Minor league baseball is finally back. After MLB canceled last year’s slate of affiliate games due to the COVID-19 pandemic and began an unprecedented consolidation of minor-league ball, fans finally have official box scores to track and highlights to watch on MILB TV. Make sure to revisit our daily SF Giants prospect rundowns to keep up with each of their minor-league affiliates.
If you do not feel well acclimated to the prospects throughout the farm system, you might want to revisit our prospect week articles that detailed the system from the top prospect to lower-level fringes. If you’re just interested in the biggest names, then the preseason SF Giants top 31 prospects list is the one-stop-shop for you.
SF Giants Prospects Rundown 5/11: Triple-A
Sacramento River Cats 7 at Las Vegas Aviators 10
Performance of the Game: Drew Robinson (2-3, 2B, HR, BB, K, R, 2 RBI)
Drew Robinson may have the largest following of any 29-year-old at Triple-A in his third different organization with just 100 unexceptional big-league games. Of course, the fanfare is well deserved following Robinson’s remarkable recovery from a suicide attempt last summer. Robinson has been incredibly forthcoming about his struggles with mental illness and has continued pursuing professional baseball even after losing his eye in his attempt last year.
Given all that had transpired over the past year, it was still hard to know what to expect from Robinson back on the field. A return to the lower minor leagues would have been no less noteworthy. However, the Giants challenged him with an assignment to their highest minor-league level. While he had struggled at the plate entering play on Tuesday, he quickly had a breakout performance started.
Robinson was the third River Cat to homer in the second inning off Aces starter Matt Milburn, who allowed big flies to Robinson, Jason Krizan, Chadwick Tromp, and Mitchell Tolman. Still, even after Milburn was pulled, Robinson added another RBI-double off nasty southpaw A.J. Puk and later walked.
River Cats starter Anthony Banda did not allow four home runs, but the one-time top-100 prospect with the Arizona Diamondbacks allowed six runs on seven hits (including two homers) and a walk in 3.2 innings. Banda has never been the same pitcher since undergoing UCL surgery in June of 2018 and continues to oscillate between throwing strikes in the middle of the zone and troubling to throw strikes at all.
The River Cats bullpen struggled to hold down the Aces offense. Kervin Castro, Gregory Santos, and Silvino Bracho all struck out at least a batter in their outings but allowed at least a run (Castro allowed two). Bracho and Santos each allowed a solo home run. Former Giants closer Trevor Gott was the lone River Cats pitcher whose ERA was unblemished, throwing a shutout eighth inning.
Sacramento’s offense was relatively quiet once Milburn left the game. After scoring six runs in the first three innings, the River Cats were shutout until LaMonte Wade Jr. doubled to lead off the ninth inning and eventually scraped across the final run of the game. Tromp did match Robinson’s 2-3 line with a walk of his own, and Jason Vosler recorded a pair of hits as well.