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MiLB Odds and Ends – Part 2

MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL ANNOUNCES JUNE PLAYERS AND PITCHERS OF THE MONTH
Midwest League (High-A) Pitcher of the Month
Great Lakes Loons (Dodgers) right-hander Kyle Hurt went 1-1 with a 0.47 ERA in five starts as he allowed one earned run over 19.0 innings. Hurt allowed five hits and struck out 30 and held opponents to a .082 average. He left three of his five starts (two after 5.0 innings and another after 4.0 innings) with a no-hitter intact. Hurt was promoted to Double-A Tulsa on July 5. Hurt, 24, was originally selected by Miami in the fifth round of the 2020 MLB Draft out of the University of Southern California.
Kyle Hurt debuted with the Tulsa Drillers on July 6th and did not have the AA debut that he would have liked. He gave up six earned runs in three innings and walked five batters in doing so.
Let’s go with the AA jitters and see what happens next time out.
Dominican Summer League (Rookie) Player of the Month

Jorge Puerta

Dodgers catcher Jorge Puerta batted .431/.547/.824 and led the league in average (.431), RBI (21), on-base percentage (547) and OPS (1.371). He finished second in doubles (eight) and slugging percentage (.824) and fifth in total bases (42) despite playing in 15 games. He was promoted to the Arizona Complex League Dodgers on July 1. Puerta, 20, was signed by Los Angeles as an International Free Agent out of Tolu, Colombia, on July 18, 2019.
Jorge Puerta debuted with the  ACL Dodgers on July 2nd. He walked in one plate appearance and over three games has two hits in six at bats along with three walks.
It appears he is transitioning from behind the plate to first base as he has played more games as a first baseman in 2022 than he has as a catcher.
Samuel Muñoz – DSL Dodgers Mega

Samuel Muñoz

A case can be made that 17-year-old Samuel Muñoz  is the top hitter with the DSL Dodgers since Jorge Puerta has been promoted. That is, the top hitter with both the  DSL Dodgers Mega and DSL Dodgers Bautista. However, 17-year-old Josue De Paula of the DSL Dodgers Bautista might provide a bit of an argument as to whom is performing better.
Muñoz was signed by the Dodgers on  January 15, 2022 as a  free agent from Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic.
Although MiLB has listed him as first baseman, he has played the outfield – both left field and right field – and has been used in the DH role. During his first 19 professional games he has a triple slash of .358/.458/.507 with an OPS of .965. He has only one home run but has 22 runs batted in which is the most for either DSL team.
The 6’3”/190 lb. left-handed hitter was the #7 prospect in the class according to MLB Pipeline, and #42 according to Baseball America.
MLB Pipeline
Muñoz is a left-handed-hitting infielder with an advanced approach at the plate and tons of power projection. He already shows an above-average ability to barrel up the baseball to all fields, and the thought is the ability will translate into homers in the future as he fills out his large and developing frame. He sprays the ball to all fields with pop. Muñoz has already come a long way. The teen was first showcased as an outfielder but moved back to his original spot in the infield because of his improved athleticism and quickness. He runs the 60-yard timed run in 6.6 seconds and has the potential to be a good base runner. His high baseball IQ and makeup are also noteworthy. He shows good actions in the infield and displays solid arm strength. There’s still a chance he moves to third base because of his size, but it’s too early to tell. Muñoz has a left-handed swing that’s short, quick and smooth. He handles the bat well with a good approach for his age and generates good power that could grow into an above-average tool once he fills out his projectable frame.”
Ben Sadler wrote: “Muñoz showcased for teams as an outfielder and eventually developed into an above-average runner, but most recently he has been playing third base and is expected to start his career as an infielder,”
Jesse Sanchez wrote: “[Muñoz] already shows an above-average ability to barrel up the baseball to all fields and the thought is that ability will translate into homers as he fills out his large and developing frame.”
Meet Callum Wallace from Down Under
Right-hander Callum Wallace signed with the Dodgers as a minor league free agent on January 15, 2022.
He was born in Brisbane, Australia and  played  for the Windsor Royals, Queensland, Australia in 2021 where he has posted a 3-1 record and a 2.82 ERA across eight appearances.
With congratulations via Twitter by his teammates and coaches Wallace was anxious to get his professional career started in North America and seemed pleased he was pursued by the Dodgers.
The deciding factor perhaps was his relationship with John Deeble who is known as “Mr. Baseball” in Australia and is an International Scout in the Dodgers system in Australia. Deeble last year signed Cameron Gibbens for the Dodgers.
“Choosing the Dodgers was an easy decision,” Wallace said.
“They have had success with other Australian pitching prospects and my family and I have a lot of respect and trust with Jon Deeble.
“I really value his experience and knowledge and it’s something I’ll need moving forward.”
Wallace is a talented multi-sport athlete having competed in athletics at St Joseph’s Nudgee College where he won a silver medal in Javelin at the Australian All Schools Championships in 2019.
The 6’3”/190 lb. He debuted with the ACL Dodgers on June 24th pitching one inning with all zeros. He now has made three appearances over 3.1 innings with no hits or runs along with two walks and six strikeouts.
Another Catcher

Nelson Quiroz

The Dodgers have a bevy of catchers at the minor league level. They all will not make it to MLB and some will convert to others positions, especially first base and perhaps the outfield.
Nelson Quiroz  was signed as a free free agent by the Dodgers on April 1, 2019. He is a native of Navajoa, Mexico. The 5’8”/194 lb. switch hitter  has played only behind the plate since he was signed with some time as a designated hitter.
In his fourth season he is still just 20 years of age.
In 2019 he played 37 games with the DSL Dodgers (Shoemaker) and posted a triple slash of .264/.349/.320 and an OPS of .667 as a 17-year-old.
The 2020 season was lost to MiLB and Quiroz attempted to play with the  Mayos de Navojoa of the Mexican League. That too got shut down and he had only three plate appearances before the shut down.
Quiroz made his way stateside for the 2021 season and played 30 games with the AZL Dodgers. He slashed .272/.387/.391 with an OPS of .779.
He is currently on the IL and has not played since  June 29th.  He debuted with the Quakes on June 1st and had a single in his first Low-A appearance.
On the season he has played but 12 games with one game elevating his slash line to .341/.420/.659 with an OPS of 1.079.
On June 12th against the Stockton Ports he had four hit, one double and three home runs. He drove in six runs and scored four.
In his previous 71 career minor league games — 2019 in the Dominican Summer League, 2021 in the Arizona Complex League, and this year with Rancho Cucamonga — the switch-hitting catcher had one home run, although he also had 13 doubles and excellent plate discipline. In his minor league career he has walked 37 times and struck out 38 times.
What does the future hold for Nelson Quiroz? That question cannot be answered. He is a bit on the small side to be a catcher but you never know with a determined switch hitter who has an intangible quality. That is, plate discipline.
07-22-2022 MiLB Summary

Las Vegas Aviators (A’s) 10 vs OKC Dodgers 3

Garrett Cleavinger and Robbie Erlin gave up 8 runs in 3.2 IP. Mark Washington, Dellin Betances, and Justin Hagenman went the next 4.1 allowing no runs and only two baserunners.  Yadier Álvarez allowed 2 unearned runs in the ninth for the final two runs.

Miguel Vargas 2-4 with a double (19)

Ryan Noda 2-4

Box Score

 

Tulsa Drillers 3 vs Northwest Arkansas (KC) 2

John Rooney started and completed 5.0 shutout innings on 2 hits.  2 relievers allowed 2 runs,.  Gus Varland got out of the 9th allowing only one run, and stranding the tying runner on base to end the game.

Ryan Ward 3-5

Devin Mann 2-4

Chris Betts HR (2) and Jeren Kendall HR (6)

 

Box Score

 

 

Great Lakes Loons 0 vs Lansing Lugnuts (A’s) 1

In a pitcher’s duel, Carlos Duran hit a batter and gave up a run-scoring double for the only run of the game.  That was the first run Duran has surrendered this year.  Emmet Sheehan followed with 4.0 shutout innings, and Ben Harris had a scoreless 9th.

The offense only generated a pair of singles by Eddys Leonard and José Ramos.

 

Box Score

 

 

Rancho Cucamonga Quakes 2 vs Inland Empire 66ers 9

Jerming Rosario looks overmatched.  Rosario and Osvanni Gutierrez yielded 9 runs over the first 3.2 IP.  Heisell Baro and Christian Suarez pitched the final 4.1 innings allowing a pair of hits and a walk.  They registered a combined 9 K’s.

The offense consisted of 3 singles: Jake Vogel, Gaige Howard, Luis Yanel Diaz.

 

Box Score

 

 

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Jeff Dominique

That was a great win for the good guys. The Dodgers pull it out again without Max Muncy and Cody Bellinger. I know a lot of fans get excited with one good game a week for these two and say they are back. How many times do we have to hear…See, I told you so!!  I am still hoping they find a way to get hot. They are winning with them both in the lineup. But how much longer? 

Trayce Thompson and Jake Lamb are both hitting better than Muncy, and both can play LF with Gavin Lux going back to 2B where he belongs. If Muncy plays to his best and Trayce and Jake play to their best, there is no question that Muncy will play. But that is not happening right now.

Will Smith is becoming the new Andre Ethier. 5 walk offs now. He is such a good hitter. A pitch is inside, and he brings his hands in and gets to ball with a quick stroke to get the single. My guess is Muncy and Belli would try to yank it out when all they needed is a single. Right man right spot.

Tyler Anderson kept the Cubs close, and the bullpen was stellar in the 8th, 9th, and 10th. Evan Phillips was especially outstanding. I was glad to see Caleb Ferguson get back out there. No walks for any LAD pitcher. That is superb pitching. 

The last time the Dodgers scored 10 runs in a game was June 23 against the Reds. They are averaging 4.375 runs this month and are 7-1. That is some impressive starting pitching, and relief pitching except for the one loss.

Great clutch win. SF is now 12.5 games out and 3.0 games behind in the WC race. Do they spend to get Willson Contreras?

Bumsrap

Maybe Bellinger needs to be told the next time he stands straight up that he will be pulled for a pinch hitter before the pitch is made. And then told he is being sent down to Oklahoma where he will stay until he changes his stance and swing. It is past time to play hard ball with him. He probably has options.

It is past time to shop Muncy.

The Dodgers are doing well. Another maybe–not a good time to screw with the team.

I like Lux and Smith up WRISP.

Singing the Blue

So, what we’re saying here is that we’ve given Muncy long enough and it’s time to trade him because he’s so bad.

Sounds like exactly the kind of endorsement that would make 29 teams fight each other for the right to trade for him.

Bumsrap

The Trade Simulator still likes him.

Michael Norris

Great stuff as usual Harold. Nice win. I am and always have been a huge Bellinger fan. But his AB’s are getting harder to watch. That K with the bases jammed last night was brutal. He is now swinging and missing those low outside pitches he couldn’t hit with a telephone pole. Muncy is also unwatchable at the plate. The whole team strikes out too damn much. Max did make a great catch in the 8th. But they would be scoring 7 runs a game if he and Belli would at least hit the ball.

Badger

I know the stats say the Dodgers don’t chase. Bellinger does. And he’s late. How many times have we seen Muncy look at straight pitches over the plate then swing and miss bent pitches leaving the strike zone? I still have hope that both these guys will get their mojo back. I still want to believe it’s the injuries they sustained that is slowing them down. How long can the team wait?

I would suggest they hit the weight room hard this coming off season. Low weight high reps. Overload on last rep. It’s difficult to get intense workouts in during the season for obvious reasons. But maintenance lifting can certainly be accomplished. Do it. I know the philosophy of the Dodgers is exit velocity and launch angle. I get it. For the most part it’s worked. But, the old coach in me just has to point out their two strike approach sucks. The “three true outcome” philosophy is, in my opinion, nuts. Put a bat on the ball. Make it your goal to barrel it. Choke up. Go the other way. And don’t trust these umpires. The strike zone expands with two strikes. Protect.

Last edited 4 months ago by Badger
Jeff Dominique

Neither Muncy or Belli would have tucked their hands in to get to the inside pitch and punch it into the OF. Muncy and Belli have long hard swings trying to produce HR’s not run scoring singles.

But like you, I remain hopeful. The season is past half over. The Dodgers are still the class of the NL even with both of those guys in the lineup. So while they make for stressful games, they are still winning. Who is to say that Andrew Benintendi, Ian Happ, or any other prospective trade candidate would make the Dodgers better. If the pitching wasn’t so good, there would be more of an urgency.

Badger

More of Bowden said:

Outfielder Chris Taylor just went on the IL with a fractured foot, and although the Dodgers have sufficient fill-ins with Gavin LuxTrayce ThompsonJake Lamb and Zach McKinstry, let’s be real: They are the Dodgers. So, acquire Benintendi to play above-average defense in left field, and when Taylor comes back, he can always play second base with Max Muncy returning to DH. Benintendi, 28, has slashed a career-best .319/.388/.405 and will be a free agent after this season.

Maybe Taylor is out for a long time?

Last edited 4 months ago by Badger
Bluto

More likely Bowden is day-dreaming

Badger

Aren’t we all.

Jeff Dominique

I went back to read the story in The Athletic on what Jim Bowden recommended the Dodgers do: Andrew Benintendi and Scott Barlow for Andy Pages, Gavin Stone, and Jake Vogel. I already commented that I believed it was too much for a rental singles hitter and setup reliever (I know he closes, but for KC). But what I thought was absurd from Bowden is that he wrote with Benintendi in LF, when CT3 returns he could go to 2B with Muncy going to DH. What does that do for Gavin Lux who is having a fantastic breakout season? I do not think Bowden thought that one all the way through. Benintendi’s OPS is .790, while Lux’s is .783. So you want to trade two solid prospects and a lottery pick to take a .790 singles hitter in LF and bench a .783 hitter to make room for him. Pass.

Singing the Blue

My son told me about that Bowden deal yesterday and my response was exactly the same as yours. What about Lux?

Maybe Bowden was planning to trade Lux for Jake McGee, whom the Giants just dfa’d. He’d probably throw in Gonsolin just to even out the deal.

Last edited 4 months ago by Singing the Blue
Fred Vogel

Another reason why Bowden is an ex-GM.

OhioDodger

Tou che.

Badger

Why the disrespect for Jim Bowden? I admit he’s not without some controversy, but his record as GM was not that bad. He made some very interesting trades over the years (including landing Paul Konerko for a reliever) and was named MLB Executive of the Year in ‘99. He certainly knows more about inside baseball than I do, so, I’ll listen to what he has to say.

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