Pipeline preview: Blackburn aims to build on longest start of career
By Mike Rosenbaum
Here's a look at top prospects to watch in Sunday's Minor League action:
Hitter to watch: Cody Bellinger (Dodgers' No. 1), Oklahoma City at Omaha (8:05 p.m. ET on MiLB.TV)
Promoted to Oklahoma City on Saturday, Bellinger -- who celebrated his 21st birthday in July -- got his first Triple-A knock out of the way in his second plate appearance, delivering a pinch-hit RBI single in the top of the ninth inning. The No. 34 overall prospect earned a trip to the Minors' highest level after a strong showing in the Double-A Texas League, where he batted .263/.359/.484 with 23 home runs and 65 RBIs.
Blackburn permitted one earned run on seven hits and completed 8 1/3 innings in his last turn, marking the longest outing of his career. Acquired from the Cubs along with Dan Vogelbach in the July 20 deal for Mike Montgomery, Blackburn, 22, has gone 3-1 with a 3.54 ERA in 40 2/3 innings (8 appearances/7 starts) since joining Double-A Jackson. The right-hander has pitched to a 3.27 ERA in 143 innings this season in the Southern League.
Never has Beede been better in the Minors than he was in his last start for Double-A Richmond, when he tossed nine scoreless innings of two-hit ball to record the first complete game and shutout of his career. The 23-year-old righty tallied a career-best 11 strikeouts and walked just one. Beede, the Giants' first-round pick in 2014, has enjoyed a breakout campaign in 2016, posting a 2.87 ERA with 133 strikeouts over 141 1/3 innings (23 starts) in the Eastern League.
Kingham appeared destined to pitch in the big leagues in 2015 before a right elbow injury, followed by Tommy John surgery, prematurely ended his season and then sidelined him for much of '16. But after eight starts between the Gulf Coast and Florida State Leagues, the 24-year-old right-hander had his rehab assignment moved up to Double-A Altoona last week and tossed six strong innings versus Binghamton, allowing one earned run on three hits.
Sunday's Top 100 prospect probables
No. 40 Reynaldo Lopez (Nationals' No. 3), Syracuse at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (1:05 p.m. ET on MiLB.TV)
More top prospect probables
Daniel Gossett (A's No. 19), Nashville at New Orleans (Triple-A) Matt Koch (D-backs' No. 20), Reno at Tacoma (Triple-A)
Harrison Musgrave (Rockies' No. 25), Albuquerque at El Paso (Triple-A) Myles Jaye (Tigers' No. 25), Toledo vs. Columbus (Triple-A) Chris Stratton (Giants' No. 26), Sacramento vs. Fresno (Triple-A) Joe Gunkel (Orioles' No. 27), Norfolk at Durham (Triple-A)
Ariel Jurado (Rangers' No. 8), Frisco vs. Midland (Double-A) Sal Romano (Reds' No. 17), Pensacola at Birmingham (Double-A)
Max Povse (Braves' No. 20) vs. Brandon Woodruff (Brewers' No. 25), Mississippi vs. Biloxi (Double-A)
Albert Abreu (Astros' No. 8), Lancaster vs. Inland Empire (Class A Advanced)
Jordan Stephens (White Sox No. 11), Winston-Salem at Carolina (Class A Advanced) Marcos Diplan (Brewers' No. 12), Brevard County vs. Daytona (Class A Advanced)
Justin Donatella (D-backs' No. 27), Visalia at San Jose (Class A Advanced)
Brett Graves (Athletics' No. 30), Stockton vs. Bakersfield (Class A Advanced)
T.J. Zeuch (Blue Jays' No. 8), Lansing at Lake County (Class A)
Franklyn Kilome (Phillies' No. 9), Lakewood vs. Greensboro (Class A)
Franklin Perez (Astros' No. 11), Quad Cities at Burlington (Class A)
Nolan Watson (Royals' No. 12), Lexington at Hickory (Class A) Logan Allen (Padres' No. 17), Fort Wayne at Bowling Green (Class A)
Justin Steele (Cubs' No. 23), South Bend vs. Dayton (Class A)
Joan Baez (Nationals' No. 24), Hagerstown at Asheville (Class A) Ricardo Sanchez (Braves' No. 25), Rome at Augusta (Class A)
Dane Dunning (Nationals' No. 6), Auburn vs. Batavia (Class A Short Season)
Dakota Chalmers (A's No. 9), Vermont vs. Lowell (Class A Short Season)
Juan Hillman (Indians' No. 12), Mahoning Valley at West Virginia (Class A Short Season) Hansel Rodriguez (Padres' No. 19), Tri-City vs. Vancouver (Class A Short Season)
Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.