Things may have finally turned a corner for the Cleveland Indians’ Mahoning Valley Scrappers affiliate, who endured nearly a month of tough games to start the New York-Penn League season.
After a 3-11 start to its season and a 3-7 mark to begin July, Mahoning Valley has gotten into the win column with much more regularity, posting an 8-3 record over its last eleven games, including a season-high four-game winning streak from July 12 through 15.
The Scrappers (14-21) are now nine games in back of the State College Spikes in the Pinckney Division, fifth out of six teams, but with a sizable lead over the cellar-dwelling Batavia Muckdogs. The club will look to continue taking series by series, as the Scrappers have won four straight sets, including a three-game matchup against Lowell to start their current six-game homestand. They will welcome in Connecticut on Sunday for three games before hitting the road for Aberdeen.
In other news and notes from the Scrappers’ scrapbook:
ANOTHER MEJIA DOING THINGS IN THE INDIANS ORGANIZATION
It may not be the 37-game hitting streak of Lynchburg’s Francisco Mejia, but outfielder Gabriel Mejia has started off the short-season schedule strong for the Scrappers.
The 20-year-old center fielder hit in eleven straight games from July 8 through 19 before the streak came to a close with a 0-for-3 effort in the series opener against Lowell. He did draw a walk, however, and with three hits on Friday and two more on Saturday, he extended his on-base streak to 14 straight games.
ANGULO GIVING ‘PEN SOME DEPTH
Twenty-two-year-old Argenis Angulo has gotten off to an impressive start for the Scrappers in eleven outings this season.
The right-hander has logged 21 2/3 innings of work, posting a 1-0 record, a 1.25 ERA, a 0.78 WHIP, and a .118 batting average against. He has allowed just three runs on eight hits, walked nine, and struck out 25 on the season.
He was a 19th round pick by the Indians in the 2014 draft. He spent his first two years with the club working in the Arizona League.
CALICA CONTINUES TO RAKE
Eleventh rounder in June, Andrew Calica, has maintained an impressive start to his professional career by hitting .459 over his last ten games to boost his season batting mark to .392 with a .508 on-base percentage.
Seven times in the last ten games, Calica has provided the Scrappers with a multi-hit game. He has been held hitless just four times in his 14 pro games so far. The outfielder has two doubles, three triples, a homer, and has driven in eight runs. He has also stolen five bases in six attempts.
BIEBER MAKES PRO DEBUT
Cleveland’s fourth round pick in this June’s draft, right-hander Shane Bieber, made his professional debut on Friday. He got the start and worked two innings, allowing one earned run on two hits with two strikeouts.
The 21-year-old was drafted out of UC Santa Barbara.
CIVALE’S STRONG START CONTINUES
Aaron Civale, the Indians’ third round pick in June out of Northeastern, dropped his ERA to 1.13 on the season with another scoreless outing on Saturday. He started his sixth game of the season and matched his season high of three innings while allowing just one hit and striking out three.
He has worked 16 innings on the season, giving up just two runs on ten hits with two walks (0.75 WHIP) and 14 strikeouts while limiting opposing hitters to a .185 batting average.
HILLMAN’S ERA JUMPS A RUN
Southpaw Juan Hillman was dealt his second bad start of the year when he allowed four earned runs on six hits in three innings in the series opening loss to Lowell on Thursday. His ERA climbed from 0.89 at the start of the game to 1.89 at the end of his outing.
McKENZIE WINS THIRD
Triston McKenzie, 18, won his third game of the season on Tuesday after he allowed just one earned run on four hits in six innings of work. He walked a pair while striking out eight in Auburn. The innings and strikeouts totals matched his season highs.
For the season, McKenzie is 3-2 with a 0.48 ERA, 1.04 WHIP, and .191 batting average against. It is his second season in the Indians organization after being selected in the 2015 draft.
COLLINS HAS FUN WITH THREES
Cleveland’s 13th round selection this June, catcher Gavin Collins, established new professional career highs with three runs batted in and three hits (including his fourth double of the season) in Friday’s 14-7 win over Lowell.
Catcher Jack Goihl was transferred back to the Scrappers on Friday from the Lake County Captains.
Pitchers Kenny Mathews and Devon Stewart were assigned to the Captains on July 16.
Photo removed by request