The Rays such a great major league rotation and four out of five of them are young. Why should we care about the minor league starting pitchers? Because you can never have enough pitching. And when someone leaves, someone will need to take his place to keep it rolling for the Rays staff. (Note: this is coming out way late. Sorry about that.)
Triple-A International League: Toledo Mud Hens (DET) 11, Durham Bulls 1
Shane Dyer has to have his best command for every game. When he doesn’t, he gets killed. On Saturday he allowed 6 runs on 10 hits in just 3.2 innings, striking out 1 while walking 2. He actually managed a 5-2 groundout to flyout ratio, but boy was he hittable. Jacob Turner, the Tigers top prospect, wasn’t dominant at all either, but he battled to go 6.2 innings allowing just 1 run on 8 hits, striking out 2 while walking 2. The Bulls went just 1 for 7 with runners in scoring position in the game. On offense, Jeff Salazar, Matt Mangini, and Cole Figueroa each went 2 for 4, with Mangini doubling and scoring and Figueroa doubling and driving him in, and Reid Brignac went 1 for 3 with a hit AND a walk in the same game. Imagine that.
High-A Florida State League: Charlotte Stone Crabs 6, St. Lucie Mets 4
Luke Bailey is back. Bailey missed from mid-April to early June from injury, but he improved to 3 for 10 since coming back on Saturday night, going 1 for 4 with his first home run of the season, a 2-run shot, and that would be the difference in the Stone Crabs’ 6-4 win over the St. Lucie Mets. Braulio Lara turned in a halfway-decent outing for Charlotte, going 5.2 innings allowing 4 hits, 2 walks, and striking out just 1 but allowing just 1 run, and other than Bailey, Phil Wunderlich was a player with a big offensive day going 2 for 4 with 2 doubles and 2 RBI. But there was one alarming thing in this game: Derek Dietrich exited after going 1 for 1 in this game. He better not be hurt now.
Low-A Midwest League: Bowling Green Hot Rods 8, Dayton Dragons (CIN) 1
Always nice when you have a game that everything clicks. Felipe Rivero was great in this one, going 6 innings allowing just 1 run on 3 hits, striking out 4 while walking 2. He also forced a 9-1 groundout to flyout ratio. Andrew Bellatti closed out the game with 3 no-hit innings in the blow out. The 8 runs came from a lineup where 8 players got hits, everyone got on base at least once, and 6 different players had RBI. No one actually homered in this game for either team. Drew Vettleson went 2 for 6 with a triple, 2 RBI, and 2 runs scored. Cameron Seitzer went 3 for 5 with 2 RBI. Juniel Querecuto also went 3 for 5, driving in one, scoring one, and stealing a base. It was an outstanding day for the Hot Rods and a game they’ll aspire to moving forward.