With several players ranked on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 Prospects list scheduled to take the mound Saturday, it has the potential to be a low-scoring day in several corners of the Minor Leagues. The group of elite pitchers includes Red Sox No. 1 prospect Henry Owens and Nationals' No. 1 prospect Lucas Giolito.
But of all the top pitchers scheduled to start Saturday, the best storylines can be found in the two Triple-A leagues. In the International League, Blue Jays' No. 1 prospect Aaron Sanchez will make his Triple-A debut with Buffalo after being promoted from Double-A New Hampshire this week. And the Pacific Coast League schedule features a matchup between Oklahoma City right-hander Mike Foltynewicz (No. 46 on the Top 100) and Las Vegas right-hander Rafael Montero (No. 71). Both games can be seen on MiLB.TV, beginning with Buffalo visiting Toledo at 7 p.m. ET and Oklahoma City hosting Las Vegas an hour later.
Sanchez, ranked No. 19 on the Top 100, began the season with New Hampshire. In 14 starts, he went 3-4 with a 3.82 ERA. He struck out 57 batters and walked 40 in 66 innings. Now, he joins a rotation at Buffalo that includes Blue Jays' No. 10 prospect Sean Nolin and right-hander Deck McGuire, a fellow member of the Blue Jays' pitching-heavy 2010 Draft class.
Sanchez finished strong at New Hampshire. He won his last two starts (his first wins since Opening Day) and struck out 14 batters in 11 2/3 innings.
In Oklahoma City, Foltynewicz, the Astos' No. 5 prospect is looking for his seventh consecutive quality start. During the streak, which began May 5, he is 3-2 with a 2.35 ERA, and he's holding opponents to a .172 batting average. He has struck out 44 batters and walked 14 in 38 1/3 innings.
Montero will be making his third start since returning to Triple-A after a brief stint in the Major Leagues. He has struggled in his last two starts, allowing a combined nine runs (four earned) on 13 hits in 8 1/3 innings. But the Mets' No. 2 prospect has been solid overall this season for the 51s. He is 4-2 with a 3.78 ERA and has struck out 49 batters and walked 24 in 50 innings.
Other pitchers ranked in the Top 100 who are scheduled to start Saturday include Owens (No. 26), Giolito (No. 36), Zach Lee (No. 54), Justin Nicolino (No. 67), Matt Barnes (No. 72) and Sean Manaea (No. 100). Fans can watch Owens, Lee, Nicolino and Barnes on MiLB.TV, beginning with Owens and Double-A Portland visiting Akron and Indians' No. 1 prospect Francisco Lindor at 7:05 p.m.
Top prospect probables:
- Jason Adam (Royals' No. 8), Northwest Arkansas at Springfield
- Chris Anderson (Dodgers' No. 5), Rancho Cucamonga at Lancaster
- Barnes (Red Sox No. 6), Pawtucket vs. Charlotte
- Aaron Blair (D-backs' No. 3), Visalia at Inland Empire
- Cody Dickson (Pirates' No. 18), West Virginia vs. Delmarva
- Foltynewicz (Astros' No. 5), Oklahoma City vs. Las Vegas
- Giolito (Nationals' No. 1), Hagerstown vs. Greenville
- Luke Jackson (Rangers' No. 7), Frisco at Corpus Christi
- Rob Kaminsky (Cardinals' No. 3), Peoria vs. Clinton
- Jairo Labourt (Blue Jays' No. 12), Vancouver at Salem-Kizer
- Lee (Dodgers' No. 4), Albuquerque vs. New Orleans
- Manaea (Royals' No. 4), Wilmington vs. Carolina
- Cody Martin (Braves' No. 9), Gwinnett at Louisville
- Adalberto Mejia (Giants' No. 3), Richmond vs. New Hampshire
- Francellis Montas (White Sox No. 16), Winston-Salem at Potomac
- Montero (Mets' No. 2), Las Vegas at Oklahoma City
- Mike Montgomery (Rays' No. 18), Durham at Indianapolis
- Nicolino (Marlins' No. 4), Jacksonville at Jackson
- Owens (Red Sox No. 1), Portland at Akron
- Sal Romano (Reds' No. 14), Dayton vs. Lake County
- Sanchez (Blue Jays' No. 1), Buffalo at Toledo
- Mark Sappington (Angels' No. 4), Inland Empire vs. Visalia
- Luis Severino (Yankees' No. 9), Charleston at Lexington
- Scott Snodgrass (White Sox No. 19), Birmingham vs. Montgomery
- Ryne Stanek (Rays' No. 11), Bowling Green at Fort Wayne
- Jen-Ho Tseng (Cubs' No. 20), Kane County at Beloit
Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.