Dodgers minor league catcher Dalton Rushing was injured in the first inning of Great Lakes’ game on Thursday, and was helped off the field.
The play was a dropped third strike of Dayton third baseman Austin Callahan, who Rushing retired by throwing to first base. Jay Allen, who walked and stole two bases in the inning, broke for home on the throw to first base. In fielding the return throw, Rushing was splayed awkwardly at home plate while trying to apply the tag, and immediately laid face down on the dirt in obvious pain after the play.
Per the Great Lakes broadcast, Rushing was helped off the field by team trainer Ikuo Kato and bench coach Elian Herrera.
Rushing, the Dodgers’ top draft pick in 2022 out of Louisville, represented the team at the MLB Futures Game in Seattle on July 8. He missed eight games in June with a concussion after getting hit in the helmet on a backswing.
Player of the day
Trayce Thompson continued his productive rehab assignment, with two doubles on Thursday in Reno. His second double gave Oklahoma City the lead.
Miguel Vargas follows Thompson with a RBI single and it's now 2-0! pic.twitter.com/BwlCJa6wfd— Oklahoma City Dodgers (@okc_dodgers) July 28, 2023
Thompson, who played seven innings in center field and was also hit by a pitch, has four doubles and a home run in two games since moving his rehab assignment from Arizona to Oklahoma City.
Triple-A Oklahoma City
Thompson’s strong night and Miguel Vargas driving him in provided Oklahoma City’s only runs on the night, and the pitchers made it hold up to beat the Reno Aces (D-backs).
Veteran left-hander Mike Montgomery had his best game since signing a minor league deal with the Dodgers, pitching five scoreless innings with four strikeouts, allowing only two hits and a walk.
Jimmy Nelson pitched for a second straight day for the second time this season (also July 7-8), but walked three of the five batters he faced and was pulled with two outs in the sixth inning.
Gus Varland pitched a scoreless ninth with a walk and a strikeout to record his second save, averaging 96.8 mph on his fastball and topping out at 98. In his last 18 appearances, Varland has a 1.40 ERA in 19⅓ innings, with 28 strikeouts (37.3-percent rate) and four walks.
The Drillers were held to just three hits in a shutout loss to the Springfield Cardinals.
Nick Nastrini ended up making his start after all, just one day later than originally planned. He allowed five runs (three earned) in four innings, including a home run and three doubles.
Braydon Fisher pitched two scoreless innings of relief, lowering his ERA to 3.18. The right-hander, drafted in the fourth round in 2018, has 48 strikeouts and a 27.9-percent strikeout rate in his 39⅔ innings in Double-A, but also 22 walks and a 12.8-percent walk rate.
Eddys Leonard had one of Tulsa’s three hits, extending his on-base streak to 26 games.
High-A Great Lakes
The Loons scored two first-inning runs but only one run after in a one-run loss to the Dayton Dragons (Reds).
Starter Maddux Bruns walked more (four) than he struck out (three) in his three innings, and allowed three runs to take the loss. Two of the runs came on a home run, just the third allowed by Bruns in 12 starts since getting promoted to High-A.
Luis Diaz had a two-run double in the first inning to snap a slump that saw no extra-base hits in his previous seven games.
Low-A Rancho Cucamonga
Quakes pitchers were pummeled in a blowout loss to the San Jose Giants. Starter Gabe Emmett allowed six runs while recording eight outs, and the bullpen allowed another six runs.
Josue De Paula continued to impress at the plate with three more hits, including a double, and scored Rancho Cucamonga’s only run. The outfielder is hitting .286/.389/.398, and his 14.1-percent strikeout rate is second-lowest among the 13 Quakes with at least 100 plate appearances this season, and just turned 18 two months ago.
More pro debuts
Two more 2023 Dodgers draftees made their professional debuts on Thursday in the Arizona Complex League.
Third baseman Jake Gelof, the team’s second-round pick out of Virginia, was hitless in three at-bats but walked twice and scored twice as the designated hitter against the Rangers at Camelback Ranch. Bryan González, the high school shortstop drafted in the sixth round, played second base and was 0-for-5 in his first game.
Triple-A: Infielder Yonny Hernández was optioned to Oklahoma City, which will open up a spot on the Dodgers roster for Amed Rosario on Friday.
Low-A: Three 2023 draftees joined the Quakes after playing two games in the Arizona Complex League — first baseman Joe Vetrano (fifth round), middle infielder Sam Mongelli (10th round), and shortstop Jordan Thompson (15th round). Pitcher Ben Serunkuma and infielder Luis Guerra were sent to Arizona. First baseman Dayton Dooney was released after hitting .191/.280/.266 with a 54 wRC+ in 81 games.
- Oklahoma City 2, Reno 1
- Springfield 7, Tulsa 0
- Dayton 4, Great Lakes 3
- San Jose 12, Rancho Cucamonga 1
- 4:05 p.m. PT: Great Lakes (Hyun-il Choi) vs. Dayton (Hunter Parks)
- 5:05 p.m.: Tulsa (River Ryan) vs. Springfield (Tink Hence)
- 6:30 p.m.: Rancho Cucamonga (Peter Heubeck) vs. San Jose (Mauricio Estrella)
- 6:35 p.m.: Oklahoma City (Matt Andriese) at Reno (TBD)