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Red Sox minor league roundup: Steps forward for Matt Barnes; Wendell Rijo scorching; Mars streaking

07.28.14 at 1:46 pm ET
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A brief look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Sunday:

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX: 3-1 LOSS AT SCRANTON/WILKES-BARRE (YANKEES)

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– The PawSox saw their 11-game winning streak conclude. Pawtucket broadcaster Josh Maurer does an excellent job dissecting the streak.

– Right-hander Matt Barnes had his second straight solid start coming out of the All-Star Break, tossing five innings and allowing two runs while matching a season-high with six strikeouts. He gave up four hits (three singles and a double) while walking two. Barnes now has back-to-back outings of at least five innings and two runs allowed, the first time he’s had such a stretch since accomplishing the feat in four straight starts to open his season in Pawtucket.

– Feats of Mookie: Streaking (modestly). Mookie Betts went 1-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to seven games, and he’s hitting .361/.395/.556 in his eight games since returning to Triple-A Pawtucket. He did, however, strike out twice on Sunday and now has whiffed nine times while walking just twice since returning to the minors, suggesting that he’s still regaining his timing at the plate after navigating through part-time duty in the big leagues.

Ryan Lavarnway, playing first base, went 2-for-4 with a double. He’s 3-for-6 with a double and two walks in his two games back at Pawtucket, and 8-for-22 with two doubles, a homer and four walks overall during his rehab assignment while returning from a broken wrist.

DOUBLE-A PORTLAND SEA DOGS: 8-5 WIN AT NEW BRITAIN (TWINS)

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– For the first time in his eight starts in Portland, right-hander Luis Diaz gave up more than three runs. The 22-year-old permitting five runs on seven hits (a single, five doubles, a triple) in five innings while punching out four and walking two.

– Left fielder Keury De La Cruz, in his third game off the DL, went 2-for-5 with a double and homer. The 22-year-old snapped a string of 16 straight games without an extra-base hit, a drought that suggests that his swing-first approach (he hasn’t walked in 14 games in July) limits his ability to hone in on pitches against which he can apply his ability to damage the baseball. In 40 games this year, he’s hitting .282/.292/.389.

HIGH-A SALEM RED SOX: 7-1 WIN VS. MYRTLE BEACH (RANGERS)

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– Right-hander Pat Light closed out an outstanding July with a career-high seven innings in which he allowed one run on four hits (three singles and a solo homer), walked three, struck out two and got an eye-opening 13 outs on the ground. After entering the month with a 6.39 ERA in his first 12 starts following an early-season promotion, the 2012 supplemental first-rounder went 3-1 with a 2.40 ERA while operating as a groundball machine, holding opponents to a .211 average in the month despite getting just 13 strikeouts (against 12 walks) in 30 innings.

– First baseman Jantzen Witte snapped a three-game, 0-for-9 stretch (and a 1-for-19 run over five games) by going 3-for-3 with a homer and a walk. The 24-year-old now has 18 extra-base hits in 34 games since moving up from Greenville, forging a .279/.336/.473 line.

SINGLE-A GREENVILLE DRIVE: 8-4 WIN AT HAGERSTOWN (NATIONALS)

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Forrestt Allday, in his first game in three weeks, went 3-for-4 with a triple and drove in two runs. The 23-year-old is hitting .274/.380/.360 in 52 games during his first full pro season.

Wendell Rijo‘s spectacular month continued, as the 18-year-old went 2-for-5 with a double and walk to improve his line to .286/.378/.600 with 12 extra-base hits in 19 games. He’d never before slugged over .500 in a month. While Rijo has shown impressive offensive potential, the fact that he is a second baseman — and without the freakish athleticism of a Mookie Betts to permit him to move all over the field — suggests that he represents a potentially redundant asset. He’s so low in the minors that it could be years before a potential bottleneck; nonetheless, while he fits the profile of an above-average offensive second baseman in the big leagues, if teams ask for him as part of the return on a package that might feature more big league-ready young talent going to the Red Sox, it would be hard to imagine Rijo being off limits.

SHORT-SEASON SINGLE-A LOWELL SPINNERS: 9-3 LOSS VS. BROOKLYN (METS)

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– Outfielder Danny Mars went 1-for-3 and got hit by a pitch, extending his hitting streak to 10 games (.325/.372/.450 line during that time) and his streak of consecutive games reaching base by walk or hit to 15. In 25 games, the 20-year-old switch-hitter has a .353/.416/.510 line, including marks of .397/.443/.562 against righties.

– Shortstop Mauricio Dubon went 1-for-4 to extend his hitting streak to eight games during which he’s hitting .419/.406/.613 with a pair of homers among his 13 hits.

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