- The Winston-Salem Dash clinched the Carolina League’ Southern Division First Half Championship, which means they will be in the playoffs after the regular season ends in September. The Dash's 43-25-1 record is the third-best mark in all of High-A baseball. The Dash have already begun to see some of their key performers graduate to Birmingham and that's likely to accelerate in the next few weeks.
- One of those departures is RHP Andre Rienzo, who returned from his 50 game suspension for a positive steroid test and went right to the Barons. His debut last night was shaky: 3.1 IP, 3 H, 5 BB, 2 K.
- Birmingham is last in their division so they'll hope that some of the Dash's success comes with the promoted players. But their second half push will need to be supported by improvement from some of their current players, including SS Tyler Saladino (.236/.382/.332), 1B Andy Wilkins (.216/.330/.409) and the very disappointing RHP Nestor Molina (79.1 IP, 102 H, 17 BB, 57 K).
- The International League doesn't split its regular season into halves so the first place Charlotte Knights are going to need to sustain their solid team play through September. Having Dan Johnson, one of the best Triple-A players of all-time, on your team certainly helps - .291/.426/.561. The 32 year old is a veteran of numerous minor league playoff teams.