Friday highlights from the Giants' farm: Jorge Bucardo faced the minimum 24 batters in 8.0 IP, Thomas Neal and Brad Boyer homered while having three hits each, Jesus Guzman also homered while reaching base three times, and Ryan Lollis homered and singled. Also notable, Brandon Belt doubled twice as part of his three hits, and Francisco Peguero had another three-hit night.
AAA: Fresno lost Reno 9-5
Fresno: SP Matt Yourkin: 4.0+ IP, 8 H, 6 R, 5 ER, 4 BB, 3 K--1 HR, 1 IBB, 1 E
Fresno: RP Henry Sosa: 2.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 1 K--2 HR
Guzman had his 13th HR while reaching base three times. Bowker's three singles accounted for nearly half of the Grizzlies' seven hits. With the oh-fer that included the hat trick, Pill's AVG in July is just .176, which has lowered his season AVG to .272 and OBP to .318. Hester, who has played in 20 games for the Diamondbacks earlier this year, had a big game with his 5th HR and 11th double that helped his raise his PCL OPS to nearly 1.100.
Yourkin had been the Grizzlies' ace recently with just 6 ER over his previous five starts, but he was fairly ineffective in this start. Sosa made his fifth relief appearance since leaving the Grizzlies' rotation. This was his least effective of those appearances. Since leaving the rotation at the end of June, he has 11 H, 6 BB, and 8 K in 13.0 IP with a 2.77 ERA.
AA: Richmond defeated Bowie 14-4
(after leading 10-2 through three innings)
Richmond: LF Thomas Neal: 3 for 5, HR, HBP, SO
Richmond: 1B Brandon Belt: 3 for 5, 2 2B, SO
Richmond: DH Brad Boyer: 3 for 4, HR, BB
Bowie: RF Joel Guzman: 2 for 5, 2 HR, SO, GiDP
Richmond: SP Craig Westcott: 6.0 IP, 9 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 3 K--3 HR, 1 HB, 1 WP
Richmond: RP Andy Sisco: 3.0 IP, 1 H, 2 BB, 5 K
With three hits each, Neal, Belt and Boyer accounted for over half of the Flying Squirrels' sixteen hits. In the 1st inning, Boyer had his 1st HR; and in the 9th inning, Neal added his 9th HR. Belt had his 3rd and 4th doubles since being promoted to the upper minors. Belt, who had had just three hits over his previous five games, now has a .371/.429/.700 line in 70 AB since his promotion. Guzman, the 26-year-old former top prospect of the Dodgers who is now with the Orioles, had his 21st and 22nd HRs.
Westcott had the unusual line with more HRs and ERs (which arguably shows one of the flaws with determining which runs are "earned"). He had yielded just 2 HRs over his previous three starts. In his four Eastern League starts, he still has yet to allowed more than 2 ER. Sisco struck out five of his twelve batters for his 1st save.
A+: San Jose lost to High Desert 5-3
(with all but one run in the game scored in the 6th inning)
San Jose: SP Ryan Verdugo: 3.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K
Peguero remains red hot for the Giants, with three more hits raising his AVG to .317. He also had his 36th SB. Monell had his 10th HR, with half that total coming this month when he has hit .377/.462/.649 in 77 AB. EME, the 27-year-old ex-Giants prospect, has hit .370/.417/.493 through 138 AB since joining the Mariners organization.
A bullpen game? Verdugo pitched 3.0 scoreless, hitless IP in the first start of his pro career after 60 career relief appearances. He was the scheduled starter.
A-: Augusta defeated Greensboro 6-1
Augusta: DH Nick Liles: 3 for 4, BB, SO, SB
Augusta: RF Ryan Lollis: 2 for 4, HR, SO
Greensboro: C Kyle Skipworth: 0 for 3, 3 SO
Augusta: SP Jorge Bucardo: 8.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K
Augusta: RP Zach Wheeler: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER--1 WP
Greensboro: SP Chad James: 3.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 3 BB, 3 K--1 WP
Leading off, Liles reached base four times, raising his OBP to .363. He also had his 20th SB (against 7 CS). Lollis had his 2nd HR. He also had 2 HRs last year in the NWL. After beginning the series with the Olympic rings (5 SO in 5 AB), Skipworth, whom the Marlins selected sixth overall two years ago, got the hat trick in just three plate appearances to end the series. He did have a couple multi-hit games in between, though.
Bucardo had perhaps the best start of his career, allowing three hits but facing the minimum 24 batters in 8.0 IP. Wheeler, the Giants' top prospect in the minors, was not able to finish the shutout. Bucardo and Wheeler combined for an 18/2 GO/FO line. James, whom the Marlins selected eighteenth overall last year, had one of his shorter starts of the year. He has a 4.40 through sixteen starts.
ssA: Salem-Keizer defeated Everett 6-4
Salem-Keizer: Chris Lofton: 2 for 4, BB, SO, 2 CS
Salem-Keizer: LF Ryan Scoma: 2 for 3, 3B, 2B, 2 BB
Salem-Keizer: SP Kevin Couture: 5.0+ IP, 8 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
Salem-Keizer: RP Jake Dunning: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 5 K
Scoma, the Giants' 36th round selection out of UC Davis a year ago, reached base in all four plate appearances, including his 1st triple and 9th double. Hitting .328/.382/.464 through 125 AB, he has been perhaps the Volcanoes' best hitter this year. Lofton, the Giants' ninth rounder this year, reached base three times, but he has also been caught stealing four times in the last three games. He now has a 8/4 SB/CS line through his first 22 pro games.
Couture had another effective start, despite just 1 K. He had a 10/3 GO/FO line as his ERA remains below 3.50 Dunning continues to pile up the strikeouts, this time striking out five of his eleven batters.
R: Giants defeated Cubs 5-1
Scottsdale: 2B Carlos Willoughby: 3 for 4, 3B, SO
Scottsdale: RF Rafael Rodriguez: 2 for 3, BB, CS
Scottsdale: SP Lorenzo Mendoza: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
Scottsdale: RP Kendry Flores: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 K
Raf-Rod, presumably the top prospect on the rookie Giants squad, reached base three times. Willoughby, who had his 3rd triple, was one of two other rookie Giants with two hits each.
After the rookie Giants had not played in a couple days, Mendoza and Flores, who both have been members of the rotation this year, each pitched a couple scoreless innings before five relievers were given an inning each.
DSL: Giants defeated Marlins 7-5
Dominican: C Luis Vasquez: 2 for 4, HR, 2B, SO
Dominican: SP Luis Angeles: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 3 BB, 7 J--1 HR, 1 WP
Vasquez (19.4 y.o.) had his 2nd and 5th double, helping to get both his OBP and SLG above .400 through 85 AB. Angeles (20.7 y.o.) had his second straight sub-par start, raising his ERA to 2.86.