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  • Writer's pictureSteve Potter

3/15/24 : Today at the Complex

Updated: Mar 16

Minor League Camp :

On Field BP and fielding and the following scheduled events :

Side Bullpens : David Parkinson, Efrain Contreras, Braeden Fausnaught

Live BP : Lachlan Wells, Saul Teran, Alexis De La Cruz, Wilmer Blanco, Trey Dillard

RHP Alexis De La Cruz drew a crowd for his inning of work - rightfully so - he once again showed both impressive pop on the heater but also very good complimentary secondaries.  Our guy Eduardo Tait did his thing once again - smoked a long drive to center field against Alexis just to keep him honest 🤓. The young man can rake - it’s a daily quote in his regard.  Eduardo caught one of the scrimmages yesterday as well - observers were impressed with the arm strength he displayed as a thrower.

Intra-Squad Scrimmage : 7 1/2 innings - Roberts Field

Major leaguers Taijuan Walker, Kyle Schwarber and Matt Strahm participated in today’s minor league scrimmage.

Infielder Erick Brito hammered the first pitch of the scrimmage from Taijuan Walker over the left field fence - Brito has been swinging a very hot bat this spring, it’s the second home run in intra-squad action I’ve seen from him.  Today Erick went 3 for 4 (two singles and HR).  Batters hit Mr. Walker pretty hard albeit his defense behind him was shaky committing three errors in the three innings he pitched - no one should make much of pitching lines in backfield games as the focus is on getting the work in.

Kyle Schwarber made seven plate appearances in the scrimmage going 3 for 6 with a single, two doubles and a walk. He hit the ball hard most every time at the plate, ran the bases the first AB (single) but then had a runner thereafter once he reached base.

Catcher Arturo DeFreitas has also swung the bat very well this spring - he’s produced multiple hard hit baseballs - today he went 2 for 3 (single, double) with a walk.  Arturo has always been a very good defender, if he swings the bat like he’s presently doing he will certainly earn playing time wherever he’s assigned.  Catcher Andrick Nava also had a very productive scrimmage, he went 2 for 4 (single, double) and made a very quick, strong and accurate throw to second base to nail a would be base stealer - to date he’s been an offense first type of receiver, Andrick spent the winter season playing for Tank Adamson in Australia for the ABL champion Adelaide Giants - from what we’ve seen this spring he’s made big strides defensively.

Center fielder Jared Carr had a great day at the plate going 3 for 4 (two singles & a double) as did outfielder Gavin Tonkel (single, two walks, stolen base in four plate appearances).  Catcher Anthony Quirion homered in the contest against David Buchanan.  Jacob Gonzalez had a double and sacrifice fly RBI in four plate appearances.  First baseman Junior Marin legged out a triple on a ball he hit the opposite way down the right field line - a big cheer from his teammates was heard acknowledging the big man’s effort.

Leonardo Rondon, Yhoswar Garcia, Pedro Martinez, Pierce Bennett, Santiago Torres and Diego Gonzalez each had singles.

Yhoswar Garcia stole two bases and ran down multiple fly balls in center field - he can go get em.   Chad Castillo drew two walks in three plate appearances.

Pitching lines :

Matt Strahm - 2 IP, 3 R, 3 H, 2 BB, 3 K’s

David Buchanan - 3 1/3 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 HB, 0 BB, 3 K’s

Taijuan Walker - 3 IP, 6 R - 3 earned, 10 H, 0 BB, 2 K’s

Gunner Mayer - 2 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 BB, 2 K’s

Cam Wynne - 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 BB

Mavis Graves - 2 IP, 0 R, 3 H, 2 BB, 2 K’s

Chuck King - 1 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 2 K’s

Jordi Martinez - 1 1/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 0 BB, 1 K

Brett Schulze - 1 IP, 0 R, 0 H, 1 BB, 0 K’s

I continue to be impressed with the run that RH Gunner Mayer is getting on his fastball and cutter.  He’s getting in on the hands of many hitters - is impressive to watch the growth from his initial days when we first saw him in 2019 learning how to pitch to where he’s at now - has a full arsenal and really good stuff - I see good things happening this coming summer.   RH Chuckie King showed a big breaking slow hook today that was very effective in combination with the mid nineties velocity he brings on the fastball - punched out a couple in his inning of work.  Jordi Martinez continues to shine, I truly believe he’s gonna pitch in the show at some point, a lefty with velocity, movement, secondaries and a take the ball every day type of attitude - what else is there to need? 🤓.   

I think it’s really cool when players come out to watch and support their teammates - there were bunches of them on hand to watch today - it also makes me feel good when they come over to say hello and chat a bit - good stuff.  It’s a strong fraternity of fellowship these fellas have - great to see and embolic of the “protect the standard” development charter.

Other Stuff :

My wife Barb came to watch with me today and we got to meet RHP Tommy McCollum’s parents - it’s really cool when folks come introduce themselves and express their gratitude for the reporting efforts we deliver.  I got that message a lot today from multiple fellow fans as well.  The minor league player development process doesn’t always get a lot of coverage - our attempts to be as informative on a daily basis as we possibly can requires a good bit of time on our part but it’s cool when folks let us know their appreciation - that indeed is really good stuff 🤓.

The Grapefruit League game against the Astros starts at 6:05 PM in West Palm Beach - I’ll cover that separately.

Happy Day, Happy Baseball ⚾️

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