Padres prospects claim weekly awards

Simon Castro

Five San Diego Padres prospects claimed weekly awards for the week ending August 23, as chosen by Minor League Baseball. Simon Castro was a sure-win with his no-hitter and was joined by fellow pitching prospects Wade LeBlanc and Anthony Bass. Allan Dykstra and Nate Freiman earned awards on the hitting side.

Simon Castro threw a no-hitter against Dayton on Tuesday, and he was perfect in the seven-inning game except for the batter he plunked in the second. The Padres prospect struck out nine over the course of the no-no, and his 142 strikeouts on the season are 15 more than his closest competitor has. Castro's gem comes after one of his worst starts of the year, a five-inning outing in which he gave up six runs on seven hits.

After giving up a run on three hits over six innings to earn a win on Monday, Padres prospect Wade LeBlanc rolled over Sacramento on Saturday. He threw seven shutout innings, scattering three hits, walking one and picking up seven strikeouts. LeBlanc now has five or more strikeouts in all of his last four starts, and he's lost only one game in his last seven appearances.

Anthony Bass worked a perfect inning in relief against Lancaster on Thursday, then he threw five innings of one-hit ball against Rancho Cucamonga in Saturday's start. In addition to the five punchouts the Padres prospect piled up in that game, he got seven groundball outs and faced the minimum after a doubleplay erased the Quakes' single in the fourth. In his last inning in the game, Bass struck out two and induced a pop-up.

Nate Freiman, the Padres' eighth-round pick in this year's Draft, has proven to be an RBI machine in the Northwest League. His 53 on the season are tops in the league, and this week's performance separated him from the competition. He began the week by knocking in a pair on Monday, and he drove in five during Tuesday's 3-for-5 performance. He had one RBI each in every game of the week, and in four of the six games he had two or more.

Padres 2008 first-round Draft pick Allan Dykstra enjoyed his best week of the season, hitting safely in each of his six games, earning an RBI in all but one and scoring in all but two. He hit homers in back-to-back games over Tuesday and Wednesday, marking the first time he's done that in his young pro career, and he doubled, collected an RBI and scored during a 3-for-4 day on Thursday. With his six walks and two whiffs this week, Dykstra now has more walks (95) on the year than strikeouts (93), especially impressive considering he's in just his first full professional season.

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