Friday's top prospect performers

June 19th, 2021

Here's a look at Friday's top Minor League performers from each team's Top 30 Prospects list:

Tigers: Spencer Torkelson, 3B (MLB No. 3), Double-A Erie
After starting his Double-A experience 2-for-11 with two singles, Torkelson powered Erie to a 4-2 victory over Altoona with some late-game heroics. The 2019 No. 1 overall pick smacked his first Double-A homer, a two-run blast with two outs in the bottom of the eighth on a two-strike count to put Erie up 4-2. Torkelson finished 2-for-4, adding a double to his final line. On the season, the Tigers top prospect is slashing .306/.430/.565 with a .995 OPS, six long balls and 32 RBIs. Tigers prospect stats »

Padres: CJ Abrams, SS (MLB No. 8), Double-A San Antonio
Abrams, the sixth overall pick from the 2019 Draft, turned in his first four-hit game of the season as San Antonio topped Northwest Arkansas, 14-6. Abrams put several of his tools on display as he finished 4-for-5 with two doubles, four RBIs, two runs scored and a stolen base. The 20-year-old entered the 2021 season having played just two games above Rookie ball, but the jump up to Double-A doesn’t appear to be hampering him much, as he’s hitting .307 through 33 contests. Padres prospects stats »

Indians: Nolan Jones, 1B (MLB No. 27), Triple-A Columbus
George Valera, OF (MLB No. 90), High-A Lake County

It has been a tough start to the season for one of the most powerful prospects in the Minor Leagues, but Nolan Jones is starting to right the ship. The 6-foot-4 slugger swatted his third homer of the year, a three-run blast, as part of a 2-for-4 effort at the plate. Jones added a single and two runs scored to his line in the Clippers' 7-5 win over Toledo. After hitting just one big fly over the first 33 games of the year, Jones is starting to regain his stroke with two over his last five games, as well as six hits, seven RBIs and four walks over that span.

Valera has similarly struggled to get it going this season, and landing on the injured list with a right oblique strain for the majority of May. Since returning, the 20-year-old has shown flashes of the power he showed in 2019. On Friday, Valera clubbed his second dinger in a 3-for-5 day at the dish, adding a double, three RBIs and two runs scored in his first three-hit performance of the season. On the year, the Queens, N.Y., native is slashing .244/.360/.463 with a .823 OPS. Indians prospect stats »

A's: Tyler Soderstrom, C (MLB No. 84), Low-A Stockton
Soderstrom brought his homer run total to seven with his second career two-homer game. The 2020 first-round pick (26th overall) hit a three-run homer in the fourth and a solo blast in the ninth on his way to a 3-for-6, five-RBI night. Both the two homers and five RBIs matched career highs for the 19-year-old, who is hitting .296 through the first 38 games of his professional career. A's prospects stats »

Red Sox: Jarren Duran, OF (MLB No. 89), Triple-A Worcester
Brayan Bello, RHP (No. 18), Double-A Portland

The Red Sox top outfield prospect has been lighting up Triple-A pitching all season, and Friday night was no different. Duran smacked his 11th homer of the year in a 3-for-4 effort for Worcester in its 5-1 victory over Lehigh Valley. The 2018 seventh-rounder added two RBIs and a run scored in a productive day at the plate. Hitting out of his customary leadoff spot, Duran’s opposite-field dinger came in the fifth with one on to break a 1-1 tie for the WooSox. On the season, Duran is slashing .277/.363/.613 for an OPS of .979, and has slugged six homers in his last 12 contests.

Bello was dominant on the bump in Portland’s 4-1 win over Binghamton. Over 5 1/3 frames, the right-hander scattered one run, two hits, and one walk while punching out a season-high tying 10 batters, a mark he has reached three times. Over eight starts, Bello is yet to allow more than two earned runs, which is reflected by his 1.93 ERA. The 22-year-old has shown elite strikeout prowess, with 67 strikeouts in 46.1 innings, a K/9 of 13.1. Red Sox prospect stats »

Braves: Braden Shewmake, SS (No. 4), Double-A Mississippi
Spencer Strider, RHP (No. 20), High-A Rome

Shewmake turned in his first three-hit performance of the season and hit his fourth homer of the year in the process. The 23-year-old, a first-round pick from the 2019 Draft, came through with an RBI double in the second and a solo homer in the third on his way to a 3-for-4, two-RBI night. Shewmake has struggled a bit offensively this season and is hitting .153 through 32 games after batting an even .300 through 65 games in his 2019 professional debut.

Strider turned in the best start of his first professional season in Rome’s extra-innings 7-5 loss against Bowling Green on Friday. The 2020 fourth-rounder tossed a career-high six innings of one-run ball with one walk and 12 strikeouts, another career-high. A fourth inning solo home run was the only hit Strider allowed, and he took a no-decision after exiting in a 1-1 ballgame. In 30 innings on the season, Strider has 56 strikeouts compared to just 11 walks and an ERA of 2.45 in his hot start to the season. Braves prospect stats »

Brewers: Ethan Small, LHP (No. 4), Double-A Biloxi
Small turned in a big performance as he struck out nine over seven scoreless innings. The 24-year-old walked just one and gave up three hits while throwing 64 of his 87 pitches for strikes on his way to his second win of the season. Small, who has pitched to a 1.96 ERA this year, has held opponents to one earned run or fewer in six of his eight starts. Small has also racked up 67 strikeouts over 41 1/3 innings. Brewers prospects stats »

Giants: Kyle Harrison, LHP (No. 8), Low-A San Jose
Harrison was stuck with a no-decision despite spinning six scoreless frames for San Jose. The 19-year-old lefty, a third-round pick from the 2020 Draft, gave up just two hits and struck out eight as he lowered his ERA to 2.48 through the first eight starts of his professional career. Harrison gave up a two-out double in the first and then went on to dominate as he retired 11 of the next 12 batters he faced before giving up a two-out single in the fifth inning. Giants prospects stats »

Orioles: Zac Lowther, LHP (No. 9), Triple-A Norfolk
Lowther threw 47 of his 68 pitches for strikes as he worked his way through five scoreless innings. The 25-year-old walked one, gave up three hits and struck out six in his second scoreless start of the season. Lowther lowered his ERA to 3.98 in the outing and has struck out 23 over 20 1/3 innings. Orioles prospects stats »

Rangers: Sherten Apostel, 3B/1B (No. 9), Double-A Frisco
Curtis Terry, 1B (No. 26), Triple-A Round Rock

Apostel has had a pair of two-homer games this season and both have come within the past 10 days. After going 2-for-5 with a pair of solo homers on June 10, Apostel flexed his muscle again Friday, going 3-for-6 with a double, two homers and five RBIs. The 22-year-old hit a three-run homer in the fifth and a two-run homer in the ninth, bringing his season total to six.

Terry hit for the cycle and went 4-for-5 with two RBIs and three runs scored in Round Rock’s 8-7 loss to Oklahoma City. The 24-year-old tripled in the second, homered in the fourth, doubled in the eighth and singled in the ninth. Although Terry entered the night having gone hitless in each of his past two games, he’s been having a strong year offensively. The four-hit night, Terry’s first of the season, bumped his average up to .316 through his first 36 games at the Triple-A level. The homer, a solo blast, was Terry’s 11th of the season. Rangers prospects stats »

Rays: Taj Bradley, RHP (No. 20), Low-A Charleston
Bradley continued his strong start to the season with five scoreless innings in Charleston’s 4-0 win over Myrtle Beach. Bradley, a fifth-round selection from the 2018 Draft, threw 57 of his 85 pitches for strikes and yielded just one hit, while striking out eight. Bradley has posted a 2.73 ERA through his first seven outings (six starts) this season and struck out 46 over 29 2/3 innings. Rays prospects stats »

Royals: Ben Hernandez, RHP (No. 14), Low-A Columbia
Zach Haake, RHP (No. 18), High-A Quad Cities

Hernandez picked up the first win of his professional career as he spun five scoreless innings. The 19-year-old, a second-round pick from the 2020 Draft, walked one, yielded just two hits and struck out seven in his eighth professional start.

Haake fired the first six innings and Dante Biasi finished the job as Quad Cities twirled a combined no-hitter. Haake, who threw 43 of his 73 pitches for strikes, issued a walk in the first and then another in the third, but that was all the offense Wisconsin could muster as the right-hander then went on to retire the final 11 batters he faced. The 24-year-old struck out four in the outing and lowered his ERA to 4.37 in the process. Haake has made nine appearances this year (eight starts) and struck out 42 over 41 innings. Royals prospects stats »