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Cubs Minor League Report: 6/16/16

South Bend inched closer to a first-half title Thursday, but Iowa couldn’t hold a lead, and Tennessee’s bats never came alive. Myrtle Beach was rained out. Eugene begins its Short-Season A campaign Friday. Here are some highlights from yesterday’s minor-league Cubs action.

Iowa Cubs (31-33)
Pacific Coast League (Triple-A)
Second Place (-2.5)

Iowa gave up a five-run ninth inning to lose to Colorado Springs, 9-8, in walk-off fashion (10 innings).

  • CF John Andreoli (.230) went 2 for 6 with a triple (5), a homer (10), an RBI (33) and two runs scored. He has three straight multi-hit games.
  • 1B Dan Vogelbach (.312) homered (12), scored two runs and walked once.
  • RF Mark Zagunis (.438) extended his multi-hit streak to six straight games, going 2 for 4 with a double (5), an RBI (4), a run and a walk.
  • LF Matt Murton (.314) finished 3 for 5 with a pair of runs.
  • 3B Jeimer Candelario (.345) went 1 for 4 with a triple (2) and a walk.

Tennessee Smokies (28-38)
Southern League (Double-A)
Fourth Place (-14.0)

The Smokies could muster only four hits as they lost to first-place Jackson, 3-2.

  • DH Kelly Dugan (.212) went 1 for 3 with a double (6) and an RBI (21).
  • 3B Chesny Young (.295) finished 1 for 4 with a triple (2) and a run.
  • 1B Ben Carhart (.224) was 1 for 4 with a double (1) and a run.
  • C Victor Caratini (.294) reached base twice, going 0 for 2 with a walk and a hit-by-pitch.
  • RHP David Berg (2.2 IP, 1 SO) faced the minimum eight batters in his 2.2 scoreless innings.

South Bend Cubs (40-26)
Midwest League (Single-A)
First Place (+1.0)

The SB-Cubs topped Lake County, 5-1, and are now one win away from clinching a first-half playoff spot.

  • RHP Preston Morrison (3.32 ERA) struck out nine in seven scoreless innings to secure the win. He has a 2.14 ERA (10 ER/42 IP) since the beginning of May, compared to a 6.11 ERA (12 ER/17.2 IP) in April.
  • DH P.J. Higgins (.284) was 2 for 4 with a double (14), an RBI (19), a run and a walk.
  • LF Eloy Jimenez (.329) went 2 for 4 with a double (22), an RBI (43) and a run scored, extending his hitting streak to 11 games (.429/18 for 42). He has hit safely in 29 of his last 32 games.
  • 1B Tyler Alamo (.282) finished 2 for 3 with an RBI (32) and a walk.
  • SS Bryant Flete (.209) went 1 for 4 with a pair of RBI (15).

Cubs Lineup: 5/11/16 vs. Padres, Game 2

Cubs vs. Padres — Wrigley Field
First Pitch: 7:05 CST
Cubs Starter: John Lackey, rhp (4-1, 4.02 ERA)
Padres Starter: Drew Pomeranz, lhp (3-3, 2.12 ERA)
TV: CSN; Radio: 670 The Score

1. Dexter Fowler, cf
2. Jason Heyward, rf
3. Kris Bryant, 3b
4. Anthony Rizzo, 1b
5. Jorge Soler, lf
6. Javy Baez, ss
7. Tommy La Stella, 2b
8. David Ross, c
9. John Lackey, p

Cubs Lineup: 5/9/16 vs. Padres

Cubs vs. Padres — Wrigley Field
First Pitch: 7:05 CST
Cubs Starter: Jon Lester, lhp (3-1, 1.58 ERA)
Padres Starter: Cesar Vargas, rhp (0-1, 1.10 ERA)
TV: CSN; Radio: 670 The Score

1. Dexter Fowler, cf
2. Jason Heyward, rf
3. Kris Bryant, lf
4. Anthony Rizzo, 1b
5. Ben Zobrist, 2b
6. Javy Baez, 3b
7. Addison Russell, ss
8. David Ross, c
9. Jon Lester, p

Cubs Lineup: 9/15/15, Game 1

Cubs vs. Pirates — PNC Park
First Pitch: 12:35 CST
Cubs Starter: Jason Hammel, RHP (8-6, 3.59 ERA)
Pirates Starter: Gerrit Cole, RHP (16-8, 2.54 ERA)
TV: CSN Chicago; Radio: WBBM 780 AM

1. Dexter Fowler, CF
2. Kyle Schwarber, LF
3. Chris Coghlan, RF
4. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
5. Kris Bryant, 3B
6. Miguel Montero, C
7. Starlin Castro, 2B
8. Jason Hammel, P
9. Addison Russell, SS

Cubs Minor League Recap: 9/13/15

Myrtle Beach claimed Game 1 of the best-of-five Mills Cup Championship Series, defeating Wilmington on the road, 3-2 in 10 innings. The second game is tonight at Wilmington.

  • RHP Jen-Ho Tseng fanned four in 6.0 innings, giving up just one earned run.
  • RF Jorge Soler finished 1-for-4 with a double, a walk, a run scored and an RBI in his second rehab game. He’s gone 2-for-6 with two doubles, two walks and two runs scored in his two games with the club.
  • C Victor Caratini went 3-for-5 with a game-winning RBI single in the 10th inning.
  • CF Pin-Chieh Chen added a multi-hit game, going 2-for-4 with a run scored.
  • RHP David Berg earned the win, tossing 2.0 scoreless innings, striking out two batters.

Cubs name OF Almora, RHP De La Cruz August players of the month

Almora_Cubs_139
Photo by Stephen Green

The Cubs named Double-A Tennessee outfielder Albert Almora and Single-A Eugene right-handed pitcher Oscar De La Cruz the organization’s Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Month for August on Thursday.

Almora, 21, batted .352 (44-for-125) with 14 doubles, one triple, one home run, 22 runs scored, 15 RBI and 11 walks in 31 August games for Tennessee. He recorded a .413 on-base percentage and a .504 slugging percentage, good for a .917 OPS. The right-handed hitter also logged a 13-game hitting streak (.434/23-for-53) from Aug. 4-16 that included seven-straight multi-hit games. He finished the month with 14 multi-hit games and hit safely in 28 of his 31 contests.

For the month, Almora led the Southern League in batting average and doubles, as well as tied for first in hits, second in runs scored, fourth in OPS, and seventh in OBP and slugging percentage. This season he is hitting .276 with 26 doubles, four triples, six homers and 69 runs scored in 104 games, all with Tennessee.

The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Almora was selected by the Cubs in the first round (sixth overall) of the 2012 draft. In his fourth season of professional baseball, he has batted .289 with 82 doubles, 13 triples and 20 home runs in 323 minor league games.

De La Cruz, 20, went 3-1 with a 2.73 ERA (9 ER/29.2 IP) in five starts with Eugene, striking out 32 batters and walking just five. He held opponents to a .209 average and a .250 on-base percentage while posting a 0.94 WHIP. He allowed zero earned runs in three of his five outings and did not walk more than one batter in four of his five starts.

De La Cruz led the Northwest League in August in innings pitched, strikeouts, opponents average and WHIP, while tying for the lead in wins and ranking sixth in ERA. He earned Pitcher of the Week honors for Aug. 24-30 after striking out a career-high 13 batters in 7.0 innings on Aug. 26 versus Spokane. He picked up the win that day, as he allowed just one hit and one unearned run in the Emeralds 4-1 triumph.

After spending each of the last two seasons with the Cubs Dominican Summer League team, De La Cruz is in his first season with Eugene and was named a Northwest League Midseason All-Star. He has gone 6-3 with a 2.84 ERA in 13 starts for the Emeralds, striking out 73 batters and walking just 17. He has recorded a 1.00 WHIP and held opponents to a .211 average. Originally signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent in October of 2012, the Dominican Republic native has gone 15-4 with a 2.60 ERA in 31 career minor league outings, all but three as a starter.

Cubs Minor League Recap: 8/31/15

Iowa, Tennessee and South Bend all reeled off victories Monday, while everybody else was off. Here are some notes from yesterday’s minor league action:

Iowa Cubs (78-58)
Pacific Coast League (Triple-A)
Second Place (-3.0)

Iowa extended its winning streak to six games, topping Oklahoma City, 9-3.

  • 1B Taylor Davis (.293) went 3-for-4, recorded three RBI (25), drew a walk and scored once. He has back-to-back three-hit games.
  • LF Mike Baxter (.279) finished 1-for-4 with two RBI (19), a walk and one run scored.
  • CF John Andreoli (.281) was 1-for-4, drew two walks, scored twice and swiped a bag (30).
  • 3B Christian Villanueva (.264) went 1-for-2, drove in one (83), scored once and drew a season-high three walks. He extended his hitting streak to five games (.400/8-for-20).

Tennessee Smokies (34-40)
Southern League (Double-A)
T-Second Place (-6.0)

Tennessee claimed its sixth straight victory, rolling past Jacksonville, 9-1.

  • CF Albert Almora (.276) went 2-for-4 with a double (26), a triple (4), a walk, two runs scored and one RBI (46). He has hit safely in 12 straight games (.360/18-for-50).
  • SS Ryan Dent (.256) extended his hitting streak to six games (.545/12-for-22), going 2-for-2 with a walk, a run scored and an RBI (24).
  • C Willson Contreras (.326) and 1B Dan Vogelbach (.284) each recorded two hits in five at-bats.
  • RF Bijan Rademacher (.260) went 1-for-3 with a bases-clearing triple (4), one run scored and a season-high four RBI (43).
  • RHP Ryan Williams (2.79) has allowed one earned run or fewer in at least 6.0 innings in five of his last six outings. He pitched 6.0 scoreless on Monday to secure the win.

South Bend Cubs (32-31)
Midwest League (Low-A)
T-Third Place (-9.0)

South Bend scored five runs in the second inning and cruised to a 10-4 victory over Bowling Green.

  • RF Jeffrey Baez (.287) went 2-for-5 with a grand slam (9) and two runs scored.
  • DH Charcer Burks (.266) went 3-for-5 with a double (22), three RBI (44), a stolen base (28) and two runs scored.
  • LF Ian Happ (.252) finished 2-for-5, including his eighth double.
  • CF Rashad Crawford (.279) went 1-for-3 with a homer (4), two RBI (48), a walk and two runs scored.
  • 1B Gioskar Amaya (.266) went 2-for-5, hit two doubles (16), plated one (42) and scored once.
  • RHP Trevor Clifton gave up one earned run in 6.0 innings, striking out three in the win.

Cubs Minor League Recap: 8/30/15

Every Cubs affiliate in action picked up a win Sunday, while Myrtle Beach was rained out. Mesa had the day off as Arizona League playoffs begin Monday. Here are some notes from yesterday’s minor league action:

Iowa Cubs (77-58)
Pacific Coast League (Triple-A)
Second Place (-4.0)

Iowa extended its winning streak to five games, topping Sacramento, 9-1. The I-Cubs picked up six doubles in the victory.

  • 3B Javier Baez (.324) went 4-for-5, drove in one (61) and scored twice. He extended his season-high hitting streak to 16 games (32-for-72/.444).
  • 2B Emilio Bonifacio (.333) also went 4-for-5 with two doubles, plated two runs and scored twice.
  • C Taylor Davis (.284) finished 3-for-5 with a double (15) and an RBI (22).
  • CF John Andreoli (.282) went 2-for-4, drew a walk, scored three times and stole a base. He leads the team with 29 swiped bags.
  • 1B Christian Villanueva (.263) went 2-for-4 with a double (21) and two RBI (82), extending his hitting streak to four games (.389/7-for-18) with seven RBI during that stretch.
  • RHP Dallas Beeler (4.17) tossed a season high 8.0 innings and earned his sixth straight win. He struck out seven and walked just one, giving up no earned runs.

Tennessee Smokies (33-30)
Southern League (Double-A)
T-Second Place (-6.0)

Tennessee won its fifth straight game, defeating Jacksonville, 4-3. The Smokies look for the series sweep tonight.

  • 3B Jeimer Candelario (.292) crushed a home run (4), going 2-for-2 with two walks and two runs scored.
  • SS Ryan Dent (.249) went 3-for-4, extending his hitting streak to five games (10-for-20/.500).
  • 2B Stephen Bruno (.267) went 2-for-4, swiped a base (9) and scored once.
  • RHP Felix Pena (3.89) snapped his six-game losing streak, earning the win after allowing just three runs (two earned) over 7.0 innings of work.

South Bend Cubs (31-31)
Midwest League (Low-A)
T-Third Place (-9.0)

South Bend topped Bowling Green in the series opener, 4-3.

  • CF Ian Happ (.246) went 2-for-4 with a homer, a double (7) and two runs scored.
  • DH Rashad Crawford (.279) went 1-for-4 with a double (15) and plated his 46th RBI.
  • 1B Kevin Encarnacion (.271) earned an RBI (15) despite going 0-for-4.
  • RHP Erick Leal (4.04) earned his third consecutive win, tossing 6.0 scoreless frames and giving up two hits.

Eugene Emeralds (19-13)
Northwest League (Short-Season A)
First Place (+1.0)

Eugene avoided the series sweep, besting Hillsboro in the series finale, 10-4.

  • DH Ian Rice (.264) went 2-for-4, knocked a double (8) and a homer (2), drove in two (19) and scored twice.
  • 1B Blake Headley (.234) went 2-for-4 and scored once.
  • CF Donnie Dewees (.268) finished 2-for-5, drove in one (28), swiped a base (16) and scored once.
  • LF Eloy Jimenez (.284) went 2-for-5 and scored once, marking his second straight multi-hit game.
  • LHP Carson Sands (3.98) tossed his second quality start of the season, fanning five and giving up one earned run in 6.0 innings.

Cubs Minor League Recap: 8/27/15

Iowa edged out a win, Tennessee cruised, and Eugene’s pitching dominated Wednesday. South Bend surrendered a late lead and couldn’t battle back, while Myrtle Beach was rained out and Mesa had the day off. Here are some notes from yesterday’s minor league action:

Iowa Cubs (73-58)
Pacific Coast League (Triple-A)
Second Place (-6.0)

RHP Carlos Pimentel collected his league-leading 12th victory as Iowa topped visiting Fresno, 3-2.

  • 3B Javier Baez (.317) went 2-for-4 with two RBI (60), extending his hitting streak to 12 games (.453/24-for-53) with 11 runs scored and 13 RBI during that stretch.
  • CF John Andreoli (.283), 2B Emilio Bonifacio (.250) and C Luke Carlin (.147) all had a hit and a run scored.
  • RHP Rafael Soriano (0.00) struck out one batter in a perfect inning of relief in his first rehab appearance with Iowa.
  • RHP Carlos Pimentel is 5-0 with a 1.76 ERA (6 ER/30.2 IP) in five August starts.

Tennessee Smokies (29-30)
Southern League (Double-A)
Third Place (-8.0)

Tennessee scored five runs in the fourth inning and cruised to an 8-4 victory over host Chattanooga.

  • CF Albert Almora (.270) went 2-for-4 with a double (25), a home run (6), two runs scored and a season-high four RBI. He has hit safely in seven straight games (.345/10-for-29).
  • 1B Dan Vogelbach (.282) went 2-for-4 with a double (14), a home run (7), a walk, two runs scored and one RBI (36). He now has three homers in his last eight games.
  • RF Bijan Rademacher (.259), 2B Stephen Bruno (.268) and 3B Wes Darvill (.176) all had multi-hit games.
  • RHP Ryan Williams (3.00) gave up one earned run in 6.0 innings, striking out three and improving to 9-3 on the season. He has won his last four decisions, allowing one earned run or fewer in 6.0 innings in each of those starts.

South Bend Cubs (29-29)
Midwest League (Low-A)
T-Third Place (-10.0)

South Bend surrendered three runs in the bottom of the eighth, falling 4-3 at West Michigan.

  • DH Charcer Burks (.266) didn’t record a hit, but walked three times and stole a base (27).
  • LF Ian Happ (.248) went 1-for-5 with a triple (3), a run scored and an RBI (19).
  • LHP Tommy Thorpe allowed just two hits and no earned runs in 7.0 innings. He has a 1.76 ERA in his last seven starts.

Eugene Emeralds (17-11)
Northwest League (Short-Season A)
First Place (+1.0)

Eugene allowed just one hit in a 4-1 victory over visiting Spokane.

  • RHP Oscar De La Cruz (2.96) struck out a career-high 13 batters and allowed just one hit in seven innings.
  • SS Andrew Ely (.321) had the only multi-hit game, going 2-for-3 with a walk.
  • DH Alex Bautista (.265) finished 1-for-4 with two RBI (11). He has hit safely in three straight games (4-for-11).

Cubs Minor League Recap: 8/23/15

Myrtle Beach mounted a late-inning comeback, South Bend snapped a losing streak, and Mesa took the win in extras on Sunday. Only Eugene lost, and they did so surrendering a lead in extras. Iowa had the day off, while Tennessee was rained out. Here are some notes from yesterday’s minor league action:

Myrtle Beach Pelicans (34-22)
Carolina League (High-A)
Second Place (-1.5)

The Pelicans scored four runs in the ninth and contained Frederick’s late rally, topping the Keys, 9-7.

  • 3B Ben Carhart (.258) enjoyed a 3-for-5 day with two home runs (6), four RBI (20) and three runs scored. He has homered in back-to-back games and extended his hitting streak to five games (.444/8-for-18).
  • C Victor Caratini (.244) went 2-for-4 with a double (25) and a two-run homer (4).
  • DH Cael Brockmeyer (.247) finished 2-for-4 with a double (6), a two-run homer (3) and two runs scored.
  • CF Pin-Chieh Chen (.277) went 2-for-5 with an RBI single (29) and one run scored.
  • RHP Brad Markey (1.31) improved to a perfect 6-0 record, earning his third consecutive win and striking out six in 5.2 innings.

South Bend Cubs (28-27)
Midwest League (Low-A)
T-Third Place (-8.0)

South Bend snapped a three-game skid, topping Fort Wayne in the series finale, 7-4.

  • LF Charcer Burks (.269) finished 3-for-4 with a three-run homer (3) and a stolen base (26).
  • RF Jeffrey Baez (.279) went 2-for-5 with a double (17), an RBI (27), a stolen base (29) and two runs scored.
  • 3B Jesse Hodges (.247) had two doubles (16), drove in one (31) and scored once.
  • DH Kevin Encarnacion (.272) went 3-for-4, scored twice and swiped two bags (5).
  • 2B David Bote (.258) went 1-for-4 and crushed a solo homer in the first inning, extending his hitting streak to six games (8-for-24/.333).

Eugene Emeralds (14-11)
Northwest League (Short-Season A)
T-First Place (–)

Eugene surrendered two runs in the ninth and ultimately fell to Spokane in the 11th inning, 4-3.

  • CF Donnie Dewees (.272) continued his tear with a 2-for-4 day that included a triple and one run scored. He has a 16-game hitting streak (.356/26-for-73) with 18 runs scored in that stretch.
  • LF Eloy Jimenez (.280) went 1-for-5, knocked a double (8), plated one (24) and scored once, extended his hitting streak to five games (.320/8-for-25).
  • SS Andrew Ely (.313) picked up his 12th RBI and added a hit.

Mesa Cubs (14-8)
Arizona Rookie League
Second Place (-0.5)

Mesa scored in the 11th inning to best the AZL Giants, 1-0. Each team recorded just five hits.

  • 3B Ho-young Son (.667) went 2-for-3 and drew a walk in his first outing with Mesa.
  • LF Roberto Caro (.255) finished 1-for-3 and swiped a base (8).
  • DH Carlos Jimenez (.232) and C Marcus Mastrobuoni (.171) each recorded a hit.
  • RHP Duane Underwood (0.00) made his second scoreless start with Mesa, allowing just two hits in 3.0 frames.
  • RHP Jared Cheek (0.00) tossed 2.0 hitless innings of relief and fanned four batters.
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