Theme of the dayPower in Triple-A: If it didn't get a full write-up here from MiLB.com's Nathan Brown, Tyler O'Neill's three-homer game for Triple-A Memphis may have featured in the "Unexpected" portion of this story. That's not because it was a surprise to see MLB.com's No. 50 overall prospect go
Theme of the dayPower in Triple-A:
If it didn't get a full write-up here
from MiLB.com's Nathan Brown, Tyler O'Neill
's three-homer game for Triple-A Memphis may have featured in the "Unexpected" portion of this story. That's not because it was a surprise to see MLB.com's No. 50 overall prospect
go deep three times; rather, it was a surprise he'd never gone deep three times in a game before. After all, the Cardinals slugger did begin the day with 12 career two-homer games. In the other Triple-A circuit, Blue Jays No. 6 prospect Danny Jansenwent deep twice himself
for Buffalo, despite telling MiLB.com's Chris Bumbaca, "I'm not like a home run hitter."
Who stayed hotBrewers OF Corey Ray, Double-A Biloxi: 3-for-5, HR, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 3 R --
Ray's home run -- a leadoff shot in the bottom of the first -- was his seventh in 12 games since July 10. That puts him in a three-way tie with Sandber Pimentel
and Corey Zangari
for most in the Minors over that span. Add in his two doubles and he has a Minors-best 13 extra-base hits in those dozen contests. Ray is hitting .375/.444/.938 since July 10 and now leads the Southern League with 27 doubles and 195 total bases while his 19 homers are tied at the top with teammate Jake Gatewood
. It's been an uneven season for the Brewers' No. 6 prospect, who is hitting .259/.351/.510 on the year, but it's a step in the right direction for a former top-100 prospect who was a below-average hitter in the Carolina League in 2017.
Who needed this oneD-backs RHP Jon Duplantier, AZL D-backs: 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K --
Arizona's top prospect hadn't pitched since May 27 with Double-A Jackson because of biceps tendinitis in his throwing arm, so his rehab appearance Sunday was a welcome sight. The fact that he faced one batter above the minimum and fanned five of the 10 batters he faced was even better. After throwing 136 innings last season, the 24-year-old right-hander only has 38 2/3 on his resume this year and could be a prime candidate to make up some of those lost frames in the Arizona Fall League this autumn.
The unexpectedCardinals RHP Alvaro Seijas, Class A Peoria: 6 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 9 K, 92 pitches, 63 strikes --
The No. 15 Cardinals prospect began the day with a 5.06 ERA, average of 5.7 K/9 and season-high of seven strikeouts in a game. Seijas' nine punchouts established a new career mark, beating out the eight he accrued on Aug. 29 last year with Rookie-level Johnson City. The 19-year-old right-hander now sports a 4.83 ERA with 65 strikeouts and 42 walks in 95 innings this season, and it's important to remember he's the same age as many 2017 prep Draft picks. He's still growing into his body and the rigors of a five-month season, and Sunday's showing is a cause for optimism.
Best matchupEric Pardinho vs. Everson Pereira:
There are three prospects spending their age-17 seasons in the Appalachian League this summer. One is Rays wunderkind Wander Franco
. The other two crossed paths Sunday when the Bluefield Blue Jays hosted the Pulaski Yankees. The Jays' No. 7 prospect only got to face New York's No. 21 prospect twice but came out on top both times. Pardinho got Pereira to pop out to the catcher in the first inning and then struck him out looking in the third. The Bluefield right-hander struck out five and scattered two hits and a walk over three scoreless innings in his side's 6-4 win and now has a 2.49 ERA with 37 strikeouts in 25 1/3 frames. Pereira, who is a plus runner with good defensive abilities in center, is hitting .288/.341/.415 through 28 games in his first Minor League season.
Who strengthened their promotion caseReds RHP Keury Mella, Triple-A Louisville: 8 IP, 5 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 4 K, 101 pitches, 64 strikes --
An eight-inning gem at Triple-A will always get the attention of the big club. That's especially true when it comes from a member of the 40-man roster who has already made two Major League appearances. The Reds' No. 20 prospect moved up to Triple-A Louisville on July 8 and now sports a 3.18 ERA in his first three starts with the International League club, after posting a 3.07 ERA with 87 strikeouts in 85 innings at Double-A Pensacola. Once considered one of the better arms in the system, Mella lost some of his luster with a rough first Double-A season in 2017. With a plus fastball and above-average slider, the 24-year-old right-hander put himself in position for another September callup.
Sam Dykstra is a reporter for MiLB.com. Follow and interact with him on Twitter, @SamDykstraMiLB.