Top storiesBrandon Weeden selected in first round: It wouldn't be an NFL draft without some connection to baseball, and Thursday that honor belonged to Brandon Weeden. The Oklahoma State Quarterback was drafted 22nd overall by Cleveland in a move that surprised many. He was drafted in the second round by the Yankees in 2002 as a pitcher, and he actually showed some promise early. However, he hit a wall as he reached the full season levels and decided to go back to school to play Quarterback. One notable thing in Weeden's career? He was traded from the Yankees to the Dodgers as part of the package that brought them Kevin Brown. Cleveland now faces the challenge of acclimating a 28 year old rookie into an offense that has not been productive in recent seasons. The 2002 second round features 19 players that reached the majors including Jon Lester, Brian McCann, Joey Votto and Jonathan Broxton.
Eldred gets the call: A night after hitting his 13th home run of the season, veteran slugger Brad Eldred was called up to Detroit to get another chance in the majors. The Tigers released veteran Brandon Inge to make room on the roster. Inge battled injuries this spring, and when Miguel Cabrera moved across the diamond to third base, he was without a position. They attempted to move him to second base, but when he continued to not hit, they knew they needed to part ways. Eldred is expected to get a lot of at bats as Detroit's DH.
Thornburg socks home run: For the second time in as many days, a pitcher has hit a home run. This time, it was Tyler Thornburg at AA Huntsville. It was his first professional hit, and he made it count; the three run shot proved to be the winning run in a 5-4 Huntsville win. Unlike the Dylan Owen and Matt Harvey home runs earlier in the week, this one comes as no surprise. Thornburg was a position player on his off days in college at Charleston Southern, and he hit 24 home runs in his NCAA career. Naturally, hitting skills among pitchers will decline over the course of a career since they're not doing it every day like position players, but last night Thornburg showed he still has it.
Paxton gets in control: Over his last two starts that lasted a combined seven innings, James Paxton walked 13 batters. That came after a fast start to his season when he struck out 17 and only walked one. He got back to throwing strikes Thursday against Tennessee, striking out nine and only walking two in six innings. The only run he allowed was unearned, and the start was his longest of the season. Thanks to Jackson's big three starters and some solid depth, they have the best staff in the league by far with a 2.44 ERA and 1.15 WHIP.
High Desert, San Jose trade shutouts in doubleheader: San Jose typically fields winning teams with great pitching, but High Desert's squads are rarely known for that. Of course when they met for a doubleheader Thursday, they combined to score nine runs in two shutouts. San Jose won game one 3-0 behind Jake Snodgrass, a big lefty from Austin Peay drafted in 2011. He's done a great job throwing strikes this year, recording 16 strikeouts to just two walks in 22.1 innings. Josh Osich picked up the save. The Mavericks turned the tables on the Giants in game two behind Anthony Fernandez's complete game effort. They won by a score of 6-0, and the offense was led by a pair of two run home runs.
Head's hitting streak snapped at 19: As far as I know, Miles Head had the longest active hitting streak in minor league baseball, but it ended Thursday at the hands of Bakersfield. Blaze starter Tony Cingrani was nearly untouchable through six innings, allowing only one hit while striking out eight. The entire Stockton offense struggled, scoring only once on three hits. Oakland acquired Head from Boston in the Andrew Bailey trade, and he's a bat to keep an eye on. He has a good feel for making contact and could develop above average power. He's spent a lot of time playing first base though, and it might be difficult for his bat to truly profile there.
On tap todayMiLB.TV schedule
Durham has chance to end losing streak
Betances hopes to throw more strikes
Martin Perez looks to build momentum
Walker makes another start
Workman, Font look for success in Carolina League
Portillo hopes to continue hot start
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MiLB Records Tracker
Billy Hamilton, Bakersfield Blaze
Current: 131 stolen bases in 109 games (1.20 per game)
Pace: 159 stolen bases in 133 games
Jurickson Profar, Frisco RoughRiders
50 game on-base streak (not on-going)