Pretty easy to identify the highlight for the day: the bus ride home!
HIGHLIGHTS: Jonah Arenado reached base 4x w HR; Stephen Woods, Jr. allowed 1 run in 6 IP; Diego Rincones 3 hits w/ double, triple;
Sacramento lost to Tacoma Rainiers (Mariners), 12-0
splitting their four game series, 2-2
The Rainiers had 10 XBH including three HRs; the RiverCats had five hits. Watcha gonna do?
In fairness, this is an offense that has lost Christian Arroyo and now Jarrett Parker to injury and Austin Slater, Ryder Jones, Jae-Gyun Hwang, Kelby Tomlinson, and Mac Williamson to promotion while gaining only Chris Shaw from AA (who, one would presume is not going to be seeing many fastballs over the plate in the coming weeks). That’s life in AAA for sure, but it’s a lot of offensive depth to have to make up for. Scoring is likely going to be an issue for this team in the second half.
Jose Flores wasn’t quite as sensational in his second PCL start, but he was certainly solid.
A couple 94s from Flores in 2nd thru 4th innings. But still mostly 90-92. The curveball is a major swing-and-miss pitch. #RiverCats— Giant Potential (@giant_potential) July 9, 2017
There’s much more on Flores coming from Conner so you’ll want to be checking out his stuff.
Final line for RHP Jose Flores: 5ip, 4h, 3r, 3bb, 5k. 86 pitches, 52 strikes. Video of every pitch up tomorrow. #RiverCats— Giant Potential (@giant_potential) July 9, 2017
Right now, the RiverCats are undermanned and no doubt tired. A three-day All Star break is likely welcomed in all corners of the clubhouse. But it’s hard to see much help coming from anywhere for this team, 18.5 games back in their division and sporting the third worst record in the PCL.
Before leaving, we will offer our daily Chris Shaw update:
We Need To Talk About Chris Shaw's Facial Hair pic.twitter.com/wI4zUuYBxF— Doug (@moonwalkmcfly) July 9, 2017
Richmond lost at Bowie BaySox (Orioles), 6-3
losing their three game series, 1-2
CJ Hinojosa is on fire! Over 7 starts this month, Hinojosa has collected 15 hits including three three-hit games. He’s also walked three times against just two Ks. After tuning up with a tidy little June line of .315/.360/.424, Hinojosa is hitting an insane .484/.529/.774 through the first third of July. His defense, at both 2b and SS, has looked strong as well. This is a man who isn’t looking forward to an All Star break. The Giants have certainly perfected the secret sauce for developing contact oriented middle infielders. If only that was the only challenge!
Nice hustle CJ, but uh, never make the third out of an inning at 3b, please! Cardinal rules must be observed. Baby Yaz covers serious ground by the way, so that ball was definitely well struck.
Dylan Davis had himself a nice series as well. One day after picking up 5 RBIs with a two-run homer and two run scoring singles, Davis helped the Squirrels build an early lead with this wall-banging double:
Like Sacramento, Richmond gets a break for the next three days. Possibly they can get a little roster help after that; we’ll see. Like Sacramento, they have the third worst record in the league at 36-51, though they’re just 10 games back in their division. They also have more Indy League emergency pickups than genuine prospects at this point. It’s a rough time in the upper levels of the system just right now.
San Jose Bats
San Jose has become a heavily HR-dependent offense in 2017, and with the HRs drying up of late, they had hit a real rough patch for scoring runs. Over their previous five games, the Giants had scored just six runs. They did manage to crowd half of that production into a single 3-2 win. But, offensively, this week has a been a bad patch of road.
Entering the 6th inning last night it was more of the same, as they had scored just one run on the night and trailed the Nuts 4-1. But then that old rascal friend the HR showed up again from his wanderings.
First a bolt from the blue from the quick bat of Jalen Miller.
And then the big blast at the end of the inning, a three-run shot from Jonah Arenado that gave San Jose a stunning lead.
Despite handing out seven walks in the game, the arms managed to hold onto that slim lead. With Dylan Rheault doing his own special brand of high-wire act, surviving a leadoff triple in the 9th inning to nail down the save.
Miller and Arenado have both become somewhat frustrating prospects. Both have some truly exciting physical gifts. But both have struggled with approach, with pitch recognition and with basic bat to ball skills. You hope things click at some point, but as the .220 batting averages drag on and on it becomes harder and harder.
Jalen Miller’s season hasn’t been one of peaks and valleys, of hot streaks and cold. He’s been disappointingly consistent throughtout:
A very athletic, hard-working kid who’s really a joy to be around. But clearly some development leaps need to be made at the plate. Hopefully the clicks happen because his tools can play at the next level if the game skills can push him there.
And Arenado? On his second tour through the Cal league remains frustratingly inconsistent. Again, the approach really hurts him. Jonah just completed a month in which his batting average and OBP were both .226. That’s just not going to cut it, man. Zero walks and 27 Ks in a month? For the season, it’s 13 walks, 74 Ks. That’s an issue. That’s a killer issue.
Heath Quinn’s having a bit of a scuffle since returning from the DL with shoulder discomfort. Since his return he’s now 1 for 12 with 5 Ks. But on the bright side, he can do this!
John Burkett would be impressed!
Bryan Reynolds got one PA in the Future’s Game and drew a walk against a whole lot of 100 mph smoke. He did get several defensive chances and showed a nice strong, accurate arm from RF.
|Jose Vizcaino Jr.||1B||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||3||.231|
|Brandon Van Horn||SS||3||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.256|
Stephen Woods, Jr. matched up against the Colorado Rockies #2 prospect (and 4th overall pick last year) Riley Pint, a pair of hard throwing, sometimes command-challenged pitchers. And the duo lived up to their billing, collectively striking out 10 and walking 9 over their 10 IP. Woods got the better of it, though, going 6 full and allowing just one earned run.
His battery mate Skyler Ewing provided the support with a solo HR and an RBI single. It was Ewing’s 2nd HR in as many days. It’s been a long, long time since Ewing’s brilliant debut with Salem-Keizer, as he’s struggled through three difficult seasons in the Sally. Now 24 and making the tough transition to Catching he’s plugging away at the dream. I haven’t seen any reports on how his catching is doing, but he has cut his strikeout rate fairly significantly this year. Of course, he’s also on his third straight Sally campaign.
I can’t imbed, but if you follow the link provided here you can see footage of both Woods, Jr. and Ewing’s HR on the local sports roundup:
Salem Keizer Bats
|a- Logan Baldwin||PH-RF||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||1||.261|
|b- Michael Sexton||PH-DH||2||0||1||1||0||0||0||0||1||.333|
For the second consecutive game, the Volcanoes opened up with a five-spot in the top of the 1st inning. And for the second consecutive game, that wasn’t going to be enough for them to win and the offensive would have to keep working in the late innings.
Everett and Salem-Keizer are the two worst pitching staffs in the NWL, so it’s probably not too surprising that their series has been full of back and forth, high-scoring affairs with huge innings on both sides.
In this one, the Volcanoes jumped out front quick. An error and a walk set up the white-hot Ryan Kirby in the first inning and he cashed them both in with a 3-run HR, his second of the series. Over the four games in Everett, Kirby has gone 11 for 19 with two HRs, two doubles and 10 RBIs. After the first inning HR, the AquaSox apparently they’d seen enough of Kirby swinging the bat and walked him twice later in the game. Kirby’s now slashing .347/.417/.547 and leading the league in OPS.
Kirby’s blast was followed by four singles that produced two more runs. But within two innings, Julio Benitez had squandered the five-run lead and there was more work for the bats to do.
Manuel Geraldo has also been crazy hot lately and he would ultimately knock in the last two runs with a groundout and an infield single. SS Geraldo ended with two hits and a walk giving him a .356/.383/.446 line. He also stole his team leading 12th base (2nd in the league). Geraldo now leads the NWL in batting average with Kirby second and Ziegler fourth. Kirby and Ziegler are first and third in OPS.
Of course, repeating a short season level (and getting experience in full season ball) is a pretty significant advantage. Newcomers are helping too. Another two-hit game gave Bryce Johnson a .333 average and he stole his 4th bag, and Orlando Garcia is off to a hot hitting start as well. Johnson and Garcia were installed as the 2 and 3 hitters for this game and likely will stay near the top of the lineup.
A matchup of 10th overall pick Jo Adell and Heliot Ramos was providing the heat in the desert last night. And if Bill Mitchell, king of the Arizona back fields says these are two best prospects in the AZL, you better believe these are the two best prospects in the AZL.
Ramos went light on the highlights last night, but he didn’t leave the scouts in attendance totally without reward, blazing around the bases for his second triple of the year:
Heliot Ramos casual 4.56 turn and low effort 7.1 first to third on a triple here in Tempe— Chris Kusiolek (@CaliKusiolek) July 10, 2017
With nine XBH out of 13, Ramos is flashing a pretty sexy .875 SLG so far along with his perfect 4 SB/0 CS line.
For the second straight game the statistical star of the show was young OF Diego Rincones who finished a HR shy of a cycle with a walk, two RBIs and two Runs scored. Over his last two games, Rincones is now 8 for 9. Quite a rampage for the second youngest player on the squad (behind only Ramos).
Aaron Bond, the Giants’ 12th round pick out of Jacinto College, continued showing power, hitting his 2nd pro HR in the 1st inning to push the Giants out to a big 4-0 lead.
Jake Greenwalt, the 19 year old RHP taken in the 23rd round last year out of the famed Colorado High School ranks (seriously, they produce pitchers in CO, check out John Manual’s famed love for the phylum), made his fourth appearance of the year. He’s been a little hittable but is showing an excellent 13/1 K/BB ratio on the year so far, which is nice to see out of a somewhat projectible high school kid. Scouting report you ask?
Greenwalt is 88-91 with two-seam tail. Also using slider.— Bill Mitchell (@billazbbphotog) July 10, 2017
DSL Giants had weekly Sunday off
Today’s Scheduled Starters:
Sacramento: All Star Break
Richmond: All Star Break
San Jose: Madison Bumgarner vs TBD
Augusta: Raffi Vizcaino vs. Erick Julio
Salem-Keizer: Alejandro de la Rosa vs. Ryne Inman
AZL: Willy Yan
DSL: Aneudy Acosta
Hopefully Madison will take the step up from just feeling good to feeling good and looking good tonight. And Raffi tries to keep his season rolling right.
Couple of links before we go. Slade Heathcott is trying to have fun (which seems a great objective) and right back out on the front page colleague Jen Mac Ramos’ talks with Aramis Garcia: