Brendan McKay was good Thursday night. Jorge Guzman was better.
Miami's No. 9 prospect struck out a season-high 10, surrendering just two walks and two hits over six scoreless innings in Double-A Jacksonville's 1-0 loss to Montgomery at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville. He outpitched the third-ranked Tampa Bay prospect, who scattered five hits and fanned six in six frames.
Video: Jacksonville's Guzman's final K
"[Guzman] overpowered them really," Jumbo Shrimp manager Kevin Randel said in the team's postgame interview. "He had his good fastball working. The breaking stuff and changeup were out early, kind of got them off, and then just went straight fastballs with them right by them. A lot of swings-and-misses ... just cruised for six innings."
The right-hander was spotless out of the gate, not surrendering a hit until the fourth when Rays No. 28 prospect Tristan Gray singled with two outs. But Guzman quickly squelched the threat by striking out three anchors of the Biscuits lineup swinging: Dalton Kelly, fourth-ranked Jesus Sanchez, and No. 10 Lucius Fox.
Video: Montgomery's McKay gets sixth strikeout
McKay, meanwhile, allowed a hit in every inning except his last one. He got Brian Miller to ground out to the mound for the first out of the sixth, then rang up Stone Garrett and Joe Dunand to cap his outing.
MLB.com's No. 29 overall prospect sports a 2-0 record and a 1.51 ERA in seven starts for Montgomery. After allowing three runs over 4 2/3 innings in his first start, he's lowered that mark with every outing.
Gameday box score
Guzman stands 1-4 with a 3.27 ERA, whiffing 44 over the same number of innings. The 23-year-old has racked up double digits in strikeouts four times in his career, most recently on Aug. 23 for Class A Advanced Jupiter against Florida.
He finished 2018 with a 4.03 ERA, striking out 101 batters across 96 innings for the Hammerheads in his first full professional campaign. With Class A Short Season Staten Island the year before, Guzman went 5-3 with a 2.30 ERA across 13 starts, striking out 88 over 66 2/3 innings.