All kinds of interesting pitching performances today, so let's get to it.
High-A -- San Jose 6, High Desert 3 -- Box
I don't usually start with High Desert, particularly for a losing effort, but Stephen Landazuri (Talk40 #24) is a guy whom I've been touting for a long time as "one to watch." He's never gotten a lot of love from anyone else, so I'm gonna keep pushing.
It disturbed me that he started the year in Clinton when he should have been slotted for High Desert, but not to worry. He pitched his way up the ladder quickly, and now, Saturday:
5.0 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 K
His High Desert ERA is down to 3.57 and his overall K/9 is up to 8.9.
The game itself fell apart when George Mieses (26intheMix) gave up three runs in the 8th. Nor was there much excitement on offense, with Jabari Blash (Watch List) managing only a double instead of his usual feats of prowess.
AA -- Jackson 3, Montgomery 1 -- Box
And right up there with Landazuri is Chance Ruffin (Watch List), whom I dropped all the way out of the Spec66 after he mysteriously lost all effectiveness last year. (He was No. 19 on the original 2012 list.) Well, now he's been re-made as a starter, and is showing why he was drafted a few slots after Taijuan Walker (Talk40 #2) and why he was considered a key part of the Doug Fister trade:
6.0 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K
With Casper Wells already in the dumpster and Francisco Martinez (Talk40 #40) teetering on the edge of the dumpster about to fall in, it's up to Charlie Furbush and Ruffin to provide any dedemption to the trade.
I'd like to see Ruffin go to AAA after Jeremy Bonderman opts for free agency (though I'd also like to see Walker get that shot).
Low-A -- Clinton 1, Quad Cities 0 [7 innings] -- Box
Low-A -- Quad Cities 6, Clinton 5 [7 innings] -- Box
And in Iowa, it was the Teen Titan double bill.
OK, so Pike maybe doesn't belong in the group today, and it was his second game in a row with a bout of wildness. But his ERA is still just 2.55.
AAA -- Tacoma 9, Reno 5 -- Box
No, Blake Beavan didn't join the pitching parade (6.2 IP, 5 ER, 4 K). Three of his runs came on a pair of homers that Beavan coughed up to longtime AAA star Kila Ka'aihue, whom -- interestingly enough -- we were just discussing in the Rich Poythress thread.
But the Rainiers prevailed with offense of their own, a nice chunk of which came from ... starting first baseman Jesus Montero: double, triple, walk. The idea of a Montero triple remains intriguing, but maybe the AAA wake-up call is working.
Interestingly, every Rainier in the lineup got a hit except AAA first-timer Brad Miller (Talk40 #6). He did, however, draw a pair of walks in his debut. For those seeking to read tea leaves: in their first game on the same roster, Miller played SS and Nick Franklin (Talk40 #7) 2b. Those tea leaves have been setting up that way for a long time, of course. Franklin had two singles.
Tacoma has an afternoon game in Reno, with Hector Noesi slated to be on the hill, while the aforementioned Taijuan Walker is set to pitch for Jackson at night.