Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 08/09/12

Progress continues to inch along in the Cubs’ system, with the lower minor league teams showing the most improvement. Boise has moved into first place in the second half as leading hitters Gioskar Amaya, Stephen Bruno, and Dan Vogelbach have stabilized the offense. Shortstop Tim Saunders has tightened up the defense in Peoria, to the delight of Michael Jensen and Starling Peralta. New faces Christian Villanueva and Javier Baez have been in the middle of things in Daytona, while Tennessee’s Justin Bour was named Hitter of the Week in the Southern League. Meanwhile, Iowa is now searching for an identity after the promotions of Brett Jackson and Josh Vitters.

With recaps of the Arizona Rookie League and the Dominican Summer League, here is today’s Down on the Farm Report.

Note: Monday’s report will cover games from Wednesday to Saturday. Thursday’s report covers games Sunday through Tuesday.

Short Season-A – Boise Hawks (22-30)
The Big Man made a big impact in extra innings on Sunday as Boise defeated Spokane 10-9 in 11 innings. With two outs in the top of the 11th, Dan Vogelbach (1-for-5) crushed a solo home run to put the Hawks ahead to stay. Vogelbach’s heroic almost overshadowed two other outstanding offensive performances, starting with catcher Lance Rymel’s four RBI, as he was 2-for-4 with two home runs. Izaac Garsez had a breakout game with a 4-for-5 performance that included a RBI. Trey Martin (3-for-4 with a triple) plated two and Marco Hernandez went 3-for-5. Willson Contreras (2-for-5) scored three runs.

Ian Dickson had a good outing, striking out three and allowing three earned runs through five innings. But Hunter Ackerman was pounded for four earned runs in 1.1 innings. Rafael Diplan lasted only 0.2 innings and was tagged for two runs (one earned). Tyler Bremer settled things down with two scoreless innings that included a pair of strikeouts. Coming off of a start four days before, Su-Min Jung also struck out two over 1.1 innings, and Eduardo Orozco recorded the final two outs and picked up his second save.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

Boise needed to crank up their offense again as they outlasted Everett 11-7 on Monday. Three Hawks homered in the game, starting with Steven Bruno (1-for-5, two RBI) going yard for two runs in the fifth inning, The following inning, Carlos Escobar (2-for-3, double, two RBI) went deep with a two-run shot, while Gioskar Amaya (5-for-5) added a solo blast in the seventh inning. Rock Shoulders was 3-for-5 with an RBI, and Trey Martin (1-for-4) drove in two.

Twelfth round draft pick Justin Amlung was given a predetermined two innings to start the game, and allowed two earned runs. Regularly scheduled starter Felix Pena then took the hill, and was touched for four runs (three earned) while striking out five over four innings. Willengton Cruz followed and continued having trouble with his command, giving up an earned run, two hits and three walks in 1.2 innings. Nathan Dorris earned his first save with 1.1 scoreless innings that included three strikeouts.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

After going on a three game roll, the Hawks hit a bump in the road on Tuesday as they lost 6-3 to Everett. Boise took the lead early, as Dan Vogelbach (1-for-3) connected for a solo shot in the second inning. Izaac Garsez (2-for-2) scored on a Gioskar Amaya (2-for-5) triple in the fifth inning. The Hawks added a run in the eighth on a Jeimer Candelario (1-for-3) double and Candelario eventually scored on a Willson Contreras (1-for-4) groundout. Starter James Pugliese seemed to be in control, striking out six and allowing an earned run in four innings. But after Pugliese reached his pitch limit, he was replaced by Michael Heesch. Heesch gave up three earned runs with three strikeouts in two innings. Su-Min Jung allowed two earned runs over the final two innings.

Low Class-A – Peoria Chiefs (52-61)
In a tense match-up on Sunday, Michael Jensen was denied in his attempt to reach double digit wins, losing to Clinton 3-2. Jensen tried to join Nick Struck and Matt Loosen with ten or more wins. Jensen allowed an earned run and struck out four in five innings. Sheldon McDonald struck out three and was able to thwart the Lumber Kings’ attack for two innings. But Austin Reed was tagged for two earned runs in two innings. In his Peoria debut, Tim Saunders was 1-for-4 with a double and a run scored. Yaniel Cabezas was also 1-for-4 with a double and an RBI.

Peoria’s veteran relievers wound up disappointing them again, as the Chiefs lost 8-6 to Clinton on Monday. Starter Zach Cates performed adequately. Cates allowed three earned runs to go along with two strikeouts over 4.2 innings. Pete Levitt did his job and kept the Lumber Kings off the scoreboard for 1.1 innings. But Justin Berg laid yet another egg and gave up three runs (two earned) with three strikeouts in two innings. Jeffry Antigua also disappointed, serving up two home runs in the final inning. Tim Saunders (1-for-5) doubled in three runs and put Peoria ahead in the first inning. Wes Darvill (2-for-4) singled in Saunders and he scored in the sixth inning after double and a Sergio Burruel (2-for-4) single. Darvill also worked a bases loaded walk that brought in another run.

The Chiefs received an outstanding pitching performance but had to sweat things out on Tuesday as they defeated Clinton 5-3. Starling Peralta was perfect through five innings before surrendering a solo home run in the sixth inning. Peralta had an incredible 14 strikeouts in seven innings with only one earned run. Bryce Shafer wobbled a little, giving up two earned runs in 0.2 innings. However, Larry Suarez pitched the final 1.1 innings, shutting down the Lumber Kings and picking up his first save.

Zeke DeVoss awoke from a deep batting slumber and went 4-for-4 with two doubles and a triple. Chadd Krist stayed hot and drove in two runs as part of his 2-for-4 performance. Wes Darvill’s resurgence continued with a 2-for-4 effort.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

High Class-A – Daytona Cubs (51-62)
Tight games were the norm throughout the system on Sunday, as Daytona lost 4-2 to Dunedin. PJ Francescon started and struck out four, but was able to go only two innings. Francescon was hung with two unearned runs after a Javier Baez fielding error. Frank Del Valle was the long man for the day. Del Valle went four innings, struck out five and allowed two earned runs. Ryan Searle tried to keep the D-Cubs in things by tossing two scoreless innings, but the offense failed to come through. Daytona scattered seven hits, with Christian Villanueva (2-for-4) leading the way. John Andreoli and Rebel Ridling were each 1-for-4 and scored a run.

After an off day on Monday, the D-Cubs were back in action on Tuesday as a couple of newcomers led the way to a 6-1 victory over Lakeland. Javier Baez was 0-for-10 following his promotion and broke out in a big way. Baez was 2-for-4 with a double and three RBI. Christian Villanueva was 1-for-3 with a double and two RBI while John Andreoli ran wild. Andreoli went 2-for-3 and stole three bases.

Austin Kirk had his good stuff working for him. Kirk struck out three and allowed an earned run over 5.2 innings. Jeffrey Lorick picked up his fourth hold with 1.1 scoreless innings, while AJ Morris grounded the Flying Tigers for the last two innings.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

Double-A – Tennessee Smokies (55-60)
Despite a home run and a good pitching performance, Tennessee ended up on the short end of 5-4 loss to Jackson on Sunday. Eric Jokisch pitched well enough to win. Jokisch allowed three earned runs and struck out six in five innings. However, the offense and the bullpen weren’t up to the task. Trey McNutt let the Generals take the lead, as he gave up an earned run while striking out three in three innings. Matt Cerda (2-for-4, double) scored on an error to tie things up in the seventh, but Brian Schlitter let in the winning run in the bottom of the ninth. The Smokies scored in the first as Logan Watkins (1-for-5) singled and stole second then came home on a Justin Bour (2-for-3, double) RBI single. Nelson Perez (2-for-4) added to the lead with a solo homer in the second inning. Bour doubled and scored on a wild pitch in the fourth inning.

Tennessee was the second team in the system that had to take one for the organization on Monday night, although this one didn’t turn out as well with the Smokies losing 7-6 to Jackson. Rehabbing pitcher Lendy Castillo was scheduled to pitch two innings and allowed an earned run while striking out two batters. Pushed back from his start, the struggling Dae-Eun Rhee seemed even more out of sorts as he gave up six earned runs in five innings. Tony Zych, who has also struggled, tossed a scoreless inning. Justin Bour continued to be smoking hot. Bour went deep for his 15th home run as part of a 2-for-4 performance that included a double and three RBI. Matt Szczur was 2-for-5 with a double and a stolen base, while a two-run homer by Junior Lake (1-for-3) in the top of the ninth pulled the Smokies to within one run.

It was almost over before things began on Tuesday, as Tennessee lost 10-4 to Jackson. Jacob Brigham was shelled as he only recorded one out before surrendering six earned runs. Kevin Rhoderick was summoned early and had his best performance in some time, holding the Generals scoreless for 1.1 innings. Zach Rosscup was all over the place as he yielded five walks and two hits, netting two earned runs in 2.2 innings. Casey Weathers wasn’t much better. Weathers also allowed two earned runs in an inning before Brian Schlitter could stop the madness. Schlitter tossed 1.1 scoreless innings. Infielder Dustin Harrington mopped up with a shutout inning. Justin Bour remained the biggest offensive threat. Bour went 2-for-3 with an RBI while Nelson Perez was 2-for-4.

Triple-A – Iowa Cubs (44-74)
As Iowa said goodbye to two players on Sunday, the team searched for leadership in a 2-1 loss to Reno. Prior to the game, Brett Jackson and Josh Vitters were called up to the parent club, leading to a temporary talent void. Veteran Casey Coleman tried his best to keep the I-Cubs in it. Coleman struck out eight over six scoreless innings. Jay Jackson was also untouched in an inning of work, but Marcus Hatley let the Aces get on the board with an earned run in the eighth that tied the score. Esmailin Caridad then failed to record an out, as a ball he deflected ended up as an error for Greg Rohan. Jaye Chapman replaced Caridad and gave up a single that plated the go ahead run. Iowa’s lone score came in the seventh inning, as Diory Hernandez (1-for-3) singled home Jeff Frazier (1-for-3).

For a place that the front office said would be for finishing development, Iowa looked more like a Major League taxi squad on Monday as they lost 2-1 to the Reno Aces. Twelve of the fourteen players had Major League experience, and those players averaged nearly 28 years in age.

Frankie De La Cruz got the start and actually did a good job, limiting the league’s highest team batting average to just one earned run while striking out four in five innings. On a rehab assignment, Blake Parker shutdown the Aces for an inning, while Michael Bowden struck out three in two scoreless innings. However, Jairo Asencio let in the winning run in the top of the ninth. One would expect more offense form this veteran group, but Greg Rohan, one of the two players without Major League experience, was the only player to drive in a run. Rohan was 2-for-4 and Blake Lalli went 2-for-3 with a double.

In what has to be one of the “feel good” games of the minors this year. Ty’Relle Harris won his first game as a starting pitcher on Tuesday as the I-Cubs delivered a 7-4 victory over Reno. Harris, whose career was in jeopardy after being involved in a car accident last year, had his longest outing of the season, tossing six innings and striking out five batters while allowing two earned runs. Esmailin Caridad had Harris a little nervous, as he gave up two earned runs, but struck out three in 1.1 innings. Caridad was bailed out by Jaye Chapman. Chapman struck out the only two batters he faced. Jairo Asencio earned his first save by pitching a perfect ninth.

James Adduci provided the run support. Adduci was 1-for-3 with a double and drove in three runs. Dave Sapplet plated two runs and finished the game 2-for-4, while Alfredo Amezaga was 2-for-3 with a triple and two runs scored.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

Arizona Rookie League
At 26-12, the AZL Cubs have the second best record in the rookie league. Unfortunately, division mates AZL Athletics have the best record at 27-11. During the past week, the A-Cubs went 3-2, led by pitchers Ryan McNeil and Logier Padron. McNeil tossed two scoreless innings of relief on Thursday, and another 2.1 innings in a start on Tuesday. McNeil struck out six over the two games. Padron threw the final three innings on Tuesday, and had three strikeouts as he raised his record to 4-0. Anthony Prieto also tossed four scoreless innings during the week, while Paul Blackburn won his second game on Friday with 3.1 scoreless innings in relief of Dillon Maples, who held the opposition scoreless for 1.2 innings.

Jacob Rogers remains a hitting terror as his average dipped slightly to.390 while driving in 16 with 11 doubles, a triple, and two homers. Ben Carhart is close behind, hitting .377 with 17 RBI while catcher Justin Marra is seeing more playing time by batting .375. The “Big 3” outfielders, Shawon Dunston Jr., Albert Almora, and Jorge Soler, are hitting .258, .264, and .260 respectively. Soler now leads the club with eight steals.

Dominican Summer League
Life hasn’t been good for the Cubs-1 team, as their 27-29 record is good for fifth in the Baseball City division. Infielder Jenner Emeterio doesn’t have enough at bats to qualify for the league statistics, but if he had, his .342 average would be good for eighth. First baseman Roney Alcala remained solid at the plate, batting .315 with five home runs while leading the team with 36 RBI. Outfielder Jeffrey Baez is third in the league was 27 stolen bases and raised his average to .302. Right-hander Carlos A. Rodriguez dropped to 11th in the league with 58 strikeouts, and has an ERA of 1.80 to go along with a 0.95 WHIP. Eighteen-year old lefty Angel Mejias has emerged as a number two starter. Mejias is 3-2 with a 2.82 ERA that includes 46 strikeouts and a 1.14 WHIP.

The Cubs-2 team has also suffered, dropping their record to 28-27, fifth in the Boca Chica South division. Infielder Bryant Flete has taken over as the offensive leader, hitting .318 and driving in 12 runs while stealing nine bases. Outfielder Shamil Ubiera leads the team with 32 RBI while batting .309. Fellow outfielder Kelvin Encarnacion is also a big part of the offense, batting .303 with five home runs, 26 RBI, and 12 stolen bases. Right-hander Daury Torres remains one of the top pitchers in the league, as he is third in both ERA and WHIP respectively at 1.25 and 0.77, along with a 5-2 record and 48 strikeouts. Nineteen-year old righty Pedro Araujo has come through as a number two starter by going 5-0 with a 2.54 ERA and 40 strikeouts in 46 innings. Alexander Santana remains a workhorse, as the 18-year old has tossed 51.1 innings with a 1-3 record and ERA of 2.98, with 45 strikeouts and a 1.09 WHIP.

News and Notes
The Chicago Cubs recalled LHP Brooks Raley, OF Brett Jackson and IF Josh Vitters from the Iowa Cubs; assigned OF Tony Campana to the Iowa Cubs.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Quote of the Day

"The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why." - Mark Twain
Share on Fancred
  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    The Indians just released pitcher Jason Knapp. He was a centerpiece of the Cliff Lee trade a few years back but has battled injuries. He’s only 21 years-old. Maybe the Cubs take a chance on him? It follows the low risk-high reward model Team
    Theo likes…

    • redlarczykg

      What logic is behind the Cubs signing a 30 year old Jeffrey Frazier to AAA to play 1st base, who has no future and keep Justin Bour at AA, when Justin has clearly earned a promotion?
      Bour – .306 – 15 HR – 31 2B- 96 RBI.

    • cubtex

      Knapp has had not 1 but 2 shoulder surgeries. There is a reason why the Indians released him.

    • mutantbeast

      Saw Knapp pitch in Arizona last spring. He has Kerry-Wood type stuff, but he also has Kerrys bad mechanics. Kid will always be injury-prone until he learns to stop being an arm pitcher and start using his lower body.

  • J Daniel

    What are the next steps of this rebuild? Continue on for a year or two of buy low sell high cheap free agents until young are ready? If they are ever ready? Heck, we hope that Almora and Soler are a future 2/3’s of the outfield but who knows. Maybe they both will fast track here and be starts or possibly be busts?

    Do they start to target free agents that will be part of the long term plan? Obviously, something has to be done to make some progress next year, doesn’t it?

    • cubtex

      Right! This offseason will be interesting to see if they want to get better next year. If they don’t add any better players(especially on the pitching staff) things will be worse next year. If you think this year was tough to stomach……the famous Cubs saying……….wait till next year!

      • paulcatanese

        Well, they could add another chapter to their book,
        “The Cubs Way”, maybe all pictures so to be more easily understood:)

        • cubtex

          lmao

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        There really arent “better” players to add in this upcoming free agent class, especially pitching wise. Next year will probably see Shark, Wood, Garza(if hes not traded), eventually Vizcaino, and probably a rotation of arms from the farm. Most likely our younger ones like Rusin Raley etc, to see where we are at with them. This year was a cleansing of our big league team and an evaluation year for our farm. Unfortunately we did not have much pitching in the top half of our farm to help contribute to the big league team. Which has lead to the adding of scrap heap guys in AAA to come up and pitch from time to time in the bigs. If we continue to build our farm it will open us up to trading for better players. This i believe will be how we acquire pitching and other impact type players to fill out our roster, over the next couple years. We now have an abundance of 1b OF and SS/3b players in our system who could be parts of trades.

        Next year will probably be worse because it will be a year of younger players making adjustments to the bigs. Our offense will see many ups and downs and our 4/5 spots in the rotation will be a revolving door unless a few of the guys like Rusin, Raley, Jokisch, Kirk, Struck, and Loosen show they can play at the mlb level.

        We have to understand, the plan is to build the farm, to bring waves and waves of pitching through. We had no such waves coming up with what was left behind by the previous regime. This was a year to cleanse and begin the build. Next year it will be more of a fresh start with younger players and seeing what can stick.

        Im not sure who u propose we add through free agency next year, but to add expensive FAs just for the sake of it makes no sense. Unless they are of the under 30 variety and can be signed for 6 years + and can be a centerpiece of the team in 2014-15 and beyond, there isnt much that makes sense just quite yet.

        • cubtex

          Do you believe Mike that you can rebuild and also be competitive? Those are are philosophical differences. Chicago is not a small market team. Look what the A’s are doing this year. Look at what the Pirates are doing.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            I guess the difference is i dont care to just be competitive. I actually HATE that word. i dont want a team that can be a wild card contender, or maybe win a division many here thought was super weak and ripe for the taking had we just made a few additions this year. I want to be a perennial division winner, a team that is always in the NLCS and regarded as a contender to win the WS .

            The A’s have been building their farm system up for years and because they do that were able to trade their closer for Reddick, move Gio and Cahill for guys that were basically MLB ready and are contributing to their team now. Its not because they spent a ton on FAs, And if you want to point to Cespedes, the cubs were in on him so your point is for naught. If anything what the As are doing is all the more reason for you to just sit back and be patient with what Theo is attempting here. The pirates are also another team that has drafted, and made trades. Its only because they usually trade away their talent that they got McDonald, AJ was not expected to do this well. McCutcheon is a home grown stud, along with most of the rest of that offense. So again, have patience. Neither of ur examples spent wildly in FA to help them contend while rebuilding.

          • cubtex

            Sorry. I will take a wild card team any year and every year. Anything can happen in the playoffs. The Braves were perennial division champs for 12 years and won 1 WS. The Cards squeaked in last year and won a WS. You are only a college kid. You do not know what it is like for fans like Paul, Rip or myself to be patient for 40 plus years.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            im 33 years old u can kiss my ass, ive been a cubs fan since i was 3.

          • paulcatanese

            Sounds good Mike, I like mine medium rare right off the grill.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            thats at cubtex, not you

          • cubtex

            Ha. I am more of a medium well guy!

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            Please watch the language … thank you.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            btw, the cards are always a threat to win the series, just cause they had a down year in the beginning and squeaked in last year, doesnt take away from the fact they are ALWAYS one of the WS favorites.

          • mutantbeast

            Tex, the Pirates have been losing for 2 decades-theyve had tons of top draft picks, and Huntington is only now starting to show results. The As play in a masoleum, with a huge amount of foul ground that makes it tough to generate consistent offense, and also makes there pitching(Barry Zito, anyone?) look better than what they are. Cubs biggest problem has been poor ownership and too small a front office. TheoJed at least are doing the best job organizing the FO since Dallas Green and Gordie Goldsberry in the 80s.

        • paulcatanese

          Mike, I dont think anyone in their wildest dreams think that the Cubs would sign expensive free agents, that is beyond any plans period. If they don’t come cheap, the Cubs wont sign them.
          Not only are the Cubs stockpiling indifferent types of players, they are socking money away for a rainy day.
          They are bringing in waves and waves of players, but to say any would have an impact is just wishful thinking.
          The idea of bringing in people to trade upward is not feasable, if they were rated to bring back an upgrade, they wouldnt get them in the first place.
          What the Cubs are counting on is bringing in guys that somehow have a miracle comeback and then trade them, just dosent work that way, too many variables to take place to get it done.
          What we have here is a FO that has come in to install their way or the highway.

          • Zonk

            I agree, they will spend only on DeJesus/Maholm types to keep the team somewhat competitive, but not saddle the club with long-term commitments to over-30 players.

            I guarantee, at some point, we will spend like drunken sailors. Just not now. Think about all the dead payroll this year:

            Zambrano: $16.3 mil (our share)
            Marmol: $7 mil
            Byrd: $6.1 mil
            DeWitt: $1.1 mil
            Volstad: $2.6 mil
            Wells: $2.9 mil

            ……that’s $36 mil for -2.3 WAR! In other words, a complete waste.

            Soto and Soriano at least had positive WAR, though $22 mil for 1.5 WAR is a bit steep!

            We have to dump this dreck to move forward. Only $27 mil next year and $18 the year after remains of this (Marmol and Soriano)

          • paulcatanese

            That is true, money down the tubes. I would hope though that Marmol can turn it around,(doubt it) and Soriono can keep it up.

          • mutantbeast

            Truth be told-Id keep Sorry around till next summer. Lot less $ to eat and Sorry has always produced power numbers.

    • Zonk

      I would expect the only FA signings are more low-risk veteran types, like Maholm or DeJesus. The Cubs could not have foreseen that they could flip Maholm later for a prospect, but Maholm outpitched his contract, so we won. Including that club option was a stroke of genius that paid off.
      I would look for us to add a veteran starter in the $4 mil to $8 per year range on a 1-2 year deal. As it stands now, I would also look for us to add a Veteran 4th OF type, and a veteran infielder (who can play if Vitters fails). I would expect us to sign a number of bullpen arms cheap, on the theory that we’ll throw some against the wall, and a couple might stick (the “Shawn Camp” method).

      • cubtex

        yep. another long year! I agree they will not do much

        • Zonk

          No….but I think that’s the right approach, for now.

          After 2013, we will be clear of Marmol’s contract, and in the last year of Soriano’s. Our best talent is in A/A+, and they should be more advanced, and include high draft picks from next June’s draft. We should have a better base of young talent, and more money to spend. THEN will be the time to start spending it, to ramp-up to contention in 2015 or 2016, when the new TV contract will put more money in the coffers.

          But so far, Theo and Co. have made NO long-term contract commitments. They had to burn-off the excess from the Hendry regime first

          • cubtex

            Yes…but we are not the Oakland A’s. What is with this pinching pennys talk all the time.

  • Tom U

    I’m still working on the numbers, but seems as if Javier Baez did not have the impact on the Peoria Chiefs that some think.

    Despite the hoopla, the Chiefs were 22-27 before Baez arrived, and 29-30 during his stay. Both Zeke DeVoss and Wes Darvill saw a downturn in their averages, but are hitting .277 and .333 respectively since his departure. Another curious item is that Michael Jensen, Starling Peralta, and Yao-Lin Wang have all had one of their best pitching performances of the season after Baez left for Daytona.

    It will take some time, but I’ll look into team ERA before, during, and since the Baez era.

    • paulcatanese

      Clubhouse presence? It appears it got better after the move of Baez. His defense? and I dont mean just errors, but range, hustle? All are unknown factors here but could very well have had an impact.
      Once a player who may be totaly involved with himself and not the team(and I am not saying that, no facts to support the theory) leaves things seem to change for the better, why?
      It is curious, but very difficult to pinpoint Tom.

  • cubtex

    Again….No Vitters in the lineup against a mediocre RHP! Ridiculous!

  • redlarczykg

    Tom,
    Great report as usual.
    What kind of stuff does Yao-Lin Wang throw at Peoria?
    He’s got 12 Saves an ERA of 2.98 and an eye popping 63 SO to 18 BB and opposing batters at .218.
    Is he a potential sleeper in the Cubs system as a starter?
    His last outing he had 10 SO in 6 in and no walks!
    He’s only started 5 times this year. With the Cubs very short in good starting pitching in their farm system, lets see what he can do as a starter now.

  • Tom U

    redlarczykg, I previewed Wang as one of my players to watch this past winter

    http://chicagocubsonline.com/archives/2012/02/cubsminors22712.php

    With a surplus of starting pitching in the lower minors, Wang was one of several pitchers converted to relief early this season. It easy to see why, as Wang had one of the two things you look for in a reliever, either a high end fastball or a devastating breaking pitch. Wang has a 12-6 curveball that, when he is throwing it for strikes, is simply unfair to Single-A hitters. However, because a curve like that needs consistent work, he was wobbly at times as a closer. When a need for starting pitching arose, Wang was moved back into the rotation.

    At worst, I see Wang as a right-handed Sean Marshall, capable of messing up hitters one time through the order. At best, Wang is the type of starter you would like to sandwich between a couple of hard throwers, throwing off the timing of opposing batters.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Jorge Soler joins the
    Chiefs today in a roster move. Soler will join the Chiefs
    in Burlington for tonight’s game.

  • Zonk

    That is an aggressive promotion, rather than starting him out at Boise….but Soler is 20, and Cubs must feel he has sufficiently advanced skills to skip A-.

  • Tony_Hall

    That is so cool! I plan to go to see the Chiefs play in Beloit as many times as I can. They visit there starting Saturday, and then again in another week or so.

  • mutantbeast

    Looks like Shawon Dunston Jr was correct when he did his Macho Man Randy Savage type take when discussing Vogel-BOOMS power. VogelBOOM is ripping the ball at Boise-whats there record in the 2nd half? 10-1 or something similair?