Oscar Hernandez is having his best (U.S. based) season with Bowling Green. His .261 average is pretty pedestrian, and he has some work to do on his plate approach, but he's showing nice power from a catcher once again. It feels like he's been around forever because of his big season in Venezuela that got him on the map, but he just turned 21 a month ago.
Oscar is better behind the plate though, and he's throwing 40% of attempted base stealers out this year. Yet Baseball America's survey of minor league managers did not recognize him as the best defensive catcher in the Midwest League. That would be teammate Armando Araiza (BA, $).
Triple-A Durham Bulls (67-62)
Wil Myers homered and helped lead Durham to a 10-5 win over Charlotte. After Charlotte erased a 4-0 deficit, Myers' two run home run in the seventh gave the Bulls another lead. An inning later, they added four insurance runs against former Rays prospect Frank De Los Santos. Ali Solis' three run homer accounted for most of that. Nick Franklin had three hits and stole his first base in the organization. Solis and Mike Fontenot had two hits.
Despite the early run support, Mike Montgomery was ineffective again. He allowed one batter to reach in each of the first three innings, but the Knights got to him in the fourth. In an inning that featured two wild pitches and an error, they scored four runs to tie the game and knock Montgomery out. He finished with four runs (three earned) allowed on four hits and three walks in 3.2 innings with three strikeouts. Josh Lueke allowed another run, but C.J. Riefenhauser struck out two in two perfect innings of relief.
Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (24-32)
After going up 1-0 early, Montgomery allowed seven straight runs in their 7-3 loss to Tennessee. Right after Luke Maile's double to score Cameron Seitzer, Mike Colla allowed five runs in the third inning. The first six batters of the inning, topped off by an Addison Russell double. He allowed a two run home run an inning later and finished with seven runs (six earned) allowed on 11 hits and a walk in four innings with three strikeouts.
Five innings after scoring the first run of the game, the Biscuits finally got back on the board in the seventh. Richie Shaffer led off with a double, and he eventually came home to score on a Hector Guevara sac fly. An inning later, Shaffer singled home another run. Shaffer reached base three times.
Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (27-26)
Blake Snell had strike zone problems, but Charlotte was able to beat Jupiter 4-1 in game one. He struck out four and limited the Hammerheads to just one run, but with three hits and four walks allowed, it probably could've been worse. Up 2-0 in the fifth, the Stone Crabs put the game away with a two run inning that included an RBI single by Maxx Tissenbaum. Johnny Field reached base three times.
Jupiter used a five run inning to come back in Charlotte's game two 6-5 loss. Holding a 4-0 lead in the fourth, Jaime Schultz fell apart in the fifth. Two hits started the inning, and a passed ball, wild pitch and error allowed two Hammerhead runs to score before Schultz finally got an out while conceding the third run. Jose Alberto Molina allowed two more to score, and a wild pitch by Ryan Garton in the seventh walked Jupiter off with a win. Schultz struck out three in 4.1 innings. Marty Gantt had two hits, and Granden Goetzman hit his first home run with Charlotte.
Class A Bowling Green Hot Rods (25-30)
Bowling Green hammered first rounder Nick Howard en route to a 10-4 win over Dayton. Oscar Hernandez hit a first inning two run home run to give the Hot Rods a 2-0 lead, and he hit the fifth of five consecutive two out singles an inning later to top off a four run inning. Howard settled in after that, and after he was taken out, Bowling Green added three more runs immediately against the Dragon bullpen. Of their 16 hits, only the Hernandez home run went for extra bases.
With the early run support, Isaac Gil made his best start since his first after moving to the rotation. He only allowed one run on five hits and three walks in five innings with four strikeouts. Stone Speer was charged with three runs, but only one was earned because of a Pat Blair error. Douglas Duran had four hits, and Alexander Simon had three.
Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (41-22)
Lowell gradually built up their lead in Hudson Valley's 9-1 loss. The Spinners scored in five of the first six innings, and Oscar Armenta allowed five runs (four earned) on nine hits in five innings with three strikeouts. In the ninth, Lowell added four more runs against Kyle McKenzie, but they were all unearned due to errors by Alec Sole and Casey Gillaspie.
Already down 5-0, the Renegades finally got on the board in the seventh. Jace Conrad doubled to lead off the inning, and singles by Bralin Jackson and Sole scored him. Hudson Valley actually had 10 hits, but they were 2/13 with runners in scoring position. Jackson had three hits, and Sole and Lee both reached base three times.
Rookie Princeton Rays (30-25)
Princeton was not especially close in their 11-0 loss to Elizabethton. The Twins scored a run in the first inning, but what really did the damage was the seven run fourth. Greg Maiso would be charged with seven runs (six earned) in 3+ innings, and Trevor Lubking allowed four in three innings. Thomas Milone had two of Princeton's six hits, all singles.
Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (28-22)
The GCL Rays were off.
Star of the day- It's been a really solid season for Oscar.
Goat of the day- Going into the All-Star break, Hudson Valley struggled against the league's worst pitching staff.
Today's games (probables courtesy of milb.com)
Durham is off
Montgomery v. Tennessee 8:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Dylan Floro (9-12, 3.69) v. Corey Black (5-7, 3.12)
Charlotte v. St. Lucie 6:30 PM (Radio stream)
Jared Mortensen (0-1, 3.38) v. Michael Fulmer (6-10, 3.97)
Bowling Green v. Lake County 8:05 PM (Radio stream)
Chris Kirsch* (9-6, 2.55) v. Jordan Milbrath (3-12, 3.77)
Hudson Valley is at the All-Star break
Princeton @ Elizabethton 7 PM (Radio stream)
Cameron Varga (0-1, 6.30) v. John Curtiss (2-1, 0.84)
GCL Rays are off
*Listed as TBA on milb.com
Scouting the opposition
Tennessee Smokies (Cubs)
30-26 (1st in SL North)
Offense: 554 R (4th) .715 OPS (5th)
Pitching: 3.69 ERA (5th) 1.33 WHIP (5th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Addison Russell (1), RHP C.J. Edwards (3), CF Albert Almora (4), RHP Pierce Johnson (6), 3B Christian Villanueva (13), RHP Corey Black (15), RHP Ivan Pineyro (21), RHP Zach Cates (27), OF Rubi Silva (29)
St. Lucie Mets
28-27 (T-4th in FSL South)
Offense: 587 R (2nd) .730 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 4.19 ERA (9th) 1.41 WHIP (10th)
Top 30 Prospects: SS Gavin Cecchini (9), RHP Michael Fulmer (14), RHP Domingo Tapia (19), RHP Matt Koch (24)
Lake County Captains (Cleveland)
28-26 (3rd in MWL East)
Offense: 532 R (10th) .703 OPS (6th)
Pitching: 4.32 ERA (14th) 1.36 WHIP (11th)
Top 30 Prospects: OF Clint Frazier (2), OF Dorssys Paulino (6), RHP Dace Kime (16), OF Anthony Santander (20), LHP Luis Lugo (21), RHP Mitch Brown (24), 1B Nellie Rodriguez (27), 1B Mike Papi
32-24 (1st in APP West)
Offense: 272 R (3rd) .702 OPS (3rd)
Pitching: 2.85 ERA (1st) 1.19 WHIP (1st)
Top 30 Prospects: LHP Stephen Gonsalves (13), RHP Felix Jorge (17), SS Nick Gordon, RHP Michael Cederoth
GCL Red Sox
28-20 (1st in GCL South)
Offense: 246 R (1st) .662 OPS (9th)
Pitching: 2.77 ERA (1st) 1.18 WHIP (1st)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Rafael Devers (20), SS Javier Guerra (27), RHP Michael Kopech, RHP Jake Cosart