Friday, July 29, 2016

The Armando Araiza Game, MLB'er to Rehab w/Biscuits


When catcher Armando Araiza came out of the tunnel on Thursday, it was apparent he was the starting catcher for the Biscuits that night.

The backstop had been with the team earlier in the season, mostly as a bullpen catcher. In May Armando was loaned out to a Mexican League team. He was there for a month or so, playing with the Tigres de Quintana Roos in Cancun.

Now back with the Rays affiliates, Araiza made his double-A debut behind the plate in the third game of the series against Pensacola.

Doing a nice job behind the dish, Armando handled top pitching prospect Brent Honeywell as the Biscuits matched the Wahoos in a pitchers duel. Honeywell was excellent, allowing just one run and striking out six.

After failing to reach base in his first two at bats, Armando singled in the seventh inning to right field for his first double-A hit. 

In a surprise attack, skipper Brady Williams gave the steal sign, sending the burly catcher barreling towards second base and catching the Wahoo infielders completely unawares.

In a brilliant piece of hitting, batter Pat Blair read the defense well and executed a perfect hit-and-run. Blair waited back on a slow offspeed pitch and slapped it behind the scrambling baserunner Ariaza and into right field. Ariaza easily took third, putting runners at the corners with one out in the inning.

If the hit-and-run with Ariaza stealing caught the Wahoos by surprise, Brady Williams took advantage of it and while the opponents were still reeling from the shock the Biscuits skipper put the squeeze play on.

Lee gets a bunt down
Braxton Lee dropped down a bunt, from third base Armando Ariaza raced towards the plate.

Bauers also had an RBI single
The Wahoos pitcher corralled the ball but the other defenders were caught spectating on the play, watching it unfold with their mouths open as all Biscuit runners reached their stations safely.

Kean Wong followed with an RBI single to extend the lead to 3-1 and chase the Pcola starter.


After not getting a single at bat for Montgomery thru July 27th, Araiza now was called on to bat in back-to-back innings. He came to bat in the bottom of the 8th and tapped a slow roller down the third base line.

The easy grounder was picked up quickly but the Wahoo third sacker delivered the throw well over the head of the first baseman and all the way down the line into the bullpen. Araiza had to kick into high gear, motoring all the way to third base on the errant throw.

He was erased on a fielders choice, likely happy to get a moment to catch his breath before catching the last frame.

Relievers Adam Kolarek, Kyle Winkler and Jaye Chapman did a fine job of shutting the door in the late innings to seal the 4-1 Biscuit victory.

The rumour is that the Tampa Rays will send pitcher Chase Whitley to rehab in Montgomery.

Whitley, working his way back from Tommy Juan surgery, should pitch on Saturday. Whitley has already made two appearances for the StoneCrabs and may be ready to move up.

Chase is an Alabama native, a former Troy University Trojan and broke into the major leagues with the New York Yankees in May of 2014. In May of the following year he had an injury that led to surgery, in November he was claimed from Waivers by Tampa.

It would be great to host another rehabbing major leaguer and I am sure fans of Troy University will want to see one of their own on the hill for the Biscuits!

No comments: