There's no better way to start today's Easter minor league recap with a quick update on Jon Singleton, who's currently raking PCL pitching. Singleton hit his seventh homer of the season last night, and reached 23 RBI, good for tops in all of the minor league levels to date.
After George Springer's call up last week, there's been a lot of speculation that Singleton's call could some sooner rather than later; from what Jeff Luhnow has said, it seems like he's moved all-in on fielding the most competitive team available, and Singleton would probably represent a huge upgrade over Marc Krauss and Jesus Guzman at first base.
Singleton, however, is still quite young even for Triple-A and he's exhibiting some contact issues. He has struck out 22 times in 77 plate appearances, and he didn't hit well at all last year. Although fans have now moved to clamoring for Singleton to be promoted, it may be in the Astros best interest to wait a few more weeks to see how Singleton's hitting plays out in a larger sample.
AAA: Oklahoma City 6, Memphis (STL) 2
The Redhawks took this game over the Redbirds fairly easily, and the offense got some contribution from Robbie Grossman and Domingo Santana's two doubles apiece. Singleton hit his seventh homer, but also struck out three times. Left-hander Rudy Owens started for OKC and pitched five perfect innings, striking out four. Mike Foltynewicz pitched on the end of the tandem. He wasn't great, but his outing was an improvement on many others he's had so far this season with 3 innings, 5 hits, 2 runs and 3 K's, including a homer allowed to Cardinals prospect Oscar Taveras.
Robbie Grossman: 3-4, 2 2B, K
Ronald Torreyes: 3-4, 2B, 2 RBI
Jon Singleton: 1-4, HR (7), 3 K
Domingo Santana: 2-4, 2 2B
Enrique Hernandez: 0-4
Rudy Owens: 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K, 8/4 GO/FO
Mike Foltynewicz: 3 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, 3 K, 0 BB, 1 HR allowed, 2/2 GO/FO
AA: Frisco Roughriders (TEX) 6, Corpus Christi Hooks 0
The Hooks were blanked behind a strong 8-inning performance by Texas prospect Matt Harrison, a young left-hander...wait that Matt Harrison? Yes, Matt Harrison is actually a major league pitcher who has made an All-Star team and started a World Series game. So, the Hooks were shutout, but this is basically cheating right? Matt Harrison will be pitching in Arlington in a week probably, so I see this game as a wash for the Hooks hitters. The offense only collected three hits and saw Ross Seaton and Luis Cruz pitch in this game.
Nolan Fontana: 1-4, 2B
Jio Mier: 1-3 Andrew Aplin: 0-4, 2 K
Preston Tucker: 0-4, 2 K
Matt Duffy: 1-3
Telvin Nash: 0-3, 0 K(!)
Ross Seaton: 4.1 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 2 K
Luis Cruz: 3.2 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HR allowed
High-A: Lancaster Jethawks 7, High Desert Mavericks (SEA) 1
The Jethawks had an all-around impressive offensive performance last night, collecting nine hits, two homers from Brandon Meredith, and some action on the basepaths. The tandem of Vincent Velasquez and Kyle Westwood continued to dominate Cal League hitters, combining for three hits and one run allowed. An encouraging sign was Carlos Correa hitting the ball well, finishing the night a homer short of the cycle.
Tony Kemp: 2-4, SB(5)
Carlos Correa: 3-3, 2B, 3B, BB
Brandon Meredith: 2-3, 2 HR (4)
Danry Vasquez: 2-4, K
Vincent Velasquez: 5 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 4 K, 5:3 GO/FO
Kyle Westwood: 4 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 0 K, 10:1 GO/FO
A-ball: South Bend Silver Hawks (AZ) 7, Quad Cities River Bandits 6
The River Bandits fell to 7-9 on the season with this loss. Conrad Gregor continued to heat up at the plate, and catcher Brett Booth got his first at-bats of the season. Jandel Gustave and Kent Emanuel worked the tandem for QC. The defense really hurt the Bandits in this one, committing four errors and accounting for five unearned runs.
James Ramsay: 0-4, BB, K
Brett Phillips: 0-4, BB, K
Tyler White: 2-3, 2 BB
Conrad Gregor: 2-5, 2B
Brett Booth: 2-2, 2B, 2 BB
Jandel Gustave: 2.1 IP, 5 H, 6 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 3 K
Tyler Brunemann: 2.1 IP, 3 K
Kent Emanuel: 3 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HR allowed