Mooneyham finally is commanding some positive attention

slynch@mercedsunstar.comAugust 3, 2013 

Brett Mooneyham looks like all knees and elbows out on the mound.

That long 6-foot-5 frame coupled with his power arm is a big part of what makes Mooneyham so tough to hit.

But with so many moving parts, it's also easy for the southpaw's mechanics to get out of whack. That's generally when the bases on balls start piling up for the former Buhach Colony High ace.

It's been maybe the only black mark on a stellar first full minor-league season. And that mark is fading fast.

Mooneyham has been a picture of command his last three starts, showcasing the stuff that made him a third-round pick by the Washington Nationals in 2012. After walking 22 in his seven previous outings, Mooneyham has allowed just one in his last 21 innings pitched.

He's won all three games for the Hagerstown Suns in the South Atlantic League, allowing three total runs and striking out 16 to improve to 7-3 on the year and lower his ERA to 2.48.

Mooneyham is one of eight current minor league players with local ties. Here's a look at how the rest of the group is doing.

Jake Jefferies, Triple A New Orleans

After a trying 2013 season, Jefferies decided to retire from baseball at the end of July.

The former Buhach Colony catcher was splitting time behind the dish with a pair of other players at Triple A and hadn't seen a lot of action (30 at-bats in nine games). A concussion that forced him to the disabled list at the end of June may have been the last straw.

The 25-year-old former 2008 third-round pick played 51/2 years in the minor leagues.

Cody Martin, Triple A Gwinnett

Martin closed out July by shaking off a series of tough outings.

The former Dos Palos right-hander took a no-decision, but allowed just one run on five hits in eight complete innings. He struck out seven and walked two.

Ben Griset, Low A Short Season Hudson Valley

After getting drafted by the Rays in June, Griset has acclimated himself to the minor leagues pretty quickly.

The former Gustine left-hander is 1-2 in eight starts with a solid 3.53 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 352/3 innings pitched.

Eddie Gamboa, Triple A Norfolk

Triple A hasn't welcomed Gamboa with open arms since his promotion. He's walked 13 in four starts and surrendered 18 runs while going 0-2.

The former Merced right-hander is 4-8 on the year with a 4.27 ERA and 95 strikeouts.

Bradin Hagens, Double A Mobile

As brilliant as the former Merced College ace was in May and June, July provided some bumps in the road.

Hagens got knocked around in three of his four July starts, yielding an average of six runs per game and taking losses in all three. He bounced back with a solid outing to open August, but somehow still took the loss despite allowing just one run in five innings.

Dylan Floro, Low A Bowling Green

The Rays are letting Floro stretch out a bit. After limiting him to six innings his his first 15 starts of the season, the former BC hurler has gone into the seventh of his last three outings.

He continues to make Low A ball look easy, going 9-2 with a 1.56 ERA on the season and an almost 41/2-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

Jake Sisco, Low A Lake County

Sisco is stuck in a rough patch, having dropped three of his last six starts.

The former MC ace hasn't got a lot of support offensively or defensively during the run. He's now 4-8 on the season with a 4.45 ERA.

Shawn Stuart, Low A Short Season Tri-Valley

Stuart is still trying to fight through a slow start to 2013. The former MC right-hander has allowed runs in eight of his last 11 relief appearances, but did close July with 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

He hasn't factored in many decisions during the rough patch, however, posting a 3-1 record on the year.

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