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Rays prospects and minor leagues: Venters begins rehab assignment

The Rays’ veteran lefty pitched for Charlotte Thursday.

MLB: New York Yankees at Tampa Bay Rays Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Jesus Sanchez has rebounded after a June with a .635 OPS, the lowest monthly OPS of his career. He’s batting .283 with four doubles and a triple, although he hasn’t homered yet in July. His eight walks are more than he drew in the first three months of the season.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (55-41)

Durham rallied for a 4-3 win over Buffalo. Brandon Lowe led off the seventh with a home run to cut the Bisons’ lead to 3-1, and Andrew Velazquez tripled and scored an inning later. In the ninth, Brandon Snyder’s two-run homer gave the Bulls their first lead of the game. After Yonny Chirinos allowed three runs — two earned — in five innings, Austin Pruitt struck out five in four hitless innings of relief.

RF Justin Williams: 0-for-4, 1 K
SS Willy Adames: 1-for-4, 1 R
2B Brandon Lowe: 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 2 K
3B Christian Arroyo: 2-for-3, 1 BB
C Nick Ciuffo: 0-for-3, 1 RBI, 1 K
1B Brandon Snyder: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 2 K

RHP Yonny Chirinos: 5 IP, 6 H, 3 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 5 K
RHP Austin Pruitt: 4 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K

Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (15-12)

A pitcher’s duel didn’t go Montgomery’s way in a 2-0 loss to Mississippi. J.D. Martin was sharp in eight scoreless innings, striking five and yielding just three hits and a walk. However, Mississippi’s staff was able to match him. In the ninth, a two-out, two-run home run off Travis Ott was the difference.

DH Nick Solak: 2-for-4, 1 2B
1B Nate Lowe: 0-for-3, 1 BB, 2 K
SS Jake Cronenworth: 1-for-3, 1 3B, 1 K

RHP J.D. Martin: 8 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K

Class A-Advanced Charlotte Stone Crabs (15-13)

Blake Bivens had a rare rough outing in Charlotte’s 10-4 loss to Jupiter. The Stone Crabs already trailed 2-1 when the game started to slip away in the fourth. After a bases-clearing triple and sacrifice fly, Bivens was out of the game, having allowed six runs in 3 23 innings. The Hammerheads had another bases-clearing triple in another four-run inning in the seventh.

SS Lucius Fox: 1-for-4, 1 K
RF Jesus Sanchez: 1-for-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K
3B Jermaine Palacios: 1-for-3, 1 BB
1B Brendan McKay: 0-for-4, 1 K
DH Robbie Tenerowicz: 2-for-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 K
2B Tristan Gray: 2-for-3, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB

LHP Jonny Venters: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K
RHP Blake Bivens: 3 23 IP, 5 H, 6 ER, 4 BB, 2 K

Charlotte’s site offers this recap.

Class-A Bowling Green Hot Rods (17-9)

Bowling Green earned a rain-shortened 8-0 win over Beloit. The Hot Rods got off to a fast start. After Taylor Walls singled in the first, he scored on a Moises Gomez triple, and they added two more runs in the inning. Walls singled again to start a four-run fifth inning. With the early run support, Tommy Romero rolled to a seven-inning shutout with eight strikeouts.

2B Vidal Brujan: 0-for-5, 1 K
SS Taylor Walls: 2-for-3, 2 R, 2 BB, 1 K
C Ronaldo Hernandez: 0-for-5, 2 R, 1 K
LF Moises Gomez: 2-for-4, 1 R, 1 2B, 1 3B, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K
CF Carl Chester: 3-for-4, 2 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K, 1 CS

RHP Tommy Romero: 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 8 K

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (20-12)

Chris Betts homered again in Hudson Valley’s 10-2 win over Connecticut. In the third, his solo home run — his league-leading seventh dinger of the season — put the Renegades up 4-1. An inning later, his sacrifice fly plated one of four runs as they blew the game open. For the second straight start, Michael Mercado was good, allowing just an unearned run in four innings while striking out seven.

SS Ford Proctor: 3-for-5, 2 R, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 1 K
CF Tanner Dodson: 1-for-5, 1 R, 2 K
2B Tyler Frank: 1-for-2, 1 R, 2 BB
C Chris Betts: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI
DH Erik Ostberg: 3-for-4, 1 R, 1 RBI, 1 BB
3B Adrian Rondon: 1-for-4, 2 R, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 BB
RF Bryce Brown: 3-for-4, 1 RBI, 1 K

RHP Michael Mercado: 4 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), 2 BB, 7 K

Rookie Princeton Rays (19-10)

Princeton needed just five hits in its 6-4 win over Kingsport. After a walk and hit batter to start the game, a passed ball moved two runners into scoring position, and they both scored on consecutive run-scoring outs. Princeton tacked on additional runs in four separate innings. Starter Cristopher Sanchez struck out five and allowed just an unearned run in six innings.

SS Wander Franco: 1-for-2, 3 RBI
3B Connor Hollis: 1-for-1, 2 R, 2 BB, 1 SB, 1 CS, 1 HBP

LHP Cristopher Sanchez: 6 IP, 5 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 5 K
RHP Heath Renz: two-thirds IP, 3 H, 3 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 0 K
LHP Steffon Moore: 2 13 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K

Rookie Gulf Coast League Rays (13-13)

The GCL Rays scored four in the ninth for a 5-3 win over the GCL Red Sox. Down to the last out, they kept the game alive with a Russ Olive single, and Kaleo Johnson’s two-run homer tied the game — but the rally didn’t stop there. After Raider Brito singled and Nick Schnell walked, Dawson Dimon drove in both with a double. Matthew Liberatore pitched his longest pro outing yet, allowing two runs — one earned — in three innings.

CF Nick Schnell: 1-for-2, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 BB, 1 K
SS Jelfry Marte: 1-for-4
3B Kaleo Johnson: 1-for-4, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 K

LHP Matthew Liberatore: 3 IP, 3 H, 2 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 3 K


Friday’s games (probables courtesy of

Durham @ Buffalo 7:05 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Zach Lee (2-2, 3.66) vs. Chris Rowley (5-6, 3.45)

Montgomery vs. Mississippi 7:35 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
TBA vs. Kyle Wright (5-7, 4.10)

Charlotte vs. Jupiter 6:35 p.m. ET (radio stream)
Kenny Rosenberg (7-1, 4.24) vs. TBA

Bowling Green @ Beloit 8 p.m. ET (radio stream)
Resly Linares (3-2, 4.04) vs. Mitchell Jordan (3-2, 2.45)

Hudson Valley vs. Vermont 7:05 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
TBA vs. Adam Reuss (1-1, 5.19)

Princeton vs. Kingsport 7 p.m. ET (radio stream)
TBA vs. Willy Taveras (3-1, 1.33)

GCL Rays vs. GCL Orioles 12 p.m.

*Listed as TBA on

Scouting the opposition

Buffalo Bisons (Toronto)
43-47 (3rd in IL North)
Offense: 387 R (9th) .696 OPS (9th)
Pitching: 3.76 ERA (7th) 1.30 WHIP (6th)
Top-30 prospects: OF Anthony Alford (3), C Danny Jansen (7), SS Richard Urena (9), LHP Ryan Borucki (10), RHP Sean Reid-Foley (11), C Reese McGuire (15), 1B Rowdy Tellez (21)

Mississippi Braves
13-13 (3rd in SL South)
Offense: 373 R (9th) .667 OPS (9th)
Pitching: 3.65 ERA (2nd) 1.40 WHIP (10th)
Top-30 prospects: RHP Kyle Wright (4), RHP Bryse Wilson (12), LHP Ricardo Sanchez (19), LHP Phil Pfiefer (29), SS Ray-Patrick Didder (31), RHP Enderson Franco

Jupiter Hammerheads (Miami)
11-16 (4th in FSL South)
Offense: 359 R (10th) .646 OPS (11th)
Pitching: 3.37 ERA (1st) 1.23 WHIP (1st)
Top-30 prospects: RHP Jorge Guzman (2), 2B Riley Mahan (18), OF Corey Bird (31), RHP Ethan Clark

Beloit Snappers (Oakland)
17-7 (1st in MWL West)
Offense: 377 R (14th) .688 OPS (12th)
Pitching: 3.79 ERA (7th) 1.32 WHIP (5th)
Top-30 prospects: OF Austin Beck (6), OF Lazaro Armenteros (9), SS Nick Allen (15), RHP Dakota Chalmers (29)

Vermont Lake Monsters (Oakland)
17-16 (3rd in NYPL Stedler)
Offense: 144 R (5th) .630 OPS (11th)
Pitching: 3.96 ERA (12th) 1.28 WHIP (7th)
Top-30 prospects: 2B Marcos Brito (28), OF Jameson Hannah, SS Jeremy Eierman

Kingsport Mets
15-12 (2nd in AL West)
Offense: 182 R (1st) .836 OPS (2nd)
Pitching: 4.58 ERA (4th) 1.51 WHIP (5th)
Top-30 prospects: IF Mark Vientos (6), OF Jarred Kelenic

GCL Orioles
8-17 (4th in GCL South)
Offense: 85 R (18th) .571 OPS (18th)
Pitching: 4.51 ERA (12th) 1.55 WHIP (18th)
Top-30 prospects: OF Lamar Sparks (25), RHP Grayson Rodriguez

Daily news and links

Eric Longenhagen wrote an important piece on black players in the Futures Game. There was also an interesting note on Jesus Sanchez at the end.

Trouble is brewing in the Midwest League.