Blue Jays duo stays hot to lead prospect performers
Superstar pair continue to rake for Fisher Cats
New Hampshire's superstar duo was at it again Monday, as Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette powered the Fisher Cats to another win with an 11-1 rout of Trenton.
Guerrero, Toronto's No. 1 prospect (No. 3 overall), went 3-for-3 with a home run, a double and a pair of sacrifice flies to finish with a career-high six RBIs in New Hampshire's fifth straight victory. Bichette also tallied three hits, including a double, and the Blue Jays' No. 2 prospect (No. 13 overall) finished the game 3-for-3 with three runs scored.
Guerrero's big game comes one day after the 19-year-old phenom's first Double-A home run, a late-inning solo shot against Hartford. Guerrero homered late in Monday's contest, too, belting a solo shot in the eighth inning, and then followed it with a two-run double in the ninth to cap his memorable performance. He also reached base once via a walk.
MILB Video - Title: Guerrero Jr. goes deep - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=1922336983
Bichette, meanwhile, continued his torrid start to the season by collecting multiple hits for the fourth time in five games. One of those hits was a double, the 20-year-old shortstop's second this season, and he also picked up his third stolen base in the contest. The performance upped Bichette's average to .391 (5-for-29), giving him a career average of .373 through 137 games.
MILB Video - Title: Bichette cracks double to left - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=1922385183
Also standing out for the Fisher Cats was the Blue Jays' No. 28 prospect, Jonathan Davis. Batting leadoff and playing center field, Davis went 2-for-4 with two steals and a career-high five runs. Right-hander Jon Harris (No. 30) picked up the win on the mound behind five innings of one-run, ball during which he allowed four hits and struck out three.
The rest of the best performances from top prospects Monday
• No. 10 overall prospect Michael Kopech (White Sox No. 2) put his shaky Spring Training performance behind him with a lights-out season debut for Triple-A Charlotte. The 21-year-old flame-thrower struck out the side in the first inning -- while hitting 99 mph with his fastball -- en route to piling up eight strikeouts in four scoreless innings. Kopech allowed two hits, walked two and hit one batter, throwing 51 of 71 pitches for strikes in the performance.
MILB Video - Title: Kopech fans his eighth batter - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=1922026383
• No. 21 overall prospect Hunter Greene (Reds' No. 2) was electric in his full-season debut for Class A Dayton despite a shaky first inning. The 2017 No. 2 overall Draft pick recorded eight of his nine outs via the strikeout, as his fastball sat at 96-100 mph while he paired it with an upper-80s breaking ball. He allowed two earned runs on five hits and threw 35 of his 53 pitches for strikes.
MILB Video - Title: Greene debuts for the Dragons - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=1922765783
• No. 25 overall prospect Brendan McKay (Rays' No. 3) made it look easy in his full-season pitching debut, throwing 17 of his 24 pitches for strikes in two perfect innings for Class A Bowling Green. He struck out four batters and recorded his other two outs on the ground. At the plate, meanwhile, McKay has opened his season with a .556 average (5-for-9), six walks (.733 OBP) and five RBIs across his first three games.
MILB Video - Title: McKay gets fourth strikeout - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=1921685183
• Astros No. 25 prospect J.J. Matijevic went deep twice in a 3-for-4 performance that helped power Class A Quad Cities past Kane County, 11-1. The No. 75 overall pick in last year's Draft hit a solo homer in the third inning and added a two-run blast in the seventh, both coming with two outs in the frame. Matijevic was just 1-for-9 at the plate prior to Monday's outburst.
• Blue Jays No. 6 prospect Danny Jansen picked up where he left off in his season debut, going 4-for-4 with a solo home run and two doubles in Triple-A Buffalo's extra-inning win over Pawtucket. Finally healthy in 2017, Jansen broke out to slash .323/.400/.484 with 10 homers and 25 doubles, with more walks (41) than strikeouts (40), across three levels and a career-high 104 games.
MILB Video - Title: Jansen blasts first homer - Url: http://www.milb.com/r/video?content_id=1922226383
• Orioles No. 17 prospect Zac Lowther was unhittable in his full-season debut for Class A Delmarva. The 21-year-old left-hander, the No. 74 overall pick in last year's Draft, struck out the side in the first three innings and again in the fifth to finish with 13 strikeouts in six hitless frames. Lowther issued one walk in the outing, throwing 53 of his 80 pitches for strikes. He fanned 75 batters in 54 1/3 innings (12.4 K/9) in his 2017 pro debut after finishing fourth in NCAA Division I in whiff rate (13.3) as a Xavier junior.
• D-backs No. 6 prospect Daulton Varsho staked Class A Advanced Visalia to an early lead as he hit a two-run double in the first inning, followed by a three-run homer in the second to lead the Rawhide past Lake Elsinore, 7-1. One of the better offensive catchers in the Minors, Varsho, 21, hit seven homers and 16 doubles last season in 193 at-bats (50 games) in the Class A Short Season Northwest League.
• The Marlins' 2017 Draft class was on display in Class A Advanced Jupiter's win over Clearwater, as Marlins' Nos. 19 and 20 prospects, Joe Dunand and Riley Mahan, both hit home runs and combined for five RBIs and five runs scored. Dunand, the club's second-round pick, hit a solo shot as well as a double to finish 3-for-5 with three runs and two RBIs, while third-rounder Mahan delivered a three-run shot in a 2-for-4 performance. It was the first home run this season for both players.
• Braves No. 24 prospect Brett Cumberland connected on his third home run in five games as Class A Advanced Florida fell to Fort Myers, 6-4. The 22-year-old switch-hitting catcher hit a solo shot in his first at-bat and later pushed across a run with a single to finish 2-for-3 with two runs, two RBIs and a walk. Cumberland hit just one homer over 56 games with the Fire Frogs last season.
• Phillies No. 25 prospect Cole Irvin took a no-decision in his debut for Triple-A Lehigh Valley despite striking out 10 batters in five innings. Throwing 52 of his 81 pitches for strikes, the 24-year-old righty allowed two runs on four hits -- including a two-run home run -- and one walk. Irvin posted a 3.39 ERA in 151 1/3 innings in his first full season, splitting the year between Class A Advanced Clearwater and Double-A Reading.