Brewers prospect Ray showing off power-speed combo

The Milwaukee Brewers‘ retooling happened quicker than expected, but the team still has a number of promising prospects.

Every Thursday for the rest of the season, FOX Sports Wisconsin will take a closer look at some specific young players in Milwaukee’s farm system — as well as noting others who might be stepping up — measuring, highlighting and evaluating their progress.

This is the 7th edition of the 2018 Young Brewers Tracker.

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Corbin Burnes, SP (age 23/Triple-A)

Last week: 2 games (2 starts), 1-1, 11 IP, 12 H, 6 R, 5 BB, 13 K

Season: 13 games (13 starts), 3-4, 4.96 ERA, 69 IP, 71 H, 5 HR, 29 BB, 71 K, .269 OBA, 1.45 WHIP.

Notable: Burnes allowed four runs in five innings at Fresno on June 7 but then turned in his best start at home on the season, allowing two runs in six innings in a win over Las Vegas on June 13. That lowered his ERA to games played in Colorado Springs to 6.75.

 

Lucas Erceg, 3B (Age 23/Double-A)

Last week: 7 games, 26 AB, 7 H, 1 2B, 1 3B, 1 HR, 4 R, 4 RBI, 0 SB, 3 BB, 4 K, .269 BA.

Season: 62 games, 239 AB, .234 BA, .295 OBP, .343 SLG, .639 OPS, 9 2B, 1 3B, 5 HR, 26 R, 24 RBI, 1 SB, 20 BB, 38 K.

Notable: Erceg had a hit in six of seven games last week, but with only one multiple-hit game — a 2-for-5 effort with a home run on June 10 at Jacksonville.

 

Keston Hiura, 2B (Age 21/Double-A)

Last week: 6 games, 24 AB, 10 H, 4 2B, 1 HR, 5 R, 3 RBI, 3 SB, 3 BB, 4 K, .417 BA.

Season (Double-A): 12 games, 45 AB, .378 BA, .440 OBP, .578 SLG, 1.016 OPS, 6 2B, 0 3B, 1 HR, 8 R, 3 RBI, 5 SB, 3 BB, 7 K.

Season (High-A): 50 games, 206 AB, .320 BA, .382 OBP, .529 SLG, .911 OPS, 16 2B, 3 3B, 7 HR, 38 R, 23 RBI, 4 SB, 14 BB, 47 K.

Notable: Stop us if you’ve heard this before, but Hiura can flat-or hit. Hiura had three multi-hit games last week including two games with three hits. He hit his first Double-A home run on June 13 and it just happened to be walk-off winner.

 

Jacob Nottingham, C (Age 23/Triple-A)

Last week: 4 games, 15 AB, 1 H, 1 R, 0 RBI, 0 SB, 3 BB, 7 K, .067 BA.

Season: 28 games, 102 AB, .304 BA, .383 OBP, .539 SLG, .922 OPS, 7 2B, 1 3B, 5 HR, 21 R, 17 RBI, 2 SB, 9 BB, 36 K.

Notable: Nottingham has one hit in his last 19 at-bats and has seen his batting average drop from .361 to .304 in that span. Against Las Vegas on June 13 he was 0 for 5 with four strikeouts.

 

Luis Ortiz, SP (age 22/Double-A)

Last week: 1 game (0 starts), 0-0, 1 SV, 4 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 7 K

Season: 8 games (4 starts), 1-2, 2 SV, 2.65 ERA, 34 IP, 27 H, 3 HR, 10 BB, 38 K, .214 OBA, 1.09 WHIP.

Notable: Ortiz relieved Cody Ponce on June 9 and pitched the final four innings allowing just one hit while striking out seven. He threw 69 pitches, which was his most since coming off the disabled list. Since allowing five runs in 1 2/3 innings in his first appearance off the DL, Ortiz hasn’t allowed a run in 11 innings, spread over three games.

 

Freddy Peralta, SP (age 22/Triple-A)

Last week: 1 game (1 start), 0-0, 6 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 BB, 11 K

Season: 11 games (11 starts), 6-1, 2.89 ERA, 56 IP, 43 H, 1 HR, 27 BB, 79 K, .210 OBA, 1.25 WHIP.

Notable: Peralta fanned 11 at Sacramento on June 10, his first double-digit K performance in the minor leagues this season and his second-highest total on the farm since he has 12 last August while pitching for Biloxi. Of course, his overall season and career high came when he fanned 13 in his major-league debut earlier this year with the Brewers. Despite making two starts with Milwaukee, Peralta leads the Pacific Coast League in strikeouts and his 12.6 K/9 leads all pitchers at the Triple-A level (min. 35 innings).

 

Brett Phillips, OF (Age 24/Triple-A)

Last week: 5 games, 19 AB, 6 H, 2 HR, 2 R, 5 RBI, 0 SB, 2 BB, 3 K, .316 BA.

Season: 46 games, 162 AB, .253 BA, .347 OBP, .426 SLG, .773 OPS, 6 2B, 5 3B, 4 HR, 24 R, 16 RBI, 6 SB, 24 BB, 63 K.

Notable: Phillips had been hitless in 13 at-bats over three games when he went 3 for 4 at Sacramento on June 10, hitting his first home run since May 30. He added another hit the next day and was 2 for 5 with a home run at home vs. Las Vegas on June 13.

 

Corey Ray, OF (age 23/Double-A)

Last week: 7 games, 30 AB, 8 H, 3 2B, 1 HR, 5 R, 4 RBI, 5 SB, 3 BB, 10 K, .267 BA.

Season: 65 games, 260 AB, .254 BA, .351 OBP, .462 SLG, .813 OPS, 19 2B, 4 3B, 9 HR, 41 R, 30 RBI, 17 SB, 36 BB, 75 K.

Notable: Ray had a big game on June 10 at Jacksonville, going 4 for 4 with two doubles, a steal, three runs and an RBI. He’s now second in the Southern League in total bases (120) and steals. He swiped two bags in a game at Pensacola on June 7 then stole a base in three of the next four games as well.

 

Others: It was quite the week for pitchers in the Brewers’ farm system — at the plate. Colorado Springs’ Adrian Houser was 2 for 3 with a run and Alec Asher went 1 for 2 while Biloxi’s Kodi Medeiros swatted a grand slam on June 11 for his first professional hit. … Colorado Springs OF Keon Broxton hit .350/.435/.600 last week and is now batting .272/.345/.433 with seven home runs and 18 steals on the season. … Biloxi SS Jake Hager hit five home runs last week. He also had two doubles and drove in 11 with a slash line of .333/.367/.963. Hager, 25, is a former first-round pick of Tampa Bay and is in his first season in Milwaukee’s system. … Shuckers LHP Mederois (1st round, 2014) allowed one run on four hits over six innings with no walks and eight strikeouts in the game in which he hit a grand slam. The eight Ks tied his season high. … Biloxi LHP Quintin Torres-Costa (35th round, 2015) was added to the Southern League All-Star roster. The reliever has a 1.37 ERA, 1.06 WHIP and 40 K in 26.1 IP. … Four Carolina players were named Southern League All-Stars: RHP Marcos Diplan, C Max McDowell (13th round, 2015), 2B Tucker Neuhaus (2nd round comp., 2013) and LHP Cameron Roegner (22nd round, 2016). … After two rough starts, Roegner threw eight scoreless innings, allowing three hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in his lone start last week. His ERA is now at 1.64. … Mudcats OF Cooper Hummel (18th round, 2016) hit .300/.481/.600 with two home runs. … Wisconsin OF Demi Orimoloye (4th round, 2015) batted .320/.370/400 with two stolen bases. On the season he’s hitting .263/.342/.426 with five home runs and 13 steals. … The Timber Rattlers allowed 10 runs in seven games. RHP Alec Bettinger (10th round, 2017) tossed six scoreless in his lone start with six strikeouts.

Statistics courtesy milb.com and STATS

Dave Heller is the author of Ken Williams: A Slugger in Ruth’s Shadow (a Larry Ritter Book Award nominee), Facing Ted Williams – Players From the Golden Age of Baseball Recall the Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived and As Good As It Got: The 1944 St. Louis Browns