In his first stint in Double-A, Brendan McKay has been nothing short of dominant. Friday provided more of the game.The third-ranked Rays prospect struck out seven over five innings, allowing three hits and three walks, as Montgomery blanked Biloxi, 2-0, in the first game of a doubleheader at MGM Park.
In his first stint in Double-A, Brendan McKay has been nothing short of dominant. Friday provided more of the game.
The third-ranked Rays prospect struck out seven over five innings, allowing three hits and three walks, as Montgomery blanked Biloxi, 2-0, in the first game of a doubleheader at MGM Park.
McKay (2-0) came into the start having allowed three earned runs while fanning 40 over 24 2/3 innings in five starts. With seven more punchouts against the Shuckers, he grabbed the Southern League lead.
Back on the hill Friday, the left-hander threw 56 of 85 pitches for strikes as he lowered his ERA to a season-best 1.82, which ranks fifth on the circuit.
Gameday box score
Michael O'Neill reached on an error to start the first against McKay, but the 2017 first-round pick struck out two to avoid trouble. After working around baserunners in the second, third and fourth, McKay found himself in a precarious situation in the fifth.
After C.J. Hinojosa grounded out, Alexander Alvarez walked, O'Neill reached on an error by third baseman Kevin Padlo and Brewers No. 30 prospect Trent Grisham drew another free pass to load the bases. McKay needed only eight pitches to fan Weston Wilson and Patrick Leonard, thwarting the threat and preserving the Biscuits' 2-0 lead.
It was the second scoreless start of the season for the southpaw, who's yielded one run or fewer in all but one of his outings. He lowered his WHIP to 0.88, good for fourth in the league.
McKay made his full-season debut last year, going 3-2 with a 2.41 ERA, 0.88 WHIP and 103 strikeouts over 78 1/3 innings between Class A Bowling Green, Class Advanced Charlotte and two rehab starts in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League.
The two-way phenom has moved away from first base this season and has been strictly a designated hitter when not on the mound. In 18 games at the plate, he's batting .164/.254/.180 with a double and seven RBIs. A year ago, McKay hit .214 with six homers and a .727 OPS in 56 games.
Rays No. 4 prospect Jesús Sánchez drove in both runs for Montgomery with a sacrifice fly and a groundout.
Andrew Battifarano is a contributor to MiLB.com. Follow him on Twitter, @AndrewAtBatt</b