A strikeout streak, big home runs, a few standout pitching performances, and two promotions from Low-A to High-A highlighted Tuesday in the Dodgers minor leagues.
Player of the day
Alex Vesia took his lumps in his time with the majors this year with the Dodgers, one of the many inexperienced relievers thrown into the fire as the team’s depth was tested by various injuries. An astronomical walk rate (22.9 percent, 11 walks in 10... innings) and some home runs hurt, giving him a 5.91 ERA and 7.18 FIP, but it’s easy to see why the Dodgers were enamored with his stuff, including a 93-mph fastball that plays well in the zone and striking out a third of his major league hitters faced helped.
Since getting optioned to Triple-A, Vesia has allowed only one run in seven innings, and six of his seven appearances were hitless. Vesia walked three of his first 14 batters faced with Oklahoma City, mimicking his major league walk rate, but since then has settled down and then some. He erased that walk with a double play on June 17, then struck out his next batter.
In Vesia’s last three outings he struck out all three hitters he faced, including on Tuesday night to save Oklahoma City’s win. That’s 10 straight strikeouts for the 25-year-old left-hander.
Triple-A Oklahoma City
Matt Davidson hit a three-run home run in the eighth inning, giving Oklahoma City a comeback win over the Sugar Land Skeeters (Astros).
Yoshi Tsutsuo homered in the first inning to snap an 0-for-19 skid, and was 2-for-4 on the night.
Through 11 games of his long-term minor league rehab assignment while on the injured list with an injured calf, Tsutsugo is 5-for-42 (.119) with three homers, six walks, and 14 strikeouts.
Carlos Rincon hit a grand slam and Miguel Vargas homered for the fourth time in nine games, leading Tulsa over the Arkansas Travelers (Mariners).
Ryan Pepiot was a bulk pitcher on Tuesday, following opener Nick Robertson’s two scoreless innings. Pepiot allowed three runs in four innings, putting his ERA above two (2.08) for the first time in four weeks.
High-A Great Lakes
Though they grabbed the lead in the top of the 11th inning, Great Lakes allowed two runs in the bottom of the frame, losing to the Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres) on a walk-off walk.
Clayton Beeter retired all six batters he faced, striking out three while matching his longest outing of the season. The Loons got home runs from Ryan Ward, Deacon Liput, and Joe Vranesh, and first baseman Justin Yurchak was 4-for-5 in defeat.
Low-A Rancho Cucamonga
Designated hitter Alex DeJesus hit a three-run home run in the first inning, giving the Quakes more than enough office to beat the Fresno Grizzlies (Rockies). This was the first-ever matchup between Rancho Cucamonga and Fresno, which was a Triple-A team for 23 years before falling under the steamroller that was MLB’s reorganization of the minor leagues.
Right-hander Hyun-il Choi struck out six in 5⅓ innings of relief for the win, allowing only one run on four hits. The 21-year-old from South Korea has 49 strikeouts against only five walks this season, with a 3.32 in 40⅔ innings.
High-A: Third baseman Brandon Lewis and left-hander Franklin De La Paz were promoted from Low-A. The Loons transferred two-way player Andrew Shaps and catcher Chase Barbary to the developmental list.
Low-A: Outfielder Jake Vogel was activated off the injured list after missing a month with an ankle injury. Reliever Michael Martinez was placed on the injured list, and pitchers Elio Serrano and Joan Valdez joined the Quakes from extended spring training.
- Oklahoma City 6, Sugar Land 4
- Tulsa 10, Arkansas 4
- Fort Wayne 6, Great Lakes 5 (11 innings)
- Rancho Cucamonga 5, Fresno 1
- 4:05 p.m. PT: Great Lakes (Logan Boyer) at Fort Wayne (Moises Lugo)
- 5:05 p.m.: Tulsa (Bryan Brickhouse) vs. Arkansas (Adam Hill)
- 6:50 p.m.: Rancho Cucamonga (Kendall Williams) at Fresno (Keegan James)