Tuesday Farm Report: Tourists Rising Out of 1st Half Ashes
To say that the Rockies Low-A affiliate at Asheville struggled in the first half of the season is an understatement.
The Tourists, however, are making up for lost time.
They are in first place in the South Division of the South Atlantic League, having opened the second-half by winning 14 of 23 games, a marked difference from their 27-42 struggle through the first half.
Chad Spanberger, who was good in the first half is even better in the second half. He has appeared in 22 of 23 games, and is hitting .353 with four home runs and 15 RBI.
Shortstop Ryan Vilade, the Rockies highest draft pick from 2017, has made a quick adjustment in his first full professional season. The second-round selection out of Stillwater (Okla.) High School, who hit .230 in the first half, is hitting .330 in the second half. After driving in 22 runs in 60 first-half games, he already has 14 RBI out of the lead-off spot in the second half.
Catcher Nic Motley, who was in extended spring after hitting .198 in his debut at Rookie Grand Junction a year ago, has hit .286 since his arrival with two games remaining in the first half.
And, Todd Czinege, a 29th round draft choice in 2017 out of Villanova, hit .304 with 10 home runs at Rookie Grand Junction last year, and opened the 2018 season with Grand Junction, hitting .358 before his promotion to Asheville, where he is hitting .341 with four home runs in 11 games.
AAA Albuquerque (45-49) lost 6-3 against El Paso. Second baseman Drew Weeks (.280) was 2-for-4 with his seventh home run, and two runs scored, but the Isotopes lost for the seventh time in eight games. Starting pitcher David Holmberg (5.29) pitched three shutout innings, allowing one hit and striking out four. Nelson Gonzalez (3-2, 5.44) suffered the loss, allowing four runs, three earned, on six hits and a walk, striking out five in three innings.
AA Hartford (45-47) lost 6-3 against Reading. Reliever Heath Holder (0-1, 13.50) made his Double-A debut, allowing two runs on three hits in 1 1/3 innings of relief, and suffering the loss. Sean Nolin (6.14) started and allowed two earned runs on three hits and a walk, striking out two, in 3 2/3 innings. Leftfielder Brian Mundell (.267) had a single, double and triple, and second baseman Brandon Bednar (.329) was 3-for-4 with two RBI.
High A Lancaster (14-12 2nd half; 47-49) lost 7-6 in 12 innings against Lake Elsinore. Two errors led to Lake Elsinore scoring two unearned runs in the 12. Brian Baker (3-2, 4.58) worked 1 1/3 innings and was charged with the two unearned runs,. Ty Culbreth (5.19) started and allowed four earned runs on nine hits and a walk, striking out five. Manny Melendez (.282) hit his third home run and scored three runs.
Low Asheville (14-9 2nd half; 41-51 overall) Frederis Parra (1-1, 4.58) worked eight shutout innings, giving up six hits and a walk, striking out two. The tourists hit five home runs, two by Ramon Marcelino (.231), who after going deep in the second and ninth innings has 18 home runs this season. Bret Boswell (.306) had a three-run home run in the third. Casey Golden (.279) delivered a 465-foot shot in the sixth. Todd Czinege (.341) hit a two-run home run in the ninth.
Short-season A Boise (18-13) won 3-2 at Hillsboro. Alex Bird (1-1, 4.82) earned the victory in relief, allowing one run on four hits and a walk, striking out one. Hunter Williams (1.20) earned his first save. Javier Medina (6.35) started and allowed one run on one walk in two innings. Matt Hearn (.406) had three hits, and Luke Morgan (.250) hit a two-run home run in the fourth.
Rookie Grand Junction (14-17) lost 5-0 at Great Falls. First-round draft pick Ryan Rolison (1.80) worked three shutout innings, allowing one hit and one walk, striking out four, in his second professional appearance. Michael Agis (2-3, 4.80) gave up two runs, one earned, on one hit and two walks, striking out one of the two batters he retired. Niko Decolati (.314), the sixth-round draft choice out of Loyola Marymount, was 2-for-3.
Dominican Summer League South (15-22) won 3-2 at the Angels in a rain-shortened, six-inning game. Helcris Olivarez (3-1, 2.93) allowed two hits and a walk, striking out five, in five innings. Felix Ramires (3.43) earned his second save, Julio Carreras scored on an errant pick off attempt in the second, and Ronaiker Palma singled home a run in the third, and Jesus Baptista singled home a run in the fourth..
Dominican Summer League Northeast (20-15) was suspended because of rain.