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D-backs Farm Rumblings: Socrates Brito helping Reno turn things around

It took a while, but the Arizona Diamondbacks’ top farm team — the Reno Aces of the Pacific Coast League — have started playing good baseball.

After a rough start to the 2018 campaign, the Aces went 6-1 last week, outscoring their opponents 41-27 in the process.

And the Aces made some history too, with the hiring of Emily Jaenson as the team’s general manager.

Here’s a snapshot of what the D-backs’ minor league affiliates did last week:

Team League Week/Overall Standing
Reno Aces Pacific Coast League (Triple-A) 6-1 / 13-18 4th place in Pacific Northern Division (6.0 games back)
Jackson Generals Southern League (Double-A) 4-4 / 19-10 1st place in North Division (2.5 games up on Chattanooga)
Visalia Rawhide California League (High-A) 3-4 / 18-13 Tied for 1st place with Stockton and San Jose in North Division (4.0 games up)
Kane County Cougars Midwest League (Single-A) 2-4 / 12-15 Tied for 6th place in Western Division (3.5 games back)

Blistering Brito – Outfielder Socrates Brito is in Reno for the third straight season, but the 25-year-old is making the most of his time there of late. In seven games last week, Brito hit .400 (10-for-25) with three doubles, three RBI and two stolen bases. For the year, Brito is hitting .322, which leads the Aces. He’s also tied with Cody Decker for the team lead in RBI (17).

Resurgent Clarke – After a rough stretch, right-hander Taylor Clarke had one of his better outings of 2018 Wednesday night against El Paso. The 24-year-old hurled 7.0 innings, allowing six hits and two earned runs while walking one and striking out five in a 4-3 win over the Chihuahuas. The win snapped a personal four-game losing streak for Clarke, who remains in the mix for big-league duty as the Diamondbacks search for an effective replacement for Robbie Ray, who is on the disabled list.

Unsung Medrano – Jackson infielder Kevin Medrano continues to be one of the most under-appreciated players in the D-backs chain. The 27-year-old had three multi-hit games last week and batted .318 (7-for-22) while driving in five runs. His 21 RBI are the most in the Arizona minor-league system and he’s put up a .355/.381/.542 slash line with an OPS of .923.

Rare loss for Duplantier – Jackson right-hander Jon Duplantier wasn’t his dominant self in his most recent start Sunday. The 23-year-old lasted just 4.1 innings, allowing six hits and three earned runs in a 6-4 loss to Montgomery. It was only the fourth pro loss for Duplantier in 29 minor-league appearances.

Three-headed monster – Emilio Vargas, Miguel Aguilar and Josh Taylor combined on a six-hit shutout of the San Jose Giants Thursday night. Vargas, the 21-year-old Dominican right-hander, went six innings, allowing just four hits and striking out seven while lowering his season ERA to a minuscule 1.23. Aguilar, a 26-year-old from Mexico, breezed through two innings of relief and Taylor worked the ninth to preserve the win. It was the Rawhide’s second shutout win of the season.

Unhittable – Right-hander Matt Peacock, a 23rd-round draft pick out of South Alabama in 2017, has been murder on Midwest League hitters this season. Peacock has 10 appearances out of the Cougars bullpen, and has allowed only six hits in 16 innings, while striking out 14. Opposing hitters are batting just .115 against him and he’s got a microscopic WHIP of 0.50. Peacock has a string of eight straight scoreless relief appearances.

Quick Hits

• Reno right-hander Bradin Hagens got his first win on American soil in three years Sunday. Hagens went five innings and allowed just one earned run in a 5-1 win over Tacoma. Originally a sixth-round pick of the D-backs in 2009, Hagins played the 2016 and 2017 seasons in Japan as a member of the Hiroshima Toyo Carp. In 61 games over the two years, Hagens posted a 7-5 record and a 3.49 ERA.

• Reno reliever Jimmie Sherfy has been outstanding lately in the back end of the Aces’ bullpen. Sherfy has converted saves in his last five appearances and is 6-for-6 in save opportunities while posting a 2.45 ERA this year. Opponents are hitting just .154 against the former 10th-round pick out of Oregon.

• Former D-backs farmhand Colin Poche got a win against his former organization Sunday. Poche, who was dealt to Tampa Bay to complete the Steven Souza Jr. trade, threw 2.1 innings of perfect relief with six strikeouts for Montgomery in a 6-4 win over Jackson Sunday.

• Jackson won 5-4 in walk-off fashion over Montgomery Saturday night on Star Wars Night. Check out Jackson’s uniforms for the game:

• Jackson first baseman Rudy Flores had two homers last week, and now has 101 in his minor league career.

• Visalia catcher Dominic Miroglio, a 20th-round pick out of San Francisco last summer, put together a very good week for the Rawhide. Miroglio batted .476 (10-for-21) with a home run and six RBI while posting a 1.190 OPS.

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