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Yoshi Tsutsugo released by Dodgers

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The Dodgers acquired Yoshi Tsutsugo back in May, but he never settled in and found a spot with the team

MLB: San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

In an interesting move, the Oklahoma City Dodgers released Yoshi Tsutsugo on Saturday. Tsutsugo, currently not on the Dodgers’ 40-man roster, has spent the last month and a half in Triple-A with Oklahoma City.

He was traded to the Dodgers on May 15 and then spent three weeks with the club before being placed on the IL on June 9. Once he was activated, he was removed from the 40-man and sent to OKC.

After struggling through his first few weeks there, Tsutsugo really was turning things around. Since July 1, he was hitting .317 with an OPS of 1.000. He had seven homers and had driven in 27 runs.

It will be interesting to see what’s next for Yoshi. I wish we could have seen him have one more shot with the big-league club to see if he was truly turning a corner.

Player of the day

Miguel Vargas had himself a two-homer day for the Noodlers (Drillers). For Vargas, he continues to impress at each level he’s at. Whether it’s in Rancho, Great Lakes or Tulsa, he continues to hit.

The 21-year-old is arguably the best all-around hitter in the Dodgers’ farm system and he continues to rise up prospect rankings.

Triple-A Oklahoma City

The Dodgers’ offense came alive in the ninth inning, but by then it was too late. OKC fell to the Round Rock Express (Rangers) 7-3. OKC got their three runs in the ninth off the bat of a three-run homer from Zack Reks... unfortunately, it was already 7-0 at that point.

Ryan Pepiot made another start in AAA and struggled yet again. In 4 13 innings of action he allowed four runs on six hits, also issuing three walks. Pepiot did have seven strikeouts, but he had yet another rough start in OKC. In his three starts in Triple-A, Pepiot has posted a 7.43 ERA and 1.73 WHIP. In 13 13 innings of action, he’s allowed 11 runs to score on 16 hits and has seven walks. Granted, it’s a level higher, but he’s taken a complete 180 since Double-A.

Double-A Tulsa

The Drillers relied on the home run ball in their win, hitting three homers in their 5-2 win over the Wichita Wind Surge (Twins).

Miguel Vargas was responsible for two of the homers, as he now has 12 with the Drillers on the season. The 21-year-old is having quite the year between Great Lakes and Tulsa. In 89 games, he’s hitting .306 with an OPS of .902. He also has 19 home runs and 58 RBI. He’s always been a great hitter, but the power has really shown up this season. Prior to 2021, Vargas had only nine home runs in nearly 200 combined games.

Michael Busch added the other homer for the Drillers, as he hit his 14th of the season.

Jose Martinez had his best outing since moving up to Tulsa. In five innings he allowed only one run on three hits and had four strikeouts. Andrew Schwaab followed in relief, throwing two scoreless innings with four strikeouts.

High-A Great Lakes

The bats were red hot in Wisconsin, as the Loons defeated the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (Brewers) 13-2.

Great Lakes scored nine of their runs in the first three innings. Andy Pages singled in a run in the first inning and then Jonny Deluca made it 3-0 with a double. An inning later, Eddys Leonard singled in two runs to give GL a 5-0 lead. Ryan Ward brought in two with a single in the third and Carson Taylor brought in two as well with a single, putting the Loons on top 9-0 in only the third inning.

The homers came later in the game, as Zac Ching (10) Deacon Linput (10) and Ryan Ward (18) all hit solo shots.

Hyun-il Choi allowed only one run in his 4 23 innings of action. He struck out five and issued one walk. On the season, he’s 8-3 with an ERA of 3.08 between GL and Rancho. The 21-year-old owns a 0.87 WHIP and has 91 strikeouts in 79 innings of action.

Low-A Rancho Cucamonga

The Quakes and 66ers played a doubleheader, with RC picking up victories in both games.

A huge first inning from the Quakes helped them take the first game, 7-4. RC scored five runs in the first inning and didn’t look back the rest of the way. Jorbit Vivas tripled in two runs and then singles from Alex De Jesus and Imanol Vargas brought in three total runs.

The Quakes took the second game as well, taking down IE 6-3. Ismael Alcantara got things started right away in the first with an inside the park home run, putting the Quakes on top 1-0. Jorbit Vivas hit his 13th homer in the third and then drove in a run with a sac fly in the fifth, putting RC up 3-1. Aldrich De Jongh hit a two-run homer in the sixth to give the Quakes a 5-1 lead.

Transactions

  • Dodgers recalled RF Zach McKinstry from Oklahoma City
  • Oklahoma City Dodgers released LF Yoshi Tsutsugo
  • Dodgers sent C Anthony Bemboom outright to Oklahoma City
  • Dodgers sent RHP Kevin Quackenbush outright to Oklahoma City.
  • Tulsa Drillers sent CF Jeren Kendall on a rehab assignment to ACL Dodgers

Saturday scores

Sunday schedule

11:05 a.m. PT: Wichita (Jordan Balazovic) at Tulsa (Bryan Brickhouse)

11:05 a.m. PT: Great Lakes (TBA) at Wisconsin (TBA)

4:05 p.m. PT: Round Rock (Brock Burke) at Oklahoma City (Aaron Wilkerson)

5:35 p.m. PT: Rancho Cucamonga (TBA) at Inland Empire (TBA)