Dunedin 6 Clearwater 2
RHP Nick Frasso was electric in his pro debut as the D-Jays won their second straight.
The athletic 2020 4th rounder retired six of the seven hitters he faced, a first inning walk the only blemish on his night of work. Frasso fanned two, and generally showed Low A hitters the kind of velo they don’t see often:
Miguel Hiraldo had three hits and drove in a run to pace the Dunedin offence. Alejandro Melean and Juan DePaula each tossed three innings of shutout relief in support of Frasso.
New Hampshire 11 Portland 2
LJ Talley had a career-best six RBIs and the Fisher Cats plated 8 runs in the 3rd inning to top the Sea Dogs. https://twitter.com/fishercats/status/1395535364006232069?s=21
Talley knocked out a pair of round trippers (including a grand slam), his first long balls of the season. Samad Taylor had his second four-hit game of the week, bashing his 2nd homer of the season as part of a 4-4 night.
Starter Maximo Castillo went five solid innings for the W. Otto Lopez extended his hit streak to 13 games, and Austin Martin made his return to the lineup after missing the first two games of the series.
Worcester 4 Buffalo 1
Thomas Hatch pitched three strong innings in a rehab start for the Bisons, but the Bisons offence was stymied by Sox starter Kyle Hart.
Hatch gave up a pair of runs (one earned), and struck out four. Kevin Smith’s third home run of the season was the only run Buffalo managed to plate.
Vancouver 2 Hillsboro 1
CJ Van Eyk had by far his best career outing, going six innings and striking out 9 as the C’s edged their stadium-mate their 8th win in a row. A bases-loaded walk to Rafael Lantigua brought the winning run home in the top of the 9th, and Parker Caracci retired the side in the bottom half of the inning for his second Save.
When a fellow blogger looked over the C’s roster prior to Opening Day, we agreed that the C’s would struggle to score runs. Certainly, they’ve been middle-of-the-pack in the High A West in OPS and average, and they garnered only two hits last night, but they sit atop the league standings two-plus weeks into the season.
How have they done it?
With outstanding pitching, for one thing. The C’s seem to get a decent start every night, and their league-low 2.80 staff ERA would seem to indicate that pitching overall is a team strength.
On offence, the C’s have players that can get on base, and take advantage of scoring opportunities. Spencer Horwitz’ 20 walks leads the league, and demonstrates the patience much of the batting order has. Horwitz leads the league in OBP, and he, along with Tanner Kirwer and Cameron Eden, are in the top 10 in several offensive categories.
Before the season began, C’s Manager Donnie Murphy said his team would grind things out, just like he did when he played. That’s been a winning strategy so far.