It has been a fun month of June. Several former G-Stros are making serious progress and the new bunch is winning games. Let's look at how the former Greeneville Astros did this month.
Tri Cities ValleyCats
Pitcher of the Month - Vincent Velasquez made three starts in June and had a 1.76 ERA in 15 1/3 IP with 16 K. What makes this more impressive is these were his first three starts after missing all of 2011 with Tommy John surgery.
Honorable Mention - Juri Perez - two scoreless starts to start his second season in the NYPL. Jamaine Cotton - made five scoreless relief appearances before surrendering two runs on 6/30.
Hitter of the Month - There are only three former G-Stros on the roster in TriCities, none of which are setting the woods on fire. This months award goes to Jesse Wierzbicki who hit .260 for the first 14 games of the season.
Pitcher of the Month - Murilo Gouvea had a stellar month out of the pen. Allowing just one earned run in 14 1/3 ip (10 games) with 14 strike outs. He only allowed five hits during that stretch but allowed 10 walks. His June ERA was 0.61.
Honorable Mention - Mike Foltynewicz amassed a 2.97 ERA in five starts. He had a rough outing to end the month, otherwise, he numbers would have been much stronger. Still 2.97 is not to shabby.
Hitter of the Month - I think those who follow Astros minor league ball would come after me with pitch forks and torches if I chose anyone but Delino DeShields Jr. as the Lexington hitter of the month. DDJ hit a solid .303 for the month. He also took 16 walks which helped boost his OPB to .407. He showed some pop with seven extra base hits and when he did find him self on first, he often managed to get to second via one of his 25 stolen bases.
Honorable Mentions - Chan Moon really appears to have put it together at the plate. The South Korean Shortstop hit .276 in June with a .403 OBP. Roberto Pena also had a solid June hitting .329 and hitting seven doubles during the month where he turned 20.
Pitcher of the Month - Jose Trinadad had a great month out of the pen. In eight games (seven relief and one start) he allowed 19 hits in 21 innings pitched. His ERA for the month was .043. His last appearance of the month was spreading seven hits over seven shut out innings in his third start of the year. His ERA as as start this season is 1.13
Honorable Mention - Pat Urckfitz who allowed four earned runs in 15 innings pitched for a 2.40 ERA in June.
Hitter of the Month - I normally put those who haven't played a full month in the Honorable Mention category but what Grant Hogue put together in limited playing time is impressive. He played the first nine games of the month and then missed about two weeks on the DL returning to get in for the final few games of the month. During his 11 games, Hogue hit .667 (21 out of 34). Hard to ignore that production.
Honorable Mention - Rafael Valenzuela hit .298 in 17 games with a .403 OBP. Rene Garcia hit .321 in 16 games. Ben Orloff hit .283 and had just four strike outs in 99 at bats during the month.
Corpus Christi Hooks
Pitcher of the Month - Jose Cisnero is the easy choice this month. In five starts, he allowed just eight walks and eight earned runs while striking out 31 in 33 innings pitched. He allowed no home runs in June. He pitched a complete game two hitter on June 16th. He held opponents to a .215 batting average for the month.
Honorable Mention- Henry Villar pitched in 8 games (16 1/3 IP) in June with a 2.70 ERA. During that span, he fanned 16 while only issuing two free passes.
Hitter of the Month - Kody Hinze rebounded from a rough May (.106 in 22 games) to hit for a solid .306 in 24 games in June. Seven of his 22 hits in the month went for extra bases.
Oklahoma City RedHawks
Pitcher of the Month - Vacant - there were no former G-Stros pitching in Oklahoma City in June except Fernando Abad who was on rehab assignment.
Hitter of the Month - Brandon Barnes is the only RedHawk who played in Greeneville but this award isn't given by default. Barnes has earned it! He hit .333 with nine doubles and three home runs in June. He also walked eight times and struck out just 18 in 108 at bats (28 games). If the 26 year old Barnes can keep this up, he might get a shot at the bigs in a September call up or as an injury replacement.
Minors Outside Astros System
Pitcher of the Month - Slingin Sammy Gervacio continues to tear up the Mexican League (unaffiliated AAA). In June, he appeared in 15 games (15 2/3 IP), issued just four walks and nine hits while fanning 23 batters. He earned 12 saves during the month.
Hitter of the Month - Albert Cartwright had a bounce back month after hitting below the Mendoza line for May, he hit .306 with four doubles and three home runs in the Florida State League (Phillies High A).
Pitcher of the Month - While Jordan Lyles and Fernando Abad had good months, the best month by a former Greeneville Astro pitcher in the Majors was by Troy Patton of the Orioles. Patton appeared in 11 games (14 2/3 IP) in which he fanned 15 batters while allowing only nine hits and four walks. Opponents hit just .190 off Patton during the month.
Hitter of the Month - While you can debate my list choice, I don't think there is much of a debate when it comes to selecting Jose Altuve as the hitter of the month. During June, he hit .291 with five doubles and two home runs.
Quick break down of the number of former G-stros in the Astros system:
Tri Cities - 8
Lexington - 16
Lancaster - 17
Corpus Christi - 6
Oklahoma City - 1
Houston - 4