Here's MLB Pipeline's roundup of the top prospect performances in the Minor Leagues on Wednesday.The least-known prospect acquired by the Marlins in the January blockbuster trade that sent Christian Yelich to Milwaukee, Jordan Yamamoto is doing his best to shed that distinction this season in the Florida State League.:: Complete
Here's MLB Pipeline's roundup of the top prospect performances in the Minor Leagues on Wednesday.
The least-known prospect acquired by the Marlins in the January blockbuster trade that sent Christian Yelich to Milwaukee, Jordan Yamamoto is doing his best to shed that distinction this season in the Florida State League.
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Yamamoto, Miami's No. 20 prospect, set a career high with 13 strikeouts and allowed just two hits, both singles, over seven scoreless innings as Class A Advanced Jupiter blanked Florida, 2-0. He did not issue a walk in the outing, ultimately facing two over the minimum and throwing 64 of 89 pitches for strikes.
Dealt to Miami during the offseason, along with outfielders Lewis Brinson and Monte Harrison and second baseman Isan Diaz, Yamamoto began the season on the disabled list with a right shoulder impingement but has been on a roll since making his Marlins organizational debut on May 27. The 22-year-old right-hander is 3-0 in five starts, with a 1.63 ERA, 0.94 WHIP and 33-to-6 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 27 2/3 innings.
Selected by Milwaukee in the 12th round of the 2014 Draft out of the Hawaii prep ranks, Yamamoto broke out in earnest last year, when he logged 111 innings for Class A Advanced Carolina -- his second straight campaign with at least 100 innings pitched after working a career-high 134 1/3 frames in 2016 -- struck out 113 and sported a 2.51 ERA that topped Carolina League pitchers reaching 100 innings.
Yamamoto was especially good down the stretch, too, as he allowed just one earned run over his final five starts and 33 innings -- a trend that has followed the young right-hander into 2018.
The rest of the best performances from top prospects Wednesday
• No. 12 overall prospect Mitch Keller (Pirates' No. 1) turned in his fourth straight quality start as he pitched Double-A Altoona past Richmond in Game 1 of a doubleheader to record his eighth win in 13 starts. The 22-year-old righty gave up one unearned run on four hits and one walk while striking out four and racking up 10 ground-ball outs. He's now completed at least six innings in seven straight starts, during which he's 5-0. Overall, Keller ranks among the Eastern League leaders with his eight wins (tied, first), a 3.00 ERA (seventh) and 78 1/3 innings pitched (fourth).
• No. 43 overall prospect Ian Anderson (Braves' No. 5) was outdueled by Yamamoto, but still impressed plenty by tossing six innings of two-run ball with a season-best eight strikeouts in a quality start for Class A Advanced Florida. Anderson permitted seven hits (six singles) and one walk and flooded the strike zone with 63 of his 92 offerings. The 20-year-old righty sports a 3.51 ERA through 13 starts on the season, with 70 strikeouts and just two home runs allowed in 59 innings.
• No. 57 overall prospect Shane Baz (Pirates' No. 3) worked a career-high five scoreless innings to earn the win in his season debut for Rookie-level Bristol. The 2017 first-rounder (No. 12 overall) gave up four hits while compiling one strikeout and three walks in the outing. Baz, a 19-year-old righty, recorded eight ground-ball outs and threw 45 of his 80 pitches for strikes. Outfielder Conner Uselton (No. 16), selected with the No. 72 pick in the '17 Draft, went 2-for-3 with a double, two RBIs and two runs scored.
• No. 92 overall prospect Sean Murphy (A's No. 6) went 3-for-3 and reached base in all five of his plate appearances in Double-A Midland's loss to Frisco. Two of those hits were doubles, giving Murphy a Texas League-leading 24 two-baggers on the season, and he also reached twice via walks and scored two runs. The 23-year-old is proving this season that he's one of the Minor's top catching prospects, as the performance gives Murphy a .315/.367/.539 batting line with 33 extra-base hits through 56 games.
• Blue Jays No. 7 prospect Eric Pardinho took the loss but impressed in his professional debut, tossing four innings of one-run ball with five strikeouts and seven ground-ball outs for Rookie-level Bluefield. The 17-year-old right-hander threw 39 of his 65 pitches for strikes in the outing, allowing two hits and two walks. Signed for $1.4 million out of Brazil at the outset of the 2017-18 international period, Pardinho boasts a three-pitch mix that includes a plus fastball-curveball pairing and a promising changeup. That mature arsenal, along with his advanced feel for using it, is why Toronto felt comfortable jumping him straight to the Appalachian League for his Minor League debut.
• Dodgers No. 24 prospectDrew Jackson hit a pair of two-run homers as he powered Double-A Tulsa past Springfield, 7-1, with his first career multi-homer game. The 24-year-old middle infielder has gone deep seven times in 54 games this year after homering just once in 29 Double-A contests in 2017.Will Smith (No. 8) also homered in the victory, his eighth this season. Both players finished 2-for-4 and scored two runs.
MILB Video - Title: Watch: Jackson homers twice - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2179246083
• Padres No. 11 prospect Jacob Nix was a tough-luck loser despite tossing seven innings of one-run ball with a season-best eight strikeouts for Double-A San Antonio in a 1-0 loss against Corpus Christi. The 22-year-old right-hander -- making his fifth start of 2018 after beginning the season on the disabled list -- allowed four hits, did not issue a walk and induced eight ground-ball outs. He's pitched to a 1.27 ERA and 0.71 WHIP, with 20 strikeouts, six walks and a .147 BAA, in 28 1/3 innings.
• Pirates No. 7 prospect Kevin Newman and Kevin Kramer (No. 8) combined for five hits and four RBIs in Triple-A Indianapolis' 5-3 win over Norfolk. Newman paced the offense out of the leadoff spot by going 3-for-5 with a double and two RBIs. It was his second three-hit performance during his seven-game hitting streak. Kramer, meanwhile, finished the game 2-for-4 after hitting his 16th double and a two-run homer, his 11th of the season and third in the last six games.
• Pirates No. 11 prospectLuis Escobar posted six scoreless innings of two-hit ball in Class A Advanced Bradenton's 9-1 win over Clearwater. The 22-year-old righty issued two walks and struck out six while finding the strike zone with 51 of his 77 pitches. The outing was a step back in the right direction for Escobar after he entered the day having allowed nine earned runs and eight walks in eight innings between his previous two starts.
MILB Video - Title: Escobar's sixth strikeout - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2179157383
Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero.