WOOOOOOOOOOO FIRST PLACE!!! It's yet another good day to be a D-backs fan, as Joe Saunders twirled a fantastic game tonight to put the Snakes back on top of the division, making last year's Dan Haren trade just a little less painful to remember. Add in the awesome season that Tyler Skaggs is having, cementing himself as a top-50 prospect in baseball, and the outcome of that trade seems to be headed towards a best-case scenario outcome. Oh yeah, there's also this guy...
Snakelet of the Day
Patrick Corbin (Double-A): 7 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 8:1 K:BB, 7:6 GO:AO
Triple-A: Reno 3, Salt Lake 2. (34-23) An all-around good day of work for the Aces, led by starting pitcher Matt Torra, who is looking to bounce back from a tough start to the year to return to his 2010 consistency at Triple-A. Torra worked seven strong innings, scattering seven hits and giving up just two runs with 4:1 K:BB and 8:6 GO:AO ratios. The Aces A-bullpen did good work, too, with Kam Mickolio throwing a scoreless eighth inning and Bryan Shaw striking out one with two ground-outs in a scoreless ninth to notch his third Triple-A save. The offense was largely provided by Collin Cowgill, who crushed a two-run homer in the third inning off of Angels swingman Matt Palmer. Cowgill had two hits on the night, Evan Frey had a double and three hits, and newly-acquired Lucas May had two hits, including a sixth-inning RBI double that proved to be the difference in the game.
Double-A: Mobile 5, Huntsville 0. (32-34) Another impressive outing from Patrick Corbin, who may perhaps be showing some long-awaited consistency on the mound for the BayBears. Seven scoreless innings with five hits, one walk, and eight strikeouts? Yes sir, I'll have another. Since giving up nine runs in five innings on May 19, Corbin has thrown 19.2 shutout innings over three starts, striking out 20 and walking five. Between Corbin and Charles Brewer - who said on Twitter that he'll "be back out there soon" after being hit on the hand with a pitch in his last start - the D-backs have two of their top pitching prospects looking close to big-league ready. The stud of the day at the plate was Ryan Wheeler, who fell a triple short of the cycle. I'll admit that I may have been overlooking Wheeler this year up until now - he's had a great year at Double-A, hitting .325/.397/.479. A little more power might be nice, and his BABIP of .364 is likely to regress, but an .877 OPS is nothing to shake a stick at. Elsewhere in the lineup, A.J. Pollock singled and homered, while Jacob Elmore had a three-hit night. Your Daily Goldschmidt: A no-hit night for Paul with a pair of strikeouts, though he reached base once on a walk.
Hi-A: The Rawhide's last game at San Jose was postponed.
Low-A: South Bend 3, Quad Cities 5. (29-27) Young 2010 Texas high-school signee Tyler Green was awesome for the SilverHawks, striking out eight and walking three in just five innings of work, surrendering five hits and one earned run. Unfortunately, Green's piggyback partner Jeffrey Shields blew the early lead that Green and the offense had built up, giving up four runs - three earned - in three innings of relief. Shields struck out two, walked one, and surrendered a solo homer. Only three SilverHawks batters managed to get even a single hit on the night, but two of them - center fielder Ender Inciarte and second baseman Mike Freeman - had impressive nights at the plate. Inciarte collected two hits to bring his season average up to .313, and whacked his second triple of the year. Freeman had three hits, including a double, while also stealing his 12th base of the year.
DSL: D-backs 0, Twins 4. (2-4) Don't take my word for it, because it's based on nothing but numbers, but 19-year-old right-hander Juan Valdez looks pretty legit. Valdez went five scoreless innings today, giving up two hits, hitting one batter, and striking out seven. Unfortunately, in spite of four walks and four hit-by-pitches from DSL-Twins pitchers, the DSL-backs were unable to scratch across a run. 19-year-old shortstop Pedro Ruiz went 2-3 with a double, a walk, and a HBP.