Jeff Nycz

San Diego Padres Daily Minor League Report: April 17

Monday was another frustrating day on the farm as all four squads in action lost. The Chihuahuas lost the rubber game in Reno, while San Antonio’s bats were quiet in a loss at home. Both Lake Elsinore and Fort Wayne lost, despite holding late leads. However, despite the losses, there were a few individual performances worth noting.

Reno Aces 13, Chihuahuas 2

Key Statistics: 2B Carlos Asuaje, 2-for-3, 2B, RS, BB; SS Dusty Coleman, 1-for-4, 3B, RS; RHP Jake Esch (L, 0-1) 4.2 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 3 K; RHP Mike Dimock, 1.1 IP, 6 H, 6 ER. 

Prospect Watch: El Paso lost the rubber game in Reno, as Chihuahuas’ pitching surrendered five home runs in the loss ... RHP Jake Esch made his first start for El Paso and was the losing pitcher. Esch, whom San Diego acquired off waivers from Florida on March 31, couldn’t complete five innings of work. He allowed seven hits, including a homer but he didn’t allow a walk. Esch, 27, walked the only two hitters he faced in a brief stint with the big club last week ... Second baseman Carlos Asuaje had his first multi-hit game since opening night in Monday’s loss. Last year’s PCL Rookie of the Year is hitting just .189/.268/.270 in the first two weeks of April ... In 2015, RHP Mike Dimock looked like a guy who was close to being ready for the big leagues. The Padres gave him a spot in the Arizona Fall League after he had a 2.10 ERA in 60 innings between El Paso and San Antonio. Dimock was subsequently suspended for 50 games for testing positive for a drug of abuse (his second such offense). Dimock, 27, struggled in 2016 and was a recent addition to the El Paso roster. The former Wake Forest hurler was knocked around Monday, allowing six earned runs, including two homers in 1.1 innings of work. Dimock has allowed seven earned runs in 4.1 innings for the Chihuahuas to start the season ... One interesting tidbit from Monday’s game -- El Paso catcher Rocky Gale pitched, recording two outs, including a strikeout. Gale was also the only El Paso pitcher who did not surrender a home run. 

Arkansas Travelers 3, Missions 1

Key Statistics: DH Nick Schulz, 2-for-4, HR (3), RS, RBI; RF Franmil Reyes, 2-for-4; RHP Cesar Vargas (L, 0-2) 5.1 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K; RHP Rafael De Paula, 1.2 IP, H, 2 K. 

Prospect Watch: DH Nick Schulz supplied all of San Antonio’s offense with a solo homer in the fourth inning. Schulz, an undrafted free agent signed back in 2014, is tied for the Texas League lead with three homers. The former San Jose Spartan is hitting .333/.455/.694 in 11 games for the Missions in 2017. His 1.149 OPS leads the Texas League ... RHP Cesar Vargas cruised through five innings, before running into trouble in the sixth. Vargas allowed back-to-back doubles to start the sixth and was chased with another double a few batters later. On a positive note, Vargas allowed just one hit through his first five frames. The former Yankee farmhand threw 88 pitches and after being designated for assignment a few weeks ago, he may have finally hit a point where he is stretched out fully. He still represents one of the better depth options San Diego has in the upper minors. 

Inland Empire 66’ers 7, Storm 3

Key Statistics: C Austin Allen, 2-for-4, 2 2B, RBI; SS Javier Guerra, 1-for-4, HR (1), RS, 2 RBI; LHP Eric Lauer, 6 IP, 3 H, R (unearned), BB, 6 K; LHP Jose Castillo, (L, 0-1) 1.1 IP, H, 2 ER, BB; RHP Jose Ruiz, 0 IP, 4 H, 4 ER, BB. 

Prospect Watch: The Storm dropped their fifth straight, as they allowed six runs in the eighth inning ... LHP Eric Lauer bounced back from a subpar start and pitched quite well for the Storm. The former first-rounder allowed just one unearned run in six innings while striking out six and walking one. Lauer needed only 81 pitches to get through six innings. The lefty has struck out 13 batters in 9.2 innings thus far in 2017 ... SS Javier Guerra hit his first homer of 2017 -- an inside-the-park shot that hit the top of the wall in right. It was Guerra’s only hit on the night and he also struck out twice. It is still encouraging to see Guerra flash some of the power that had him at the top of many Padres’ prospect lists last season. Despite the big hit tonight, Guerra is second in the Cal League with 19 strikeouts in 2017 (Storm teammate Michael Gettys leads the circuit with 22) and is hitting just .140/.196/.256 in 11 games for Lake Elsinore ... Christian Bethancourt has garnered quite a bit of attention with his conversion to pitcher this season but former catcher Jose Ruiz is also making the transition to the mound. Ruiz, whom the organization signed way back in 2011 out of Venezuela, allowed the first four earned runs of his career, without recording an out. While Monday’s meltdown brought Ruiz’s ERA to 12, he had three scoreless innings under his belt in the Cal League. The righty can hit 99 mph with his fastball and the organization gave him a coveted spot on the 40-man roster last off-season. 

West Michigan Whitecaps 3, TinCaps 2 (13 innings)

Key Statistics: 2B Reinaldo Ilarraza, 2-for-6, 2B; RF Jorge Oña, 2-for-6; 1B G.K. Young, 3-for-4, HR (1), RBI, BB; LHP Will Headean, 5 IP, 5 H, ER, 2 BB, 7 K; RHP David Bednar, 2 IP, BB, 2 K; RHP Wilmer Torres (L, 0-2). 

Prospect Watch: The TinCaps had a 2-1 lead for most of the game before allowing a run in the ninth and another in extra innings for the hard-luck loss ... First baseman G.K. Young had his best day as a professional, as the former Coastal Carolina star had three hits, including his first homer of the year. Young, a 31st-rounder last year, led the Dust Devils with four homers in his pro debut, to go with the 17 he hit for Coastal Carolina, leading them to a national championship last season. Young, at 6’1, is on the small side for a first baseman but he does have intriguing pop and should be a name to watch as the weather gets warmer in the Midwest ... LHP Will Headean had a second consecutive solid outing and was in line for the victory before the Whitecaps’ rally. Headean, 23, allowed just one earned run in his five innings of work while striking out seven. Headean has a 2.45 ERA through two starts but has not earned a decision in either outing. 

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Full box scores for the night are available from MiLB.

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