Xavier Edwards continues to hit in 2019. Photo: Jerry Espinoza)

Chihuahuas 3 Sacramento River Cats 0

Key Stats: RF Michael Gettys 2-for-3, 3B, BB; 1B Aderlin Rodriguez 1-for-3, BB; LHP Dillon Overton 6 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 5 K, 2 BB; RHP Seth Megill 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K, 0 BB S (6)

Michael Gettys set the El Paso franchise home run record this year. Photo: Mike Wilson)

Prospect Watch: Lefty Dillon Overton matched rehabbing big leaguer Johnny Cueto zero for zero through the first six innings until El Paso broke through against the Sacramento bullpen and claimed the victory. The Chihuahuas now trail in the division by one with two games to play. They’d win a tiebreaker with Las Vegas. Overton, 28, allowed just two singles and a pair of walks on the night, lowering his ERA for the month to 3.09. The lefthander didn’t make a roster out of spring training and got hit hard once he did go out to El Paso, but he’s been quite strong since the all-star break. He’ll be able to hit the minor league free agent market this winter. … Michael Gettys collected the only extra-base hit for either club all night when he pulled a triple into left to drive in the second run. The Chihuahuas’ 23-year-old outfielder finished with a pair of hits and a walk on the night.

Arkansas Travelers 9 Sod Poodles 7

Key Stats: CF Taylor Trammell 1-for-4, BB; 3B Hudson Potts 2-for-4, HR (15); 2B Ivan Castillo 2-for-5, 2B; RHP Ronald Bolaños 1 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 K, 1 BB; LHP Aaron Leasher 2.1 IP, 4 H, 7 ER, 1 K, 4 BB

Prospect Watch: The Mariners’ Double-A affiliate jumped newly-promoted lefty Aaron Leasher for six runs in the fifth inning and then held off a late Sod Poodles rally. The Padres’ sixth-rounder in 2017 has been a strong contributor for Lake Elsinore all year, allowing just six runs over his final 24 Cal League innings. He got through his first two frames of relief Saturday well, allowing one home run. But in the fifth inning, he lost the plate completely and walked four straight before giving way. … Leasher was in the game so early because Ronald Bolanos made a scheduled brief outing as a tune-up for the playoffs. The righty, who turned 23 last week, needed 25 pitches to get through his inning of work. He has delivered 130.1 strong innings across two levels this season. … Hudson Potts continued his hot charge toward the end of the season, connecting on his 15th homer of the year and extending his hitting streak to six. The 20-year-old infielder has struck out just five times in his last 58 plate appearances, but also hasn’t drawn a walk in that stretch. He’s posted an .824 OPS at home for the year, but has an ugly .190/.248/.327 line on the road.

Storm 6 Lancaster JetHawks 3

Key Stats: CF Franchy Cordero 0-for-4, 3 K; 2B Xavier Edwards 2-for-3, 2B, BB, 2 SB; LF Jack Suwinski 1-for-2, BB, SF; RHP Edwuin Bencomo 5 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 5 K, 3 BB; RHP Elliot Ashbeck 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K, 1 BB

Prospect Watch: For the second consecutive night, the Storm won behind a newly-promoted starting pitcher. Edwuin Bencomo, who worked in extended and opened in the AZL before joining Fort Wayne in July, allowed three runs over five frames in his first taste of the Cal League. The 20-year-old Venezuelan righty worked a season-high five innings and went over 80 pitches for the first time. Bencomo has struck out 48 across 44.2 innings of work on the year. … Second baseman Xavier Edwards had slumped earlier in the month, going 1-for-22 in a stretch this week and 6-for-47 overall. But the dynamo switch-hitter has found his groove again heading into the playoffs. Edwards had a single, double and walk in four trips to the plate and swiped a pair of bases Saturday. He’s reached base in eight of his last 13 trips to the plate, pushing his on-base percentage for Elsinore back up to .348. The 20-year-old has converted on 14 of his 16 stolen base attempts in 45 Cal League games.

TinCaps 9 Lansing Lugnuts 2

Key Stats: LF Dwanya Williams-Sutton 1-for-4, HR (9), BB; DH Michael Curry 1-for-3, 2 BB; SS Justin Lopez 1-for-4, HR (13), 2 K; RHP Carlos Guarate 4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 5 K, 1 BB; RHP Dylan Coleman 3 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), 3 K, 0 BB

Prospect Watch: The TinCaps spotted 18-year-old Carlos Guarate with eight runs in his full-season debut and cruised to victory. Guarate, younger than any Midwest League player but Jesus Gonzalez – who made his TinCaps debut earlier in the week – worked four strong innings, allowing just one run and using his advanced curve to record five strikeouts. The long-limbed Venezuelan hurler still works with a fastball that sits 89-90, but his lively arm action and lithe frame are good building blocks for future increased velocity. … Dylan Coleman, who was hitting the upper-90s with his fastball last spring, has been in the low-90s since returning from a few months in Peoria trying to re-find his mechanics. The big righty delivered his best outing of the year Saturday, allowing just one unearned run over three walk-free innings. He’s issued eight free passes in 12.2 frames for the TinCaps. … Dwanya Williams-Sutton launched a grand slam to cap off Fort Wayne’s big second inning. The strong-bodied outfielder hadn’t connected on more than two homers in any month this season, but has hit three in the last three days. He’s been getting to his power more consistently during the second half of the season even as he’s decreased his strikeout rate. Watch for him to put up some big numbers in the Cal League next summer.

Dust Devils 8 Spokane Indians 7

Key Stats: 1B Jason Pineda 3-for-4, 3 2B; 3B Luke Becker 2-for-3, 2B, BB, 2 SB (3); SS Kelvin Melean 0-for-1, 2 BB, 2 HBP; RHP Starlin Cordero 2.1 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 4 K, 0 BB; RHP Wen-Hua Sung 1.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 K, 0 BB

Prospect Watch: In a preview of the North Division playoff series, Tri-City rallied to beat Spokane as the Dust Devils pitching staff recorded 12 strikeouts to set a new Northwest League season record. Starlin Cordero, who has contributed 50 of the team’s 765 Ks, came in with the bases loaded and allowed just one to score as he delivered 2.1 frames in an all-staff game. The righty, whose height, velocity and lack of control are all reminiscent of Tayron Guerrero, has allowed just two earned runs over his last 9.2 innings, striking out 18 and “only” walking six in the process. … Fellow righthanded reliever Wen-Hua Sung punched out two more Saturday afternoon as he pushed toward the close of his first full, healthy year in the system. The big-bodied hurler from Taiwan, who will turn 23 on Monday, has paced the staff by striking out 34.5% of the hitters he’s faced. He’ll likely be pushed to move up multiple levels next season. … Jason Pineda paced the offense with three doubles. The 19-year-old corner infielder continues to struggle to make contact – he’s whiffed in a third of his plate appearances for the second consecutive season – but the Bronx-raised slugger’s contact is loud when he makes it. The Padres knew he would be a project when he became the youngest position player to sign in out of the 2017 draft class.

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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