TAMPA, FL - Both Alex Rodriguez and Carlos Beltran were at the minor league complex on Sunday to get some extra at-bats but yet it was the prospects, most notably Jake Cave, who once again stood out.
Outfielder Jake Cave went a perfect 3-3 in Trenton's 9-3 victory over the Blue Jays on Sunday and was lacing the ball all over the field. He singled sharply in the very first Trenton at-bat and later scored a run. He then singled sharply to right field in his second at-bat before scoring another run. He rounded out his day driving in a run with a hard single up the middle to centerfield, scoring Zach Wilson [2-2, 2 runs, 2B]. He has been absolutely locked in offensively.
Scranton first baseman Kyle Roller had the big hit on either field on Sunday, slamming a titanic two-run home run over the right-ceneterfield wall in a 2-4 afternoon [one strikeout]. It wasn't enough, however, as Scranton got pounded 13-8 in a loss.
Scranton Starting Lineup: Taylor Dugas, Carlos Beltran, Danny Oh, Rob Segedin, Kyle Roller, Ben Gamel, Thairo Estrada, Hoy Jun Park, Wes Wilson, and Renzo Martini.
Trenton Starting Lineup: Jake Cave, Cito Culver, Alex Rodriguez, Greg Bird, Eric Jagielo, Gary Sanchez, Mason Williams, Jose Rosario, Zach Wilson, and Jesus Aparicio.
Cave isn't the only Trenton batter blistering hot these days. First baseman Greg Bird continues to swing a very hot bat of his own. He went 1-2 with three RBIs and a run scored in Trenton's victory. He drove home a run in the first inning to score Cave with an RBI ground out and later drove home Cave [again] and Cito Culver [1-2, RBI, run] with a frozen rope single to left-centerfield. The only blemish on his afternoon was going down swinging in his third and final plate appearance. Defensively he made a great play on a somewhat deep foul ball down the right field line, not only ranging to catch it but then gunning down a runner at the plate who was trying to tag up from third base.
Scranton outfielder Danny Oh had himself an afternoon, going 3-4 with two runs scored, an RBI, and a strikeout. Perhaps benefiting from hitting behind Beltran, like Cave he was hitting ropes all over the field.
Both Eric Jagielo [1-3, K, RBI] and Gary Sanchez [0-3, RBI] didn't have the greatest results but both squared the ball up well on Sunday. Jagielo laced a hard-ringing RBI single to right field in his first at-bat and later lined out to left field, and Sanchez grounded out sharply all three times he stepped to the plate, one time driving home a run.
As the scores would indicate, there wasn't much in the way of effective pitching on either field on Sunday. Case in point, Scranton pitcher James Pazos. He was sitting 91-94 mph and showing some really good stuff but he had a hard time locating his pitches. He gave up two runs on three hits [one was a solo home run] and hit two batters in his 1.2 innings of work. The stuff was impressive but the command was not.
Both Thairo Estrada and Hoy Jun Park showed a little something in Scranton's loss. Estrada went just 1-4 with a run scored but hit the ball hard all four times he stepped to the plate. Outside of singling sharply on a one-hopper to the centerfielder he lined out sharply to the second baseman and grounded out hard in his other plate appearances. Park went 1-1 with a single to right field and later scored a run, and drew a walk in his second and final plate appearance before stealing second base. Defensively, however, while he made most plays, he did have one miscue where the ball got under his glove on a back-hand play.
Scranton's Ben Gamel [2-4, 2 K's] and Wes Wilson [1-2, BB, K, RBI] each had hits in the loss, and Trenton's Jesus Aparicio [1-1, RBI, BB] chipped in for Trenton.