8/10: Around the Cubs Minor League System

All teams were back at it on Friday.  Here is a quick recap of each game.

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The AZL Cubs lost to the Rangers 7-3 on Friday.  Duane Underwood got the start not allowing a run, but walking two in his one inning of work.  Brian Smith then came in to pitch two scoreless innings.  The next three innings decided the game as the Cubs defense let down Ethan Elias and Daniel Adrian who combined to give up all seven runs, but only two earned.  Elias took the loss.  Alvido Jimenez pitched the last three innings striking out three and not allowing a baserunner.  Shawon Dunston had a nice night going 2-for-4 with a run scored and two RBIs.  Albert Almora had a hit and drove in one on the evening.  Daniel Lockhart, Justin Marra, and David Bote all had a hit a piece, but it wasn’t enough for the Cubs tonight.

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Boise scored a bunch early and held on to win 11-8.  Daniel Vogelbach was once again the story in this one hitting two more home runs.  He now has seven in the last five games and has hit at least one in those five games.  He ended the night 3-for-4 with two home runs and five RBIs.  Jeimer Candelario also had a really nice night going 4-for-5 with two RBIs and three runs scored.  Stephen Bruno and Marco Hernandez each added two hits with Bruno knocking in one and Hernandez two.  Ian Dickson started and gave up six runs in only three innings.  He also walked four, but struck out five.  Hunter Ackerman and Rafael Diplan combined to throw the next four innings allowing one run each.  Nathan Dorris closed out the game recording his second save giving Diplan his second win of the season.

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Peoria lost to Burlington in Jorge Soler’s first game with the Chiefs.  The story that everyone wants to know is how did Soler do?  He went 1-for-4 with two RBIs hitting in fifth spot in the order.  Chad Krist had quite a night going 2-for-4, including two doubles and three RBIs.  Yaniel Cabezas also had two hits to go along with a run scored.  Dustin Geiger, Wes Darvill, and Pin-Chieh Chen each had a hit a piece with Chen scoring two runs.  Michael Jensen who has been good most of the year struggled giving up six runs on eight hits in five innings pitched.  Justin Berg struggled giving up four runs, one earned in two innings and Bryce Shafer pitched a scoreless ninth.  This was not quite the way Peoria planned things to go with Soler in the lineup, but tomorrow is a new day.

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Daytona took a 5-1 lead after three, but saw the lead slip away losing to Dunedin 8-5.  Just like with Jensen, Matt Loosen had pitched well most of the season, but did not have his best stuff on Friday allowing five runs on seven hits in just 4.1 innings.  Eduardo Figueroa pitched well in 2.2 relief innings, but Scott Weismann took the loss allowing the last three runs in his two innings of work.  Micah Gibbs and Rafael Lopez each had two hits, with Gibbs driving in two and Lopez one.  Elieser Bonne also drove in two runs for Daytona.  John Andreoli had a hit and stole a base, bringing his total on the season to an impressive 50.  Javier Baez continues to struggle going 0-for-5 and Christian Villanueva contributed with a hit and scored a run.  Really looking to see Baez get going here, he is obviously going to have to adjust and I think he will sooner than later.

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Tied at two going to the ninth Huntsville scored two off of Kevin Rhoderick and held on to beat the Smokies 4-3.  Erick Jokisch got the start and pitched well pitching six strong innings allowing one run on five hits and striking out six.  Trey McNutt gave up one unearned run in two innings of relief.  Matt Szczur is starting to figure things out at the next level going 2-for-4 with a triple, a run scored, and an RBI.  Logan Watkins and Nelson Perez each added two hits of their own with Watkins scoring and driving in a run.  Jae-Hoon Ha and Justin Bour each contributed with a hit and Matt Cerda drove in a run.

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Greg Rohan delivered a big two run single in the ninth to tie the game, but Jaye Chapman gave up a run in the bottom half as Iowa dropped a tough one to Las Vegas 4-3.  Chris Rusin got the start pitching 5.2 innings allowing three runs on eight hits in a no decision.  Michael Bowden pitched 1.1 scoreless innings and Chapman took the loss allowing the winning run.  Blake Lalli drove in the other Cubs run ending the night 1-for-4 with a double.  Tony Campana had two hits, including a double and Matt Tolbert had a hit of his own.  Both Campana and Tolbert scored a run as did James Adduci.  It was a nice comeback for Iowa, but still took the loss on Friday night in Vegas.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

8/7: Around the Cubs Minor League System

Here’s what happened in the Cubs minor league system on Tuesday night.

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The AZL Cubs got back on track beating the Angels 6-1.  The Cubs used four pitchers, all doing a nice job.  Ryan McNeil struggled with his control, but struck out four and allowed no runs in 2.1 innings.  Anthony Prieto thew two scoreless innings and Loiger Padron got his fourth win of the season striking out three in three scoreless innings.  He is now 4-0 with a 1.88 ERA.  Shawon Dunston had only one hit, but drove in an impressive three runs.  Jorge Soler went for with an RBI and Albert Almora added a hit of his own.  Both top prospects stole two bases and scored a run.  Dan Lockhart had a hit and Carlos Penalver knocked in one in the victory.  After a couple tough days for the Cubs it was back to business as usual on Tuesday night.

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Tuesday didn’t go to plan for Boise as they lost to Everett 6-3.  Dan Vogelbach hit his third home run since going to Boise and ended the night 1-for-3.  Gioskar Amaya had two more hits, including a triple and an RBI.  Izaac Garsez went 2-for-2 with a run scored and Wilson Contreras had a hit and an RBI.  Jeimer Candelario and Marco Hernandez each had a hit on Tuesday night as well.  James Pugliese pitched four innings allowing one run on six hits, while striking out six in a ND.  Michael Heesch allowed three runs in two innings and took the loss.  Boise has had a nice run as of late, so they will get back at it tomorrow.

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Starling Peralta was the story in this one as the Peoria won 5-3.  Peralta thew seven innings allowing one run on two hits and struck out 14.  Yes you read that right, he struck out 14.  Bryce Shafer struggled, but Larry Suarez came in to pitch a scoreless 1.1 innings and record his first save of the season.  Offensively had one of his best, if not his best game of his young career.  He went 4-for-4 with two doubles, one triple, four runs scored, and a stolen base.  Chadd Krist and Wes Darvill each had two hits, and Krist drove in two runs.  Pin-Chieh Chen and Yaniel Cabezas each added a hit and an RBI.  Peralta really just put the Chiefs on his back in this one and had night to remember.

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Daytona picked up the win beating Lakeland 6-1.  Austin Kirk was good giving up one run on four hits in 5.2 innings.  He got the win and improved his record to 7-3.  Jeffrey Lorick and AJ Morris combined to pitch the last 3.3 innings allowing no runs.  It took a couple of games, but Javier Baez finally had his coming out party in Daytona.  He went 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs.  Christian Villanueva was 1-for-3 with a double and two RBIs.  Rubi Silva added an RBI and John Andreoli went 2-for-3 with a run scored and three stolen bases, he now has 47 on the year.  Everyone else in the lineup contributed with a hit on Tuesday as it was one of those rare games where everyone ends with a hit.

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A six run first was way too much to come back from for Tennessee as they lost to Jackson 10-4.  In his second start with the Smokies Jacob Brigham really struggled giving up six runs on six hits in just 0.2 innings.  The Smokies would use five more pitchers on the evening.  Kevin Rhoderick pitched better than he has been pitching 1.1 scoreless ball.  Brian Schlitter and Dustin Harrington combined to pitch the last 2.1 innings not allowing a run.  Need I say it, Justin Bour was 2-for-3 with yet another RBI and Nelson Perez had two hits of his own.  Matt Szczur, Logan Watkins, and Matt Cerda all had triples on Tuesday.  Junior Lake, Nate Samson, and Chad Noble all contributed with an RBI a piece.  It was definitely a tough start for Brigham, but the Smokies will look to get back on track tomorrow.

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Iowa put up seven on Tuesday and that was enough as the beat Reno 7-4.  Ty’Relle Harris was quite impressive pitching six innings allowing only two runs and striking out five.  Jaye Chapman pitched a scoreless 0.2 innings, striking out both outs he recorded.  Jairo Asencio earned his first save by striking out one in one inning.  Dave Sappelt had a nice night going 2-for-4 with two RBIs.  James Adduci hit a double and knocked in three and Alfredo Amezaga added two hits and scored two runs.  Matt Tolbert added a double and drove in one run .  It is nice to see Iowa get a win, hope they can keep it going.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

8/3: Around the Cubs Minor League System

Minor league recap for August 3, 2012.

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The AZL Cubs continued their tear beating the AZL D-Backs for their fifth straight victory.  It wasn’t as easy as it should have been however as the D-Backs scored five times in the ninth, but the Cubs hang on to win 7-5.  Dillon Maples made his second start on his road to recovery and turned in some solid work going 1.2 innings only allowing one hit while walking two and striking out one.  Paul Blackburn, one of two 2012 supplemental draft picks continued his strong season.  Blackburn worked 3.1 innings allowing only one hit while walking one and striking out two to earn his second victory of the season and lower his ERA to 1.86.  2012 draft picks Corbin Hoffner and Jasvir Rakkar also worked scoreless innings.  It was another night of fireworks from the AZL Cubs offense.  Albert Almora, who is on fire right now, went 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, and a run scored.  Shawon Dunston, and Ben Carhart each had two hits on the night with Carhart recording his 8th double of the season.  Jacob Rogers had a big night at the plate as well going 3-for-4 with a double, an RBI, a walk, and three runs scored.

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The Boise Hawks raced out to a 4-0 lead, and held a 5-2 lead by the 5th inning but couldn’t hang on as Spokane plated three runs in the 8th on their way to a 6-5 win.  Jose Arias didn’t get very deep into this one for the Hawks as he tossed 2.2 innings giving up two runs on four hits while walking three and striking out three.  Arias left with the lead, but Hayden Simpson couldn’t hang onto it.  Simpson worked 4.1 innings giving up three runs on six hits while striking out six.  Eduardo Orozco only gave up only one run in his inning of work, but that was the deciding run as Orozco was hung with his first loss of the season.  Gioskar Amaya had another solid night at the plate, what else is new?  Amaya was 2-for-4 with his ninth triple of the season, an RBI, a walk, and a run scored, he is now hitting .315.  Daniel Vogelbach continued to be a doubles machine as he was 1-for-3 at the plate with his 5th double while with Boise.  Rock Shoulders had a productive night as well going 1-for-4 with his 6th home run of the season, a two run shot.

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The Chiefs jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead against Quad Cities but couldn’t hang as they fell 4-2.  Yao-Lin Wang continued his transition to the starting rotation as he went 5.1 innings giving up two runs on four hits while walking three and striking out six.  Wang left with the game tied at two, and unfortunately Jeffry Antigua could keep the River Bandits off the board.  Antigua went 1.2 innings giving up two runs on three hits while striking out two earning his first loss of the season.  Javier Baez continued his assault on Single-A pitching in the loss as he was 2-for-4 with his 12th home run of the season, he also stole his 20th base.  Baez is now hitting .336 on the season, and there are whispers that he is close to earning a promotion.  Zeke DeVoss had a solid night at the top of the Chiefs order going 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored.

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The D-Cubs fell behind early, and couldn’t dig out of that hole as they dropped this one to Dunedin 6-2.  Kyler Burke started for the D-Cubs, and was responsible for that hole I was talking about.  Burke gave up three runs in the first and then settled down after that.  He went five innings giving up three runs on four hits while walking two and striking out four.  Hunter Cervenka had a rare awful outing as he struggled with his command in two innings of work, walking four and giving up three runs, two earned.  Rubi Silva continued his strong 2012 season at the plate going 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored, he is now hitting .302 on the campaign.   Christian Villanueva followed up his stellar Cubs debut by going 1-for-4 with a double and a spectacular catch in the field that I’m hoping to get video of shortly.

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Smokies postponed, again.

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Things seem to go from bad to worse for Iowa each night.  Tonight was no different as the I-Cubs battled Colorado Springs all game before surrendering three runs in the top of the ninth to lose 4-1.  Ryan Rowland-Smith got the start tonight and was outstanding as he went six strong innings giving up one run on two hits while walking three and striking out six.  Jaye Chapman, who was acquired from the Braves a couple of days ago took the loss as he was knocked around in the ninth.  Chapman worked one inning giving up three runs on three hits while walking one, he fell to 0-1 on the season.  The I-Cubs were dreadful with runners in scoring position, and they had plenty of chances too, when it was all said and done they were 0-for-10 in the loss.  Josh Vitters had a big night once again for Iowa, he went 3-for-4 with his 32nd double of the season.  Vitters is now hitting .304 on the season as he continues to try to force the Cubs hand and give them no choice but to award him the promotion he deserves.  Dylan Heuer has some great photo’s from the game, head on over to his website to check them out!

Thanks for reading,
– George

8/1: Around the Cubs Minor League System

August 1, nightly recap of the minor leagues.

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The AZL Cubs had a double header on Wednesday, with each game being seven innings a piece.  The pitching did a great job in the first one winning 4-0.  The 43rd overall pick in this past years draft Pierce Johnson made his first appearance of the season.  He started and pitched one scoreless inning.  Carlos Martinez-Pumarino improved to 4-0 pitching four scoreless innings in relief.  He gave up three hits, one walk, and struck out three, his ERA on the season is 0.93.  Steve Perakslis secured the shutout by striking out five in two scoreless innings.  Albert Almora was back in the lineup and leading off on Wednesday.  He delivered going 3-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI.  Jorge Soler was 2-for-4 with a run scored and three stolen bases.  Ben Carhart had a double and an RBI.

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The AZL Cubs had a good time of it in game two as well defeating the AZL Indians 7-2.  Ben Carhart was 2-for-4 with twor runs scored and Yasiel Balaguert also had two runs with a run scored.  Trevor Gretzky had one hit and an RBI and Neftali Rosario collected two RBIs without getting a basehit.  Albert Almora didn’t have a hit, but collected his sixth RBI of the season and Jorge Soler was 0-2, but walked twice and scored two runs.  Brian Smith started for the Cubs and thew two perfect innings while striking out two.  Loiger Padron improved his record to 3-0 with his win in relief.  he gave up two runs, but struck out six in three innings of work.  Alvido Jimenez closed out the game striking out three in two scoreless innings.

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Boise was back at it and won again on Wednesday.  After getting a big lead early, they gave up nine runs in the last four innings, but held on to win 14-10.  There were a lot of good things happening offensively in this one.  Xavier Batista was 3-for-5 with two doubles, a home run, and three RBIs.  Jeimer Candelario and Dong-Yub Kim each had two hits and drove in three as well.  Stephen Bruno hit his first home run of the season, a two run shot in the third inning.  Daniel Vogelbach and Trey Martin each two hits with Martin scoring three runs.  Lance Rymel had quite a nice night going 3-for-4 with an RBI.  It was a tale of two games on the mound.  Su-Min Jung started and pitched well allowing one run on three hits in three innings, while striking out three.  Nathan Dorris got his first win of the season as he pitched the next two scoreless innings.  Unfortunately Tyler Bremer and Willengton Cruz both struggled, but a win is a win.

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Peoria won a crazy one on Wednesday scoring three in the top of the ninth to win 11-10.  The day belonged to Dustin Geiger.  Geiger was 3-for-5 with a double, two home runs and eight RBIs, yes eight RBIs.  He stole the show early and finished it late with a two run bomb that turned out to be the game winner.  Javier Baez had two more hits, including a double.  He also scored two runs and drove one in.  Zeke DeVoss and Pin-Chieh Chen each had two hits, with Chen scoring three.  Zach Cates started and didn’t have his best stuff, but came away with a no decision.  Bryce Shafer got the win striking out four of the five outs he recorded.  Austin Reed picked up his first save of the season pitching a scoreless ninth.  Congrats to Geiger on just an ubelievable game.

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Daytona scored one in the fifth and one in the seventh to win a pitchers dual 2-1.  Lendy Castillo continued his comeback throwing four innings, giving up three hits and allowing an unearned run.  He had four strikeouts in the start.  Eduardo Figueroa got the win, his third of the season pitching three scoreless innings.  Scott Weismann and Jeffrey Lorick combined to pitch the last two innings, with Lorick earning his second save of the season.  Rubi Silva was 1-for-4, but drove in the two Cubs runs on Wednesday.  Ronald Torreyes continued hitting the ball going 2-for-3.  John  Andreoli and Taylor Davis each had two hits in the contest.  It was a good win for Daytona.

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Because of rain Tennessee had another double header on Wednesday.  The first one was a continuation of the night before.  The Smokies got two in the fifth, winning 4-2.  There were a couple bright spots on the mound.  Dae-Eun Rhee started and took a no-decision pitching four solid innings only allowing one run on three hits.  Trey McNutt got the win in relief pitching three innings allowing one run on two hits and Kevin Rhoderick recorded his eighth save of the season striking out three in two scoreless innings.  Justin Bour was 1-for-4 with another RBI.  Greg Rohan went 1-for-2 with an RBI and Nate Samson was 1-for-2 with a home run and two RBIs.

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One was all Tennessee needed as  Justin Bour was the hero hitting a walk off home run in the bottom of the seventh.  He now has 12 home runs and 86 RBIs on the season.  Dallas Beeler started and was tremendous allowing only one hit in five scoreless innings of work.  Brian Schlitter picked up his second win in relief pitching the final two frames.  Junior Lake, Nelson Perez, and Matt Cerda all had one hit a piece in the victory.  Two wins to start the month is the right way to start it.

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Iowa was able to score six, but an eight run inning was way too much to come back from losing 11-6.  We’ll start with the offense in this one.  Brett Jackson was 3-for-5 with a double, triple, and a run scored.  Josh Vitters hit his 16th home run of the season and had two RBIs.  Greg Rohan, who was just promoted from AA was 3-for-4 with two home runs and three RBIs.  James Adduci collected two more hits including a triple and an RBI.  Ty’Relle Harris got the start and took the loss as he was not very sharp.  Michael Bowden did a very nice job striking out six in three innings and recently acquired Jaye Chapman threw a scoreless inning in relief.

All around it was a nice night for the Cubs minor leaguers with the only loss coming in Iowa.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

A Look at What the Cubs Got Back on Monday Night

So we know the Cubs have traded away Geovany Soto to the Rangers and packaged Paul Maholm and Reed Johnson to the Braves, but what did we get back.  The Cub got back three pitchers, which we knew they wanted to get deeper at as an organization.  Here is a quick look at the pitchers we go back.

Starting with the Paul Maholm and Reed Johnson to the Braves deal.

Arodys Vizcaino
Vizcaino is 21-year old right-handed pitcher who has missed the entire season due to Tommy-John surgery was ranked #3 in the Braves system and #54 prospect in baseball according to Jonathan Mayo.  Last year Vizcaino was said to be one of the four untouchable arms in the Braves system.  The Cubs are taking a big gamble that he will come back healthy and be durable, but for Reed Johnson and Paul Maholm it is a great chance to take in my opinion.  His fastball sits in the low to mid 90’s with a plus changeup and good curve ball.  Hope he comes back healthy and at 21, he should have a great chance to.  Until he does the Cubs will hope he can be a starter, but time will tell.

Jaye Chapman
Chapman is a 25-year old RH relief pitcher who is currently in Triple-A.  He is 3-6 with 7 saves and a 3.52 ERA this season.  He also has 60 strikeouts in 29 walks in 53.2 innings.  He is not a huge prospect, but hope he can be a quality arm at sometime out of the pen.  I like that he is averaging over a strikeout an inning.  We will see, he obviously wasn’t the centerpiece of the deal with the Braves, but to get some quality out of the pen would be nice.

Now to the Soto deal.

Jacob Brigham
Brigham is a 24-year old RH starting pitcher who is currently pitching in Double-A.  He is currently 5-5 with 4.28 ERA.  He has started all 21 games he has pitched in striking out 116 in 124 innings.  His last two outing have been really good and the Cubs obviously see something there.  He hasn’t had great numbers yet, but we will see what happens.  As we know the pitching depth is not great for the Cubs so getting a pitcher for Soto, who has been a disappointment the last couple years is a fine return in my mind.

The Cubs needed to get more pitching depth and they did that with these deals.  They didn’t move any of their big names, although Maholm has been pitching really good and it seems they got decent return, especially with Vizcaino coming over even though it’s after Tommy-John.  When you work with prospects you never know if it was a good return or not for a few years.  I’m sure there will be more coming tonight or tomorrow, so we will as always keep you updated.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

 

Paul Maholm and Reed Johnson Traded

Paul Maholm and Reed Johnson have been traded to the Atlanta Braves.  No word yet on who the Cubs are getting back in return.  Check back for updates.

Update:  Wow, the Cubs were able to get back two pitchers, Arodys Vizcaino plus Jaye Chapman from the Atlanta Braves.  Vizcaino is really nice piece with a lot of upside.  He missed the year due to Tommy-John Surgery, but was the Braves #3 pitching prospect coming into the year.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark