians organization) won the first half title of the Northern Division, while West Virginia taking the second-half crown.
Things didn’t start off so well for the home team as the Captains jumped out to a 7-0 lead through five as West Virginia’s pitchers had a wee bit of trouble finding the strike zone … or finding too much of it. Things looked bleak, even for Toastman. A great moment: Lake County’s No. 9 hitter, Juan Valdes, awaits on deck for his turn at-bat. For those of you not familiar, Toastman sits near the visiting on-deck circle and basically ridees that player mercilessly. Valdes’ particular crime was that this was his third tour in the South Atlantic League and he was reminded just how well Toastman knew him. Valdes responded by hitting a three-run homer in the third inning. After he crossed home plate, he pointed right at Toastman, which, to his credit, drew a smile from the Power’s biggest fan.
To the Power’s credit, they didn’t give up. Lake County starter Joey Mahalic came out after five shutout innings and West Virginia jumped all over the Captains bullpen for four runs in the sixth. Still a long way to go with the way this thing is going, but at least we have a ballgame now…
By the way, we’re all over the playoffs for the next couple of weeks. Kevin Czerwinski’s covering the IL’s Pawtucket-Scranton series and he’s been blogging about it. And Lisa Winston will be checking out some Florida State Leauge action this weekend and then on to the Texas League. So be sure to check out got milb? for her thoughts when the time comes.
Of course, we’ll have lots of stories and multimedia on MiLB.com as well. Already, Kevin C’s written a story on Pawtucket starter Adam Mills and I’ve contributed a feature on Lake County reliever Rob Bryson, who went from the Brewers organization to the Indians, and thus from West Virginia to Lake County, in the C.C. Sabathia trade. This is his first trip back to Appalachian Power Park since the trade.