Padres Prospect Report: July 13, 2009

Chad Huffman – homer king. Things were so bad in San Antonio that Anthony Contreras was pitchng. Aaron Breit pitches extremely well but takes a loss. Allan Dykstra goes yard and likes day games more than night. Eugene sweeps behind Chadd Hartman, Vince Belnome, Nate Freiman and Chris Fetter. Jon Berger dominates and Cody Decker goes deep again. The DSL Padres are swept.

Portland (42-49) had a scheduled day off

Chad Huffman won the Triple-A home run derby on Monday. He hammered five balls out of the yard of his home park in the final round. He hit 15 total during the three-round competition.

San Antonio (8-9, 47-40) lost 14-1 to Tulsa (Rockies)

After stranding an inherited runner in his first one-third of an inning, Scott Rice was on the hook for four runs on five hits and a walk in the next frame – giving up a double and two-run homer among the hits. He would go 2.1 innings, giving up six hits and walking two. Rice had not allowed an earned run in his previous 8.1 innings, giving up three hits over that span. The southpaw has allowed runs in six of his 14 outings with the Missions.

Anthony Contreras was pressed into service to protect the arms in a 10-1 game. The infielder allowed three runs on three hits and a walk in his inning of work. It is the second time this year he has been asked to throw off the mound. The last time, he tossed scoreless ball – giving up a hit and a walk in a June 28 outing versus Midland. Contreras is hitting .248 on the season with 14 RBI through 44 games. He has a .353 average with runners in scoring position.

Lake Elsinore (9-10, 48-41) lost 2-1 to Rancho Cucamonga (Angels)

Aaron Breit gave up back-to-back homers in the second inning – both solo homers – the only runs he would allow across 5.2 innings. The right-hander allowed just three hits and walked one while striking out nine in the loss – his fourth. Breit has posted a 3.07 ERA in three starts – the same ERA he had in 27 relief appearances. Breit came into the game with a 6.08 ERA during day games, giving up nine earned in 13.1 innings before lowering that to 5.21.

Brad Chalk had three hits in four trips, scoring the lone Storm run. The leadoff hitter swiped his 27th base while also getting caught stealing for the fourth time. He has been caught stealing twice in his last two games. The left-handed hitter has a nine-game hitting streak with three multi-hit games in his last four. He is 15-for-37 over the life of the streak with eight runs scored.

Fort Wayne (15-3, 60-28) lost 5-2 to Peoria (Cubs)

Allan Dykstra hit his sixth homer of the season, a two-run shot with two outs in the opening frame. It was his lone hit of the afternoon affair. The first baseman is hitting .232 during day games with three homers and 17 RBI in 69 at-bats. In night games, the Wake Forest alumnus is hitting .197 with three homers and 19 RBI in 188 at-bats. He is 6-for-35 over his last 11 games – a .171 average.

Erik Davis dropped to 8-4, giving up five runs on six hits and three walks across five innings while striking out five. He did record a pair of double play grounders – the second time this year he has accomplished the feat. It is just the second time in nine starts that he has allowed more than three runs and the third time he has issued three or more free passes. The opposition is hitting .333 off him with runners in scoring position.

Eugene (11-13) won game one 7-5 over Spokane, won game two 5-0

Matt Jackson gave up a solo homer on a 2-2 pitch with two outs in the top of the first – breaking a string of 16 scoreless innings to open the season. The right-hander surrendered four runs on six hits and a walk – topping the five hits he had surrendered in his first five outings. Jackson also twisted his knee trying to pick up a bunt down the third base line but reported that he was fine.

"I tried to do too much today," Jackson said. "Luckily, we swung the bat well and the guys picked me up today. It was one of those days.

"I threw a curveball today – it was the first time I had thrown the curveball. I tried to do too much and need to stay within myself."

Chadd Hartman went a perfect 2-for-2 with a sacrifice fly – just the third sac fly Eugene has managed all season, and the outfielder has two of them. He had two RBI and scored a run. Hartman has three multi-hit games through his first seven in Eugene and has reached base in six straight games with nine hits in 20 at-bats to go along with two walks.

"At 2-0, I was looking for a pitch middle in," Hartman said of his RBI double. "I got the head out and am not really trying to do too much with the pitch. Put good swings on the ball.

"I was looking for a pitch I could drive and bare down and battle," Hartman said of his first hit, an infield single.

"We were kind of excited about a doubleheader with a day off tomorrow," outfielder Chadd Hartman said.

Vince Belnome had two hits, including his sixth double, and scored a pair of runs in game one. He also made a terrific barehanded play on a slow roller to his second base spot in the ninth. Belnome has been on base in 22 straight games – the top mark in the Northwest League. He sports a .449 on-base percentage and his 22 runs scored leads the circuit. A game two walk in the fourth pushed his on base streak to 23, as he was hit by a pitch and scored a game two run.

"I was trying to get to the ball and get rid of it as quick as I could," Belnome said of the defensive play. I couldn't have done it with the glove. "I felt really good in the box today. I saw a couple of pitches that I wanted to hit rather than a pitcher's pitch.

Chris Fetter delivered five scoreless frames in game two, giving up four hits and a walk while striking out a career-high seven. The right-hander has gone at least five innings while giving up two runs or less in four straight. Fetter has fanned 9.5 batters per nine innings pitched and is tied for fifth in the Northwest League with 24 strikeouts.

"Unbelievable," Freiman said of his teammates effort. "His first win – the back end of the doubleheader. It is an unbelievable amount of momentum."

"It was an outing where I had to fight a little bit and throw more pitches," Fetter said. "I was leaving the ball higher than I usually do and was getting myself in a little bit of trouble.

"I threw a little more off-speed. We mixed in a lot more changeups and off-speed. It worked to our advantage keeping them off-balance."

Nate Freiman extended his hitting streak to 17 games with an RBI double in the bottom of the fourth to put Eugene up 1-0. Freiman, who didn't play in game one, had two hits and drew a walk to complete a perfect night. The first baseman also scored a run. Freiman leads the Northwest League with his 23 RBI. Freiman is hitting .388 over his 17-game streak with eight extra base hits.

"I got a slider that was up in the zone and put a good swing on it," Freiman said. "Vinnie made a great read to score from first."

"he really got the pressure off me," Fetter said of Freiman's double. "That one run got the pressure off and then the last inning to get a few hits put together – we are on a roll and hopefully we can keep it going."

"It took me some time to get comfortable with the wood bat and feel comfortable in this league," Freiman said. "Over the last few weeks I have been listening really closely to what Rid (manager Greg Riddoch) and EP (hitting coach Eric Peyton) and now Grady Fuson and Tom Gamboa have been saying about hitting. Trust in their philosophy and I am getting more comfortable as a result.

"The other nice thing is we are starting to win games. We are closing in on .500 after a tough start."

AZL Padres (10-9) won 8-2 over AZL Dodgers

Jon Berger went seven strong innings – the lone blemish was a solo homer. He yielded three hits, did not walk a batter and struck out a career-high 10 while recording eight ground ball outs. The right-hander has fanned an Arizona Rookie League leading 33 this season while leading the circuit with 27 innings pitched. Berger has allowed two runs or less in four of his five starts.

Cody Decker went yard for the third straight game, hitting a two-run blast with nobody out in the second. The first baseman had three hits on the day and scored a pair of runs. Decker has four homers in his last three games and has plated seven over that span. His six homers lead the Arizona Rookie League. Decker has scored a run in eight straight games, touching home 14 times over that span.

Gabe DeHoyos made a rehab appearance for the AZL Padres, giving up an unearned run on two hits across two-thirds of an inning, striking out one. The right-hander had given up just one run on 10 hits across 16 innings with Triple-A Portland prior to going down to injury. He last pitched on May 5. DeHoyos had walked nine batters this year but has held righties to a .158 average.

Jonathan Galvez has been on base in 18 straight after going 2-for-4 with two RBI.

DSL Padres (14-22) lost 4-1 in game one to DSL Tigers, lost 5-3 in game two

Manager Evaristo Lantigua was flown to the All-Star Game on Sunday night as the batting practice pitcher for Nelson Cruz. Lantigua was his manager when he was in the Dominican and is someone he works with in the offseason. Cruz made it to the final round, losing 6-5 to Prince Fielder.

Juan Herrera suffered his second loss of the season, giving up two runs on six hits and a walk while also hitting a batter in 4.2 innings of game one. The right-hander struck out five and recorded five ground ball outs. Herrera has seen the leadoff man of an inning reach base at a .429 clip and left-handed hitters are batting .302 off him. Herrera has walked at least one batter in every game, issuing 4.28 free passes per nine innings pitched.

Ariel Familia 2-for-3 with a run scored. The outfielder swiped his second base of the year but was also caught for the third time. Familia recorded a pair of outfield assists – his first two of the season – by gunning down a runner at second base in the second and another runner at third base an inning later. Familia has recorded three multi-hit games in his last four with six runs scored and five RBI over that span.

The DSL Padres had more errors than hits during game two play. They managed one Alvaro Aristy knock while making three errors – including one from the shortstop – his 11th of the year. The DSL Padres came into the game tied for sixth overall in the 34-team circuit with a .952 fielding percentage. They have made 67 errors in 36 games – five total during the doubleheader on Monday.

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