Astros Minors Report April 10-16: Grizzlies struggle on road trip

Mar 17, 2017; Fort Myers, FL, USA; Houston Astros relief pitcher Francis Martes (79) against the Boston Red Sox at JetBlue Park. The Astros won 6-2. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 17, 2017; Fort Myers, FL, USA; Houston Astros relief pitcher Francis Martes (79) against the Boston Red Sox at JetBlue Park. The Astros won 6-2. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Astros’ Triple-A team, the Fresno Grizzlies, struggled over the past week with a 2-5 record.

After opening the season 3-1, the Astros Triple-A Fresno Grizzlies found tough sledding this week, slumping to a 2-5 record. After finishing the opening homestand on April 10, they hit the road for a seven-game trip to Las Vegas and Salt Lake.

Game Recaps

The Grizzlies fell in the April 10 series finale against Reno by a score of 5-2. Francis Martes threw five shutout innings, while Teoscar Hernandez and Tyler White each hit solo homers. Reliever Reymin Guduan coughed up five runs in the seventh inning to take the loss.

Tuesday’s road trip opener was one to forget as the Grizzlies fell to Las Vegas 21-6. Position players Andrew Aplin, White and Reid Brignac pitched for Fresno after starter David Martinez gave up seven runs (six earned) in 4.1 innings. A.J. Reed drove in two runs while Tony Kemp and Preston Tucker had two hits apiece.

The Grizzlies bounced back on Wednesday, defeating Las Vegas 7-4. Keegan Yuhl earned the win, giving up two runs in six innings, and James Hoyt earned his first save. Tucker and Brignac homered, while Reed and Juan Centeno each had three hits.

Fresno broke out the bats Thursday, winning 12-4 at Las Vegas. Brady Rodgers moved to 2-0 on the year by giving up one run in six innings. Each Fresno starter reached base safely at least twice. Brignac and Hernandez drove in three runs apiece.

The Grizzlies settled for a split of the four-game series against Las Vegas, falling 4-2 on Friday. Edison Frias gave up four runs (three earned) in five innings to take the loss. Brignac had two hits and a RBI while White was 3-for-4.

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Fresno opened a three-game series at Salt Lake on Saturday, falling 6-5 in 10 innings. Reliever Jordan Jankowski gave up a single and three consecutive walks to start the bottom of the 10th, taking the loss. Starter Brian Holmes gave up three runs in four innings while Hernandez and Colin Moran homered.

The Grizzlies allowed another walk-off on Sunday, falling 5-4. Guduan gave up three runs in the bottom of the ninth, aided by an errant pickoff throw. Martes threw 4.1 shutout innings, giving up two hits, six walks and striking out seven. Tucker had three hits and a RBI.

Players of the Week: Tyler White and Francis Martes

It was a tough choice on Player of the Week, so I’m giving both guys the distinction. White hit safely in all seven games this week, including four multi-hit games. He also started games at second base, third base, and shortstop this week. White even pitched — though unsuccessfully — in the blowout loss on Tuesday.

Martes made two starts, totaling 9.1 innings of scoreless baseball. He struck out ten but also issued nine walks, so he will need to get his command settled if he wants to join the big league club this year. Still, the results are encouraging.

Next: Astros Minor League Spotlight: Grizzlies Hitters Doing Work

What’s Next

The Grizzlies will try to avoid a sweep as they finish off the series at Salt Lake on Monday. They will then return home for an eight-game homestand — four against Las Vegas and four against Salt Lake.

**Statistics courtesy of MiLB.com**

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