AA Dish: Cunningham Slugs Two HRs

The best Double-A action yesterday was in the Texas League, where Aaron Cunningham, Dexter Fowler and Kila Ka’aihue all had big games.

TEXAS LEAGUE

Prospect Of The Day

The Athletics have improved their farm system substantially in the past season, adding top prospects like Brett Anderson, Adrian Cardenas, Gio Gonzalez and Michel Inoa. Of course, a team should improve its farm system dramatically when it trades the contracts of Dan Haren, Nick Swisher and Joe Blanton. One of the players the A’s added in the last year was outfielder Aaron Cunningham, who came to Oakland along with Anderson in the deal that sent Haren to the Diamondbacks. While it’s easy to get lost in the system the A’s have now, Cunningham made plenty of noise yesterday for Midland, going 4-for-6 with two home runs and a double, giving him 11 homers on the season. Cunningham, who is now batting .315/.384/.500 in 308 at-bats while splitting time between center and left field, last had a multi-homer game in 2006 while playing for low Class A Kannapolis as a White Sox farmhand.

Prospect Nuggets

It’s hard to ignore what Tulsa center fielder Dexter Fowler (Rockies) has done this year. Serving as the DH yesterday, Fowler went 3-for-5 with his eighth triple and his 27th double of the season, bringing his line to .337/.430/.514 in 395 at-bats … Northwest Arkansas first baseman Kila Ka’aihue (Royals) should be in Omaha soon after the season he has had. Yesterday the 24-year-old went 3-for-5 and hit home run No. 26, putting his numbers at .312/.464/.624 in 282 at-bats with twice as many walks (80) as strikeouts (40) … Twenty-year-old Midland righthander Trevor Cahill (Athletics) walked four batters in five innings and allowed three runs, but only one run was earned and he struck out four.

What To Watch For Today

There’s a good pitching prospect matchup in Northwest Arkansas, where Naturals righthander Daniel Cortes (Royals) squares off against Springfield righty Jess Todd (Cardinals).

EASTERN LEAGUE

Prospect Of The Day

High-caliber pitching prospects is not a strength of the Blue Jays farm system, but they at least have Brett Cecil. Yesterday the New Hampshire lefty hurled six scoreless innings and struck out six. Cecil walked one batter and allowed just three hits, lowering his Double-A ERA to 2.55 in 77 2/3 innings with an 87-23 K-BB ratio and a nice 2.07-to-1 groundout-to air out ratio. While New Hampshire teammate Travis Snider has protected his spot as the top prospect in Toronto’s system, Cecil has thus far lived up to his No. 2 ranking.

Prospect Nuggets

Don’t want to pitch to Matt Wieters (Orioles)? I don’t blame you. The Bowie catcher drew four walks yesterday, growing his Double-A line to .330/.440/.560 in in 91 at-bats with 18 walks and 16 strikeouts … Akron left fielder Matt LaPorta (Indians) has gotten off to a slow start with his new organization. Yesterday LaPorta went 1-for-4, bringing his slash stats to .212/.250/.288 in 52 at-bats … Trenton righthander Mark Melancon (Yankees) struck out four and didn’t allow a walk or a run in his three-inning relief outing, which lowered his ERA to 1.81 in 49 2/3 innings.

What To Watch For Today

Righthander Carlos Carrasco (Phillies) pitches for Reading at Harrisburg.

SOUTHERN LEAGUE

Prospect Of The Day

Yesterday was a low-key day for prospects in the Southern League, but a few Carolina (Marlins) players turned in solid performances. Righthander Gaby Hernandez limited Jacksonville to one run in five innings. Hernandez struck out five and walked two, giving the 22-year-old a 4.30 ERA in 23 innings since his demotion from Triple-A Albuquerque.

Prospect Nuggets

Carolina second baseman Chris Coghlan reached base twice with a walk, bringing his season line to .305/.388/.439 in 374 at-bats … Carolina left fielder John Raynor reached base three times (a single and two walks), then stole three bases, giving him 39 steals in 47 attempts and averages of .309/.400/.479 in 340 at-bats.

What To Watch For Today

Righthander Ryan Tucker makes his first start for Carolina since his demotion from the big leagues.

Minors | #Daily Dish

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