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Blue Jays Minor League Report: Vancouver throw a 7-inning no-hitter, Orelvis Martinez hits his 16th homer, and more!

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Photo credit:Mark Steffens - Fotoguy
Ryley Delaney
1 year ago
This Minor League report is going to be a long one.
The Blue Jays affiliate teams played eight games on Saturday, thanks in part to two double headers. They won four and lost four, and a rare occurrence happened in the last game of the night. Let’s cover all eight games, starting with Triple-A.
As I write this, all but one of the games are complete on Sunday evening. The numbers are up to date according to Fangraphs.

Triple-A:

The Buffalo Bisons fell 7-5 to the Toledo Mud Hens, bringing their record to 28-34. They still command the series 3-2, with a chance to outright win it on Sunday (no spoilers).

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Rafael Lantigua

Rafael Lantigua is having a great season, and this continued on Saturday evening. He went 2-4 with a walk and two RBIs, both of which came on a double that tied the game.
As of Sunday evening, the 25-year-old utility player is slashing .305/.451/.483 with four homers in 226 plate appearances. He also has a higher BB% (20.8%) than K% (15%) for a 143 wRC+.
Lantigua is always a player that ranks towards the end of my Top Blue Jay Prospect Lists, but he’s going to get a significant bump this season.

Players worth mentioning:

Rob Brantly had a good game, going 3-4. For the season, the veteran catcher is slashing .272/.390/.352 in 154 plate appearances.
L.J. Talley started the season off slow, but had a 3-4 game with two RBIs. He brought in their first run in the top of the seventh, as well as the third run prior to Lantigua’s double. The 26-year-old is slashing .226/.346/.330 with two homers in 127 plate appearances. It’s worth noting he started off the 2022 pretty cold as well.
Wynton Bernard went 2-4 on Saturday evening with an RBI. He brought in the second run in the top of the ninth, hitting Buffalo’s second double that inning. This season, the 32-year-old is slashing .277/.361/.399 with two homers in 216 plate appearances.

Double-A, Game 1:

In the first game of the double-header, the New Hampshire Fisher Cats defeated the Harrisburg Senators 6-1, which brought their record to 29-25 at the time.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Nick Fraze

The 25-year-old righty relieved Luis Quiñones, who finished with a line of 3.1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 4 K.
This outing brought his Double-A ERA down to 1.65, while his 4.82 FIP remains relatively high. He also has a 24.2 K% and a 10.6 BB%, the latter being a career-high.
Fraze is a control over power pitcher, so I’d expect this to drop as the season continues.

Players worth mentioning:

Luis Quiñones had a good game, pitching to a line of 3.2 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 6 K. The 25-year-old righty has seemingly moved into a bulk reliever role, and has posted a 3.24 ERA and a 3.56 FIP in 33.1 innings pitched with the Fisher Cats this season. His BB% of 10.5% has also dropped from 15.9% the season prior.
Leo Jimenez’s big problem prior to last season was the lack of pop in his bat. On Saturday, he hit his third homer of the season and the second in this series. The 22-year-old shortstop is on the 40-man roster, and is slashing .291/.355/.417 with those three homers in 141 plate appearances.
Damiano Palmegiani hit his eighth home run of the season in this game, which is fourth in the organization. He’s slashing .283/.387/.483 in 212 plate appearances, with a relatively low 21.7 K% and a solid 12.7 BB% for a 137 wRC+.If he continues, it won’t be too long before he’s in Buffalo.

Double-A, Game 2:

The New Hampshire Fisher Cats fell 7-2 in the second game of the double header. This brings their record to 29-26 for the season.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Orelvis Martinez

Look, a 1-3 performance with two RBIs and a walk wasn’t enough to get Orelvis on the players worth mentioning in the last game, but he won the player of the game in this one.
Why? Well, the 21-year-old went 1-2 with his organization-leading 16th homer, while also walking in one of the plate appearances.
That walk was also quite impressive, as he took a BIG DADDY HACK for his first strike, before doing an excellent job reading the pitch.
Like Palmegiani, it may only be a matter of time before Martinez finds himself in Triple-A.

Players worth mentioning:

Sebastian Espino had another solid game on Saturday, going 2-3 with a strikeout in his three plate appearances. The 23-year-old is now slashing .223/.305/.350 with three homers in 120 plate appearances in the season.
Gabriel Ponce was solid in relief for the Fisher Cats, owning a line of 2 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K. This season, he has a 3.48 ERA and a 3.25 FIP in 20.2 innings pitched, along with a 27.9 K% and an 11.6 BB%.

High-A, Game 1:

The Vancouver Canadians defeated the Everett AquaSox 8-2 in the first game of the double header, which brought their record to 29-25.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Kevin Miranda

The 24-year-old Panamanian right-handed pitcher was signed as an undrafted free agent after the 2022 draft.
In the first game of the double header, he had a line of 4 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, bringing his High-A ERA to 1.50, while he has a 3.08 FIP.
Miranda has a nasty changeup, but only has a 15.7 K% with Vancouver, and a 23.3 K% with Dunedin. Where he excels however, is with his low BB% which currently sits at 3.9% in Vancouver and 3.3% in Dunedin.
The right-handed pitcher may reach as high as Double-A this season if he continues to pitch well.

Players worth mentioning:

Peyton Williams arguably could have won the Player of the Game as well, as he hit his ninth home run of the season, and his second at the High-A. He went 1-4 with three RBIs and two strikeouts.
Alan Roden continues to play well for the Vancouver Canadians. In this game, he went 2-4 with a walk and two RBIs. He also hit his 18th double of the season. He’ll be in this article again.
Gabriel Martinez was the other player that hit a double in this game, which was his seventh of the season. He also walked twice in his four plate appearances.

High-A, Game 2:

For the third season in a row, a Blue Jays affiliate team threw a no hitter, with Devereaux Harrison and Matt Svanson doing so in the 7 innings. 
Last season for the Dunedin Blue Jays, Kendry Rojas, Cooper Benson, Sam Ryan, and Ian Churchill threw a combined 9 innings no hitter. While Trent Palmer threw a 7-inning no hitter for the Dunedin Blue Jays in 2021.
The Canadians shutout the AquaSox 2-0.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Devereaux Harrison

It was a little bit surprising to me that Devereaux Harrison has been stretched out as a starter for the past few weeks. He only started two games in the 42 he appeared in during his college days.
The Blue Jays development staff must’ve found something though, as he had a line of 6 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 8 K, throwing all but one inning of the no-hitter.
As a starter, the 22-year-old righty has a 1.35 ERA and a 3.82 FIP in 20 innings pitched. He also has a 25 K% and a 9.7 BB%.

Players worth mentioning:

Matt Svanson is the Canadians’ defacto closer as Mason Fluharty, Connor Cooke, and T.J. Brock have moved on to New Hampshire. He did his job on Saturday night, posting a line of 1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K to close out the no hitter. With Vancouver, he has a 2.45 ERA and a 2.55 FIP in 14.2 innings pitched, along with a 32.8 K% and 8.6 BB%.
Alan Roden is back for this game as well, and for good reason. He went 2-3 with a walk and is slashing .304/.422/.462 with three homers with a higher BB% than K%. It’s only a matter of time before he joins Double-A.
Gabriel Martinez is also back for this game, which was the better of the two for him. In his three plate appearances, he had two hits and a strikeout. For the season, he’s slashing .246/.312/.368 with four homers in 190 plate appearances.

Single-A:

The Dunedin Blue Jays fell 7-6 to the Bradenton Marauders, with a late comeback falling short. Their season record falls to 27-29.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Ryan McCarty

Ryan McCarty was an undrafted free agent out of a Division III school, but is an interesting player to keep an eye on.
On Saturday, he went 2-4 with two RBIs, hitting his fourth homer of the season and his 10th double.
Heading into Sunday, he was slashing .235/.323/.417 with those four homers in 156 plate appearances. He can take a walk (10.9 BB%), while he does a solid job of avoiding strikeouts (23.1 K%).
He’ll also be tomorrow’s player of the game.

Players worth mentioning:

Jeffrey Wehler’s contract was purchased from the Staten Island Ferry Hawks of the Atlantic League. The infielder made his affiliate debut on Saturday, going 1-4 with a single and a stolen base. He also scored a run on a sac fly.
Lazaro Estrada continues to pitch in Single-A, and I have no idea why. On Saturday, he had a line of 3 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K, which helped stabalize their bullpen. For the season, the 24-year-old  has a 3 ERA and a 2.08 FIP in 27 innings pitched, along with a 34.2 K% and a 6.3 BB%. He needs to be tested in High-A soon, the movement on those pitches is too overpowering for FSL players.

Florida Complex League:

The FCL Jays fell to the FCL Yankees 10-2, bringing their season record to 1-4.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Victor Arias

On yesterday’s Minor League report, we looked at the 19-year-old Victor Arias, and how for the past two seasons in the Dominican Summer League, he had a wRC+ above 100.
I knew full well when writing Friday’s report that Arias went deep on Saturday for his third professional home run. Arias also walked twice and struck out once, giving him a pretty successful day at the plate.
For the season, he has a .167/.286/.500 slash line with an elevated 42.9 K% in his 14 plate appearances. He’ll have to cut down his K% to below 30% as it was the past two seasons. Still, he’s been good to start the season.

Players worth mentioning:

Luis Garcia was one of the first players I paid attention to in the rookie leagues when I first started covering minor league players. That season, he had a .307/.375/.380 slashine with no homers. He tapered off last season, but has had an alright start to his 2023, helped by going 2-3 with a strikeout on Saturday afternoon.
Joey Murray made his first rehab appearance since Tommy John surgery which he received last May. Results in rehab appearances aren’t too important, but the fact he has returned about 13 months after the surgery is quite impressive. Last season with the Double-A Fisher Cats, he had a 7.84 ERA and a 6.03 FIP in 20.2 innings. The 26-year-old’s career has been hampered by injuries since 2019, so hopefully he remains in good health the rest of the season.
Anders Tolhurst is another rehabbing pitcher who pitched Saturday for the FCL Jays. He had a line of 2 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K. The 23-year-old righty was selected in the 2019 draft, but has only pitched 15.1 innings in affiliate ball and an extra 15.1 innings in the Arizona Fall League.

Dominican Summer League:

The Dominican Summer League Blue Jays once again came from behind, scoring three runs in the top of the ninth to beat the DSL White Sox 9-8. This brings their record to 3-2.

The Blue Jays Nation’s Player of the Game: Jonathan Bautista

Bautista was signed during the 2022 international free agency period.
He had a rough 2022 season, slashing just .111/.263/.247 with two homers in 99 plate appearances with a 51.5 K% and a 15.2 BB%.
He still has an extremely high 55.6 K% in only nine plate appearances this season, but he had a step in the right direction with his first home run of the season on Saturday. He went 2-5 with an additional single.

Players worth mentioning:

Maykel Minoso has been mentioned a couple of times in the minor league report, which is a good sign. On Saturday, he went 2-4 with two singles and a walk. The 17-year-old catcher is still pretty young for the level, but he’s had a much better start to his season than in 2022, dropping his K% in 17 plate appearances to 5.9%, compared to a 33.3% in 39 plate appearances.
David Guzmán was signed to an IFA deal in 2023, and he’s been absolutely fantastic early in the DSL season. The outfielder went 0-2 on Saturday, but reached base three times on three walks, scoring each time. It’s only been 22 plate apeprances, but he already has a 27.3 BB% compared to a 4.5 K%, along with a homer. He could be a player to keep an eye on.
Juanmi Vasquez wasn’t signed to an international free agency deal when it opened in January 2022, but rather signed in August 2022. On Saturday, he had a line of 3 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K. In his 8.2 innings pitched as a professional, he has yet to give up a run, and has walked just one while striking out 10. He’s 19-years-old, so he’s a little bit older for the level.

Setting up for Monday’s Minor League Report:

As I write this, the Vancouver Canadians game has already kicked off, while the other three affiliate games have concluded. The FCL Jays and the DSL Jays don’t play on Sundays and Wednesdays.
On Monday, the full-season affiliates (Buffalo, New Hampshire, Vancouver, and Dunedin) are off, while the rookie ball teams play.
So instead of writing about four games on Monday and two on Tuesday, I’ll combine the two days for a full report, while giving myself a day off on Tuesday.
Stay tuned for tomorrow’s report!
As always, you can follow me on Twitter and Instagram @Brennan_L_D.

ARTICLE PRESENTED BY BETANO

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