Jesse Scholtens in action last night for the Sod Poodles. Photo: Grant Wickes.

Las Vegas Aviators 11 Chihuahuas 2

Key Stats: LF Travis Jankowski 2-for-5; RF Josh Naylor 2-for-4, 2B, 3B; C Webster Rivas 1-for-4, HR (3); LHP Jerry Keel 5.2 IP, 9 H, 9 ER, 8 K, 4 BB

Prospect Watch: A night after El Paso set a piece of dubious history by giving up 11 homers, they again fell to Las Vegas, which closed to two games behind in the standings. Both Travis Jankowski and Josh Naylor have been hot since rejoining the Chihuahuas this week. Naylor, who collected clubbed a double and his first triple of the year, went 13-for-26 with seven extra-base hits for the week. Jankowski, officially optioned back to El Paso on Monday, is 8-for-19 since. … Lefty Kyle McGrath returned after nearly a month on the Injured List and worked a clean inning in relief. The 26-year-old had been pressed into service in the rotation in late May, his first professional exposure in a starting role. … Outfielder Boog Powell, called on to pitch for the first time as a professional, gave up one run in the ninth. The minor league free agent signee appeared to have a possible path to the big leagues earlier this year. Now with both Jankowski and Naylor as left-handed outfield options and 40-man spots in high demand, that opening seems to have closed.

Sod Poodles 4 NW Arkansas Naturals 0

Key Stats: C Luis Torrens 1-for-3, HR (10), BB; 1B Brad Zunica 2-for-3, 2 2B, BB; CF Edward Olivares 1-for-4, 2B, 3 K; RHP Jesse Scholtens 5.2 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 5 K, 3 BB

Edward Olivares is one of the best hitters in the Texas League. Photo: Grant Wickes

Prospect Watch: For the third straight day, Amarillo pitching stifled their opponents as the Sod Poodles moved to five games over .500 for the second half and extended their division lead to two. Saturday, Jesse Scholtens took his turn, dealing 5.2 scoreless innings. The 25-year-old righty needed the strong outing after a rough July. He had given up 22 runs in 18.1 innings coming into the night. The 2016 ninth-rounder has an xFIP nearly two runs below his ERA, an indication that he’s had plenty of bad luck on the year. … Catcher Luis Torrens extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a solo homer to finish the scoring in the fifth inning. The 23-year-old, who has just one option remaining heading into 2020, has been on fire in 23 games since the All-Star break, posting a .923 OPS. Unlike many of his teammates, his performance on the road nearly matches what he’s done at home. … Brad Zunica clubbed a pair of doubles as he continues to dig back from a rough June. The big first baseman sports a .276/.333/.483 line for July.

Storm 4 Inland Empire 66ers 3 (10 Innings)

Key Stats: SS Gabriel Arias 2-for-4, HR (11), E (18); LF Esteury Ruiz 1-for-3, SF; LHP Osvaldo Hernandez 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 K, 0 BB; LHP Jose Castillo 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 K; RHP Jordan Guerrero 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K, 1 BB

Prospect Watch: Ben Davey has your game story from the walk-off victory here.

Michael Curry hit his seventh home run on Saturday. Photo: Jeff Nycz.

Dayton Dragons 14 TinCaps 7

Key Stats: SS Tucupita Marcano 1-for-4, BB; 2B Justin Lopez 1-for-4, HR (9); DH Michael Curry 1-for-3, HR (7), BB; RHP Efraín Contreras 0 IP, 4 H, 6 ER, 0 K, 2 BB

Prospect Watch: The TinCaps dropped their fourth straight and find themselves looking up at the division from 11 games back. Efraín Contreras didn’t record an out as he gave up six runs. In addition to a pair of walks, the 19-year-old gave up three extra-base hits, including a grand slam that chased him from the game. While Contreras has had a strong campaign overall, he’s given up 14 runs in 15 innings this month while seeing a spike in his walk rate. The Juarez native already passed his innings total of 68.1 from three levels last season. Don’t be surprised if you see his workload dwindle over the final month of the season as he approaches 90 innings. … Michael Curry hit his seventh homer of the year to push his OPS for July to .875. He was the only TinCap in the lineup with an OPS above .800. … Dwanya Williams-Sutton singled to extend his on-base streak to 15 games.

Dust Devils 11 Everett AquaSox 4

Key Stats: SS Jordy Barley 5-for-6, 2 2B, 2 HR (5), E (14); 3B Kelvin Melean 3-for-5, 2 2B; RF Logan Driscoll 2-for-4, 2 2B, BB; DH Sean Guilbe 2-for-5, HR (5); 2B Kelvin Alarcon 3-for-5, HR (1); RHP Nick Thwaits 4.1 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 5 K, 1 BB; RHP Wen-Hua Sung 2.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 6 K, 1 BB; RHP Mason Fox 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 4 K, 0 BB

Padres prospect Jordy Barley bats for Tri-City Dust Devils

Jordy Barley does frequent damage when he makes contact. (Photo Mike Wilson)

Prospect Watch: Jordy Barley led an offensive explosion for the Dust Devils, who piled up 20 hits, including 12 for extra bases. Barley collected four of them, connecting on a pair of doubles and two homers in the game. The dynamic 19-year-old has hit .282/.349/.474 away from offense-sapping Gesa Stadium and continues to cut his strikeout rate and raise his walk rate from his two seasons in the desert. … Logan Driscoll had a pair of doubles as he logged his first action in the field since returning to action earlier in the week. Five of the left-handed batter’s 10 hits as a professional have gone for doubles. … The 2015 forgotten international free agent class contributed heavily to the offense. Kelvin Melean and Kelvin Alarcon each added three hits, Melean collecting a pair of doubles while Alarcon had his first homer of the year. Reinaldo Ilarraza also hit his third homer of the year as part of a two-hit game. … After another shaky start from Nick Thwaits, the Dust Devils bullpen locked down Everett over 4.2 innings. Wen-Hua Sung struck out six over 2.2 hitless innings. The 22-year-old now leads the team with 39 Ks in just 25 innings. Hard-throwing righty Mason Fox followed and struck out all four batters he faced to end the game. A 21st-rounder last year, Fox has whiffed 32 but walked 10 in 19 innings of work. Opponents have hit just .164 against him.

AZL Royals 8 AZL Padres-1 1

Key Stats: C Brandon Valenzuela 3-for-4, 3B; DH Hudson Head 2-for-4; CF Payton Smith 2-for-4; LHP Noel Vela 1 IP, 4 H, 3 ER

AZL Dodgers-Lasorda 26 AZL Padres-2 17 (11 Innings)

Key Stats: 2B Ripken Reyes 4-for-7, 2 2B, 6 RBI AND 1 IP, 5 H, 6 R (5 ER), 1 BB; RF Christian Heredia 2-for-7, HR (1); DH Luis Almanzar 2-for-5, 2B, BB; 1B Emmanuel Guerra 3-for-4, HR (3), BB; 3B Jarryd Dale 3-for-5, 2B, BB; RHP Mason Thompson 1 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 1 K, 2 BB

Prospect Watch: Even by Arizona League standards, what happened in Peoria Saturday night was crazy. Tied at 15 after nine innings, both clubs scored a pair of runs in the 10th and then went scoreless in the 11th. Without more pitchers, the Padres turned first to second baseman Juan Garcia, who faced just two batters and didn’t throw a strike, and then fellow infielder Ripken Reyes. By the time the frame was over, the Dodgers had posted nine runs. In all, the game included 43 hits, 19 walks, seven errors – all by the Padres and took a crisp five hours and 36 minutes to play. … Reyes almost certainly became the first player to both drive in and allow six runs in the same game. The Padres’ 30th-round pick out of the University of San Diego, Reyes is hitting .321/.424/.422 through 28 games.  … Big Venezuelan first baseman Emmanuel Guerra hit his third homer as part of a three-hit night. The 18-year-old is hitting .333/.397/.576 but has struck out in nearly 40% of his plate appearances. … While everyone present might have forgotten by the time this monstrosity ended, Mason Thompson made his second rehab start, giving up three runs and allowing five runners in one inning. The hard-throwing Texan came out of spring training on fire but was shut down on April 30 with another in a series of arm injuries. … Noel Vela made his season debut for the AZL-1 squad, also giving up three runs. The 20-year-old from south Texas has struggled to stay healthy since the Padres drafted him in 2017.

Posted by David Jay

David has written for MadFriars since 2005, has published articles in Baseball America, written a monthly column for FoxSports San Diego and appeared on numerous radio programs and podcasts. He may be best known on the island of Guam for his photos of Trae Santos that appeared in the Pacific Daily News.

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