Despite El Paso falling in extra-innings, the Padres and their affiliates outscored their opponents 51-to-18 Wednesday for a great day on the farm.
Oklahoma City Dodgers 8, Chihuahuas 6 (10 innings)
Key Stats: DH Nelson Cruz 2-for-5, HR (1), 2 RBI; SS Matthew Batten 2-for-5, 2 R, 3B, RBI; 3B Tim Lopes 2-for-5, R; CF Luis Liberato 1-for-3, HR (4), 2 R, RBI, BB; LHP Adrian Morejon IP, 2 H, ER, K; RHP Reiss Knehr 3 IP, 2 H, ER, 4 K; LHP Jose Castillo IP, H, 2 ER, BB, K
Prospect Watch: Making his first rehab appearance after injuring his right hamstring, designated hitter Nelson Cruz, struggled in his first three plate appearances, going 0-for-3 with a strikeout. He came up in the eighth and smashed a 427-foot blast to left-center for a home run then rifled a single up the middle in the ninth to force the game into extras and finish the game 2-for-5. … Playing against the team with the best record in the PCL, the Chihuahuas threw out their best chance. All five pitchers used in regulation are on the 40-man roster. Pedro Avila, Reiss Knehr, Jose Castillo, and Adrian Morejon each surrendered a home run but only combined for one walk to limit the damage. Lefty Ray Kerr, who worked the ninth, was the only El Paso pitcher to work a scoreless inning. After going a month without allowing a run to score, Kerr had given up runs in back-to-back outings going into the night. He finished May with a 0.82 ERA. With tonight’s scoreless outing, Kerr has a 2.33 ERA across 19 games for El Paso. … The home run Knehr allowed was the only run he gave up over three innings and the first he’s surrendered in six innings this month while striking out eight. … Right fielder Jose Azocar, hitting third for the second straight night, went 1-for-5, with his third stolen base. Azocar has hit safely in every game since joining El Paso (8-for-20).
Missions 10, Wichita Wind Surge 4
Key Stats: LHP Jackson Wolf (W, 5-5) 6 IP, 2 H, 7 K; SS Ripken Reyes 2-for-4, RS, RBI, BB; LF Jorge Ona 2-for-3, HR (3), 2B, 2 RBI, BB; RF Tirso Ornelas 2-for-5, 2B, RS, RBI; 2B Michael De La Cruz 3-for-5, 2 2B,3 RS, 2 RBI; 3B Juan Fernandez 2-for-5, RS, 2 RBI
Prospect Watch: Lefthander Jackson Wolf followed up six scoreless innings last week, with another scoreless effort over six innings. In this one, Wolf had a perfect game going into the sixth inning. While he did allow back-to-back hits, he rebounded with a strikeout and double play to finish six at just one over the minimum. The seven strikeouts add to his team-leading 68 on the season, putting him third in the Texas League. Wolf has allowed just one earned run on six hits over 18 innings in his last three starts while posting a 19-5 strikeout-to-walk ratio. … With Wolf dominating the way he was, suspense about the game’s outcome ended in the third when left fielder Jorge Oña blasted his second home run in three games and third of the season to give the Missions a 4-0 lead. For Oña, the home run is a welcome sign after managing just eight last season. Oña collected just six total bases in 11 April games, but since May 15, the 26-year-old has reached base in 11 straight games, with all of his home runs and four doubles. His .430 slugging percentage is the highest it’s been since back in 2019. … Speaking of rebounding after a sluggish start, right fielder Tirso Ornelas had his second consecutive multi hit-game and has hit safely in every contest in June. After a sub-.700 OPS in both April and May, Tirso has a .971 OPS in 30 plate appearances so far.
TinCaps 12, Quad City River Bandits 3
Key Stats: RHP Adam Mazur (W, 1-0) 6 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 4 K; SS Jackson Merrill 1-for-5, RBI, BB, SB (7); RHP Jared Kollar (S, 1) 3 IP, H, 5 K; 1B Nathan Martorella 2-for-5, 2 HR (8,9), 3 R, 4 RBI, BB; C Brandon Valenzuela 3-for-4, HR (4), 2B, 3 R, RBI, BB; 3B Marcos Castañon 2-for-5, 2 R, RBI; LF Justin Farmer 2-for-3, R, RBI, 2 BB, SB (9)
Prospect Watch: Righty Adam Mazur earned his first professional win despite matching his career high with three runs allowed. All of the damage came in the third when Mazur gave up four consecutive hits to start the inning. In the other five innings, the 22-year-old faced just one batter over the minimum. The three earned runs are more than opponents managed over 19 innings in May. … Despite going 2-0 with a sub-2 ERA as a starter, righty Jared Kollar worked out of the bullpen, throwing the last three innings to secure his first professional save. Kollar allowed just one hit while striking out five River Bandits. Over 26.2 innings in seven appearances since joining the TinCaps in late April, the undrafted free agent out of Rutgers has a 1.35 ERA, … The TinCaps put up 12 runs in a blowout. The leader on offense was first baseman Nathan Martorella, who slugged his eighth and ninth home runs of the season. Martorella had not homered in nearly three weeks before Wednesday and seen his slugging percentage drop 70 points since his last home run. Even after the cold stretch, Martorella’s .276/.385/.503 line in his first full season in the minors is about 50% above league average and he has the sixth-best OPS on the circuit. … One of the few TinCaps to hit early in the year just hasn’t stopped. Catcher Brandon Valenzuela had an .845 OPS in APril while the TinCaps struggled offensively. Now that teammates are clicking, Valenzuela is hitting .400/.471/.800 so far in June. The 22-year-old backstop continues to show that he may be closer to the 2021 hitter that took the Cal League by Storm with an .833 OPS than the guy who struggled for any consistency last year.
Storm 13, Fresno Grizzlies 2
Key Statistics: C Ethan Salas 0-for-3, RS, RBI, 2 K; LHP Jagger Haynes 4 IP, 2 H, BB, 2 K; CF Samuel Zavala 1-for-4, RS, RBI, 2B, BB, SB (9); 3B Graham Pauley 3-for-6, 2B, 3B, HR (9), 2 RS, 4 RBI; DH Albert Fabian 2-for-5, HR (9); SS Wyatt Hoffman 2-for-4, 2B, 2 RS, 2 RBI, BB; 2B Rosman Verdugo 1-for-3, 2 RS, 2 BB, SB (9)
Prospect Watch: The Storm scored 13 runs, and catching phenom Ethan Salas was the only starter not to get at least one hit. He did walk twice and score a run. His OPS is at .890 through his first seven games. … The star of the game was third baseman Graham Pauley, who came just a single away from the cycle. The nine bases are a new career high, bringing his slugging % back over .500. Pauley has multiple hits in every game in June and is 15-for-30. The former Blue Devil leads the league with a .445 on-base percentage and his .505 slugging percentage is good for fourth. …Designated hitter Albert Fabian homered in back-to-back games for the second time this season. This was also the second game in a row that Fabian doubled and struck out once. Fabian’s nine home runs lead the team, but he is still off the pace from last year when he finished second with 12 home runs in only 62 games. … For the first time in his professional career, lefty Jagger Haynes pitched four innings, needing just 42 pitches to get there. He came out to start the fifth inning but had to call out the trainer and leave before starting the frame. He appeared to be having an issue with his index finger, but there was no official update yet. Haynes was very sharp in his four innings of work. He walked just one batter and allowed two hits.