Story among 10 top prospect performers Friday
Rockies No. 11 prospect finishes a strong July with a grand slam for the Isotopes
Trevor Story helped couldn't save Triple-A Albuquerque from a 10-9 extra-innings defeat to Salt Lake, but he tried.
The hot-hitting Isotope cracked a grand slam -- his second of the season -- in a 1-for-5 night in the losing effort. He has eight homers and 21 RBIs in 25 games since he was promoted from Double-A New Britain.
Colorado's No. 11 prospect hit his previous slam on April 13 against Portland and he has 18 roundtrippers across two levels. Standing 6-foot-1 and weighing 180 pounds, the middle infielder has flashed power in previous seasons. He just tied his previous career high in homers (Class A Asheville, 2012) and is four RBIs away from tying his 65-RBI effort for Class A Advanced Modesto in 2013.
Story is hitting .278 since that July 1 promotion and has homered in two of his past three games. He also had a two-homer game on July 21 that came as part of a four-homers-in-four days stretch.
The rest of the 10 best performances from top Minor Leaguers
• Athletics No. 3 prospect Sean Manaea tossed his best game of the year three days after being traded from Kansas City. The lefty went seven shutout innings for Double-A Midland, giving up just three hits while striking out a season-high nine hitters and walking none. Manaea's performance helped the RockHounds take down Corpus Christi, 4-0. Drafted No. 34 overall by Kansas City in 2013, he came to the A's along with right-hander Aaron Brooks in exchange for versatile Ben Zobrist . Manaea posted a 1-1 record with a 3.69 ERA in seven combined starts across three levels for the Royals this year. Friday's outing marked his first win in three tries at the Double-A level and it was the longest he's gone in any game since August of last season.
• Brewers No. 16 prospect Tyler Wagner nearly posted a no-hitter for Class A Biloxi, but he settled for a one-hit shutout. The right-hander collected his second straight win for the Shuckers while striking out five and walking nine in seven innings. The performance marked his second career shutout and the second time he's held the opposition scoreless in 18 starts this season. While he didn't necessarily show it Friday, Wagner has the ability to rack up big strikeout numbers. He whiffed 11 Pensacola batters last Friday and sports a 91-to-32 K/BB line.
• D-backs No. 9 prospect Peter O'Brien homered for the third straight night. The Triple-A Reno outfielder has five taters since July 21 and 20 on the season. O'Brien has also hit in nine of his past 10 contests, including eight extra-base hits. A second-round pick by the Yankees in 2012, he was traded to Arizona last summer and has yet to see his first big league action. His recent onslaught could help him inch closer to his Major League debut. He's hitting .274 with 25 doubles, four triples and 74 RBIs for the Aces.
• Dodgers No. 5 prospect (No. 67 overall) Grant Holmes had Class A Great Lakes in position for an easy win, but the Loons blew a three-run lead in the eighth inning and fell, 4-3, to Lake County. The 6-foot-1 right-hander gave up six hits while striking out seven in six shutout innings and he still has not given up more than two earned runs in a start since allowing three on June 12. That's a stretch of eight outings, over which time Holmes' ERA has dipped from 3.68 to 2.59. He stands at 6-2 in 19 starts for the Loons.
• Orioles No. 29 prospect John Means tossed a seven-inning no-hitter for Class A Delmarva on Friday. He had not thrown a complete game in 29 previous starts, but he only needed 78 pitches -- including 57 strikes -- to set down 21 straight Charleston batters and win the first half of the teams' doubleheader, 4-0. The victory pushed Means' record to 8-7 and cut his ERA from 3.74 to 3.48 in 20 starts for the Shorebirds this season. An 11th-round Draft pick last summer, he has not allowed an earned run in his past 16 2/3 innings, going back to a win over Greensboro on July 19.
• Pirates No. 2 prospect (No. 28 overall) Austin Meadows cranked his fifth homer of the season for Class A Advanced Bradenton. The center fielder finished 1-for-3 with two RBIs and two runs as the Marauders defeated Tampa, 5-4. Meadows is batting .304/.362/.400 with 16 doubles, three triples, five bombs and 36 RBIs -- not to mention 17 stolen bases. He swiped a bag for the second night in a row Friday.
• Rangers No. 1 prospect (No. 8 overall) Joey Gallo has been hovering around the Mendoza line since he was demoted to Triple-A Round Rock on July 1, but the first baseman has not lacked power. Gallo went 2-for-3 with a walk and two solo homers in the Express' 10-3 loss to Omaha. That gives him a total of 20 fourbaggers and 60 RBIs across three levels -- including the big leagues -- this year. Drafted No. 39 by Texas in 2012, Gallo has already crushed 120 long balls in his four-year pro career, averaging 54.7 per 162 games.
• Rangers No. 2 prospect (No. 17 overall) Nomar Mazara led Double-A Frisco's offensive attack with a two-run homer, his 13th of the season. While the RoughRiders fell to San Antonio, 9-5, Mazara put the finishing touches on an excellent July. The outfielder had nine multi-hit games and three homers, bumping his 2015 line to .288/.356/.441 with 16 doubles, two triples, 13 blasts and 53 RBIs.
• Tigers No. 2 prospect Steven Moya went 2-for-4 with a double and a solo homer for Triple-A Toledo. The jack was his 15th of the season and he has 18 doubles along with 55 RBIs for the Mud Hens. Signed out of Puerto Rico in 2008, Moya got one chance at the big league level last season -- he went 3-for-8 in 11 games -- but has not yet seen action in the Majors this season. He's hit .231/.272/.414 across two levels this year.