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TWitM: Kris Bubic’s masterpiece

This Week in the Minors: Kris Bubic has us at a loss for words.

Kris Bubic took a no-hitter deep into his start this week.
Ryan Griffith

‘This Week in the Minors’ 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, August 12 through Sunday, August 18.

AAA Omaha Storm Chasers (53-72, 13 games back)

schedule | roster

Eric Skoglund pitched seven innings on Sunday, allowing two runs on four hits. He struck out three and walked one, and threw just 92 pitches.

Center fielder Nick Heath stole three bases on Sunday to bring his season total to an absurd 60, which leads all of professional baseball. Heath was on base a bunch this week, with five hits in his six games, but also six walks.

I also want to take a moment to observe a managerial milestone: Brian Poldberg’s 400th managerial win. If you don’t like Brian Poldberg, I might not like you.

AA Northwest Arkansas Naturals (51-72 overall; 20-35 in second half; 11.5 games back)

schedule | roster

The best pitching performance of the week for the Naturals was probably J.C. Cloney, who threw just 73 pitches on his way to seven shutout innings. Cloney allowed just a single, did not walk anyone, and struck out five. He did not factor into the decision in the eventual 3-2 Naturals win. Daniel Tillo came in with a 2-0 lead, gave up two runs, but held on to the tie long enough for a 10th-inning win. The ultimate vulture win - Tillo was credited with a W, but also given the blown save.

Righty prospect Brady Singer struck out nine in seven shutout innings, allowing four hits and one walk. He threw 91 pitches, the 14th time in 23 starts this season he has thrown 90 or more.

Outfielder Khalil Lee hustled to reach an impressive milestone this week: he stole seven (!) bases to become just the third player in all of the Minors to reach 50 steals this year. Nick Heath, of course, is one of the others, and center fielder Johnny Davis of the Guerreros de Oaxaca in the Mexican League is the other. Davis was put on the IL on Friday, so his stolen base total might stop at its current 54.

A-Adv. Wilmington Blue Rocks (72-52 overall; 28-27 in second half)

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It would be hard for Kris Bubic to follow up last week’s 9-inning complete game in which he allowed just one run on three hits, and struck out 11. It would be understandable if, after that 111-pitch game, Bubic came back to Earth a bit in his next start, maybe put up like six innings with a run or two allowed. We would get it. BUT! Kris Bubic managed to follow that incredible start up with... even better one. On Thursday, Bubic repeated the 11 strikeouts in nine innings, but this time allowed zero runs and just one hit and one walk. The one hit didn’t come until the 9th inning. And he did all that in 99 pitches. Bubic turned 22 yesterday, and was also named to the MLB Pipeline Prospect Team of the Week.

Low-A Lexington Legends (61-64 overall; 24-32 in second half)

schedule | roster

Righty Charlie Neuweiler punched out 10, a career high, in his six-inning start on Thursday. Two unearned runs scored in the first, but then no other runs scored against Lexington the rest of that win. The game was closed out by right-handed reliever Brandon Marklund, who has not allowed a run in his last seven appearances (10 23 innings).

RHP Carlos Hernandez started the next game with five strong innings, with just one run allowed via solo dinger, and eight strikeouts and one walk. Jon Heasley, also a righty, pitched five shutout innings on Sunday.

Outfielder Rudy Martin was solid this week, with hits in every game adding up to an 8-for-20 total. These included two doubles, a triple, and two home runs. Martin struggled in 62 games at Wilmington before being transferred down to Lexington. He is faring better as a Legend.

Shortstop Jeison Guzman also wound up with eight hits, including a triple and his 20th double on the season. Guzman is just 20 years old, and has played in 109 games this season, up from 85 last season.

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Did you go to any Minor League games this week? Who stood out to you? Any wacky ballpark promotions?