The Cubs’ affiliates have a new first place team as the Eugene Emeralds took the top spot thanks to the hot hitting of Donnie Dewees and Matt Rose. South Bend remained in first place due to excellent pitching from Tommy Thorpe and Corbin Hoffner.
Short Season Class-A – Eugene Emeralds (7-6)
Eugene evened their record in a Monday afternoon game, beating Tri-City 5-4. There were more new faces for the Emeralds as Adbert Alzolay started and struck out four in two scoreless innings. In his first professional appearance, Ryan Kellogg had two strikeouts in a perfect inning. Greyfer Eregua relieved and allowed two earned runs while striking out four in 3.2 innings. Another new face, 21st round pick Jared Cheek gave up an earned run and had two strikeouts in an inning. Alex Santana had trouble closing out the game, surrendering an earned run with a strikeout in the final 1.1 innings.
Everything started with two outs in the bottom of the first after Ian Happ (1-for-3 with a stolen base) singled and stole second. A base hit from Matt Rose (3-for-4 with a double and two RBI) drove in Happ, and singles by Ian Rice (1-for-3) and Adonis Paula (2-for-4 with two RBI) brought Rose around to score. Eloy Jimenez (0-for-3 with a stolen base) walked to start the third and swiped second base. Jimenez scored on a double from Rose, and a single by Paula plated Rose. With the score tied at four in the bottom of the ninth, Donnie Dewees (2-for-5 with a double) led off with a double. Jimenez walked and a wild pitch advanced the runners. Happ was intentionally walked, but pinch-hitter Justin Marra (1-for-1 with an RBI) thwarted that strategy by delivering a one out single to bring Dewees home with a walk-off winner.
The Emeralds did not get rattled Tuesday as they held their composure enough to stretch out for a 9-4 win over Tri-City. Eloy Jimenez (2-for-4 with a home run) started the scoring for the Emeralds as he launched his first home run of the year, a solo shot, in the first inning. Eugene regained the lead in the third inning after Donnie Dewees (3-for-5 with three doubles, four RBI, and a stolen base) doubled with one out, stole third, and scored on an errant pick-off attempt. Blake Headley (0-for-3 with a walk) reached on an error to start the fourth, and singles by Tyler Alamo (1-for-3) and Frandy Delarosa (1-for-3 with an RBI) brought in Headley. A two out double from Dewees drove in Alamo and Headley. Walks to Alamo and Delarosa with one out began the eighth inning. Ho-young Son (1-for-4 with an RBI) drove in Alamo with a single. A wild pitch scored Delarosa. Kevonte Mitchell (0-for-3 with a walk) drew a walk. The third double of the night for Dewees drove in Son and Mitchell.
Starter Carson Sands looked a little more comfortable as he struck out four and was charged with an unearned run in five innings. Lefty Heath Dwyer allowed two earned runs in an inning. Jae-Hoon Ha pitched a scoreless seventh but was touched for an earned with two outs in the eighth. Dave Berg made his professional debut and got the Emeralds out of the inning with no further damage. Berg fanned two in the ninth to collect his first save.
Low Class-A – South Bend Cubs (33-40)
Although the second half of the season is only five games old, South Bend owns the best record in the Midwest League after their 4-2 win over Lansing on Monday. The Cubs tied the game at one in the third inning when Charcer Burks (1-for-5 with a home run) launched his first home run of the season. It remained tied until the seventh inning when Gioskar Amaya (3-for-4 with two doubles and a stolen base) led off with a double and Rashad Crawford (1-for-4 with a stolen base) followed with a single. Crawford stole second and a walk to Gleyber Torres (1-for-3) loaded the bases. An errant pickoff attempt allowed Amaya and Crawford to come home, and a two-out single by Yasiel Balaguert (3-for-4 with an RBI) drove in Torres.
Tommy Thorpe looks like a changed pitcher since moving into the starting rotation as he allowed an earned run and struck out three in five innings. Recently promoted Corbin Hoffner mowed down the Lugnuts, striking out four in three scoreless innings. Despite giving up an earned run, Dillon Maples collected his first save as he pitched the ninth.
A comeback attempt fell just short Tuesday as South Bend lost 5-4 to Lansing. The Cubs had 14 hits but could only convert them into four runs. Kevin Encarnacion (2-for-5) singled to start the second inning and moved to third on a base hit from Jesse Hodges (3-for-4 with a double and two RBI). A ground out allowed Encarnacion to score. South Bend was down 5-1 in the eighth when consecutive singles by Yasiel Balaguert (1-for-4), Encarnacion, and Andrew Ely (1-for-3 with an RBI) plated Balaguert. A double from Hodges drove in Encarnacion and Ely.
Zach Hedges toed the bump for South Bend and had a strikeout as he allowed four runs (three earned on five hits with two walks in six innings. Ryan McNeil was also hung with an unearned run in three innings along with two strikeouts.
High Class–A – Myrtle Beach Pelicans (42-33)
The misery continued on Monday for Myrtle Beach as they lost 2-1 to Winston-Salem. Starting pitcher Daury Torrez pitched a whale of a game, allowing an earned run while striking out six in six innings. James Pugliese had two strikeouts but gave up an earned run in two innings. The only run for the Pelicans came in the fifth inning after Danny Lockhart (1-for-4) singled and came home on a two out double from Chesny Young (1-for-4 with a double and an RBI).
Myrtle Beach took out their frustrations on Winston-Salem Tuesday as they turned things on late to win 8-4. The Pelicans stumbled their way through the first five innings and were behind 4-0 in the sixth when Mark Zagunis (1-for-3 with a double and an RBI) walked, Chesny Young (1-for-5 with an RBI) singled, and Jeimer Candelario (4-for-4 with two RBI) was hit by a pitch to load the bases. A sacrifice fly brought in Zagunis, and a double from Victor Caratini (1-for-4 with a double and two RBI) scored Young and Candelario. A two out single by Kevin Brown (2-for-5) led to a throwing error that brought in Caratini to tie the game. Danny Lockhart (2-for-4) singled to lead off the seventh and came home on a double from Zagunis. Candelario plated Zagunis with a single. Just to be on the safe side, Myrtle Beach scored two more in the ninth after Lockhart singled and Zagunis was hit by a pitch. A fielding error allowed Young to reach, scoring Lockhart. A single by Candelario drove in Zagunis.
Jeremy Null had his first start for the Pelicans and saw that he has some work to do as he allowed four earned runs on seven hits while striking out four in five innings. Josh Conway has been pitching better lately. Conway struck out a batter in two scoreless innings. Myrtle Beach then “Unleashed the Heesch.” Michael Heesch had three strikeouts in two perfect innings for his second save.
Double-A – Tennessee Smokies (42-32)
Tennessee wasted a fine effort on Monday as the Smokies lost 3-2 to Mobile. Ryan Williams just continues to impress as he allowed an earned run on six hits and a walk while striking out four in six innings. However, it was another matter with Corey Black as he remained inconsistent. Black struck out four but allowed two earned runs in two innings. The Smokies scored all their runs in the fourth after Willson Contreras (1-for-3) reached on a force and singles by Billy McKinney (2-for-4) and Taylor Davis (1-for-4 with an RBI) brought him home. A sacrifice fly scored McKinney.
Tennessee had a scheduled day off on Tuesday.
Triple-A – Iowa Cubs (40-37)
It was a disappointing Monday afternoon for the I-Cubs as they lost 2-1 to New Orleans in 12 innings. Lefty Jeffry Antigua was given the spot start and responded well, giving up only an earned run while striking out a batter in five innings. Joe Ortiz took one for the team as he went four perfect innings. Blake Cooper was also stretched to his limits, as he struck out two but was charged with an unearned run in three innings. The only run for Iowa came in the fifth inning after pinch-hitter Ryan Dent and Arismendy Alcantara (1-for-4) opened with walks. A single by John Andreoli (1-for-5) loaded the bases, and a ground out scored Dent.
Iowa had a game in their hands on Tuesday and gave it away as they lost 6-4 to Round Rock. The I-Cubs jumped out to a three run lead in the third inning after John Andreoli led off with a triple and came home on a single from Rubi Silva. A double by Chris Valaika brought in Silva, and a two-out double from Kyle Schwarber scored Valaika. Iowa moved back to a two run lead in the fourth after Junior Lake started the inning with a single and came around on a double from Christian Villanueva.
Dallas Beeler cruised through the first three innings of his start before giving up four runs (two earned) on five hits and a walk while striking out three in 6.2 innings. Yoervis Medina came out of the bullpen and allowed two earned runs in 1.1 innings. Brian Schlitter set down the side in order in the ninth.
Arizona Rookie League – AZL Cubs (5-4)
Late on Sunday, the AZL Cubs lost 11-6 to the AZL Giants. It was a tough night for Carlos A. Rodriguez, as he was rocked for 10 earned runs in 3.2 innings. Dylan Cease had two strikeouts in two perfect innings. Robert Garcia remained hot as he was 2-for-3 with a triple and two RBI, while Carlos Sepulveda went 2-for-5 with a double and two RBI.
On Monday, the A-Cubs could not mount any offense as they lost 3-1 to the AZL Mariners. James Norwood had his first action since going on the DL and allowed two runs (one earned) in an inning. Third baseman Wladimir Galindo was 1-for-4 with a double and outfielder Alex Bautista went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Persistence paid off for the AZL Cubs on Tuesday as they outlasted the AZL Mariners 9-8. Converted position player Mark Malave picked up his first professional win as he had a strikeout in a scoreless ninth. The A-Cubs were able to take advantage of five Mariner errors, as shortstop Andruw Monasterio went 2-for-4 with two RBI, while Robert Garcia was 2-for-5 with a triple.
Dominican Summer League – DSL Cubs (14-13)
Pitching shined for the DSL Cubs on Monday as they won their second straight, beating the DSL Braves 5-1. Recently signed Sucre Valdez was charged with an unearned run and struck out two in three innings. Andri Rondon went five scoreless innings and had three strikeouts. Outfielder Yovanny Cuevas was 2-for-4 with a double and two RBI, while Tony Rijo went 1-for-4 with an RBI.
The DSL Cubs were never in it on Tuesday as they were crushed 11-2 by the DSL Tigers. Deibi Torres was lit up for six runs (five earned) with two strikeouts in three innings. Outfielder Chris Pieters was 3-for-3 while Yovanny Cuevas went 1-for-5 with two RBI.
Venezuelan Summer League – VSL Cubs (18-20)
It was a heartbreaker for the VSL Cubs on Monday as they lost 2-1 to the VSL Tigers in 10 innings. The V-Cubs could not string together hits, as catcher Daniel Diaz went 1-for-3 with a double. Starter Jesus Arias gave up an earned run and struck out two in four innings. The usually reliable closer Juan Rengifo allowed an earned run in an inning.
The same opponent and the same results occurred on Tuesday as the VSL Cubs lost to the VSL Tigers 9-8 in 11 innings. The V-Cubs were opportunistic on offense as outfielder Jose Rojas was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI while catcher Roberto Vahlis went 1-for-4 with two RBI. Riger Fernandez was one of the victims of the team’s nine errors as he allowed four runs (two earned) in 3.1 innings.
News and Notes
The Chicago Cubs sent OF Jorge Soler to the Iowa Cubs on a rehab assignment; assigned C/1B Cael Brockmeyer to the Myrtle Beach Pelicans from the South Bend Cubs; assigned RHP Jared Cheek to the Eugene Emeralds; assigned RHP Jordan Brink to the AZL Cubs from the Eugene Emeralds.
The Iowa Cubs activated RHP Armando Rivero. The South Bend Cubs sent RHP James Norwood to the AZL Cubs on a rehab assignment.