This one’s a bit late, but here’s a recap of what went down in the 13 games Jays affiliates played on Monday and Tuesday, where they went 6-7 overall.
Highlights include Darin Mastroianni returning to form in Las Vegas, Henderson Alvarez impressing everybody once again in New Hampshire, Dustin McGowan‘s longest start of the season in Dunedin, a solid rebound outing from Aaron Sanchez in Bluefield, and starts by Adonys Cardona and 2011 46th overall draft pick Joe Musgrove in the Gulf Coast League.
Wins/Losses: 52-52 | Streak: L1 | 2nd in PCL Pacific South (10.0 GB)
July 25: Las Vegas 51s 9, Tucson Padres 8 (WP: Richmond)
In a back and forth game that saw the 51s rally to tie the game three times, they managed to get their first four-straight hitters on base in the ninth inning to break an 8-8 tie and walk-off with the 9-8 win on Monday.
The 51s offense managed to pump out nine runs on 19 hits, and leading the way was Manny Mayorson who finished with three singles, a walk, and a game-high four RBIs. Ryan Shealy went 3-for-4 with a walk and a pair of RBIs, Adam Loewen smacked two doubles — which brings him to 37 on the season — and Brett Lawrie went 1-for-3.
Danny Perales, who has been playing solid defense for the 51s this season while contributing with the stick, went 4-for-5 with two doubles and an RBI.
Jesse Litsch, one of the possibilities to replace recently departed Jo-Jo Reyes in the Jays rotation, didn’t have his best stuff at all, allowing five earned runs on eight hits in just five innings of work. In addition to walking two and fanning four, Litsch hit a batter, balked once, and threw two wild pitches. He also allowed two home runs in the fifth inning, including one to top Padres prospect Anthony Rizzo.
Scott Richmond got the win after pitching four innings in relief, where he gave up three runs (two earned) on five hits with a walk and three strikeouts.
July 26: Reno Aces 10, Las Vegas 51s 5 (LP: Ray)
Despite tying the game at four in the top of the second inning, the 51s gave up five unanswered runs to fall behind 9-4 and eventually drop the series opener to Reno 10-5 on Tuesday.
Manny Mayorson went 2-for-5 with a double and a team-high two RBIs, Jayson Nix hit an RBI double, and Ricardo Nanita went 2-for-4 with a double, hitting eighth. Lawrie went 1-for-5, but that doesn’t really matter since it’s only a matter of time before he debuts in Toronto.
Leadoff hitter Darin Mastroianni went 1-for-4 with a double, a walk, and an RBI. After starting the year with Vegas and being demoted to Double-A after mustering a .642 OPS in April (and being replaced by Podsednik, Wise, etc.), Mastroianni returned to Vegas and hasn’t looked back since. In 21 July games, the 25-year-old has hit .304 and managed a 1.079 OPS over his last ten.
After a promising first start with Vegas back on July 16, 51s starter Robert Ray was roughed up badly in this contest. He allowed a whopping nine earned runs on just six hits, thanks to a pair of home runs that accounted for seven of his runs. He also walked three while striking out six and hit a batter.
Rommie Lewis held down the fort for the final three innings, allowing one earned run on four hits with one strikeout.
Wins/Losses: 56-46 | Streak: W1 | 1st in EAS Eastern (0.0 GB)
July 25: New Britain Rock Cats 6, New Hampshire Fisher Cats 5 (LP: Korecky)
After rallying to tie the game in the eighth inning and hit a go-ahead, two-run home run in the top of the 13th, New Britain stormed back with three runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning to stun the Fisher Cats and walk-off with the win in the opener of a four-game series on Monday.
Travis d’Arnaud, Yan Gomes, Jonathan Diaz, and Anthony Gose all had two hits, and it was Gose who supplied the short-lived heroics with the two-run homer in the 13th frame. Apart from Gose’s home run, d’Arnaud’s double was the only other extra-base hit the Fisher Cats managed, though they walked eight times as a group.
Henderson Alvarez was impressive once again despite giving up ten hits, as he finished his outing with only three runs against him in 6.2 innings, and only two runs were earned. He walked one, struck out seven, and hit one batter, and is now sporting a nice 2.84 ERA in 12 starts with New Hampshire. If he’s this dominant on primarily a two-pitch repertoire, think of how much of a stud he could become when he masters his third pitch. Oh, and he’s only 21!
July 26: New Hampshire Fisher Cats 5, New Britain Rock Cats 4 (WP: LaMura | S: Crawford)
After cruising with a 5-1 lead until the sixth inning, the Fisher Cats were able to hold off a rally in that inning to top New Britain on Tuesday and split the series heading into tonight’s doubleheader.
Anthony Gose, who set a new Fisher Cats franchise record for stolen bases over the weekend, went 1-for-2 with two walks, but was caught stealing for the 14th time this season.
Fisher Cats starter B.J. LaMura gave up only four hits in five innings en route to allowing just a pair of earned runs, largely in part to a solo home run he surrendered in the first inning. He walked three, struck out four, and got seven ground-ball outs versus zero fly-ball outs.
Wins/Losses: 15-17 | Streak: L1 | 5th in FSL North (3.0 GB)
July 25: Dunedin Blue Jays 9, Jupiter Hammerheads 1 (WP: Tepera)
In a game where all eyes were on Dunedin starter Dustin McGowan, the D-Jays’ offense was evenly distributed and they were able to shut down the Hammerheads offensively to record the 9-1 win on Monday.
Outside of Jon Talley and Chris Hopkins, every D-Jays player managed at least one hit, including pinch-hitter Brad McElroy. Kevin Ahrens hit a solo home run in the fourth inning and drew two walks, Ivan Contreras had the only other extra-base hit of the game with a double, and both he and A.J. Jimenez had two RBIs.
McGowan pitched three innings, his longest outing of the season, and allowed just one earned run on three hits. He didn’t walk a batter and struck out a pair, while registering two groundouts and three flyouts.
Ryan Tepera was exquisite in “relief” though, tossing six shutout innings and scattering three hits while striking out four and walking none. The strong performance earned him his eighth win of the season, and it was the first time he has lasted six innings since June 28.
July 26: Jupiter Hammerheads 3, Dunedin Blue Jays 2 (LP: Wright)
After erasing two early Jupiter runs by the fifth inning, the D-Jays allowed the go-ahead run in the sixth to ultimately lose a close battle with the Hammerheads 3-2 on Tuesday.
Leadoff hitter Brad McElroy set the tone with a 2-for-4 night including a double, an intentional walk, and two stolen bases, Brian Van Kirk went 2-for-4, and the only two RBIs of the game went to Brad Glenn and Kevin Ahrens.
Now-standout pitching prospect Nestor Molina was solid once again, allowing two earned runs on eight hits with a walk and four strikeouts in five innings of work. His only mistake was the two-run home run he allowed in the first inning, and it was the first time he’s allowed any runs in a start since July 4. Interestingly enough, though, he hasn’t lasted more than five innings since June 24.
Matt Wright was handed the hard-luck loss after allowing one earned run in three strong innings of work.
Wins/Losses: 20-10 | Streak: W3 | 2nd in MID Eastern (2.0 GB)
July 25: Lansing Lugnuts 7, Beloit Snappers 6 (WP: Berl | S: Strickland)
After tying the game in the third and taking the lead in the sixth, the Lugnuts were able to hold off a four-run Beloit ninth inning to win 7-6 on Monday night and complete the three game sweep.
Leadoff hitter Michael Crouse led the way with two doubles and two walks, center fielder Jake Marisnick went 2-for-2 with a pair of RBIs and a walk, Oliver Dominguez chipped in a double, and Marcus Knecht went 1-for-3 with an RBI.
The Lugnuts scored the go-ahead run in the sixth inning when Marisnick singled, injuring the Beloit pitcher’s ankle and removing him from the game, and his replacement walked the next two batters to load the bases. A wild pitch allowed Marisnick to score and give the Lugs the lead, which they never surrendered for the rest of the game.
Lugnuts starter Sean Nolin allowed two earned runs on five hits in 5.2 innings of work, walking two and striking out six. He faced a whopping 23 batters in those 5.2 innings.
Brandon Berl improved to 3-0 on the season after earning the win for his 2.1 innings of shutout ball, Dustin Antolin allowed all four Beloit runs in the ninth inning before Sam Strickland came in to shut the door and preserve the win for the Lugnuts, earning his second save of the season in the process.
July 26: OFF DAY
Wins/Losses: 24-14 | Streak: L1 | T-1st in NOR West (0.0 GB)
July 25: Salem-Keizer Volcanoes 10, Vancouver Canadians 6 (LP: Longpre)
After leading for the game’s first five innings, the C’s gave up nine unanswered runs and committed five errors to lose the second game of the three game series with the Volcanoes Monday night.
Balbino Fuenmayor finished with a double and two RBIs, Jonathan Jones went 1-for-3 with an RBI and two walks, Chris Schaeffer went 1-for-2 with two RBIs and a pair of walks, and Shane Opitz went 2-for-4.
Five different Canadians players each committed an error, including three in the span of four batters in the top of the seventh inning.
Canadians starter Jesse Hernandez didn’t pitch terribly, allowing four earned runs on seven hits in 5.1 innings. He walked one, struck out three, and recorded ten ground ball outs.
Things got messy when Bryan Longpre, perhaps the C’s most reliable reliever since he had just allowed one earned run all season prior to Monday night, entered the game with the bases loaded for Hernandez. Not only did he allow all three inherited runners to score, but he allowed another run to score after that that was charged to him.
Things got even messier in the seventh, when Longpre walked in another run after the bases were loaded on three errors. Then, Travis Garrett relieved Longpre, and gave up a grand slam before ending the inning!
July 26: Salem Keizer Volcanoes 7, Vancouver Canadians 5 (LP: Escalante)
Despite their best efforts with a rally in the later innings, the C’s trailed for the majority of the game and ultimately fell to the Volcanoes after giving up the go-ahead runs in the top of the ninth inning on Tuesday.
Matt Newman led the way for the C’s, going 3-for-4 with a walk and his first home run of the season, Jonathon Berti went 2-for-5 with two RBIs at the top of the lineup, and JoNathan Jones managed an RBI in a pinch-hitting appearance.
Canadians starter Taylor Cole allowed three earned runs on four hits in three innings of work before giving way to Justin Nicolino to show him how it’s done. Nicolino allowed just an unearned run on three hits in three innings as well, walking none and striking out four.
Alesone Escalante, who hadn’t allowed an earned run all month, was charged with the loss after allowing two runs (one earned) on a pair of hits in the ninth inning.
Wins/Losses: 19-16 | Streak: L1 | 2nd in APP East (1.0 GB)
After getting rained out on Monday, Bluefield made up that game with a doubleheader on Tuesday, splitting both games and going 1-1.
Game 1: Bluefield Blue Jays 11, Princeton Rays 4 (WP: Sanchez)
The B-Jays didn’t even need the strong starting pitching that they received, as they went on to clobber the Rays 11-4 in the first game of a doubleheader.
I’ll be doing an upcoming feature on Bluefield left fielder Chris Hawkins, because he’s been unbelievable so far this season. In game one, he finished a single shy of the cycle with a 3-for-4 night which included a game-high five RBIs. Hawkins had a decent June but has been raking in July, with a .324/.359/.649 clip over his last ten games.
Kevin Pillar went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs and hit his fourth home run of the season, first baseman Art Charles added two RBIs of his own as well as a pair of walks, and Matt Johnson, who started the year in Vancouver, went 2-for-4.
Standout prospect Aaron Sanchez bounced back from his rough outing on July 20 where he allowed five earned runs in just 1.2 innings by allowing just one earned run over five innings on Tuesday, walking one and striking out four.
Game 2: Princeton Rays 8, Bluefield Blue Jays 3 (LP: Jaye)
Despite only managing three hits, the B-Jays were able to score three runs in a wild fifth inning, but they weren’t enough as they fell to the Rays 8-3 in the doubleheader finale on Tuesday.
Leadoff hitter Cody Bartlett had the only notable hit for Bluefield with a three-run home run, and he drew a walk as well. Chris Hawkins stole a base, but was also caught stealing home after being picked off at third base.
Jaye was handed the loss in his shortest outing of the season, just 2.2 innings. He allowed five runs (two earned) on six hits, walking one and striking out four. His main mistake was the two-run home run that he gave up in the third inning.
Wins/Losses: 12-20 | Streak: W1 | 6th in GCL North (9.0 GB)
July 25: GCL Pirates 12, GCL Blue Jays 4
The GCL Jays could never actually lead in this game, and got blown out by the Pirates 12-4 on Monday.
Seth Conner went 1-for-2 with three walks, Santiago Nessy went 1-for -5 with a pair of strikeouts, and leadoff hitter Dalton Pompey went 1-for-5 as well. Jorge Vega-Rosado went 1-for-2 with a double and a pair of stolen bases, bringing his season total to 15.
Joe Musgrove, the 46th overall selection in this year’s draft, was roughed up in his third outing of the season, giving up five earned runs on four hits in three innings. He walked one, struck out one, and allowed a three-run, two-out homer in the third inning.
Adaric Kelly allowed three earned runs on two hits and two walks in 2.1 innings of relief.
July 26: GCL Blue Jays 9, GCL Pirates 7 (WP: Roman | S: Broussard)
The GCL Jays scored three runs in the first inning and led the rest of the game, en route to topping the Pirates 9-7 on Tuesday.
Seth Conner hit his third home run of the season and finished 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, and three RBIs, Jorge Vega-Rosado went 3-for-5 with a double and two RBIs, and Dalton Pompey went 1-for-2 with three walks in the leadoff spot.
International free-agent signing Adonys Cardona allowed two earned runs on three hits in 3.2 innings of work but struggled with control, striking out four but walking four as well.