Waldrop Has Four Hits

Before the season Kyle Waldrop was a candidate to have power numbers jump when moving to the California League and he is living up to that expectation. He's been on a tear offensively over the last few weeks and showing that he's ready for AA as a 22 year-old next season.

Bakersfield rallied for four runs in the fourth inning and coasted to a 7-2 home win over Visalia. Julio Morillo tied the game in the third when he singled and scored later on a groundout. In the go-ahead rally Kyle Waldrop gave his team the lead by leading off with a homer, David Vidal followed with a single and scored on an error before Steve Selsky delivered a two-run single. Waldrop struck again the next frame by leading off with a double and scoring on a groundout. Selsky drove in the final run with another single in the eighth.

Waldrop led the offense with four hits while Selsky reached safely with two hits and a walk. Morillo also reached three times with a hit and two walks and Junior Arias had a single, walk, RBI, and scored a run. On the mound Shane Dyer got the win for allowing only one run on six hits/two walks over the first six innings while striking out four. Jimmy Moran and Pat Doyle finished the game with one scoreless inning each.

Waldrop's bat has been on fire, hitting .370 over his last 23 games to bring his season average up to .262/.308 OB. He's also homered eight times in his last nineteen appearances to bring that total up to 21 on the year. Before the year started he was a candidate to break out in the power department after arriving in hitter-friendly California League and now he's two homers behind the league leader. His slugging percentage is now approaching the .500 mark at .484.

Defensively he's moved over to left field for most of his action where's he's made only two errors in 102 games and running down about one and a half putouts per contest. He spend a good portion of last season in right field, but most of that action with the Blaze this season has gone to strong-armed Juan Duran and Waldrop should be able to move to the other corner if needed.

Waldrop started off 2013 slowly and was hitting under .200 at the end of April. He's improved his average nearly every month over the preceding one and now has made a case for advancement to AA next season. His walk rate has dropped a bit over what he did at Dayton last year, hence the small AVG/OB differential. He's also struck out more against higher level pitching, but with them again he's already more than doubled his home run total of eight in 2012 and he'll have opportunity to improve plate discipline as he advances.

The Reds have put a few highly-rated outfield prospects in their system from high selections over the past couple of drafts. Waldrop will be staying ahead of them in the pipeline as everyone advances next season. It will be interesting to see how well the power numbers hold up when he returns closer to sea level but he's still only 21 years old and he'll have a chance to prove himself at Pensacola in 2014.

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The Reds kept on winning by shutting out the Cubs 5-0 at Wrigley. Bronson Arroyo was on his game and tossed seven shutout innings, allowing only two hits and striking out seven without a walk for the win. Todd Frazier got scoring started early with a solo homer in the first. He and Zach Cozart had two hits apiece.

Louisville scored four runs in the seventh, but it was not enough for a comeback in their 6-5 loss at Pawtucket. The top of the Bats lineup was heavy on offense with Derrick Robinson stroking three hits, Neftali Soto reaching with two hits and a walk, and Billy Hamilton and Felix Perez finishing with two hits each. Chad Rogers ran into trouble in the sixth and took the loss for allowing six runs in five-plus innings.

Pensacola took their home game into extra innings before losing 3-2 to Mississippi in thirteen. Tucker Barnhart reached with two hits and a walk while Josh Fellhauer drove in both Wahoo runs with a double. Tim Crabbe got no decision for allowing one run on seven hits/three walks while striking out nine over six innings. Loek Van Mil took the loss for allowing a run in 1 2/3 innings pitched.

Dayton scored two runs in the sixth inning in their 3-1 win over visiting Great Lakes. Jesse Winker had a couple of hits and Zach Vincej had two RBI including a solo homer to tie the score in the fifth. Ismael Guillon had a nice outing for the win, allowing one run on five hits/one walk in six innings with five strikeouts. Alejandro Chacin entered in the eighth and struck out three while finishing the game without allowing a run for the save.

Billings allowed seven runs in the sixth inning in their 10-1 at Idaho Falls. Ronald Bueno had two of the five Mustang hits. Pedro Diaz was victimized by an error and allowed seven runs (three earned) in five-plus innings for the loss.

The AZL Reds had another day off and will resume their schedule against the AZL Royals Thursday.

The DSL Reds scored early and often in a 7-1 win over the DSL Padres. Hector Vargas had three hits, a walk and three RBI for the Reds. Miguel Mendez added three hits and Jose Siri added two more, including a triple. Jose DeSousa tossed four scoreless innings and allowed only two hits/two walks with six strikeouts, but he did not last long enough for the win. That went to David Jones who relieved him with two innings and allowed one run. John Zapata finished with three scoreless frames which qualified him for the save.

The DSL Rojos took a two-run lead in the top of the third inning and held on for a 4-2 win over the DSL Cardinals. Luis Gonzalez led the Reds with two hits and two RBI. Jean Lara got the win for allowing only one run on five hits/one walk while striking out five in five innings pitched. Fabian Bohorquez relieved him with four innings over which he allowed only one unearned run and picked up the save.

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