By BOB REDD
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
With nearly a quarter of the season in the books, the Appalachian League leaders represent many of the league’s 10 teams.
On the mound Kingsport’s Carlos Gomez has a 0.00 earned run average in 17 1/3 innings of work. Jairo Labourt of Bluefield has a 1.65 ERA and Jacob Faria of Princeton has a 1.89 ERA in 19 innings of work. Faria allowed his first runs of the season earlier this week against Greeneville.
Jim Shibuya of Eizabethton has picked up three wins and Bluefield’s Zak Wasilewski and Yeyfry Del Rosario have each won two games.
J.D. Osborne of Greeneville is the saves leader with five and Shane Dawson of Bluefield has earned two saves so far this season.
The league’s workhorse so far has been Edwin Diaz of Pulaski who has pitched 22 innings. Faria leads Princeton with 19 and teammate Nolan Gannon has hurled 18 2/3. Bluefield is led by Wasilewski at 16 2/3 and Labourt with 16 1/3.
In addition to pitching the most innings, Diaz leads the Appy League with 25 strikeouts. Dawson of Bluefield and Faria of Princeton have 20 apiece and Bluefield’s Chase DeJong and Princeton’s Gannon have 16 each.
At the plate Princeton’s Travis Flores leads the league with four home runs. Bluefield’s Eric Arce is tied with five other players with three long balls.
There are 13 batters in the league batting over .300, led by Kenny Peoples-Walls of Johnson City at .406. Maruicio Ramos of Burlington is second at .391. Bluefield’s top batter is Mitch Nay at .297 and Princeton is led by David Garcia at .293.
Peoples-Walls also has the most hits in the league with 28 and Ramos follows with 25. Dawel Lugo leads Bluefield with 20, Nay has 19 and D.J. Davis 17. Garcia tops Princeton with 17.
Victor Caratini of Danville and Dereck Rodriguez of Elizabethton are tied for the league lead in doubles with seven. Lugo of Bluefield and a trio of Princeton Rays, Garcia, Hunter Lockwood and Elias Torres all have five two-baggers.
D.J. Davis of Bluefield leads in triples with five and teammate Derrick Loveless has two.
Ramos is the league leader in RBIs with 14 and Lugo is tied with Peoples-Walls and Brett Wiley of Johnson City with 12.
Nay has knocked in 10 runs. Princeton’s top RBI producers are Flores and Torres with nine apiece.
Through Thursday’s games Bluefield leads the league in total attendance with 10,666 entering the gates of Bowen Field. Burlington is the leader in average attendance with 1,477 watching per game at Burlington Athletic Park. Princeton is averaging 761 per game and 8,700 have watched the Rays this season at Hunnicutt Field.
Looking at the standings, Burlington and Pulaski are tied atop the East Division with Bluefield a game back. Danville is two off the pace and Princeton six-and-a-half behind.
In the West Division Elizabethton has a one-and-a-half game lead over Johnson City, followed by Greeneville, Kingsport and Bristol.
There are several streaks ongoing as teams headed into Friday night’s action. Burlington has won six straight, Pulaski five and Danville four. Bluefield has lost its last five games. Princeton, who takes to the road tonight for a twinbill in Danville, has yet to win a road game this season.