Centerfielder Nick Moresi, drafted out of Fresno State two years ago, was moved up to High A Salem on May 4. Moresi has gotten a hit in all three of his starts with the Avalanche and continue his hot start to the month, batting .316/.350/.474 in May so far to bring his season average up to .229. Moresi has also scored five runs of his 12 runs in May.
Corpus Christi's POTM Tommy Manzella is slumping in the first week of the month. Manzella has been all over the board. He's gone 4 for 20 with two doubles, a stolen base, two sacrifice hits, two sacrifice flys, grounded into one double play and struck out four times. Still, Manzella has managed to get on base, walking four times.
Passing Manzella in Runs Created this month are Lexington's Collin DeLome and Salem's Jordan Parraz. DeLome is only hitting .240 in May but he already has three triples and two doubles. Parraz has walked seven times to off-set a .227 batting average so far. Salem teammate Tim Torres is also nipping on Manzella's heels, putting up a .304/.407/.522 May.
As Baseball America reported in its Transactions blog, former first-round draft pick Max Sapp has been placed on the 7-day DL with a strained hamstring. Sapp hasn't played in a couple weeks now but wasn't exactly lighting it up in 28 at-bats previously this season. Maybe the time off will help him refocus. Two other injury notes from chron.com: Felipe Paulino is working out in Florida but hasn't picked up a ball yet and is on pace to be back with some team by the All-Star break. Paul Estrada is also throwing in extended spring training, but according to Brian McTaggart, tweaked his shoulder last time out and will need more time before he's activated.
Lexington's Jeff Icenogle and Corpus Christi's Sergio Perez both made successful comebacks from offseason injuries. Icenogle tossed two scoreless innings earlier this month, giving up just one hit while striking out one and walking one. Perez picked up the win May 7 in his first game back, pitching 5 innings and giving up just one unearned run, while striking out four and walking one.
Looking at the Astros farm clubs, Salem is the best offensive team right now, as the Avalanche are in first or second in every offensive category except home runs. As we mentioned in a previous post, Salem's ballpark is one of the worst in the minors for hitting home runs. Unfortunately, the offensive success hasn't translated in the ole won-loss column, as the Avalanche are sitting at 13-19 and have dropped five straight games. Corpus Christi has the second best record in the Texas League at 19-14, but is still 3 1/2 games behind division leading Frisco. Round Rock is off to a terrible start, tied for the second-worst record in the PCL at 12-20. The Express are also last in hits and total bases. Rounding out the fun is Lexington at 10-22, good for last place in the South Atlantic League. Before losing their last three, the Legends went 4-3 to look respectable. Unfortunately, inconsistent pitching and a strikeout-prone lineup have meant few wins.