Casey Gillaspie's .830 OPS may seem underwhelming, but with the league average at .678, the highest it's been since 2011, it's still clearly a league for pitchers. He went 0/12 in his first two games combined, and he's batting around .300 since then.
Look for him high in my mid-season top 30 prospect update, but please go easy on me because those are tough to put together.
Triple-A Durham Bulls (60-55)
Alex Colome was hit hard in Durham's 7-1 loss to Lehigh Valley. After a quick first two innings, Colome ran into trouble in a three run third that was capped off by a Russ Canzler groundout. The IronPigs would add four more an inning later, taking advantage of a walk, hit batter and wild pitch early in the inning. Colome exited after that inning having allowed seven runs on seven hits and a walk in four innings with two strikeouts.
Durham's only run of the game came in the seventh on a Wilson Betemit solo home run. 10 of his 17 home runs this year have come leading off an inning, and that feels like it's a lot. Vince Belnome had two hits.
Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (22-23)
Victor Mateo faced the minimum through four innings, but one poor frame cost him in Montgomery's 2-1 loss to Jackson. The only hit he allowed in the first four innings was erased on a caught stealing by Jake DePew, but a single and double to start the fifth did him in. With two runners in scoring position, back to back sac flies gave the Generals a 2-1 lead. Mateo finished with the two runs allowed on four hits in seven innings with five strikeouts and no walks.
The Biscuits scored their only run of the game in the second to take a 1-0 lead. Hector Guevara doubled home Jeff Malm with one out, but they couldn't capitalize again with him in scoring position. They were given plenty of opportunities to get on the board again, but they were hitless with runners in scoring position and left 10 on base. Kes Carter batted leadoff and reached base four times.
Class-A Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (21-21)
Charlotte's doubleheader was rained out.
Class A Bowling Green Hot Rods (18-25)
Bowling Green did not get many offensive contributions in their 5-1 loss to South Bend. The Hot Rods had at least one runner reach base in the first eight innings, but their only run of the game came on a sixth inning Ty Young home run. They also didn't have a hit with runners in scoring position and left 10 runners on base. Armando Araiza reached base three times.
After throwing 3.2 scoreless innings in his first start, Isaac Gil struggled. He threw a scoreless first inning, but a two run homer in the second inning gave the Silver Hawks all the runs they needed. They added three more with two outs an inning later, and Gil exited with five runs allowed on seven hits in three innings with four strikeouts and no walks. Ben Griset struck out six in five scoreless relief innings.
Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (36-15)
Once again, Hudson Valley shut down one of the league's best offenses in their 3-2 win over State College. Oscar Armenta allowed both Spikes runs, but he pitched a season high 6.1 innings and limited them to five hits and a walk with four strikeouts. Mike Franco relieved him and was even better, striking out four in 2.2 scoreless innings to pick up a save.
Casey Gillaspie's first inning groundout to score Bralin Jackson got the Renegades on the board first, and Gillaspie came up big again three innings later with a solo home run, his sixth of the year. An inning later in a 2-1 game, Alec Sole singled home what proved to be the winning run. Jackson had two hits, and Coty Blanchard reached base twice and stole two bases.
Rookie Princeton Rays (23-20)
Princeton's early 5-0 lead proved to be just enough in their 5-4 win over Danville. Nick Ciuffo's two run homer, his second of the season and his career, gave the Rays a 2-0 lead, and they built up the lead even further in the third. It was another home run that did the damage too. After Blake Grant-Parks reached on an error and Riley Unroe doubled, Angel Moreno's three run home run extended the lead. It was his first home run in his U.S. career. Unroe and Moreno each had two hits.
Cameron Varga's second Appy League start went quite a bit better than his first. Over a week since he allowed six runs in 2.1 innings, he struck out two in three scoreless innings. Greg Maisto followed that with three scoreless innings of his own, but he stumbled and allowed two runs when Princeton tried to stretch him through a fourth. Rafael Cordova allowed two more runs while only recording two outs, but Steve Ascher and Ruben Paredes were able to get the final five outs.
Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (24-15)
The GCL Rays fell behind 5-0, and they couldn't catch up in their 6-2 loss to the GCL Red Sox. Jose Alvarado started and gave up a run in the third and fourth innings, finishing with two runs allowed on four hits and a walk in four innings with five strikeouts. The Red Sox added three an inning later against 2014 pick Spencer Moran, but he did strike out a career high three.
The Rays got both of their runs in the sixth inning, but they needed help from the Red Sox. With two outs and a pair of runners in scoring position, a passed ball and wild pitch scored a pair of runs and got the Rays back in the game. Oscar Sanay's single that inning was one of two hits he had, and the Rays only had three total.
Star of the day- Armenta was solid for Hudson Valley.
Goat of the day- Colome has to be better.
Today's games (probables courtesy of milb.com)
Durham @ Lehigh Valley 11:35 AM (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Mike Montgomery (9-4, 3.96) v. TBA
Montgomery is off
Charlotte is off
Bowling Green v. South Bend 8:05 PM (Radio stream)
Chris Kirsch (7-6, 2.70) v. Markus Solbach* (2-1, 4.24)
Hudson Valley is off
Princeton @ Danville 7 PM (Radio stream)
Trevor Lubking (1-3, 3.16) v. Daniel Cordero (3-3, 5.72)
GCL Rays @ GCL Red Sox 12 PM
TBA v. TBA
*Listed as TBA on milb.com
Scouting the opposition
Lehigh Valley IronPigs (Philadelphia)
54-63 (6th in IL North)
Offense: 466 R (14th) .687 OPS (14th)
Pitching: 4.52 ERA (11th) 1.42 WHIP (9th)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Maikel Franco (1), RHP Miguel Gonzalez (6), RHP Ethan Martin (10), OF Cameron Perkins (11), C Cameron Rupp (13), RHP Ken Giles (18)
South Bend Silver Hawks (Arizona)
25-18 (2nd in MWL East)
Offense: 574 R (1st) .727 OPS (2nd)
Pitching: 3.65 ERA (7th) 1.29 WHIP (7th)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Jose Martinez (6), OF Stryker Trahan (8), 1B Daniel Palka (17), C Michael Perez (20), RHP Geordy Parra (22), SS Joe Munoz (26), 2B Jamie Westbrook (27), 2B Andrew Velasquez (28)
26-17 (1st in APP East)
Offense: 219 R (3rd) .726 OPS (1st)
Pitching: 3.32 ERA (3rd) 1.18 WHIP (2nd)
Top 30 Prospects: RHP Carlos Salazar (17), C Tanner Murphy (21)
GCL Red Sox
23-16 (2nd in GCL South)
Offense: 194 R (3rd) .655 OPS (11th)
Pitching: 2.59 ERA (2nd) 1.16 WHIP (1st)
Top 30 Prospects: 3B Rafael Devers (20), SS Javier Guerra (27), RHP Michael Kopech, RHP Jake Cosart