Triple-A: Worcester Red Sox (Red Sox) 2, Norfolk Tides 1
This space is usually reserved for the heroic performances of GUNNAR HENDERSON and Jordan Westburg, but Tuesday night the Tides bats fell almost silent in their loss to the Red Sox. Orioles Top 30 prospects Jordan Westburg (#5), Tevin Vavra (#12) and Yusniel Diaz (#23) went a combined 0-11 with three strikeouts against Worcester.
HENDERSON did lead off the fourth inning with a triple—one of Norfolk’s only three hits on Tuesday—but was left stranded after Diaz, Rylan Bannon and Richie Martin all failed to get the ball out of the infield. Bannon did make up for it with a solo HR in the ninth, but the rally fell short as Richie Martin flew out to left for the final out.
The positive takeaway from the loss was the continued excellence of DL Hall (#4 prospect). The electric lefty threw 5.2 innings, allowing two hits, and an unearned run while striking out eight Red Sox. The former first-round pick now has 89 strikeouts in 13 starts for Norfolk, for a strikeout rate of almost 15 Ks per nine innings. Walks continue to be Hall’s only issue, as he walked four on Tuesday. Getting his walk rate under control, currently at almost six per nine innings, seems to be Hall’s final hurdle before he’s reading to make his MLB debut.
Double-A: Bowie Baysox vs. Akron RubberDucks (Guardians) postponed due to rain
Thunderstorms Tuesday night meant that this game will be made up as part of a doubleheader on Thursday. Any and all appreciation of Colton Cowser, Connor Norby and the rest of the Baysox can resume in earnest tomorrow.
High-A: Aberdeen IronBirds vs. Jersey Shore BlueClaws (Phillies) postponed due to rain
In more upsetting weather-related news, those same thunderstorms meant that Heston Kjerstad’s (#8 prospect) High-A debut will have to wait one more night. After destroying baseballs at Delmarva to the tune of a .463 average and a 1.201 OPS in 22 games, hopefully the former No. 2 overall pick in the draft will continue his rampant start to his minor league career with the IronBirds Wednesday night. This game will also be made up as part of a doubleheader on Thursday.
Low-A: Delmarva Shorebirds 7, Carolina Mudcats (Brewers) 3.
The graduation of Kjerstad to High-A certainly didn’t slow down the Shorebirds’ offense Tuesday night in North Carolina. Designated hitter Elio Prado led the way offensively for Delmarva, hitting a solo home run to lead off the fifth that tied the game at two—and sparked a three-run inning for the Shorebirds. Prado would add an RBI double in the sixth to push the Shorebird lead to 5-2. Overall he finished the day 2-4 with 2 RBIs, a walk and a run scored. Outfielder Trendon Craig also had an impressive showing, going 3-5 with an RBI double in the fifth. Overall, every Shorebirds’ player, except catcher Wilkin Grullon, registered a hit Tuesday night.
Starting pitcher Conor Grady also had one of his strongest performances of the season against the Mudcats. The former 18th-round pick threw six innings—only the second time he’s made it that deep into a game all season—allowing five hits, two earned runs and striking out five. Despite his 6.05 ERA on the season, Grady has been a strikeout machine for the Shorebirds, posting 58 Ks in 58 innings pitched.
Wednesday’s Scheduled Games:
- Norfolk Tides vs. Worcester Red Sox, 6:35 PM. Starter: Michael Baumann
- Bowie Baysox vs. Akron Rubber Ducks, 12:05 PM. Starter: Noah Denoyer
- Aberdeen IronBirds vs. Jersey Shore BlueClaws, 7:05 PM. Starter: Houston Roth
- Delmarva Shorebirds at Carolina Mudcats, 11 AM. Starter: Deivy Cruz