Triple-A: Albuquerque Isotopes (45-55)
W: Blackburn (5-3, 3.84); L: Gonzalez, N (3-3, 2.40)
Jon Gray had a solid but unspectacular start, working five innings, striking out five, walking three, and allowing eight hits. But he was able to limit damage to just two runs allowed. Gray has a flashy 12.39 K/9 in his last eight starts, and his 4.13 ERA in that stretch is pretty solid for anyone working in a league like the PCL, but his 1.60 WHIP and the fact that he's barely making it through five innings per start means that the voices within the organization that are against his immediate promotion still have things to point to.
After going 2-4 with a double, Trevor Story seems to be in the middle of the best season of his professional career. Not only is Story's combined wRC+ better between Triple and Double-A than his second best Double and High-A effort last year, but he would need to strike out in 56 of his next 66 plate appearances to match last year's strikeout totals. There are still concerns with Story, but a prospect who gets better as he climbs the organizational ladder ought to be encouraging to anyone.
Double-A: New Britain Rock Cats (46-52)
Reading 6, New Britain 3
W: Murray (5-1, 2.41); L: Broyles (0-3, 3.20); SV: Shackleford (22)
The recently promoted Harrison Musgrave and Jordan Patterson can't be blamed for this loss. Musgrave pitched five innings and allowed two runs, walking none and striking out three. Patterson went 0-3 with a walk in his first game in AA but has collected two hits in each of the three games since, with four of his six hits going for extra bases.
When a player like Patterson, who lacks the prospect credentials of a David Dahl, emerges, prospectors rely on their own system for bracketing that prospect's future value. For my own system, I look for a prospect's ability to adjust to the next level of competition, whether their walk and strikeout rates fall apart or if their isolated power tanks. All of those things are so far so good in Patterson's small sample in Double-A.
High-A: Modesto Nuts (51-46)
Modesto 4, Visalia 0
W: Senzatela (7-5, 2.40); L: Banda (6-8, 3.69)
When this season started, I expected some Cal league breakouts on the PuRP laden Modesto teams, and while their have been many fine performances, none have been better than Antonio Senzetela, who turned in another stellar performance. He allowed no runs on five hits striking out seven in eight innings of work. Senzatela dropped his ERA to 2.40 to go with a strikeout to walk ratio over four.
Supporting the fine pitching performance was a 3-4 night from Dillon Thomas, who has been displaying the talent that made him a fourth round pick out of high school. He's hit .416/.451/.662 in the second half for Modesto
Single-A: Asheville Tourists (49-48)
Hickory 7, Asheville 4
W: Dian (1-0, 0.00); L: McCrummen (4-3, 4.00)
Dom Nunez has flipped the switch in a big way. He added to his .366/.489/.732 second half line with another two hit night.
Taking the mound for Asheville was Ryan Castellani, who was making his 19th start in full season ball depite being six months younger than, for example, recent high school draftee Hector Moreta. Castellani has been pitching in a league full of hitters four to five years older than him and working on a strict pitch count. The most pitches he's thrown in any start has been 82. The 19 year old needed just 73 pitches to get through five innings last night, allowing two runs on six hits, striking out five and walking none. When you think of the wealth of young pitching in the system don't forget to include Castellani. He's earned it.
Short Season-A: Boise Hawks (12-24)
Hillsboro 3, Boise 2
W: Mejia (3-3, 5.60); L: Sawyer (2-2, 3.57); SV: Burr (2)
Starter Logan Sawyer got hit early as Boise fell behind three runs. Despite a couple of late rally attempts, including an RBI double that scored Carlos Herrera in the eighth from Kevin Padlo, the Hawks fell short.
Rookie: Grand Junction Rockies (20-15)
Grand Junction 5, Ogden 0
W: Zimmerman (2-0, 4.00); L: Sborz (0-1, 4.50)
Shutouts in the Pioneer League are rare, so when they are built upon the foundation laid come by last year's top pick Kyle Freeland, then all the better. Freeland worked three strong innings, striking out three and allowing his only baserunner on a first inning walk. Recent high school draftee Michael Zimmerman added two shutout innings of his own.
The GJ Rockies were able to push across five runs on eight hits, with the only extra base hit coming from Colorado native Cole Anderson. With two of the runs being scored by second round pick Tyler Nevin, it was a stellar night for the 2015 draft.
Dominican Summer League: DSL Rockies (20-27)
DSL Rockies 11, DSL Giants 7
W: Requena, A (2-4, 4.44); L: Cabrera, S (3-2, 3.00)
The DSL Rockies pushed across 11 runs without hitting a home run. In fact, only the two doubles went for extra bases. Good performances from Hidekel Gonzalez, who has hit .318/.361/.400 while splitting his time between first base and catcher. Frankin Garcia ,who raised his line to .289/.339/.351, has split his time between second base, third base, and shortstop. Shortstop Yeremi Rosario collected his third multi-hit game in his last five tries after collecting one in his first 26.
Triple-A Albuquerque: Boone Whiting
Double-A New Britain: Shane Carle
High-A Modesto: Alex Balog
Single-A Asheville: Grahamm Wiest
Short Season-A Boise: Javier Polacios
Rookie Grand Junction: Mike Nikorak