There were no games in the Florida State Leauge last weekend, as the Advanced-A circuit held their annual All Star events. The home run derby took place Saturday afternoon, the All-Star game that night, and Fort Myers’ Adam Brett Walker stole the show in both. The Florida State League’s leading home run hitter reeled off a series of blasts and scored 35 points to win the derby, before earning All Star Game MVP honors despite playing for the losing club.
Playing for the FSL South, Walker, The Twins 13th best prospect according to MLB.com, went 2-4 with a home run and double as they took a 4-2 lead heading into the ninth. Bradenton’s Bryton Trepagnier came onto close, but coughed up the lead, giving up a walk, a wild pitch, a double, three singles, and the deciding four runs of the ball game. For the South, Lakeland’s Angel Nesbitt had no trouble closing it out. The Tigers relief prospect, who owns an 0.79 ERA through 24 games, struck out two in a perfect ninth to seal the win.
After a league-wide breather the next day, the teams returned to regular scheduled programming last Monday.
With Jameson Taillon out for the year with Tommy John, the Pirates appear to have found a new top pitching prospect. Thursday night’s performance against Jupiter, in which the Bradenton starter threw six shutout innings en route to a 2-0 victory, ran Glasnows scoreless inning streak up to 24 1/3. The streak, which began May 22nd, has spanned five starts, 33 strikeouts, and only 10 walks. Gasnow, who ranked 46th on Baseball America’s top 100 list prior to this season, now owns a sparkling 1.66 through ten FSL starts and a promotion should not be long in the waiting. It may very well come with the end of the streak.
With his own dominant performance Friday night was Lakeland starter Josh Turley, who improved his record t0 6-0 by blanking the Tampa Yankees and fanning eight over six solid frames. The Tigers’ sixteenth round selection from the 2012 draft has impressed since he was moved into the rotation at the end of April. Over the course of 10 starts, he has gone 5-0 with a 1.94 ERA and 55 strikeouts in 65 innings.
The most significant start of the week, though, probably belongs to Tyrell Jenkins of Palm Beach, who returned to the mound after a nearly year-long hiatus. The former first round pick and the Cardinals 15th best prospect, per MLB.com, underwent shoulder surgery last August but began his comeback against Jupiter on Tuesday. He was brilliant. Over six scoreless frames, he struck out three and did not allow a hit, inducing 11 ground ball outs. Jenkins has always had some of the best stuff in St. Louis’s system, but was held back by constant should trouble. If his injury woes are actually behind him, he could move very quickly.
Leading the charge on the other side of the ball was Fort Myers catcher Stuart turner who went 2-3 with a home run to lift the Miracle to a 5-0 victory over Bradenton and the 2014 FSL South first half title. The Daytona Cubs’ Dan Vogelbach has also had a great post-all star week. He is seven for his last 14 with a home run, four runs scored, and five RBIs.