Rays down on the farm July 3: Colome back with Durham

After his big league cameo last week, Alex Colome was back with the Bulls - Mitchell Layton

His start Wednesday was much better than his last time out with Durham at the end of June

First of all, congratulations to the four Durham Bulls headed to the AAA All-Star Game hosted by Durham in a couple weeks: Mikie Mahtook, Mike Montgomery, Merrill Kelly and Wilson Betemit.

Even though he's not yet 16, it was confirmed that the Rays will be signing Dominican shortstop Adrian Rondon for $3.3 million in four days.  This is an interesting development because teams are not allowed to negotiate until a player turns 16, and I have complete confidence that teams absolutely will not break that rule.

They were able to sign Dominican outfielder Jesus Sanchez though.  He's probably a left fielder when it's all said and done, but he has a patient approach and can hit a bit.

Wednesday saw Ryne Stanek easily set a career high in strikeouts, but he also allowed four runs in six innings.  In nine starts, he's allowed 23 runs (18 earned), and 19 of them have come in just four of his starts.  He's allowing over a hit an inning, but the .351 BABIP could be a culprit.

Josh Sale's .646 OPS this year is underwhelming, even considering he just missed an entire season.  It was pointed out to me that he's actually hitting competently against righties with a .262/.365/.390 line with a 14% walk rate and 27.9% strikeout rate.  It's his line against lefties that leaves a bit to be desired: .119/.161/.153 with 4.8% walk rate and 38.7% strikeout rate.

In his previous two seasons, he was actually a better hitter against same side pitching.  I've got nothin' here.  We're still talking a small number of plate appearances, but that is really, really bad.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (47-41)

After giving up an early run, Alex Colome was solid in Durham's 5-3 win over Gwinnett.  Two batters into the game, he allowed a solo home run, but that would be it for the Braves against Colome.  He allowed a baserunner here or there, but Gwinnett really wouldn't threaten again.  He exited after seven innings, having only allowed the one run on six hits and two walks with six strikeouts.

It didn't take long for the Bulls to even the game.  Justin Christian's home run tied the game in the first, and Jayson Nix hit an RBI double an inning later to give Durham a lead they wouldn't lose.  In the fifth, Mikie Mahtook hit a three run home run to set a career high and provide plenty of insurance.  A ninth inning error by Nix helped prolong the game and allowed two unearned runs to score, but Steve Geltz eventually ended the game after two inherited runners scored.  Christian and Robby Price both reached base four times with three hits and a walk.

Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (6-8)

Montgomery was dominated by Tennessee in their 7-0 lossVictor Mateo allowed all seven runs on 10 hits and a walk in five innings with three strikeouts, and five of the runs were scored in the second inning that put the game out of reach quickly.  The Biscuits only had three hits, all of which were singles.  Jake Hager hit two of them.  Former Rays draft pick Pierce Johnson threw 7.1 scoreless innings, and he struck out five.

Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (3-11)

Charlotte blew another late lead in their 7-6 loss to St. LucieCasey Weathers was called on to save a 6-5 game, but he didn't come particularly close.  A single and double put two runners into scoring position with no outs, and a wild pitch tied the game.  After a groundout, Maxx Tissenbaum's passed ball put the Mets in front.  Charlotte went down quietly with a 1-2-3 ninth inning.

Josh Sale's solo home run in the second opened the scoring, and the Stone Crabs added a pair of runs later in the inning for a quick 3-0 lead.  Leonel Santiago quickly lost that lead though by allowing four runs in the next half inning.  Three were unearned, but it was because of his error.  Down 5-3 in the fifth, Tissenbaum doubled home a pair of runs to tie the game, and they retook the lead an inning later with a two out RBI hit by Patrick Leonard.  Leonard had three more hits, and Tissenbaum led a trio of Stone Crabs with two.

Class A Bowling Green Hot Rods (4-9)

Ryne Stanek struck out 12, but he gave up all four runs in Bowling Green's 4-2 loss to Lake County.  It's the second time this year a pitcher tied the Hot Rods single game strikeout record after Jaime Schultz did so earlier in the season.  Unfortunately, the Captains got to him just enough to deny him a win.  He allowed his first run in the third, and Clint Frazier's solo home run in the sixth extended Lake County's lead to 4-2.  Stanek finished with four runs allowed on six hits and a walk in six innings with 12 strikeouts.

The Hot Rods only had four hits, three of which came from the top two hitters in the lineup, Juniel Querecuto and Kean Wong.  Lake County conceded their first run in the fourth on a groundout, and the second Bowling Green run scored on a wild pitch.  Bowling Green had nine strikeouts and no walks.  Colton Reavis struck out four in two innings.

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (13-5)

Hudson Valley was suspended.

Rookie Princeton Rays (7-6)

Princeton was off.

Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (8-3)

The GCL Rays overcame an early deficit to beat the GCL Twins 4-3.  Down 3-1 in the eighth, Oscar Sanay doubled, and he came home to score on a double by Bill Pujols.  An inning later, Sanay came through again.  After three straight two out walks, Sanay's double scored two runs to put the Rays ahead for the first time since the top of the first.  The Rays only had four hits, but they did walk seven times.

They needed some long relief after starter Jose Alvarado was bounced early.  He was charged with all three Twins runs in the first inning on a hit and four walks in .2 innings with two strikeouts.  Joselito Cano provided that relief, only allowing an inherited runner to score in 5.1 innings, and he struck out six.  Mike Franco got the win in his pro debut with a pair of strikeouts in two scoreless innings of relief.

CLICK HERE FOR ALL BOX SCORES

Star of the day- Andrew Friedman sinking $3.3 million into Rondon is a huge risk, but it could have a huge reward.

Goat of the day- Montgomery never had a chance.

Today's games (probables courtesy of milb.com)

Durham v. Gwinnett 7:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Mike Montgomery (8-1, 3.28) v. Gus Schlosser (4-3, 4.31)

Montgomery @ Tennessee 7:15 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Mike Colla (3-9, 5.64) v. Eduardo Figueroa (0-0, 5.51)

Charlotte v. St. Lucie 6:30 PM (Radio stream)
Blake Snell (1-4, 6.20) v. Luis Cessa (5-5, 4.43)

Bowling Green @ Lake County 7 PM (Radio stream)
Bruedlin Suero (0-1, 1.29) v. Jordan Milbrath (2-8, 3.45)

Hudson Valley v. Brooklyn 7:05 PM (Radio stream)
Oscar Armenta (1-0, 5.54) v. TBA

Princeton @ Johnson City 7 PM (Radio stream)
Brent Honeywell (0-0, -.--) v. Steven Farinaro (1-1, 1.74)

GCL Rays v. GCL Twins 12 PM
TBA v. TBA

*Listed as TBA on milb.com

Scouting the opposition

Gwinnett Braves
40-46 (2nd in IL South)
Offense: 362 R (11th) .715 OPS (9th)
Pitching: 4.17 ERA (10th) 1.43 WHIP (10th)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Cody Martin (11), 3B Edward Salcedo (12), OF Joey Terdoslavich (15), OF Todd Cunningham (23), RHP Aaron Northcraft (25), RHP Juan Jaime (27), RHP James Hoyt (30)

Tennessee Smokies (Cubs)
10-4 (1st in SL North)
Offense: 368 R (4th) .701 OPS (8th)
Pitching: 3.56 ERA (3rd) 1.33 WHIP (5th)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP C.J. Edwards (3), OF Jorge Soler (5), 3B Christian Villanueva (13), RHP Corey Black (15), RHP Ivan Pineyro (21), RHP Zach Cates (27), OF Rubi Silva (29)

St. Lucie Mets
9-3 (1st in FSL South)
Offense: 408 R (2nd) .750 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 3.94 ERA (8th) 1.38 WHIP (8th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Gavin Cecchini (9), RHP Michael Fulmer (14), RHP Gabriel Ynoa (15), RHP Cory Mazzoni (16), RHP Domingo Tapia (19), RHP Matt Koch (24)

Lake County Captains (Cleveland)
9-4 (T-1st in MWL East)
Offense: 331 R (15th) .678 OPS (14th)
Pitching: 4.15 ERA (11th) 1.31 WHIP (9th)
Top 30 Prospects: OF Clint Frazier (2), SS Dorssys Paulino (6), RHP Dace Kime (16), OF Anthony Santander (20), LHP Luis Lugo (21), RHP Mitch Brown (24), 1B Nellie Rodriguez (27)

Brooklyn Cyclones (Mets)
11-7 (2nd in McNamara)
Offense: 70 R (12th) .636 OPS (12th)
Pitching: 2.74 ERA (3rd) 1.15 WHIP (3rd)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Amed Rosario (7)

Johnson City Cardinals
8-4 (1st in APP West)
Offense: 73 R (3rd) .742 OPS (3rd)
Pitching: 3.15 ERA (3rd) 1.34 WHIP (6th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Oscar Mercado (19)

GCL Twins
4-7 (3rd in GCL South)
Offense: 54 R (5th) .661 OPS (11th)
Pitching: 3.94 ERA (9th) 1.42 WHIP (10th)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Amaurys Minier (24)

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