Left-hander John Means posted his sixth straight quality start Thursday in the first half of Norfolk's doubleheader with Rochester, striking out six in seven shutout innings of three-hit ball. In that span, Means, 25, has lowered his ERA from 4.25 to 3.01. Means, an 11th-round pick in 2014, has a 3.80 career minor league ERA with a 3.53 ERA over two levels this season.
Left-hander Keegan Akin is back on track after a groin problem limited him earlier this month. Akin allowed one earned run on five hits in six innings Friday against Erie, lowering his ERA to 2.83. Akin has 103 strikeouts against 48 walks in 98 2/3 innings over 18 starts, and has 10 quality starts this year.
Right-hander Matthias Dietz has struggled to carry over his success from Low-A Delmarva after his promotion to the Carolina League. Dietz, 22, has allowed nine earned runs on 13 hits with eight strikeouts against seven walks in three starts for the Keys through Friday. He earned the promotion after being named a South Atlantic League All-Star and with a 3.56 ERA for Delmarva.
Outfielder Zach Jarrett was stuck on 10 home runs for 34 games before breaking that skid with his 11th on July 11, and has three in his past nine games to leave him at 13 this season. Even without the power, Jarrett has been a consistent bat all season, as he's batting .295 and hasn't had his average dip below .279 in his first full year of pro ball.
Rookie-level GCL Orioles
A pair of top picks pitched Tuesday in the Gulf Coast League, with 2018 first-round pick Grayson Rodriguez pitching two scoreless innings to give him five innings over three professional outings without allowing a run. Cody Sedlock, the Orioles' first-round pick in 2016, followed him in his first rehabilitation outing from a shoulder injury by striking out three and allowing one hit and no runs in two innings.