Chihuahuas 7, Round Rock Express 1
Key Statistics: RF Taylor Kohlwey, 3-for-5, 2 R, 2B; DH Brent Rooker, 1-for-3, R, HR (17), 3 RBI, BB; SS Eguy Rosario, 2-for-3, R, BB, RBI; RHP Pedro Avila, 4 IP, 3 H, ER, 2 BB, 3 K; LHP Ray Kerr (W, 3-0) 2 IP, 3 H, 2 K
Prospect Watch: El Paso cruised to another win at home. John was on-site and has the game story here.
Amarillo Sod Poodles 7, Missions 6
Key Statistics: SS Connor Hollis, 2-for-4, R; CF Thomas Milone, 2-for-4, 2 R, 3B, HR (5), 3 RBI; 1B Webster Rivas, 2-for-5; 3B Kelvin Melean, 2-for-4, 2 R, 2B, 2 RBI; RHP Nolan Watson, 4.2 IP, 9 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 5 K; RHP Jose Quezada (L, 1-1) IP, H, ER, BB, 2 K
Prospect Watch: Another night, another pair of hits for Connor Hollis, who smacked a pair of singles and scored a run. Hollis led off and started at shortstop for only the second time this year. He has embarked on a four-game hitting streak, going 8-for-18 in that span. … Speaking of hitting streaks, Thomas Milone has heated up as July crosses its midpoint with a five-game streak of his own. The outfielder is 8-for-23 during the streak, raising his average for the season to .250. Signed by the Padres after a stint with the Yankees organization, Milone, like Hollis, is a Tampa Bay Rays refugee playing in San Antonio. … So it doesn’t look like much compared to last night’s seven-RBI outburst, but Webster Rivas added two more hits to the box score, including a double. A familiar face for Padres fans after his stint with the big club in 2021, Rivas has made nine appearances for San Antonio since being sent down from El Paso on July 7. … With Hollis at shortstop, the recently-promoted Kelvin Melean got the start at the hot corner, and took advantage of the opportunity by contributing two hits, including a double, driving in two runs, and scoring a pair himself. This is the third consecutive season in which Melean has split time between three levels, this year seeing time in Fort Wayne and El Paso in addition to San Antonio. … Nolan Watson didn’t match the splendor of his previous start (six one-hit innings versus Frisco), getting hit hard and often by Amarillo. On the plus side, he didn’t issue a walk, even if the strikes he threw didn’t miss bats as much as he’d like. Watson was drafted 33rd overall by Kansas City in 2015, and came to the Padres in the offseason via free agency. … Jose Quezada earned his first loss by allowing his first earned run since June 22, a span of eight appearances and 7.1 innings. Quezada began 2022 with rehab appearances in the desert before joining the Chihuahas on June 12, then joined San Antonio on June 29.
TinCaps 4, Lansing Lugnuts 3 (game one)
Key Statistics: SS Max Ferguson, 1-for-3, HR (2), 3 RBI; RF Agustin Ruiz, 2-for-3, R, 2B; DH Adam Kerner, 1-for-1, R, BB; RHP Ryan Bergert (W, 1-6) 6 IP, 8 H, 3 ER, 4 K; RHP Edwuin Bencomo (S, 1) IP, BB
Lansing Lugnuts 4, TinCaps 2
Key Statistics: 3B Lucas Dunn, 2-for-3, BB; 2B Jarryd Dale, 1-for-2, 2 BB; LHP Jackson Wolf (L, 3-6) 5 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K; LHP Gabe Morales, IP, BB, 3 K
Prospect Watch: The TinCaps split a pair of games in a Saturday doubleheader. Fort Wayne managed just four hits in each game. … The offensive star of game one was shortstop Max Ferguson. Ferguson swatted a pitch down the right field line for a three-run homer – his second since joining the TinCaps. He went hitless in the second game. The 22-year-old has struggled out of the gate with Fort Wayne but there are encouraging signs. One, Ferguson’s 24% K rate in High-A is close to the 22.8% rate he produced with Lake Elsinore. His walk rate is five points lower with the TinCaps (19% vs. 14%) but that’s not a red flag considering he is facing more advanced pitching. Since being promoted, the BABIP gods have not been with Ferguson. He is hitting just .186 on balls in play during his short time in the Midwest League. For comparison, Ferguson hit .333 on balls in play in Lake Elsinore. As long as Ferguson continues to make contact, the hits should start to fall. … Agustin Ruiz started the first game and chipped in with two hits, including a double. The 22-year-old outfielder broke out last year with the TinCaps, earning a late-season promotion to San Antonio. He struggled down the stretch and didn’t flash the same power he had in Fort Wayne. Ruiz opened this season with the Missions but was sent back a level after a slow start. He hasn’t hit for power the way he did last season and that has cratered his production despite increasing his walk rate and lowering his K-rate. Playing time has been sporadic for Ruiz; Saturday was just the fifth game he has played in all month.
In his 16th start of the year, Ryan Bergert finally earned his first victory of the season. The 22-year-old worked six innings for the first time in his career and allowed three earned runs on eight hits. He struck out four and didn’t walk a batter for the first time since April 21. The former West Virginia pitcher has shown the ability to generate strikeouts but he’s been hit hard in some outings. He’s struck out 77 batters in 65 innings but 16.4% of his flyballs have resulted in homers, the fourth-highest mark in the Midwest League (min. 50 innings). … In the nightcap, southpaw Jackson Wolf started and took the loss. Wolf fired five innings and allowed four runs on seven hits, walking two and striking out four. The former 4th-rounder has struggled a bit since June although he’s still continued to rack up the strikeouts. He ranks eighth in the Midwest League with 94 strikeouts.
Notes: Outfielder Robert Hassell III got the start in right field in the SiriusXM Futures Game. He went 1-for-2 with an RBI. … LHP Luke Boyd was activated from the temporary inactive list . After Sunday, Fort Wayne will not be in action until Friday.
Modesto Nuts 11, Storm 1
Key Statistics: DH Wil Myers, 1-for-4, R, HR (2), RBI; CF James Wood, 1-for-3, BB, SB (14); Albert Fabian, 1-for-4, 2B; RHP Victor Lizarraga (L, 4-2) 3.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, ER, 7 K; LHP Alexuan Vega, 2 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, BB, 4 K
Prospect Watch: A night after a nine-run win, the Storm lost by ten at the hands of Modesto. That’s baseball. … Rehabbing big leaguer Wil Myers supplied the only offense for the Storm with the second homer of his rehab stint. Myers has spent the majority of the time at designated hitter in his time with the Storm. He should play again Sunday. … RHP Victor Lizarraga allowed some hard contact but he pitched much better than his line indicated. The Storm made four errors behind him. The 18-year-old worked 3.2 innings and allowed five runs but only one of them was earned.
Lizarraga didn’t walk a batter and struck out seven – just one off of his career-high. The Mexican-born righty has allowed two earned runs or less in seven straight starts. … LHP Alexuan Vega pitched the final two innings, allowing three earned runs on four hits. The former sixth-round pick has pitched well at times with the Storm but he has also had some miserable outings. He allowed eight earned runs in two innings on June 22. After that, he allowed just one earned run over his next 11 innings. He’s followed that up with nine earned runs allowed in his last two outings. Vega will need to pitch better to avoid a demotion back to the desert.
ACL Padres 4, ACL Mariners 2 (7 innings)
Key Statistics: SS Rosman Verdugo, 1-for-3, R, 2 RBI; DH Colton Bender, 1-for-3, 2 RBI; RHP Levi Thomas, 1.2 IP, H, 2 R, BB, K; RHP Evan Sweeting, 1.1 IP, 2 H, K; RHP Miguel Rondon (W, 1-3) 4 IP, 2 H, 3 BB, 3 K
Prospect Watch: The ACL Padres plated runs on a pair of two-run singles, winning in the battle of the Peoria Sports Complex. … Shortstop Rosman Verdugo had one of the RBI singles in the win. The 17-year-old shortstop got off to a hot start but he was just 1-for-18 since a multi-hit effort on July 8. Overall, the Mexican-born infielder has been one of the best hitters on the ACL team. Despite the slump, Verdugo has an impressive .830 OPS. … Right-hander Levi Thomas made a rehab start and pitched 1.2 innings, allowing a pair of unearned runs. He’s been on the Storm injured list since June 23. He should be back in Lake Elsinore within the next week or two.
… RHP Evan Sweeting took over for Thomas and recorded four outs. He allowed a pair of hits and struck out one. The 20-year-old from Nassau has pitched well in his first extended look as a professional. In 12.1 innings, he’s pitched to a 2.19 ERA in 12.1 innings.