Minor League Recap: Games of May 2, 2014

Wish we had a better photo of Aplin; looks like we'll be needing it - Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Minor League Recap: Games of May 2, 2014

AAA Oklahoma City RedHawks: 3-1 win over Omaha (KCR)

-> Jon Singleton: 1-for-3, BB, solo HR
-> Andy Simunic: 1-for-3, BB, 2B, RBI
-> Jonathan Meyer: 1-for-3, BB, R
-> Ronald Torreyes: 1-for-3, RBI
-> Domingo Santana: 1-for-4, R
-> Gregorio Petit: 1-for-4
-> Carlos Perez: 0-for-3, BB

SP David Martinez: 3.0 IP, 1 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 0 K
RP Richard Rodriguez: 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 4 H, 0 BB, 2 K (win)
RP Jason Stoffel: 2.0 IP, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 BB, 2 K (hold)
RP Josh Zeid: 1.0 IP, 0 ER, 0 H, 0 BB, 0 K (save)

Martinez allowed a first-inning run, but the pitching locked it down after that. Just a little fun note; the opposing starter was Brett Tomko, anyone remember him? Hasn't been in the Majors since a little cup of coffee with the Rangers in 2011. 41 years old now and still grinding with the hopes of a shot in the Majors. Gotta respect that.

Home run #10 on the season for Singleton, though other than the occasional long ball and walk, he's cooled off significantly in the last couple weeks. He's struck out just four times in his last seven games though, so that's something. Four strikeouts for Santana in his last six games, and he's hitting .351/.400/.595 over his last ten. His walk rate is a good bit lower so far this year, and it's likely the more veteran pitchers with better command in AAA are challenging him by hitting spots more consistently. Still, he's holding his own very well so far, despite his age.

And given the turmoil in the Astros' bullpen recently, I thought I'd finish off with some cumulative season lines for some of the relievers down in AAA:

Rhiner Cruz: 8.1 IP, 2.16 ERA, 3.24 BB/9, 10.80 K/9
Darin Downs: 13.0 IP, 5.54 ERA, 2.77 BB/9, 10.39 K/9
Chia-Jen Lo: 10.2 IP, 1.69 ERA, 3.38 BB/9, 10.13 K/9
Jason Stoffel: 13.2 IP, 3.29 ERA, 4.61 BB/9, 10.54 K/9
Josh Zeid: 10.1 IP, 2.61 ERA, 2.61 BB/9, 7.84 K/9

AA Corpus Christi Hooks: 8-6 loss to Midland (OAK)

-> Andrew Aplin: 2-for-3, HR, 2 BB, 2 RBI, 2 R
-> Tyler Heineman: 2-for-4, 2B, R
-> Matthew Duffy: 2-for-5, R
-> Preston Tucker: 1-for-3, BB, 2B, R, 2 RBI
-> M.P. Cokinos: 1-for-4, 2B, RBI
-> Joe Sclafani: 1-for-5, R
-> Chris Epps: 0-for-4, BB

SP Troy Scribner: 3.0 IP, 1 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 4 K
RP Michael Dimock: 3.0 IP, 5 ER, 7 H, 0 BB, 1 K (loss)
RP Andrew Robinson: 2.0 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 2 K

Corpus managed a couple of runs in the top of the ninth to make it interesting, but they couldn't get the other two they needed, bullpen just coughed up too many runs.

Scribner didn't though. Remember last week at this time? He had just made his first appearance in AA after having not pitched above short season Tri-City, undrafted free agent? One run in five innings with five strikeouts in AA so far. Mildly interesting, yes?

Andrew Aplin has an eight game hitting streak going; the last five have been multi-hit games (hitting .524 during them). .412/.532/.711 with two bombs, three doubles, a triple, eight walks and just five strikeouts in his last ten games, just blazing hot. .320/.456/.454 on the year for him now, 25 walks and just 15 strikeouts in 27 games. Now that's a nice start.

Idle thoughts on Duffy; right-handed pitchers are eating him alive, but he's massacring southpaws (.382, .971 OPS). He was a solid SS in college, but is now a plus 3B. If he can handle 2B, SS and corner OF as well, might be a role for him on a bench somewhere in the future. Has some legit, decent pop, too.

Heineman got off to a slow start, but he's on a six game hitting streak now, and hasn't struck out since April 18. Keep working.

A+ Lancaster JetHawks: 6-3 win over San Jose (SFG)

-> Teoscar Hernandez: 3-for-4, SB, R
-> Anthony Kemp: 2-for-3, BB, SB, RBI, R
-> Roberto Pena: 2-for-3, 2B, R
-> Carlos Perdomo: 2-for-3, BB, RBI
-> Brandon Meredith: 2-for-4, 2B, RBI, R
-> Rio Ruiz: 1-for-4, 2B, R, 3 RBI
-> Carlos Correa: 0-for-3, BB, R

SP Mike Hauschild: 5.2 IP, 3 ER, 7 H, 1 BB, 7 K (win)
RP Brian Holmes: 3.1 IP, 0 ER, 1 H, 1 BB, 3 K (save)

Captain Correa returns! He was DHing tonight, not surprising given that it was an arm issue that landed him on the bench for a while. They may just keep DHing him for some period of time and let the arm come back slowly.

Hernandez had kind of fallen off a cliff recently (fifteen strikeouts in nine games entering tonight), so this was nice to see. Despite such a hard stretch, he still has a respectable .793 OPS on the season. Nine steals and six triples as well, definitely has some running ability.

After a little mini-slump near the end of April, Kemp has seven hits in his last four games. On the year, he has more walks (17) than strikeouts (13), and is 12-for-16 (75%) in stolen base attempts. His .433 OBP is the fourth best mark in the California League. Ruiz has reached base via hit or walk in his last eleven games straight. He hasn't struck out for three straight games now.

A- Quad Cities River Bandits: 5-3 win over Beloit (OAK)

-> Ronnie Mitchell: 2-for-4, R, 2 2B
-> Brett Phillips: 2-for-4, BB, 2 R
-> Tyler White: 2-for-4, RBI, R
-> Tanner Mathis: 1-for-2, SB, RBI, R, 2 BB
-> Conrad Gregor: 1-for-5, RBI
-> Jack Mayfield: 1-for-5, RBI
-> Brian Holberton: 0-for-3, BB

SP Evan Grills: 6.0 IP, 3 ER, 10 H, 1 BB, 2 K (win)
RP Kevin Comer: 3.0 IP, 0 ER, 2 H, 0 BB, 1 K (save)

The game was tied at three apiece after five innings, but QC pushed a run across in each of the next two innings, and the bullpen held.

Boy, Brett Phillips almost looks like Low-A has nothing left for him. Probably not the case, but he's not just being good, he's being great. He's struck out twice in his last ten games. Twice. .319/.405/.489 on the season. So far, this guy has to be the big breakout player of the year, right? I've been intrigued by him, but I certainly didn't expect this.

Speaking of breakouts, the sample is smaller than most other guys, but Holberton is adjusting to full-season ball nicely. He's hitting .311/.392/.533 with six XBH, six walks and just five strikeouts in 14 games.

Kevin Comer, out of nowhere (well, probably out of Extended Spring Training, technically). Wouldn't it be nice to see him finally start to live up to some of the hype that came with him as the PTBNL in the Blue Jays deal? Not that he was touted as an ace, but he was a high draft pick and certainly has real talent. Still just 21 years old, so by no means too old for the level.

Tomorrow's Scheduled Starters

AAA: Bobby Doran vs. John Lamb
AA: Luis Cruz vs. James Needy
A+: Kyle Westwood vs. Chris Stratton
A-: Edison Frias vs. Kyle Finnegan

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