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Around The Farm: April 19, 2017- Krieger and Bradley shine in Akron rout while Kratz continues stellar season

On Monday, Eric Kratz continued to dominate International League pitching in relatively limited at-bats for the Clippers. Last night's action also included an easy win for the RubberDucks which saw the continuation of a stellar season for Tyler Krieger and hopefully the beginning of one for Bobby Bradley. Read about all of these performances and more as the IBI's Arthur Kinney takes us Around The Farm...

Around the Farm takes a quick look at some of yesterday’s performances by Cleveland prospects throughout the system. The positions listed below are where the player was playing in yesterday’s game.

SCOREBOARD

R H E R H E
Columbus 4 9 0 Akron 12 14 0
Lehigh Valley 8 9 1 Reading 2 6 1
BOX BOX
Suspended - 4th inning R H E
Bowling Green 2 3 0
Lake County 0 0 1
BOX

HIGHLIGHTS

Erik Kratz (Columbus, C) - 3-4, 2 R, 2 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI - Kratz has only played every other day this season (not uncommon for a minor league catcher), but when he has played, he has hit extremely well.  He is batting .429/.467/.821 with three home runs and five RBI in seven games. Last night was his first three-hit game of the season, with his prior six efforts being divided evenly between two-hit and one-hit performances. While he obviously won't keep up this pace all season, he is making a strong case for increased playing time and serious consideration for a return to the major league level, where he has played 224 games over the past seven seasons, either as an injury replacement or, preferably, as a September call-up.

Tyler Krieger (Akron, 2B) - 4-5, 3 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 3 RBI, 1 BB - Krieger continues to blitz Eastern League pitching as he extended his current hitting streak to four games with his fourth multi-hit game of the season (and second in a row). He is now batting .419 with eight RBI in as many games played. This incredible start to the season is especially amazing because it isn't the work of a man repeating a level that he ended the previous season at. Tyler has posted these numbers in his first eight games above the Single-A level. Well....his first eight MiLB games above the Single-A level as he is almost certainly benefiting from the exposure to high-level baseball in a competitive environment he received as the starting second baseman for Israel in this spring's World Baseball Classic.  See, the WBC can be beneficial to MLB organizations.

Bobby Bradley (Akron,1B) - 2-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 1 BB, 1 Sac Fly - Bradley extended his hitting streak to three games with this stellar performance. During the streak, Bobby is batting .400 (4-for-10), compared to .107 in the nine games that preceded (a stretch which included seven hitless games). Hopefully, the beginning of the season is the anomaly and not his recent improvement. This hope is reasonable since Bradley is making his Double-A debut this season.  However, he did have a 3-for-7 two-game stretch in the middle of those nine games and reverted to going hitless on a nightly basis.

THE REST

  • Ronny Rodriguez (Columbus, SS) - 2-3, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 Sac Fly - Ronny-Rod extends his hitting streak to three games with his second multi-hit game in his last five (fourth overall of the season). He also drove in his fifth run of the season (in ten games) and improved his batting average by 31 points (.225 to .256).
  • Tyler Naquin (Columbus, CF) - 1-4, 1 R, 1 3B - Naquin now has hits in each of his first five Triple-A games following his assignment due to Lonnie Chisenhall's activation from the Big Club's 10-day DL. Clearly, Naquin isn't sulking in the aftermath of his demotion.
  • Richie Shaffer (Columbus, LF) - 1-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 3 K - Shaffer continued his solid start to the season (.308/.417/.538 with 9 RBI in 12 games) with a sixth-inning solo home run. While striking out in his other three plate appearances is concerning, it is not yet part of a pattern. His three punchouts nearly doubled his season total (had struck out four times entering last night).
  • Giovanny Urshela (Columbus, 3B) - 2-4, 1 RBI - Urshela had a two-hit night for only the second time in a season where he has consistently posted one-hit stat lines (seven one-hit games, two with two hits, and two hitless contests in eleven played).
  • Adam Plutko (Columbus, SP) - L (0-2), 5 IP, 7 H, 7 R (all earned), 2 BB (1 intentional), 8 K, 2 HR allowed - Plutko's season continues to be a rough one as he followed up his season debut (3 ER on 4 H and 2 BB in 2.2 IP) with this outing. Maybe it's a slump, or maybe a sign of an undiagnosed injury. Let's hope for the former.
  • Carlos Frias (Columbus, RP) - 2 IP, 1 H, 1 R (earned) - Frias makes it two solid outings in a row. Hopefully, this represents a permanent break from the "bad outing, good outing" pattern that he has started the season in.
  • Joe Colon (Columbus, RP) - 1 IP, 1 H, 1 K - Colon continues his solid season as his ERA decreases further to 1.35 (1 ER in 6.2 IP).
  • Greg Allen (Akron, CF) - 1-5, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K - Allen managed to be productive even on a night when he didn't hit well.
  • Yu Chang (Akron, SS) - 1-4, 2 R, 1 RBI, 1 K, 1 Sac Fly, 1 HBP - Even on a rough day, Chang drives in a run (his 13th in as many games this season) on a sacrifice fly.
  • Dorssys Paulino (Akron, DH) - 2-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB - Paulino extended his hitting streak to five games, including four two-hit games, on Wednesday night.  He is currently batting .314/.368/.543 with two home runs, a triple, seven RBI, and a stolen base in ten games. He is 9-for-20 (.450) during his hitting streak.
  • Ivan Castillo (Akron, 3B) - 2-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 BB - Castillo's seven-game hitless streak to start the season finally ended with a solid effort at the plate on Wednesday evening.
  • Michael Peoples (Akron, SP) - W (1-1), 6.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R (earned), 3 BB, 5 K, 1 HR allowed - While Peoples continues his pattern of allowing exactly two earned runs in each start, he did improve on his first two outings by allowing only four hits, compared to seven in his 2017 debut and eight in his second appearance.
  • Mitch Brown (Akron, RP) - 1.1 IP, 1 H, 3 BB, 3 K, 1 WP - Brown pitched well when he could keep the ball in the zone, but suffered from some control issues on Wednesday.
  • Robbie Aviles (Akron, RP) - 1 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K - Aviles rebounded from two ugly outings in a row (combined 5 ER on 6 H in three innings) and pitched well for the first time since his perfect inning on Opening Day.

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