Tim Anderson was injured earlier today in a rather stupid way. The Barons were wrapping up a series at Cubs affiliate Tennessee Smokies. Overnight, a valve on a sprinkler broke, resulting in significant flooding on the infield, including around the second base bag. The game was an early start, 12pm local, but the start was delayed about 20 minutes. The field was judged to be playable. Anderson led off the game with a walk and Joey DeMichele hit a rocket into the gap, a hit Anderson should have been able to score on easily. As he was rounding second, Anderson fell to the ground, tried to get up, couldn't and then crawled back to second base. It sounds like it was a foot or ankle injury but there hasn't been any official word. He eventually left the field under his own power but the Smokies manager pulled his team from the field and another significant delay ensued as the groundskeepers worked to get the field playable. As I write this, the game is still in delay.
Anderson was involved in a collision with CF Jacob May last week. Both players left the game, with May getting the worst of it. Unlike Anderson, May had to go on the disabled list with a concussion. Courtney Hawkins also went on the DL with a finger injury. If Anderson can't avoid the DL this time, there won't be any position players of note on the Barons' active roster.
May was having a good season: .311/.359/.359 with a 15.8% strikeout rate and a 7.0% walk rate. The switch-hitter was batting well from both sides of the plate, in accordance with his career splits. The 23-year-old was doing an excellent job of using his speed by hitting more ground balls and fewer fly balls than in the past. His 25 for 36 in stolen bases needs to be better, however.
Hawkins was having an okay season: .251/.318/.425 with a 31.3% strikeout rate and a 7.0% walk rate. It should be noted that he is the 15th youngest player in the league. Like May, the 21-year-old was hitting more ground balls and fewer fly balls. Unfortunately, that isn't optimal for a power hitter like Hawkins.
In better Barons news, Frankie Montas threw a no-hitter in the first game of a doubleheader yesterday. In the minors, they play only 7 innings in each game of a doubleheader, so it's easier to do it in those (it was the 8th such no-hitter of 2015 in the minors). His line for the game was solid: 7 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 3 K. For the year: 10 GS, 54 IP, 41 H, 18.4% strikeout rate, 10.4% walk rate. After short(er) outings early in the season, he's averaged 6 IP over his past 6 starts, so he's getting his endurance up. Piling up innings was the most important thing for Montas this season, as he only threw 100 innings in 2014 due to his two knee surgeries - which was still a career high - and he needed 23 inning in the AFL to get there.
Tyler Danish is also having himself a year: 11 GS, 59.2 IP, 70 H, 18.5% strikeout rate, 7.9% walk rate. That's a pretty good line for any pitcher. I'm not sure what superlatives to use when that pitcher is the 3rd youngest player in the league and the youngest pitcher.
With the Draft almost over, the short season affiliates will be playing soon. Great Falls open on June 18 and the AZL White Sox get going on the 20th. I'll have previews for each team as soon as the rosters are finalized, which usually doesn't happen until they start playing.