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Luis Medina (Robert M. Pimpsner)

Yankees MiLB Previews

Pinstriped Previews: Hudson Valley plays 2 in Brooklyn

The Yankees affiliates went 1-2 in the three games that were played on Tuesday with the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Railriders needing a comeback to avoid a rare winless night in the organization. Today, it is a five-game slate with Hudson Valley playing a doubleheader in Brooklyn. Read about who is taking the mound with our Pinstriped Previews:

Brian Keller (Photo by Michael Dill)

Triple-A

Scranton Wilkes-Barre RailRiders (20-9) vs. Buffalo Bisons (15-14)

Trenton Thunder Ballpark (Trenton, NJ) – 7:00 PM ET

RHP Brian Keller (0-0, 3.18 ERA) vs. RHP Jacob Waguespack (1-1, 5.48 ERA)

The RailRiders found themselves down 5-0 early in the series opener against Buffalo last night, but they were able to rally and pick up a 7-5, come-from-behind victory. Tonight, they send Brian Keller to the mound. Keller has gone four innings in each of his last three starts.

While Keller hasn’t been dominant, the 26-year-old right-hander has allowed no more than two runs in each of his start despite averaging four walks per outing (20 for the season). Against Lehigh Valley on June 3, Keller went four innings, allowed one run on four hits, walked four, and struck out three on 81 pitches (48 strikes) in a no-decision.

Keller did face Buffalo back on May 27. In that start, he went four innings, allowed two runs on one hit (home run), walked five, and struck out three.

As for Waguespack, the 27-year-old right-hander is coming off of a rough outing in his last start on June 4 against Syracuse. In that game, he went four innings, allowed four runs on six hits, walked three, and struck out five on 83 pitches (51 strikes) in a no-decision.

Waguespack was good the last time he went against Scranton Wilkes-Barre on May 26. He allowed one hit, hit a batter, and struck out four over three scoreless innings in that outing.

Trey Amburgey will look to extend his 2021 hit streak to 15 games and his overall streak to 17 games dating back to 2019. The RailRiders also got Robinson Chirinos back in the lineup last night as he returned after competing for Venezuela in the Olympic Qualifiers tournament in Florida.

JP Sears pitching for the Somerset Patriots on May 7, 2021. (Chris Jones)

Double-A

Somerset Patriots (20-10) vs. Erie SeaWolves (20-10)

UPMC Park I 7:05 PM

LHP JP Sears (3-0, 2.70 ERA) vs. RHP A.J. Ladwig (1-2, 4.50 ERA)

In the series opener last night, the SeaWolves got off to a big lead and never looked back as they defeated the Patriots 8-2. Although Glenn Otto struck out 10 batters for the third time this year, he allowed six runs on six hits over 6.2 innings in a loss.

Tonight, the Patriots will go with JP Sears, who was recently named the Double-A Northeast Pitcher of the Week. Sears made a brief relief appearance on June 6 against Reading and walked a batter over one hitless inning.

The 25-year-old southpaw was dominant in his last start on June 1 when he allowed an unearned run on three hits and struck out 10 without walking a batter in five innings of work (54 of 72 pitches were strikes). This season, Sears has 32 strikeouts to 8 walks in 6 games while holding opposing batters to a .200 average.

As for Ladwig, the Tigers selected him in the 11th round of the 2014 MLB Draft. Ladwig did get to Triple-A in 2018, but he did not pitch at all during the 2019 season due to Tommy John surgery.

In his return to the mound, he has walked only two batters in four starts (18 strikeouts). His last outing was short on June 4 against Akron (0.2 IP, 1 ER, 3 H, 1 BB, 1 K). Before that, the 28-year-old right-hander had 17 strikeouts to 1 walk over the course of 15.1 innings in the month of May.

Despite the loss last night, Somerset did have Oswald Peraza make his debut leading off and at shortstop and Dermis Garcia hit his 11th home run of the season.

Jhony Brito (Photo Courtesy of the Brooklyn Cyclones)

High-A

Hudson Valley Renegades (15-13) vs. Brooklyn Cyclones (9-18)

Maimonides Park I 5:00 PM (Game 1)

Game 1: RHP Jhony Brito (1-2, 2.31 ERA) vs. RHP Justin Lasko (0-1, 7.02 ERA)

Game 2: RHP Luis Medina (2-0, 1.63 ERA) vs. LHP Cam Opp (0-2, 15.58 ERA)

After a rainout on Tuesday night, the Renegades and Cyclones will begin their series with a doubleheader on Wednesday. These two teams faced each other in Brooklyn on May 18-23 and ended up splitting the six-game series. The Cyclones enter this series having lost eight of their last ten games while Hudson Valley lost three of the five games they played against the Wilmington Blue Rocks.

Brito will get the start for the Renegades in Game 1. The 23-year-old right-hander has been pounding the strike zone this season as he has thrown 69.5% of his pitches for strikes. That has resulted in him having 21 strikeouts to just 4 walks in 23.1 innings pitched (.205 opponents batting average).

Over his last two starts, Brito has not allowed an earned run, but he took the loss in his last start against Wilmington on June 1. He allowed three unearned runs on two hits, walked a batter, and struck out five over five innings (45 of 65 pitches were strikes).

On May 19 against Brooklyn, Brito ended up taking the loss as he allowed three runs on seven hits, hit a batter, walked a batter, and struck out five on 68 pitches (48 strikes).

As for the Cyclones, they will send Justin Lasko to the mound in Game 1 for just the fifth start of his professional career. The 30th Round pick of the New York Mets in 2019 was called up to High-A on May 29 after starting the season at Low-A St. Lucie.

Lasko made his Cyclones debut on June 2 against Jersey Shore. He allowed four runs on four hits, walked a batter, and struck out three over five innings in a loss (41 of 69 pitches were strikes).

In Game 2, the Renegades will go with Luis Medina. In all six of his starts, the 22-year-old right-hander has allowed no more than two runs in any game and he has at least six strikeouts in every start. He will be facing the Cyclones tonight for the second time this season.

Back on June 2, Medina did have a season-high four walks against Wilmington in a no-decision. He went 4.2 innings, allowed one run on three hits and struck out seven in addition to the four walks on 91 pitches (52 strikes) in a no-decision. Medina will look to duplicate the performance he had against Brooklyn on May 20. He allowed one run on one hit, walked two batters, and struck out 11 (season-high) on 76 pitches (49 strikes) over 5.2 innings in a win.

Opp is listed as Brooklyn’s starter for Game 2 and he has struggled In the three starts he has had since being promoted to Brooklyn. On June 3 against Jersey Shore, he allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits and struck out two over three innings on 61 pitches (39 strikes) in a no-decision.

The 25-year-old southpaw faced Hudson Valley in his High-A debut on May 22 and took the loss in that game. He allowed five runs on five hits, walked two, and struck out four over 3.2 innings (46 of 73 pitches were strikes). Eduardo Torrealba was 4-for-4 with an RBI in that game for Hudson Valley.

Josh Smith is leading off Game 1 for Hudson Valley at shortstop as he makes his High-A debut and Brandon Lockridge is back in the outfield tonight after being on the injured list since May 13.

Jhonatan Munoz (Photo by John Brophy/Pinstriped Prospects)

Low-A

Tampa Tarpons (22-9) vs. Clearwater Threshers (17-14)

BayCare Ballpark I 7:00 PM

RHP Jhonatan Munoz (1-1. 8.74 ERA) vs. RHP Mick Abel (0-2, 3.57 ERA)

After taking five out of six games in their series against Lakeland last week and scoring 49 runs in those games, the Tarpons managed only one run in their series opener against Clearwater and they struck out 13 times as they lost in walk-off fashion. No starter has been listed for tonight’s game.

Jhonatan Munoz will get the start for the Tarpons in this game. The 21-year-old right-hander hasn’t made a start for Tampa since May 23, but he has made two relief appearances for the team since, including recording six strikeouts over three innings in an outing against Dunedin on May 28.

In that May 23 start against Fort Myers, Munoz allowed six unearned runs on one hit, hit two batters, walked four, and struck out two on 47 pitches (21 strikes) in 1.2 innings of work.

The Threshers will send their top prospect in the organization to the mound according to MLB Pipeline in right-hander Mick Abel. Abel was selected with the 15th overall pick in last year’s MLB Draft out of Jesuit High School in Oregon.

Abel has made six starts in High-A and while he has yet to clear four innings in any start, he has held opposing hitters to a .194 batting average and he has allowed only two runs in his last four outings.

Back on June 3 against Daytona, the 19-year-old right-hander allowed two hits, walked a batter, and struck out six over 3.2 scoreless innings on 62 pitches (42 strikes). According to MLB Pipeline, Abel can get his fastball up into the high 90s in velocity (max of 98) to go with a slider and curveball.

Even in a loss, Chad Bell went 2-for-4 with a triple on Tuesday to improve his average to .284 on the season. The Tarpons third baseman has recorded multiple hits in three of his last five games this month and he has now reached base in 25 consecutive games.

Written By

I am an alum of St. John's University, where I majored in sports management.

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