Dodgers prospects among top Monday performers

Urias extends scoreless streak to 16; Verdugo hits two homers

Dodgers prospects among top Monday performers

If Monday's batch of Minor League games was any indication, Dodgers fans have reasons to be excited about the future. Two reasons in particular were on display as a pair of Dodgers prospects -- left-handed pitcher Julio Urias and outfielder Alex Verdugo -- turned in strong performances.

Urias -- the club's top prospect and the No. 2 overall prospect in baseball -- tossed six scoreless frames for Triple-A Oklahoma City, extending his scoreless streak to 16 innings. Urias now owns a 1.50 ERA through six appearances (five starts) in the Pacific Coast League this year. He's struck out 33 batters and walked only six.

At the Double-A level, Tulsa's Verdugo, the Dodgers' No. 6 prospect, homered twice and drove in seven of his club's 10 runs. It was his first multihomer game since he was selected by the Dodgers in the second round of the 2014 Draft. The seven RBIs also eclipsed his previous professional-best of four.

"I felt good, felt locked in," Verdugo told MiLB.com. "I felt like that from the first at-bat, just locked. I'm seeing the ball well. It feels good to help out the team any way you can."

The rest of the best performances from top prospects Thursday:

No. 23 overall prospect Bradley Zimmer (Indians' No. 1) helped propel Double-A Akron to a 12-5 victory over the Erie SeaWolves by going 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBIs. He also walked once and swiped a bag. Zimmer has now homered in three straight games and has five home runs through eight games this month.

Pirates No. 14 prospect Mitch Keller put an end to Class A West Virginia's four-game losing skid with six shutout innings against the Hagerstown Suns. Keller yielded just two hits and a walk and struck out eight. The 20-year-old righty has allowed just three runs through 34 innings this season. His 0.79 ERA is the second-best mark in the South Atlantic League.

A's No. 7 prospect Yairo Munoz elevated his batting average 60 points to .286 with a 3-for-4 performance Monday for Double-A Midland. The 21-year-old shortstop homered twice, drove in four runs and came within a triple of hitting for the cycle.

Rangers No. 15 prospect Ryan Cordell went yard twice for Double-A Frisco, going 2-for-3 with three RBIs and a walk as his RoughRiders narrowly edged Munoz and the RockHounds, 6-5. It's Cordell's seventh homer of the year and 43rd since he was drafted by the Rangers in the 11th round in 2013.

No. 70 overall prospect Kyle Tucker (Astros' No. 4) impressed both at the plate and on the bases for Class A Quad Cities, going 3-for-4 with a double, three RBIs, a walk and three stolen bases. Tucker, last year's No. 5 overall Draft selection, has now tallied multiple hits in five of his last six games, raising his average from .247 to .299.

Indians No. 27 prospect Ryan Merritt was dominant Monday, tossing a four-hit shutout for Triple-A Columbus. He got through a complete nine innings on 97 pitches (69 for strikes), carrying a no-hitter into the fifth inning. Merritt struck out six batters and issued just one free pass.

Twins No. 6 prospect Stephen Gonsalves improved to 4-1 with 6 1/3 scoreless innings for Class A Advanced Fort Myers. The southpaw, who turns 22 in July, allowed just six baserunners (two hits and four walks) and fanned a season-high eight batters. Gonsalves has limited his opponent to one or no runs in each of his last five starts since surrendering three earned runs in his season debut April 7.

Cubs No. 20 prospect Dan Vogelbach put the finishing touches on Triple-A Iowa's five-run first inning Monday, punctuating the frame with a three-run homer. But Vogelbach wasn't done there; he homered again in his next plate appearance, a solo shot to left field. The first baseman is batting .333 (7-for-21) with three homers and nine RBIs over his last five games.

No. 75 overall prospect Amed Rosario (Mets' No. 2) was one of eight St. Lucie Mets players with multihit games Monday. He hit 3-for-4 with three runs scored and two RBIs in the Class A game. Rosario's go-ahead RBI triple in the fifth inning snapped a 5-5 tie and propelled his team to an eventual 14-6 win over Jupiter. The 20-year-old Dominican shortstop has collected at least two hits in five of six games this month.

Mariners No. 10 prospect Andrew Moore allowed just one hit and two walks through six scoreless innings for the Class A Bakersfield Blaze on Monday. It was the third scoreless outing for Moore, who also tossed a seven-inning no-hitter on April 22. The righty struck out four batters, bringing his season total to 37 against seven walks in 44 1/3 innings.

Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.