This past week started out really well for the KC Royals with a home sweep of the Tampa Bay Rays. They then won the first game of their road trip in Minnesota. However they have now lost three in a row (they went 4-3 this past week). The Royals continue on the road in Toronto with four games, as they sit in fourth place in the American League Central at 35-42.
Omaha continues be one of the elite teams in the Pacific Coast League. The Storm Chasers went 6-1 this past week. They now have an 18 game lead in the American Northern Division at 53-31. They continue their homestand with two more games against Albuquerque.
Since the Texas League All-Star break, NW Arkansas is just 1-2 (they lost a series to Corpus Christi). The Naturals are tied for second place in the North Division with a 4-5 second half record.
Wilmington had a very successful week, going 5-2. Problem is, everyone else in the Northern Division of the Carolina League is 5-5 in their last ten games. That puts the Blue Rocks tied for last place at 5-6. They continue their road trip with two more in Frederick before heading to Lynchburg.
Kane County went 4-3 this past week and sit in second place in the Midwest League’s Western Division at 6-4 (three teams are tied). The Cougars continue their series tonight at Peoria.
Hitters of the Week
Majors: The MLB All-Stars were announced on Sunday and shortstop Alcides Escobar‘s name was not on it (despite having better numbers than the three who made the team). He earns the award this week, as he went 9-for-20 (.450) with three doubles, a homerun, and six runs scored. He also walked three times.
Honorable Mention: Could it be? Is Eric Hosmer FINALLY breaking out? He started to show signs over the last week, as he went 11-for-26 (.423) with two doubles, a homerun, four runs scored, and three RBIs. He also stole two bases.
Minors: Clint Robinson, Omaha. He didn’t let his demotion back to the minors faze him. Over the week, he went 10-for-29 (.345) with four doubles, six runs scored, and six RBIs.
Pitchers of the Week
Majors: Luis Mendoza was dominant in his start this past weekend in the Royals lone win in Minnesota. He allowed just one run on five hits over eight innings. He did not walk a batter while striking out five.
Minors: Pitching was key this past week for teams having winning records. That means that I had a difficult time choosing just one pitcher.
Will Smith had two dominant starts this past week for Omaha. He picked up two wins and lowered his ERA to 3.81. In those two starts, he allowed just one unearned run on eight hits and one walk over 13.2 innings. He struck out 16.
Sugar Ray Marimon made his first two starts for Double-A NW Arkansas. Combined, he allowed just one run on six hits over 11.2 innings. He struck out eight.
Yordano Ventura continues his dominance in the Carolina League with Wilmington. In two starts this past week, he allowed two runs on seven hits and three walks over 12.2 innings. Despite striking out 17, he did not pick up a decision.
The reliever of the week goes to Cody Fassold of Kane County. In two appearances (five innings), he did not allow a hit or a run. Fassold did walk three while striking out five.