In American Association Daily, this is the unofficial All-Star break in the American Association, so Robert Pannier takes a look at the Gary Southshore RailCats and how they have performed to this point in the season and take a look at what to expect as the American Association heads to its stretch run.
A Look at the Gary Southshore RailCats: Summary
Record: 32-27, Tied for Second (1.0 out of First in North Division)
Team Batting: Avg: .264 (7th), HR: 22 (12th), R: 252 (10th), SB: 49 (7th)
Team Pitching: ERA: 3.72 (2nd), Saves: 15 (T-7th), WHIP: 1.32 (2nd)
Batting: D.K. Carey (.325)
Home Runs: Colin Willis, Alex Crosby (5)
RBI: Andy Paz, Colin Willis (24)
Runs Scored: Alex Crosby (37)
Stolen Bases: Andy DeJesus (10)
Wins: Daniel Minor (10)
ERA: Myles Smith (1.33)
Saves: Gabe Perez, Adam Quintana (5)
IP: Daniel Minor (88)
The Gary Southshore RailCats Highlights
The highlights of the Gary Southshore RailCats must begin with the incredible performance of right-hander Daniel Minor. The RailCats Ace leads the league with a 10-2 record, has pitched the most innings, and has an outstanding 2.76 ERA. Minor has been nothing short of amazing the season and is the prime reason why this team is in the running for the North Division title.
The pitching, in general, has been outstanding, and they have only been getting better. This was a team that was in the middle of the pack in terms of ERA for the first five weeks of the season, but they have moved into second, allowing 10 runs in their last five games.
After starting out the season 2-5, Gary Southshore ran off eight straight victories and won 13 out of 16 to establish themselves as the team to beat in the division. The RailCats have found themselves as far as 3.5 games out of first, but have always stepped up their game, making a run to get back atop the division. Currently, the team has won eight of their last 10.
The Gary Southshore RailCats Low-Lights
The performance of the lineup has been solid but not championship level. What has been most surprising is that the RailCats have not run as much as we are accustomed from a Greg Tagert led team. They are seventh in stolen bases and if they could get running that would greatly help to make this team a lot more dangerous.
Top Player – Colin Willis
Colin Willis got off to a slow start, hitting just .197 on June 7, but he has really raised his game, hitting .271 through the first 55 games of the season. Willis has scored 29 runs this season and has driven in a team-high 24. He also is tied for the team lead in home runs with five and has four stolen bases.
Top Pitcher – Daniel Minor
Daniel Minor isn’t just the best pitcher on the RailCats staff, he’s the best in the American Association. Minor leads in wins, game started (14), and innings pitched (88.0). He has a good shot at winning at least 15 games this season and should be a prime factor in determining whether the Gary Southshore RailCats win this division.
They say that pitching and defense wins championships and there is no doubt that the Gary Southshore RailCats have plenty of both. The team has faced its rut with the lineup and has not withered, and now they find themselves in second place in the division. They will be tough to beat down the stretch, but are going to need another bat if they are going to be the team to beat.
By Robert Pannier