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Orioles minor league recap 6/1: Henderson continues to rake, Hall strikes out six

Gunnar Henderson pushed his OPS near 1.000 with a three-hit performance in Bowie’s victory, and Aberdeen won yet again.

Altoona Curve v Bowie Baysox Photo by 2021 Rodger Wood/Diamond Images via Getty Images

Triple-A: Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (Marlins) 8, Norfolk Tides 3

It was DL Hall night at Norfolk, and his performance was similar to what we’ve seen in all five of his starts with the Tides. He was limited to three innings, and was tagged for a pair of runs and three hits, but he continued to rack up the strikeouts, with six in this contest. Hall is still trying to hone his command; with two walks in this game, he has issued at least two free passes in each of his five starts at Triple-A. The 23-year-old lefty, tied as the third-best prospect in Camden Chat’s composite rankings, certainly has some work to do before we see him in Baltimore.

It was a rough night for #13 prospect Mike Baumann, who gave up four runs (three earned) and six hits in two innings of relief, inflating his ERA to 6.59. That’s no way to get another chance in the Orioles bullpen.

The Tides’ offensive highlight was a home run by DJ Stewart, who I kind of forgot was still in the Orioles’ organization. Good on ya, Deej. That was Norfolk’s only extra-base hit. Kyle Stowers (#8, tied) went 1-for-4 with a walk and two strikeouts.

Box score

Double-A: Bowie Baysox 5, Altoona Curve (Pirates) 4

Look, I know as soon as you folks get to the Baysox recap, your eyes immediately scan for any mention of Gunnar Henderson’s name. “What about Gunnar Henderson? How was Gunnar Henderson? Did Gunnar Henderson do something awesome again?” you wonder.

You guys...of course Gunnar Henderson did something awesome again. Because he’s awesome. He went 3-for-5, smacked a pair of doubles, and drove in two. With his latest outburst, Henderson is now thisclose to a 1.000 OPS for the season, sitting at .996 through 43 games. And oh yes, he still has more walks (40) than strikeouts (31). And he’s 20 years old. Get this guy to Norfolk already so that we can start impatiently waiting for his major league debut.

The first five hitters in Bowie’s lineup all are among the Orioles’ top 18 prospects, with Henderson (#3, tied) joined by Jordan Westburg (#6), Joey Ortiz (#14), Cesar Prieto (#16, tied), and Hudson Haskin (#18, tied). How is this team only 17-27? Ortiz was the only one of that quintet not to get a hit on this night — though he did draw a walk — while the other four were a combined 9-for-18 with four runs and four RBIs.

Starter Drew Rom (#15 prospect) struck out six batters in 3.2 innings, giving up one earned run. Jensen Elliott and Noah Denoyer combined for 5.1 innings of one-run relief, including a four-out save by Denoyer, who did this to a guy.

Box score

High-A: Aberdeen IronBirds 4, Hudson Valley Renegades (Yankees) 2

Ho hum, just another win for the IronBirds, who are now a minor league-best 32-12 this season. They’ve won five in a row. The IronBirds managed only four hits but made the most of them by turning them into four runs. Two were doubles by #12 prospect Terrin Vavra, who’s beginning a rehab assignment after suffering a hamstring injury with Norfolk on April 20. Colton Cowser (#3, tied) had a nice game, roping a two-run double and also walking twice. Connor Norby (#11) and Darell Hernaiz (#29, tied) were a combined 0-for-8.

Aberdeen’s bullpen came up huge after erratic starter Connor Gillispie walked six batters in two innings. Alex Pham, Wes Robertson, and Gregori Vasquez combined for seven scoreless innings of relief, striking out eight and walking just one. The Renegades ran wild on the basepaths, with a mind-boggling eight stolen base attempts against Aberdeen catcher Ramon Rodriguez, six of which were successful. None directly led to a run, though, so they wore themselves out for nothing.

Box score

Low-A: Myrtle Beach Pelicans (Cubs) 7, Delmarva Shorebirds 5

Right-hander Shane Davis delivered the bare minimum of a quality start — six innings, three earned runs — and now has a 3.98 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in 10 games this year, though just a 1-5 record. But the Shorebirds never led in this game, and a rally attempt in the ninth inning fell short.

Elio Prado and Noelberth Romero, the two then-teenagers acquired from Boston in the Andrew Cashner trade in 2019, each had two hits and an RBI in this game. Prado also picked up an outfield assist, throwing out a runner at the plate from center field. Less successful was shortstop Isaac De Leon, the return from the 2020 Richard Bleier trade, who committed two throwing errors and now has 17 in 39 games.

Box score

Wednesday’s scheduled games:

  • Norfolk: vs. Jacksonville, 6:35 PM. Starter: Grayson Rodriguez (5-1, 2.32)
  • Bowie: at Altoona, 6:00 PM. Starter: Zach Peek (0-2, 4.82)
  • Aberdeen: vs. Hudson Valley, 7:05 PM. Starter: Carlos Tavera (1-1, 2.76)
  • Delmarva: at Myrtle Beach, 7:05 PM. Starter: Carter Baumler (0-0, 0.00)