While Kutter Crawford looks comfortable in Triple-A.
Worcester L 3-4
Yairo Muñoz, SS: 1-4, 1 R, 1 K
Delino DeShields, CF: 2-4, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 R, 3 RBI
Jeter Downs, 2B: 0-3, 1 BB, 1 K
Kutter Crawford (SP): 5 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 0 BB, 7 K (95 pitches)
Matt Andriese: 1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K (12 pitches)
Kevin McCarthy: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K (12 pitches)
Kaleb Ort (L; BS): 1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 0 K (28 pitches)
Well, first thing’s first: Muñoz did indeed extend his hit streak to 30 games. We’ll have more on him later in the day, so I won’t keep going on that one. I will mention DeShields, who had his best game since coming over to the Red Sox organization last week. The outfielder has never really hit for much power in the majors, but he did give the Red Sox their only two extra-base hits in this game, and two of their three hits total on the day. We also got another strong outing from Crawford, who is not really having much trouble at all in adjusting to Triple-A lineups. He’s now got a 3.38 ERA in 16 innings with Worcester, striking out 21 and walking four. Also, Andriese is working his way back, which feels more like a threat than anything else given what is happening at the major-league level.
Portland L 0-5
Pedro Castellanos, RF: 0-4, 1 K
Devlin Granberg, LF/1B: 0-4, 1 K
Tyreque Reed, 1B: 0-2, 1 K
Hudson Potts, 3B: 0-4, 2 K
Ronaldo Hernández, C: 0-4, 1 K
Jeisson Rosario, CF: 0-2, 1 BB, 2 K
Brayan Bello (SP; L): 5.1 IP, 5 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 11 K (92 pitches)
Joan Martinez: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K (15 pitches)
It’s been a little bit of an adjustment for Bello since getting up to Double-A, which certainly doesn’t make him all that unique, and it’s not as though there aren’t any good signs. In this start for example, he struck out 11. That in and of itself is impressive. But there have been some issues with command, and in this one he added two hit batters to the three walks, and he also gave up a home run. His ERA in Portland is now 5.08 over 39 innings, but he’s also racked up 58 strikeouts. Having just turned 22 a couple of months ago, this adjustment period is normal, but we should be looking for strides before the season closes out.
Greenville W 2-1
Christian Koss, SS: 0-4, 3 K
Tyler Dearden, DH: 1-4, 1 2B, 1 RBI, 2 K
Brandon Howlett, 3B: 0-3, 1 BB, 1 K
Joe Davis, 1B: 0-4
Stephen Scott, RF: 2-3, 1 2B, 1 HR, 1 BB, 1 R, 1 RBI
Brandon Walter (SP): 5 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 K (66 pitches)
Jacob Wallace (SV): 2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K (31 pitches)
This was a day full of starting pitching prospects moving up the ladder, with Walter making his sixth start with Greenville. It hasn’t always been smooth in terms of results, with a couple of rough starts early in his tenure, but he’s settling in in all aspects right now. Over his last three starts, the righty has allowed just one earned run (three total) over 17 innings of work, striking out 25 while walking only four. We’ve talked about it before, but given that he will turn 25 right before the minor-league season ends, it’s probably worth getting him a chance in Double-A to see how he looks against that competition before he likely starts there in 2022. Meanwhile, Wallace has been one of the disappointing arms in the system this year, but he looks like he’s turning a corner of late, especially in his last two outings. Over those appearances he’s tossed four scoreless innings with nine strikeouts and one walk.
Salem W 5-4
Nick Yorke, 2B: 3-3, 2 HR, 1 BB, 2 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB, 1 CS
Gilberto Jimenez, CF: 0-4, 2 K
Matthew Lugo, DH: 0-4, 2 K
Ceddanne Rafaela, SS: 0-4, 1 K, 1 SB, 2 E
Nicholas Northcut, 1B: 2-3, 2 2B, 2 R, 1 K
Bradley Blalock (SP): 5 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 4 K (64 pitches)
It was never really a cause for concern when Yorke got off to a slow start. Last year’s first round pick was hitting just .195/.264/.220 over the first month of the season, but he was also a kid who had just graduated high school the year prior playing in full-season ball. Of course, he was also a surprise first round pick, and there were still some skeptical of his actual talent level. Well, I think that skepticism has gone away. Now all these months later, he’s slashing .312/.405/.456 for the season, and the power is really starting to show up now. It’s still not expected to be a big part of his game, but he needs to show the potential for some to be an everyday player at the highest level. He is still very far away from that status, but the power potential is being shown, and really he’s one of the best hitters in this system at this point, full stop. Blalock also deserves a shoutout here, having allowed just one earned run over his last three starts with a strikeout per inning to go with it.
Player of the Day: Nick Yorke
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