Louisville Bats: 70-67 overall, 626 runs scored, 600 runs allowed.
The Bats are technically still alive for the playoffs as a wild card team, but have an elimination number of 2 with a week and a half to go and three teams to climb over. Barring a miracle, this will be the first time that the Bats haven’t made the playoffs since the 2007 season. Denis Phipps continued to hit this past week, hitting .333/.,357/.385 over his last 10 games and has a current 6 game hitting streak. Jeremy Hermida has been on an absolute tear, hitting .474/.535/.789 over his last 10 games, each of which he has a hit in. Juan Francisco is also hitting well, going for a .350/.386/.675 line in his last 10 games. Chris Valaika joined the offensive party in August and is hitting .330 for the month with a .534 slugging percentage. Edinson Volquez has a 2.77 ERA in August with 13 walks and 43 strikeouts in 39 innings.
Carolina Mudcats: 27-35 (2nd half), 339 runs scored, 344 runs allowed.
The Mudcats have officially been eliminated from the playoffs. They are currently 9.5 games back of first place. The turn around from the first half to the second half has been a good one. The Mudcats finished 24 games below .500 in the first half. The biggest news from the team is that Henry Rodriguez broke his ankle last night and will miss the rest of the season. He was hitting .302/.367/.432 with the Mudcats in 278 at bats. Neftali Soto needs one HR to tie for the league lead and two HR’s to take the league lead from Paul Goldschmidt, who is now in the Majors. With another HR he will become the first Reds minor leaguer with 30 HR’s in a season since Adam Dunn in 2001. Yasmani Grandal has hit .323 over his last 10 games. Didi Gregorius is carrying a .302 average of his last 10 games. Quintin Berry has a .333/.476/.333 line over his last 10 games. Pedro Villarreal has a 2.45 ERA in his last three starts with 13 strikeouts and no walks (22 ip).
Bakersfield Blaze: 28-34 (2nd half), 316 runs scored, 328 runs allowed.
Like the Mudcats, the Blaze have officially been eliminated from the playoffs as they are 8.5 games out of first place with 8 games remaining on the schedule. Devin Lohman has been on fire over his last 10 games, hitting .296/.472/.630. He has his OPS up to .884 for the Blaze since his promotion from Billings. Stephen Hunt has posted a .303/.314/.576 line in his last 10 games. Jorge Jimenez has hit .342/.333/.474 in his last 10 games (not a typo… his OBP is lower than his average in that span). JC Sulbaran has 13 strikeouts and 2 walks in his last two starts (10ip).
Dayton Dragons: 43-19 (2nd half), 363 runs scored, 222 runs allowed.
The Dragons clinched the division with a win on Sunday. It will be their first playoff appearance since 2008. Ronald Torreyes is hitting .311/.347/.444 over his last 10 games. Donald Lutz has posted a .395/.465/.421 line over his last 10 games. Kurtis Muller has a .333/.478/.417 line over the same stretch. Billy Hamilton is pushing for 100 steals, currently sitting at 94 with 11 games remaining. He has been on fire, hitting .444/.500/.489 in his last 10 games. Not to be outdone, Juan Duran is up to .410/.439/.641 in his last 10 games. Chris Berset, in limited playing time, has hit .350/.422/.550 over his last 10 games, including multi-hit games in three of his last four games. Is there any wonder why this team has gone 8-2 in their last 10? Josh Smith has allowed 2 earned runs in his last 18 innings pitched with just one walk and 22 strikeouts. Daniel Corcino has a 1.80 ERA in his last 7 starts (40ip) with 44 strikeouts and 11 walks. Daniel Wolford hasn’t allowed an earned run since June 9th. That streak spans 33.3 innings. Chad Rogers has allowed just 1 run in his last 20 innings pitched. Blaine Howell has given up 3 runs in his last 10 games (13.2 innings: 1.98 ERA). Drew Hayes has allowed just 1 run in his last 10 games (11.1 innings) with 18 strikeouts. I will just say it now, if this isn’t the best team in the Midwest League, I would love to see who is.
Billings Mustangs: 18-10 (2nd half), 157 runs scored, 138 runs allowed.
The Mustangs find themselves one game up in the division with 10 games left. Billings has won 6 games in a row. Bryson Smith has hit .405/.522/.541 over his last 10 games. Danny Vicioso has hit .412/.417/.647 over his last 10 games, though those games have taken place over a 28 day stretch. Juan Perez has hit .295/.380/.614 over his last 10 with 8 RBI. Sammy Diaz has hit .310 over his last 10 games. Spencer Dickinson is hitting .345/.459/.483 over his last 29 at bats. Kyle Waldrop hasn’t drawn a walk since July 29th, but he has hit .337/.350/.582 in August (though he has 26 strikeouts without a walk in 98 at bats). Tony Cingrani has been lights out for the Mustangs all season, but the peak of his season came this past week when he threw 6 perfect innings with 13 strikeouts. On the season he has a 1.56 ERA in 40.1 innings with 5 walks and 66 strikeouts. Jason Braun has a 2.61 ERA in 6 games since coming up from Arizona.
AZL Reds: 31-24 overall, 330 runs scored, 323 runs allowed.
The Reds win yesterday clinched the wildcard spot with just one game remaining on the schedule (which is going on as I type this) before the playoffs begin. Steven Selsky signed a bit late, but he has been great since signing. In 20 games he has hit .338/.432/.662 with 12 walks and 13 strikeouts. Gabriel Rosa has hit .308/.372/.410 in his last 10 games and has hit .279 in August. Joel Bender has a 3.22 ERA in his last 10 games with 41 strikeouts in 44.2 innings. Alejandro Chacin has continued to dominate, with a 2.53 ERA over his last 10 games.