The calendar still reads April, but Ryan Weathers seems to already be in midseason form.San Diego's No. 10 prospect faced the minimum while allowing only one hit and a walk over six scoreless innings as Class A Fort Wayne fell to Bowling Green, 3-1, at Parkview Field on Monday night.
The calendar still reads April, but Ryan Weathers seems to already be in midseason form.
San Diego's No. 10 prospect faced the minimum while allowing only one hit and a walk over six scoreless innings as Class A Fort Wayne fell to Bowling Green, 3-1, at Parkview Field on Monday night.
Throwing 53 of 76 pitches for strikes, Weathers (2-0) didn't allow a Hot Rods player to reach second base, retiring the final seven batters he faced after top Rays prospectWander Franco singled to left-center field in the fourth inning.
MLB.com's No. 88 overall prospect strung together four strikeouts, including fanning the side in the fourth.
Weathers has been sharp the first month of the season with a 2-0 record and a 1.59 ERA over 22 2/3 innings spanning four starts. He has struck out 28 while allowing four earned runs on 18 hits and three walks.
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The early success comes as no shock to TinCaps pitching coach Matt Williams.
"I don't think it is surprising to me or anyone in the organization," he said. "The kid is a competitor and has done a tremendous job locating his fastball, whether it be in or out, up or down."
A key adjustment for Weathers this offseason was trading his curveball in for a slider.
"This is my first year with the organization, so I didn't see the curveball, but the slider has been a really good pitch for him," his coach said. "It was strong tonight and the other night, landing it early in the count. With a lot of lefties in the lineup tonight, he was able to use it a good bit."
The son of former big league pitcher David Weathers, the 6-foot-1 left-hander has the physical pedigree, but it might be the mental side of the game where his father helps the most.
"Growing up around the game and his dad having the experiences that he had, he's able to lean on him whenever he has questions," Williams said.
Only 19, Weathers needs to "continue to develop his off-speed stuff and continue to get stronger," according to his coach, but there is no doubt whether or not he has the potential to one day get the call to the Majors.
"I definitely think he is a big leaguer," Williams said. "His ability to locate his fastball like he does, especially on the arm side is very, very good at a young age."
Bowling Green right-hander Easton McGee kept up with Weathers, scattering three hits and three walks through five frames.
The game remained scoreless until the bottom of the seventh when Agustin Ruiz singled past second base to score Dwanya Williams-Sutton for the TinCaps.
The Hot Rods rallied in the ninth a two-run homer by Ford Proctor and Roberto Alvarez's RBI single.
Brian Stultz is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @brianjstultz.