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Minor Lines 4/30/18 - First Inning Highs and Lows

The first inning is a killer for Sacramento, but is a winner for San Jose.

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Hello from Richmond!

It’s your friendly neighborhood Kevin here, even if I’m not in your neighborhood right now. Can there be a friendly neighborhood Kevin if there’s no neighborhood?

It’s been a weird kind of season already, both in and out of the Giants system. But I thought I’d kick off today with one of the weirdest of the weird triple plays you’ll ever see…and that’s really saying something this season.

Anyways, in the Giants’ system, the day was defined a bit by first innings, and a bit by a pitcher trying to do everything except being his own reliever…and that cost him

Sacramento was defeated by the Las Vegas 51s (Mets), 9-5

Sacramento started their second-to-last ever road trip to Cashman Field with a resounding UFO crash of a game.

Tyler Beede just got absolutely pounded right out of the gate. The second pitch he threw was hit for a home run. After giving up a single, the third batter he faced also homered, and the fifth batter of the game tripled. While Beede did not get knocked out in the first inning, it was clearly one of his worst games at the Triple-A level. He gave up three home runs. The only time he’s given up more than that at Triple-A was in Las Vegas last year, when he gave up four home runs en route to eight runs allowed total and seven earned. He won’t miss Cashman Field when it’s gone.

The Sacramento offense had a few players get on-base multiple times. Orlando Calixte, who might be frustrated he didn’t get the call to go up to SF with Panik’s injury, went 3-for-4 with a double and a home run. Chase D’Arnaud, who has moved to second base in Alen Henson’s absence, had a three-hit game with a double.

Also, the rehabbing Hunter Pence was 2-for-4 with a walk in his third Triple-A rehab game. First baseman Kyle Jensen was 2-for-4 with a double himself.

Eury Perez threw out a runner in that first inning to help Beede. For Perez, that makes three outfield assists in six games played with Sacramento

The Las Vegas 51’s will move to a new stadium in Summerlin for 2019; Sacramento will be the last road team the 51’s will play in Cashman Field at the end of the year.

Richmond was defeated by the Altoona Curve (Pirates), 3-1

There was a lot of barking at the umpires at The Diamond today.

There was also a lot of yapping. And yipping. And woofing. And it might not all have been at the umpire…after all, it was Dog Day at The Diamond and the dogs were letting their presence be known. Unfortunately, the offense put up a dog of an effort to keep with the theme.

Let’s start with the good: Jordan Johnson. Johnson scattered three hits and two walks across 6.1 innings of work, and was barely hit hard at all. Johnson was working mostly off a fastball that sat 91-93 and touched 95 (by the stadium gun) and a slider in the 88-89 range. He didn’t get a lot of swing-throughs, and those he did were off the slider. He also had a curve that was a bit wild the few times he tried it, around 81-83.

As an observer, he looks like a future reliever, working mostly off that fastball slider. He’s not overpowering enough to be a closer, but he could be a middle-late inning guy if he can get more swing-throughs.

Also, #PitchersWhoRake! In his first at-bat, Johnson lined a home run over the left field fence, one of the only hard hit balls for the Squirrels all afternoon. It would also be their only run of the game, and not enough.

Unfortunately, his line shows two runs. He gave up his only hard hit ball (a double) with one out in the seventh, and that was followed with a walk. Caleb Simpson came in. The Curve jumped on Simpson early, hitting a double on the third pitch that Simpson threw that let the two inherited runners come in. One pitch later, a single plated a third run that went on Simpson’s record.

Will LaMarche came on for the final two innings, so new he didn’t have a name on the back of his jersey. LaMarche was making his Double-A debut for his pro career. He had made one appearance this year, in Triple-A Sacramento, giving up three runs in one inning back on April 17th. He’d pitched mostly in San Jose last season, with a 3.46 ERA in 30 games at that level.

Richmond’s hitters were flummoxed by Altoona’s J.T. Brubaker, a 6th round draft pick in 2015 who is repeating Double-A. He had a 4.44 ERA there last season, but seems to have figured things out. It felt like he got more than the seven strikeouts in his box score, as few of the Richmond hitters were getting off good swings. Both of the two-hit guys in the lineup, Luigi Rodriguez and Jerry Sands, had at least one weak-hit ball that found the right hole.

Miguel Gomez did get a double in the third off of Brubaker, a lined shot into right-center that the right fielder struggled to get a good track on. But even he was left without getting good hits.

One hitting note: Garcia did get a single in the ninth, but I noted he wasn’t pulling a lot of pitches. Three of his four balls in play went to right. I’ll want to keep an eye on this if I see him tomorrow, but I’d expect a hitter like him to be pulling the ball a bit more.

San Jose beat the Visalia Rawhide (Diamondbacks), 13-6

San Jose came pretty close to doing what happened to Sacramento. Johneshwy Fargas hit a home run to lead off the game (his first of the year), and San Jose jumped out to a five-run lead en route to a big-time win.

The top of the order was fantastic. Fargas ended up 3-for-5 with his first two home runs of the season. Although he’s only played 11 games, Fargas is now batting .433 with one strikeout against three walks, and eight stolen bases on ten attempts. Behind him, Jalen Miller was 3-for-5 with all singles. Miller had been 4-for-26 with three walks in his past eight games. Wander Franco, batting third, was 4-for-4 with two doubles, a walk and was 1-for-2 in stolen bases. Franco is now 7-for-9 with a walk in his last ten plate appearances.

Also of note, Jacob Heyward was 2-for-3 with a walk, as he continues to look good in San Jose. He has a 6-game hitting streak going, and has 13 walks to 11 strikeouts on the season. Gio Brusa had another multi-hit game, and has six walks to 24 strikeouts on the season. And Matt Winn was only 1-for-4, but his hit was a bases-loaded-and-clearing double.

Meanwhile, Raffi Vizcaino, had another mixed bag of a game. He had his high for strikeouts in a season (seven), while in his second-shortest stint (3.1 IP). He also had his season high in walks. He currently has 13 walks to 25 strikeouts in 19.1 IP. In relief of Raffi, Carlos Diaz went a season-high 3.2 innings and only gave up one run. It still raised his ERA (1.46 to 1.69), but it was another solid showing from the 24-year old. Dylan Rheault had another strong showing as well, and with two more strikeouts, he has 13 against three walks in 11.2 IP.

Augusta Had A Scheduled Off Day

The GreenJackets hit the road and will be in the OTHER Charleston, the state capitol named Charleston, West Virginia.

The talented GreenJackets are off to a 17-6 start, leading the SAL Southern Division by three games over the Rome Braves. West Virginia is 13-11, which is 5th in the 7-team Northern Division.

While the much ballyhooed prospect hitters are taking their time to adjust to full-season ball, the Jackets are being powered by some incredible pitching. Augusta’s 2.48 ERA is third in the league, with a league-leading four shutouts and a league leading 1.11 WHIP. Jason Bahr, Joey Marciano, John Gavin and Jose Marte have been the stars of the rotation, and even though Garrett Cave’s 3.50 ERA is the worst of the group, he’s shown a lot of promise.

And, about those prospect hitters:

  • Heliot Ramos has a .235/.309/.365 line, with 26 strikeouts and 6 walks.This day off helps after three straight hitless games. Ramos is also 1-for-6 in steal attempts.
  • Jacob Gonzalez is batting .259/.312/.400 with 28 strikeouts against 6 walks. The 19-year old had a 7-for-11 streak over three games, with a home run and a couple of walks before going 0-for-4 yesterday.
  • Malique Ziegler is not of the same draft pedigree (22nd round), but is batting .275/.405/.522 with 11 walks to 20 strikeouts and four home runs. The power won’t keep up, but the speedy star is definitely looking good so far this month. We’ll see if he can stay consistent all season.

Today’s Scheduled Starters

Sacramento: Matt Gage (!!) vs. P.J. Conlon (@ Las Vegas, 10:35 AM PT)

Richmond: Matt Gage vs. Dario Agrazal (vs. Altoona, 6:35 PM ET)

San Jose: Melvin Adon vs. Sam McWilliams (vs. Visalia, 6:30 PM PT)

Augusta: John Gavin vs. Travis MacGregor (@ West Virginia, 7:05 PM ET)

One of us is lying.

Matt Gage has only been at Double-A this season, so it’s less likely a Sacramento listing is the mistake, so we may be seeing a promotion tomorrow. Otherwise, both Adon and Gavin bare watching for Tuesday. Also, what’s with the Tuesday morning start time in Las Vegas? It’s not the final game of the series, so neither team is having to hit the road.