Pitchers of the Week

For the week ending August 23

Tigers prospect Thad Weber fanned 10 in his near-perfect no-hitter this week. (Kevin Pataky/MiLB.com)

By Josh Jackson / Special to MLB.com | August 24, 2009 9:10 AM

International League
Josh Towers, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre
2-0, 0.00 ERA, 2 G, 2 GS, 12 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 5 BB, 11 SO
Yankees farmhand Josh Towers turned in two scoreless starts this week, allowing two hits and three walks over six shutout frames against Durham on Monday and then surrendering two hits and two walks over another six lights-out innings on Saturday. He struck out five in each outing. Dating back to July 28, Towers has allowed just two runs over his most recent 26 innings pitched. The right-hander started the season 0-4 but has bounced back to 6-6.

Pacific Coast League
Wade LeBlanc, Portland
2-0, 0.69 ERA, 2 G, 2 GS, 13 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 12 SO
After giving up a run on three hits over six innings to earn a win on Monday, Padres prospect Wade LeBlanc rolled over Sacramento on Saturday. He threw seven shutout innings, scattering three hits, walking one and picking up seven strikeouts. LeBlanc now has five or more strikeouts in all of his last four starts, and he's lost only one game in his last seven appearances.

Eastern League
Thad Weber, Erie
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 9 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 10 SO
Thad Weber was nearly perfect in Saturday night's start -- he watched one batter reach on an error in the third inning and he hit another with a pitch to open the eighth. Weber, the Tigers' 16th-round pick in the '08 Draft, struck out 10 in the no-hitter. He's now 3-0 with a 2.76 ERA in August.

Southern League
Jeremy Papelbon, Tennessee
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 2 G, 2 GS, 12.2 IP, 0 SV, 8 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 10 SO
Cubs prospect Jeremy Papelbon ended up with a no-decision on Tuesday, even though he gave up just one unearned run over six solid innings of work, surrendering four hits and a walk while striking out six. In his next start, on Sunday, he brought a no-hitter into the fifth inning and left the game after 6 2/3 shutout innings, this time picking up the W. He whiffed four and hit one batter in the victory.

Texas League
Keith Weiser, Tulsa
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 SO
Rockies 2006 first-rounder Keith Weiser sparkled in his best start of the year on Saturday, allowing three hits over seven shutout innings. Weiser's oustanding start vs. Midland could be considered an act of revenge -- in his last start (Aug. 16), the RockHounds teed off on him, scoring six runs -- all earned -- on 11 hits in six innings. This time, Weiser allowed two singles and a walk to start the first inning and then settled down. He didn't let another Midland hitter to reach base until he surrendered a two-out single in the seventh.

California League
Anthony Bass, Lake Elsinore
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 2 G, 1 GS, 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 SO
Anthony Bass worked a perfect inning in relief against Lancaster on Thursday, then he threw five innings of one-hit ball against Rancho Cucamonga in Saturday's start. In addition to the five punchouts the Padres prospect piled up in that game, he got seven groundball outs and faced the minimum after a doubleplay erased the Quakes' single in the fourth. In his last inning in the game, Bass struck out two and induced a pop-up.

Carolina League
Matt McSwain, Lynchburg
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 1 CG, 1 SHO, 7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 SO
Bucs prospect Matt McSwain tossed a seven-inning, complete-game shutout against Winston-Salem this week, fanning six and giving up three hits without issuing a walk to earn the win. His 10th victory ties him for second in the league, his 3.50 ERA puts him sixth in that category and he's second with 131 1/3 innings pitched this season. The W broke a two-game skid, and it was his first shutout appearance in the Carolina League since he silenced Wilmington for six innings on May 17.

Florida State League
Jairo Heredia, Tampa
2-0, 0.75 ERA, 2 G, 2 GS, 1 CG, 1 SHO, 12 IP, 14 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 5 SO
The Yankees' Jairo Heredia hasn't had any problems adjusting to life at the Class A Advanced level. In his Florida State League debut on Monday, the 19-year-old Dominican hurled a seven-inning, complete-game shutout, scattering six hits and walking two. He followed that with five solid frames on Sunday, giving up one run on eight hits and two walks while striking out three, and he picked up his second win in as many chances.

Midwest League
Simon Castro, Fort Wayne
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 1 CG, 1 SHO, 7 IP, 0 H, 0 R 0 ER, 0 BB, 9 SO
Simon Castro threw a no-hitter against Dayton on Tuesday, and he was perfect in the seven-inning game except for the batter he plunked in the second. The Padres prospect struck out nine over the course of the no-no, and his 142 strikeouts on the season are 15 more than his closest competitor has. Castro's gem comes after one of his worst starts of the year, a five-inning outing in which he gave up six runs on seven hits.

South Atlantic League
Nick Hagadone, Lake County
0-0, 0.00 ERA, 2 G, 0 GS, 6 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 10 SO
Nick Hagadone has yet to earn a decision since coming to the Cleveland organization in the deal that netted the Red Sox Victor Martinez, but his pitching this week has been as good as the Indians could have hoped for. He struck out five and surrendered a hit over three shutout innings Monday, and he struck out five more over three hitless frames on Saturday.

Appalachian League
Wilking Rodriguez, Princeton
0-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO
Some guys are just plain unlucky. Five no-hit innings wasn't enough to get the Rays' Wilking Rodriguez his second win of the season. Rodriguez is in his first year of pro ball in America, and he's somehow ended up with a 1-4 record to go with his 3.08 ERA. If Rodriguez continues to throw like he did on Tuesday -- four strikeouts and a walk over five hitless innings -- the wins are sure to follow.

New York-Penn League
Brandon Moore, Brooklyn
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 1 CG, 1 SHO, 7 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 3 BB,6 SO
Mets prospect Brandon Moore threw the first no-hitter of his career and in Brooklyn Cyclones history on Sunday. The 2008 draftee hit a batter and walked three, but Aberdeen hitters couldn't get wood on the ball all game. He struck out six in his second shutout of the season, and his 2.15 ERA is good for fourth in the league. Moore is also in the top 10 in the league in strikeouts and wins.

Northwest League
Craig Westcott, Salem-Keizer
1-0, 0.00 ERA, 1 G, 1 GS, 5 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 SO
The Giants' 2009 30th-round pick, Craig Westcott, refused to allow a hit in his first Northwest League shutout appearance this week, muzzling Everett over five innings on Saturday. He struck out six in the win -- his second since joining the Volcanoes on July 31 -- and he walked just two. Westcott has now collected 24 strikeouts over his most recent 15 innings pitched.

Pioneer League
Garrett Richards, Orem
2-0, 0.69 ERA, 2 G, 2 GS, 13 IP, 11 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 9 SO
This week, Garrett Richards, the 42nd overall pick in this year's Draft, reminded the Angels why they chose him. On Tuesday, Richards threw six innings -- the longest outing of his young career -- and didn't allow a run while scattering six hits and a hit batsman. He eclipsed that performance to earn his second win, surrendering one run on five hits and striking out five over seven innings.

Josh Jackson is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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