Pinder, Taillon among top prospect performers Thursday

Pinder, Taillon among top prospect performers Thursday

When Chad Pinder steps to the plate everything is seemingly going his way. The Athletics' No. 8 prospect has been on a tear lately and it continued Thursday night as he went 4-for-4 for Nashville.

Pinder, the No. 94 overall prospect, also went 4-for-4 on Saturday and has 12 hits in his last 24 at-bats.

The 24-year-old shortstop has hits in seven of his last eight games and has raised his batting average from .194 to .250 over that span.

The rest of the best performances from top prospects Thursday:

• Yoan Moncada can do it all. The No. 5 overall prospect extended his hitting streak to eight games with a 1-for-3 night for Salem, but once on the bases, Moncada showed off his speed. Boston's top prospect stole two bases and is now tied for the Minor League lead with 28.

• Dansby Swanson continues to hit regardless of what level he's playing at. Atlanta's top prospect had another multi-hit effort for Mississippi, going 2-for-4 with a homer. After hitting .333 in 21 games at Class-A Advanced Carolina, Swanson is hitting .292 through 19 games at the Double-A level.

• Max Kepler missed out on the cycle, but it was still a night to remember for the Twins' No. 2 prospect. Kepler went 3-for-5 for Rochester, including his first career Triple-A homer. The No. 40 prospect also doubled, homered and drove in three.

• For the third time this season, Jameson Taillon left a start with a zero in the runs column. The Pirates' No. 4 prospect struck out eight over six scoreless frames for Indianapolis. The No. 50 prospect has a measly 1.82 ERA through eight starts.

"I threw a lot of strikes with my fastball and kept them honest with my changeup, which helps the fastball play up," Taillon told MiLB.com. "I had some good curveballs, but I didn't have my best one today, so it was huge to have the changeup working."

• When RBI opportunities present themselves, Kyle Tucker takes advantage. The Astros' No. 4 prospect has four RBIs over the past two games after going 2-for-4 with two RBIs for Quad Cities on Thursday.

• Twins' No. 4 prospect Nick Gordon extended his hitting streak to eight games with a 2-for-5 night for Fort Myers. During Gordon's streak, he has put together four multi-hit games and raised his batting average from .309 to .331.

• Plenty of players had good nights, but J.D. Davis may have had the best. The Astros' No. 12 prospect hit three home runs and went 4-for-5 in Corpus Christi's win over San Antonio. It was Davis' first career three-homer game. He also homered on Wednesday.

• Kyle McGowin seems to be adjusting to Triple-A. The right-hander gave up four runs in 5 2/3 innings in his first start with Salt Lake, but has surrendered just three runs in 11 2/3 innings over his last two starts, including Thursday night's loss to Oklahoma City. The Angels' No. 16 prospect threw 5 2/3 innings, gave up two runs and struck out seven.

Cubs' No. 10 prospect Eloy Jimenez doubled his home run total for the season with a pair of blasts for South Bend on Thursday. Jimenez went 2-for-4 with three RBIs and has a six-game hitting streak.

• Cody Bellinger, the fifth-ranked prospect in the Dodgers' system, may have broken out of his slump as he went 4-for-4 with a homer, leading Tulsa to a win over Springfield.

• Another multi-hit game for Giants' No. 20 prospect Austin Slater. The 23-year-old outfielder has hits in five consecutive games and multiple hits in three of the past five. Slater went 2-for-4 with four RBIs for Richmond.

• Pirates' No. 5 prospect Reese McGuire has seven hits in his last 12 at-bats. The former first-round pick went 2-for-4 for Altoona on Thursday and has at least two hits in each of his past three games.

• After hitting 27 homers in 2013, 25 in '14 and 31 in '15, Adam Walker's power was evident. But just in case anyone doubted the Twins' No. 10 prospect, he put his power on display again Thursday, going 2-for-4 with two home runs in Rochester's win over Durham.

William Boor is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.