Down on the Farm Report – 8/07/07

With Alfonso Soriano going on the DL for the first time in his career on Monday, the Cubs selected Eric Patterson from Iowa to take his place on the active roster. The Cubs also DFA’d Brian Dopirak in order to make room for Patterson on the 40-man roster.

The farm system is continuing to play a big role this season. Lou Piniella announced on Monday that Eric Patterson will split time in left field while Soriano is out and he will start the second game of the Astros’ series on Tuesday. There was also a blurb on that mentioned they are considering giving one of their minor league pitchers a “spot start to give the starters a breather.” Of the pitchers currently on the 40-man roster only Juan Mateo and Sean Gallagher could be used in that role.

Now to the rest of the minors….

Iowa Cubs – Record: 64-52

Iowa has won four in a row since the last update to pull within 5 1/2 games of first place Nashville. Helping the I-Cubs on offense again is Geovany Soto. Over the last four games he is 8-of-16 with two home runs, eight RBI’s and seven runs scored. Soto has been on fire since he was sent back to Iowa. I haven’t read anything that explains why Chicago hasn’t called him back up to play instead of Koyie Hill. Hill hasn’t been able to get it done at the plate but he has done well calling games. That is the only reason I see for keeping him with the big club for now.

After Soto, those also helping on offense included Jake Fox and Eric Patterson. Fox was 6-of-16 with a home run, five RBI’s and a stolen base. Eric Patterson was 7-of-16 with two RBI’s and two stolen bases before his callup on Monday.

From the mound, Kevin Hart won for the 2nd time since arriving at Iowa. He pitched 6.2 innings giving up an earned run on three hits and four walks while striking out three. He has pitched well at Iowa since arriving in the second week of July. He has also helped himself on offense going 7-of-11 with five RBI’s in his four starts. The Cubs picked up Hart from Baltimore in the Freddie Bynum deal.

Sean Gallagher also pitched well going 7.0 innings and giving up an earned run on five hits and no walks while striking out five. With the Cubs in need of a long reliever, I think Gallagher is the guy that could do well for them.

Tennessee Smokies – Record: 22-22

The Smokies are 1-3 since the last update including three losses in a row. Helping on offense was Kyle Reynolds going 6-of-17 with two RBI’s. Alan Rick was 5-of-11 with a home run and four RBI’s.

From the mound, Jason Berg had the best outing going 7.0 innings giving up three earned runs on eight hits and a walk while striking out one. He picked up his fifth win to go with seven losses.

Latest News: Mitch Atkins (RHP) and Matt Camp (OF) were promoted from Daytona. Jeff Samardzija was scheduled to start last night and I will have an update about his start with Tennessee on Friday.

Daytona Cubs – Record: 18-25

Daytona split their four games since the last update and are 7 1/2 games out of first in their division. Brian Dopirak has become the threat he was supposed to be, just in time to be DFA’d on Monday. In the last four games he was 5-of-15 with two home runs and four RBI’s. Ryan Harvey was 6-of-18 with two home runs and six RBI’s.

Joel Santo pitched well last Thursday and picked up his 8th win of the season. He went 7.0 innings giving up an earned run on four hits and three walks while striking out four.

Peoria Chiefs – Record: 24-18

Peoria is struggling to win right now and were 1-3 since the last update. They have fallen down to third place and sit 1 1/2 games out of first. Blake Lalli was 5-of-12 hitting and beyond his performance there wasn’t anything else worth noting. The offense has looked anemic lately and the pitching hasn’t been any better. They have been playing well in the 2nd half of the season so I hope they can turn things around soon.

Boise Hawks – Record: 22-24

Boise also split their four games played but continue to lead their division. On offense, Jonathon Wyatt was 6-of-15 with a home run and five RBI’s. Tony Thomas had a good run going 7-of-15 with five runs scored and five stolen bases, including four in one game. The Cubs selected Thomas in the 3rd round of this year’s amateur draft out of Florida State. Ty Wright was 4-of-12 with three RBI’s and a stolen base.

The only pitcher of note for the Hawks this time around is Jordan Latham. He pitched 3.0 innings of relief giving up an unearned run on four hits and a walk while striking out three. Latham earned his first win for the effort.

Check back on Friday for the latest from the farm.

Quote of the Day

"Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere." - Albert Einstein