Oklahoma City Dodgers 10, Chihuahuas 1
Key Stats: DH Luis Campusano 2-for-4; CF Trayce Thompson 1-for-4, 2B; LHP Ryan Weathers 3.1 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 3 K, 1 BB; RHP Wen-Hua Sung 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 K; LHP Ian Kroll 0.2 IP, 7 H, 7 ER, 1 BB, 0 K
Prospect Watch: The Chihuahuas fell behind early and never got untracked offensively as they fell to the Dodgers 10-1 to split their home opening series. One-time Padre Robbie Erlin, in his second appearance of the six-game series against El Paso, held the Chihuahuas offense in check all afternoon, allowing just three hits over 5.2 innings. … Ryan Weathers has made slow but steady improvements in the two starts since his ugly season opener. The lefty was charged with two runs on five hits Sunday afternoon, though two balls that fell in against him could have been outs. Weathers went to his changeup for about a quarter of his pitches, significantly more than he used it in the big leagues last summer. However he didn’t get a single swing and miss on the pitch. His fastball mostly sat 93-94, though it ran up to 96 mph. After striking out just three in his first two outings combined, the 22-year-old recorded three Ks on Sunday. … Luis Campusano had a pair of singles among the club’s seven total hits as the designated hitter. The 23-year-old has hit in each of his six games and sports an OPS of 1.102 in the early going. … Wen-Hua Sung, who was added to the roster last week, worked a perfect inning of relief in his second outing. A member of the 2016 international free agent class, Sung struck out 46 in 25 innings in Fort Wayne last year, his first pass at full-season ball.
The Missions and the rest of the Texas League took Easter Sunday off. They return to action on Tuesday in Amarillo.
TinCaps 4, South Bend Cubs 3
Key Stats: C Brandon Valenzuela 1-for-3, BB; SS Justin Lopez 1-for-4, HR (1), 4 RBI; LHP Noel Vela 3.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 5K, 3 BB, 2 WP; RHP Alek Jacob 2.1 IP, 2 BB, 0 R, 5K
Prospect Watch: After managing just two hits through the first seven innings, the TinCaps loaded the bases on walks for Justin Lopez in the bottom of the eighth. The infielder jumped a hanging breaking ball and hit it deep over the right field wall for a decisive grand slam. Lopez, who was originally ticketed to open the year in Double-A before being sent back to Fort Wayne for a fourth time, has been splitting time between shortstop and third base for the TinCaps. The switch-hitter came into the at-bat just 2-for-15 from the left side of the plate on the year. While his average is hovering below .240, Lopez – who only turns 22 next month – is reaching base at a career-best .333 clip and three of his five hits have gone for extra bases. … Noel Vela didn’t have much feel for his stuff, but still managed to keep the Cubs off the board for 3.2 innings. The 23-year-old lefty worked a 1-2-3 first, but had to work around a wild pitch on strike three to open the second inning. He didn’t allow a hit until the fourth when he loaded the bases with a pair of singles and a walk. Seth Mayberry relived him and got out of the jam for the TinCaps. Vela is holding opponents to a .148 average without an earned run through his first two outings, but has handed out five walks and two wild pitches in 7.2 innings. The Texas native is now running his fastball up to the mid-90s to go along with an above-average curve and change-up that flashes. … Alek Jacob came on with the bases loaded in the seventh, got a strikeout to end the frame and then worked two more clean innings. The Gonzaga University product with a whippy three-quarters delivery is now up to 16 professional outings and 26 innings without allowing an earned run. He sports an eye-popping 42:2 strikeout-to-walk ratio despite rarely working above the low-80s.
Storm 7, Visalia Rawhide 6
Key Stats: DH Max Ferguson 1-for-2, 2 BB, 2B, SB (10); CF Justin Farmer 1-for-4, HR (1), 2 R; RF Tyler Malone 3-for-4, LHP Jesus Gonzalez 3 IP, 5 H, 3 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, HBP; LHP Ben Miller 2 IP, 0 H, 4 K, 2 BB
Prospect Watch: After the Storm fell behind 3-0 early, outfielder Justin Farmer launched a three-run homer over the tall wall in right field, sparking an offense that would do just enough to win. Farmer, an undrafted free agent out of Florida International last summer, came into the at-bat with just three singles on the year, but he’s walked 11 times in 42 trips to the plate to boost his on-base percentage to .381. A chiselled 6-foot-1, the 23-year-old posted a .996 OPS in the desert last summer. … Max Ferguson reached base three more times Sunday with a double and a pair of walks and swiped another base. The left-handed hitting infielder finished the series 8-for-18 with 10 free passes and nine stolen bases. He’s been caught just once in 26 attempts since the Padres selected him in the fifth round of last year’s draft. … Tyler Malone, making his second start of the year in right field, collected three hits. The Padres have developed the Oregon State product as a catcher, but he’s also comfortable in the corner outfield spots or first base.