Owen Caissie – Picture by Todd Johnson
Today went by extremely fast. I felt like I just left to go to teach and next thing I knew I was sitting down with a bacon cheeseburger (no bun) and some tater tots to watch Myrtle Beach. And just as fast as the day went, that’s how fast the night went.
Usually when I sit down to watch a game, I’m not thinking about who is going to win the hitter of the day or the starting pitcher of the day. I’m just hoping to see some prospects play well. I got to see plenty of that tonight.
In the Myrtle Beach game, the Pelicans got out to a 3-0 lead before Columbia crawled back in it. The game was tied at 3 in the top of the seventh when Pete Crow Armstrong hit his fifth home run in the year as he went 3-for-4 on the night with a walk and he scored three runs. His batting average is now at .375 and his OPS is at 1.033. I don’t know what more needs to be done for him in Myrtle Beach. Most of you would probably think that he would be the Hitter of the Day today,. You would be wrong, but it was close. Very close.
PJ Higgins of Iowa is just killing it at the plate. In his last 18 games he is 30-for-58 with a .517 average (per Alex Cohen). There is really nothing left for him to prove in Iowa as tonight he went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and a double. That was not good enough to win hitter of the day, either.
Today’s Hitter of the Day goes to Owen Caissie of South Bend who cranked out home runs number two and three on the year, almost to the exact same spot. On the night he went 2-for-4 and drove in four runs. For the month of May, he’s hitting .306 with an OPS. of 921. As the only teenager in the Midwest league, he seems to be rounding into form <drink>.
We’re going to stay with South Bend for tonight‘s Starting Pitcher of the Day. That award goes to DJ Herz who went four innings, allowed three hits and one run, walked one, and struck out seven. The only run came on a home run. The only thing Herz really needs to do to get to Tennessee is to get to the fifth inning consistently. Tonight, the Cubs let him go to 77 pitches, 50 of which were strikes, which is a god-like 65%. He’s close.
The big surprise of the day actually came in the Tennessee game. Lefty Brandon Leibrandt pitched four shutout innings and struck out five while only allowing just one hit in Tennessee’s loss to Chattanooga. It was his best outing of the year and lowered his season ERA down to 3.64. That gets him the Reliever of the Day.
When August comes around, and prospect Lists redone, Moises Ballesteros is going to be one of the biggest movers on all of our lists. He is such a pure hitter that he makes it look almost effortless at the plate. Tonight, he posted his extended spring training home run in slow motion for all of us to enjoy on his Instagram account.
I will be back tomorrow from Appleton, Wisconsin as I will be out in the cold taking pictures again. I’m excited to see a lot of the new guys play and to see how much Owen Caissie has improved from three weeks ago when I saw him in Davenport.