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Severino Dominates New Britain in Thunder Victory

by Matt Kardos | Posted on Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

TRENTON – Tuesday night’s battle between the Thunder and the New Britan Rock Cats was slated to be a star-studded pitching match-up between Yankees top-pitching prospect Luis Severino and Minnesota Twins top-pitching prospect Jose Berrios. The pair of 20-year-old hurlers were teammates for the World team at the MLB Futures Game just a few weeks ago and have both drawn praise for their ability to throw all of their pitches for strikes. The two pitchers are eerily similar and have drawn comparisons on everything from their stuff to their height and weight.; their outings on Tuesday could not have been any more contrasting.

Luis Severino pitched 5.2 innings of dominant ball on Tuesday night. Photo by: Trenton Thunder

Luis Severino pitched 5.2 innings of dominant ball on Tuesday night. Photo by: Trenton Thunder

Berrios, the number 27 prospect in baseball according to Baseball America, surrendered three runs on four hits before departing with two-outs in the second inning with an apparent arm injury. Berrios tossed his 48th and final pitch of the night before Manger Jeff Smith and the New Britan training staff came to the mound to meet with Berrios before ultimately deciding to yank him.

“Jose is fine, it was just precautionary,” Smith said following the Thunder’s 4-1 victory. “When you have a pitcher like that, you have to be very cautious with him when he doesn’t have his best stuff. He just felt some tightness so we wanted to get him out of there.”

Severino,turned in his most dominating effort to date for the Thunder in his third start at the Double-A level. The Dominican-native surrendered just two hits to Aaron Hicks and an unearned run while issuing a pair of walks and fanning seven over his 5.2 innings of work.”

“I was commanding my fastball and throwing my pitches,” Severino said. “I felt comfortable on the mound.”

Severino was clocked as high as 97 MPH on the radar gun and sat between 94-96 by a scout that I surveyed. His electric stuff has the ability to generate a lot of swing-and-misses. On Tuesday night, 39 % of Severino’s strikes were swing-and-misses by the opposition (14 of 55). In his previous start against Binghamton last Thursday, 38 percent of his strikes were offered at and missed by the Mets.

“I thought he had much better command of his fastball tonight, and he used it well,” Manager Tony Franklin said. “He used it up to throw the ball by guys, which is really good.”

The Thunder bullpen held down the lead after Severino exited in the sixth. relievers Nick Goody, Francisco Rondon and Nick Rumbelow managed to keep New Britan off the board for the final 3.1 innings. Mason Williams tacked on an insurance run with an RBI single in the seventh inning to pad the Thunder’s ultimate 4-1 win.

Severino improved to 2-0 for Trenton and lowered his ERA to 1.84 in three starts. He has struck-out 20 in 14.2 innings and has held the opposition to a .186 batting average.

Trenton and New Britain wrap up their three-game series with a Wednesday matinee at ARM & HAMMER Park. The Thunder will send left-hander Dan Camarena (0-4, 7.85 ERA) to the mound, while Jason Wheeler (2-3, 4.21 ERA) will pitch for the Rock Cats. First pitch is slated for 12:05 PM.

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