D-backs Farm Rumblings: Reno’s Taylor Clarke continues his roll

Jun 4, 2018, 6:46 AM | Updated: 6:47 am

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Taylor Clarke throws against the Colorado Rockies during the ...

Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Taylor Clarke throws against the Colorado Rockies during the first inning of a spring baseball game in Scottsdale, Ariz., Sunday, March 25, 2018. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

(AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

Here’s a quick look at what went down in the Arizona Diamondbacks’ minor league system this week.

Team League Week/Overall Standing
Reno Aces Pacific Coast League (Triple-A) 4-3 / 25-33 4th place in Pacific Northern Division (9.5 games back)
Jackson Generals Southern League (Double-A) 2-4 / 30-25 2nd place in North Division (2.5 games behind Chattanooga)
Visalia Rawhide California League (High-A) 2-5 / 29-28 3rd place in North Division (6.0 games behind Stockton)
Kane County Cougars Midwest League (Single-A) 4-5 / 29-26 4th place in Western Division (2.0 games behind Peoria)

Another gem from Clarke – Reno right-hander Taylor Clarke is, quite simply, in a zone. Clarke pitched five scoreless innings while allowing just three hits and two walks in a 6-1 win over Salt Lake Monday. The 25-year-old has earned wins in four straight starts and is now 6-5 on the season. Over those last four outings, Clarke has a 1.59 ERA with 29 strikeouts and six walks in 22.2 innings of work.

Have yourself a week, Kevin Cron! – Reno third baseman Kevin Cron tore the cover off the ball all week for the Aces. The 2014 14th-round pick out of TCU batted .357 (10-for-28) with four homers and 14 RBI. Cron had more RBIs than anyone in Triple-A for the week.

Team-wide explosion – Reno belted 21 hits in a 20-3 pasting of Las Vegas Thursday night. Cron led the way with two doubles, a HR and drove in six. Anthony Recker had three hits and drove in four and Cesar Puello scored five runs in the game.

Takahashi gets a promotion – Bo Takahashi, a 21-year-old right-hander, made his Double-A debut for the Generals Wednesday and allowed four hits and four earned runs over 5.2 innings in a 5-4 loss to Montgomery. Takahashi struck out nine and walked two.

Smith finding his power stroke – The Diamondbacks’ top overall prospect, first baseman Pavin Smith, took a while to get his first professional home run, but those days are long gone. Smith, last summer’s first-round pick out of Virginia, clubbed three home runs last week and now has six on the season. One of the home runs came against San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner, who was making a rehab start for San Jose Thursday night.

Big day for Duzenack – Rawhide infielder Camden Duzenack, a ninth-round pick out of Dallas Baptist last summer, went 3-for-5 with two runs scored, a home run and five RBI in an 11-0 win over Stockton Sunday. While Duzenack was supplying more than enough offense, the trio of Emilio Vargas, Wei-Chieh Huang and Tommy Eveld blanked the Ports on a seven-hit shutout during which they combined for 12 strikeouts. Vargas, a 21-year-old Dominican right-hander, is now 4-1 with a microscopic 1.24 ERA this season. Vargas leads the California League in ERA by a comfortable margin — Modesto’s Darren McCaughan is second in the league with a 2.04 mark.

Positive signs for Shelby – Shelby Miller made his first organized baseball start since April 23, 2017 Wednesday night as he recovers from Tommy John surgery. Miller went 5.0 innings for Visalia, giving up four hits and one earned run while striking out eight and walking nobody. He didn’t get a decision in a 2-1, 11-inning loss to San Jose. Miller threw 65 pitches, 52 for strikes. The right-hander has another rehab start scheduled for Monday night for Double-A Jackson.

Quite the busy week – The Cougars, due to early-season rainouts that needed to made up, played nine games in a seven-day period — and that included a postponement on Saturday. Yup, that means three double-headers. Kane County split a pair against Beloit Tuesday, dropped both games against the Snappers Thursday and split a twin-bill against the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Sunday.

Duran, Duran – 20-year-old Dominican right-hander Jhoan Duran has been pitching very well for the Cougars. In his latest start Wednesday, Duran went five innings, allowing just four hits and one earned run while striking out six. In his last three outings, Duran has posted a 0.64 ERA with 15 strikeouts and four walks over 14 innings.

Quick Hits

• Reno right-hander Jake Buchanan had a no-hit bid spoiled in the seventh inning Saturday night when Las Vegas’ Todd Frazier singled. Buchanan would end up allowing three hits and two runs while being saddled with a loss in a 2-1 decision against the 51s.

• Jackson slugger Rudy Flores homered twice last week, giving him 10 for the season — which is tied for second-most in the Southern League behind only Birmingham catcher Seby Zavala.

• Reno’s Cesar Puello had a hot week at the plate, hitting .400 (8-for-20) with a double, triple, home run and five RBI. His teammate, Kristopher Negron followed suit, hitting .379 (11-for-29) with three doubles and a triple on the week.

• Kane County’s Eduardo Diaz took home an award.

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