Sunday, June 22 - Asheville 1, Augusta 0
Augusta was shut out for the third time in four games. The result was a four-game sweep at the hands of Asheville to start the second half of the season.
The GreenJackets have left 33 on base and are 3 for 29 in their past four games. An 0-4 start definitely isn't what they had in mind after finishing the first half on a good note.
Ysla showed both his strengths and youth over seven innings. He only allowed one unearned run on four hits, but he walked six and struggled on the mental side. He tied a career high with nine strikeouts.
Ysla ranged 87-94 with two fastballs, a four-seamer with some sink and run, and a two-seamer with greater arm-side run at a much lower velo. His fastball will go from 94 to 87 one pitch to the next, so it helps with deception. He showed good feel for a breaking ball, flashing plus and commanding it to either side. He went in with the breaking ball to left-handed batters a few times that led to funny swings. Eight of his 17 swinging strikes were on the pitch. Ysla's changeup was below average, as has been the case. His feel for it is inconsistent, and it remains firm.
Ysla's pace was incredibly slow from the stretch. He struggled controlling the running game against a speedy Asheville lineup, and it affected his concentration from the stretch. The result was too many pickoff attempts that had no purpose, and his pace slowed. Ysla also lost concentration that led to three two-out walks. His command slacked with nobody on and two outs. Manager Mike Goff said after the game Ysla needs to continue to work on the mental side of the game, and this is a big part.
Dahl is still at the point where his profile is more projection than realization. The athleticism, speed, instincts, bat ability, power potential, defensive profile are all there. It's a matter of putting it together on the field.
Over the course of a series, Dahl will show all five tools. He makes consistent contact, much of it with authority, and he has a knack for finding the barrel. He shows raw power, and while he probably won't produce a lot of home runs in the upper levels, power will be another advantage for him. He has an approach at the plate, but he's still developing an eye. His defensive profile is the best part of his game right now. It's the one package of tools that he is able to showcase day to day, from excellent reads and routes, to a solid arm and glove.
Dahl still tends to struggle following through with his swing. At times, he will rely on poking it the other way rather than turning on the ball with force. It's something a hitter learns with time and repetition.
Tapia was a completely different player from my April look. He was more aggressive at the plate and on the basepaths. He made consistently hard contact with an aggressive swing, and he showed pop by driving the gaps. He used his excellent speed to steal four bags in the series. He overswung at times and made a poor mistake on the basepaths Sunday, but that comes with youth. His swing was quicker, the barrel got to the zone cleaner, and the result was better contact.
In the April series, Tapia seemed to go through the motions. He made weak hacks and played with a casual demeanor. I gave him a poor report because of it, but I have to give him credit for turning things around.
I'm sure motivation helped Tapia. He got hit four times in three games, the last causing the benches to clear. Tapia stayed patient despite the constant drilling, which is good for him. He took it out on Augusta on the basepaths by stealing bases and scoring runs.
Tapia's demeanor will rub opposing players the wrong way. He strides casually to the plate and points his bat at the pitcher before taking a crouched stance. He walks the Griffey walk. It shows he has confidence.
***Ysla hit Tapia in the seventh inning, the second time Tapia was hit in the game and fourth time in three days. Tapia and Ysla jawed at each other, and the benches cleared. There was no pushing or punches thrown. Home plate umpire Derek Gonzales warned both sides, but no other batters were hit. Tapia entered the Augusta series having been hit twice in 61 games this season.
***Tapia's four stolen bases in two games raised his season total to 16. It was his fourth multi-steal game this season. His season high for a game is three against Rome on June 13.
***Ysla completed seven innings for the fourth time this season. It was his longest start while allowing zero earned runs. His previous long this season while not issuing an earned run was 4.2 innings against Hagerstown on April 23. His nine strikeouts tied a career high previously set June 9 against Rome.
***Gabriel Cornier doubled down the right field line in his first at-bat this season. He finished 1 for 3. He played first base for just the third time as a professional after playing two games there in 2009 for the Dominican Summer League Giants. Cornier has been on the disabled list for Augusta all season.
***Tyler Horan's two hits gave him his 18th multi-hit game this season, raising his average to .263. After recording five hits in four games, Horan went 1 for 9 in the first three games against Asheville before breaking out with two singles Sunday.
Notable Augusta lines:
Luis Ysla: 7 IP, 4 H, R, 6 BB, 9 K, 8 ground balls, 3 fly balls, 1 line drive, 17 swinging strikes, 87-94
Tyler Horan: 2-4
Gabriel Cornier: 1-3, 2B
Notable Asheville lines:
Konner Wade: 7 IP, 4 H, BB, 2 K, 11 ground balls, 9 fly balls, 3 line drives, 6 swinging strikes, 87-89
Michael Benjamin: 2-5, 2B, 2 SB
Raimel Tapia: 1-2, 2B, 2 SB
Correlle Prime: 0-1, 3 BB