Menez strikes out career-high 10 against Quakes

BOX SCORES: SAC / SJ / AUG

Through four starts in the California League, Conner Menez owns marks worth keeping an eye on as the minor league season progresses. The left-hander from The Master's University, who skipped the South Atlantic League, has struck out 22.9% of the batters he's faced thus far, and walked only 5.2% of them. 

Thursday night's start in Rancho Cucamonga saw Menez set a career-high in strikeouts (10) while going six strong innings and allowing two runs. Baseball Prospectus writer Wilson Karaman had this to say about Menez:

This is pretty much in line with where I've always had Menez during the three times I've seen him, though 93 is a new number. He's topped at 92 for me every time, sitting 89-91, so either Menez was putting a little bit more behind his fastball on Thursday or the gun was slightly hot. My guess is the former, as Karaman was likely using his own gun, which I trust. 

The slider has always been the best pitch thrown during my viewings, especially with his ability to throw it to the back foot of right-handers. Of Menez's 10 punch outs, seven were of Rancho Cucamonga right-handed hitters.

OTHER NOTES

— An update on infielder Frandy De La Rosa, who the Giants received in the Clayton Blackburn deal: .188/.350/.281 with a 32.5% strikeout rate. Thankfully, he's drawing walks at crazy rate of 17.5% because otherwise, he's been quite underwhelming while repeating in the same league he received 483 plate appearances a year ago. Another interesting thing about De La Rosa is that he gets caught stealing frequently. And by frequently, I mean opposing catchers gunned him down 23 times in 2016, which was four more times than he actually succeeded in stealing a base. He stole two bags Thursday, but was caught once.

— Check out these numbers from goofy right-hander Ryan Halstead through nine appearances: 11 IP, 10 H, 1 R, 0 BB, 9 K. Halstead has basically been San Jose's closer with the struggles of Caleb Smith reducing his role in the bullpen. Only one of those 10 hits has gone for extra bases, and it was a double in his first game of the year. He featured impressive stuff when I saw him last Friday, though I wasn't able to capture it on video. I'll make sure to get him next weekend when the Baby Giants are back in Stockton to face the Ports.

TOMORROW'S STARTERS

TOP-30 PROSPECTS ROUNDUP

  1. Tyler Beede: DNP
  2. Christian Arroyo: 2-for-4, RBI, SO
  3. Bryan Reynolds: 1-for-4, 2 SO
  4. Steven Duggar: DNP
  5. Chris Shaw: DNP
  6. Sandro Fabian: 0-for-5, SO
  7. Heath Quinn: DNP
  8. Joan Gregorio: DNP
  9. Jordan Johnson: DNP
  10. Andrew Suarez: DNP
  11. Ty Blach: DNP
  12. Steven Okert: DNP
  13. Sam Coonrod: DNP
  14. Matt Krook: DNP
  15. Aramis Garcia: DNP
  16. C.J. Hinojosa: DNP
  17. Reyes Moronta: DNP
  18. Rodolfo Martinez: DNP
  19. Austin Slater: 1-for-2, SO
  20. Kelvin Beltre: DNP
  21. Dan Slania: DNP
  22. Cory Taylor: DNP
  23. Chris Stratton: DNP
  24. Chase Johnson: DNP
  25. Jalen Miller: DNP
  26. Melvin Adon: DNP
  27. Garrett Williams: DNP
  28. Dylan Davis: 0-for-4, R
  29. Ryder Jones: 1-for-2, SO
  30. Hunter Cole: DNP

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