Las Vegas 51’s 7, Chihuahuas 2
Key Statistics: CF Manuel Margot, 2-for-5, RS, 2B, RBI, SB (8); 2B Casey McElroy, 2-for-4; LF Yeison Asencio, 2-for-4; RHP Daniel McCutchen (L, 4-2) 5.2 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K; LHP Keith Hessler (organizational debut) IP, K.
Prospect Watch: The Chihuahuas scored in the first, but the 51’s were able to add a pair runs in the fourth, sixth and eighth innings to pull away ... Center fielder Manny Margot had a pair of hits including a double in the loss. Margot has posted solid but not necessarily spectacular numbers in his first stint in the Pacific Coast League. Margot is hitting .269/.323/.395 with a pair of homers and eight stolen bases in 2016. Margot has displayed the ability to put the ball in play, in addition to playing a solid center field, despite being one of the younger players in the league ... Second baseman Casey McElroy had yet another multi-hit game -- his 11th in his last 12 games! The 26-year-old gave some insight to his experiences this season in an interview with John Conniff. The hot-hitting second baseman has to be on the radar, should the Padres need to dip into the minors for another infielder. Or, they could just add a 4th catcher, right?
Midland RockHounds 5, Missions 4 (11)
Key Statistics: CF Auston Bousfield, 2-for-5, HR (2), 2B, RBI, RS; 1B Mike Olt, 2-for-4, BB; 3B Gabriel Quintana, 1-for-5, HR (4), RS, 3 RBI; RHP Luis Diaz, 6 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 8 K; RHP Jason Jester 2 IP, 2 H, 4 K. RHP Adam Cimber (L, 0-1) IP, H, ER, BB.
Prospect Watch: The Missions trailed by four, until they tied the game up with a four-run seventh inning. The RockHounds pushed across a run in the 11th to come away with the victory ... Auston Bousfield had a pair of extra-base hits, including his second home run of the season. Bousfield, a fifth-rounder in 2014. has struggled this season, hitting just .200/.310/.314. On a positive note, Bousfield has improved his walk rate to over 14%; up from 12% a year ago. Bousfield has an above-average hit tool and should heat up as the summer goes on ... RHP Jason Jester pitched a pair of scoreless innings and struck out four batters. The Padres’ 23rd round-pick in 2014 has emerged as the closer for the Missions and has converted all four save opportunities. Jester, 25, has struck out 14 batters in 10 innings, without issuing a walk, although opposing batters are hitting .314 against him.
Storm 3, Inland Empire 66’ers 1
Key Statistics: 3B Luis Urias, 1-for-4, 2B, RBI; LF Edwin Moreno, 1-for-3, 2B, RS; RHP Chris Huffman, (W, 4-1) 5 IP, 7 H, ER, BB, 3 K; RHP Colby Blueberg (S, 5) 2 IP, H, 2 K.
Prospect Watch: The Storm completed the sweep of the Angels’ affiliate ... Starter Chris Huffman continues to pitch well, as the 23-year-old righty allowed just one run in six innings. Huffman started the year in the Storm bullpen but injuries and ineffectiveness have given him an opportunity to start. Huffman’s four wins are third in the league and he has a solid 4:1 strikeout-to-walk rate in his first nine games (four starts) in the Cal League ... RHP Colby Blueburg got the six-out save, allowing just one hit while striking out a pair. The righty out of Nevada has drawn comparisons to current Friar Kevin Quackenbush and with good reason. The 23-year-old has a 1.69 ERA in 16 innings, and has struck out 18 batters without allowing a walk. His career ERA is now 1.29 in 73 career appearances ... The Storm currently lead the Cal League with a team ERA of 3.28; a season ago the team had an ERA of 5.21 -- the worst in the 10-team league.
West Michigan WhiteCaps 5, TinCaps 2
Key Statistics: C Austin Allen, 2-for-4, 2B, RS; 3B Carlos Belen. 2-for-4, 2B, RS; LHP Logan Allen, 4 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 K; LHP Jerry Keel 2.1 IP, 3 H, unearned run, 3 BB.
Prospect Watch: The WhiteCaps jumped out with three in the first and never looked back ... LHP Logan Allen turned in one of his worst outings of the young season, as the 18-year-old allowed three earned runs in four innings. Allen has allowed 12 hits in his last two outings (8 innings), although he has not allowed a home run in 23 innings of work. Allen has a 2.74 ERA in seven outings for the TinCaps this year ... Catcher Austin Allen had a pair of hits in the loss, including his seventh double of the year. Allen has cooled off considerably after an unbelievable start. The big left-handed hitter is hitting just .242 over his last 10 games, but is still hitting .411/.491/.522 this season. As the warmer air hits the Midwest, Allen should be a good bet to hit for more power. Baseball America had this wonderful write-up of Allen online earlier on Thursday.
Roster Moves: There were a few moves that involved El Paso and San Antonio Thursday. Here is a look of what is going on:
El Paso: Received LHP Keith Hessler, transferred RHP Seth Rosin to San Antonio. Kessler, 27, was claimed by the Padres on Tuesday and was with San Diego yesterday as the 26th man in the doubleheader versus the Cubs. Hessler, 27, fits the mold of large humans (listed at 6’4, 240 lbs) that are in abundance throughout the organization. Hessler has a 8.22 ERA in 20 Major League appearances but did have a 2.14 ERA in the Arizona system a season ago. He pitched a scoreless inning for El Paso Thursday night.
Rosin, 27, should be a candidate for the Missions’ rotation (more on that in a minute). He started the year in extended spring training and has a 3.86 ERA in two appearances for El Paso. He pitched last season in the Phillies’ organization and was part of the haul Philadelphia received for outfielder Hunter Pence in 2012.
San Antonio: Sent Johnny Hellweg to extended spring training. In a move that seemed predictable, the Padres have sent Hellweg back to extended spring training. The big righty with a powerful heater was a unmitigated disaster for the Missions this year and couldn’t make it out of the first inning in his last start. Hellweg has a 10.97 ERA in six starts, that includes a 2.16 WHIP.