Category: Minor Leagues

New York Yankees’ Minor League Report 7-27-16

The farm system of the New York Yankees just got a little more crowded. The trade of Aroldis Chapman brought back Adam Warren plus three Minor League players, including two of the top five prospects from the Chicago Cubs. For more information on the three players, Gleyber Torres, Billy McKinney and Rashad Crawford, click on my post found here. Crawford and Torres will be heading for Class A Tampa while McKinney will be playing for the Double A Trenton Thunder.

Now, let’s take a look at some more happenings down on the farm.

Courtesy: lohud.com

Courtesy: lohud.com

One of Torres’ and Crawford’s teammate at Tampa will be right-handed pitcher Domingo Acevedo. The 6-foot-7, 190 pound Acevedo got the call up from Class A Charleston in the middle of June. His overall numbers are outstanding tempered by the fact he is still adjusting to a higher level. In 15 starts this season, the 22-year old Acevedo has thrown a total of 82 2/3 innings, striking out 92 while walking only 18. For Tampa, he has made seven starts and has registered a respectable 3.60 ERA, striking out 45 batters in 40 innings. His best outing came on June 27th when he threw seven shutout innings, allowing only five hits and no walks while fanning six. In his next start, Acevedo whiffed a season-high 12 batters over six innings of two-run ball. Ranked as the team’s #9 prospect, he was signed by the organization from the Dominican Republic in 2012.

One spot above Acevedo in the organizational rankings is center fielder Dustin Fowler who plays for Trenton. The team’s 18th round selection in 2013 from West Laurens High School in Dexter, Georgia, the 21-year old Fowler leads the Thunder in several offensive categories including RBI’s, doubles and hits. His 108 hits places him third and his 55 RBI’s and 23 doubles ranks him eighth among all Eastern League hitters. Fowler has 13 hits in his last 39 at-bats, good for a .333 average. He also can run with 30 stolen bases in 2015 and 19 so far this season. The left-handed hitter makes solid contact but does not really walk. In 385 at-bats in 2016, Fowler has received only 17 free passes. However, as long has he can continue to stroke, a lack of walks will not be an issue.

The Pulaski Yankees of the Rookie League Appalachian League have gotten off to a slow start. They are 15-17 and in last place but 4 1/2 games out of first in the league’s East division. Pulaski is the current home of Blake Rutherford, the Yanks’ first round pick this year. The 19-year old outfielder is off to a nice start, batting .310 and owns 13 hits in his last 38 at-bats. As a team, Pulaksi is struggling with a league-worst .246 batting average and a .329 on-base percentage that ranks eighth in the ten team league. However, the Yankees are showing some pop with a collective 27 home runs, third most in the league. On the mound, the numbers are slightly better. The pitching staff is seventh in ERA at 4.62 and WHIP (Walks plus Hits per Innings Pitched) at 1.39 and their 237 strikeouts are good for seventh.

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New York Mets’ Minor League Report 7-27-16

Jose Reyes has been diagnosed with a Grade 1 left intercostal strain. Dilson Herrera was scratched from last night’s game for the Las Vegas 51’s. The easy conclusion to draw is that the New York Mets are about to put Reyes on the disabled list and recall Herrera to take his roster spot. The 22-year old Herrera, who has received 149 at-bats with the Mets over the last two years, appears to be on track to be the club’s second baseman next year. With Vegas this season, he ranks third on the team in three categories: hits with 96. home runs with 13 and RBI’s with 55.

On to other farm happenings within the organization.

Courtesy: nypost.com

Courtesy: nypost.com

Catcher Tomas Nido of the Class A St. Lucie Mets has been stinging the ball as of late. He has 17 hits in his last 45 at-bats, a .395 average with seven RBI’s and six runs scored. He leads St. Lucie in hitting at .317 and is tied for third in home runs with six. The 22-year old Nido was New York’s 8th round pick in the 2012 Draft out of Orangewood Christian School in Maitland, Florida. He has been an All-Star selection in each of the last two seasons and is on pace for his most productive season as a professional. Nido is not listed among MLB’s top 30 prospects in the Mets’s system but his numbers suggest otherwise. Only one catcher is in the organizational top 30, Ali Sanchez at #15 from the Brooklyn Cyclones. Nido deserves a spot as well.

If you are Matt Oberste, it is easy to get lost among the other Met prospects. He plays first base for Double A Binghamton, the same position and team that is home to Dominic Smith, New York’s top prospect according to MLB.com. He, like, Nido is not ranked in the top 30. However, that doesn’t mean that the 24-year old Oberste isn’t a productive player. Splitting time with Smith at first and designated hitter, his .291 batting average and 38 RBI’s are both second on the B-Mets and his .344 on-base percentage is tied with Smith for fourth. The right-handed hitting Oberste was a Post-Season All-Star in the Florida State League last season was named this year’s Top Star in the Eastern League All-Star Game with a 4 for 5, 4 RBI performance. He was New York’s 8th round selection in the 2013 Draft out of Oklahoma.

Despite struggling with a 13-19 record and in last place in the West division of the Appalachian League, the Kingsport Mets are only 3 1/2 games out of first place. 2015 fifth round selection Thomas Szapucki was outstanding for the Mets before being promoted to Brooklyn. The lefty allowed only two earned runs in 29 innings, a span covering five starts. As a team, Kingsport has good offensive numbers, ranking third in both on-base percentage at .342 and stolen bases with 41 and is sixth in batting average at .261. However, despite Szapucki’s dominance, the pitching staff has been less than average. Their WHIP (Walks plus Hits per Innings Pitched) of 1.43 is ninth in the ten team league and their 4.71 ERA is eighth. The only solid number for the unit as a whole is strikeouts as they have compiled 298 of them, good for second.

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New York Mets Minor League Report 7-20-16

With deals at last year’s trading deadline along with the re-acquisition of Kelly Johnson earlier this season, don’t expect there to be much movement within the farm system of the New York Mets. A lower-level player could be dealt for a veteran reliever but there won’t be the dealing of a top prospect like Michael Fulmer was a year ago. Players that were promoted such as Michael Conforto last year and Brandon Nimmo this year means the likelihood of a significant Minor League piece helping out the big club will be limited to September 1st call-ups or the occasional spot start.

Courtesy milb.com

Courtesy milb.com

Left-handed pitcher P.J. Conlon just might be the Mets’ organizational Pitcher of the Year for 2016. The 22-year Conlon was recently promoted to St. Lucie of the Florida State League where his domination has continued. In five games for the Mets, he is 3-0 with a 2.18 ERA, a span covering 33 innings. He has allowed eight earned runs while surrendering only one home run with a WHIP (Walks plus Hits per Innings Pitched) of 1.00. For the season, he is a sparkling 11-1 with a 1.94 ERA in 17 starts, pitching a total of 111 1/3 innings. Conlon, born in Belfast, Northern Ireland was the Mets’ 13th round selection in the 2015 Draft out of the University of San Diego.

Let’s stay in the Sunshine State where St. Lucie has gotten of to a fast start in the second half of Florida State League play. Before losing on Tuesday night, the Mets had reeled off six straight victories, putting their record at 15-10, in first place by a half game in the FSL’s South division. This mark is all the more impressive considering that shortstop Amed Rosario, one of the team’s best players in the first half, was promoted to Double A Binghamton. However, the one-two punch of Conlon and Ricky Knapp at the top of the rotation means St. Lucie will continue to be a tough team to face as the Summer rolls on

First baseman Dominic Smith continues to shine for Binghamton. He has 14 hits in his last 37 at-bats, a span covering ten games. The organization’s #1 prospect according to mlb.com, Smith is fourth among Eastern League hitters with 65 RBI’s. New York’s #1 pick in 2013 out of Junipero Serra High School in Gardena, California, Smith leads the B-Mets in batting average at .294, hits with 98 and doubles with 18 and is second in on-base percentage at .353. The 21-year old Lefty swinger was selected for this year’s Futures Game and played for the United States squad. He went 0-4 with an RBI on a force out, one of only three runs the U.S. scored on the way to a 11-3 loss. His steady rise through the organization should result in a promotion to the big club some time in 2017.

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New York Yankees Minor League Report 7-20-16

The trading deadline is near which means the rosters in the Minor League system of the New York Yankees could look a little different over the next couple of weeks. If the team does start dealing veterans such as Aroldis Chapman and/or Andrew Miller, a few new prospects will began to filter through the organization. What does that mean for the current group already on their respective teams? It will be like Spring Training all over again with players fighting it out for time in the lineup and on the mound.

Courtesy: NJ.com

Courtesy: NJ.com

The long road back for outfielder Mason Williams is almost complete. He was once the darling of the Yanks’ Minor League prospects after being taken in the fourth round of the 2010 Draft, finally making it to the Majors last June. After recording six hits in 21 at-bats for the Yankees, Williams injured his shoulder diving back to first base. He hadn’t played a game in 2016 until the beginning of this month. After rehabbing in Florida in the Gulf Coast League and then the Florida State League, the 24-year old Williams was promoted to Triple A Scranton Wilkes-Barre this week. As long as he shows the organization that he is fully recovered, expect him to be a call-up in September, if not sooner depending on what happens with Carlos Beltran.

Speaking of the Railriders, they have continued their status as the top team in the International League. They opened the second half of their season by winning four in a row in Gwinnett before dropping the first two games of a three game set in Charlotte. Their record stands at 60-37 in first place by three games over Leigh Valley. Chad Green enjoyed another great outing on the mound on Thursday.  He threw eight shutout inning of one-hit, no walk ball, striking out eight and lowering his ERA to a league-best 1.41. Come playoff time, the Railriders’ roster figures to have quite a mix of players brought up when the rosters expand on September 1st. We will see if they can maintain that same blistering pace of play as they seek to become International League champions.

The Class A Staten Island Yankees have a dominating arm of their own in right-hander Adonis Rosa. He has allowed a grand total of one run in his last four appearances, three of them starts, a span covering 23 innings. For the season, Rosa has thrown a total of 34 innings and allowed only seven walks while striking out 27. Opponents are hitting .189 off him and his WHIP (Walks plus Hit per Innings Pitched) is 0.88. The 21-year old Rosa was signed as an International free agent out of the Dominican Republic in December 2013. He registered a 1.62 ERA in 12 outings in 2014 in the Dominican Summer League and a 3.93 ERA and seven wins for Pulaski of the Appalachian League last year.

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New York Mets’ Minor League Report 7-13-16

Over the last year, the New York Mets have dipped into their Minor League system quite a bit. They have promoted promising outfielders Michael Conforto and Brandon Nimmo and have dealt away promising prospects such as Michael Fulmer in order to improve the Major League roster. It is safe to say other than the shuttling back and forth of relievers from Triple A Las Vegas, the Mets will not be touching players on the farm in order to swing more deals. In order to deal a prized player such as shortstop Amed Rosario, New York would be looking for a sizeable return that is under club control for at least the next two seasons.

Courtesy: milb.com

Courtesy: milb.com

The Las Vegas 51’s came into their All-Star Break with a record of 46-43, good for second place and 6 1/2 games behind the El Paso Chihuahuas. They dropped three consecutive games heading into the break and owned a mark of 4-6 in July. The 51’s are sending three players to the Triple A All-Star Game which will be played Wednesday night: third baseman T.J. Rivera, designated hitter Travis Taijeron and starting pitcher Gabriel Ynoa. Taijeron participated in the AAA Home Run Derby but was eliminated in the first round.

With a record of 39-49, the Double A Binghamton Mets haven’t had a lot to cheer for. One of the bright spots in the team is second baseman Derrik Gibson who was signed by the organization last November. In his last ten games, the 26-year old Gibson has 14 hits in 35 at-bats, a .400 average. He was originally selected in the second round of the 2008 Draft out of Seaford High School in Seaford, Delaware by the Boston Red Sox. The 26-year old Gibson spent seven seasons in their organization, rising as high as the Triple A level in 2014. For the B-Mets, the right-swinging Gibson is hitting .283 and owns a .366 on-base percentage with eight stolen bases, both club-highs.

Ricky Knapp of the St. Lucie Mets continues to shine in the Florida State League. His 2.08 ERA is second-best among all Sunshine State pitching and he also owns a 1.11 WHIP (Walks plus Hits per Innings Pitched). The 24-year old Knapp, taken in the eighth round of the 2013 out of Florida Gulf Coast, is 7-4 in 90 2/3 innings over 14 total appearances, 13 of which were starts. The right-handed pitcher made one start for the B-Mets on July 2nd, hurling seven innings of two-run ball in a 9-2 Mets’ victory. In three of his 13 starts, Knapp has allowed zero runs, pitching a total of 22 innings in those outings.

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New York Yankees’ Minor League Report 7-13-16

There was quite a bit of drama in the farm system of the New York Yankees this past week. We learned that outfielder Aaron Judge went on the disabled list with a mild PCL sprain and bone bruise on his left knee. The injury is expected to keep Judge on the sidelines for at least three weeks. The other setback was the suspension of shortstop Jorge Mateo. The Tampa Yankees’ star was given the boot for two weeks for what is being called insubordination. At first, there was the thought that he was upset about not being promoted to Double A Trenton. However, Brendan Kuty at NJ.com wrote that it was for an “off-field issue the Yankees had already warned him about. The suspension cost Mateo a chance to play in the since-completed Futures Game.

Courtesy: NJ.com

Courtesy: NJ.com

The AAA Scranton Wilkes-Barre Railriders steamed into the All-Star Break with an International League-best record of 56-35. They own a four game lead in the North Division and are an astounding 31-14 on the road. Scranton is 7-3 in July, helping them maintain a somewhat comfortable lead despite all but one team in their division being over .500. The Railriders have four players that were selected for Wednesday night’s AAA All-Star Game: Judge, fellow outfielder Ben Gamel, catcher Gary Sanchez and starting pitcher Chad Green. Sanchez also played in the Futures Game, starting behind the plate and going hitless in his two at-bats as his World Squad beat the U.S. team by a score of 11-3.

Tyler Austin was once considered one of the top prospects in the Yankees’ system, having been named its Minor League Player of the Year in 2012. However, he has been passed on the depth chart by the likes of Judge, Mateo and Sanchez. Austin, taken in the 13th round of the 2010 Draft from Heritage High School in Conyers, Georgia, has seen time throughout his career at first base, third base and the outfield. He has split 2016 between Trenton and Scranton, hitting .277 with a .371 on-base percentage. Nine of his 13 home runs have come with the Railriders and he owns a total of 61 RBI’s. Austin has played most of the year at first base meaning a September call-up could be in line for him.

Right-handed pitcher Yefrey Ramirez made quite the debut for Tampa. He was named the Florida State League Pitcher of the Week for games ending July 3rd by allowing one run over seven innings, walking no one and striking out 11 in a 5-1 victory over Lakeland. The Yanks took the 22-year old Ramirez in the first round of the Rule 5 Draft last December from the Arizona Diamondbacks. He was originally signed by the D-backs as a non-drafted free agent at the age of 17 in January 2011. Prior to his promotion to Tampa, Ramirez was 4-2 with a 2.80 ERA for the Charleston River Dogs. He struck out 66 and walked only 14 in 61 innings pitched.

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New York Mets Minor League Report 7-6-16

Jose Reyes is now officially back in a New York Mets’ uniform. Along the way, he stopped in a couple of farm teams in order to get back into Major League shape. He went hitless in six plate appearances for the Class A Brooklyn Cyclones and had six hits in 31 plate appearances for the Double A Binghamton Mets. This was the big story coming out of the Mets’ farm system over the past week along with the usual comings and goings at Triple A Las Vegas.

Courtesy: nypost.com

Courtesy: nypost.com

On to some more action within the Mets’ Minor League organization.

T.J. Rivera continues to hit for Triple A Las Vegas. Only July 4th, the Bronx native lit some fireworks of his own with a grand slam and six RBI’s as the 51’s defeated the Salt Lake Bees by a score of 17-6. The 27-year old shortstop is second among all Pacific Coast League hitters with a .351 batting average and is tied for fourth in RBI’s with 59. He was also selected to play in the AAA All-Star Game to be held on July 13th in Charlotte, North Carolina. Despite his gaudy production, the Mets seem to have no room for Rivera on their Major League roster. However, look for him to be part of the wave of September 1st call-ups.

First baseman/outfielder Kevin Taylor of the Class A St. Lucie Mets was named the Florida State League Player of the Week for the week of June 27th-July 3rd. He had 13 hits in 31 at-bats with 11 RBI’s, two doubles, two home runs and seven runs scored. The 24-year old Taylor leads the Mets with seven home runs and 34 RBI’s and is tied for first among all FSL batters with a .396 OBP. He was originally taken in the 34th round by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2011 out of Western Nevada College. After not advancing past the Single A Midwest League ranks in the Dodgers’ chain, Taylor found himself playing two years of Independent ball before the Mets signed him in February.

The Single A Brooklyn Cyclones have rebounded nicely after a slow start. They are 6-4 over their last ten games, moving their record up to 9-10 and in second place in the New York-Penn League’s McNamara division. It’s been a mixed bag both on the mound and at the dish for the Cyclones. The pitching staff ranks first in strikeouts with 203 and tied for third in WHIP at 1.15 but eighth in ERA at 3.21. The offense ranks ninth in batting average at .225 and ninth in OBP at .307. However, they are in the upper half of the league in runs scored with 82. It will be an interstate rivalry weekend as the Hudson Valley Renegades make their way to Coney Island this weekend for a three game set against Brooklyn.

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New York Yankees Minor League Report 7-6-16

A big story last week with the New York Yankees’ Minor League system revolved around Nick Swisher.  The veteran outfielder/first baseman opted out of his Minor League deal to be with his wife, actress Joanna Garcia Swisher as the couple welcomed the birth of their daughter, Sailor. The 35-year old Swisher hit .255 with a .297 OBP in 55 games for the Triple A Scranton Wilkes-Barre Railriders. With all of the first basemen woes for the Yankees earlier this season, you would have thought Swisher would have been in New York at some point. I suppose management feels he has next-to-nothing left. Despite this, Swisher has vowed that he will be looking for a place to play in 2017. We congratulate him and his family on their new addition.

Credit: William Perlman/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Credit: William Perlman/THE STAR-LEDGER via USA TODAY Sports

Now for some on-field action within the Yankee organization.

The Trenton Tunder of the Double A Eastern League have had quite the season. They own a mark of 53-32, second best in the 12 team league. However, they are in the unfortunate position of playing in the same division as the team with the best record, the Reading Fightin’ Phils who are 61-24. Trenton owns the top spot in the pitching categories, leading all Eastern teams in ERA at 3.04, strikeouts with 715 and WHIP (Walks plus Hits per Innings Pitched) at 1.22. Their bats aren’t too shabby, either, placing fifth in both batting average at .258 and on-base percentage (OBP) at .329.

One of the newest members of the Thunder is 21-year old third baseman Miguel Andujar, who was promoted from Class A Tampa in mid-June. Andujar, who was signed as an international free agent by the Yanks in 2011, hasn’t let the higher caliber of play slow him down. He is hitting .342 with a .372 OBP in 73 at-bats with Trenton. He hasn’t stopped producing runs, either as he already owns 17 RBI’s in 20 games, this after ranking among the Florida State League leaders with ten homers and 41 RBI’s. Andujar is currently ranked as New York’s 14th-best prospect according to mlb.com.

The Class A Charleston River Dogs have gotten off to a lackluster start after capturing the first half of the division title of the South Atlantic League. However, center fielder Jeff Hendrix has only begun to heat up. The team’s fourth round selection out of Oregon St. last year, the 22-year old Hendrix is now hitting .299, a tremendous improvement over the .247 he was hitting on June 1st. He has 15 hits over his last 35 a-bats, a span covering ten games. His .394 OBP ranks seventh among all South Atlantic League hitters.

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New York Yankees Minor League Report 6-29-16

The Tampa Yankees of the Florida State League are heading to the playoffs. I know, it’s a bit early for that kind of talk but by virtue of them winning the first half of their division, they have assured the Yankees’ organization of at least one of their teams playing for a title. The question is, will super prospect Jorge Mateo be with the club come playoff time? The team’s #1 prospect is enjoying a solid campaign, hitting .270 with a league-leading eight triples. Don’t be surprised if the 21-year old Mateo moves up to Double A ball within the next month.

Courtesy: newsday.com

Courtesy: newsday.com

Here are some other doings down on the farm.

-Right-handed pitcher Chad Green continues to make a case to re-join the Yankees’ staff. The 25-year old Green, who made two appearances for the Bombers earlier this season, is sporting a 1.54 ERA for Triple A Scranton Wilkes-Barre. He has struck out 82 batters in 81 2/3 innings and has a WHIP (Walks plus Hits per Innings Pitched) of 0.98. Green’s ERA is tops in the International League while his WHIP is third-best. In his last outing, he allowed only three hits and one walk while striking out six over six shutout innings.

-Speaking of Scranton, the Railriders own the International League’s best record at 47-32. However, their lead in the North Division is only a single game thanks to the Rochester Red Wings, the top farm club of the Minnesota Twins. Scranton is a well-balanced club, among the league leaders in team hitting and pitching categories. They are hitting a collective .263 with an OBP of .330, both tops in the 14 team league. On the mound, they own the best ERA at 3.13 and have allowed a league-low 610 hits. The staff ranks second in strikeouts with 638 and is second in WHIP at 1.21.

-Two Yankees’ Minor Leaguers will be showcased in the Futures Game to played during All-Star weekend. Mateo and catcher Gary Sanchez, arguably the organization’s top two prospects, were named to the World squad. Mateo is having an outstanding campaign with eight triples and 26 stolen bases for Tampa and should be promoted to Trenton before the end of the Summer. Sanchez had a brief call-up to New York earlier this year and is hitting .280 with eight home runs and 32 RBI’s. Sanchez played in last year’s contest, smacking a double.

-The Single A Staten Island Yankees have gotten off to a blistering start. The team is 10-2, highlighted by a combined ten inning no-hitter by Drew Finley and Josh Roeder. This came one day after they opened the season by outlasting the Brooklyn Cyclones 3-2 in 20 innings. The Yanks are getting it done on the mound, placing second in strikeouts with 125 and second in WHIP at 1.03 in the 14 team New York-Penn League. First baseman Kane Sweeney, the Yanks’ 29th round selection in 2015, has 14 hits in 35 at-bats, good for a .400 average.

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New York Mets Minor League Report 6-29-16

The Minor League system for the New York Mets has seen quite a bit of action from some prominent Major Leaguers. Brandon Nimmo switched places with Michael Conforto as the former was called up to make his Major League debut while the latter was sent to Triple A Las Vegas to get himself worked out of a horrific slump. Most interesting of all was the return of Jose Reyes, who has begun his second stint in New York with a couple of games with the Brooklyn Cyclones. By the end of this week, there is a good chance that Reyes will make his return to Citi Field.

Courtesy: milb.com

Courtesy: milb.com

Here are some other happenings down on the farm.

Per Marc Craig at Newsday (via mlbtraderumors.com), the Mets have no interest in trading shortstop prospect Amed Rosario. The 20-year old Rosario was recently promoted to Double A Binghamton after hitting .309 with a .359 on-base percentage at St. Lucie of the Florida State League. He would be the centerpiece in any major trade New York would make at the deadline but is deemed almost untouchable.

-Another shortstop, Brooklyn’s Colby Woodmansee is off to an excellent start. The team’s fifth round pick earlier this month, the 21-year old Woodmansee has 11 hits in his first 28 at-bats for the Cyclones. He played three seasons with the Sun Devils, slugging 47 extra-base hits and scoring 75 runs over the last two years.

-A pair of Met Minor Leaguers will be playing in the MLB Futures Game during All-Star weekend. First baseman Dominic Smith will represent the United States while second baseman Dilson Herrera was placed on the World squad. The 21-year old Smith, ranked by mlb.com as New York’s #1 prospect, is hitting .259 with a .317 OBP and 48 RBI’s at Binghamton. The 22-year old Herrera is hitting .278 with 11 homers and 44 RBI’s at Las Vegas.

-Speaking of Vegas, they own a mark of 41-37, good for second place in the Pacific Southern Division of the Pacific Coast League. They are 4.5 games off the pace set by the El Paso Chihuahuas, the top farm team of the San Diego Padres. Shortstop T.J. Rivera, second in the PCL with a .361 batting average, was just activated from the disabled list. In order to make room for Rivera, the 51’s released third baseman Danny Muno.

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