While the parent-club Indians try to right the ship during the second half of the season, many young players in the minor leagues are eager to show their worth. Find out how players from the closest level to Cleveland at Triple-A Columbus down to those who've just been drafted at short-season Mahoning Valley are doing.
At Triple-A Columbus, the Clippers are 38-52 and remain in last place in the International League West Division, 13 games behind division-leader Louisville.
* MARTE HOT - 3B Andy Marte has recorded a hit in 16 of his last 18 games, reaching base in all 18, while batting .397 (27-for-68) with four home runs and 19 RBI. Marte's stretch includes a 10-game hit streak from June 23 through July 2 and eight consecutive at-bats with a hit from June 30 to July 2. Marte was named the International League’s Batter of the Week for the period from June 29-July 5, becoming the league's first back-to-back Player of the Week since May of 2006.
* STREAKING - OF Trevor Crowe extended his hitting streak to a career-high 17 games Sunday. Crowe is batting .342 (25-for-73) during the longest active hitting streak in the International League...IB Jordan Brown had his hitting streak snapped at 11 games, but still has recorded hits in 17 of his last 19 games. During the hitting streak Brown batted .388 (19-for-49).
* BRANTLEY FAST - CF Michael Brantley has swiped a league-high tying 33 stolen bases and owns the best steal percentage in the league (91.6%), having been caught only three times this season.
* ALL-STARS - Three players were selected to represent the Clippers at the International League All-Star Game in Portland, Oregon,. They are: C Wyatt Toregas, Marte and Brown.
At Double-A Akron, the Aeros entered the All-Star break riding a season-worst five-game losing streak, but still lead the Eastern League Southern Division by four games.
* FUTURES RECAP - OF Nick Weglarz started in left field for the World Team in Sunday's Futures Game, which was won by the World squad 7-5. He was hitless in two at-bats…C Carlos Santana entered the game in the third inning and went 0-1 with a walk.
* TEJERA IN FOLD - The Indians signed LHP Mike Tejera to a minor league free agent contract last week out of the Mexican League and assigned the former Cuban defector to Akron. The 32-year-old veteran began his pro career in 1995 after being drafted by the Florida Marlins in the sixth round and later spent the entire 2002-03 seasons with the Marlins. He owns a career Major League record of 11-13 with a 5.14 ERA in 111 games with Florida & Texas.
* RONDON TO COLUMBUS - Aeros ace and RHP Hector Rondon was recently promoted to Triple-A after going 7-5 with a 2.75 ERA to start the season in Akron...Over his last four starts at Akron, Rondon went 1-1 with a 1.32ERA...He limited Eastern League hitters to a .227 average and held left-handed hitters to a minuscule .171 batting average…Rondon was tied for third in wins (seven), was fifth in ERA and is sixth in strikeouts (73).
* ALL-STARS: Five players were selected to represent the Aeros at the Eastern League All-Star Game in Trenton, N.J. They are Rondon (who was promoted and replaced by RHP Jeanmar Gomez), RHP and closer Vinnie Pestano (who is on the disabled list and was replaced by RHP Carlton Smith), 1B Beau Mills, Santana and Weglarz...Both Santana and Weglarz will also compete in the All-Star game's home run derby.
At high Class-A Kinston, the K-Tribe finished the first half of the season in third place in the Carolina League Southern Division. So far in the second half, they are in last place at 8-10.[ep
* CHISENHALL STREAKING - INF Lonnie Chisenhall is riding a season-high 13-game batting streak. Over that stretch he is 15-for-49 with five doubles, a triple, a home run, six RBI and five runs scored…Chisenhall's current hitting streak is his third streak of 10 or more games this year…His 14 home runs are third most in the Carolina League.
* FLEET OF FOOT - OF Lucas Montero owns 25 stolen bases on the season, good for fifth in the Carolina League.
* PROSPECT WATCH - OF Tim Federoff is batting .303 (10-for-33) over his last 10 games with two doubles, two RBI and six runs scored...INF Cord Phelps has reached base safely in 25 of his last 26 games…Phelps' 61 walks lead the league while his .393 on-base percentage ranks third.
* BERGER SOLID - LHP Eric Berger has gone 4-4 with a 2.18 ERA over his last eight starts and has held hitters to a .233 batting average...He has allowed one or fewer earned runs in five of the eight starts…His 2.31ERA on the season ranks second in the league and he is fourth with 76 strikeouts.
At low Class-A Lake County, the Captains finished the first half tied for seventh in the South Atlantic League Southern Division. So far in the second half, they are in fifth place at 31-36.
* STREAKING - INF Mark Thompson has hit safely in 11 of his last 13 games, batting .333 (15-for-45) with a double, two home runs, four RBI, nine runs scored and three stolen bases.
* WEBB POWERING - OF Donnie Webb leads the league with nine triples and is fifth in the South Atlantic League with 25 stolen bases.
SMITH SAVING - RHP Steve Smith has converted saves in 15of 16 opportunities and is tied for third in the league for saves. Smith owns a 2.43ERA with 42 strikeouts in 33 1/3 innings.
SOLID PITCHING - RHP Matthew Langwell has allowed only two earned runs in his 15 appearances spanning 2 1/3 innings...RHP TRAVIS TUREK has not allowed a run in his last three outings spanning nine innings while striking out six…Left-handed batters are hitting just .100 (5-for-50) versus RHP Trey Halley.
At Short-season Mahoning Valley, the Scrappers are in first place in the New York-Penn League Pinckney Division with a 16-8 record.
* AUSSIE HOT - Australian OF Jason Smith has hit safely in eight consecutive games, batting .350 (14-for-40) with four doubles, seven RBI and seven runs scored...He is also second in the league in hits with 30, and is ranked ninth in the New York Penn League with a .326 batting average.
* HOT HITTERS - INF Rafael Vera is riding a nine-game hitting streak while batting .285 (15-for-39) with two doubles, four RBI and two runs scored. During the streak Vera has raised his batting average from .091 to .279…Seventh-round pick and OF Jordan Henry has scored in nine consecutive games while batting .342 (13-for-38) with three doubles, four RBI and 14 runs scored...Fourth-round pick and INF Kyle Bellows has hit safely in eight of his last nine games, batting .313 (10-for-32) with a double, 3 RBI and eight runs scored.
* SOLID PITCHING - 19th-round pick LHP Nick Kirk is 3-0 with a save and a 1.35ERA and has struck out 19 batters in just 13 1/3 innings…Eight-round pick and RHP Cory Burns has recorded four consecutive scoreless outings. Over that six-inning span he has allowed just one hit and struck out seven batters… RHP Marty Popham has a 1.57 ERA in 23 innings, striking out 23 batters over that span. He has also thrown 17 consecutive scoreless innings and also earned wins in his last two outings.
* TOOLE SIGNED: INF Justin Toole was signed as a non-drafted minor league free agent earlier this week and assigned to the Scrappers. The University of Iowa product hit .346 (54-for-156) for the Hawkeyes this season and finished his third-year collegiate career as a .360 hitter after being selected to Ping Baseball's preseason all-America third team prior to his senior campaign.