Prospect Of The Day
A ray of light in an otherwise trying season, Rochester righthander Philip Humber (Twins) struck out a season-high 10 Scranton/Wikes-Barre batters, while walking just two, in the Red Wings’ 7-4 win yesterday. Rochester manager Stan Cliburn told the Democrat and Chronicle that the 25-year-old Humber, who allowed three runs on five hits in 7 2/3 innings, succeeded by pitching inside, establishing his fastball and setting up his plus curveball.
Scranton RHP Alan Horne (Yankees), Humber’s opponent yesterday, walked the first two batters of the first and then the second innings, leading to an early exit after 43 pitches, just 16 of which were strikes. His final tally: one inning, 10 batters faced, two hits, five runs, five walks and no strikeouts. Horne, who has twice spent time on the DL this season, told the Democrat and Chronicle: "I’m very concerned. My arm feels really uncomfortable, like it doesn’t want to work. But I feel no pain. It’s frustrating. It’s got to be a mental thing.’‘ . . . Rochester CF Jason Pridie (Twins) stole his 20th base of the season in going 2-for-4 with two runs, an RBI, a walk and two strikeouts . . . Still just 23, Norfolk RHP Hayden Penn (Orioles) has turned in consecutive seven-inning, two-run stints—while totaling nine strikeouts and two walks—as the snap on his curveball has returned and with it his efficiency.
What To Watch For Today
Syracuse LHP Ricky Romero (Blue Jays), the sixth overall pick 2005, makes his Triple-A debut at home against Scranton. In parts of three seasons at Double-A, he went 10-18, 4.97 with 199 strikeouts and 132 walks in 277 innings. Romero will be opposed by RHP Ian Kennedy (Yankees).
PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE
Prospect Of The Day
Tacoma catcher Rob Johnson (Mariners), a fourth-round pick from Houston in 2004, spent just 19 games in high Class A before being whisked to Triple-A to begin the 2006 season. In Johnson’s first two years there, the second of which entailed a job-share situation with Jeff Clement, he batted .252/.301/.348. He seems to have found his footing this season, going 4-for-4 yesterday with a home run (eight), a double (26), a walk, three runs and two RBIs. The 24-year-old backstop raised his averages on the year to .306/.374/.465 in 314 at-bats, and he’s nabbed 23-of-63 (37 percent) basestealers.
Portland CF Will Venable (Padres), who went 1-for-5, homered in his second straight game . . . Same thing for Memphis 3B David Freese (Cardinals), who now has homered in two straight games. He went 3-for-5 and cracked a three-run shot (18), one day after connecting for a grand slam . . . Las Vegas 3B Blake DeWitt (Dodgers) hit his first Triple-A home run, a ninth-inning, game-tying, two-run shot off Iowa righthander Jose Ascanio. The 51 lost in the 10th inning . . . Portland LHP Wade LeBlanc (Padres) tossed five shutout innings, striking out six, walking none and allowing just two hits.
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