I added new starts for the teams who play a first and second half in order to reach the playoffs.

Louisville Bats: 48-40 overall, 417 runs scored, 385 runs allowed.

The Bats still find themselves in second place behind the Columbus Clippers. They are a half a game back in the wildcard standings thanks to a recent losing streak.  This afternoon Zack Cozart was called up to the Reds, taking away a core part of their offense. The offense has been slumping some of late. Jeremy Hermida has a .603 OPS in his last 10 games, Dave Sappelt has a .677 in his last 10 games, Devin Mesoraco has a .615 in his last 10 games and Todd Frazier has a .742 OPS in his last 10 games. I would expect them to break out of it here soon, as these guys are just far too talented to continue hitting like that. On the mound they have gotten three good starts out of Travis Wood since he was sent back to the Bats. Scott Carroll continues to be a solid innings eater. Chad Reineke has also been about as solid as you can be in the rotation. Daryl Thompson can be inconsistent at times, but in 33 innings with the Bats he has a 3.00 ERA with a 33/8 strikeout to walk ratio. Brad Boxberger got a promotion to the Bats and has yet to allow a run in 4.2 innings with just 1 hit and 2 walks to go with 5 strikeouts.

Carolina Mudcats: 28-55 overall/5-9 in the second half. 72 runs scored, 74 runs allowed.

The Mudcats have gotten a boost offensively from several call-ups from Bakersfield in the past few weeks. Henry Rodriguez, Yasmani Grandal and Eric Campbell have all found themselves in Zebulon. Grandal has hit .325/.341/.550 in 11 games since being called up. Henry Rodriguez has tailed off slightly since starting off hot, but is still hitting .270. Campebll is hitting just .247 but has shown good power in limited playing time off the bench, though he may get more time now that Mike Costanzo was promoted to AAA to play for an injured Juan Francisco. Denis Phipps has been hotter than the sun over the last 4 weeks. He hit .418/.458/653 in June and is hitting even better so far in July. His line has gone to .304/.365/.462 on the season. Neftali Soto has also been very hot lately, hitting .350/.409/.850 over his last 10 games. The pitching staff still remains a big question for the Mudcats, especially after losing their bullpen hammer to a promotion. The best ERA on the staff with at least 30 innings is now 4.30 from Matt Klinker.

Bakersfield Blaze: 40-44 overall/5-9 in the second half. 58 runs scored, 74 runs allowed.

The Blaze have gotten off to a slow start in the second half, losing two blow outs that really put their RS/RA numbers out of whack. The departure of several key offensive players has put a strain on the offense. Stephen Hunt is the only remaining regular who has an OPS over .800. On the pitching side of things the Blaze continue to get inconsistent starts from the starters. Josh Ravin and JC Sulbaran have each had numerous dominant games as well as games where they have been shelled. The bullpen has Clayton Shunick with a 1.74 ERA, but only Tim Crabbe has an ERA under 4.00 besides him.

Dayton Dragons: 45-38 overall/10-3 in the second half. 73 runs scored, 50 runs allowed.

The Dragons have started off the second half of the season on a tear. They have won 6 games in a row coming into tonight’s contest. Ronald Torreyes has been a boost for the Dragons since he has come up, hitting .381/.418/.524 over his first 15 games and providing run producing opportunities that the middle of the order hasn’t been getting much of before that. Juan Duran has been on a bit of a tear in the second half so far, hitting .364/.389/.727 over his last 10 games. Yorman Rodriguez had been coming around with the bat as well, hitting .300 and slugging .525 in his last 10 games, but has not played in 4 games due to injury. The pitching staff remains lights out. As a team they have a 3.43 ERA on the season and they have 782 strikeouts in 710.2 innings. That is flat out incredible.

Billings Mustangs: 10-7 overall, 112 runs scored, 86 runs allowed.

The Mustangs are off to a strong start, leading their division by a game with just over two weeks of play under their belts. Dayne Read is hitting .400/.450/.745 early on in the season with a team leading 4 HR’s and 18 RBI. Kurtis Muller is hitting .354/.492/.563 out of the leadoff spot and has scored 16 times. Drew Poulk joins them in the 1.000 or better OPS club with a .368/.429/.579 line on the season. Nick O’Shea is hitting .308/.357/.615 early on through 10 games. Sean Buckley and Devin Lohman both have OPS’s over the .800 mark as well. On the pitching side of things the Mustangs got two strong starts from Stalin Gerson (1 ER in 12 innings) before he got promoted to Dayton. Tony Cingrani, the Reds 3rd round pick this season, has 8 strikeouts in 4 shutout innings so far. Six other pitchers have ERA’s between 1.00 and 3.00. The Mustangs 3.78 ERA ranks second in the league (third place is at 4.40). The team’s 10.5 strikeouts per 9 innings leads the league.

AZL Reds: 7-7 overall, 94 runs scored, 74 runs allowed.

Brandon Dailey has been the cornerstone of the Reds offense so far with a .450/.515/.667 line through 14 games played. Brennan May has a .326/.383/.651 line through 12 games. Juan Perez joins them in the 1.000 OPS club with a .367/.446/.571 line. Carlos Sanchez (.925 OPS) and Wagner Gomez (.900 OPS) have also contributed to the teams impressive offense which ranks 2nd in the league in OPS (.833 to the Dodgers .840). The pitching has also had its bright spots with Jim Moran, Ryan Kemp, Christopher Joyce and Alejandro Chacin all having not allowed an earned run yet out of the bullpen. Alejandro Chacin is an 18 year old who has 12 strikeouts and just 1 walk in 5.1 innings. Justice French has a 2.77 ERA and 22 strikeouts without a walk in 13 innings. The Reds lead the league in strikeouts as a team with 140.