Friday saw the Bridgeport Bluefish debut of Dontrelle Willis and, unfortunately, the start of a series loss to the Somerset Patriots. Somerset took the first three games of the set; they outscored the Bluefish 14-3 across the three Patriot wins. Bluefish starters kept their team in the game—never giving up more than 3 or 4 runs before the 6th inning. However, the Bridgeport bats never caught enough of spark to overcome the deficits.
They must have been saving that spark for Sunday when the lineup was able to create a win for starter Hunter Jones after he gave up 5 earned runs to the Patriots. Bridgeport’s 11 hits were enough to maintain the lead even as closer Winston Abreu gave up a run in the 9th inning before getting the save.
Despite losing the series, the Bluefish (7-5) are still the Liberty leaders of the second half. In second place are the Somerset Patriots by half a game. Today’s win started a 3 game series vs the Long Island Ducks, the team currently in last place.
This weekend also brought Casper Wells‘ Atlantic League and Bluefish debut. The outfielder was in affiliated ball through 2013, including over 275 games in the major leagues with 5 different teams. Since his first start in LF on Saturday, he has started there in the next 3, including this morning against the Ducks. His triple-A numbers could not have predicted the phenomenal start he has had. He has gone 8 for 15 with 2 RBI, 2 BB, and only 1 SO in the 4 games. At this rate, he could be a permanent replacement for Denny Almonte and his .208 BA. Almonte was the only option as 1 of only 3 Bluefish outfielders left after Brandon Boggs was picked up by a major league affiliated organization.
The Week Ahead
After Bridgeport’s three game series in Long Island, they will head to Lancaster to play two games against the Barnstormers. After one day off, they head back home Sunday, July 27th, for a doubleheader vs. the LI Ducks. Norwalk, CT, native Matt Iannazzo is due to start tomorrow, although that is not confirmed. The decision has not been made as to who will stay in the regular rotation and who will be pushed to the pen. However, after the doubleheader on Saturday and one coming up on Sunday, it looks like they can use six starters for now.