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Rays prospects and minor leagues: McCarthy homers as Bulls take series lead

With Joe McCarthy’s home run and Chih-Wei Hu’s solid pitching performance, Durham is a game away from returning to the International League Championship.

MLB: Spring Training-Boston Red Sox at Tampa Bay Rays Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Something that can fly under the radar at the end of the minor league season is very late promotions. Jake Cronenworth returned to Durham, and Tristan Gray is making a cameo with Montgomery, although his role has been very limited so far.

Triple-A Durham Bulls (2-1)

Joe McCarthy’s home run lifted Durham to a 4-2 win over Toledo and a 2-1 series lead. After the Mud Hens scored twice in the top of the third to go up 2-1, it did not take long for The Red Scare to return the lead to the Bulls. Kean Wong was hit by a pitch to lead off the bottom half of the inning, and McCarthy followed with a two-run homer. Durham added an unearned insurance run an inning later. Chih-Wei Hu allowed two runs in five innings, and Jordan Harrison, Colin Poche, and Hoby Milner combined to throw four scoreless innings of relief.

LF Joe McCarthy: 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 HR, 2 RBI, 1 BB
CF Austin Meadows: 1-for-3, 1 BB
1B Nate Lowe: 1-for-4, 1 RBI, 1 K
SS Jake Cronenworth: 0-for-3, 1 R, 1 K

RHP Chih-Wei Hu: 5 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 0 BB, 5 K
LHP Colin Poche: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K

Double-A Montgomery Biscuits (1-2)

Montgomery didn’t get enough offense in its 3-0 loss to Jackson and fell in a 2-1 series hole. With seven strikeouts and two runs allowed in 6 23 innings, Sam McWilliams pitched well against his old organization, but he didn’t get any run support. The Biscuits had just five hits, drew only one walk, and went 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position.

2B Nick Solak: 1-for-4, 1 K
RF Jesus Sanchez: 1-for-4, 2 K
SS Lucius Fox: 0-for-3, 2 K

RHP Sam McWilliams: 6 23 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 7 K

Class-A Bowling Green Hot Rods (2-0)

Bowling Green was off.

Short-Season Hudson Valley Renegades (2-0)

Hudson Valley was off.


Friday’s games (probables courtesy of

Durham vs. Toledo 6:35 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
TBA vs. Matt Hall (1-1, 2.03)

Best-of-five semifinal (Durham leads, 2-1)

Montgomery vs. Jackson 7:05 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
Benton Moss (8-5, 2.75) vs. TBA

Best-of-five semifinal (Montgomery trails, 2-1)

Bowling Green @ West Michigan 6 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)

Best-of-three semifinal (Series tied, 0-0)

Hudson Valley @ Tri-City 7 p.m. ET (MiLB.TV, radio stream)
TBA vs. Shawn Dubin (2-1, 4.60)

Best-of-three championship (Series tied, 0-0)

*Listed as TBA on

Scouting the opposition

Toledo Mud Hens (Detroit)
Offense: 577 R (8th) .707 OPS (7th)
Pitching: 4.05 ERA (10th) 1.32 WHIP (8th)
Top-30 prospects: OF Daz Cameron (6), OF Christin Stewart (9), RHP Kyle Funkhouser (11), RHP Spencer Turnbull (12), OF Mike Gerber (14), RHP Bryan Garcia (16), LHP Ryan Carpenter

Jackson Generals (Arizona)
Offense: 627 R (3rd) .719 OPS (4th)
Pitching: 3.76 ERA (4th) 1.25 WHIP (1st)
Top-30 prospects: RHP Jon Duplantier (1), IF Domingo Leyba (11), LHP Jared Miller (17)

West Michigan Whitecaps (Detroit)
Offense: 525 R (16th) .653 OPS (16th)
Pitching: 3.46 ERA (5th) 1.32 WHIP (7th)
Top-30 prospects: RHP Wilkel Hernandez (20), SS Wenceel Perez (24), C Joey Morgan (31)

Tri-City ValleyCats (Houston)
Offense: 328 R (6th) .703 OPS (2nd)
Pitching: 3.30 ERA (3rd) 1.27 WHIP (5th)
Top-30 prospects: OF Granden Goetzman (yes, that Granden Goetzman)

Daily news and links

J.J. Cooper at Baseball America and Craig Goldstein at Baseball Prospectus each wrote about prospects and service time.