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TWitM: Raul Mondesi hits two grand slams

The shortstop’s home runs to center and right on back-to-back nights were the first grand slams of his pro career.

Shortstop Raul Mondesi is slugging .544 for Triple-A Omaha.
Minda Haas Kuhlmann

This is our weekly look at notable performances from all over the system, from big-name prospects and less heralded guys alike. The mission is to answer this simple question: "Who had a good week?"

Today, we’ll cover results from Monday, July 3 through Sunday, July 9.

AAA Omaha Storm Chasers (40-48)

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Thanks in large part to losing eight of nine to division rival Colorado Springs last week, the Storm Chasers find themselves deep in last place and 14.5 games out of first.

Shortstop Raul Mondesi drove in 11 runs for the Chasers this week, thanks largely to grand slams in back-to-back games at Iowa. They were the first and second grand slams of his career. He had also hit a solo dinger earlier in the week, giving him 10 on the season with Omaha. However, Mondesi left Sunday’s game early, having evidently tweaked something trying to avoid getting hit by a pitch.

First baseman Ryan O’Hearn extended his season home run total to a team-leading 15 this week, with a pair of solo shots.

RHP Yender Caramo pitched his best game of the season at New Orleans on Wednesday, striking out three and walking zero in eight innings. One unearned run was allowed, following a throwing error by Bubba Starling. That run was scored by former Royal Christian Colon, now in Triple-A with the Marlins organization.

AA Northwest Arkansas Naturals (48-39)

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Catcher Nick Dini homered and doubled in his 8-for-21 week. Since his May 31 promotion to Northwest Arkansas, Dini is hitting .373/.443/.482.

Anderson Miller hit his first home run at the Double-A level this week, along with a double and six singles. The left-handed outfielder is also off to a strong start at his new level, with a .308/.357/.410 through 10 games with the Naturals.

We continue to keep a keen eye on reliever Richard Lovelady, though his superhuman 25.2-inning shutout streak ended on Monday. He pitched three perfect innings on Thursday.

A-Adv. Wilmington Blue Rocks (47-41)

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A trio of Wilmington starting pitchers went deep into games this week.

Left-handed Cristian Castillo, a native of Mexico, dominated over eight innings on Sunday. He allowed just three hits - all singles - and no walks, and struck out six. That is good for a Game Score of 82, the best of the season for Castillo.

Right-hander A.J. Puckett also pitched eight innings in his start this week. On Wednesday, Puckett allowed two runs on just three hits. He struck out seven and did not walk anyone. It was the longest outing of his professional career, which began in 2016 after the Royals drafted him in the second round out of Pepperdine University.

On Thursday, RHP Andres Machado pitched 7.1 solid innings. One run scored against him, on a solo homer. He did not walk anyone, and struck out three. Last week, Machado was featured for his start in which he struck out 14.

Low-A Lexington Legends (44-42)

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Lefty Andre Davis pitched well on Friday, going six innings with seven strikeouts and one walk. He surrendered two runs on one hit. It was the third-best start of the year for the 2015 draftee out of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff.

RHP Jace Vines, last year’s 4th round draft pick, pitched the first six innings of baseball that Lexington played on Thursday. However, it was not a start - it was the resumption of a game that had started and been suspended the previous night. Vines struck out seven and didn’t walk anyone, and gave up three runs on seven hits.

A note on reliever Justin Camp: it has been a little bit since he has given up a run. He was bumped up to High-A Wilmington for four appearances in June, and gave up two earned runs in the first of those. Since then he has pitched 15.2 scoreless innings in eight appearances, while moving back down to Lexington.

Third baseman Emmanuel Rivera powered up at the plate this week, with a 1.258 OPS in the (small sample!) time frame. He homered once, tripled twice, and doubled thrice. Rivera, who turned 21 on June 29, in triples (5) and RBI (47).

Outfielder Marten Gasparini went 10-for-22 this week, with two doubles and his 7th homer of 2017. He struck out seven times, and drew no walks.