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Wednesday Pebble Report: Ian Stewart Homers on First AAA Pitch He Sees

Eye On - Eric Young Jr. - AAA UT

Opinions on the younger Young are mixed.  Is he a the next coming of his father?  A burner with AAAA hitting skill?  A utility man without a position?  Everyone hits well in Colorado Springs, but it is worth noting that Young hits the most well.  He punched a double and a single last night, pushing his multi-hit game streak to six, over which time he has hit 14-for-25 with five walks, one strikeout, three doubles and two triples.  His season line now sits at .373/.481/.545 with 15 stolen bases to just one caught stealing, 28 walks to just 23 strikeouts.  And no, it isn't just Colorado Springs' hitting environment.  His road wOBA of .444 is better than his home wOBA.  After making five errors in his first 11 games, he has made just one in his last 20 (though much of that is due to a move to the outfield).  

Should EYJr get the promotion to the big club?  Alfredo Amezaga would be the likely casualty.  There isn't a perfectly logical starting role, which is why he is in AAA, but with the dead weight currently on the bench, it is becoming more and more difficult to deny the likelihood that Young could help the big club in some capacity.

AAA Colorado Springs  L 9-12 (16-24, 3rd, 9.0 GB)

Ian Stewart (2003, 1st round) couldn't hit a lick with the big club, so naturally, he hit a home run on the first pitch he saw since returning to AAA.  He mixed in an intentional walk, strikeout and single, essentially posting the penultimate Stewart/AAA line.  The Sky Sox as a team concluded a 3-5 homestand in which the winning team scored at least 11 runs in each game (shocker, I know).  The bullpen coughed up a 9-5 lead with a 7-run eighth inning.  The central culprit was Matt Daley (2004, undrafted FA), who faced four batters, allowing a two singles, a 3-run double by Kila Ka'aihue and a two run home run.  Matt Daley's ERA is now 6.28.  

#7  PuRP Charlie Blackmon (2008, 2nd round) and Mike Jacobs (2011, MiLB FA) joined Stewart in going yard, while that trio had company in Eric Young Jr. and Josh Fields (2011, MiLB FA) in the multi-hit column.  

AA Tulsa   W 5-4, 10th (18-12, 1st)

#13 PuRP Juan Nicasio (2006, DR FA) is having a terrific amazing dumbfoundingly prodigious season.  He came into last night ranked 5th in strikeouts and 6th in K/BB at 6.38 in all of MiLB.  All he did last night was strike out nine in seven innings, giving him the secondmost strikeouts in all of the minor leagues, behind that other Rockies farmhand (Edwar Cabrera).  Oh yeah, two walks, two singles, two runs.  That's it.  The two runs both scored in one inning with the assist of a walk, balk, stolen base and ground out.  

"Hard to argue he's not the #Rockies' best pitching prospect" - Baseball America's Ben Badler on Juan Nicasio last night.

#2 PuRP Wilin Rosario (2006, DR FA) doubled, singled and drove in two, and Darin Holcomb (2007, 12th round) hit a home run to pace the offense.  The Drillers would literally walk-off on Northwest Arkansas in the 10th inning when Michael Mitchell (2007, 25th round) walked with the bases loaded to score #23 PuRP Ben Paulsen (2009, 3rd round), who had reached base on a strikeout.  As for the #16 PuRP Tim Wheeler (2009, 1st round) watch, the center fielder went 0-for-5 with 3 Ks.


High-A Modesto W 3-2 (19-20, 5th, 6.0 GB)

The Rockies weren't finished beating the Giants yesterday.  After the parent club swept San Francisco, the Nuts took on San Jose and the Giants' top prospect Zack Wheeler.  Modesto's generally weak offense patched together three runs on five hits and five walks through 5.2 IP against the Giants' 2009 1st round pick.  The blows came on an RBI single by #30 PuRP Delta Cleary Jr. (2008, 37th round) and a 2-run pinch-hit knock by Scott Robinson (2006, 30th round).  Parker Frazier (2007, 8th round) got the start but left with two outs in the second inning after getting hit by a line drive.  Reliever Coty Woods (2009, 33rd round) soldiered on for 4.1 scoreless frames for the victory.  Sheng-An Kuo (2007, TW FA) gave up two runs in the ninth but earned his eighth save when he got Chris Dominguez to fly out with the bases loaded to end the game. 


Low-A Asheville Postponed (19-19, 1st)

The weather out east continues to wreak havoc on Rockies' farm teams.  The Tourists will attempt to make up their postponed game with a double header today starting at 3:35 MDT.  #21 PuRP Joshua Slaats will pitch game one.