|Red Sox Minor League Roundup: Blake Swihart’s huge day; Mark Prior returns; Brandon Jacobs putting up a Middlebrooks line||07.08.12 at 8:58 am ET|
A quick look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Saturday…
TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX: 3-2 WIN VS. SYRACUSE (NATIONALS)
– Jacoby Ellsbury, in his first game with Triple-A Pawtucket, went 0-for-4 with a strikeout (looking), two groundouts and a foul pop-out. He also played seven innings in center field. He’s now 4-for-23 (.174) with a pair of doubles, a homer, four walks and five strikeouts in seven rehab games.
– Mark Prior, activated from the disabled list on Friday, pitched in his first game since June 21. None of the three batters he faced made contact, as he walked two and struck out one. He earned the win for an effort in which nine of the 19 pitches he threw were strikes.
– Zach Stewart continued his strong start with the PawSox. Though he isn’t striking out anyone, he’s getting loads of grounders, resulting in fickle run yields. On Saturday, he tossed six shutout innings before stumbling in the seventh, ultimately permitting two runs on seven hits (four singles, three doubles) while walking two. He did not strike out a batter.
Stewart’s first three starts in Pawtucket have been somewhat similar from a statistical standpoint to what Aaron Cook was doing in April. He has just five strikeouts in 18 1/3 innings, but he has yet to give up a homer, he’s walked just two and he now has a 1.96 ERA.
– Jose Iglesias went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles and an RBI. It was his second multi-hit game in his last three contests.
DOUBLE-A PORTLAND SEA DOGS: 4-3 LOSS AT TRENTON (YANKEES)
– Jackie Bradley Jr. went 3-for-5 with a pair of doubles. In 18 games since his promotion from High-A Salem, he’s hitting .384/.446/.507/.953. He leads all of minor league baseball with 33 doubles, seven of which have come in Double-A.
– Pete Hissey went 3-for-4 for his third three-hit game of the season. In 22 games since returning from a broken hand in mid-June, he’s hitting .344/.379/.459/.838.
HIGH-A SALEM RED SOX: 9-4 LOSS VS. FREDERICK (ORIOLES)
– Brandon Jacobs continued to rake, going 2-for-3 with a pair of doubles and a walk. He’s up to five multi-hit games in his last seven contests, bringing his season line up to .288/.344/.443/.787 with seven homers and 20 doubles through 67 games. By way of comparison, Will Middlebrooks — like Jacobs, a player who was drafted as a two-sport athlete, someone whose football background meant that he was less advanced than other high school players — hit .282/.345/.429/.773 with four homers through his first 67 games as a 21-year-old in High-A. (Jacobs, too, is 21 in his High-A season.) In other words, while Jacobs’ numbers are hardly eye-popping, they do little to diminish the idea that Jacobs is one of the more promising offensive prospects in the Red Sox farm system.
– Daily “Christian Vazquez is on Fire” update: 3-for-4 with three singles and an RBI. In 12 second-half games, he’s hitting .400/.491/.667/1.157.
SINGLE-A GREENVILLE DRIVE: 5-4 WIN VS. ROME (BRAVES)
– Blake Swihart had the best offensive game of his pro career, going 3-for-3 with a homer (his fourth), a triple and a walk. Yet it may have been his RBI single that provided his most compelling plate appearance of the night, if not his first pro season. With the go-ahead run on third and one out, Swihart fouled off 10 of 14 pitches before fighting off a bloop RBI single to right against left-hander (and former Red Sox pitcher) Fabian Williamson for the game-winning run. After a poor start to the year, he’s now hitting .333/.375/.504/.879 since May 15, improving his season line to .265/.312/.394/.706.
– Right-hander Noe Ramirez tossed six innings while allowing one run on four hits. He walked four and struck out eight, both career highs. In six starts, he has a 2.89 ERA with 23 strikeouts and seven walks in 28 innings.
– Outfielder Keury De La Cruz blasted his team-high 13th homer of the year to extend the 20-year-old’s hitting streak to 11 games.
SHORT-SEASON SINGLE-A LOWELL SPINNERS: 3-0 LOSS AT BATAVIA (CARDINALS)
– Infielder Mike Miller went 2-for-4 for his second straight multi-hit game. He also swiped his fifth base of the season in as many attempts.
– Right-hander Justin Haley, the Red Sox’ sixth-round pick out of Fresno, tossed a pair of perfect innings, striking out two and eliciting three groundouts.
– The Spinners have now lost nine straight and 13 of 14.
ROOKIE LEVEL GCL RED SOX: 3-0 LOSS AT GCL TWINS
– Right-hander Sergio Gomez, an 18-year-old who is in the GCL for the third straight year, punched out six batters and walked none over five innings in which he permitted two runs (one earned). It was the third time this season that Gomez has struck out six, matching a career-high that he had achieved just once in his prior two GCL stints. He has 21 strikeouts and four walks in 17 innings this year.
DOMINICAN SUMMER LEAGUE RED SOX: 3-0 WIN VS. DSL METS
– Right-hander Dioscar Romero turned in a spectacular outing, tossing four no-hit innings before giving up his first and only hit (a double) with one out in the fifth en route to five shutout innings in which he struck out five and walked none. The 6-foot-3 17-year-old now has 15 strikeouts and 13 walks in 20 2/3 innings.
– Shortstop Raymel Flores had a bases-loaded, three-run double to left to account for the Red Sox’ offense, just the third double that Flores has this season. However, the fact that he has just three doubles does not reflect an absence of extra-base pop, but instead the fact that he’s been too fast for doubles most of the season. He has eight triples.
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