Bill on Baseball from Bill Hass with Greensboro Grasshoppers:Galloway shines and Realmuto out with 15 stitches to the hand…..
Bill Hass from www.gsohoppers.com and formerly with the News and Record, on last night’s Greensboro Grasshoppers’ win and the work turned in by Hoppers’ outfielder Isaac Galloway and the end result of the injury suffered by catcher Jacob J.T. Realmuto……Again, check out all of Bill’s Baseball Blogs at the gsohoppers site…..
I could tell something was up.
As I talked with outfielder Isaac Galloway outside the locker room after his game-winning home run Tuesday night, a group of his Hopper teammates wandered into the conversation. Their wide grins gave them away.
Sure enough, one of them — I couldn’t see who — got him with a pie tin full of shaving cream, one of baseball’s traditional “rewards” for being a hero. Galloway is quick enough that it didn’t catch him full in the face, but he spent the next few minutes wiping a big glob of the stuff off his neck and out of his ear with a towel that his teammates mercifully provided.
Galloway took it in good-natured stride. It was his second game-winning home run in 10 days. The first was a three-run shot that capped a seven-run rally in the bottom of the eighth inning to beat Hagerstown on May 21. This one came in the bottom of the ninth against Lexington with the game tied 2-2.
Legends relief pitcher Jorge DeLeon had been hitting 96 on the radar gun, so Galloway knew what to expect.
“I knew he threw hard so I was looking for a fastball in and that’s what I got,” he said. “If it had been somewhere else, I would have taken it, but it was right in the place I was looking for it. I knew it was gone — I got it pretty good.
“It’s a good feeling. You battle for nine innings and then do something to help the team win.”
It was Galloway’s seventh home run this year, showing that he’s making progress in returning from a lacerated kidney suffered in an outfield collision in Jupiter in 2010. There are no lingering effects from that injury, which limited him to 37 games and pretty much dictated he would return to the Hoppers, where he played in 2009.
“He’s a guy that we all said, with him missing so much time, it would be good for him to come back here and just play,” said Jack Howell, the Florida Marlins’ hitting instructor. “With a good year here, I think he could move pretty quick (through the organization) and I’ll think you’ll see that.”
One of Galloway’s top assets is his defense in center field. He covers a lot of ground with his great speed in a way that makes it seem as if he’s gliding more than running.
“He’s effortless,” said Tarik Brock, the Marlins’ outfield coordinator. “He truly attacks attacks the ball. Every ball that goes up, he has the attitude ‘I can catch it.’”
Galloway is perfectly suited for center field.
“I love the freedom of being able to run,” he said. “I like it when someone hits it in the gap and thinks he’s got (an extra base hit) and I run it down.”
As for his hitting, Howell said Galloway needs to stay on sliders away and off-speed pitches down in the zone and learn to take them to the opposite field. That’s common for young hitters — and Galloway is only 21. But he has one ability Howell loves.
“I’ve always felt that for guys to be prospects, to really have a chance to make the big leagues, you’ve got to be able to hit a good fastball,” Howell said. “And fastball middle in. He’s as good as anybody we have at doing that.”
Galloway missed a few games early in the season after his grandfather died. The two were close, with baseball as a common thread. In 1960, Isaac Galloway Jr. pitched briefly in the minor leagues. More than 20 years later, Isaac (Ike) Galloway III played two seasons in the Phillies’ system. Now Isaac Galloway IV carries the family baseball banner.
“My grandpa meant a lot to me,” he said. “He listened to my games every night. It put things in perspective for me about how blessed I am to be able to play this game, so I’ve dedicated this year to him.”
REALMUTO INJURY: J.T. Realmuto began last night’s game behind the plate but was replaced by Wilfredo Gimenez in the top of the third inning. In the bottom of the second inning. Realmuto was thrown out on a play at home plate and the Lexington catcher stepped on his left hand.
“Fifteen stitches,” manager Andy Haines said. “And he was lucky because no ligaments or tendons were damaged.”
The upshot is that Realmuto could miss up to three weeks — which might mean the rest of the first half of the season. He will be placed on the DL but as of Wednesday morning no roster move had been made. Gimenez and Aaron Dudley can handle the catching, so the replacement could be a pitcher.