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Minor League round up, August 23

Recapping Tuesday’s action from the Giants Minor League affiliates.

Andrew Knapp in the batter’s box
Catcher Andrew Knapp had 2 home runs for AAA Sacramento on Tuesday
Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

For the final time this year, all eight of the San Francisco Giants Minor League Baseball affiliates were in action on Tuesday. Let’s jump into it.

Link to the 2022 McCovey Chronicles Community Prospect List (CPL)

All listed positions are the positions played in that game.

AAA Sacramento (51-67)

Sacramento River Cats beat the Reno Aces (Diamondbacks) 11-1
Box score

A home run happy day in Sacramento, and catcher Andrew Knapp led the charge, bopping 2 balls over the fence for a grand total of 5 RBI.

Knapp has been dynamite since joining the Giants organization, hitting 24-78 since joining Sacramento, with 7 home runs and 5 doubles, good for a 1.013 OPS and a 143 wRC+. He’s a fabulous depth piece as a catcher, and I’d expect the Giants to try and hang on to him for next year.

Also homering were second baseman Jason Krizan, who bumped his OPS to .820 and his wRC+ to 99, and third baseman Ford Proctor, who bumped his numbers to .854 and 114, respectively. The Giants sure do have some depth in AAA.

Shortstop Dixon Machado had one of his best games for the River Cats, hitting 3-4 with a double.

On the pitching front it was the 3rd AAA appearance for RHP Ronnie Williams since the Giants signed him, and by far his best, as he allowed just 1 hit, 1 walk, and 1 run in 4 innings, while striking out 4. LHP Andrew Vasquez made his 2nd appearance since getting claimed off of waivers, and he struck out the side while allowing a hit in a scoreless inning.

He’s on the 40-man, so expect him in San Francisco one of these days.

AA Richmond (56-58)

Richmond Flying Squirrels beat the Akron RubberDucks (Guardians) 8-5 (10 innings)
Box score

It’s always an exciting day when LHP Kyle Harrison (No. 4 CPL), the team’s top pitching prospect by a mile, makes an appearance. But this was one of his rougher outings of the year, as the lefty gave up 6 hits, 3 walks, and 4 runs in just 4.2 innings of work, albeit with 7 strikeouts.

The strikeout numbers continue to be phenomenal — he’s K’ing 13.4 batters per 9 innings, after 18.3 in High-A to start the year — but the Giants will want to see the walks come down, as he’s now issuing 4.4 free passes per 9 innings.

A nice outing from RHP Ryan Walker, who gave up 1 hit and 1 walk in 2.1 scoreless innings, with 4 strikeouts, bringing his ERA to 2.90 and his FIP to 3.29.

And RHP Melvin Adon struck out 2 in 2 perfect innings as he looks to climb his way back into the fold. Great to see.

Not much on offense. Center fielder Shane Matheny, who recently returned to Richmond after a brief Sacramento stint, had a 3-hit day, while second baseman Brett Auerbach (No. 28 CPL) hit 1-3 with 2 walks.

High-A Eugene (69-43)

Eugene Emeralds beat the Tri-City Dust Devils (Angels) 9-2
Box score

An awesome day in the batter’s box for the Emeralds, who had 15 hits and 5 walks. Only 1 player in the lineup failed to reach base multiple times!

Could highlight pretty much everyone, but I’ll stick with a few players. The big hit came from first baseman Robert Emery, who had a 3-run home run to accompany a walk.

Emery has seen time at High-A, AA, and AAA this season, and currently has a .720 OPS and a 111 wRC+ in Eugene ... and had even better numbers in a larger sample in Richmond. He doesn’t belong in the same sentence as the Giants top catcher prospects, but he’s certainly making a name for himself this year.

Speaking of those catcher prospects, Patrick Bailey (No. 9 CPL) hit 3-5, giving him a 5-game hitting streak. He has a .911 OPS in August, which has brought his season number up to .730 and his wRC+ to 106.

And on the note of 3-hit days, second baseman Jimmy Glowenke (No. 43 CPL) hit 3-5 with a pair of doubles. He’s been so much better since returning from injury, and now sports a .703 OPS and a 96 wRC+. And on the note of people coming back from injury, shortstop Marco Luciano (No. 1 CPL) has picked up where he left off, hitting 2-4 with a double and a walk in this one, raising his OPS to .872 and his wRC+ to 140.

Very odd start for RHP Jake Wong, who gave up 9 baserunners in 4 innings, but somehow allowed only 1 run while striking out 6. Not a pretty way to do it, but it lowered his ERA to 4.83, and his 3.80 FIP is much better.

Low-A San Jose (63-52)

San Jose Giants lost to the Modesto Nuts (Mariners) 4-0
Box score

Pretty bad game for the Baby Giants. The pitchers issued 9 walks and a hit batter, but it was a nice outing from RHP Ben Madison, who struck out all 3 batters he faced, giving him 37 strikeouts in 20.2 innings.

RHP Eric Silva (No. 38 CPL) struggled with walks but continued his odd season, allowing 2 hits, 4 walks, and 1 run in 4 innings, with 3 strikeouts. It brought his ERA down to 5.77, while his FIP sits at 4.89. But his strikeout to walk ratio — 98 to 35 in 82.2 innings — is darn good for a 19-year old.

Bad offensive game. Third baseman Yorlis Rodriguez was the “star,” hitting 2-4 with a double, raising his OPS to .751 and his wRC+ to 89.


ACL Giants Orange (18-37) beat the ACL Giants Black (37-17) 2-1
Box score

It was the final day of the regular season in the ACL, and while the Giants Orange got the better of their counterpart in the finale, it’s the Giants Black team that will march onto the playoffs.

This one was all about the pitching, as it was scoreless at the end of the scheduled 7 innings ... all 3 runs that scored were the Manfred Men, and nobody had an extra-base hit.

For the winning Giants Orange squad, RHP Gerelmi Maldonado (18, 2020 J2) had a nice start, striking out 5 in 2 scoreless innings, and allowing 1 hit and 2 walks. It gave him a 2.27 ERA, a 3.86 FIP, and 59 strikeouts to 19 walks in 39.2 innings. A solid first season in rookie ball.

Also excellent work from RHP Brayan Palencia (19, 2020 J2), who gave up 0 hits, 0 walks, and 1 unearned run in 3 innings of work, striking out 4. His numbers aren’t great (4.33 ERA, 4.95 FIP), but he’s ending the season strong.

And RHP Hayden Birdsong (20, 2022 6th-round) struck out the side in a perfect inning. He’s faced 19 batters and allowed just 2 of them to reach base (both singles) while striking out 12.

On the other side, LHP Esmerlin Vinicio (No. 40 CPL, 19, 2019 J2) had one of his top starts of the year, allowing 5 baserunners in 5 scoreless innings, with 6 strikeouts. He struggled mightily in Low-A, where he spent much of the year, but has found his groove again in Arizona.

Tough days for 2 recent draftee hitters. Giants Black designated hitter Reggie Crawford (21, 2022 1st-round) struck out in all 4 of his plate appearances, while Giants Orange catcher Nomar Diaz (18, 2022 14th-round) hit 0-2 with a strikeout, and is now 0-12 with 5 strikeouts to start his career. His only time reaching base was by getting hit.

DSL Orange (26-32)

DSL Giants Orange beat the DSL Cardinals 5-1 (7 innings)
Box score

Final game of the season for the Giants Orange team, which did not make the playoffs. A couple of nice offensive days as center fielder Lazaro Morales (18, 2021 J2) hit 3-3 with a walk, while designated hitter Jose Alifonso (18, 2021 J2) hit 1-2 with 2 walks. Both batters stole a base, with Morales improving his OPS to .818 and his wRC+ to 123, and Alifonso to .529 and 65, respectively.

A nice outing to end the year for RHP Jose Rojas (18, 2020 J2), who struck out 3 in 3 scoreless innings, giving up just a walk. Tough year for him — he had a 6.02 ERA and a 4.61 FIP, with low strikeout numbers — but a good ending.

DSL Black (22-38)

DSL Giants Black beat the DSL Twins 6-3 (7 innings)
Box score

The DSL Giants season is officially over, as the Giants Black team missed the postseason as well. But first baseman Guillermo Williamson (18, 2021 J2) went out on a high note, hitting 2-3 with a pair of doubles to bump his OPS to .770 and his wRC+ to 108. Decent debut season for him.

Also a nice final game for third baseman Wueslly Lespe (19, 2019 J2), who hit 1-2 with a double and a walk, giving him a .732 OPS and a 108 wRC+. Looking forward to seeing both of them in the ACL next year.

Not much on the pitching front. RHP Mauricio Estrella (18, 2021 J2) gave up 6 baserunners in 4 innings with just 3 strikeouts, but only 1 of his 3 runs was earned, lowering his ERA to 3.29. He also had a 3.26 FIP, so a nice season for him.

Home runs

AAA Andrew Knapp 2 (11)
AAA Jason Krizan (8)
AAA Ford Proctor (4)
High-A Robert Emery (1)


After making one appearance in the ACL, veteran reliever Ken Giles, a free agent signing, has joined AAA Sacramento. This comes after exciting RHP prospect Cole Waites was promoted.

And shortstop Will Wilson (No. 18 CPL), who played in 7 games after a promotion to AAA before an injury, has been reinstated but heads to AA based on the logjam in Sacramento.

Finally, DSL LHP Ricardo Estrada failed a drug test.

Wednesday schedule

Sacramento: vs. the Reno Aces (Diamondbacks)
Richmond: @ the Akron RubberDucks (Guardians)
Eugene: @ the Tri-City Dust Devils (Angels)
San Jose: @ the Modesto Nuts (Mariners)
ACL Orange: Season over
ACL Black: Off
DSL Orange: Season over
DSL Black: Season over