Home runs were the themes of Wednesday in the Dodgers minors.
Player of the day
Diego Cartaya, the 19-year-old catcher who already impressed in his season debut on Tuesday with an RBI single, a walk, and threw out a runner, had a coming out party on Wednesday.
He hit a two-run home run as part of a four-run first inning, then doubled in the third inning.
For good measure, Cartaya singled in the sixth, giving him a third hit to go with three runs scored.
Signed out of Venezuela in 2018, Cartaya was rated the 75th-best prospect in MLB by The Athletic, and is slated as the Dodgers’ sixth-best prospect by both Baseball America and MLB Pipeline.
First baseman Ryan Noda homered twice, and former first-round pick Jeren Kendall homered once in the Drillers’ blowout of the Arkansas Travelers (Mariners).
Shortstop Kenneth Betancourt, a 21-year-old Venezuelan signed in 2016, doubled twice and singled twice in his second career start above rookie ball.
Ryan Pepiot, the Dodgers’ third-round draft pick in 2019, struck out a career-high eight in 3⅓ scoreless innings, and in four starts this season has a 38-percent strikeout rate to go with a 1.17 ERA.
Tulsa also announced that ONEOK Field will be open to full capacity beginning with the Drillers’ next home game, on June 8. Tickets go on sale beginning at 8 a.m. PT on June 1.
High-A Great Lakes
Two early home runs provided all the offense the Loons needed in a road win over the Lansing Lugnuts (A’s). The first was a three-run shot by Leonel Valera — you might remember him from recent near-cycles — his team-leading sixth homer.
Right fielder Andy Pages hit a two-run home run in the third inning to extend his hitting streak to nine games.
This was really impressive. It's even more impressive that he's riding a 9-game hit streak & a 17-game on-base streak.— Brad Tunney (@brad_tunney) May 27, 2021
HS: 378/425/703 1.128 OPS
OBS: 279/380/485 .865 OPS
Figured it'd take him some time to adjust because he skipped Low-A. So far... pretty darn good. #Dodgers https://t.co/eD0Xdv00D1
Low-A Rancho Cucamonga
The offense came alive in a home win over the Stockton Ports (A’s). In addition to Cartaya’s three hits, the Quakes had nine other hits, with a few standout performances.
Alex De Jesus, the designated hitter on Wednesday, walked four times and singled. Second baseman Sam McWilliams walked once and had two hits, including a two-run double on his 23rd birthday. First baseman Brandon Lewis reached base four times, with two singles and two walks.
Jacob Cantleberry, a left-hander drafted in the 13th round in 2019, struck out four of his five batters faced in picking up the save, and on the season has a 2.38 ERA and a 47.8-percent strikeout rate in 11⅓ innings.
High-A: 25-year-old Cameron Gibbens, a 6’8 right-hander from Australia with a 56-percent strikeout rate and an 0.87 ERA in seven relief appearances with Rancho Cucamonga, was promoted to Great Lakes.
Low-A: Michael Martinez, a 21-year-old right-hander from Puerto Rico, was added to the Quakes roster from extended spring training.
- 4:05 p.m. PT: Great Lakes (Jesus Vargas) at Lansing (Seth Shuman)
- 5:10 p.m.: Tulsa (Gerardo Carrillo) at Arkansas (Ian McKinney)
- 6:05 p.m.: Oklahoma City (Mike Kickham) at El Paso [Padres] (Jerry Keel)
- 6:30 p.m.: Rancho Cucamonga (Carlos Duran) vs. Stockton (Jack Cushing)