4/9 MiLB Wrap: Arroyo Leads Augusta Surge

If you’ve been keeping up with these minor league recaps over the past week (I failed to post one yesterday), you’ll notice that I’ve been trying to focus on a different player each night. Unofficially, you might call the featured player a sort of “prospect of the night.” I gave the honor to pitchers over the first four of five days, and have now started to give some attention to the hitting prospects in the organization.

Christian Arroyo, #7 on the Cove Chatter 100 preseason prospects list, is our featured player today. Arroyo broke out of his early slump for Augusta last night, going 3-4 at the plate and starting an 8-run rally in the 3rd with a 2-RBI single up the middle. Coincidentally, last night was also Christian’s first start at SS, as he’d been manning 2B in each of the Greenjackets’ first 6 games. Yesterday also marked another change for the Giants 2013 1st round pick, as the Augusta coaching staff swapped Arroyo and 3B Brandon Bednar in the lineup – Arroyo moved up to the #2 spot, while Bednar dropped from 2 to 3 on a night that saw a few other lineup switches as well.

The Giants know Arroyo can hit, as he proved in taking the AZL MVP last summer. But the jump to full-season ball, and the pitcher-friendly SAL can be a tough one, especially for an 18 year-old kid. Arroyo entered last night with only 2 hits on the young season, so hopefully his 3-hit performance will let him breathe a little easier and get into a groove at the plate. No doubt, Arroyo has a chance to really be a leader for one of the youngest Augusta teams fielded in years.

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(Photo Courtesy of Aroundthefoghorn.com)

Pitching Report

Mitch Lively, FRS: 5 IP, 5 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 4 K (8.31 season ERA) – Lively earned his 1st win of the season in an offensive slugfest.

Ty Blach, RCH: 6 IP, 5 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 0 K (2.45 ERA) – Blach’s 1st AA win. I think guys like Blach and Blackburn are going to see their K’s take a hit in Richmond this season, as the hitting is much more advanced. However, I’ll take 6 shutout IP any day of the week.

Kendry Flores, SJ: 5 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 1 BB, 3 K (4.50 ERA) – Flores couldn’t replicate his dominant first outing of the season. Sounds like he was pulled in the 6th with two runners on, and both of those runs came in to score.

Chase Johnson, AUG: 5.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K (3.38 ERA) – Johnson gets his first win as a Greenjacket. Through 2 starts, he’s got 9 K and only 2 BB in 10.2 IP. Not too shabby for a seldom-used college reliever.

Stock Up

Gary Brown, FRS: 3-5, 2B, 3B, RBI – Brown is really spraying the ball around early in the year. He’s had a hit in all but one game, and has 3 multiple-hit performances. His average is up to .324 after yesterday.

Adam Duvall, FRS: 2-5, 2 R, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 2 K – Duvall’s second HR of the year was a grand slam. The guy has some major power, and it’s showing up early in the PCL.

Matt Duffy, RCH: 1-5, 2 RBI – Duffy had another nice day at the plate, working a 12-pitch AB his first time up, eventually moving Tyler Graham over to 3rd. His 2-RBI single in the 5th gave Richmond enough of a cushion to lock down a win.

Mac Williamson, SJ: 2-4, 2 R – Mac was off to an ice-cold start to the season, so his first multiple hit game has to feel good.

Mitch Delfino, SJ: 3-4, 2 R, 1 2B, 2 HR, 4 RBI – Huge night at the plate for Delfino, who now sports a .345 average and 3 big flies on the year. He’s only 23, and he’s a serious 20-HR threat in the Cal League this season.

Leo Rojas, AUG: 3-5, 2 R, 2B, 2 RBI – Nice game for Rojas, who the Giants have moved out from behind the dish. Rojas has always shown a pretty nice hack, but he missed quite a bit of 2013 after being popped for PED’s.

Stock Down

George Kontos, FRS: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 3 K – Another rough outing for Kontos, whose ERA over 6 IP is now 13.50.

Mason McVay, SJ: 2 IP, 2 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 3 K – McVay came in for some extended relief, and promptly gave up a grand slam. He also walked two batters, an early trend for Giants minor league relievers.

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