Ryan Weathers makes his professional debut, Walker Lockett goes seven strong innings, Chris Paddack tosses 5.2 scoreless innings striking out eight – and still, none of them were the top story thanks to Luis Patiño’s five hitless innings for Fort Wayne.
Chihuahuas 9, Colorado Springs Sky Sox 1
Key Stats: RHP Walker Lockett (W, 4-9) 7 IP, 4 H, ER, 2 BB, 7 K; 2B Luis Urias 1-4, 3 R, HBP; C Francisco Meija 0-3, RBI, BB; 1B Allen Craig 5-5, 2B, 2 HR (12), 5 RBI; RF Forrestt Allday 2-3, 2 R, 3B, BB, HBP
Prospect Watch: Entering Wednesday’s game, Walker Lockett had given up 20 earned runs in 27.1 innings over his last five starts. Today, the 24-year-old showed the stuff that earned him big league call-ups earlier this year. Lockett threw 65 of his 98 pitches for strikes, generating nine groundball outs to go along with seven strikeouts – which makes a huge difference at elevation. … Jose Castillo pitched in back-to-back games, likely his last box to check before completing his rehab assignment. While he was wild, throwing 11 strikes and 10 balls, he allowed just one hit and struck out two to close out the game. … First baseman Allen Craig had his first five-hit game this year, and his two home runs raised his OPS to .885 on the season. An emergent star for the Cardinals in 2011-13, he hasn’t posted an OPS over .720 since and managed only .572 and .668 marks the last two years.
Missions 1, Corpus Christi Hooks 0
Key Stats: RHP Chris Paddack (W, 7-2) 5.2 IP, 2 H, 8 K; RHP Miguel Diaz 3.1 IP, 2 H, 2 K; LF Josh Naylor 1-3, BB, SB (3); C Austin Allen 3-4, R
Prospect Watch: When Padres fans hear that the pitching is really good, it often times difficult to put that into context. The Hooks have been the best team in the Texas League, leading the league in most offensive categories including runs, RBI, and batting average. Over the last three games Missions starters – who we ranked nine, 12, and 15 among top Padres prospects coming into the season, tossed a combined 18.2 innings, allowing just 11 hits and two runs while posting a stellar 21:2 strikeout-to-walk ratio. Again, against the best hitting team in the league. As he has most of the season, Chris Paddack outshined them all. He faced just two batters over the minimum as he tossed 85 pitches through 5.2 innings. It was his first Double-A start without walking a batter. He hasn’t issued more than one walk in 32 of 34 career games. Since being promoted to Double-A, Paddack is holding hitters to a .096 average with left-handers managing just two hits in 33 plate appearances. Same-side hitters aren’t much better with five hits in 45 plate appearances.
Lancaster JetHawks 17, Storm 11
Key Stats: LHP Nick Margevicius (L, 2-2) 4 IP, 9 H, 5 ER, 2 BB, 4 K; RHP Carter Capps 2 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 2 K; CF Edward Olivares 4-6, 4 R, 3B, 3 RBI, SB (16); 3B Hudson Potts 3-5, R, RBI, BB; C Luis Torrens 4-5, R, 3 RBI, BB; DH Jorge Oña 2-3, 2B, RBI, BB, 2 HBP
Prospect Watch: To say Lancaster can make Coors Field look like a pitchers park is not an exaggeration. With a game-time temperature of 105 and the wind was blowing out at 22 mph, this wasn’t destined for a 1-0 pitchers duel like in San Antonio. The Storm managed 11 runs on 19 hits and lost. Edward Olivares had a great week at the plate tonight with four hits, four runs, and three RBI. The four hits are the most since April 14th also against Lancaster, while the four runs are a new career high. He’s hit in six of his last seven with four strikeouts, but no walks, in that stretch. … A .266/.342/.488 line for a 19-year-old in High-A hard to scoff at, yet many pundits were panning 3B Hudson Potts, who carried that line through the first half. In the second half, Potts has hit .323/.373/.573 and in his current 12-game hitting streak, he has had a multiple hits eight to raise his OPS by nearly 60 points. Interestingly, he’s seen an uptick in his strikeout rate and decrease in walks as he’s hit the ball better. His overall production is about 30 percent above the Cal League average without accounting for ballpark factors.
TinCaps 12, Dayton Dragons 0
Key Stats: RHP Luis Patiño (W, 4-3) 5 IP, 0H, 1BB, 7K; CF Jeisson Rosario 2-5, 2 R; LF Robbie Podorsky 2-4, R, 2 RBI, BB; C Luis Campusano 2-4, R, RBI, BB; 1B Nick Feight 3-5, 3 R, 2B, HR (2), 3 RBI; 3B Kelvin Melean 2-4, 2 HR (2), 5 RBI
UPDATE: At 18 years old, @TinCaps pitcher @luispatinoa_ is STILL the 3rd youngest pitcher in the MWL… he pitched 5 no-hit innings tonight… Since May 28th (10 GS), he STILL has the lowest qualifying ERA (0.94) in all of full-season professional baseball 🔥 https://t.co/aqFitXoAr7
— Cory Stace (@CoryStace) July 26, 2018
Prospect Watch: As Cory notes, Luis Patiño not only has the lowest ERA in the Midwest League over the last two months but the lowest ERA in all of full-season ball. Wednesday was the Colombian’s third start of five innings or more without allowing a hit. He’s seen a jump in his strikeout rate deeper into the season while walking fewer. Opponents are hitting just .204 against him. … Entering the game the TinCaps had not had a player hit two home runs in a game all season. Also entering the game, Kelvin Melean had not hit a home run in over 650 professional plate appearances. Both things happened Wednesday night. Melean hit two home runs for the TinCaps giving him two career home runs and raising his slash line with Fort Wayne to an impressive .319/.400/.574 in 14 games. While Melean spent most of the year with the Storm, he is still just 19 and was among the highest profile J-2 signing the year before the big money splurge of 2016.
Spokane Indians 7, Dust Devils 1
Key Stats: RHP Sam Keating (L, 2-4) 3.2 IP, 4 H, 7 ER, 3 BB, K; SS Owen Miller 2-4, SB (4); 2B Olivier Basabe 2-4, 2B, RS
Prospect Watch: As good of a night as it was throughout the system, it wasn’t in eastern Washington. The Dust Devils managed no walks and 12 strikeouts in a blow out loss. Last year’s fourth-round pick Sam Keating had a forgettable start, allowing a season-high seven earned runs over 3.2 innings. This wasn’t an aberration as he has allowed 21 earned runs over his last 25 innings while walking more batters (17) than he has struck out (13). … Olivier Basabe, whose double was the only extra-base hit allowed by Rangers’ top pitching prospect Hans Crouse, now sports a .533 slugging percentage that’s good for fourth in the league.
AZL Padres (1) 10, AZL Padres (2) 1
Key Stats: LHP Ryan Weathers 0.1 IP, 2 H, 4 R, ER, 2 BB, K; RHP Hansel Rodriguez IP, BB, K; LHP Kyle Lloyd 3 IP, 2 H, BB, 7 K; DH Xavier Edwards 2-4, 3B, 3 RS, RBI, BB; 2B Lee Solomon 3-4, 2 HR (4), 3 RS, 4 RBI, BB; 1B Nick Gatewood 3-5, 2 2B, RS, 2 RBI
Prospect Watch: Ryan Weathers made his long-awaited debut. After a leadoff error, he gave up a homer and double before walking two. He did strike out the last batter he faced, before giving way. A second error after he’d left plated two more runs in what will go down as a forgettable start for the talented 18-year-old. … On the other end of that first run scored was the player picked right after him, Xavier Edwards. Edwards has reached base in all 12 games he’s played this season, posting a strong .471 OBP. He hadn’t connected for an extra-base hit until he smacked a triple Wednesday night. After missing three weeks with a wrist issue, he’s appearing only as the DH before he’s ready to play shortstop. … Lee Solomon had a pair of homers and his four now lead either AZL club. The Lipscomb University product has posted a strong .286/.405/.486 line while playing all over the field.