Astros Minor League Recap June 25 – July 1: Fresno hits rough patch
The Houston Astros‘ Triple-A affiliate Fresno Grizzlies hit a rough patch, posting just a 2-5 record this week.
After a stretch of strong performances, the first-place Fresno Grizzlies hit the skids this week. The team went just 2-5 as some rough offensive performances combined with a few bad outings from the pitching staff. The team’s division lead has shrunk a bit, but still sits at a solid 5.5 games.
Rough Road Trip
The Grizzlies kicked off a four-game series at El Paso with a 7-5 loss on June 25. Josh James gave up six runs in 4.2 innings to take the loss. Kyle Tucker went 2-for-3 with a solo homer and a walk, while Nick Tanielu added a two-run shot.
Fresno dropped the second game of the series 9-5 on Tuesday. Brock Dykxhoorn gave up six runs in 2.1 innings for his first Triple-A loss. Tucker hit a solo blast, and Tanielu added a three-run homer. Tim Federowicz smacked two doubles and drove in a run.
The Grizzlies lost their third straight with a 5-4 decision on Wednesday. Cy Sneed struck out nine in five innings, but a five-run fourth inning sealed the loss. Jon Kemmer went 3-for-4, while Garrett Stubbs cranked a solo homer. Derek Fisher and Myles Straw each had two hits and a stolen base.
Fresno avoided the sweep with a 12-4 victory on Thursday. Mike Hauschild gave up two runs in 5.1 innings to earn the win. In his Triple-A debut, first baseman Taylor Jones went 3-for-5, smashing a three-run homer in his first at-bat. Tucker, Fisher and Kemmer also went deep.
The Slide Continues
The Grizzlies were shut out 4-0 on Friday in the opener of a five-game series at Sacramento. Trent Thornton struck out 11 in six innings, but surrendered four runs. Straw went 2-for-4, including a double, which was the team’s only extra-base hit in the game. San Francisco’s Johnny Cueto, on a rehab assignment, started the game for Sacramento.
Fresno bounced back with a 4-3 win on Saturday. Rogelio Armenteros improved to 6-0, giving up three runs in five innings with seven strikeouts. J.D. Davis went deep twice, driving in three. Tucker’s 18-game hitting streak ended with his 0-for-4 performance.
The Grizzly bats were stymied again in a 3-1 loss on Sunday. James struck out 12 and allowed just one hit in five innings. He also walked four and surrendered all three runs. Straw went 4-for-5 with a stolen base, while Kemmer went 3-for-3 with a walk.
Player of the Week: Kyle Tucker
Despite ending the week with a pair of hitless performances (he was ejected from Sunday’s game), Tucker still put together a strong stretch. He went deep three times in a four-game span and extended his hitting streak to 18 games.
He’s currently third in the Pacific Coast League in RBIs and total bases and has brought his batting average up to .311 on the season. Barring injury, it seems likely we’ll see him in Houston later this season.
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The Grizzlies play two more games at Sacramento to close out the road trip. They’ll return home to open a five-game series against Las Vegas heading into the All-Star break. Fresno sits at 48-34 on the season, 5.5 games ahead of second-place Tacoma.