Already well beyond their international bonus limit even with the trade that sent Matt Ramsey to the Marlins, the Rays spent some more, adding Venezuelan lefty Francisco Sanchez to the organization for $675,000. Sanchez has good fastball velocity and complements it with a curveball and changeup, but he has to throw more strikes.
Ben Badler breaks down the ramifications for the Rays' spending spree this year. They won't be able to sign any player over $300,000 in the next two signing periods. Since they're already scouting players that will be available the next two years, it's a calculated risk that they're not going to be missing out on any big talent the next two years. Now that they're hovering around .500 and should stay there, they won't be forfeiting an enormous amount of pool money either.
Triple-A Durham Bulls (67-62)
Durham was off.
Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (24-33)
Montgomery's offense was unproductive, and Addison Russell helped add insurance late in their 7-1 loss to Tennessee. Alejandro Segovia's fourth inning solo home run provided the only offense of the game for the Biscuits. Richie Shaffer reached base three times and Taylor Motter had two hits, but Montgomery was hitless with runners in scoring position and left 16 runners on base.
Dylan Floro took the loss, but he pitched well and watched the bullpen put the game out of reach. The second inning run he allowed was unearned because of a Shaffer error, and the eventual game winner came in the sixth thanks to two doubles, one by Russell. Floro allowed two runs (one earned) on seven hits in seven innings with three strikeouts and no walks. Andrew Bellatti was charged with four runs, including a two run homer by Russell, while only recording an out.
Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (28-26)
Charlotte scored six first inning runs, and that was enough in their 6-3 win over St. Lucie. After falling behind 1-0 through half an inning, the Stone Crabs answered immediately. Tommy Coyle led off with a double, and Johnny Field singled him home to tie the game two batters in. Maxx Tissenbaum homered to make it a 3-1 Charlotte lead, and they would go on to add three more runs with three more hits. Tissenbaum and Juniel Querecuto had two hit games.
After allowing a solo home run in the first inning, Jared Mortensen settled in for a while. He retired 15 of the next 17 batters he faced until Maikis De La Cruz in the sixth. After hitting that first inning home run, De La Cruz doubled to start a two run rally. Mortensen finished with three runs charged on five hits and a walk in 5.2 innings with three strikeouts. The final run scored on a wild pitch by Marcus Jensen.
Class A Bowling Green Hot Rods (26-30)
Bowling Green was outhit 14-11, but they still prevailed with a 4-3 win in 11 innings over Lake County. With the bases loaded and one out in the 11th, Oscar Hernandez struck out, but a wild pitch during James Harris' at-bat won the game for the Hot Rods. Kean Wong was their offensive start by reaching base five times, driving in two runs and stealing a base. Hernandez was one of three Hot Rods to have a two hit game.
For the first time in a while, Chris Kirsch struggled. He only allowed two runs, but he did so on eight hits and two walks in 4.1 innings with seven strikeouts. Andrew Hanse's 3.1 scoreless innings of relief bailed him out, and after Willie Gabay allowed the tying run in the ninth, he finished with three strikeouts in 3.1 innings and was credited with the win.
Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (41-22)
Hudson Valley is at the All-Star break.
Rookie Princeton Rays (31-25)
Nick Ciuffo stayed hot in Princeton's 6-4 win over Elizabethton. His solo home run, his fourth of the year, tied the game at one in the second inning, and his single contributed to a two run fourth that gave the Rays their first lead. The game was tied at three entering the seventh inning, and Princeton was able to break that tie with three two out hits that scored three runs. Carter Burgess had four hits, and Ciuffo and Unroe led a group of four players with two.
On the mound though, Cameron Varga's start was reminiscent of his Princeton debut last month. He only allowed two runs, but it could've been a lot worse. He only made it through four innings, allowing six hits and four walks with three strikeouts. Steve Ascher and Ruben Paredes combined to strike out five over the final five innings to wrap up the game.
Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (28-23)
Two first inning runs held up in the GCL Rays' 2-1 loss to the GCL Red Sox. Both runs were unearned because of a two out error by Matt Ford, and an error by Bill Pujols in the following at-bat didn't help. First rounder Michael Chavis made them pay with a two run single. Angel Yepez was charged with both runs and finished with them allowed on five hits and a walk in five innings with a strikeout.
It took until the seventh for the Rays to get on the board, but they had opportunities early in the game. They left the bases loaded in the second inning, but after that, only one batter reached base until they scored in the seventh. Oscar Sanay's bases loaded single pulled them within one with one out, but the bases would be left loaded again. Chris Knott had two of the Rays' five hits.
Star of the day- Wong continues to be steady at the top of Bowling Green's lineup.
Goat of the day- In their last four games against the GCL Red Sox, the GCL Rays can't afford offense like that.
Today's games (probables courtesy of milb.com)
Durham v. Norfolk 7:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Enny Romero (5-11, 5.00) v. Josh Stinson (5-4, 5.59)
Montgomery v. Tennessee 8:05 PM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Albert Suarez* (3-4, 3.66) v. C.J. Edwards (1-1, 2.65)
Charlotte v. St. Lucie 6:30 PM (Radio stream)
Reinaldo Lopez* (7-4, 3.18) v.TBA
Bowling Green v. Lake County 8:05 PM (Radio stream)
German Marquez (4-5, 3.33) v. Anderson Polanco (2-0, 2.66)
New York-Penn League All-Star Game in Brooklyn 7:30 PM (MiLB.TV)
Princeton @ Elizabethton 7 PM (Radio stream)
Roel Ramirez (6-1, 1.45) v. Michael Cederoth (4-2, 3.10)
GCL Rays v. GCL Red Sox 12 PM
TBA v. TBA
*Listed as TBA on milb.com
Scouting the opposition
Norfolk Tides (Baltimore)
59-70 (2nd in IL South)
Offense: 586 R (4th) .716 OPS (8th)
Pitching: 4.55 ERA (12th) 1.42 WHIP (9th)
Top 30 Prospects: DH Henry Urrutia (7), RHP Mike Wright (8), OF Dariel Alvarez (15), 1B Christian Walker (18), LHP Chris Jones (27), RHP Josh Stinson (28)
Tennessee Smokies (Cubs)
31-26 (1st in SL North)
Offense: 561 R (4th) .716 OPS (5th)
Pitching: 3.67 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
28-28 (5th in FSL South)
Offense: 590 R (2nd) .729 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 4.21 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)
28-27 (3rd in MWL East)
Offense: 535 R (10th) .703 OPS (6th)
Pitching: 4.30 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
32-25 (1st in APP West)
Offense: 276 R (3rd) .706 OPS (2nd)
Pitching: 2.91 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
29-20 (1st in GCL South)
Offense: 248 R (1st) .659 OPS (10th)
Pitching: 2.73 ERA (1st) 1.17 WHIP (1st)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Rafael Devers (20), SS Javier Guerra (27), RHP Michael Kopech, RHP Jake Cosart