From timely home runs to sustained solid outings on the mound, all four of the Cardinals’ minor league affiliates were in action Thursday.
These are some of Cardinals minor leagues notable performances on Thursday:
Second Baseman Nolan Gorman, Class AAA Memphis: The 21-year-old hit a homer for the second night in a row when he pulled a 1-1 pitch down right field during Memphis’ 3-2 loss to Charlotte. The solo shot was his fourth homer of the season. Gorman has heated up on the plate in his last five games as he’s 11-to-24 (.458) with four homers and four RBIs in that span.
First baseman Juan Yepez, Class AAA Memphis: Like Gorman, Yepez found a groove in the Batte’s box. Yepez hit a solo homer — his fourth of the 2022 season — in the Redbirds’ 3-2 loss to Charlotte. The solo blast comes one night after he hit two three-run homers and drove in six. The 24-year-old is batting .381 in his last six games with Memphis.
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Third Baseman Osvaldo Tovalin, Class Low-A Palm Beach: With his team two outs from not being a hit, Tovalin did more than just get the PB cards in the hit column. After the first two batters in the inning got to base with hit by pitches, Tovalin hit a three-run, one-out walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of Palm Beach’s 3-1 win over Daytona, the Palm Beachs accounted for only hit at night. Tovalin bats .375 with .983 OPS in his first six games early in the season.
Right-handed pitcher Inohan Paniagua, Low-A Palm Beach class: Paniagua, the Palm Beach opening day starter, pitched six innings and conceded one hit, one run, one walk and hit six on 83 pitches — 54 of which were strikes. The only run the right-hander allowed was an RBI triple in the fourth inning from designated Yerlin Confidan, who overshot midfielder Jay Allen III after he reached base through an error. In his first two starts of the season, Paniagua owns a 1.80 ERA in 10 working innings.
Right-hander Cory Thompson, Class AA Springfield: In his second game of the season, Thompson gave up two hits in 2 1/3 innings and knocked out five batsmen during his relief appearance. Thompson threw 29 pitches (23 strikes) during the S-Cards’ 3-2 loss to Arkansas. He has logged 4 1/3 innings in his two relief appearances this season and not allowed a run.
The 27-year-old right-hander was originally drafted by the Reds in the fifth round of the 2013 draft. Last year was his first year in the Cardinals’ farm system. He appeared in 17 games with Class High-A Peoria and nine with Springfield. Thompson has a career 3.33 ERA over 210 2/3 innings in the minor leagues, where he has made all 140 appearances outside of the bullpen.
Right-handed pitcher Logan Gragg, Class High-A Peoria: Gragg, the Cardinals’ eight-round pick from the 2019 draft, threw four innings of relief and allowed a run while notching six strikeouts in the Chiefs’ 5-2 win over the Loons. Since making his pro debut in 2019, the 23-year-old has appeared in 44 games on the mound (28 starts) and logged 149 2/3 innings. He has a 3.97 ERA in his three seasons as a minor league player with the Cardinals. A year ago he pitched 99 innings and finished the season with a 4.45 ERA.
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