Chihuahuas 6 - Albuquerque Isotopes 3
Key Stats: RHP Carlos Pimentel 6 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, K (W, 6-4); 2B Carlos Asuaje 4-4, 2B, 2 RS, 2 RBI; RF Hunter Renfroe 3-4, RS, RBI; CF Manuel Margot 1-4, RS
Prospect Watch: After leaving last nights game after a hit by pitch, Jabari Blash had a pinch hitting appearance in the game. As per his usual self he ended his at bat in one of his three outcomes (extra base hit, walk, strike out). In this case it was a strike out… Catcher Austin Hedges has now been back for a week. While his defense will always be there his offense is slow to catch up. The top prospect (even if no longer a rookie) was hitting .333/.385/.583 at the time of the injury. In a weeks worth of games now he is just 4-20 with no extra base hits. Small sample size, and you would assume that it takes awhile to get back to speed after missing two months, but still noteworthy… While it might be debatable whether RF Hunter Renfroe is ready for the callup, he is also one of the streakiest hitters in the organization. During his recent hot streak (the last seven games) he is hitting a blistering 14-34 (.412), 2B, 3B, 2 HR, 9 RBI, 4 K. While Renfroe has not drawn a walk in the last month, he has also benefited from batting in front of either Dickerson or Schrimf. He is still working the count and putting good swings on pitches. It is just hard to walk when pitchers are continually throwing you strikes.
Midland Rockhounds 5 – Missions 0 (5 innings)
Key Stats: RHP Dinelson Lamet 4.2 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 3 BB, 4 K; SS Jose Rondon 2-2, 2B
Prospect Watch: Those that think that Double A is an easier place to pitch (compared to hitter friendly High A and Triple A) should tell that to Dinelson Lamet. For the second start in a row Lamet struggled the entire game. He was constantly either falling behind players or grooving pitches right down the plate. The same pitcher who would have started the High A All Star game continued to struggle with location. In his two starts on San Antonio Lamet has now walked seven batters in just 9.2 innings while surrendering eight earned runs. This struggle actually started his last two starts in Lake Elsinore when he had his worst starts of the year. The fact that he has now had four bad starts in a row might point to an injury or general arm soreness.
Storm 9 - High Desert Mavericks 2
Key Stats: RHP Zech Lemond 3 IP, 2 H, ER, 2 K; RHP Brad Wieck 3 IP, 3 H, 5 K; DH Luis Urias 2-4, BB; CF Franchy Cordero 3-5, 3 RS, HR (5), RBI; RF Franmil Reyes 1-4, HR (5), 2 RS, 3 RBI; 1B Trae Santos 1-4, HR (3), 3 RBI; SS Javier Guerra 1-4, 2 RBI, BB
Prospect Watch: While it hasn’t been quite the season that would put Franchy Cordero back in the top prospect discussion, he has quietly put together the best season of his career. The still 21 year old is batting a solid .278/.325/.437 with 13 doubles, seven triples, and five home runs. With today’s extra base hit Cordero now has more extra base hits this year (25) than he has in any previous year (including last year when he played in 126 games). His defense is no longer a concern as he has picked up centerfield a lot quicker than he did shortstop. Unfortunately, Cordero will never reappear on those prospect lists until he cuts down on his strikeouts (currently 74 in 65 games). Still it is great to see Franchy’s OPS jump 150 points from last year to now.
TinCaps 5 - Western Michigan Whitecaps 0
Key Stats: RHP Jacob Nix 5 IP, 5 H, 4 K (W, 1-3); CF Michael Gettys 1-3, RS, BB, SB (24); C AJ Kennedy 1-4, 2B, 2 RBI
Prospect Watch: Early on in Fort Wayne today it was a tale of two pitchers. The Whitecap’s pitcher, Beau Burrows, struggled to find the plate. The TinCaps batters were constantly working the count fouling off tough pitches, and making Burrows throw a lot of pitches. So much so that he was removed from the game after getting just one out in the third and tossing 64 pitches already. The TinCaps All Star Jacob Nix, on the other hand, needed the exact same number of pitches to get through five fairly stress free innings. Even though Nix did not have his best stuff, as he fell behind nearly 60% of batters, the Whitecap batters would swing at 1-0, 2-0, 2-1, and most of the time would weakly ground out or popout. Nix showed that even when he doesn’t have his best stuff, on any given night he can still be incredibly effective.
Nix would have allowed a run in third as he allowed a single up the middle with a runner on second and two outs. However, an absolute bullet throw by fellow All Star CF Michael Gettys and the runner was out to end the inning. With the outfield assist, Gettys now extends his lead for most in the MWL, and puts him back in the top five in all of the minors. Eventually a team will stop trying to take the extra base off of him.