Luis Liberato hit home run number 20 on Thursday. (Photo: Jorge Salgado)

Chihuahuas 9, Albuquerque Isotopes 4

Key Statistics: LHP Tom Cosgrove, 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K; RF Brandon Dixon, 1-for-4, HR, R, 4 RBI, BB; CF Thomas Milone, 1-for-3, 2B, 2 R, RBI, BB; DH Luis Liberato, 1-for-3, HR (20), 2 R, 2 RBI, 2 BB

Prospect Watch: The Chihuahuas jumped out to an early lead and saw it evaporate before rallying back late. Things got off to a good start when Luis Liberato hit one out of the park for a two-run homer, giving El Paso a 3-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Liberato, signed as a free agent in the offseason after eight seasons in the Mariners system, now has 20 home runs on the year and a .895 OPS while primarily patrolling center field. … The Chihuahuas took the lead back thanks to Thomas Milone scoring on a balk, then recaptured the lead again thanks to his double in the eighth, his seventh in a pair of stints with El Paso this year. … Not to be outdone, Brandon Dixon put the game out of reach with a 480-foot grand slam that relocated the baseball to the forested area beyond the batter’s eye. Since joining the Chihuahuas, the veteran Dixon has hit six home runs in 11 games, and he has 16 in 37 games in a season truncated by injury which kept him out for a few months. … In a roller coast of a night for the pitching staff, Tom Cosgrove was a bridge over troubled waters, throwing two perfect innings, striking out two. Cosgrove is 2-1 with a 3.60 ERA in 25 innings since being promoted to El Paso, striking out 36 while walking 11, and will be in consideration for the 40-man roster picture heading into 2023.

Springfield Cardinals 6, Missions 3

Key Statistics: RHP Felix Minjarez, 2.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K; RHP Kevin Kopps 2.2 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 5 K, 2 BB, WP; LHP Fred Schlichtholz, 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K; SS Connor Hollis, 2-for-4, R, RBI; C Juan Fernandez, 2-for-4, R

Connor Hollis is in the mix for a Texas League batting crown. (Photo: San Antonio Missions)

Prospect Watch: The Missions fell behind early when Springfield got to Kevin Kopps for three runs despite striking out five times in 2.1 innings, but Felix Minjarez delivered a gem in relief to keep San Antonio in the game. The 25-year-old righty from Riverside is 5-0 with a 5.27 ERA in 54.2 innings across three levels in 2022. … Coronado High School southpaw Fred Schlichtholz tossed two scoreless innings, allowing only a hit. The 26-year-old Fresno State product owns a 2.18 ERA in 33 innings for San Antonio, striking out 36 and walking eight. …  Connor Hollis collected a pair of hits and is now batting .329, giving him a five point lead among qualified batters for the Texas League batting title. If Hollis hangs on to win, this would be his second minor league batting crown, as he won the 2018 Appalachian League batting title. … Juan Fernandez extended his hitting streak to five games with a pair of base knocks. The catcher-turned-infielder is batting .320 in September after posting a .344 mark in August, as the 23-year-old continues to be one of the best stories on the Missions roster this summer.

TinCaps 14, Lake County Captains 8

Key Statistics: RHP Ryan Bergert (W, 4-10), 5.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 6 K; C Brandon Valenzuela, 2-for-5, HR, 2 R, RBI; 1B Cole Cummings, 1-for-4, 2B, R, 2 RBI; 2B Lucas Dunn, 3-for-6, R, RBI

Brandon Valenzuela is having is finishing strong. (Photo: Jeff Nycz).

Prospect Watch: The TinCaps offense broke out to match a season high with14 runs, and Ryan Bergert delivered a solid five-inning start to get things going for Fort Wayne. Bergert, the Padres’ sixth-round selection out of West Virginia in 2021, is 4-10 with a 5.84 ERA in 103.1 innings for the TinCaps in 2022, striking out 129 and walking 42. … Brandon Valenzuela socked his ninth home run of the season, and second of September, a month the catcher is slashing .292/.370/.583 in 24 at-bats. The hot finish is a welcome sight for Valenzuela, who has struggled at the plate after slashing .299/.393/.429 in 378 at-bats in 2021. … Cole Cummings blasted a double and drove in a pair of runs, while also scoring one himself. The former UCSB Gaucho has eight doubles and six home runs in 205 at-bats since being promoted to Fort Wayne. … Lucas Dunn broke out of his September funk in a big way, doubling his hit total for the month with a three-hit evening. The University of Louisville product is batting .221 with four home runs in 290 at-bats since his promotion to the TinCaps.

Storm 12Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 4

Key Statistics: RHP Matt Boswell (W, 1-1), 2.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K; DH Griffin Doersching, 2-for-4, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI, BB; 3B Marcos Castanon, 2-for-5, 2B, HR, 2 R, 3 RBI; LF Graham Pauley, 2-for-3, 2B, R, RBI

Griffin Doersching hit another home run. (Photo: Jerry Espinoza)

Prospect Watch: The Storm put the hurt on their regional and organizational rivals, boosted by a seven-run seventh inning. The result also included the first professional win for Matt Boswell. Boswell, an undrafted free agent from the South Alabama Jaguars, led the Sun Belt Conference in strikeouts prior to signing with the Padres. In six appearances with the Storm (three starts), Boswell is 1-1 with a 4.30 ERA in 14.2 innings with 16 strikeouts and seven walks. … After a bit of a slump to start September, Griffin Doersching is back on the board with the seventh home run of his professional career. Doersching, a towering first baseman drafted out of Oklahoma State in the eighth round this summer, exploded on the scene with six home runs in August. After cooling off a bit, he still sports a .929 OPS in 87 at-bats, all but 10 of those being since he joined the Storm after a brief stint in the Arizona Complex League. … Marcos Castañon had a night, with a double, and his 23rd home run. The former UCSB star’s 23rd homer marks the most by a Storm player since Cody Decker slugged 28 in 2010. … With a two-hit game including a double, Graham Pauley continues to excel since the Duke product joined the Padres as a 13th round selection this summer. Pauley is batting .314 with a .925 OPS in 51 at-bats since being promoted from the desert to Lake Elsinore.

Posted by Mark Wilkens

Born in San Diego and raised in Escondido, Mark now calls Phoenix home. Prior to MadFriars, Mark had multiple articles featured on Bleacher Report and covering the Padres, Angels and Clippers.

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