Last night, Shael Mendoza and Pedro Gonzalez tallied six of Grand Junction’s 12 hits. With Ryan Vilade taking most of the headlines for the Pioneer League Rockies, it’s easy to miss Mendoza and Gonzalez but both have had exciting seasons so far and both deserve a second look.
Mendoza, the leadoff man for GJ, now leads the team in batting average at .372. He leads the team by eleven in hits with 51 and stolen bases with 20. Mendoza’s been the perfect leadoff hitter for the Rockies and shows some great talent in his first professional season in the United States.
Gonzalez, the team leader in triples, has improved greatly in his second stint in Grand Junction. Improving his hitting and patience at the plate, Gonzalez has shown a clear improvement in his age 19 season. The young Dominican has already nearly equaled his walk total from last season as well as his hits and stolen base totals from a year ago. In 80 fewer at-bats, Gonzalez has only 12 fewer hits than last year and one fewer walk.
The two combined at the top of the order have created a formidable top of the lineup in Grand Junction. Though the Pioneer League is known for it’s friendly hitting, the 1-4 of Mendoza, Gonzalez, Vilade, and Spangenberger have been an exciting revelation for any fans following the lower minor leagues.
The Rockies did lose the game to Ogden on Sunday night. Other news and notes from the affiliates are below:
Noel Cuevas: 1-for-4, RBI
Ryan Carpenter: 6 IP, 3 R (2 ER), 6 K
Brendan Rodgers (No. 1 PuRP): 1-for-5, R
Parker French: 6 IP, 8 R, 3 K
Correlle Prime: 2-for-4, HR
Sam Hilliard (No. 28 PuRP): 3-for-5, HR
Jesus Tinoco: 6 IP, 5 R, 3 K
Tyler Nevin: 1-for-3, HR
Riley Pint: 4 1⁄3 IP, 4 K, 4 R (2 ER)
J.B. Moss: 4-for-5
Ethan Westphal: 1 IP, H, 0 R
Shael Mendoza: 3-for-4, 4 R
Pedro Gonzalez: 3-for-5, 2 RBI
Ryan Vilade: 1-for-2, RBI, 2 BB
Triple-A Albuquerque: Zach Jemiola (4-2, 6.80 ERA) vs. Iowa
Single-A Advanced Lancaster: TBD vs. Lake Elsinore
Single-A Asheville: Breiling Eusebio (2-1, 4.64 ERA)
Dominican Summer League: TBD vs. DSL Nationals