My father and I returned from Lakeland today after a very enjoyable trip. We saw three good games, although the Flying Tigers lost Saturday's game. They were indeed more entertaining than the Tigers have been this year which is not hard to do. I got a chance to meet several friends from Motownsports.com which is always fun.
Joker Marchant Stadium is a great place to watch a game. The crowds were pretty small which allowed me to go all over the park viewing the game from different locations. I even sat in the "Berm area" (a grass hill behind the outfield fence leading up to a patio with benches and tables) for a few innings watching the outfielders as kids rolled down the hill in front of me. They had a pretty impressive team poster give away on Saturday night - a 2 foot by 1 1/2 foot team photo. That was a pretty good gift for a minor league game where tickets cost $6 max. They also had a spectacular fireworks show after the game on Saturday night. The Flying Tigers definitely put on a great show for their fans.
I talked about Rick Porcello, Jeremy Laster and Guillermo Moscoso in yesterday's post. I'm an analyst rather than a scout but here are some of my observations on some of the other players I saw:
James Skelton - probably the smallest catcher I've ever seen. He has no power but is an on base machine and has pretty good speed. Another way he misfits the catcher prototype is that he bats left-handed. I've never really understood why a catcher needs to be big as their seems to some advantages to a catcher being small and agile. It's been said that big catchers are more durable at a position where a player takes a beating. I'm not convinced that size has a lot to do with durability though.
Scott Sizemore - didn't have a great game on Saturday but generally seems to work the count and have good at bats. He made a couple of good plays Friday night.
Cale Iorg - got two hits in each of the three games and hit the ball hard. He looked pretty solid at shortstop as well.
Ryan Strieby -a power hitting first baseman who got two homers during the series.
Jay Sborz - looks to be a lot more in control than when I saw him play for the Oneonta Tigers a couple of years ago. The reliever still throws hard and reached 97 when I saw him but now throws strikes.