Josh Alley sets bar high; John Madden solid closer

We have a correction in Arizona. Ronnie Merrill stays hot in Portland. George Kottaras hits one out in Mobile and has been on base often of late. Andy Ashby was on the hill for the Storm. Josh Alley sets the bar high at 25. John Madden has been a successful closer. Josh Thomas-Dotson hasn't had an easy time in Rookie ball.

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In our August 19th report, it was reported to us that Roger Deago pitched for the Arizona Rookie League Padres. That was and is not true and we have submitted a report to the offices of Minor League Baseball.

It was Richie Daigle (sounds like Deago?) who went five and scattered two hits while walking one and striking out four. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Portland lost 5-3

Jon Knott hit his 31st double of the year to tie the Portland franchise record since beginning back play in 2000. He has already set a franchise record for at bats with 477 to date.

Ronnie Merrill went 2-for-5 in his Portland debut with a double and three K's. The shortstop is 20-for-62 over his last 19 games, 18 coming with Mobile, a .323 batting average. Merrill had whiffed just three times in the last 11 games coming into the game.

Josh Barfield extended his hitting streak to nine but it was Dustin Delucchi who moved his streak to eight by going 3-for-4 with a walk. He is 11-for-26 over the streak to raise his average to .287 on the year and .310 since joining Portland with an on base percentage of .444. The leadoff man also stole a base, his 11th of the year in Pacific Coast League play.

Mobile won 2-1

Jose Oyervidez went six, giving up one run on five hits and five walks while striking out eight. It is the 12th time in 25 starts that he has given up two runs or less. His 76 walks allowed, however, on the year are tied for third throughout all the minors. Hard to believe his WHIP is only 1.42 for the year. He also picked off a runner on Monday.

George Kottaras hit his second homer since joining Mobile and went 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Kottaras has reached base in all but three of his 20 Mobile games. The catcher is 10-for-29 over his last nine games with seven walks for an on base percentage of .472. For the year he has an OBP of .376. He has knocked in seven over the past eight games.

The BayBears won their second straight, after a tiring weekend with six games played against Birmingham. "I think the guys really acted professionally and handled themselves well for the series against Birmingham," said BayBears Manager Gary Jones. "I had never seen anything like that in my years of professional baseball."

Lake Elsinore won 6-5

Andy Ashby was on the hill for the Storm on Monday. He gave up one unearned run on three hits in three innings of work in his first competitive action of the year. Ashby has had four rounds of surgery on his elbow with the last coming in October of 2004. The right-hander threw 60 pitches in last time out and the Padres have been encouraged by his performances.

Juan Ciriaco committed three errors on Monday, the most he has had in one game this year. Ciriaco leads the team with 40 errors and has five multi-error games. Two of his errors led to two unearned runs in the contest.

Fort Wayne won 3-0

Brandon Kintzler went one scoreless inning on Monday and has gone eight straight appearances without allowing an earned run, a span of 7.2 innings. In 14 outings with Fort Wayne he is holding the opposition to a .219 average against and has held them to five hits in 24 at bats with RISP. He has also yet to allow an inherited runner to score.

Josh Alley went 1-for-3 with a walk and has reached base in 25 straight games. While his average sits at .246, his on base percentage is .395 thanks to 31 walks in 35 games compared to just 17 whiffs.

"If I think my batting average is down as long as I keep my on base percentage where it needs to be and letting the bigger guys drive me in I am fine," Alley said.

Eugene won 5-3

John Madden converted his fourth straight save opportunity and has saved three straight games since taking over as the Ems closer. Madden has whiffed seven of the 11 batters he has faced over that time, allowing just a walk in 3.1 innings. Madden has struck out the side three different times this year and has 42 K's in 33.1 innings. He has given up runs in three of his last 14 appearances and in 12 of 32 on the year.

Seth Johnston went 1-for-3 to lengthen his hitting streak to seven games. He is 9-for-24 over the streak, raising his average from .219 to .250. He added an RBI, his second since knocking in eight on August 10. Johnston is also hitting .360 with RISP on the season.

"You can't really try and hit with runners on base you just have to try to pick up the ball as soon as you can and react to the ball," said Johnston.

AZL Padres lost 11-4 on Sunday

Cesar Rojas surrendered four runs, three earned, on five hits and three walks in four innings. In ten starts, Rojas has failed to make it past the fourth six times. He sports a 7.65 ERA as a starter and has given up 19 runs over his last 12.1 innings. The opposition has hit .338 off him this month and .354 with RISP on the year.

Julio Sanchez allowed two runs on four hits and a walk over two innings of work. The righty has given up runs in five of his last six appearances and has a 5.65 ERA during the month of August. He has also walked more batters, 11, than he has struck out this month, 10, and has tossed six wild pitches to give him eight on the year in 34.1 innings of work. After holding the opposition to a sub .200 average through June and July, they are batting .283 off him in August.

Josh Thomas-Dotson has seen action in 17 games with the Peoria squad but has seen his average drop steadily as the year progresses. He went 0-for-1 in his only at bat on Sunday and is five for his last 28, a .178 average. He has a 14-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio, whiffing 28 times in 49 at bats, or 57 percent of the time.

Have a question about a prospect in the San Diego Padres' system. Send Denis an email at Some questions will be forwarded and answered on air during weekly segment on the flagship station for San Diego Padres' baseball, The Mighty 1090. The show airs each Friday at 10:35 AM PST with Brian Wilson and Ernie Martinez.

Also, the Prospect Power Rankings will be coming on Wednesday. Sorry for the delay!

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