Right-hander Vincent Velasquez, the Astros' No. 8 prospect, struck out a career-high 11 batters in six scoreless innings Thursday, helping Class A Advanced Lancaster defeat High Desert, 12-0.
Making his fourth appearance for Lancaster since returning from a two-month stint on the disabled list due to a groin injury, Velasquez pitched past the fifth inning for the first time this season. He held High Desert to three hits, two walks and one hit batter.
Velasquez's previous career high for strikeouts was 10, which he recorded in his final rehab game in the Gulf Coast League last month. Thursday marked the first time the 22-year old reached double-digit strikeouts in a game in a full-season league.
Lancaster's offense was led by center fielder Brett Phillips, who went 3-for-5 and finished a single short of the cycle. Third baseman Rio Ruiz, the Astros' No. 9 prospect, went 2-for-5 with a double and two runs. He is hitting .302/.393/.453 in 115 games this season.
With the victory, Velasquez improved to 6-2 with a 2.54 ERA in 12 games with the JetHawks this season. He has struck out 57 batters and walked 16 in 46 innings.