The St. Petersburg Admirals have taken command of the Weekly Team Power Rankings, following a 5-1 stretch since July 2, with their only loss coming on July 4 against the Norfolk Sharks. The Admirals are now 8-2 in their last 10 games.
Their hot run actually began last week, in Week 7, when they swept Miami, then opened went into the weekend 1-1 against the Dallas Deputies.
They then started this past week by taking the rubber match against Dallas 8-6 in a game that saw star pitcher Jose Soto unusually soft, giving up 5 earned runs, and former Toronto Nomads ace closer Cyril Lefevre blowing the save. But an 8th inning rally converted Lefevre’s outing to a win, and rookie international free agent Ryu Saito finished the game and notched his 12th save.
St. Pete’s then hosted Norfolk for four games starting Tuesday, opening with a 5-0 shutout that saw two big home runs from Alex Viramontes. Even the Independence Day loss had been mostly in the Admirals’ pocket as they took a 2-0 lead into the 8th inning. But Robby Noriega allowed a pair of walks and a hit, with the Sharks converting two runs to tie it, and blowing a save. Saito finished the game but allowed the winning runs in when he served up a hanging curve to Norfolk catcher Earl MacPherson, who raked a 2-run shot to win it.
The Admirals recovered in the third game of the set to once again blank the Sharks, 5-0, and then held them to a single run on Friday, closing the series with a 6-1 win.
Yesterday, St. Pete’s continued their long home stand, which started on June 25, with a 4-2 win over another division opponent, the Denver Danger. The remainder of the three-game series continues tonight. Harry Ferguson (5-4, 4.90) gets the start for the Admirals, while the Danger will put up Willie Salazar (4-3, 4.83).
TORRES, TRICITY NAMED PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Hot-hitting Venezuelan third baseman Jose Torres was named Player of the Week for the AEL today, after having a stellar performance as the Nevada Speeders coasted to easy wins against Arizona. Torres went 12-for-22 with 5 walks, a pair of home runs, and 7 RBIs through the week, while just whiffing 3 times. “Ignitor” has 12 home runs this season, and has also put in solid efforts all around, and has been especially good against right-handed pitching, raking 11 of his homers against rightys.
The Lake League announced Ohio Oxen second baseman Alec Tricity was the unanimous choice for Player of the Week. The 26-year-old, who was a 1st round draft pick in 2014, was .478 last week, hitting 3 homers and scoring 5 runs.
It was the first time Tricity had been awarded Player of the Week honors since 2015. For Torres, it was his first Player of the Week nod of his career.