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SF Giants Minor Lines 6/27

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A rare sight in Vegas and less than Bickford's best is still really really good.

Ugh! The spectre of TJ spares no organization. Two Giants' arms have recently gone done under the knife. I expected Agosta's news after he was reported leaving his last San Jose start with forearm tenderness, but Logan Webb's was an unexpected blow.

HIGHLIGHTS: Ty Blach throws CG Shutout; Gorkys Hernandez reaches base 4x with double, HR; Phil Bickford throws 5 one-hit innings with 7 Ks.

Sacramento beat Las Vegas 51s (Mets), 6-0

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

CF

Gorkys Hernandez

3

3

2

1

1

0

1

2

1

.296

.372

.408

C

Andrew Susac

4

0

2

4

1

0

0

0

0

.216

.317

.319

LF

Travis Ishikawa

5

0

2

1

1

0

0

0

1

.224

.307

.343

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Ty Blach W 7-5

9.0

6

0

0

0

6

0

0

1

4.23

There's rare; there's priceless; there's unicorn. And then there's the complete game shutout in Las Vegas. Ty Blach scattered six hits and no walks in shutting down the 51s at home in his best effort of the year, on a night when the temperature reached up to 107 degrees. Blach allowed just two base runners to reach 2b in the game, in a thorough domination of the Vegas bats. Coming off three consecutive starts in which he'd surrendered 14 runs in 16.2 IP, this had to be a great feeling for Ty. A fine running catch from LF Travis Ishikawa (which warms my heart just to type!) finished it off. It was Sacramento's first complete game of the year and gave Blach his team leading 7th Win.

Really brings across the magic of the moment, doesn't it? I wonder if there's a peak somewhere in the Sierras they could put that camcorder to get an even better view?

Blach was supported by a 4 RBI night from his Catcher, Andrew Susac, and a huge night from leadoff man Gorkys Hernandez, who reached base four times, had a double, a HR, and scored half the team's runs. Gorkys is putting the finishing touches on a scorching month of June in which he's batted .354/.427/.500. Yowza! The man wants back in the bigs!

* * *

Richmond lost to the Akron Rubber Ducks (Indians), 5-4

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

RF

Hunter Cole

4

1

2

1

2

0

0

0

1

.264

.259

.419

LF

Tyler Horan

2

1

0

0

0

0

0

2

1

.259

.387

.462

C

Steven Lerud

4

0

2

2

0

0

0

0

0

.176

.382

.560

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Dan Slania L 6-5

7.0

8

4

4

1

3

1

0

0

3.44

Tyler Mizenko

1.0

1

1

1

0

0

1

0

0

4.03

Matt Reynolds

1.0

2

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

0.00

Entering the bottom of the 9th, the Flying Squirrels had a total of 4 hits in the game, and two of them had come off the bat of the red-hot Hunter Cole who added two more doubles to his total. Cole, who, like Gorkys, is blasting thru the month of June, hitting .330/.385/.625. Cole has hit more XBH in the last 15 games than he did in the first two months of the season combined. Watch him put a jolt into this ball.

In the 9th, however, Richmond's offense creaked to life. Down 5-2, Tyler Horan sparked a comeback rally with a leadoff walk. Back to back singles from Brandon Bednar and Steven Lerud put the tie runs on base, and with two outs up came the EL's leading hitter Ali Castillo. Amazingly, this was the third game in the system in just the last week to end on a play at the plate, but this time the ending wasn't a happy one.

Dan Slania had his roughest start to date. He started by giving up a monster HR in the 1st to the Indian's #1 prospect, USF's own Bradley Zimmer (who could well end up being this year's version of the Mets Michael Conforto for the Indians this fall). Slania allowed the most hits and runs of any of his starts, and he surrendered runs in each of the first three innings. But he stuck around long enough to give the Squirrels staff 7 innings of work and kept the team in the game, leaving with the score 4-2.

Baseball Prospectus' Adam McInturff was on hand to get a look at Slania and he had this quick report:

So a pretty good day for watching the Indians' top two prospects (the 31st and 44th prospects on the BA 100). One started the game with a booming HR and the other shut it down with a rocket throw to home plate.

Matt Reynolds, the former Rockies and Diamondbacks reliever, got his first game action since signing with the Giants.

* * *

San Jose beat the Bakersfield Blaze (Mariners), 5-0

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

RF

Steven Duggar

4

1

3

1

1

0

0

0

0

.282

.387

.467

DH

Chris Shaw

4

1

1

1

0

0

0

0

2

.284

.358

.540

C

Ty Ross

2

0

1

2

0

0

0

1

0

.244

.309

.326

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Phil Bickford

5.0

1

0

0

3

7

0

0

0

1.64

Tyler Cyr

2.0

0

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

0.00

Happy Bickford Day! Friend of Minor Lines phibear35 got a great shot of Bickford warming up before the game that really shows you the tremendous arm speed Bickford generates in his motion:

It's really a WHIP snapping through the motion. Perhaps due to his long All Star break layoff, Bickford had in this game, probably the worst fastball command I've seen out of him this year. He missed up high with his fastballs frequently throughout the start, matching a career high 3 BBs and working from behind often in the night.

And the result of his lack of sharpness? He went five scoreless innings, struck out seven and allowed just one perfectly placed bunt single. Pretty tremendous.

In 11 IP in the Cal League, Bickford now has 20 Ks to 3 BBs and 3 hits, and 2 runs scored. Wasn't this league supposed to be more challenging? (famous last words, he said, but there'll be no comeuppance, you hear me baseball gods? No comeuppance!).

And not for nothing, Bickford showed impeccable timing with his Ks as he got the beer batter... twice!

San Jose has a third power arm for the back of their bullpen now, with Tyler Cyr joining Moronta and Martinez. Cyr, from just down the road in Fremont, CA, was the Giants 10th round pick last year out of tiny Embry-Riddle U in Florida. He's quickly engratiated himself to his new team, throwing 4 scoreless, hitless innings in two appearances, and striking out three.

Steven Duggar had the big night in support of Bickford, with three hits, including a double. He did get caught stealing for the 7th time this year (vs. 6 SB) and I have to say: Steven, diving from 20 feet out and belly-flopping to a near halt several feet before you reach the bag is not likely to be a successful base stealing strategy at the higher levels. Howzabout you just learn to slide? Meant with good intentions!

Chris Shaw had a tough night, striking out twice but he did single in a run. Shaw is having to get used to something that will no doubt be a constant torment to him in his career:

But back to Bickford, pitching coach Mike Couchee was Joe Ritzo's guest on the pre-game show last night, and he talked a good deal about Bickford as well as Jordan Johnson, Rodolfo Martinez, Reyes Moronta and other members of the staff.

And you can hear Bickford, himself, discuss his season here:

* * *

Augusta beat the Asheville Tourists (Rockies), 5-1

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

SS

Lucius Fox

4

0

1

1

0

0

0

0

0

.209

.259

.419

LF

Sharon Dunston Jr

2

2

1

0

1

0

0

1

0

.375

.387

.462

3b

Miguel Gomez

3

0

1

0

0

0

0

1

0

.353

.382

.560

DH

Dillon Dobson

3

0

1

1

0

0

0

1

0

.274

.310

.529

1b

Junior Arias

4

1

1

2

0

0

1

0

0

.311

.529

.459

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Grant Watson

3.0

4

0

0

0

2

0

0

0

3.95

Luis Pino W 1-0

5.0

3

1

1

4

3

0

0

0

4.50

Caleb Smith

1.0

0

0

0

0

3

0

0

0

2.28

Eight different members of the starting lineup had one hit apiece and four of them, the 2-5 hitters, added a walk. In addition, the Greenjackets took advantage of enough Asheville mistakes to scratch out a 5-1 lead. Augusta took a two-run advantage in the 3rd inning when Johneshwy Fargas singled and stole 2nd on a broken hit and run (his 13th SB), and then came home on a Lucius Fox grounder through the right side. After Fox was CS, Augusta was gifted the all-time gifted run, when Shawon Dunston was hit by a pitch, WP to 2b, and then came home on a two-out error by the SS. A two-run HR by Junior Arias in the 8th allowed Augusta a bit of breathing room in what had been a tight game throughout.

Augusta's beleaguered pitching staff received an extremely welcome addition, with Grant Watson's return from the DL. Watson threw a very efficient 3 innings before handing things over to the night's scheduled starter Luis Pino, who preceeded to tightrope his way through the next 5.

Caleb Smith finished the evening up in spectacular fashion, striking out the side. Smith has come very close to replicating his numbers from last year in the NWL in almost exactly the same number of innings. In 23.2 IP this year, he has a 37% K rate along with a 12% BB rate. Last year in 25.2 IP in Salem-Keizer the same numbers were 38% and 11%.

Along with Watson, Dillon Dobson also returned from the DL. Skyler Ewing and Adam Sonabend were placed on the DL to offset the moves.

* * *

Salem-Keizer lost to Tri-City Dust Devils (Padres), 7-2
losing their five game series, 2-3

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

LF

Gustavo Cabrera

2

1

0

0

0

0

0

2

1

.306

.359

.500

RF

Jean Angomas

4

0

2

0

1

0

0

0

0

.424

.441

.576

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Victor Concepcion L 1-2

3.0

6

4

4

3

2

0

1

2

5.40

Nolan Riggs

3.2

3

2

2

0

3

0

0

0

6.10

Cesar Yanez

1.1

3

0

0

0

2

0

0

1

0.00

For the second time in three starts, Victor Concepcion surrendered twice as many runs as he allowed last year in the DSL. And this time he did it in just 3 excruciating innings, in which little went right for him. He allowed 10 baserunners while getting just 9 outs, and also uncorked two wild pitches, both of which led to runs.  He allowed a leadoff triple before the crowd had found its seats, and immediately wild pitched the runner in for the first run. In the second inning, he walked three of the first four batters, rather amazingly coming out of the inning with just one run allowed (thanks to some dubious base running). And in his third and final inning, he surrendered hits to four of the first five batters of the inning (once again, coming out of it with the minimal damage, allowing just two runs). That was it for the night for Concepcion, who's had a rough transition to domestic ball.

The heretofore prolific Volcanoes offense couldn't bail the team out, as they went silent for the night, managing just six hits and three walks. The white hot Jean Angomas did add two more hits, including a double, but it was otherwise a listless night for the bats.

The whole thing added up to Salem-Keizer's first series loss of the young year.

Heath Quinn missed his second consecutive game since his two double night on Saturday and is perhaps nursing something. But our old friend Fla-Giant dug up a really nice article on Quinn and his development through the years, with a lot of great quotes.

* * *

AZL Giants lost to the AZL Cubs, 7-2

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

Other

CF

Roger Edwards

4

0

3

0

1

0

0

0

1

.333

CS (1)

LF

Chris Denorfia

2

0

1

0

1

0

0

1

0

.350

HBP, OFA

RF

Nick Hill

4

1

2

1

1

0

0

0

0

.500

OFA

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

Stephen Woods L 0-1

3.0

2

4

1

5

2

0

0

0

4.50

Stetson Woods

3.2

8

2

2

0

5

0

0

0

4.76

Jake Greenwalt

1.1

3

1

1

0

1

0

0

0

5.40

The Giants drafted a few guys this year with extreme power arms and little idea what to do with their stuff and Stephen Woods, their 8th rounder out of SUNY-Albany, is one of the most intriguing with real lights out stuff but extreme volatility. A 6th round pick out of HS by the Rays, Woods was plagued by walks throughout his college career. And that certainly has continued into his pro career, where he was walked 8 batters in his first 4 innings.

Jake Greenwalt was one of the few HS kids the Giants drafted this year (and one of the even fewer they're likely to sign). You can see footage that Conner shot of him here:

The AZL offense managed just 8 hits, five of them coming from 2015 draftee Roger Edwards (40th round out of Gulf Coast CC in Florida) and this year's 26th rounder Nick Hill (also from a tiny Florida school, Eckerd College). Chris Denorfia filled up the stat sheet, reaching base three multifarious times and throwing out a runner on the bases as he continues his "spring training."

* * *

DSL Giants beat DSL D-backs2, 7-2

Age

Name

AB

R

H

RBI

2B

3B

HR

BB

SO

BA

OBP

SLG

SS

18.1

Jose Rivero

5

3

3

1

0

0

0

0

0

.273

.385

.338

RF

17.0

Diego Rincones

3

1

1

1

1

0

0

1

0

.326

.375

.442

1b

17.1

Ricardo Genoves

3

0

1

2

1

0

0

2

1

.369

.446

.492

3b

17.2

Francisco Medina

4

1

1

1

0

1

0

1

0

.153

.315

.203

Age

Name

IP

H

R

ER

BB

K

HR

HB

WP

ERA

20.7

Norwith Gudino W 2-2

5.2

4

0

0

2

5

0

0

0

3.38

22.11

Orleny Quiroz

2.1

2

2

1

2

3

0

1

1

5.40

18.6

Jose Maita

1.0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

2.25

With five consecutive wins the DSL Giants are starting to drift up towards the top of their division. Most of their success is being driven by the offense, which is now fourth in the DSL in Runs and Batting Average, and sixth in OBP and doubles. And it's worth noting that sixth in the DSL is pretty fairly on the good side of things since the league has 42 teams.

The four players highlighted in the lines today all have something in common besides a good day at the plate on Monday. They are also sporting uncommonly good BB/K ratios so far this year, something you don't often see in the DSL and something that tends to be a red flag for players moving forward. The two league repeaters have shown marked improvement from last year. Both currently have better than a 1:1 BB:K rate after struggling to control the Ks last year. Jose Rivero had 18 BBs vs. 34 Ks in 137 AB last year but is currently at 13 BBs to 12 Ks. And Francisco Medina has improved from a godawful 12 BB to 55 K line last year to 13 BB and 11 K so far this year. Now that improved control of the strike zone hasn't so far shown up in much success for his batting line, but for a kid who showed that he had game power last year, an improvement in controlling the zone is a very nice step in the right direction.

Two of the youngest players on the team, Diego Rincones and Ricardo Genoves are showing that skill in their age 17 season which is even more impressive. Rincones has 4 BB to just 5 K in 43 ABs and Genoves (who leads the team in batting average) has 8 BB and 10 K in 65 ABs.

The pitching staff is pretty far down the team lists in most stats, but one thing they do do well is strike batters out, with a league leading 173. The staff leader in Ks is currently yesterday's starter who has 17 in 16 IP. But perhaps more impressive is the line of 18 year old Jose Maita, who has 12 Ks (vs 4 BBs) in just 8 IP.

* * *

Adalberto Mejia headlines the day's list of pitchers, and that's putting it kindly. This is like the time I saw Dylan "followed by Puppet Show."

Today's Pitching Matchups:
Sacramento: Mejia vs. Gabriel Ynoa
Richmond: Matt Gage vs. Michael Peoples
San Jose: Jose Reyes vs. Anthony Misiewicz
Augusta: Jake McCasland vs. Jesus Tinoco
Salem-Keizer: TBD vs. Tyler Mark (this should have been Hengerber Medina's turn so not sure what's going on there)
AZL: TBD
DSL:  Jonah Herrera

My apologies to all the very nice pitchers who I just called puppets. That was probably inappropriate.