Washington Nationals minor league report: April 12-14

From staff and wire reports:

Fresno (AAA Pacific Coast League):

Friday: When Raudy Read‘s first homer of the season rocketed its way down the left line, it appeared as if the Fresno Grizzlies (5-3) might be the team to deal the Las Vegas Aviators (8-1) their first loss in a sparkling new ballpark. Trailing 7-0 after four innings, Read’s blast put the Grizzlies on top 8-7 in the eighth. But the Aviators rallied for two in the bottom half on an RBI double by Corban Joseph to tie it, before a wild pitch did Fresno in, losing 9-8 in their first game at Las Vegas Ballpark.

Las Vegas opened the game with a 3-1-2-1 line score in innings one through four, only to see the Grizzlies respond with a 2-2-3-1 line during innings five through eight. In addition to Read, Andrew StevensonCarter KieboomCollin Cowgill and Alec Keller all enjoyed multi-hit games for Fresno; Kieboom and Read drove in multiple runs. Eric Campbell (2-run), Mark Payton (solo) and Beau Taylor (solo) all took to the sky with home runs for the Aviators, who improved to 4-0 in their new home digs.

In dropping consecutive one-run games (5-4 at Salt Lake on Thursday), the Grizzlies fell to 2-2 in such games in the season’s early going. This series is four games in the Summerlin area of Las Vegas through Monday. 

Top Performers: Fresno Grizzlies (Washington Nationals)

• SS Carter Kieboom (2-3, 3 RBI, 2 BB)

• C Raudy Read (2-4, HR, 2 RBI, 2 R)

• RF Alec Keller (3-5, RBI, 2 R)

• LF Andrew Stevenson (3-5, R)

• CF Collin Cowgill (2-5, RBI)

Top Performers: Las Vegas Aviators (Oakland Athletics)

• 1B Seth Brown (2-3, 2 2B, 2 RBI, 2 R)

• DH Corban Joseph (2-3, 2B, 2 RBI, R, BB)

• HOME RUNS: LF Mark Payton (5), 3B Eric Campbell (1), Beau Taylor (1)

ON THAT FRES-NOTE: With Friday’s comeback,make it twice in 51 weeks that Fresno has rallied from a 7-0 deficit to lead Las Vegas, winning once and losing once. On April 19, 2018, Fresno trailed Las Vegas 7-0 in the seventh inning, before winning 10-8. How much has changed since then? The MLB affiliate matchup between the two franchises is now Washington Nationals vs. Oakland Athletics; last season it was Houston Astros vs. New York Mets. The Grizzlies dropped their orange and black color scheme and refreshed their logos after the 2018 season to the current red and black look. The Las Vegas 51s were in their final campaign, before rebranding to the Las Vegas Aviators, just in time to move into brand new Las Vegas Ballpark in the Summerlin neighborhood for this season, eschewing venerable Cashman Field which had been the franchise’s home since 1983.

Saturday: Despite Yadiel Hernandez‘s club-leading third home run (opposite field solo shot in the second inning), the Fresno Grizzlies (5-4) dropped their third straight game on this road trip by a 6-2 final. The Las Vegas Aviators (9-1) have yet to lose during their ballpark-opening seven-game homestand, with two more games remaining against the Grizz.

Vegas jumped out to a 3-0 first inning lead thanks to a Seth Brown RBI double and a Corban Joseph two-run triple. Mark Payton, who already has 15 RBI in 10 games, added an RBI single in the second for the home side. Fresno’s other run came on an Alec Keller RBI groundout in the third, after Taylor Gushue led off with a double. Gushue stroked two doubles on the night. 

9-1 is best start in Las Vegas Triple-A history (since 1983).

Top Performers: Fresno Grizzlies (Washington Nationals)

• LF Yadiel Hernandez (1-3, Solo HR, BB, SB)

• C Taylor Gushue (2-4, 2 2B, R)

• RHP Jimmy Cordero (2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K)

• LHP Vidal Nuno (2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K)

Top Performers: Las Vegas Aviators (Oakland Athletics)

• LF Mark Payton (3-4, 2B, RBI, R, SB)

• RHP Tanner Anderson (6.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K)

• RF Skye Bolt (2-4, 2B, 2 R, SB)

ON THAT FRES-NOTE: Fresno 1B/3B/OF Brandon Snyder was born in Las Vegas, despite growing up in Virginia. Why? Snyder’s father, former professional pitcher Brian Snyder, was playing with the San Diego Padres organization in 1986 for the Triple-A Las Vegas Stars. The elder Snyder appeared in 17 MLB games for Seattle and Oakland before retiring as a player following the 1990 season. Brandon, a first round pick of Baltimore in 2005 (13th overall), has Major League time with the Orioles, Rangers, Red Sox, Braves and Rays.

Sunday: On Sunday at Las Vegas, Jacob Wilson collected the first multi-homer game of the season for Fresno, and the first two-homer game in the history of Las Vegas Ballpark. With a pair of two-run homers (2nd & 4th innings), Wilson was the second Grizz to drive in four runs in a game in 2019, joining Matt Reynolds on April 6 at home against Reno (grand slam). Fresno’s 6-5 victory made them the first visiting club to win at Las Vegas Ballpark; the homestanding Aviators (9-2) had been 5-0 at their new home following a sweep of Sacramento April 9-11, and two wins over the Grizzlies (6-4) on Friday and Saturday.

With Fresno leading 5-0 in the fourth, Las Vegas tied the game with an RBI single from Beau Taylor and Skye Bolt’s first career Triple-A grand slam. Andrew Stevenson‘s bases loaded walk in the sixth inning put the Grizzlies back in front for good; Carter Kieboom also chipped in an RBI single in the third as part of a two-hit day, scoring Stevenson after a lead off triple. Kieboom’s four multi-hit games tie him for the team lead with Wilson, and Alec Keller.

Following Vegas’s fourth inning outburst, the Fresno bullpen strung together five scoreless innings (2 H, 1 BB, 7 K), courtesy of right-handers Derek Self (2.0 IP), Dakota Bacus (2.0 IP) and Austin Adams. Adams tidied things up with a perfect ninth inning and two swinging strikeouts to end it, earning his first save of the season, improving Fresno to 3-2 in one-run games, and 4-1 in day games.

Top Performers: Fresno Grizzlies (Washington Nationals)

• 3B Jacob Wilson (3-4, 2 HR, 4 RBI)

• RHP Derek Self (2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K)

• RHP Dakota Bacus (2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K)

Top Performers: Las Vegas Aviators (Oakland Athletics)

• RF Skye Bolt (2-4, GS, 4 RBI)

ON THAT FRES-NOTE: Thanks to the Las Vegas three-game sweep of Sacramento April 9-11 to open brand new Las Vegas Ballpark, Sunday’s Grizz victory gives Fresno the first visiting win in each of the last two new facilities to open in the PCL. On April 28, 2014, the San Francisco Giants-affiliated Grizzlies defeated the El Paso Chihuahuas 2-1 in the inaugural game at Southwest University Park.

Harrisburg (AA Eastern League):


The Senators continued their hot start to the season with a 4-2 win over Bowie on Friday night. Drew Ward hit a grand slam with two outs in the third to give the Senators a 4-2 lead which was enough. Sterling Sharp went five innings to earn his first win. James Bourque pitched the final two innings for his first save. The Sens managed just four hits, but it was enough. With the win the Senators move to 8-1 on the season, their best start in their modern history. Bowie falls to 2-6 with the loss.

Turning Point
Trailing 2-0 in the third, the Senators received a one-out hit from Brian Mejia and then with two outs, back-to-back walks to Chuck Taylor and Austin Davidson. Bowie starter Hunter Harvey went to 2-2 on Drew Ward before he drilled the 2-2 pitch over the fence in left for his third home run on the season, giving the Senators a 4-2 lead.

On Capitol Hill
Sterling Sharp went five innings and allowed a run in each of the first two innings, but nothing further, to earn the win. He scattered seven hits while striking out three. Mario Sanchez worked in a game for the first time since last Saturday, tossing a perfect sixth. Ronald Pena pitched the seventh, allowed a single, but struck out the final batter of the inning to end the frame. James Bourque tossed the eighth and ninth innings to earn the save. He struck out three, allowed a hit and walked two in the outing.

With the Gavel
The Senators had just four hits. The grand slam by Ward, a double by Tres Barrera, and singles by Brian Mejia and Ian Sagdal. The offense cooled off Friday night, but the pitching picked them up. 

Ward’s grand slam was the second on the season for the Sens. Chuck Taylor hit a slam against Bowie on April 4. Rhett Wiseman had his seven-game hit streak snapped, though he hit the ball hard. The 8-1 start for the Senators is their best record after nine games in their modern history. With their third straight strong outing, the Senators team ERA is under 3.00 at 2.92. 


The Senators won their sixth straight game with a 10-4 win over Bowie Saturday afternoon. Drew Ward hit a grand slam for the second straight game and Rhett Wiseman and Zach Collier chipped in with each hitting a two-run home run in the third inning in allowing the Sens to coast to an 10-4 win. Tyler Mapes started and earned the win, his first this season. The Sens scored a season-high ten runs and pounded out 13 hits. Harrisburg is now 9-1 while Bowie falls to 2-7.

Turning Point
For the second straight game the turning point in the game was a grand slam by Drew Ward. With the game scoreless, the Senators loaded the bases with one out and Ward batting against Dillon Tate. Drew moved ahead 2-1 before clobbering the grand slam down the right field line. The Senators went on to hit two more home runs in the inning, but the grand slam sent them on their way.

On Capitol Hill
Tyler Mapes started and pitched five innings for the win. He ran into trouble in the 4th but pitched out of it allowing just three runs after Bowie had put the first three on base. Jacob Condra-Bogan tossed two scoreless innings allowing just a hit. Joan Baez pitched the final two frames allowing a run. 

With the Gavel
After going quietly in the first two innings the Senators offense exploded in the third. Drew Ward had the first of three hits with the grand slam. Rhett Wiseman had the second of his two hits with his two-run home run. Zach Collier hit is first home run, a two-run shot in the 3rd. Luis GarciaIan Sagdal and Tres Barrera all had two hits. 

Ward’s grand slam was the third on the season for the Senators. The ten runs are a season-high for the Sens. The three home runs in the 3rd inning are a season-high in a game for the Sens. The two errors committed are also a season-high. They had committed just two errors in their first nine games before today.

Sunday: Sunday afternoon the Senators had their six-game winning streak snapped by the Bowie Baysox with a 5-4 loss in 12 innings. Harrisburg led 3-0 into the bottom of the sixth inning but couldn’t hold the lead. The Sens scored a run in the first but left the bases loaded. They tacked on a run in the 2nd but left two in scoring position. Rhett Wisemancontinued his scorching start with a solo HR in the 6th to give the Sens their 3-0 lead. Bowie tallied two in the sixth and left the tying runs in scoring position. They tied the game in the ninth on a solo HR by Ademar Rifaela off Aaron Barrett. The teams traded extra inning runs in the 10th, didn’t score in the 11th, before Bowie scored the free run in the 12th to walk-off winners. The Sens drop to 9-2 while Bowie improved to 3-6.

Turning Point
With one out in the first inning the Senators loaded the bases for Spencer Kieboom. Kieboom hit a pop up into no mans down the right field line that dropped, but Drew Ward was forced at second while a run scored. Rhett Wisemanwas walked but Tyler Goeddel struck out to end the inning. The Senators twice had the bases loaded but scored just a single run.

On Capitol Hill
Ben Braymer started and was outstanding. He pitched six innings allowing two runs on four hits. He breezed through the first five and didn’t allow his first hit until there was one out in the fifth. Taylor Gulbeau pitched a scoreless seventh. Aaron Barrett went two innings for the first time and allowed a game tying solo home run. Ronald Pena pitched two innings including a scoreless 11th even with the free runner. Jordan Mills pitched the 12th and took the loss, allowing the free runner to score.

With the Gavel
Adrian Sanchez had two hits for the Senators. Rhett Wiseman homered, his sixth on the season as he continues his hot start. 


  • The loss snapped the Sens six-game winning streak.
  • The Senators missed in their attempt to sweep their first four-game series since August 2011. 
  • This was the Sens first extra inning game this season and the longest game of the season.

On Deck
The Senators begin a three-game series Monday night in Altoona. Harrisburg sends RH Wil Crowe to the mound against RH James Marvel for Altoona.

Potomac (High-A Carolina League):

Friday: The Potomac Nationals (4-5) ended a four-game losing streak on Friday night, using three doubles in a four-run fourth to defeat the Winston-Salem Dash (4-5) by a score of 6-3.

Jackson Tetreault  (W, 2-0) continued his solid start to the season, picking up the win for 5.0 innings of four-hit, one-run ball. The righty fanned four and used early run support to establish a rhythm.

For the second straight night, the P-Nats jumped ahead on the Dash in the first inning. Jack Sundberg  led off the game with a single, Cole Freeman  followed with a walk, and Telmito Agustin  got Potomac on the board with an RBI double off Blake Battenfield (L, 0-1). Aldrem Corredor  brought home Freeman with a run-scoring groundout, and Tetreault had a 2-0 lead before he threw a pitch.

Winston-Salem pushed a run across in the third inning on Carlos Perez‘s double and Luis Robert‘s RBI single. It marked the 15th RBI of the season for Robert, tops in the Carolina League.

The P-Nats answered back in the fourth as Osvaldo Abreu  catalyzed a four-run inning with a leadoff single. Omar Meregildo Anderson Franco  and Corredor each doubled, with Corredor’s two-out two-bagger bringing home two runs to make the score 6-2.

AJ Bogucki allowed one run in two innings of work, with only a Perez double and Jameson Fisher RBI single in the seventh on his ledger. Steven Fuentes  got the final six outs, allowing a run in the eighth on a pair of walks and a hit batsman but striking out Robert as the tying run to end Winston-Salem’s last threat.

Saturday: The Potomac Nationals (4-6) were stymied by Kyle Kubat and the Winston Salem Dash (5-5) on Saturday night, falling 4-0 at BB&T Ballpark.

Kubat (W, 1-0) went 6.0 innings of shutout ball, allowing only a pair of singles and striking out five to earn his first win of the year. He outdueled fellow lefty Nick Raquet  (L, 1-1), who pitched well for the P-Nats but fell behind early and never got the run support to get back in the game.

The Dash jumped ahead right away in the first inning, as leadoff man Luis Robert hit a double and came home on a run-scoring double play off the bat of Jameson Fisher. The lone run in the first inning would turn out to be enough for Kubat, who allowed harmless hits to Anderson Franco  and Omar Meregildo for his lone mistakes on the night.

Winston-Salem added two to their lead in the fifth, getting a leadoff single from Jordan George and subsequent hit from Johan Cruz to put runners at the corners. Raquet coaxed another double play from Daniel Gonzalez, but George came home to make the score 2-0. Luis Robert re-started the rally with a two-out single and scored from first on Nick Madrigal‘s RBI double to extend the lead to 3-0.

Carlos Acevedo  pitched the final three frames for Potomac, allowing one more run in the seventh inning when Robert tripled off the right field wall and Madrigal brought him home with his fourth hit of the night. Robert continued his hot hitting to start the 2019 season, finishing a home run shy of the cycle and upping his league-leading average to .475.

Jose Nin fanned four in two hitless innings of relief for the Dash, and Will Kincanon got the final three outs to lock down the Winston-Salem win.

Sunday: Malvin Pena  took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning to earn his first Carolina League win, and the Potomac Nationals (5-6) played their most complete game with an 8-3 win over the Winston-Salem Dash (5-6) on Sunday afternoon.

Peña (W, 1-1) retired the first 13 batters he faced, and ultimately struck out nine over 5.1 innings to help his team split their four-game series in Winston-Salem before continuing their weeklong opening road trip. He led 4-0 before he threw a pitch thanks to some early production from his offense.

The P-Nats’ first two batters were retired by Winston-Salem starter Cristian Castillo (L, 0-1), but began a two-out rally with three straight singles from Telmito Agustin Aldrem Corredor , and Jakson Reetz Nick Banks , who had missed the previous two games due to a hit-by-pitch on Thursday, promptly put Potomac ahead with an opposite-field grand slam over the left field wall.

It was the first homer of the season for Banks, and only the second home run for the P-Nats in 11 games this season. But David Masters  made sure that the wait for the third home run wouldn’t be as long, lifting a fly ball out to left in the third to extend the lead to 5-0.

Peña would take the early lead and run with it, and didn’t allow a baserunner until a one-out walk to Tate Blackman in the fifth. JJ Muno ended the no-hit bid with a clean single in the sixth, and Nick Madrigal‘s two-run triple later in the inning marked the end of the day for the young righty. Peña ultimately allowed three runs on three hits before being relieved by Frankie Bartow .

Bartow retired all eight batters he faced, and Masters added a solo home run in the eighth for his team’s first multi-homer game of the season. Leading 6-3 in the ninth, the P-Nats got a sacrifice fly from Agustin and an RBI double from Reetz to extend their cushion to 8-3. Jeremy McKinney  got the final three outs to seal the Potomac win.

Hagerstown (Low-A South Atlantic League):

Friday: Postponed.

Saturday: The Hagerstown Suns split a doubleheader with the Asheville Tourists, losing game one 5-1, but winning game two 5-2 at Municipal Stadium Saturday.

Game 1

Asheville erupted with a trio of runs in the fifth. Hunter Stovall led off the frame with a double. A couple of batters later, Will Golsan brought his teammate home with a single to center field. The shortstop, Terrin Vavra legged out an RBI triple and Grant Lavigne capped off the frame with a sac fly to left.

Power came early for the Tourists. In the second, John Cresto hit a leadoff home run to left on the first pitch from Suns starter Francys Peguero (L, 0-1). The Tourists tacked on an additional run in the third via a sac fly from Vavra.

In the fourth frame, Hagerstown saw their first home run hit at Municipal Stadium. Gilbert Lara did the honors with a two-out solo blast over the left field wall.

Nick Kennedy (W, 1-0) earned the win for Asheville with two innings of scoreless relief. Peguero went five innings in his second start with six strikeouts but gave up five earned runs in the game one loss.

Game 2

Hagerstown loaded the bases in the first frame again in game two, but this time, they pounced on Tourists’ starter Riley Pint (L, 0-1). Pint was lifted after giving up four runs through just 0.2 innings of work, as he struggled to find the strikezone, walking six batters in that time.

The first two batters Pint faced, Cody Wilson  and Gage Canning, walked and came around to score. Later, both Jacob Rhinesmith and Pablo O’Connor walked and scored as well. The Suns (4-6) did not have a hit in the first frame, but plated four runs. Jamori Blash  hit a sacrifice fly to right plate Rhinesmith, and everyone else scored on a free pass or a wild pitch. The tough-luck frame for the Tourists (5-5) put Hagerstown in front 4-1.

O’Connor led off the next scoring opportunity for Hagerstown with a one out double in the third. He came around after a Jamori Blash single.

Jackson Stoeckinger (W, 1-0) worked three innings, allowing just one earned run on a deep ball from Daniel Montano .

After Stoeckinger was lifted, Jhonatan German (S, 2) closed the door, spinning two scoreless frames.

Asheville would jump closer, scoring in the top of the second after Leif Strom  became a little wild. He walked Montano to start the inning and Montano scored after a Will Golsansingle with one out. 

Sunday: The Hagerstown Suns won 11-3 with a salvo of five home runs against the Asheville Tourists at Municipal Stadium Sunday afternoon.

A trio of home runs from Hagerstown (5-6) sealed the deal in the seventh. Israel Pineda smacked his first home run of the year to lead-off the frame. The first baseman, KJ Harrison reached on an error. That error set the scene for Gilbert Lara. Lara lifted a ball over the center field wall for two runs. Jamori Blash represented the crescendo in this 7th inning symphony. Blash hit a home run to right-center field, his second of the afternoon.

Hagerstown showed off the power in the third with a pair of two-run blasts.Harrisoncrushed a ball to left-center after a Pinedasingle for a 4-0 advantage. Not to be outdone, Blash nailed his own two-run blast scoring himself and Pablo O’Connor .

The Suns used a pair of doubles to score two runs in their first inning at the plate. Gage Canning earned his 10th hit of the year with a double and later scored on a double from Harrison. The Hub City’s starting catcher, Pineda batted in a run with a groundout.

The Suns’ pitching staff held the Asheville Tourists (5-6) in check allowing only four hits and striking out seven.

Tomas Alastre (W, 1-1) led the pitching charge with five innings of one-run ball.

Asheville scored once in the fifth as Coco Montes worked a bases-loaded walk. Two more runs crossed in the eighth on Daniel Jipping ‘s RBI fielder’s choice and Daniel Montano ‘s RBI double.

Nick Bush (L, 1-1) suffered his first loss after being lit up for seven runs in 3.2 innings.

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