M's Minor League Players of the Week

Two second basemen and a college left-hander dominate the headlines in this week's edition of the Players of the Week.

Jose Lopez, 2B - Tacoma

The M's future at second base hasn't had any problems hitting Triple-A pitching. Last season the Venezuelan hit .295 with 13 home runs in 74 games before hitting .232 with five home runs in the big leagues.

Lopez struggled with the breaking ball in the show and began his 2005 season back in Tacoma - after a hand injury that sidelined the 21-year-old two separate times this spring.

The right-handed hitting former shortstop hit just .228 with little power and was again optioned to Triple-A Tacoma - where he promptly picked up right where he left off in the PCL.

Lopez went 13-for-26 over the past week, with a home run, five doubles, seven runs scored and five RBI in seven games.

The 6-foot, 200-pound infielder is hitting .314 with five home runs and 23 RBI in 30 games with the Rainiers. Lopez sports a sparkling .545 slugging percentage, thanks in large part to 13 doubles.

Luis Valbuena, 2B - Everett

Valbuena recorded 12 hits in 30 at-bats (.400) this past week, but collected all but one of them in four of the seven games he started for the AquaSox.

The 19-year-old started the week off with just one hit in eight at-bats but finished the week 8-for-14 with four home runs and three doubles. Valbuena tallied 13 RBI for the week and scored seven runs.

The Sox star second baseman leads the Northwest League in home runs with 10 and RBI with 41. Valbuena is hitting .284/.365/.512 on the season.

Robert Rohrbaugh, LHP - Everett

The M's 7th round pick this past June has spun his rookie season in pro ball into a stellar audition for a future in the organization.

Rohrbaugh tossed seven shutout innings at the Eugene Emeralds on August 12, allowing just two hits and two walks while striking out six batters.

The left-hander is 4-1 in 10 games for Everett, sporting a solid 3.68 ERA in 44 innings. Rohrbaugh has struck out 42 and walked 11.

Jason A Churchill is the Executive Editor at InsidethePark.com and can be reached via e-mail at JasonAChurchill@InsideThePark.com

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