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Aeros postponed Thursday, set to hit the road. White will join team in Erie

By sstorm Published: August 20, 2009

After a slow start to the season, Aeros shortstop Carlos Rivero is now batting .291 (51-for-175) with 19 walks, 10 doubles, six home runs, 22 runs scored and 24 RBI over his last 49 games dating back to June 26.

"Carlos has worked so hard this whole season on being more consistent with his (bat) path to the ball," Aeros manager Mike Sarbaugh said. "Him and (hitting coach) Lee (May Jr.) have done a lot of good work.

"One of the big things we've been talking about with Carlos is being aggressive. When you get your pitch, be ready for it. Early on, he was a little in between, letting the ball get too deep on him. Now he's doing a great job of attacking the ball and getting out ahead in the hitting zone."

In 114 games this season, Rivero's recent hot stretch has raised his overall batting average to .236 with 20 doubles, two triples, seven home runs and 47 RBI. Six of the seven homers have come since the mid-July All-Star break.

The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Rivero has been solid at all season defensively, with his .970 fielding percentage leading all Eastern League shortstops.

"He's been really consistent on defense," Sarbaugh said. "We've been really happy with him over there at short."

IN THE FOLD: Alex White, the Indians No. 1 pick (15th overall) in the June draft looks to make up for lost time in not signing until just minutes before the signing deadline late Monday night.

"I'm going to head out tomorrow to meet the Akron team in Erie, Pa.," the right-handed pitcher said on the Tribe's STO broadcast Thursday. "(I'm going to) get back to a throwing program and build my arm strength back up and just work back to the mound."

Having thrown 107 innings a junior with the University of North Carolina Team that went to the College World Series, White kept the ball out of his hands during contract negotiations. Beating the deadline by mere minute, the 20-year old ultimately signed with the Tribe for $2.25 million.

LIGHTS OUT: In just his third Aeros start, left-hander Eric Berger flirted with a no-hitter through 5 2/3 innings before a ground ball to left side of the infield by Bowie's Daniel Figueroa broke up the no-hit bid and a string of 11 2/3 scoreless innings for Berger.

Unphased, Berger went on to strike out seven through six scoreless innings and has now allowed just one hit to the last 42 batters he's faced dating back to his previous start.

"His last two starts have really been impressive," Sarbaugh said. "I think his first outing here at home in front of a packed crowd, he was just a little nervous. Since then, he's really been on a roll."

GAME POSTPONED: Thursday's Aeros game was postponed due to inclement weather. A heavy thunderstorm that passed through the area around 6 p.m. left the Canal Park field with unplayable conditions with standing water all along the warning track and in the dugouts.

While the make-up game has not yet been scheduled, odds are it will be made up as part of a double header sometime next week when the Aeros travel to Bowie, Md., Aug. 25-27- the last time the two teams are scheduled to meet in the regular season.

UP NEXT: The Aeros hit the road for a two-city, eight-game road trip that begins tonight at 7:05 p.m. in Erie (Detroit Tigers) with a four-game series at Jerry Uht Park. Aeros right-hander Jeanmar Gomez (10-3, 3-06 ERA) is slated to SeaWolves right-hander Jonah Nickerson (8-10, 5.05 ERA).


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