Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 12/08/13

With the winter season progressing into the second half, the Cubs winter league rosters have expanded. Outfielder Darnell McDonald has joined the Mexican Pacific League, while IF/OF Greg Rohan is now part of the Roberto Clemente League. In addition, pitcher Ryan Searle made his winter debut. To see how the fresh faces, as well as the remainder of the roster, performed last week, take a look inside today’s report.

Note: Coverage of the winter leagues is by calendar week, Sunday through Saturday

Dominican Winter League

Aguilas Cibaenas

It was a laugher for Cibaenas on Wednesday as they beat Estrellas 14-3. Frank Batista pitched a scoreless inning of mop-up work in the eighth.

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Toros del Este

Alberto Cabrera was unable to hold the lead on Monday as Este lost 5-3 to Cibaenas. Cabrera entered in the seventh inning and allowed the tying run (earned) on three hits while striking out a batter.

Tigres del Licey

Julio Borbon was used as a pinch runner on Sunday as Licey lost 1-0 to Escogido.

Estrellas de Oriente

Oriente used a six-run fourth inning to put away Escogido 7-5 on Monday. Junior Lake went 0-for-4 while Marcos Mateo struck out the side for his eighth save.

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The Eastern Stars fell short of their comeback bid on Tuesday and lost 4-3 to Cibaenas. Junior Lake went 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI in the loss.

The Stars were taken to the woodshed on Wednesday with a 14-3 defeat at the hands of Cibaenas. Junior Lake played left field and was 1-for-4 with a triple, an RBI, and a run scored.

It was a little closer game for Oriente on Thursday, but they still lost 4-3 to Este. Junior Lake went 1-for-4 in the game.

The losing skid for the Eastern Stars reached four games on Friday as they lost 3-2 to Licey. Junior Lake was 0-for-3 with a walk.

Mexican Pacific League

Venados de Mazatlan

A late run was all that Mazatlan could muster on Tuesday, as they lost 4-1 to Navojoa. Walter Ibarra went 1-for-3 with a walk.

Venados took it on the chin on Wednesday as they lost 11-3 to Navojoa. Walter Ibarra continued to show improvement at the plate as he was 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored.

The Stags dropped their third straight game on Thursday 5-1 to Navojoa. Walter Ibarra remained steady and went 1-for-3 with a double and an RBI.

Mazatlan was finally able to turn some offensive production from Walter Ibarra into a positive result. Mazatlan shut out Hermosillo 4-0 on Friday. Ibarra drove in two as he was 1-for-4 with a double.

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Walter Ibarra extended his hitting streak to five games on Saturday as he went 1-for-4 in a 3-1 loss to Hermosillo.

Yaquis de Obregon

Obregon had a new face in the line-up on Wednesday as they defeated Guasave 4-2. Iowa outfielder Darnell McDonald joined the club and went 0-for-4 with a run scored in his debut.

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The Yaquis showed how dangerous they can be in the second half of the season as they topped Guasave for the second straight night with a 6-3 victory. Darnell McDonald collected his first hit and went 1-for-4 in the win.

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The Tribe got on a little roll with a 2-1 victory over Navojoa on Friday. Darnell McDonald is still trying to get his feet under him as he went 0-for-3 in the game.

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The struggles for Darnell McDonald continued on Saturday as Obregon lost 4-3 to Navojoa. McDonald went 0-for-3 with a walk and an RBI in the loss.

Roberto Clemente Professional Baseball League

Cangrejeros de Santurce

Santurce scored in bunches on Monday as they defeated Carolina 7-3. Edwin Maysonet went 1-for-4 with a walk in the win.

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The Cangrejeros were buried by an offensive outburst from Ponce and lost 9-3 on Tuesday. Edwin Maysonet was 0-for-4.

The Crabmen were able to put up a nine-spot of their own on Wednesday as they defeated Mayaguez 9-2. Edwin Maysonet was 2-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored in the victory.

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It was a mixed bag on Thursday night as Edwin Maysonet went 0-for-4 but Santurce won 4-3 over Caguas.

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The Cangrejeros came out on the short end of a 1-0 loss to Ponce on Saturday. Edwin Maysonet was 0-for-4 in the game.

Leones de Ponce

Ponce got their bats out on Tuesday and thumped Santurce 9-3. Jonathan Mota went 1-for-4 with a run scored in the victory.

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The Lions must have used up all of their runs the previous night because they were shut out 6-0 by Cauguas on Wednesday. Rubi Silva led off, played centerfield and went 0-for-4 while Jonathan Mota was 1-for-3.

The Pride saved all of their offense for the ninth inning. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough as they lost 2-1 to Santurce on Friday. Rubi Silva was 1-for-4 while newly added Iowa IF/OF Greg Rohan went 0-for-4 while playing third base. Jonathan Mota lined up at shortstop and went 1-for-3.

Ponce prevailed 1-0 in a tight game against Santurce on Saturday. Jonathan Mota returned to third base and was 1-for-3 in the victory.

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Venezuelan Winter League

Caribes de Anzoategui

It was a see-saw affair on Wednesday with Anzoategui coming out on top 6-4 over Aragua. Paolo Espino started, pitched six innings and allowed two runs (one earned) on three hits and a walk while striking out five batters.

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Leones de Caracas

It wasn’t pretty for Hector Rondon in Caracas’ 5-3 win over Zulia in 11 innings on Thursday. Rondon allowed the Eagles to take the lead in the seventh inning by giving up two earned runs on three hits while striking out a batter.

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Bravos de Margarita

Frank Del Valle put together another quality start on Saturday but received no support as Margarita lost 4-2 to Zulia. Del Valle allowed an earned run on two hits and four walks with three strikeouts in five innings and lowered his season ERA to 2.17.

Cardenales de Lara

Lara fell behind early last Sunday and was quickly buried in an 11-4 loss to Aragua. Luis Valbuena was 2-for-4 with a walk and an RBI.

The Cardinals played a doubleheader on Thursday to complete a rainout in late November and they prevailed in the opener 5-2 over Margarita. Luis Valbuena went 1-for-4 in the victory.

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Game two saw the Redbirds complete the sweep as the drubbed Margarita 10-5. Luis Valbuena was a big part of the action and went 2-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored.

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Lara made it three wins in a row on Friday as they defeated Margarita 7-2. Luis Valbuena had a big night and went 3-for-3 with a walk and two runs scored.

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Luis Valbuena followed up his big Friday with another excellent performance on Saturday as the Cardinals blew past Caracas 11-4. Valbuena was 2-for-3 with a walk, two RBI, and three runs scored … and he hit his third home run of the winter.

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Australian Baseball League

Brisbane Bandits

Friday saw the season debut of Daytona pitcher Ryan Searle as Brisbane shut out Perth 3-0. Searle was sharp in his first appearance. Searle started and pitched five scoreless innings while scattering four hits and striking out six batters.

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Quote of the Day

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  • Neil

    Tom, thanks for another excellent update.

    • Tom U

      Thank you Neil!

  • Neil

    Just so everyone knows, Tom’s Monday report will return to Monday next week. Just posted a little early with the Winter Meetings starting in the morning.

  • Tom U

    In response to CubbyDenCritic, I reviewed the scouting reports on Aaron Sanchez and Marcus Stroman as they relate to pitchers the Cubs are currently developing.

    At this point, I would rate Sanchez behind pitchers CJ Edwards and Pierce Johnson, and perhaps wild card Arodys Vizcaino (I don’t like to rate players that haven’t played). Sanchez would upgrade the near ready pitching talent (Raley, Loux, Ramirez), but may not have the potential of pitchers such as Zastrysny, Skulina, Paniagua, Maples, Pugliese, and Blackburn.

    Stroman is a smaller version of Kyle Hendricks, so I would rate Stroman behind him. I ‘m also not sure that Stroman would be better than the acquired Ivan Pineyro or Corey Black, as well as holdovers Eric Jokisch and Matt Loosen.

    In short, Sanchez and Stroman would make the pitching depth stronger, but they are not so good that they would go to the head of the class.

    • Tony_Hall

      Jason Parks just posted a comparison of the two. Subscription recquired to read full article.

    • CubbyDenCritic

      Thanks Tom….it gives us fans a gauge of how good these pitchers our to our prospects…….sounds like Sanchez & Stroman are #4 type of starters……I sure like to get a #2 type of pitcher for Samardzija.

  • Henry

    Tom, excellent report as usual. You mentioned in one of your comments that Junior Lake played Left Field, is he playing other positions as well or is he being used exclusively as a left fielder?

    • Tom U

      Lake has lined up in left, center, and right, but mainly center.