Triple-A: Norfolk Tides 4, Gwinnett Stripers 2
With infielder Domingo Leyba a healthy scratch (a possible call-up to join the big league team in Buffalo?), catcher Nick Ciuffo almost singlehandedly powered the Tides to a win on Saturday with a two-run single in the fourth and a home run in the eighth. Tyler Nevin contributed a sac fly.
Conner Greene, an offseason signing this winter, pitched four innings of two-run, three-hit baseball, striking out five (1-2, 6.67 ERA). Tyler Joyner, a 2018 30th-round pick, pitched 2.2 scoreless innings in his Norfolk debut. Claudio Custodio pitched 1.1 scoreless, and Eric Hanhold got the save with a scoreless ninth.
Jahmai Jones, apparently not getting called up yet, went 1-for-4. Zach Jarrett was 1-for-3 with a walk.
Double-A: Bowie Baysox 10, New Hampshire Fisher Cats 0
The craziest thing about this game may be that Adley Rutschman had a grand slam stolen from him and the team still put up ten runs. Or that Grayson Rodriguez (3-0, 1.82 ERA) now has 36 K’s in 24.2 innings.
Either way, it was about as good a game as you can draw up: the best pitching prospect in baseball allowed a single hit and no runs in five innings, and every Baysox batter reached base once or more. Alexis Torres hit a three-run homer in the first, and the Baysox never looked back. Toby Welk had a hit and scored two runs. Robert Neustrom went 2-for-5 and Johnny Rizer drove in 3 runs himself.
None of this mattered for the team’s record today, because Grayson Rodriguez mowed down Fisher Cats for five innings, allowed one hit and one walk and nothing else while throwing a grand total of 61 pitches. Last week Rodriguez punched out eight, this week he punched out eight. Yeah, it’s good. Lefty Cameron Bishop pitched four hitless, scoreless innings to bring this one home.
High-A: Aberdeen IronBirds 5, Rome Braves 0
The IronBirds ran away with this on the strength of a grand slam by Jordan Westburg, strong pitching, and some great defense. With two outs in the third, the IronBirds loaded the bases on an error, single, and a walk before Westburg drove them all home with one swing. Adam Hall added an RBI single in the fifth. Shayne Fontana went 3-for-4 today, and Zach Watson also recorded a hit.
Meanwhile, the duo of Connor Gillespie and Ryan Conroy combined to allow only four hits and no runs. Gillespie threw five innings and struck out five, and Conroy allowed just one hit and two walks in four scoreless.
Low-A: Delmarva Shorebirds 14, Fredericksburg Nationals 2
The 29-16 Shorebirds did everything but try to make this game suspenseful, with nine runs scored before the third inning. Two new Shorebirds, Yorkislandy Alvarez and Lamar Sparks, started the fun off with RBI singles in the first two innings. Mason Janvrin singled and hit a two-run home run on a 2-for-6 day. Hudson Haskin went 2-for-5 with a three-run home run. Catcher Ryne Ogren, a one-time shortstop whom the Birds traded for from Seattle for Mike Wright, went 3-for-4 with two driven in and two scored.
Four Delmarva pitchers combined to allow just six hits and two runs. Noah Denoyer (4-2, 3.90 ERA) threw five innings with eight strikeouts and was responsible for the runs. Adam Stauffer, Kyle Martin, and Thomas Girard were unblemished: Stauffer struck out four batters in two innings and Girard racked up a pair of K’s himself.
Complete box scores from Saturday’s games can be found here.
Sunday’s scheduled games:
Norfolk vs. Gwinnett, 1:05 PM. Starter: Kevin Smith (0-1, 6.23 ERA)
Bowie vs. New Hampshire, 1:35 PM. Starter: Ofelky Peralta (3-0, 3.91 ERA)
Aberdeen at Asheville, 2:05 PM. Starter: TBD
Delmarva vs. Fredericksburg, 2:05 PM. Starter: Houston Roth (1-1, 4.13 ERA)