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SF Giants Minor Lines, 5/31

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Uh, excuse me, Mr. Suarez? Did you get the "All Dominant Pitching Performances Week" memo we sent out? I'm sure you were on the distribution list. I wonder if I sent it to Albert by mistake? bcc: Chris Heston

If Monday's games were a Memorial Day party, then Tuesday night was "back to work with a hangover" day. And nobody got the full hangover effect more than the Greenjackets, who at least managed to walk away a weary victor (at the expense to a few batting lines)

HIGHLIGHTS: Chris Shaw HR'd an doubled. Cristian Paulino and Skyler Ewing struck out 3 of the 4 batters they faced.

EDITOR'S NOTE: MiLBtv is having some trouble archiving video today, so we're pretty video light unfortunately, not that there were a ton of highlights to show anyway on this day. I might add in a couple things later on if they become available.

Sacramento lost at El Paso Chihuahuas (Padres), 8-3

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

CF

Gorkys Hernandez

5

2

3

1

0

0

1

0

1

.268

.345

.364

SS

Ramiro Pena

5

1

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

.333

.394

.457

3b

Mitch Delfino

4

0

2

0

0

0

0

1

0

.291

.376

.398

C

Andrew Susac

4

0

1

2

0

0

0

0

2

.250

.317

.365

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Chris Heston L 1-5

7.0

9

6

6

1

1

2

0

0

4.36

Braulo Lara

1.0

2

2

2

0

1

1

0

0

4.09

Facing former big leaguer Jeremy Guthrie (who we might remember from a little ditty I like to call Game 7 of the World Series), the RiverCats offense did whatever the opposite of bending but not breaking is. They were constantly on base, and rarely scoring.  Sacramento hitters outhit the Chihuahuas 12-11 and touched up Guthrie for 9 hits and 2 walks in his 6 innings of work, but outside of Gorkys Hernandez' third HR of the year they couldn't push across the runs. The swift-footed, strong-armed Hernandez hasn't exactly blazed a trail through PCL pitchers, but he could yet play a part in the Giants OF mix this year.

Chris Heston went up against the PCL's most prolific offense in 2016 and held them mostly in check for the first five innings. But the dam broke in a 4-run sixth, punctuated by a three-run HR to the light hitting Jose Pirela, one of three HRs the RiverCats coughed up in the game. Heston continued to display a mysterious lack of command, particularly when it comes to first pitch strikes. Facing a season high 29 batters in the game, Heston managed to get to 0-1 against just half of them, pitching from behind throughout the evening.  It's curious: Heston used to be a plus command guy with iffy stuff, but somehow in the winter of 2015 he made some kind of Fasutian bargain that seems to have upped his stuff but taken away his command. Baseball's a weird game.

The star of the night was the Padres #3 prospect, former 1st round pick (and college teammate of Chris Stratton's) Hunter Renfroe who went 2 for 4 with a double and a two-run HR.  I suspect he'll be showing up in SD sometime this year, undermining the purity of the Giants' Hunter Monopoly, in a most unwelcome fashion.

* * *

Richmond lost to Bowie Bay Sox (Orioles), 10-0

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

3b

Christian Arroyo

4

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

.280

.311

.396

LF

Austin Slater

4

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

2

.321

.416

.500

DH

Tyler Horan

4

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

3

.280

.328

.439

RF

Hunter Cole

3

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

1

.231

.295

.329

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Andrew Suarez L 1-2

4.1

10

8

6

2

3

0

0

0

5.96

Jake Smith

2.0

0

0

0

1

0

0

1

0

5.29

Ray Black

0.2

3

2

2

1

1

0

0

0

7.85

Yeah. So..... this game happened.

I'm not over sure what there is to say about it. The Squirrels had 4 hits.  Starter Andrew Suarez surrendered 10 hits in less than 5 innings of work. He was on his way to surrendering a cycle in the 5th inning alone (having started the inning single, double, groundout, walk, triple) when he was relieved for the night.

Like many young pitchers before him, Suarez is finding the landing in AA a bit bumpy, going up against the many many former cup of coffee big leaguers and triple and double A vets that litter EL lineups.  The Bowie lineup, which is traditionally vet heavy and a strong offensively throughout, gave him a good testing. Suarez now has four starts in AA, with two of them being quite good and the other two looking exactly like this: out in the 5th with 10 hits and 6 ER on his line.  The biggest thing he seems be learning is that AA hitters don't have the same swing and miss in their game as Cal league lineups, and they can spoil a decent amount of pitchers' pitches. After posting a 50/11 K/BB rate in 52 Cal League innings, Saurez has just a 16/6 ratio in 22 innings in the EL. His K% so far (SSS alert) has dropped nearly in half with the promotion.

So lessons to keep learning for the young lefty. Let's try to find a nice moment for him to take out of his night.

In his first start since becoming an adult, Christian Arroyo went 0 for 4 and made his 7th error of the year to let in two unearned runs.  After a dreadful slump for the first half of the month, he finished the month of May with a .271/.291/.416 line.

* * *

San Jose lost to Lancaster Jet Hawks (Astros), 9-4 in resumption of 4/8 suspended game

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

1b

Chris Shaw

5

1

2

2

1

0

1

0

3

DH

Jose Vizcaino, Jr.

4

2

1

1

0

0

1

1

1

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Sam Coonrod L 5-2

4.0

6

4

2

1

7

0

0

0

1.45

Jeff Soptic

2.0

3

3

3

1

2

1

1

0

13.50

Dusten Knight

1.2

1

1

1

2

4

0

0

0

5.40

Christian Paulino

0.1

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0.00

San Jose beat Lancaster Jet Hawks (Astros), 4-1 in 7 inn

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

CF

Ronnie Jebavy

3

1

1

4

0

0

1

0

0

.229

.295

.356

DH

Steven Duggar

2

0

2

0

0

1

0

1

0

.278

.389

.494

1b

Chris Shaw

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

.314

.380

.605

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

DJ Snelten, W 3-4

7.0

5

1

1

2

7

0

1

1

3.76

On what was supposed to be San Jose's first off day since May 9, the rains of April came home to roost, as the Giants were forced instead to play a one game series against Lancaster. We should definitely spare some empathy for the poor JetHawks as well, who were forced by the Cal league overlords to travel up to San Jose for a partial DH on what was supposed to be an offday between a home series in Lancaster that ended up Monday and a road series at Inland Empire that begins tonight. Yes, to restate that, the JetHawks, rather than an off day followed by a nice little hour's drive from Lancaster to San Bernadino, got to sandwich two different 6-8 hour bus rides and a double header into that 48 hour window instead. Good luck with that JetHawks!

Anyway, resuming the suspended game from April 8 made for some comical statistical quirks. For instance, Sam Coonrod ended up "starting" games on back to back days, and struck out 7 in both! That certainly helped his K rate, though his ERA got nudged up a tiny bit. Chris Shaw hit his 1st HR of the year! And ended the game hitting .222. Weird. Jose Vizcaino, Jr. also hit his 1st HR of the year. The difference, of course, is that Vizcaino's came back on April 8, and since then he's hit just one more and generally struggled through a very difficult Cal league campaign. Shaw actually did hit a HR yesterday and a double. In fact for the day itself, he came to bat 6 times, hit a Hr a double and a walk and struck out just once.  This is actually from the previous day, but since we're lacking a video feed for this game, we'll have to use a body double

The HR was Shaw's 12th and moved him to within one of the league leader Travis Demeritte.  Shaw leads Demeritte by 40 points of SLG. A point to note about this. Travis Demeritte absolutely has a ton of raw power. But he also plays in a home park that has a perpetual 40 mile an hour wind howling out towards the fences, while Shaw plays in a home stadium that not only is the best pitching environment in the league, but very specifically suppresses LH power. The context is making the achievement all the more notable. If it weren't for the fact that I doubt he'll spend the entire summer in San Jose, I'd say Shaw might be able to make a run at Adam Duvall's club record of 30 HRs in a season.

In the night cap, the Giants got their offense from one very big swing of the bat, when Ronnie Jebavy uncorked the team's first Grand Slam of the season.

That was all the support DJ Snelten needed, as the big left-hander went pole to pole, recording the Giants first CG since 2012! How's that for an eye-opening stat? Does anybody remember the immortal Justin Schumer? He was the last SJ starting pitcher to manage the feat, which is kind of amazing given that 7 inning games are not that uncommon in the league.

Curveball specialist Dusten Knight had a pretty good outing in the first game, but the Giants had to be disheartened that he couldn't get the final out of the 9th inning, as he suddenly lost the strike zone and walked the bases loaded, running up too high a pitch count for the outing. That forced the team, with a second game looming, to bring in Cristian Paulino to finish things out, which he did by striking out the only batter he faced. (This would not be the only position player pitching appearanced of the night!). Fortunately, Snelten kept things from getting worse for the tired staff with his effort.

Couple final notes from Joe Ritzo on the amazing month that just was, and a concerning wrinkle in the starting rotation:

That note on Jordan, given his long injury history and his somewhat disappointing campaign thus far, is more than a little disconcerting.

* * *

Augusta won at Kannapolis Intimidators (White Sox), 6-5 in 17 inn

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

2b

Jalen Miller

8

1

2

0

0

0

0

0

1

.272

.292

.382

RF

Seth Harrison

7

1

2

0

0

0

0

1

0

.250

.328

.375

DH

Miguel Gomez

7

1

1

1

1

0

0

1

0

.333

.377

.482

3b

Kelvin Beltre

8

1

1

1

0

0

0

0

5

.228

.298

.338

C

Matt Pare

7

0

2

2

0

1

0

0

2

.176

.263

.294

CF

Johneshwy Fargas

4

0

1

1

0

0

0

3

1

.375

.524

.375

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Logan Webb

5.1

8

3

3

2

3

0

0

1

6.21

Connor Kaden BS

2.2

3

2

1

0

1

0

0

0

5.08

Jake McCasland

3.2

1

0

0

3

4

0

1

1

1.85

Heath Slatton

1.1

1

0

0

1

2

0

0

0

3.52

Ryan Koziol W 3-2

2.0

2

0

0

1

1

0

0

0

2.70

Skyler Ewing, S 1

1.0

1

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0.00

Ooh boy! The Greenjackets began the day announcing that they were losing another starting pitcher as LHP Grant Watson hit the DL. They ended the night with a 1b on the mound nailing down the dave with a knuckleball. They used every reliever they had on the team other than Tyler Cyr and Caleb Smith, both of whom had pitched the night before. And with one exception they used all of the relievers last night for multiple innings.

But it's all smiles when you walk away with a 17 inning victory. C Matt Pare played the hero, catching all 17 innings AND knocking in the winning run, following a Jean Angomas double with a clean single up the middle.

Long long games can, of course, take a real toll on a player's stat sheet, and nobody had a more miserable night than Kelvin Beltre, who struck out 5 times on the night. I don't even think there's a name for that!

This season (and last) surely hasn't gone the way Skyler Ewing would have wished, as he's spent very little time on the active roster. But where there's a knuckleball, there's a way?

You have to believe that Augusta will need to get some fresh arms, stat! One clue to where help could come from lays in the post-game tweets, as Mac Marshall is clearly traveling with the club. That could mean he's about ready to come back. Otherwise, they'll need to dip into the well of XST guys like Dom Mazza or Nolan Riggs.

Or they could seek arms from alternative sources:

* * *

Alright, new month. New times. San Jose starts another crucial series with Visalia with a chance to climb into a tie for first place with a win tonight. And Augusta, who've won four straight, can reach the .500 mark for the first time since April 22.

Today's Pitching Matchups:
Sacramento: Ty Blach vs. Daniel McCutchen
Richmond: Dan Slania vs. David Hess (Orioles #18 propsect), and Matt Gage vs. Stefan Crichton (creator of Jurassic Park)
San Jose: Jose Reyes vs. TBD
Augusta: Cory Taylor (please throw many many innings tonight, Cory) vs. Chris Comito

Oh one more for the fun of it. You can't see it on the original play, but they get the replay on the action anyway. Check out this gun from Junior Arias.