This is our weekly look at notable performances from all over the system, from big-name prospects and less heralded guys alike. Today's column covers results from Monday, July 11 through Sunday, July 17.
AAA Omaha Storm Chasers (40-53)
The Triple-A all-star game was on Wednesday, so the Chasers had a short week. Reliever Andrew Edwards was the sole representative for Omaha, and he pitched a third of an inning.
A tip of the cap to Irving Falu, who now has more hits than anyone else in Omaha franchise history. On Friday, he collected hit #662 to tie Jed Hansen, then the record-setting #663 drove in two runs in the Storm Chasers' dramatic 9th-inning rally. Hansen, for the record, collected his 662 hits for Omaha between 1996 and 2004, and was profiled on this site back in 2012 as a "forgotten Royal."
Right-handed starter Luke Farrell pitched seven shutout innings on Saturday, with nine strikeouts and just two hits surrendered. It was Farrell's third start back from the disabled list, and his best game of the season.
This week, the Royals signed right-handed reliever Edward Mujica. The former MLB All-Star joined Omaha this week and picked up a save in his first game as a Chaser.
AA Northwest Arkansas Naturals (43-50 overall; 14-9 in second half)
Left-hander Eric Skoglund (3rd round, 2014) pitched his best game of the season on Wednesday, with just two hits and one run allowed in seven innings. He struck out six and walked one. This was the third time Skoglund has completed seven innings in 2016.
22-year-old RHP Josh Staumont made his Double-A debut on Sunday, going five innings with a pair of strikeouts and four walks. He allowed a solo homer but no other runs.
Left fielder Alfredo Escalera-Maldonado also debuted for Northwest Arkansas this week, going 6-for-15 with two doubles and three stolen bases.
Second baseman Corey Toups hit his second and third home runs at the AA level this week, along with half a dozen singles. He also stole two bases.
Reid Redman was moved up to NWArk as he comes back from last year's Tommy John surgery. He had pitched in just nine games for the Naturals before getting hurt in May of 2015. In his three games this week, he totaled 6.1 innings and allowed two earned runs, both on solo homers.
RHP Jake Junis (29th round, 2011) allowed seven hits in his six innings on Thursday, but none scored. He struck out four. In his 17 starts for the Naturals this season, Junis has struck out just about a batter per inning: 97 Ks in 97.2 innings.
A-Adv. Wilmington Blue Rocks (34-59 overall; 7-17 in second half)
Outfielder Anderson Miller (3rd round, 2015) was promoted to Wilmington this week. He played 43 games for Lexington in both 2015 and 2016. Last year for the Legends, he hit .260/.319/.355, and in 2016 he improved those numbers to .284/.376/.432.
First baseman Samir Duenez socked three dingers this week, and drove in six runs in six games. Duenez just turned 20 a month or so ago, and is hitting very well since his June 23rd promotion.
Left-hander Foster Griffin (1st round, 2014) had his best game since joining the Blue Rocks. In six innings, he struck out five, walked one, and allowed one run on five hits.
A Lexington Legends (36-56 overall; 11-12 in second half)
On Tuesday, right-hander Scott Blewett (2nd round, 2014) pitched one of his best games of 2016. In seven innings, he struck out 10, walked only one, and allowed a pair of runs on four hits. And he was efficient, throwing only 79 pitches.
Two weeks ago, reliever Sam Lewis was mentioned here as he returned from a Tommy John surgery which wiped out his entire 2015 season. He still has not allowed an earned run since joining the Legends, but one unearned one scored on him Friday. Aside from that unfortunate run, Lewis was great, striking out five of the eight batters he faced in two innings.
A.J. Puckett (2nd round, 2016) pitched five scoreless innings on Thursday, striking out five and walking two. He allowed four hits.
Outfielder Ben Johnson (11th round, 2015) hit in all six games this week. Among his 10 hits were three doubles and a solo home run, his fourth of the year.
* * * * *
-Chase Vallot is still rehabbing in Arizona. He hit two home runs, two doubles, and a single. He also played four of his five games behind the plate, as opposed to his first week there when he was strictly used as designated hitter. (As a reminder, Vallot is recovering from taking a fastball directly to the face. Here is video, if you want to see.)
-This is the weekly space where a Kyle Zimmer update would go: _________________. Zimmer, of course, has been on the shelf with an unnamed arm issue almost all summer, with just 5.2 innings to his name at two levels.