LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. — The Storm offense exploded for 12 hits and 11 runs while left-hander Nick Margevicius held Visalia to one run over seven innings for Lake Elsinore to beat Visalia 11-3 and even the series.
Since being promoted in early July from Low-A Fort Wayne, the six-foot-five Margevicius has struggled on the road with an 11.30 ERA in 14.1 innings but has been lights out at home with a 0.95 ERA in 19.1 innings.
“There are some fun parks to pitch to in this league, but the hitters’ discipline is also much better,” Margevicius said of the differences between the leagues.
“I had to make some adjustments in how I went about my pitches.”
Tonight he threw a very efficient 92 pitches, with 60 for strikes.
“He was changing speeds very well and throwing his breaking ball well,” said Storm manager Edwin Rodriguez. “He did a very good job of keeping the opposition off-balance on the first pitch. We saw a lot of bad swings early in the count.”
The offensive star of the night was one of the Padres’ Rule 5 players from last year, catcher Luis Torrens, who was four-for-five on the night with a double and his fifth home run of the year.
Last year for the Padres, he played in 56 games and had 135 plate appearances; this year he has made 402 plate appearances in 99 games, more than twice his previous career high from 2014.
“I am getting tired a little bit, but I have wanted to play every day and show what I can do,” said Torrens.
On the season Torrens has posted a slash line of .292/.330/.426 – just above league average – and a team-leading 61 RBI.
“Before the season we talked about this as an organization,” said Rodriguez on the amount of playing time that Torrens has received this year. “Right now he has had more at-bats than at any time in his career, and that was the goal. We thought the offense would come, but he is showing that he is able to catch every day.”
Center fielder Edward Olivares also had a nice night going three-for-four with three RBI. His OPS has spiked to .830 since the All-Star break as his strikeout rate has fallen and his Isolated Power rate has climbed.
Storm Notes: Designated Hitter Jorge Oña was pulled from the game after his first at-bat. He had a cut finger before the game and was removed as a precautionary measure. That will end his on-base streak at nine games. The 21-year-old was off to a hot start to August with an 1.170 OPS, so he’ll want to get back as quickly as possible. … Thursday night right-hander Ronald Bolaños will take the mound in the rubber game.