Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 05/01/14

The inclement weather that is effecting the entire country took its toll on the Cubs minor league teams this week, as Iowa lost two games due to the weather while Kane County had one of theirs postponed.

PrintIn the games that were played, both Iowa and Kane County maintained their first place leads due to the hot hitting of Jacob Hannemann and Lars Anderson. Daytona struggled to find consistency in three losses, while Tennessee beat a Cy Young winner thanks to Dustin Geiger and John Andreoli.

For all the highlights, have a look at today’s Down on the Farm.

Editor’s Note: Monday’s report covers games from Thursday to Sunday. Thursday’s report covers games Monday through Wednesday.

Low Class-A – Kane County Cougars (18-7)

Inclement weather deprived Kane County of one of their patented comebacks on Monday as the Cougars lost 1-0 to Cedar Rapids in six innings. Paul Blackburn pitched well enough to win. Blackburn struck out four batters while allowing an earned run in five innings. Justin Amlung had a strikeout and held the Kernels scoreless for an inning. Yasiel Balaguert (1-for-3), Jordan Hankins (1-for-2) and Trey Martin (1-for-2) were the only Cougars that collected hits.

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It was another tight game on Tuesday but this time Kane County came out on top as the Cougars beat Cedar Rapids 2-1. Tyler Skulina put together one of his best outings of the year. Skulina allowed an earned run and struck out two batters in five innings. Nathan Dorris continued to be a rock in middle relief. Dorris picked up his third victory as he struck out two in two scoreless innings. Manager Mark Johnson reached for Zack Godley early and the closer responded by recording five strikeouts in the last two innings to earn his fifth save.

Despite getting 11 hits, the Cougars did not score until the sixth inning. Jacob Hannemann (3-for-4 with a double, a triple and a RBI) led off with a triple and scored on a ground out. Kane County edged ahead in the seventh after Danny Lockhart (0-for-3) led off with a walk. A ground out and a single by Trey Martin (1-for-3 with a stolen base) moved Lockhart to third. Hannemann singled in Lockhart with the Cougars’ second run.

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High Class–A – Daytona Cubs (9-17)

It was swing-from-the-heels night on Monday in Lakeland but Daytona came out on the short end of an 11-10 game. The D-Cubs took the lead in the first inning after Albert Almora (2-for-5) reached with a two out single and was doubled home by Bijan Rademacher (3-for-5 with a double and a RBI). Down 5-1 in the third, Almora and Rademacher started the rally again with one out singles. Dan Vogelbach (1-for-4) loaded the bases with hit of his own. One out later, Jeimer Candelario (2-for-4 with a double, a home run and six RBI) delivered a Grand Slam to draw Daytona even. The D-Cubs would take the lead after Rock Shoulders (1-for-3 with a double) doubled and scored on a single by Marco Hernandez (2-for-5 with two RBI). But that lead was short-lived as Daytona found themselves behind 11-6 in the sixth inning when Shoulders led off with a walk. A force-out put Hernandez on at first, and a groundout advanced him to second. Gioskar Amaya (1-for-5 with a RBI) singled in Hernandez. In the seventh, Rademacher laid down a bunt single and walks to Vogelbach and Chadd Krist (0-for-3) loaded the bases. Candelario doubled in Rademacher and Vogelbach. Krist scored on a groundout. It wasn’t a red-letter day for starter Rob Zastryzny as he allowed eight earned runs and struck out four in four innings. Steve Perakslis fanned the flames by giving up three earned runs while striking out three batters. Arodys Vizcaino and Andrew McKirahan each tossed a scoreless inning.

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It was a miserable night for the offense on Tuesday as Daytona was two-hit by Lakeland and lost 7-0. Only Dan Vogelbach (1-for-3) and Marco Hernandez (1-for-3) were able to solve the Flying Tigers’ pitching staff. Nobody on the D-Cubs’ pitching staff fared well as starter Ben Wells lasted only two innings and allowed three earned runs while striking out three batters. Starling Peralta tossed the middle three innings and recorded two strikeouts while giving up three runs. Zach Cates went the rest of the way as he struck out three and let in an earned run in three innings.

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The nightmare that is the current road trip for Daytona continued on Wednesday morning as they were pummeled by Lakeland 11-2. Yao-Lin Wang was on the hill for the D-Cubs, who didn’t seem prepared. Daytona committed three errors that led to three unearned runs. Wang tossed five innings and allowed nine runs (six earned) while striking out three batters. Andrew McKirahan followed and recorded a strikeout, but gave up an earned run in two innings. Austin Reed pitched the last inning and surrendered an earned run with two strikeouts. Daytona scored two consolation runs in the top of the ninth after Pin-Chieh Chen (1-for-2) singled, took second on defensive indifference, and scored on a double by Dan Vogelbach (3-for-4 with a double and a RBI). Jeimer Candelario (1-for-3) followed with a single and a base hit from Rock Shoulders (1-for-4 with a RBI) plated Vogelbach.

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Double-A – Tennessee Smokies (13-13)

There was a strong feeling of déjà vu when Tennessee trailed 1-0 after five innings. But the Smokies rallied and the pitching held as Tennessee defeated Huntsville 4-1 on Monday. All the runs for Tennessee scored in the sixth inning after Charles Cutler (1-for-5) was hit by a pitch to lead things off. John Andreoli (2-for-3) followed with a single, and both Cutler and Andreoli scored on a base hit by Zeke DeVoss (1-for-4) and an error. A double from Kris Bryant (1-for-4 with a double and a RBI) plated DeVoss, but Bryant would be wiped out on a fielder’s choice that allowed Dustin Geiger (1-for-4) to reach. Rafael Lopez (2-for-3 with a double and a RBI) doubled in Geiger.

Southern League Pitcher-of-the-Week Corey Black had another sterling effort as he struck out five and allowed an earned run in six innings. Beleaguered pitchers Jeffrey Lorick and Tony Zych held the Stars the rest of the way. Lorick pitched two perfect innings and Zych earned his first save with a scoreless ninth.

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For the second time this season the Smokies came out on the right end of a game in which they faced a Major Leaguer on a rehab assignment as Tennessee beat Chattanooga 4-3 on Wednesday. Tennessee faced two-time Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw, and the Smokies were able to plate a couple of runs off the Dodgers’ lefty. John Andreoli (2-for-4 with a double, a triple and two stolen bases) led off the game with a walk. Andreoli stole both second and third base. Two outs later, Dustin Geiger (2-for-2 with a double and two RBI) doubled in Andreoli. It was the top of the order again in the fifth inning as Andreoli doubled and Jae-Hoon Ha (2-for-4 with a double and a RBI) singled. Geiger ripped a base hit that plated Andreoli and tied the game. The Smokies pulled ahead in the seventh after Andreoli tripled and scored on a sacrifice fly. Rafael Lopez (1-for-4 with a home run) added a solo home run to provide the winning margin.

Ivan Pineyro was able to match Kershaw fairly well. Pineyro allowed three earned runs and struck out six in 5.2 innings. Ryan Searle was able to hold the Lookouts for 1.1 innings to pick up the victory. Hunter Cervenka had a strikeout in a perfect inning while Armando Rivero worked around a hit to collect his fifth save.

Dustin Geiger went 2-for-2 with a double, a walk and two RBI against Kershaw. Clayton Kershaw allowed two runs, one earned, on six hits with two walks. Kershaw threw 86 pitches, 57 strikes, over five innings.

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Triple-A – Iowa Cubs (14-9)

After taking the lead in the bottom of the first on Monday, Iowa never looked back as they defeated Omaha 6-3. Singles by Chris Coghlan (2-for-3 with a stolen base) and Arismendy Alcantara (1-for-4 with a stolen base) set the table for Javier Baez (1-for-3 with a home run and three RBI), who belted his third home run of the season. The I-Cubs added single runs in the fourth, fifth, and seventh innings. Lars Anderson (2-for-3 with a double, a home run, two RBI) added to the total in the fourth with a solo home run. It was Anderson again in the fifth as he doubled in Christian Villanueva (1-for-4). Logan Watkins (0-for-4 with a stolen base) reached on an error, stole second base, moved to third on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Luis Flores (2-for-4 with a double and a RBI).

Eric Jokisch posted his fourth quality start of the season. Jokisch allowed two earned runs and struck out eight batters in 6.1 innings. Alberto Cabrera gave up an earned run in 1.2 innings, while Blake Parker struck out the side in the ninth for his third save.

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News and Notes

The Iowa Cubs activated INF Edgar Gonzalez from the 7-day disabled list.

The Tennessee Smokies placed RHP C.J. Edwards on the 7-day disabled list retroactive to April 25. LHP Austin Kirk was activated from the 7-day DL.

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Quote of the Day

"Every day is a new opportunity. You can build on yesterday’s success or put its failures behind and start over again." – Bob Feller

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  • Eugene Debs

    Jacob Hannemann is an interesting prospect.

    • Theboardrider

      I like him a lot. He’s missed some time due to missionary work too. In my experience kids out of BYU always have a good head on their shoulders. Mormons work hard and stay on the straight and narrow. No reason not to expect Hanneman to improve and improve.

  • mutantbeast

    Seems the Smokies hit Kershaw harder than ,most big league teams do.

    • Theboardrider

      Weird how that happens. Then Kershaw will show up in LA and shut his first opponent down. I think sometimes big league pitchers just can’t bring themselves to go all out in AA or AAA ball.

    • John_CC

      Its good to see and great for the kids in Tennessee who hit him hard. But it is a tune up start for Kershaw, I’m sure he isn’t approaching the Smokies with the same game plan and intensity as an ML team. But again, great for the guys that hit him, can’t imagine how good it must feel for them.

  • Theboardrider

    Baez hits his 3rd HR, that’s a good sign. I’d sure like to see he, Arismendy and Kris all in Cubs uniforms this summer. We’ll see…

  • BigJonLilJon

    Also good to see Corey Black doing well in AA ball. May be ready sooner than later.

    • Tom U

      John, that always depends on injuries, but six to eight weeks is usually a when you see movement.

      • Tom U

        Sorry, hit the wrong reply. That was supposed to be for John CC

  • John_CC

    Andreoli is my new favorite prospect. I’ve like him for a little while, but a double, triple and 2 SBs of Kershaw? Come on! The kid just gets on base. He is already 24 but has moved pretty quickly. Over 83 games at AA he has slashed .290/.373/.400 with 24 SB.

    I hope he’s promoted to Iowa when the first major shift occurs. Brett Jackson appears to be cooked, 17K in 33 AB, he’s hitting .125. I could see him being demoted again. I really want to see some movement in the Cubs OF! How close is Coghan to replacing Sweeney? Not a huge upgrade, but he is better than Sweeney and hitting well in Iowa, .845 OPS vs. Righties. I’m sure they are waiting to hopefully trade Schierholtz but I’d rather see Vitters take his spot as well.

    I don’t know, but Iowa’s OF is pretty weak as well. Tom, when do you think the first round of moves is coming and who will be moving from Tennessee to Iowa?

  • GaryLeeT

    Wada with another insane (albeit rain shortened) outing. How many of these starts will it take before they give him a look? Oh, I forgot, this is a flipping team, not a try to get better team. Sorry Tsuyoshi, you will have to keep wasting those gems in Iowa, until July or August.

    • Denver Mike

      Isn’t he like 32 or 33? You’d think they’d be itching to bring him up as soon as possible just so that they can flip him for something, it’s not like he’s got another 5+ prime years left.

      • Tom U

        Wada turned 33 in February.

        I feel that the Cubs are not going to flip Wada, right away.

        To me, it seems like the plan would be to trade two of their starting rotation with in the next few weeks, and then bring up Wada and Joel Pineda, who is in EXT.

        The Cubs will then see what they get in the early trades, and then may be able to flip at least Wada before the trade deadline.

      • GaryLeeT

        It’s not like he’s a flame thrower. His Moyer like pitching style should allow him hang around for quite a while.