Randy Ventura is swinging a hot bat in Dayton Doug Gray August 31, 2017 4 Comments In early August the Cincinnati Reds acquired outfielder Randy Ventura from the Braves. Atlanta needed more international signing slot money and the Reds moved some of theirs in return for Ventura. When he was acquired, Randy Ventura was hitting .294/.338/.325 with the Rome Braves in the South Atlantic League. The 20-year-old was hitting for average, but he wasn’t showing any power and his strikeout rate was a little bit higher than you want to see from someone without power output. The first nine games after joining the Dayton Dragons, Randy Ventura struggled. He hit .167 with two doubles. Over 40 plate appearances he had four walks and seven strikeouts – an improvement on his rates in Rome. But, since that point he’s played in 13 games and has been hitting the cover off of the baseball. In 61 plate appearances over that stretch, Randy Ventura has five doubles, a triple and a home run. That’s also come along with six walks and nine strikeouts. That’s led to a .358/.417/.547 line over the last two weeks for the outfielder, helping spark a strong run for the Dragons as they head towards the playoffs. Overall, his .281/.350/.417 line in 101 plate appearances with Dayton is an improvement on what he was hitting in the South Atlantic League. His walk rate is up significantly (9.9% to 5.8%). His strikeout rate has also dropped quite a bit (from 20.1% to 15.8%). The biggest thing though, is that he’s hitting for power. Ventura, in just under 25% as many plate appearances has already equaled his double, triple and home run totals that he had in Rome. He’s also gone 9-for-11 in stolen bases – giving him 38 between his two stops. Shed Long returns to the lineup After missing nearly four weeks with a right wrist injury, Shed Long returned to the lineup yesterday. Pensacola had a double header on Wednesday and Long was inserted into game one at second base. He seemed intent on making up for lost time. Long would single in both of his at-bats before walking in his third and final plate appearance in the game. He didn’t start game two, but made a pinch hitting appearance and walked in that plate appearance. In total he would reach base all four times he went to the plate on the day. 4 Responses Wes August 31, 2017 I got my eye on this guy! “The Macho Man” Randy “The Body” Ventura seems a fitting nickname. Baseball America had him as a helium watch player last week which I realized was a good thing after I read up on him : ) Seems like a great addition with international pool money. Nice work management! DaveCT August 31, 2017 Getting a decent collection of athletic speed guys playing OF in the lower minors. Mariel Batista, Gorden, Fairchild, Suglio, McElroy, White, Siri, some guy named Trammell, Friedl. Unless we see an unforeseen arrival of a highly talented lead off OFer, BHam’s heir may be grinding away in the system. Of course, only half or so of these will be playing CF as well, but it is something to dream on. Greenfield Red August 31, 2017 Can Ventura play CF? His size seems too small for the kind of power most corner outfielders have/need. Doug Gray August 31, 2017 I don’t know for sure, because I haven’t seen it, but he’s got the speed to do it. So, I’d venture to say yes.