Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 05/24/10

One Cub affiliate has won six straight games. Another leads their league in team batting average and runs scored. Three of the four affiliates have winning records! Andrew Cashner is finding success in Iowa.

All that and more in today’s Down on the Farm Report!

AAA-Iowa Cubs – (24-18)
The Iowa Cubs have been on fire. Ryne Sandberg’s club has pulled off six straight victories and has won 12 of their last 13 games! The winning streak has pulled the I-Cubs close to the division leading Nashville Sounds … they are just 1.5 games back. The Iowa team’s success certainly isn’t hurting Ryno’s chance of becoming a big league skipper in the near future.

On Friday the Cubs were winners behind a strong outing by Mitch Atkins. Atkins gave up three runs on two homers in his six innings in the 6-3 win over the Colorado Sky Sox. Jay Jackson struck out three in two perfect innings of relief to notch the victory. Brad Snyder went 2-for-3 with a homer, a triple, and three runs scored. Click for full box score.

Andrew Cashner’s stellar performance on Saturday allowed Iowa to earn a 1-0 win despite very little offense. Cashner has pitched very well since his call-up from Tennessee. He struck out seven Sky Sox on Saturday. Brian Schlitter came on and got the two-inning save, allowing just one hit. Click for full box score.

Iowa made a roster move on Saturday placing catcher Welington Castillo on the DL with a hamstring injury. Veteran Mark Johnson was activated to take Castillo’s place on the roster.

The Cubs came out on the right end of an 11-7 slugfest on Sunday afternoon. They extended the winning streak to six thanks mostly to a seven-run fourth inning. James Adduci picked up three hits and four RBI. Jason Dubois didn’t get a chance to swing the stick, but he showed his patience by drawing walks in all four at bats. Dubois scored three times. Justin Berg was shaky in his first outing since being sent down to AAA, allowing a two-run homer in his inning of relief. Click for full box score.

Iowa Cubs Player of the Week: Andrew Cashner
Andrew is one of those guys who steps his game up when the competition steps up. He went 3-1 with a 2.75 ERA at AA to earn the jump to Iowa, where he’s 3-0 with a minute ERA of 0.95. He’s allowed a total of only two earned runs in his three starts. His dominance against Colorado on Friday earned him Player of the Week honors.

Upcoming Games and Probable Pitchers:
*All Times CDT
Today VS Salt Lake 6:35 (Thomas Diamond)
Tuesday VS Salt Lake 12:05 (Casey Coleman)
Wednesday VS Salt Lake 6:35 (Mitch Atkins)

AA-Tennessee Smokies – (26-18)
While the I-Cubs were basking in the glory of their winning streak, the Smokies have dropped four of their last six. Tennessee still leads the Southern League in team batting average (.288) and runs scored (244). Their potent offense has been the reason for their success this year.

They dropped Friday’s game by a score of 7-0. The Smokies usually sound offense could not muster up much, as they got just two hits. A five-run fourth for the Jacksonville Suns was the demise of Tennessee starter Craig Muschko. The other four innings he worked were solid. Click for full box score.

The Smokies got back in the win column on Saturday when they knocked off the Suns 10-8. Chris Carpenter did allow seven hits, but only two earned runs in five innings. Ryan Buchter was charged with four earned runs in just 0.1 innings. Robinson Chirinos went 4-for-4 and is hitting .347. With Welington Castillo on the DL a promotion for Chrinios was on option, but the Cubs decided to keep him at Double-A. Ty Wright went 2-for-3 with a homer and drove in four. Click for full box score.

Three first inning runs against Hung-Wen Chen were all the Suns needed on Sunday as they cruised to a 4-1 victory. Chen settled down after the first and did not allow a run for the rest of his six-inning start. Tony Campana and Steve Clevenger each picked up two hits. Campana is a much underrated prospect and is hitting .360 for Bill Dancy’s crew. Click for full box score.

Tennessee Smokies Player of the Week: Tony Campana
Campana, who was the Cubs 13th round pick in 2008, ranks first among active Smokies with 100 or more at bats in batting average. Campana picked up three multi-hit games last week including a 4-for-4 game with three doubles, a single, and walk on May 20. Tony has a seven game hit streak going and has reached base in each of his last 12 games. Campana could find himself joining the veteran I-Cub outfield (Snyder, Dubois, Fuld, and Adduci) before the end of the year or in 2011 at the latest.

Upcoming Games:
*All Times CDT
Today VS Jacksonville 6:15
Wednesday @ Montgomery 7:05

Class-A Daytona Cubs – (19-25)
The Class-A Advanced Daytona ballclub has gotten its act together. The D-Cubs won five of their last six contests. The Florida State League has been pitching dominated this season, but the Cubs offense has been among the worst in the league. They have nobody outside of Brett Jackson who has hit the ball well with consistency this year. They’ve finally started to score some runs (seven twice and nine once during their hot streak), but let’s hope the bats continue to heat up as the weather does in Florida.

The D-Cubs lost to the Ft. Myers Miracle 7-0 on Friday. Rebel Ridling went 2-for-4 with a double to lead the Daytona bats. They only had two hits. Dae-Eun Rhee was knocked out in the seventh inning after allowing five early runs. Chris Siegfried went two scoreless innings in relief. Click for full box score.

Rafael Dolis, the Daytona ace, picked up the W with a great start on Saturday. Daytona won 6-1 behind Rafael’s 5.1 innings of scoreless baseball. Aaron Shafer struck out four in his 2.2 innings of shutout relief. Jake Opitz went 3-for-4 with an RBI. Brett Jackson doubled twice as the DH. Click for full box score.

A four-run sixth propelled Daytona to their second straight win on Sunday. D.J. LeMahieu had one of his biggest games of the season going 4-for-4 with two RBI and a walk. Opitz stayed hot with four hits and two runs driven in. Junior Lake went 2-for-4 with a pair of RBI. Click for full box score.

Daytona Cubs Player of the Week: Jake Opitz
Opitz had a terrific weekend (7-for-9 against Fort Myers) to earn him our Player of the Week award. Opitz plays primarily third base. His bat was quiet (.220 AVG in 23 games) at Double-A, but he quickly improved once he was sent to Daytona. Jake is hitting .311 with seven RBI in 12 FSL games. He was drafted by the Cubs in the 12th round in ’08.

Upcoming Games
*All Times CDT
Today @Brevard County 6:05
Tuesday VS Brevard County 6:05
Wednesday @ Brevard County 6:05

Class-A Peoria Chiefs – (25-19)
The Chiefs have been consistent with their play this year. They haven’t dominated the opponents, but they’ve played sound baseball and avoided long skids, which have led to their winning record.

On Thursday night, the Chiefs won a wild 15-inning affair with Wisconsin. Each team scored a run in the twelfth to keep it going. Peoria scored four in the top of the 15th to put the game away. Nelson Perez had three hits and four RBI. Trey McNutt was the first of the seven Peoria hurlers. He surrendered just one unearned run in 4.2 innings. Click for full box score.

The Quad Cities River Bandits had their way with the Chiefs pitching staff on Friday. They scored 13 runs on 17 hits to win 13-1. Ryan Searle gave up seven earned runs in four innings. Su-Min Jung was also hammered. Click for full box score.

Saturday the River Bandits made it two in a row with a 4-3 win. Greg Rohan went 3-for-4 with three RBI. He’s been an essential part of the middle of the Peoria order all year. Richard Jones went 3-for-4. Click for full box score.

The brief losing streak was history after Sunday’s 6-5 win. Nelson Perez and Justin Bour each had three RBI, while D.J. Fitzgerald picked up three more hits. Rob Whitenack gave up three earned runs in six innings. His ERA is still a beefy 7.13. Click for full box score.

Peoria Chiefs Player of the Week: Nelson Perez
Perez, who spent his offseason playing in the Dominican Winter League, was really scuffling at Daytona. However, since rejoining Peoria, he has picked it up. He’s hitting .394 in eight games. He had two three-hit games in the week. Perez has driven in 14 runs in just eight Midwest League games.

Upcoming Games:
*All Times CDT
Today @Quad Cities 11am
Tuesday VS Cedar Rapids 6:30
Wednesday VS Cedar Rapids 6:30

You can send questions and comments to [email protected]. You can follow me on Twitter at for more minor league news and reports. Also, please check out my Cubs blog at

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Quote of the Day

"Don’t ever permit the pressure to exceed the pleasure." - Joe Maddon
  • Neil

    Hey everyone …

    I am changing the comment system on the CCO. I will have a post up soon.

  • erniesarmy

    Great, leave them there until Hendry, Piniella, and Rothschild are gone.

    Then bring them up with a chance to work with competent baseball people.

  • Jeff in AZ

    Seems easy enough.