Smokin' Aces - Reno Three Party

By Jake Trybulski / Reno Aces | March 1, 2019 4:10 PM

While Aceball is still a little over a month away for Triple-A Reno, it has already gotten started during Spring Training. Future, current and former Aces are impacting Major League teams during big league camp and beyond.

Pitching wins 2012 Championship

Barry Enright ('11, '12, '18) led Reno in wins (13) and innings pitched (163.0) during the Aces' 2012 PCL Championship campaign. However, Enright is now transitioning to his post-playing career in Single-A Hillsboro shaping young arms as the pitching coach.

Three notable pitchers still throwing from that team? Trevor Bauer, Patrick Corbin, and Tyler Skaggs, quite the 1-2-3 punch no matter how you shape it.

Trevor Bauer ('12), while he wasn't flying drones, had the best season of his career a season ago with the Cleveland Indians going 12-6 with a 2.21 ERA and 221 strikeouts in 175.1 innings pitched. He, unfortunately, missed five weeks due to a stress fracture in his leg or he surely would have been in the AL Cy Young conversation. Bauer was part of the first pitching staff in MLB history to have four starters record 200 or more strikeouts in the same season (Kluber, Carrasco, Clevinger, and Bauer).

His first spring start of 2019 wasn't too shabby, either. Bauer threw a scoreless three innings Monday against the Texas Rangers allowing one hit, one walk and struck out two.

In a VERY slow baseball offseason, the market's top pitching prize, Patrick Corbin ('12), signed a six-year $140 million deal in December with the Washington Nationals. Christmas came early for the lefty with a backloaded contract that will pay $35 million in his age 35 season.

Corbin went 3-2 with a 3.44 ERA in 52.1 innings for the Aces in 2012 before being called up for the D-backs for good in late June. Corbin was a vital part of the Arizona rotation the last six seasons being named to two All-Star teams along the way (2013, 2018).

In his first spring start with the Nats, Corbin has been sharp. He threw two innings Monday against the Atlanta Braves allowing one hit and striking out two including budding superstar Ronald Acuna Jr.

A 2010 trade brought Tyler Skaggs ('12, '13) to Arizona in exchange for three-time all-star Dan Haren who headed to Anaheim in the deal. Skaggs went 4-2 with a 2.91 ERA during the Aces' championship season in 2012.

In 2013, he was shipped back to the Angels in a three-team deal that landed Mark Trumbo in a D-backs uniform. Since then, Skaggs has battled injuries throughout his career including a clash with Tommy John surgery in 2014.

Before last season, Skaggs hadn't thrown more than 113 innings in a big-league season. In 2018, he was on his way to his best season yet compiling a 7-5 record and 2.57 ERA in 98.0 innings pre-all-star break. After the break, Skaggs struggled throwing just 27.0 innings while going 1-5 with a stint on the DL (IL) with an abductor strain.

"I actually think he can be an All-Star, quite frankly," Angels' manager Brad Ausmus told the OC Register in February. "He's got that type of ability. He showed flashes of it last year. That's part of the reason why I think he can actually do it."

Skaggs' spring got off to a hot start striking out the side in the first inning against the Texas Rangers Thursday but struggled in inning two. He allowed four runs including two home runs and two walks.

Skaggs signed a one year, $3.7 million deal to remain in an Angels uniform this upcoming season.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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