Prospect Roundup: Games of June 15

Winker enjoys perfect day at plate; Gonsalves, Hansen fan 10

Reds No. 2 prospect Jesse Winker has a .305 average over 167 career games at Triple-A. (David Monseur/MiLB.com)

By Sam Dykstra / MiLB.com | June 16, 2017 12:50 PM

Reds OF Jesse Winker, Triple-A Louisville: 3-for-3, 2 2B, 2 BB -- For Reds fans, this was a dream performance for the team's No. 2 prospect. Winker reached in all five of his plate appearances in a 6-4 loss to Charlotte and had two doubles after entering the night with only 12 extra-base hits in his first 60 games. In addition, the two walks give the 23-year-old outfielder more free passes this season (30) than strikeouts (29). The hit tool has never been a question for Winker, whose .308 average and .389 OBP both rank third in the International League. But without much power (.393 slugging), those hits can run hollow. With Adam Duvall and Scott Schebler providing plenty of pop in the Cincinnati corner outfield spots, the Reds can afford to have Winker try to round out his game in Triple-A.

Video: Louisville's Winker hits second double

Twins LHP Stephen Gonsalves, Double-A Chattanooga: 7 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 10 K, 1 HR, 93 pitches, 66 strikes -- After missing the first six weeks of the season because of a shoulder injury, Gonsalves has looked strong in his return. Thursday marked the second time in six starts that he lasted seven innings, and he set a season high with 10 strikeouts. The 22-year-old southpaw owns a 3.18 ERA and 0.91 WHIP with 42 K's and eight walks in 34 innings since rejoining the Lookouts. Only Alec Hansen (50) -- more below -- and A.J. Puk (44) have more strikeouts in the Minors since Gonsalves made his season debut on May 20. Shoulder injuries are worrisome, especially before the season even gets going, but the Twins' No. 2 prospect has shown few weaknesses when on the mound. 

Red Sox 3B Rafael Devers, Double-A Portland: 2-for-4, HR, RBI, R -- The calls to move Devers quickly quieted down at the end of May when the 20-year-old third baseman went 8-for-48 (.167) over the last dozen games of the month. They're back on with a vengeance in June. Boston's top prospect has gone deep in back-to-back games and is 18-for-47 (.383) with four homers, six doubles and 11 RBIs in 12 games this month. Despite being the youngest player in the Eastern League following the promotion of Gleyber Torres, MLB.com's No. 12 overall prospect ranks fourth in the circuit with a .929 OPS through 57 games this season. His home run Thursday gives him 12 on the season, a career high, and it's only the middle of June. The Red Sox continue to have a hole at third base, and the hotter Devers gets in the Minors, the louder the shouts to bring him to Boston, or at least Triple-A Pawtucket, will get.

Video: Portland's Devers drives homer to right-center

Mariners SS Rayder Ascanio, Class A Advanced Modesto: 4-for-5, HR, 2B, 2 RBI, 3 R, K, SB, CS -- A crazy year for the Mariners' No. 27 prospect got a big boost Thursday night when Ascanio matched his season high for hits and fell just a triple shy of the cycle. The 21-year-old shortstop began the season with Class A Clinton, joined Triple-A Tacoma for a three-game cameo in mid-May, moved back to Clinton and then got the bump to Modesto early last week. This is his second trip to the California League -- he spent most of the 2015 season there -- and the early returns are much more encouraging this time around. Following Thursday, Ascanio is 11-for-37 (.297) with a homer, four doubles and seven walks in his first 11 games with the Nuts. The Venezuela native is best-known for his glove at a premium position, and that tool will play anywhere. He'll need to hit more to break above the Class A levels for anything longer than a few games, and the hope is that he can sustain this latest run over a longer stretch in the Cal League to make that happen.

White Sox RHP Alec Hansen, Class A Kannapolis: 6 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 10 K, 86 pitches, 61 strikes -- Hansen has been a strikeout fiend in his first full season, so let this performance lock in that reputation. Thursday marked the third time in his last five starts that the No. 10 White Sox prospect has reached double digits in K's. He now has 92 strikeouts in 72 2/3 innings, good for third in the Minors this season behind Wilmer Font (102) and Puk (98). Beyond just punchouts, his other numbers (2.48 ERA, 2.62 FIP, 7.6 percent walk rate, .204 average-against) are also strong. The White Sox sent their 2016 second-rounder to the South Atlantic League after control issues caused his stock to drop at the University of Oklahoma last spring, but he's shown few issues at Class A through the first half. A move to Class A Advanced Winston-Salem should come not long after next Tuesday's Sally League All-Star Game.

Sam Dykstra is a reporter for MiLB.com. Follow and interact with him on Twitter, @SamDykstraMiLB. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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