The Fresno Grizzlies are off to a 21-7 thanks to an offense that is hitting .300 as a team. But it’s the team’s pitching that leads the Pacific Coast League with a 3.25 ERA.
And Giants fans have seen some of that pitching in the bigs.
Eric Hacker threw a quality start in his one spot start last week. Hacker returned to Fresno and earned his fifth win on Wednesday, improving to 5-0 on the season.
Steve Edlefsen and his 1.42 ERA got called up last week. Then came Travis Blackley and his 0.39 ERA to aid the Giants’ bullpen.
We haven’t seen Shane Loux and his 0.55 ERA in 16.1 innings. Nor have seen Heath Hembree … yet.
Hembree, the 23-year-old Fresno closer, is 1-0 with 1.64 ERA and seven saves. He’s fanned 10 batters in 11 IP with three walks.
And he seems to be getting better. He’s recorded saves in his last five outings dating back to April 26. He hasn’t allowed a hit in any of those outings, walked just one and struck out five.
Here’s a look at other Giants minor-league players:
OF Justin Christian has cooled off a bit from his torrid start. But is still hitting .370 with 3 HRs and 15 RBI. His 11 walks gives him a .438. If he could play 3B, he could get a call. But the Giants don’t need outfielders now. OF Roger Kieschnick is in the same boat as Christian. He’s stuck in Fresno with 6 HR, 17 RBI and .342 average. After scuffling at the start, OF Francisco Peguero seemed to find his stroke. He’s hitting .316 over the past 10 games. His season numbers sit at 2 HR, 19 RBI, .237 AVG.
The Eastern League’s reputation has being tough on hitters continues to be true. Some Flying Squirrels are hitting like 3B Daniel Mayora (0 HR, 12 RBI, .308) and OF Juan Perez (2 HR, 7 RBI, .281). But most of the Giants big hitting prospects continue to struggle. 3B Chris Dominguez, who had started off well, has slumped, hitting .135 in his past 10 games and now sits at 1 HR, 12 RBI, .258. Others who started off really, REALLY bad are showing signs of improvement. C Tommy Joseph (3 HR, 7 RBI, .244) had a two-homer game on Monday. SS Ehire Adrianza (0 HR, 6 RBI, .233) is hitting .300 over the past 10 days, and his 13 walks have given an .327 OBP. OF Gary Brown (0 HR, 12 RBI, .230) is hiting .275 over the past 10 games and has doubled his stolen-base total with three steals in four attempts. He now has 6 steals in nine attempts for the season. He’s raking left-handed hitting (.353), but his .205 average against righties won’t get him to the bigs anytime soon. Relief pitcher Brett Bochy, son of the Giants manager, has not allowed a run and only five hits in 15.1 IP. He’s struck out 14. Starter Chris Heston is 2-2 despite a 1.21 ERA in five starts. He’d fit in great with the Giants. He has 25 Ks in 29.2 IP.
CLASS A SAN JOSE
High prospect C Andrew Sugac (.239) continue to get most starts, but C Jeff Arnold is off to red-shot start (.520 in 25 ABs). OF Jarrett Parker, a second-round pick out of Virginia in 2010, has gone from bad to downright terrible. He’s hitting .165 with 4 HRs and 10 RBI with a whopping 43 Ks in 79 ABs. Over the past 10 games, he’s 1 for 30 with 15 Ks. SS Joe Panik also is struggling (0 HR, 11 RBI, .216). But at least he’s hitting the ball with 12 K, 15 BB in 97 ABs. Jack Snodgrass is 3-1 with 1.23 ERA with 21 Ks and 4 BB and 29.1 IP in five starts. Ryan Bradley is 2-2 with 1.98 ERA in 5 starts. Seth Rosin has 2.79 ERA and three saves with 16 Ks, 4 BB in 9.2 IP.
CLASS A AUGUSTA
If the Giants need a power-hitting 3B, look at Jose Cuevas, who has 4 HR, 18 RBI with .255 AVG and .770 OPS. Kyle Crick is 0-1 with 2.30 ERA, but he needs to control his walks (14 BB in 15.2 IP).