Minor League Roundup: Bumper Crop

This edition of Minor League Roundup features a pair of Farmers, a top prospect knocking on the door, a defensive wizard having a good day with the stick and a control artist silencing the best lineup in the Eastern League.

Mookie Meter

Double-A Portland’s stud second baseman just keeps on doing it. Mookie Betts’ on-base streak is up to 50 games, and he collected two more hits and a walk on Wednesday in the Eastern League’s only game.

 

International League (AAA)

All games were rained out

Pacific Coast League (AAA)

Joc Pederson

Joc Pederson, cf, Albuquerque (Dodgers): The Dodgers wunderkind was at it again on Wednesday. Pederson thwacked three hits, including his sixth homer of the season. He’s hitting .398/.504/.663 in 26 games and is neck and neck with Gregory Polanco for the title of outfielder who is most knocking on the door of the big leagues.

PCL Notes: Mets righthander Noah Syndergaard struck out seven in as many innings for Las Vegas. He allowed four hits and a run (unearned) in his best start of the season … Not a prospect, but Brewers righty Mike Fiers has been on a crazy run. He struck out 11 on Wednesday for Nashville and has 34 punchouts over his last three starts. Scouts who have seen him say his command and deception have improved, leading to the run of dominance.

Eastern League (AA)
Severino-Gonzalez-2014-ck
Severino Gonzalez, rhp, Reading (Phillies): Gonzalez won’t overpower you with his stuff by any means. He’ll cut the ball to death, pound the strike zone, and keep you off-balance with his array of average offspeed pitches. That approach, however, has worked for him. He held down the Eastern League’s best lineup, Portland, on Wednesday, with seven innings of five-hit, one-run ball. His ERA sits at 3.67, although even that number is a little bloated thanks to a trainwreck in his previous outing. Gonzalez has surrendered three or fewer earned runs in each of his other five starts.

Southern League (AA)

Erisbel Arruebarrena, ss, Chattanooga (Dodgers): The defensive wizard has nine games under his belt at Double-A, and Wednesday was his finest day at the plate. Arruebarrean went 2-for-4 with a double, his first career triple and scored twice. So far, the numbers aren’t great. He’s got just seven hits in his first 37 at-bats, and has fanned 15 times. He received a five-year, $25 million contract from the Dodgers in February.

SL Note: Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw rehabbed with Chattanooga on Wednesday, presumably his final tune-up before heading back to Los Angeles. He allowed two runs (one earned) on six hits and two walks over five innings. He struck out nine.

Texas League (AA)

Kaleb-Cowart-2013-bm

Kaleb Cowart, 3b, Arkansas (Angels)Cowart collected four hits on Wednesday, including a double. He scored twice and drove in two runs. Despite the nice afternoon, it’s been a little bit of a rough start for Cowart. He’s hitting .250/.313/.318 in the first month, and he has just one home run. He’s a fine defender, but the switch-hitter needs to work on selectivity and has holes in both of his swings.

TL Notes: Rangers second baseman Rougned Odor cracked his fourth home run of the season for Frisco. Teammate Ryan Rua collected two more hits and boasts a .358 average … Padres righty Matt Wisler struck out five over as many innings for San Antonio … Cardinals outfielder James Ramsey slugged his sixth home run of the season for Springfield, a three-run blast … Royals third baseman Cheslor Cuthbert clubbed two home runs on Wednesday for Northwest Arkansas and has three for the season.

California League (Hi A)

Kyle-Waldrop-2014-bm

Kyle Waldrop, 1b, Bakersfield (Reds): You can’t stop Waldrop. The 22-year-old collected three more hits on Wednesday, moving his slash line to .406/.458/.547 for the season. He’s on a seven-game hitting streak and is 14-for-his-last-30, including three doubles (two on Wednesday night) and a home run.

Cal League Notes: Recently activated Athletics righthander Michael Ynoa allowed a run on two hits in his only inning, but still collected his first win of the year for Stockton … Diamondbacks third baseman Brandon Drury collected two more doubles on Wednesday for Visalia, giving him 10 for the year … Padres righthander Zach Eflin struck out six in 6 2/3 innings and lowered his ERA to 2.80 for Lake Elsinore … After a disaster five days ago, Dodgers lefty Julio Urias pulled a 180. The advanced 17-year-old struck out five over three perfect innings for Rancho Cucamonga against Inland Empire.

Florida State League (Hi A)

Max Kepler, cf, Fort Myers (Twins): Kepler was a perfect 2-for-2 with a triple, two runs, two RBIs and two walks. He also stole a base and threw out a runner from center field. He’s spent time at first base in his career but has worked exclusively as an outfielder this season. Despite the good afternoon, Kepler is hitting just .222/.312/.358. He’s bulked up since signing and has an above-average approach with two strikes.

 

FSL Notes: Recently activated Pirates righthander Tyler Glasnow walked seven in two innings against Fort Myers … Mets lefthander Steve Matz struck out five in as many innings for St. Lucie … Marlins righthander Trevor Williams struck out seven over seven innings for Jupiter … Brewers right fielder Michael Reed was 4-for-5 on Wednesday for Brevard County and stole two more bases, boosting his FSL-best total to 14.

Carolina League (Hi A)

All games rained out

South Atlantic League (Lo A)

Avery Romero, 2b, Greensboro (Marlins): Romero collected three hits and scored a run on Wednesday against Greenville. And while the day was nice, the numbers this month aren’t where you’d want them to be for an offensive-minded second baseman. His overall line is just .270/.305/.360, and he has just seven extra-base hits in 100 at-bats.

 

SAL Notes: Marlins reliever Matt Milroy struck out five over as many innings for Greensboro on Wednesday. He’s got 30 strikeouts in 22 1/3 innings this year …  Rockies center fielder David Dahl hit his fifth home run of the season for Asheville … Pirates shortstop JaCoby Jones notched three hits for West Virginia, including a double, in a doubleheader at Kannapolis.

Midwest League (Lo A)
Buck Farmer (Photo by Mike Janes).

Buck Farmer, rhp, West Michigan (Tigers): No, he’s not on our Tigers Top 30 Prospects list. Yes, he’s a 23-year-old in low Class A. But the numbers are hard to ignore. He whiffed a dozen on Wednesday and has 30 strikeouts over his past 20 innings. Scouts who’ve seen him say he’s sitting in the low-90s and has touched as high as 96 mph.

MWL Notes: Indians center fielder Clint Frazier didn’t have a problem with Farmer. He collected two hits, including his second triple of the year for Lake County … Dodgers center fielder Malcolm Holland continued one of the stranger seasons of the year. He stole his minor league-best 21st base on Wednesday as part of a 2-for-5 day with a double, two runs, two RBIs and a walk for Great Lakes. He’s got more walks (23) than he has hits (18) and has an overall slash line of .220/.387/.256 … Buck wasn’t the only successful Farmer on Wednesday. Great Lakes DH Kyle Farmer was 3-for-5 with two doubles, two runs and three RBIs.