Drillers' May delivers best Double-A start

Dodgers No. 4 prospect scatters four hits in 6 2/3 shutout frames

Dustin May lowered his Texas League ERA to 2.82 in four games with Tulsa. (Ben Sandstrom/MiLB.com)

By Marisa Ingemi / MiLB.com | August 23, 2018 1:49 AM

In his fourth Double-A outing, Dustin May was locked in.

The No. 4 Dodgers prospect scattered four hits over 6 2/3 scoreless frames to lead the Double-A Drillers past the Travelers, 8-1, at Dickey-Stephens Park on Wednesday. He struck out six and walked two.

Gameday box score

"Throughout the game, my fastball wasn't as good as it has been, location-wise," May said. "So I was using off-speed pitches to play off of that and get back to it, which was making it easier to keep the hitters off balance. So I had more of a mix tonight than normal. My defense behind me was also playing fantastic tonight, they didn't make a mistake behind me. So you can't ever complain about that."

The No. 78 prospect in baseball gave up a base hit to No. 26 Mariners prospect Chuck Taylor and walked Yonathan Mendoza to start the game. But he punched out Seattle's No. 17 prospect Eric Filia and induced a double play off the bat of Joey Curletta to get out of the jam.

May (1-1) struck out four of the next seven batters, retiring the side in order in the second and third. The right-hander loaded the bases in the fourth with one out. He walked Filia, hit Curletta with a pitch and gave up a single to Dario Pizzano before fanning top Mariners prospect Kyle Lewis and Logan Taylor.

"Going into those situations, you don't want to have that happen," May said. "But getting out of those situations, it boosts your confidence a lot going into later innings knowing that when base runners do get on, you can get into it more and really finish the inning and not let the runners get to you."

In the fifth, the 20-year-old pitched around a double by Seattle's No. 21 prospect Donnie Walton in the fifth and a single by Filia in the sixth. He notched two outs in the seventh before exiting after his 92nd pitch, his second-highest total since joining the Drillers.

"I never was uncomfortable, I just had a couple of rough innings," May said. "But for the most part since being called up, I've been pretty comfortable. I'm just kind of getting my feet wet going out there, but it's been good. I feel like I'm throwing pretty well here."

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The 2016 third-round pick gave up seven runs over 15 2/3 frames in his first two starts in the Texas League. On Aug. 8, he allowed two runs on three hits while throwing 96 pitches over 7 1/3 innings against Corpus Christi.

"The biggest thing has just been keeping everything down," he said. "You can't get away with mistakes high like leaving fastballs up. A lot of the times that I've thrown up fastballs here, they've been hit and hit pretty hard, so the big adjustment is just keeping the ball down in the zone and keeping a better mix of pitches. When you get into a heavy fastball count, they just jump on it. It keeps them off balance."

Eighth-ranked Dodgers prospect DJ Peters belted his Texas League-leading 24th homer -- which broke the Drillers' single-season team record with 169 homers and 13 games to play -- and scored three times and Zach Reks added a double and three RBIs to pace the Drillers offense.

Marisa Ingemi is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @Marisa_Ingemi. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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