Triple-A: Albuquerque Isotopes (11-18)
Sacramento 3, Albuquerque 1
W: Blach (3-2, 3.22); L: Bettis (2-2, 3.97); SV: Broadway (3)
On a night where Sacramento sent Hunter Pence, Ronny Cedeno, Travis Ishikawa and John Bowker to the plate, Chad Bettis' six inning, three run, five strikeout, no walk effort was pretty decent. Unfortunately, the offense was unable to string together enough hits to drive three across the plate. The Isotopes did get get multi hit games from Matt McBride, Roger Bernadina and Angelys Nina, with McBride collecting the only extra base hit.
Double-A: New Britain Rock Cats (20-7)
New Britain 5, Portland 1
W: Hernandez, C (1-0, 4.24); L: Diaz, L (0-3, 5.61); SV: Ortega, J (1)
Nuclear twins Tom Murphy and Trevor Story went a combined 1-8 last night. But now worries, as the unstoppable Rock Cats decided to take this one home behind great pitching and timely hitting. On the pitching side, Carlos Hernandez turned in his best performance of the year, going 6.2 innings while giving up just one unearned run on seven hits and no walks. He struck out ten. Jose Ortega worked a scoreless 2.1 innings save, lowering his ERA to 1.38.
For the hitters, David Dahl's 1-3 night extended his hitting streak to five games. He ended up scoring three runs and stealing two bases. Wil Swanner collected two of New Britain's six hits, both doubles, to raise his season line to .283/.413/.483. Swanner has lost his prospect luster but his line in Double-A so far is respectable enough to give him more than just a glance on your mid-season lists.
Class A Advanced: Modesto Nuts (15-14)
Modesto 5, Inland Empire 3
W: Jiminian (2-3, 5.63); L: Cooney (1-2, 5.28)
Johendi Jiminian had a second straight strong start, allowing one run over 5.2 innings while striking out four. The offense had a nice night on the back of multi hit games by top PuRPs Raimel Tapia, who is slashing a pretty .330/.362/.539, and Ryan Mcmahon, whose .292/.419/.469 slash line is also attractive. Those two are a real study in the different ways that a hitter can be valuable: Tapia relies on his ability to barrel up just about anything, and McMahon works a more patient approach, but both have good power and are showing that their aggressive prospect rankings by different publications were not premature.
Class A: Asheville Tourists (12-16)
Asheville 5, Delmarva 1
W: Howard (1-3, 5.48); L: Gonzalez, B (1-1, 5.60)
Just like the Rock Cats, the Tourists scored five runs on just six hits. But as it turned out, they wouldn't need all those runs. On Thursday, Delmarva shut out the Tourists and held the squad to just two hits. Sam Howard of the Tourists responded with an excellent pitching effort of his own on Friday. Howard worked seven innings, giving up one run on those two hits, while striking out five and walking none. Howard is a name I hear all the time as a guy who could rise quickly in prospect rankings despite his uneven performance so far.
When a team scores five runs on six singles, as the Tourists did yesterday, it makes you wonder how that happened. The simple answer is speed. Asheville is a crazy fast team. If we paced the whole team out to 600 plate appearances, there would be five players with at least 30 stolen bases, and center fielder Wes Rogers would end up with 100. First base is scoring position with players as fast as Rogers.
Triple-A Albuquerque: Jon Gray
Double-A New Britain: Yohan Flande
High-A Modesto: Harrison Musgrave
Single-A Asheville: Zach Jemiola