Happy minor league opening day, everyone! We are excited to bring you the first daily farm report of the 2018 season. We won’t stop until September!
All four full-season clubs were in action on Thursday night, with mixed results. El Paso rode a stellar outing by Eric Lauer to a victory, while San Antonio couldn’t muster much offense in a loss. The Storm won behind excellent pitching and a few timely hits, while Fort Wayne’s bullpen imploded late, leading to a tough loss in brutal weather conditions on the road.
Chihuahuas 4, Las Vegas 51’s 2
Key Statistics: CF Travis Jankowski, 3-for-5, 2R; 2B Luis Urias, 1-for-3, RS, 2BB; SS Javy Guerra, 2-for-4, R, HR (1), RBI; LHP Eric Lauer (W, 1-0) 6IP, 5H, 2ER, 2BB, 6K; RHP Kyle Lloyd, IP, 2K; RHP Jonathan Aro IP, K. (S, 1).
Prospect Watch: El Paso gets the win on the road in Sin City, with excellent work from Eric Lauer and the bullpen. … Travis Jankowski had three hits, all singles at the top of the order. Jankowski had a poor 2017 in San Diego and failed to make the roster after a lackluster spring. Jankowski has a track record of tattooing PCL pitching (career .317/.398/.390 in 59 Triple-A games) and his defensive versatility and speed likely make him the first player called to the big leagues, should the Padres need another outfielder. … Luis Urias had a single and a pair of walks in his season debut. Per usual, Urias didn’t strike out and begins the year with more walks than strikeouts. Urias has walked more than he has struck out in all four of his professional seasons. … Shortstop Javy Guerra had a pair of hits, including a homer in the El Paso victory. Guerra struck out twice as well. His strikeout issues are well documented — Guerra has whiffed in 30% of his plate appearances in each of the last two seasons. Guerra does have pop and has shown excellent defensive ability throughout his tenure in the system. … On the mound, LHP Eric Lauer pitched well, earning the victory. The former first-rounder pitched six solid innings, allowing a pair of earned runs on five hits, with two walks and six strikeouts. Lauer threw 97 pitches, 57 of them strikes.
Arkansas Travelers 3, Missions 1
Key Statistics: 1B Josh Naylor, 2-for-4; C Austin Allen, 1-for-2, R, HR (1), RBI; RHP Cal Quantrill, 3.2IP, 2H, ER, 5BB, 4K; LHP Brad Wieck (L, 0-1) IP, 2H, 2ER, BB, 2K.
Prospect Watch: It was a slow night for the Missions, as they managed just three hits in the loss. … One of the hits was a homer off of the bat of Austin Allen. Allen finished fourth in the Cal League a season ago with 22 homers and slugged nearly .500. As we have chronicled, he continues to make strides on the defensive side and his bat could eventually carry him to the Major Leagues. … 1B Josh Naylor had a pair of hits to go with a pair of strikeouts. Naylor will play the outfield a few times a week since first base in San Diego will be occupied for the foreseeable future. … RHP Cal Quantrill tied a career-high with five walks in just 3.2 innings, although he did manage four strikeouts. The top prospect was able to pitch around the walks for the most part but surely the organization will hope for better results for him next time out.
Storm 4, Stockton Ports 0
Key Statistics: RF Edward Olivares, 2-for-3, 2B, 2BB, RBI; 2B Eguy Rosario, 2-for-4, (2)2B, 2R, RBI; LF Nate Easley, 2-for-4, RBI; RHP Lake Bachar (W, 1-0) 6IP, 2H, BB, K; RHP Elliot Ashbeck, 2IP, BB, 3K; RHP David Bednar (S, 1) 0.1 IP.
Prospect Watch: The Storm used a nine-hit attack, including five doubles to shutout Stockton on the road. … 18-year-old Eguy Rosario had a big night, swatting two doubles in the Lake Elsinore victory. Rosario had a rough time in Fort Wayne a year ago, posting a wRC+ of 68, while slashing .206/.296/.278, albeit with a 10% walk rate. Clearly, the Padres still believe in Rosario, given the advanced assignment. … Outfielder Edward Olivares made his organizational debut and had two hits and drew two walks. The 22-year-old outfielder had a breakout year in the Toronto organization, hitting 17 homers in the Midwest League. He, of course, was the main piece the Padres received in the Yangervis Solarte deal. … RHP Lake Bachar had one of his best outings as a pro, pitching six shutout innings to earn the victory. The former fifth-rounder battled injuries last season before having a big season in the Australian Baseball League this winter. He could get overlooked in a very talented Storm rotation but he has displayed outstanding command throughout his time in the system.
Lake County Captains 3, TinCaps 2
Key Statistics: CF Jeisson Rosario, 2-for-4, RS; 2B Esteury Ruiz, 1-for-4, 2B; 3B Justin Lopez, 2-for-4; LHP Nick Margevicius, 5.2 IP, H, 9K; RHP Joe Galindo (L, 0-1) 0.1IP, 2ER, 3BB.
Prospect Watch: The treacherous weather in the Midwest League reared its ugly head, as the game-time temperature was 36 degrees. … LHP Nick Margevicius was dominant in his TinCaps debut, allowing just one hit while striking out nine batters without a walk. The seventh-rounder last June has a 1.17 career ERA in 53.2 innings with eight walks and 71 strikeouts. He is not a name that popped up on any of our top-30’s but he will certainly be a guy to watch in Fort Wayne in 2018. … Jeisson Rosario led off and stroked a pair of singles in the loss. Rosario has a nice, compact swing from the left side, although he doesn’t generate a ton of loft. He does possess excellent bat-to-ball skills and should be an above-average defender in center. … After Margevicius left with two outs in the sixth inning, the Fort Wayne bullpen walked 8 batters, including four from LHP Ben Sheckler, RHP Joe Galindo, and RHP Jordan Guerrero.