Here are Thursday's best prospect performers

September 13th, 2019

Here are the best performances by players on team Top 30 Prospects lists from across the Minor Leagues on Thursday:

Daniel Johnson, OF, (Indians No. 16)
Johnson hit a home run and stole a base as the Triple-A Columbus Clippers defeated Durham to win the International League Governors' Cup finals.

Johnson, a 2016 Draft pick out of New Mexico State, hit 19 home runs during the regular season and stole 12 bases, playing across two levels of the Minors. He finished the season batting .290 but did strike out 118 times in 123 games.

The home run was the first of his postseason career, and it started a three-run seventh inning that would provide the Clippers more than enough of a lead to earn the International League title, winning by a final score of 6-1. Indians prospect stats»

Clarke Schmidt, RHP; Michael King, RHP, (Yankees Nos. 5 and 20)
Behind strong pitching performances from Schmidt and King and Hoy Jun Park's late baserunning heroics, the Trenton Thunder edged Bowie, 2-1, to improve to 2-1 in the best-of-five Eastern League Championship Series.

Eastern League MVP Chris Gittens homered to right-center field to open the second inning and put Trenton on the board, and Park would score on a straight steal of home in the seventh for what proved to be the winning run.

Schmidt cruised through the first four innings but allowed a two-run single in the fifth before being lifted for a reliever.

King took over in the sixth inning and dominated the rest of the way, striking out five batters over four scoreless innings to earn the win. He issued two walks and allowed just one hit. Yankees prospect stats »

Ricky Vanasco, RHP, (Rangers No. 25)
The Hickory Crawdads staved off elimination in the South Atlantic League Championship Series on Thursday with a 5-1 victory over Lexington in Game 3 of the best-of-five finals.

Hickory struck first via Tyreque Reed’s RBI single in the third inning, and center fielder Miguel Aparicio added to the Crawdads’ lead with a two-run home run in the fourth. Reed hit a solo homer in the seventh, and then drove in his third run of the game in the ninth via a sacrifice fly to finish 3-for-4.

Vanasco paced the Crawdads on the mound by tossing 3 2/3 hitless frames. The 20-year-old right-hander was cruising before experiencing control problems in the fourth inning, when he issued three straight walks to load the bases after recording two quick outs. The Legends were unable to capitalize on the scoring opportunity, though, and Vanasco finished his outing with four walks and six strikeouts. Rangers prospect stats »

Alex Wells, LHP, (Orioles No. 20)
Wells turned in a quality start in for Double-A Bowie on Wednesday, though it wasn’t enough to keep the Baysox from falling to Trenton, 2-1, in Game 3 of the Eastern League Championship Series.

Wells allowed two runs and scattered six hits over seven innings. The Australian-born southpaw did not issue a walk and struck out eight batters, matching his season-high total, while throwing 69 of 90 pitches for strikes. During the regular season, the 22-year-old ranked among the Eastern League leaders with a 2.95 ERA (sixth) and a 1.07 WHIP (fifth).

The Thunder tagged Wells for three consecutive singles to open the seventh inning, but the left-hander battled back to record three straight strikeouts -- but not before Hoy Jun Park caught him and the rest of the Baysox napping with a straight steal of home.

Cedric Mullins scored Bowie’s lone run and also collected two of the team’s three hits in the loss.

Bowie trails Trenton in the series, 2-1, and will need to win Game 4 on Friday to stay alive in the best-of-five finals. Orioles prospect stats »

Nivaldo Rodriguez, RHP, (Astros No. 26)
Rodriguez helped lead Class A Advanced Fayetteville to a big 2-1 win in Game 3 of the best-of-five Carolina League Championship. The Woodpeckers now hold a 2-1 series lead and are scheduled to host both Games 4 and 5.

The Blue Rocks struck first with a run in the top of the second, but Fayetteville bounced back in the sixth via a two-run double from David Hensley.

Rodriguez, who pitched to a 2.40 ERA across two levels this season, threw 55 of his 82 pitches for strikes across six innings of one-run ball. The 22-year-old right-hander also struck out seven and yielded just a trio of hits. Astros prospect stats »

Kris Bubic, LHP, (Royals No. 6)
Class A Lexington lost for the first time in South Atlantic League Championship Series on Thursday, dropping Game 3 of the best-of-five finals to Hickory, 5-1.

Bubic was solid on the mound and struck out eight over 5 2/3 innings. However, he also gave up a pair of runs -- via a two-run double in the sixth -- and that was the only offense the Woodpeckers needed in Thursday’s pitchers' duel. MJ Melendez (No. 9) provided the Blue Rocks' offense with a run-scoring single in the second inning.

Wilmington trails the best-of-five series, 2-1, with Games 4 and 5 scheduled for Friday and Saturday in Fayetteville. Royals prospect stats »