In the final month of the season, which pitchers stepped up to close the season strong for their respective minor league clubs? Find out inside!
Toledo – Virgil Vasquez (RHSP)
There is little doubt it's been a rocky season for Vasquez, but a stellar 6-1 final month moved him to a .500 record for the season at 12-12. In over 47 innings in August and September, Virgil allowed only 42 hits and 16 walks, to post a 1.22 WHIP. That performance backed a 3.40 ERA that lowered his season mark to 4.81; certainly not what he or the organization had in mind, but someplace to build from heading to 2009. The award is Vasquez's second of the season, and the seventh of his career.
Runner-Up: Jeremy Johnson (RHP)
Erie – Guillermo Moscoso (RHSP)
A month removed from taking home the July award at Lakeland, Moscoso helped lead a strong late season charge at Erie. Though the squad didn't make the playoffs, Guillermo did his part with a 3-1 record in six starts. Moscoso struck out 50 batters in just 35 innings, against an amazing eight walks and 24 hits. His 3.12 ERA doesn't tell the complete story of his dominance, but his 0.92 WHIP is clearly indicative of the difficulty he gave Eastern League hitters.
Runner-Up: Luke French (LHSP)
Lakeland – Rick Porcello (RHSP)
There is somehow a growing sentiment that Rick Porcello's debut campaign has been something less than outstanding, though you wouldn't know if from his season totals, let along his final month. In four August starts before being shut down, Porcello picked up two wins with twenty innings of work and walked only four hitters. He posted a 1.80 ERA and 1.30 WHIP, that lowered his season marks to 2.66 and 1.19, respectively. Porcello performed very well as a 19-year old in High-A ball, and he saved his best performance for the final month of the season.
Runner-Up: Zach Simons (RHRP)
West Michigan – Andrew Hess (RHP)
Often over-shadowed by a few other pitchers on the West Michigan roster, Andrew Hess finally gets his due after a wonderful August. Hess made seven appearances, including two starts, picking up one win and a save. In 27 2/3 innings, Andrew allowed just 24 hits, and seven walks, while keeping every ball in play in the yard. He finished the month with a 1.63 ERA and 1.12 WHIP, as he helped propel the ‘Caps to the playoffs.
Runner-Up: Jon Kibler (LHSP)
Oneonta – Mark Sorensen (RHSP)
It took a little while to get going, but Sorensen ended up improving his performance in every month of his professional debut. By the time August rolled around, Mark had gotten things going in the right direction by posting a spectacular 1.95 ERA and 2-1 record in six games on the hill. In 28 innings, Sorensen struck out 21 hitters and walked only six.
Runner-Up: Trevor Feeney (RHSP)
GCL Tigers – Jade Todd (LHP)
After getting roughed up in his first extended exposure to pro hitters in July, Jade Todd came back with a vengeance in August. With an undefeated 2-0 record in five games, Todd yielded only 11 hits in 23 innings of work, while impressively striking out 28. For the month, Jade allowed only one earned run, creating a 0.39 ERA and 0.87 WHIP. If this type of performance is a harbinger of things to come in 2009, then start paying attention to Jade Todd.
Runner-Up: Brayan Villareal (RHP)
DSL Tigers – Marcos Nunez (RHP)
For the second straight month, Marcos Nunez takes home the DSL award, and as he closed out his season, he completed a string of months where he significant improved in every major category, in every single month. His ERA dropped from 3.60 in June, to 1.50 in July, and finally 0.69 in August. His WHIP started at 1.65, before falling to 0.87, then 0.69. In addition, his hits and walks dropped every month, and his strikeouts improved. Nunez's improvement throughout the season, could lead to a promotion stateside in 2009.
Runner-Up: Gabriel Herrera (RHRP)