Here's MLB Pipeline's roundup of the top prospect performances in the Minor Leagues on Friday.
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Francisco Mejia's first home run as a member of the Padres organization both put his team on the board and proved the difference as Triple-A El Paso edged New Orleans, 5-4.
Mejia, the Padres' No. 3 prospect (No. 21 overall), connected on a solo home run in his first at-bat, turning on an 0-2 pitch and depositing over the wall down the right-field line. He finished the game 1-for-3 at the plate, also reaching once via a hit-by-pitch.
The homer was Mejia's eighth of the season and his first in eight games since the Padres acquired him in exchange for reliever Brad Hand and Adam Cimber on July 19. He's posted a .308 average and recorded at least one hit in six of those eight contests.
What's more, the 22-year-old Mejia has now started seven times behind the plate for the Chihuahuas -- a trend that highlights the Padres' desire to have him remain at the position long term. But as one of the more advanced and Major League-ready hitters in the Minors, Mejia, a switch-hitter, could still force his way into the lineup at other positions, especially with glove-first backstop Austin Hedges starting in San Diego.
MILB Video - Title: Mejia goes deep - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2344795983
The rest of the best performances from top prospects Friday
• No. 3 overall prospect Eloy Jimenez (White Sox No. 1) is batting .387 through 28 games with Triple-A Charlotte after going 3-for-5 with a double and an RBI. The 21-year-old slugger is slashing a robust .341/.390/.605 this season, with 18 homers, 24 doubles and 60 RBIs in 81 games.
MILB Video - Title: Jimenez drives home a run - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2343951483
• No. 24 overall prospect Kyle Wright (Braves' No. 2) was unhittable for 5 2/3 innings as he recorded the win in his debut for Triple-A Gwinnett. The 22-year-old righty actually cruised through the first five innings --retiring 15 of 16 batters -- only to issue a pair of runs on four walks before departing with two outs in the sixth. He struck out five batters and generated another nine outs on the ground.
MILB Video - Title: Wright strikes out the side - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2343801583
• Speaking of debuts, No. 31 overall prospect Jesus Sanchez (Rays' No. 3) reached base four times in his first game with Double-A Montgomery. He put his team on the board with an RBI double in his first at-bat before finishing 2-for-3 with two walks. The 20-year-old outfielder received a promotion to the Southern League after slashing .301/.331/.462 with 10 homers, 24 doubles and 64 RBIs over 90 games with Class A Advanced Charlotte.
• No. 63 overall prospect Peter Alonso (Mets' No. 2) swatted three extra-base hits including his 25th home run to help power Triple-A Las Vegas past Omaha, 12-11. His other two hits were doubles, as Alonso finished the game 3-for-6 with three RBIs and two runs scored. He's now tallied 21 two-baggers as well as 93 RBIs in 105 games this season across two levels.
MILB Video - Title: Alonso goes yard - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=2344937383
• No. 79 overall prospect Brusdar Graterol (Twins' No. 4) used his triple-digit fastball to rack up five strikeouts over six innings in a win for Class A Advanced Fort Myers. He allowed one unearned run on five hits, did not issue a walk and pounded the zone with 63 of 90 pitches in the outing. The 19-year-old fire-baller has completed at least five innings in five straight starts after lasting just three innings in his Miracle debut.
• Brewers No. 26 prospect Chad McClanahan and Je'Von Ward (No. 27) both had big nights offensively for Rookie-level Helena. McClanahan plated three runs, two on his eighth home run, while Ward tallied three doubles, scored four runs and walked once part of a 4-for-5 performance. They're batting .297 and .288 this season, respectively.
• Cardinals No. 3 prospect Nolan Gorman homered for a second straight game to help power Rookie-level Johnson City past Greenville, 9-7. Gorman's home run, a third-inning solo shot, gives him 10 through his first 32 career games, and he's shown that consistent power while slashing .325/.424/.659 with 21 walks.
• D-backs No. 3 prospectTaylor Widener was sharp in a no-decision for Double-A Jackson. The 23-year-old righty tossed six scoreless innings, mixing three hits with a walk and seven strikeouts. Among qualified Southern League hurlers, Widener ranks first in strikeouts (142), second in ERA (2.64) and second in WHIP (1.01). Opposing hitters, meanwhile, are batting just .192 against him.
• Orioles No. 5 prospect Grayson Rodriguez posted three more scoreless frames in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League as he extended his career-opening scoreless streak to 12 innings. The 2018 first-rounder allowed just one hit and struck out three in his longest outing as a professional.
• Making his organizational debut, Rangers No. 7 prospectTaylor Hearn tossed 5 1/3 innings of one-run ball for Double-A Frisco to earn the win. He allowed three hits (including a solo homer) and struck out eight while throwing 60 of 89 pitches for strikes. The 23-year-old lefty had pitched to a 3.12 ERA with a .198 BAA and 107 strikeouts in 104 innings (19 starts) for Double-A Altoona before joining the Rangers in the Trade Deadline deal that sent reliever Keone Kela to Pittsburgh.