April 23-25: at Hagerstown Suns
April 26-28: at Lexington Legends
The first thing that might jump out to you is that the GreenJackets are playing Lexington again. This will be the third series against them already, and the two teams will face each other at least game every week this month. Augusta might look forward to it, though; the GreenJackets are 6-1 against the Legends. They will also play them Monday before getting a day off April 30.
But first comes Hagerstown. The Suns, a Nationals affiliate, are 10-8.
Hagerstown players ranked in top 30 of Nationals system by Baseball America:
LHP Matt Purke - 9 (DL)
2B Tony Renda - 12
LHP Brett Mooneyham - 19
OF Estarlin Martinez - 21
OF Brandon Miller - 22
RHP Ivan Pineyro - 27
RHP Wirkin Estevez - 29 (DL)
The GreenJackets won't have to deal with two of Hagerstown's better arms in Purke and Estevez. Purke, especially, as he was a third-round pick in 2011 out of TCU. He continues to recover from shoulder surgery last year.
But Mooneyham is no lefty to take lightly. He has allowed just one run in 14.1 innings this season. If Augusta faces Mooneyham, it does have regression on its side, as the left-hander has a ridiculous .100 BABIP with nine walks and only six strikeouts. He was a 2012 third-round pick out of Stanford. Reports say Mooneyham fights his mechanics at times, leading to erratic control and command. He works with a low-90s fastball, above-average slider and average changeup.
Renda is hitting .260/.329/.384 with a .333 wOBA and 102 wRC+, including eight walks and five stolen bases. Renda is described as a hard worker who knows the plate and can square balls up well. He doesn't have much power and relies on quick hands with no stride. His defense is average at second base, but it's steady and won't hinder a team.
Miller and Martinez are two outfield bats that are struggling so far this season, sporting batting averages at or below .200. Both are intriguing but raw in their own ways. Miller is a former catching prospect who spent some time at Georgia Tech. He has plus-plus raw power and a plus arm in right field, according to reports, while the rest of his game needs refinement. His mechanics are raw in the box, as are Martinez's. The latter has toiled in rookie ball for some time but is still 21 years old. He continues to be a project bat who shows good athleticism in left field.