AAA: Round Rock 5, Salt Lake (LAA) 3
Round Rock: 8 hits, 1 walk, 8 strikeouts
Opponent: 6 hits, 1 walk, 12 strikeouts
Record: 13-6, 2 G up
SP Cole Winn: 3.1 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 7 SO, 48 P / 36 S, 2.20 ERA
RP Ryder Ryan: 2.2 IP, 1 H ,1 R, 0 BB, 3 SO, 2.13 ERA
RP Nick Snyder: 1 IP, 1 H ,0 R, 0 BB, 1 SO, 0.00 ERA
RP Jesus Tinoco: 2 IP, 0 H ,0 R, 1 BB, 1 SO, 1.69 ERA
CF Josh Smith: 2-4, .286/.351/.457
2B Ryan Dorow: 2-4, 2B, .180/.226/.240
The good: Winn has appeared to emphasize different offspeed pitches in each of his three starts. Last night’s assignment was “sequencing fastballs and changes to maximize hitter futility.” The Bees drew air on 15 of their 36 swings against him, including seven of 10 swings on changeups. As I’ve mentioned, it’s usually a firm offering, giving the appearance of a screwball or simply a softer fastball, but he convincingly sells it as a heater. Winn largely shelved his slider. He saved his first curve of the night for game’s ninth batter, registering another swinging strike three. He then whiffed the last batter of the 3rd on another curve.
The bad: In the 4th, the third-hardest hit off Cole Winn this season (105.9 MPH) connected with the inside of Winn’s left heel or ankle, forcing him from the game. Winn walked off without assistance but was limping. Hopefully, it’s only a bruise.
AA: Frisco 3, at Midland (OAK) 4
Frisco: 5 hits, 4 walks, 11 strikeouts
Opponent: 8 hits, 8 walks, 9 strikeouts
Record: 10-6, 1 G up
SP Zak Kent: 2.2 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 1 BB, 3 SO, 59 P / 37 S, 8.10 ERA
RP Tyler Thomas: 3.1 IP, 0 H ,0 R, 3 BB, 4 SO, 3.52 ERA
CF JP Martinez: 3-4, 2B, HR (3), SB (6), .286/.375/.490
Midland scored the winner in the 9th without a hit when Kyle McCann hit a deep-enough fly following three walks. Lucas Jacobsen was ordinary for the first time this season, issuing two 9th-inning walks after a clean 8th. Jacobsen’s last pitch wasn’t actually thrown, as he was penalized with the first automatic ball I’ve seen called on a three-ball count.
Outfielder-in-training Dustin Harris made a nice catch against the short wall in left to rob extra bases. I think an average outfielder makes that play, but it was far from a gimme. Harris wasn’t going to catch it without running into the wall at a decent pace, and he accepted that fate without easing up when his spikes first touched the warning track.
Justin Foscue and Blaine Crim both reached on a single and walk.
High-A: Hickory 10, Greenville (BOS) 6
Hickory: 13 hits, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts
Opponent: 7 hits, 4 walks, 13 strikeouts
Record: 7-9, 4 GB
SP Ricky Vanasco: 4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 SO, 54 P / 36 S, 4.50 ERA
RP Eudrys Manon: 2.2 IP, 1 H ,0 R, 0 BB, 5 SO, 4.15 ERA
RF Aaron Zavala: 3-5, 2B, .167/.365/.229
2B Thomas Saggese: 3-5, .281/.339/.421
SS Keyber Rodriguez: 1-4, HR (1), .306/.346/.388
C Cody Freeman: 3-4, HR (1), .195/.298/.268
Per Mark Parker, Vanasco’s fastball velocity improved to 94-97 in contrast to the 89-93 range previously observed by Parker and The Athletic’s Keith Law. Also per Parker, Vanasco missed 12 bats: seven on heaters, four changes and a slider.
Five Years Ago Yesterday
“Kiner-Falefa has reached safely in 15 of 17 games and improved his OBP to .382. He’s started seven games at catcher, five at second, one at third and three at short. At this pace, he’ll catch 50-55 games, well above last year’s 31.”
IKF would end up starting 31 games at catcher, same as 2016, as the Rangers tapered his use to roughly one per week around the middle of the season. He would make only ten starts at short all season and spend the plurality of his time at third.