Reno Aces (Triple-A Pacific Coast League)
Week: 3-3/Overall: 10-13, 3rd place in Pacific Northern Division
O’Brien goes off: What a week for Aces outfielder Peter O’Brien. The slugger batted .500 (12-for-24) with four home runs and 10 RBI. He finished the week off with a bang, belting a solo, walk-off shot in the 12th inning off of Albuquerque’s Ryan Arrowood in a 1-0 win Sunday. The blast was the 100th of O’Brien’s minor league career.
The 25-year-old is tied for the PCL lead in home runs with eight, and is tied for third with 22 RBI through his first 21 games this season.
In fact, O’Brien was named to MLBpipeline.com’s Team of the Week for his performance.
Shipley twirls another gem: O’Brien’s extra-inning heroics were enabled by another great outing by right-hander Braden Shipley, who allowed just four hits and two walks over six scoreless innings of work. In his last two starts, Shipley has not allowed an earned run, while striking out 13 and walking just three.
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) May 1, 2016
O’Brien and Shipley were also named the PCL Player and Pitcher of the Week, respectively. Web gems: A couple great catches in the outfield this week by Evan Marzilli and Socrates Brito.
— Reno Aces (@Aces) April 29, 2016
Mobile BayBears (Double-A Southern League)
Week: 1-5/Overall: 8-15, 5th place in Southern League South Division Pitching struggling: The BayBears were outscored 36-17 over the course of the week and their pitching staff posted a collective ERA of 6.89. Continuing to struggle is right-hander Johnny Omahen, a 35th-round draft pick of the Miami Marlins. Sunday, Omahen was touched up for eight hits and six earned runs in 4.1 innings in a 6-4 loss to Jackson. In two starts last week, Omahen allowed 18 hits and 14 earned runs while walking eight and striking out just two. For the season, he’s 0-4 with a 12.05 ERA, a complete reversal of his 2015 success. Last season, the 27-year-old went 13-3 with a 3.07 ERA in 27 appearances in Visalia and Mobile. Still producing: Outfielder Gabriel Guerrero had five more RBI last week, bringing his season total to 18, which is tied for second-most in the Southern League.
Visalia Rawhide (High-A California League)
Week: 6-0/Overall: 17-6, 1st place in California League North Division A whole lot of winning: The ‘Hide reeled off six straight wins to widen their division lead to six games over Bakersfield, Stockton and San Jose. Visalia brings a seven-game overall winning streak into this week’s action.
Flores on fire: First baseman Rudy Flores, a 21st-round pick out of Florida International in 2012, is on quite a power streak. Flores homered five times in six games and drove in 11 during the Rawhide’s undefeated week. He has homered in four straight contests. The 25-year-old has 22 RBI on the season, good for second in the California League. Two seasons ago, in Visalia, Flores belted 28 home runs and drove in 100. He spent last season at Double-A Mobile — a place he could return to soon if his prodigous power run continues.
Visalia to Phoenix: Lefty reliever Zac Curtis, who struck out 22 batters in just 10.1 innings of work in Visalia, got the big-league call-up from the Arizona Diamondbacks over the weekend. He made his Major-League debut Saturday night and induced a double-play to get the D-backs out of a jam in the ninth inning of a 5-2 loss to the Rockies. Curtis was a sixth-round pick out of Middle Tennessee State in 2014 and made it to “the show” after just 68 minor-league relief outings over three seasons.
— Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) April 30, 2016
Sherfy sizzles: Even with Curtis being elevated, the Rawhide’s bullpen is still top-notch, thanks in part to right-hander Jimmie Sherfy. The former 10th-round pick out of Oregon has been unhittable this season. Last week, Sherfy notched three saves, striking out six of the nine batters he’s faced. The 24-year-old has allowed only three hits in 10.1 innings, has struck out 16 and opposing hitters are batting a paltry .097 against him.
Kane County Cougars (Class-A Midwest League)
Week: 3-3/Overall: 13-10, tied for 2nd place in Midwest League Western Division
That’s a lot of zeroes: All three of the Cougars’ wins last week were of the shutout variety. Wednesday, Justin Donatella combined with three relievers in a 4-hit, 9-0 shutout of the Dayton Dragons. The next day, Junior Garcia, Gabriel Moya and Cameron Gann combined on a 1-hitter in a 2-0 win. Garcia allowed only a leadoff single to Mitch Trees in the third inning. And on Saturday, it was Bowling Green’s turn to get blanked as Cody Reed, Jency Solis, Jared Miller and Bo Takahashi did the honors, combining for 16 strikeouts.
He should spell Cody with a ‘K’: Left-hander Cody Reed is mowing down hitters in 2016. In Saturday’s start, the 19-year-old struck out 11 in just 5.2 innings of work. In his first start, he fanned 11 in 5.1 innings. That’s 18.0 strikeouts per nine innings.