Cubs Claim Julio Borbon From Rangers (UPDATE: Gonzalez DFA’d)

Julio Borbon was designated for assignment by the Rangers last week, they were unable to work out a trade so he was placed on waivers on Wednesday.  The Cubs Borbonclaimed Borbon today, intriguing move considering they already signed Ryan Sweeney, a left-handed hitting outfielder, which is what Borbon is, and now a spot on the 40 man roster needs to be cleared to make room for him.  Borbon has also produced, he’s a career .283 hitter having 685 at bats in the Majors, and a career .324 on base percentage.  All of these numbers coming at the age of twenty-three to twenty-five, then didn’t play last year, one would think he would be a candidate to be on the active roster given the fact that he is out of minor league options.  This also could be the start of something else that is going on, I don’t want to speculate too much but there are simply too many players right now that are on the 40 man roster that are similar to Borbon.  The Cubs have Brett Jackson at Iowa, Ryan Sweeney at Iowa, Brian Bogusevic at Iowa, Dave Sappelt in Chicago, and David DeJesus in Chicago.  My guess is that he will replace Sappelt on the active roster and Sappelt will hit waivers but that’s just an educated guess at this point.

(UPDATE) Alberto Gonzalez has been DFA’d in a corresponding move to make room for Borbon.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Minor Matters – April 15, 2013 (Cubs Minor League Recaps)

Iowa 4-15 lineFull Box Score

At The Plate – The Cubs built an early lead but once again had trouble holding it as they dropped to 3-9 on the season.  Darwin Barney had a huge game in his last rehab appearance, he was 4-for-5 with a double, and two runs scored.  Ryan Sweeney continues to mash the ball, he went 2-for-4 with a home run (3), three RBI’s and a run scored.  Brett Jackson was 1-for-3 at the plate with a walk, a stolen base, and a run scored.

On The Mound –  The Cubs were beat up from start to finish in this one.  Drew Carpenter got the start, he went 4.1 innings giving up five runs on seven hits while walking two and striking out one.  Emailin Caridad went 1.2 innings out of the pen giving up one run on three hits while striking out three.  Both Jensen Lewis and Jaye Chapman continued their horrendous 2013 as Lewis gave up two runs, and Chapman gave up three.

Smokies 4-15 lineFull Box Score

At The Plate Jae-Hoon Ha continued his red-hot start going 2-for-3 with two walks, a double, an RBI, and a run scored.  Rubi Silva has been the hottest hitter in the Smokies lineup, he was 3-for-4 with a home run (2), four RBI’s, a double, and two runs scored, he’s now hitting .394 on the season.  Jonathan Mota was 2-for-4 in the loss.

On The MoundDallas Beeler put together a quality start and was in line for the win before the bullpen lost it.  Beeler went six innings giving up three runs on four hits while walking three and striking out four.  Tony Zych went 1.1 innings out of the pen giving up two runs on two hits while walking one.  Trey McNutt had a rough go of it as he not only blew the save but got the loss, he went 1.1 innings giving up three runs on three hits while walking two.

Daytona 4-15 lineFull Box Score

At The Plate – The D-Cubs continued to pound the ball in a 8-1 victory over Clearwater to move one game above .500 on the season.  Zeke DeVoss was very productive from the lead-off spot going 2-for-4 with a walk, a triple, and three RBI’s.  John Andreoli was 2-for-5 with two runs scored, he’s now hitting .341 on the season.  Ben Carhart went 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI, and two runs scored.  Stephen Bruno (2-for-4) and David Bote (2-for-3) each had two hits in the win as Daytona pounded out thirteen total.

On The MoundBen Wells was outstanding as he found his command in this one.  Wells went six scoreless innings to earn his first win, he gave up five hits while walking one and striking out four.  Yeiper Castillo went two scoreless innings out of the pen, he gave up one hit while striking out two.  Sheldon McDonald worked the ninth inning, he gave up one run on three hits while striking out one.

NOTES:  Kane County was snowed/rained out….again, shocking.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Minor Matters – April 11, 2013 (Cubs Minor League Recaps)

Iowa 4-11 lineFull Box Score

At The Plate – The I-Cubs were shut down tonight as they could only manage three hits in the 2-0 loss.  Brett Jackson was 1-for-3 with a walk and a stolen base.  Ryan Sweeney (1-for-4), and Ty Wright (1-for-3) were the only Cubs to get hits.  The Cubs did walk three times, but struck out nine times and were 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position.

On The MoundBrooks Raley was outstanding, unfortunately the result was his second loss of the season.  Raley went seven strong innings giving up two runs on eight hits, he didn’t walk anyone and struck out seven.  Jensen Lewis tossed a scoreless frame out of the bullpen surrendering only one hit.

Smokies 4-11 lineFull Box Score

At The Plate – Not much offense at all for the Smokies as they could only manage three runs on five hits, and only had two runners in scoring position all night.  Arismendy Alcantara was 1-for-3 with a walk, a stolen base, and a run scored.  Christian Villanueva was 1-for-4 with a double, and RBI, and a run scored.  Jair Fernandez was 2-for-4 with an RBI, both hits were singles.

On The MoundAlberto Cabrera got the start for the Smokies and got touched up a bit.  He worked six innings giving up four runs on eight hits while walking two and striking out five and was hung with the loss.  Marcus Hatley struggled out of the pen as he went two innings giving up two run on three hits while walking one and striking out three.  Brian Schlitter worked a scoreless inning giving up one hit and striking out one.

Daytona 4-11Full Box Score

At The Plate – The D-Cubs were able to pound out nine hits in this one, unfortunately they could only push across two runs and were 0-for-7 with runners in scoring position.  Taiwan Easterling continued his hot start going 2-for-4 with a double, he’s now hitting .333 on the season.  Stephen Bruno is also on fire, he went 2-for-4 as well with a double, a stolen base, and a run scored, he’s hitting .370 on the season.  Dustin Geiger has been on fire the last three games, he went 2-for-4 tonight with a double and an RBI.

On The Mound – Not a lot of good for the D-Cubs tonight, but they only used two pitchers.  Starling Peralta got the start and got knocked around, but he didn’t walk anyone, so there’s that.  Peralta went six innings giving up six runs on eight hits with seven strike outs, he did however give up four home runs, ouch.  Yeiper Castillo followed Peralta and had the same success, or lack thereof.  Castillo worked three innings giving up six runs on seven hits while walking one and striking out one.

NOTES:  Kane County was rained out, and Jorge Soler served game one of his five game suspension tonight.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Minor Matters – April 9, 2013

Iowa 4-9 line

Full Box Score

At The Plate – The Iowa Cubs are scuffling, with the latest loss they fall to 0-6 on the season.  Brett Jackson had a solid game going 2-for-4 with a triple, and a run scored, he’s now hitting .280 on the season.  Darnell McDonald was 1-for-3 with a walk, a home run, an RBI, and a run scored.  Ty Wright was 2-for-4 with two singles in the loss.

On The MoundChris Rusin was roughed up early then settled in but couldn’t escape the loss.  Rusin went six innings giving up four runs on seven hits while walking four and striking out two.  Zach Putnam and Rafael Dolis both tossed scoreless innings out of the bullpen in the loss.

Daytona 4-9 line

Full Box Score

At The Plate – The D-Cubs spent the whole night fighting back, but in the end couldn’t catch the Threshers.  Zeke DeVoss showed some power from the lead-off spot going 1-for-5 with a home run, an RBI, and a run scored.  Javier Baez was 1-for-5 with a triple, and a run scored.  Jorge Soler continues his torrid start to the season going 2-for-4 with a walk, and an RBI.  The D-Cubs made four errors, that most definitely cost them in this one.

On The MoundZach Cates made the start and as I just mentioned didn’t get much help from the guys behind him.  Cates went 3.2 innings giving up three runs, one earned, on six hits while walking none and striking out seven.  Eduardo Figueroa went 2.2 innings out of the pen giving up two runs on one hits while walking two and striking out three.  Sheldon McDonald was solid going 2.2 innings giving up no runs on two hits while walking two and striking out one.

Kane County 4-9 line

Full Box Score

At The Plate – The Cougars smacked the ball all over the place in this one as  six different guys had multi-hit games.  Daniel Vogelbach was 3-for-5 bring his season average up to .310, all three hits were singles.  Rock Shoulders might be the hottest hitter in the Cubs system, he went 2-for-3 with a walk, a home run, an RBI, and two runs scored, he’s hitting .480 (12-for-25) on the season.  Gioskar Amaya, Jeimer Candelario, Marco Hernandez, and Bijan Rademacher all had two hits.

On The MoundPierce Johnson had a rough start to this one as he gave up two runs in the first as he struggled with command, but he found it quickly.  Johnson went five innings giving up two runs on six hits while walking two and striking out four.  Jeffry Antigua was solid out of the pen going three innings giving up one run on four hits while walking none and striking out one.  Eduardo Orozco had some tough luck in blowing the save, but ended up getting the win.  Orozco gave up two runs, both unearned on NO hits, and one walk in one inning.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Minor Matters – April 8, 2013

Iowa 4-8 line

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At The Plate – Things have not gone well for the Iowa Cubs, that is reflected in their now 0-5 record.  Logan Watkins led off today as was great going 2-for-4 with a home run, a double, an RBI, and two runs scored, he’s now hitting .368 on the season.  Brett Jackson had a solid game going 2-for-4 with a double, and two RBI’s.  Newcomer Donnie Murphy went 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored in the loss.

On The Mound – Really rough go of it for the I-Cubs pitchers.  Barret Loux got the start and was beat up giving up six runs on three hits while walking three walks and striking out two in only one inning of work.  Jaye Chapman worked 2.2 innings giving up two runs on two hits while walking three without a strike out.  Cory Wade got roughed up giving up five runs on eight hits while striking out one in three innings of work.  Blake Parker worked 1.1 scoreless innings while walking one and striking out two.

Smokies 4-8 line

Full Box Score

At The PlateMatt Szczur continued his solid work out of the lead-off spot going 2-for-3 with a run scored, and a stolen base.  Arismendy Alcantara who was hitting in the two hole was 2-for-4, but also made two errors.  The rest of the Smokies lineup could only manage one hit in the 2-1 loss.

On The Mound – Really solid effort from the Smokies pitchers in this one.  Dae-Eun Rhee got the start and was decent, he struggled a bit with his command in 4.1 innings of work giving up one run on two hits while walking three and striking out one.  Brian Schlitter was the tough luck loser in this one, he worked 1.2 innings giving up one run, unearned, on two hits while walking one.  Zach Rosscup and Trey McNutt each worked a scoreless inning to keep things close.

Kane County 4-8 line

Full Box Score

At The Plate – Finally a win for the Cougars, they did plenty offensively but had to work overtime after a blown save, more on that in a bit.  Gioskar Amaya broke out today after a slow start to the season, he was 3-for-5 with a triple, a stolen base, and a run scored.  Chadd Krist was 3-for-5 with two doubles, ans two runs scored.   Bijan Rademacher did most of the damage today going 3-for-5 with three RBI’s.  Rock Shoulders stayed red hot at the plate going 2-for-5 with a run scored, he’s now hitting .455 on the season.

On The MoundLendy Castillo who is transitioning to a starting role was fantastic in his 2013 debut.  Castillo went five strong innings giving up one run on three hits while walking two and striking out four, unfortunately he had a win snatched from him.  Brian Smith was solid out of the pen going two scoreless innings giving up one hit while walking one and striking out one.  Justin Amlung blew the save but also got the win, he worked three innings giving up four runs on four hits while walking one and striking out three.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Minor Matters – April 7, 2013

Iowa 4-7 line

Full Box Score

At The Plate – Not a whole lot going on for the Iowa Cubs in their fourth straight loss to start the season.  They could only manage three runs on four hits as they were swept by the Isotopes.  Ryan Sweeney had his second straight solid game going 2-for-3 with a home run, a walk, and RBI, and a run scored.  Brett Jackson was 1-for-4 with a runs scored, the I-Cubs were o-for-5 with runners in scoring position.

On The Mound – 2012 minor league pitcher of the year Nick Struck got the start, and also the loss in this one.  Struck went five innings giving up four runs on eight hits while walking none and striking out one.  Casey Coleman worked two innings giving up two runs on three hits while walking two and striking out two.  Jensen Lewis also gave up a run in an inning of work on two hits.

Smokies 4-7 line

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At The Plate – The Smokies staged a late comeback that came up one run short.  Matt Szczur was 1-for-4 from the lead-off spot with a walk, a stolen base, and a run scored, he’s now hitting .368 on the season.  Justin Bour was 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, an RBI, and a run scored.  Jae-Hoon Ha was 1-for-4 with a walk, a stolen base, an RBI, and a run scored, he is now hitting .389 on the season.

On The Mound Kyle Hendricks got the start, and had a rough go of it.  Hendrick went five innings giving up five runs on eight hits while walking two and striking out five, he took the loss.  Tony Zych (1.2 innings) and A.J. Morris (1.1 innings) each had scoreless appearances out of the bullpen.

Daytona 4-7 line

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At The Plate – The D-Cubs are finding a grove right now, they are winning convincingly, and now have won three straight.  It was the Jorge Soler show again as he went 2-for-4 with a walk, a home run, two RBI’s, and two runs scored, he is now hitting .438 on the season.  Stephen Bruno continued his hot start to the season going 2-for-4 with a walk, an RBI, and two runs scored, he’s hitting .385 on the season.  John Andreoli tops them all however as he went 2-for-3 with two walks, a triple, an RBI, and two runs scored, he’s hitting a robust .467 on the season.

On The MoundP.J. Francescon was outstanding this afternoon, he went five scoreless innings, he gave up only one hit while walking one and striking out six.  Yeiper Castillo (2.0 innings), Luis Liria (1.0 inning), and Austin Reed (1.0 inning) all had scoreless appearances to close this one out.

Cougars 4-7 line

Full Box Score

At The Plate – Pitchers duel in this one, only thirteen combined hits in thirteen innings as Kane County dropped their fourth straight.  Oliver Zapata had another solid game going 2-for-5 with a walk and a caught stealing, he’s now hitting .357 on the season.  Rock Shoulders continues his torrid start going 2-for-3, he’s now hitting .471 on the season.  Willson Contreras was 1-for-3 with a walk, and an RBI in the loss.

On The MoundMichael Heesch was outstanding this afternoon, he went 6.1 innings giving up one run on one hit while walking two and striking out five.  Felix Pena was just as solid out of the pen going 5.2 scoreless innings giving up three hits while walking one and striking out five.  Eduardo Orozco got the loss as he gave up two runs in his inning of work on two hits while walking one.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Struggle to Find Runs In Castro’s Return

The Cubs lost to the Rockies 2-0 yesterday, that’s alright, because the bigger news was that Starlin Castro returned to the lineup and looked no worse for wear.

Full Box Score

At the plate:

Darwin Barney had a solid day going 2-for-3, Brett Jackson, Steve Clevenger, and Starlin Castro were all 1-for-1, and Scott Hariston tallied the only other hit for the Cubs.  They only managed six all day, and all of them were singles.

On the mound:

Edwin Jackson was stellar, going five innings giving up one run on three hits while walking one and striking out two.  Kyuji Fujikawa had a rare sub par outing as he struggled with command giving up one run in one inning of work on one hit, while walking two and striking out two.  Cory Wade, Carlos Marmol, and Jensen Lewis all tossed scoreless, uneventful innings in the loss.

Spring Record: (7-11)

Up Next:

Cubs face the Dodgers, and Chris Rusin gets the ball, Rusin has been pretty darn good so far this Spring, and is slated to join the Iowa rotation this year.

Thanks for reading,
– George