The Eastern League announced today that Harrisburg Senators’ OF Yadiel Hernandez has been named the Eastern League Player of the Week for the week of August 28th through September 4th. The Senators slugger is the second Harrisburg player to win player of the week honors this season.
The 29-year-old led the Eastern League with a .480 (12-for-25) batting average, .594 on-base percentage, and 840 slugging percentage in eight games last week, along with two home runs, three doubles, five RBIs, five runs scored, two stolen bases, and seven walks. The Matanzas, Cuba native reached base at least once in all eight games and had at least one hit in seven of the eight games. Hernandez’s stellar week was highlighted by a walk-off home run on August 30 against Akron to complete a five-run comeback for the Senators.
Yadiel, who hit .292 (116-for-397) with 12 home runs and an .819 OPS in 120 games while making his Minor League Baseball debut with the Senators this season, was signed by the Washington Nationals as a non-drafted free agent on October 1, 2016. He finished third in the Eastern League with a .379 on-base percentage and ninth in the league in batting average.
The Senators play the final game of the season Monday afternoon against the Altoona Curve at PNG Field. The Senators split the pair of games they played Sunday, winning the completion of Saturday’s suspended game 4-3 while dropping Sunday scheduled game 6-0. The Curve hold a 10-6 edge in the season series.
52 PICK UP
The Senators finish their 31st season of baseball on Monday afternoon. Overall 52 players played for the club in 2017, four of which made the Major Leagues (Adrian Sanchez, Erick Fedde, Andrew Stevenson, and Raudy Read) and four joined the team on rehab assignments (Koda Glover, Joe Blanton, Chris Heisey, and Michael A. Taylor). The Senators also had four Eastern League Mid-Season All-Stars (Jose Marmolejos, Raudy Read, John Simms, Ryan Brinley) and one Eastern League player of the week award winner (Jose Marmolejos, August 21-27).
SENATORS STARTING PITCHER
Taylor Hill starts the final game of the year for the Senators. The right-hander is 4-6 with a 5.33 ERA across 17 games and 16 starts with the Senators this season. Hill struck out a career-high nine in a quality start his last time out on August 30 against Akron. For more information on Hill, please visit the starting pitcher page on page two of the game notes.
ALTOONA STARTING PITCHER
The Curve send JT Brubaker to the mound opposite Hill. The right-hander is 7-6 with a 4.51 ERA across 25 games and 23 starts with the Senators this season. Brubaker is 1-1 with a 2.76 ERA in three starts covering 16.1 innings against the Senators this season. The 23-year-old was originally drafted by the Pirates in the sixth round of the 2015 draft from Belmont.
The Senators and Curve play a doubleheader Sunday afternoon at PNG Field. Saturday’s game was suspended in the sixth inning due to inclement weather with game tied 1-1. The suspended game will be completed to a full nine-inning contest and will be followed by a seven-inning contest beginning approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of game one. Altoona holds a 9-5 edge in the season series.
SENATORS HITTING STREAKS
Victor Robles had his 18 game hitting streak snapped after he was removed from Saturday’s game following his groundout in the first. The streak was the longest Senators hitting streak of the season. It is also tied for the fifth longest streak in Senators history (Lance Belen in 1987, Josh Labandeira in 2004) and it’s tied for the longest in the Eastern League this season. Robles hit .397 during the 18 games. Jose Marmolejos is also looking to extend a 16-game hitting streak.
Austin Voth starts game two of the doubleheader series for the Senators. The right-hander is 3-3 with a 4.84 ERA across nine starts with the Senators this season. Voth allowed five runs in three and two-thirds innings in his last against on August 29 against Akron. For more information on Voth, please visit the starting pitcher page on page two of the game notes.
The Curve counter with starter Austin Coley. The right-hander is 5-4 with a 3.16 ERA over 22 starts with Altoona this season. Coley is 0-1 with a 4.85 ERA in three starts against the Senators this year, and tossed a quality start in his last appearance against the club on July 19. The 24-year-old was originally drafted by the Pirates from Belmont in the 2014 draft.
The Senators play their final series of the season as they take on the Altoona Curve in a four-game set at PNG Field. The Senators dropped the series opener 6-5 as they could not finish the comeback after falling behind 5-0 after six innings. This is the first meeting between the two teams since the Curve took two out of three from the club July 17-19. Altoona holds an 9-5 edge in the season series.
SAME AS IT EVER WAS
The Senators have played three consecutive games that have finished with a final score of 6-5. In each game, the Senators have trailed by at least four runs entering either the seventh of eighth innings. The club came back to win Saturday’s game on a walk-off home run by Yadiel Hernandez, the club’s Eastern League high sixth win when trailing entering the ninth inning. The club has come up one run short in each of the previous two games.
RAUDY GETS THE CALL
Raudy Read was promoted to the Nationals on Monday, becoming the fourth 2017 Senator to be called up the Major Leagues (Andrew Stevenson, Erick Fedde and Adrian Sanchez). The catcher played 108 games with the Senators and led the club with 17 home runs, the most by a Senators player since 2014. Taylor Gushue was promoted to the Senators from Potomac to fill Read’s roster spot.
SENATORS HITTING STREAKS
After his pinch-hit single, Victor Robles has now recorded a hit in 18 consecutive games, the longest Senators hitting streak of the season. The streak is tied for the fifth longest streak in Senators history (Lance Belen in 1987, Josh Labandeira in 2004) and it’s tied for the longest in the Eastern League this season. Robles is batting .397 during the 18 games. Jose Marmolejos also extended his hitting streak to 16 after finishing 2-2.
Kyle McGowin starts game two for the Senators. The right-hander is 1-5 with a 7.17 ERA across eight starts with the Senators this season. McGowin went a season-high seven innings in his last start, while only allowing one run on six hits. For more information on McGowin please visit game two of the game notes.
The Curve counter with starter Alex McRae. The right-hander is 10-5 with a 3.67 ERA across 26 games and 24 starts with the Curve this season. McRae tossed six innings of one run ball against Richmond in his last start on August 28. The 24-year-old was originally drafted by the Pirates in the 10th round of the 2014 draft from Jacksonville University.
The Senators play their final series of the season as they take on the Altoona Curve in a four-game set beginning Friday night at PNG Field. The Senators wrapped up their home schedule by splitting a four game series with Akron, while the Curve have clinched a spot in the Eastern League playoffs. This is the first meeting between the two teams since the Curve took two out of three from the club July 17-19. Altoona holds an 8-5 edge in the season series.
Brady Dragmire makes his final start of the year in the series opener against Akron. The right-hander 4-1 with a 2.93 ERA across 17 games and five starts with the Senators this season. Dragmire allowed four runs, three earned, across five and two-thirds innings in his last start against Reading on August 25. For more information on Dragmire, please visit page two.
The Curve counter with starter Mitch Keller. The right-hander is 1-2 with a 3.77 ERA across five starts with the Curve this season. Keller began the season with high-A Bradenton before being promoted to Altoona on August 4. The 21-year-old is the second best prospect in the Pirates organization and the #22 prospect in MiLB according to MLB.com
In their final home game of the 2017 season, the Harrisburg Senators came up short in their comeback bid losing 6-5 to the Akron RubberDucks at FNB Field.
The eighth inning was one many players and coaches will wish to forget in the coming off-season. Harrisburg starter Greg Ross, who had been in control most of the night, failed to record an out while loading the bases. That was enough for manager Matt LeCroy to summon Andrew Robinson from the bullpen. The 29-year-old reliever surrendered the tying run on a fielder’s choice, re-loaded the bases on a walk, and then allowed back to back doubles which plated four more runs to give Akron a 6-2 advantage.
But the never say die Senators responded in the bottom half of the inning with a rally of their own. Corban Joseph and Jose Marmolejos led off the frame with a pair of singles. Raudy Read followed with a drive of his own that couldn’t be corralled in deep center field to plate Joseph. Dan Gamache followed with a groundball to Akron first baseman Bobby Bradley who touched first and threw to second for the 3-6 double play. But Akron shortstop Yu-Cheng Chang was too quick on the catch and tag as the ball deflected off his glove into center field allowing Marmolejos to score and advance Read to third. Harrisburg scored their fifth run of the game on a Drew Ward RBI groundout to bring them within a run. That was as close as the Senators would get as their last four batters were retired in order.
After sitting out the last two games when he was beaned on the right knee on a sacrifice bunt attempt, Victor Robles wasted little time showing he was healthy in his first start since. The 20-year-old outfielder lined a single to left to lead off the home half of the first and then stole second base, his ninth in 33 games with the Senators, without even a throw from Akron catcher Juan De La Cruz. Two batters later Robles coasted home on a Marmolejos sacrifice fly.
Robles’ hit extended his hitting streak to 17 games, the longest string by a Senator since Jesus Feliciano in 2005. Marmolejos, the reigning Player of the Week in the Eastern League, waited until the eighth inning to get a hit giving him 15 straight games as well.
Ward struck out twice in four at-bats to bring his season total to 130 tying him for fourth on the Senators’ all-time single-season list with Michael Taylor… Ross struck out a career-high nine over his seven innings of work… Yadiel Hernandez smacked his 12th home run of the season in his first at-bat to give Harrisburg an early 2-0 lead.
The Senators play their final game at FNB Field in 2017 in the series finale against the Akron RubberDucks on Thursday night. The Senators won game three of the series in thrilling fashion, scoring six runs over the final two innings to overcome a five-run deficit, capped by a walk-off home run by Yadiel Hernandez. The Senators look to take three out four from Akron in game four of the series, which would also give them the season series win which is currently tied at six wins each. The Senators have just five games remaining in 2017, as they finish the season with four games against Altoona.
Wednesday’s win was the Senators sixth when trailing entering the ninth inning, the most such victories in the Eastern League. Yadiel Hernandez hit the Senators first walk-off home run since Stephen Perez hit one on July 26, 2016 against New Hampshire.
If the Senators win the final game against Akron then they will finish with their first winning month of the season. With another 10 hits Wednesday, the Senators raised their team batting average in the month .282, the highest mark in the Eastern League. In addition, the Senators’ 30 home runs are the most they have hit in a month this season and is fourth most in the Eastern League in August.
Greg Ross makes his final start of the season in the series finale against Akron. The righthander is 5-3 with a 6.26 ERA across nine starts this season. Ross allowed just one run over six innings in his last start against Reading on August 26. For more information on Ross, please visit the starting pitcher page on game two of the game notes.
The ‘Ducks counter with starter Matt Esparza. The right-hander is 5-5 with a 5.08 ERA across 16 starts with Akron this season. Esparza is 1-1 with a 5.67 ERA in two starts against the Senators this season. The 23-year-old was originally drafted in the 14th round of the 2015 draft out of UC Irvine.
Yadiel Hernandez’s opposite field home run capped the Senators’ improbable, come-from-behind 6-5 walk-off win on Wednesday night at FNB Field. Unable to generate almost anything off Akron starter Shane Bieber, the Harrisburg offense came alive when it got into the RubberDucks’ bullpen for the stunning victory.
“I’m proud of the guys,” manager Matt LeCroy said. “They could have easily folded, but they came into the last two innings and put some good at-bats together.”
Bieber, the Indians’ 21st ranked prospect per Baseball America, stifled the Senators for seven shutout innings allowing four singles and a walk while striking out eight. Harrisburg advanced only one baserunner to second base during Bieber’s time on the mound.
Down 5-0 into the eighth inning, the Senators scored three runs off Akron reliever David Speer. Khayyan Norfork started the rally with a leadoff walk and moved up 90 feet on Corban Joseph’s single. Jose Marmolejos followed with a double into the right-center field gap to score Norfork. The Senators notched two more tallies on a Dan Gamache RBI groundout and a Drew Ward single to narrow the gap to 5-3.
After reliever Derek Self set down the Ducks in a 1-2-3 inning, Norfork reached base on a fielding error to lead off the ninth. Joseph, representing the tying run, followed with another single to put runners on first and second. But then a chain of events seemed to turn the momentum back to the Ducks as Marmolejos struck out and then Joseph was caught stealing on the back end of a double steal. Gamache kept the rally alive and brought the Senators within a run with a single to left field before Hernandez delivered the game-winning line drive on the first pitch he saw.
Harrisburg starter Taylor Hill notched a quality start with seven solid innings. The right-hander yielded two runs on seven hits, one walk, and two hit by pitches while striking out a career-high nine batters.
Akron threatened to bust the game wide open in the seventh inning as they loaded the bases off Hill without recording an out. But the 28-year-old kept the Senators within striking distance as he limited the damage to one run allowing a sacrifice fly sandwiched in between by a pair of strikeouts.
“He made some big pitches there with the bases loaded and no outs,” LeCroy said. “He said he was fine. I hollered from the dugout to see if he was okay.”
However, the RubberDucks kept swinging the lumber against Harrisburg reliever Kyle Schepel in the next frame loading the bases once again. This time Tyler Krieger delivered the big blow, a bases clearing double, to push the Akron lead to 5-0.
Hernandez’s home run, his 11th of the season, marked a career-high for the 29-year-old Cuban…the home run hit by Luigi Rodriguez in the third inning was the 27th long ball Hill has given up this season which ties him for the most allowed in all of minor league baseball…with Indians’ #1 prospect Francisco Mejia starting his first game of his career at third base, the Senators attempted to bunt for base hits three separate times in the game.
The Senators and RubberDucks play game three of the Senators’ final home series of the 2017 season. The ’Ducks evened the series with their game two 10-9 win following Taylor Murphy’s go-ahead two-run home run with the club down to their final out in the ninth. Akron leads the season series 6-5. The Senators have just six games remaining in 2017, as they finish the season with four games against Altoona.
If the Senators win the final two games against Akron then they will finish with their first winning month of the season. With another 11 hits Tuesday night, the Senators raised their team batting average in the month .282, the highest mark in the Eastern League. In addition the Senators’ 29 home runs are the most they have hit in a month this season and is third most in the Eastern League in August.
Taylor Hill starts game three of the series for the Senators. The right-hander is 4-6 with a 5.54 ERA across 16 games and 15 starts this season with the Senators. Hill has thrown three consecutive quality starts. For more information on Hill please visit page two of the game notes.
The ‘Ducks counter with starter Shane Bieber. The right-hander 2-1 with a 2.83 ERA across seven starts with Akron this season. Bieber is pitching at his third level in the Cleveland organization this season, after starting the year with low-A Lake County and high-A Lynchburg. Bieber was Cleveland’s fourth round draft pick in 2016.
The Harrisburg Senators today released their 2018 home schedule, which includes 70 dates beginning with their home opener on Friday, April 13 against the Bowie Baysox. The Senators begin the 2018 season on the road at Bowie on April 6.
Once again, this season the Senators will play their Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday night games at 6:30 p.m., Thursday and Friday nights at 7:00 p.m., Saturday nights at 6:00 p.m. and most Sunday games at 1:30 p.m.
The 2018 schedule has two 10:30 a.m. home games, Wednesday, May 2 against Hartford and Thursday, May 24 against Erie. There are also five noon weekday games. They are Thursday, April 19 vs. Reading; Monday, May 28 vs. Altoona; Thursday, June 7 vs. Binghamton; Wednesday, June 20 vs. Bowie; and Wednesday, July 18 vs. Akron.
The schedule also includes four odd Sunday game times. They are May 27 at 6:30 p.m. vs. Altoona; June 3 at 3:30 p.m. vs. Portland; July 1 at 6:00 p.m. vs. Richmond; and July 29 at 6:00 p.m. vs. Bowie.
The Senators have 11 home Friday, Saturday and Sunday games, and are home on Memorial Day. They’ll play 10 home games on Thursday and 27 Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday home games.
Senators fans will see Altoona, Bowie and Hartford the most, with 10 games each against those three teams. Binghamton, Trenton, New Hampshire and Portland all only make one visit to FNB Field.
The 2018 Senators’ Home Schedule:
April 13-15 Bowie Baysox (Orioles)
April 16-19 Reading Fightin Phils (Phillies)
April 27-29 Altoona Curve (Pirates)
April 30-May 2 Hartford Yard Goats (Rockies)
May 10-13 New Hampshire Fisher Cats (Blue Jays)
May 22-24 Erie SeaWolves (Tigers)
May 25-28 Altoona Curve (Pirates)
June 1-3 Portland Sea Dogs (Red Sox)
June 5-7 Binghamton Rumble Ponies (Mets)
June 15-17 Richmond Flying Squirrels (Giants)
June 19-21 Bowie Baysox (Orioles)
June 29-July 3 Richmond Flying Squirrels (Giants)
July 12-15 Hartford Yard Goats (Rockies)
July 16-18 Akron RubberDucks (Indians)
July 26-30 Bowie Baysox (Orioles)
July 31-August 2 Altoona Curve (Pirates)
August 7-9 Hartford Yard Goats (Rockies)
August 10-12 Trenton Thunder (Yankees)
August 17-19 Akron RubberDucks (Indians)
August 20-21 Reading Fightin Phils (Phillies)
August 27-30 Erie SeaWolves (Tigers)
The Senators box office is open today and Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to the end of the game. Tickets are available via telephone during the same hours as the box office hours. Tickets are also available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, online at www.senatorsbaseball.com. You can find the Senators on Facebook at facebook.com/senatorsbaseball or @hbgsenators on Twitter.