Chihuahuas 2, Round Rock Express 1

Key Statistics: SS Eguy Rosario 1-for-2, 2 BB, SB (2); LF Ben Gamel 2-for-4; RF Oscar Mercado 2-for-4; CF Jose Azocar 2-for-3, 2 SB (17); C Austin Nola 1-for-4, RBI: RHP Nolan Watson 5 IP 6 H, 1 R (0 ER) BB, 6 K; LHP Aaron Leasher 1 IP H, K; RHP Aaron Brooks 1 IP, K; RHP Eric Hanhold 1 IP 2 K; LHP Ray Kerr, (W, 5-0) 1 IP, 2 K

Jose Azocar stole a pair of bases on Saturday. (Photo: Jorge Salgado)

Prospect Watch: Austin Nola, 33, came into the game hitting .083 in his first 22 plate appearances back in Triple-A. In a tie game with one out and runners on second and third in the ninth, Nola came through with a game-winning single to left field to give the Chihuahuas the victory. … El Paso got five stellar pitching performances as they gave up just a single unearned run. However, the club was still down going to the bottom of the eighth as the Express also held the Chihuahuas scoreless for seven innings. Jose Azocar evened it in the eighth, when he singled, stole second and third base, and then scored on a wild pitch. … Ben Gamel, 31, who the Padres acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays in mid-July, had a pair of hits and is off to a solid start in his first nine games with four extra-base hits, including three home runs in his first 41 plate appearances for a 1.032 OPS. … Nolan Watson, 26, a former first-round selection of the Kansas City Royals in 2015, was signed as a minor league free agent by the Padres in 2022 and started the year in San Antonio again this season before being promoted to Triple-A in late June. He struggled in his first three starts with El Paso as he gave up 17 runs in 13.1 innings, but in his last two appearances, one in relief in Oklahoma City, he hasn’t been charged with a run in seven innings. … Ray Kerr, 28, got his fifth win of the year, which gives him the most on the club to go along with a 2.61 ERA, the second lowest on the club after Tom Cosgrove.

Roster Moves: With Brett Sullivan rejoining the Padres, catcher Michael Cantu was reinstated from the Development List. The Padres also moved infielder Evan Mendoza, who just came off the Injured List, to El Paso from Double-A San Antonio.

Corpus Christi Hooks 10, Missions 0

Key Statistics:  DH Jackson Merrill 1-for-4; C Brandon Valenzuela 1-for-3, BB; CF Korry Howell 1-for-3, BB; SS Ripken Reyes 1-for-3; LHP Jackson Wolf (L, 8-9) 3.1 IP, 10 H, 8 ER, 2 BB, K, 2 HR; RHP Seth Mayberry 2 IP, H, K; RHP Efrain Contreras 1 IP, BB, 2 K

Ripken Reyes has walked 38 times this year and been hit by a pitch 35 times. (Photo: San Antonio Missions)

Prospect Watch: After getting his first big league win last Saturday, Jackson Wolf struggled in his return to San Antonio. In his first 17 starts, Wolf hadn’t given up more than four earned runs. Saturday, the Hooks doubled that, tagging the 24-year-old lefty for five extra-base hits in 3.1 innings. … Seth Mayberry, 23, returned from the injured list after being out since June 11 and threw two scoreless innings. The 23-year-old righty, who gets big movement on his sinker and slider, didn’t issue a walk on the day, a positive sign for Mayberry, who came in with 20 in 21.2 innings. … Down big early, the Missions offense was held to four singles. … Brandon Valenzuela, 22, who got off to a fast start after his promotion to Double-A, broke out of an 0-23 slump with a single and also reached on a walk. … Ripken Reyes‘s batting average for July is down to .257, but the USD product has still been reaching base a .433 clip. On the season, the 26-year-old has walked 38 times against 56 strikeouts in 353 plate appearances but has been hit by a pitch 35 times.

West Michigan Whitecaps 8, TinCaps 5

Key Statistics: RF Kai Murphy 2-for-4, BB: DH Carlos Luis 2-for-4, HR (5), BB, RBI, 2B; C Anthony Vilar 1-for-3, HR (2), RBI; 2B Nerwilian Cedeño 1-for-5 HR (3), 2 RBI; LHP Miguel Cienfuegos 5.1 IP 4 H, 3 R, BB, 4 K; RHP Will Geerdes (L, 0-3) 1.2 IP 6 H, 5 R, BB, 3 K

Albert Fabian joined the TinCaps after a strong first half in Lake Elsinore. (Photo: Jeff Nycz)

Prospect Watch: The TinCaps got three home runs and a decent start from Miguel Cienfuegos, 26, but a tough night for the Fort Wayne bullpen sank the visitors. … With the promotions of Jackson Merrill and Marcos Castañon to San Antonio, the TinCaps are searching for more options on offense, as five of Saturday’s starters finished the game with an OPS below .650. … Albert Fabian, 21, was among the Cal League leaders with a .502 slugging percentage in 62 games, but has just seven extra-base hits in his first 21 games since getting promoted. With the TinCaps, his walk rate has gone up from 6.1% to 10.7%, but his strikeout rate has also risen from 18.7% to 23.8%, and a significant drop-off in power, with his isolated power dropping from .237 to .151. … Cienfuegos, who worked just two innings before his start on Wednesday was suspended by rain, bounced back with 5.1 innings of three-run ball Saturday. The 26-year-old lefthander, whose first stint in affiliated ball was interrupted by almost two months in the IL, has posted a 3.16 ERA in 17.1 innings this month.

Stockton Ports 4, Storm 2

Key Statistics: C Ethan Salas 1-for-4, HR (9), RBI; RF Braedon Karpathios 1-for-3, 2B; 2B Jay Beshears 1-for-4, HR (1), RBI; RHP Henry Williams (L, 1-5) 5 IP 4 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 4 K, HR; RHP Ruben Galindo 2 IP, 3 H, BB, K

Jay Beshears was selected in the 6th round by the Padres in 2023.(Photo: Duke University Athletics)

Prospect Watch: On the road in Stockton and down 3-0 early, the Storm got back-to-back solo homers from  Ethan Salas and Jay Beshears to cut the deficit, but never got closer. Lake Elsinore lost for the second night in a row after winning the first three games of the series. … Beshears, 21, the Padres’ sixth-round selection out of Duke this year, hit his first professional home run in his fifth overall game and third with the Storm. This season he posted a 1.024 as a transfer to the Blue Devils. The 6-foot-4, 215 pounder, who might settle as a second baseman, is someone to keep an eye on. … Salas, 17, continues to amaze. He has hit eight of his nine home runs on the road and, in only 200 plate appearances, is fourth on the team in home runs. After hitting .190/.311/.321 in June in 103 plate appearances, he has rebounded in a big way with a .366/.416/.720 slash line in 89 July plate appearances.

ACL Reds 6, ACL Padres 5 (7 innings)

Key Statistics:  2B Jarryd Dale 1-for-2; 1B Romeo Sanabria 1-for-3, BB; LF Juan Murillo 1-for-4, HR (2), 3 RBI; 3B Jose Sanabria 2-for-3; CF Homer Bush, Jr. 0-for-4, SB (5); RHP Elvis Saba 2.0 IP 2 H, 2 K; RHP Jhosep Chirinos (L, 2-2)1.0 IP 3 H, 3 R, 5 BB, 2 K

Romeo Sanabria keeps on hitting. (Photo: Jerry Espinoza)

Prospect Watch: The ACL Padres were up by two going to the bottom of the seventh and final inning, but Jhosep Chirinos allowed all five batters he faced to reach as the Padres’ ACL club went down in defeat. The 19-year-old has shown big extension and intriguing velocity from the mound, striking out 26 in his 13 innings of work, but has walked 24 and hit five more batterson the way to a 10.38 ERA. … Homer Bush, Jr., 21, was finally held hitless after getting at least one hit in his first five games but still stole his fifth base in as many attempts. He has seven hits, including a double and a pair of home runs, to go along with two walks in his first 23 plate appearances. … Romeo Sanabria, 21, was strong in June, hitting .333/.429/.621, but he has been even better in July, with a stellar .443/.472/.787 line. The left-handed hitting Sanabria was a catcher in Indian River State College (JC) and played there last year in his first six games in 2022 with the organization. They have moved him to first base/DH this year, and he has shined.

Posted by John Conniff

John grew up in Poway and has written for MadFriars since 2004. He has written articles for Baseball America, FoxSports San Diego, the El Paso Times, San Antonio Express-News, Amarillo Globe-News, Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette and Pacific Daily News in addition to appearing on numerous radio programs and podcasts. He can also break down the best places to eat for all five of the affiliates. There is no best place to eat in Peoria, Arizona.

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