It wasn’t all pretty to start the week, but there was plenty to cheer about in the Cubs’ minor leagues. Marcus Mastrobuoni cracked two home runs for Eugene, and Ryan Kellogg pitched well for South Bend. Meanwhile, Billy McKinney and Chesny Young are starting to heat up for Tennessee.
Including Rookie League and Dominican League highlights, the Down on the Farm Report has the highs and the lows.
Short Season Class-A – Eugene Emeralds (13-5)
On Monday, Everett gave Eugene all it could handle for five innings before the Ems pulled away with a 7-5 win. Wladimir Galindo drew a bases loaded walk to bring in Andruw Monasterio, and Marcus Mastrobuoni launched a Grand Slam home run, plating Taylor Davis, Chris Pieters and Galindo in the sixth inning. Robert Garcia scored on a fielding error in the seventh, and Mastrobuoni belted a solo home run in the eighth inning.
It wasn’t a good start for Pedro Silverio, as he allowed three earned runs but struck out five in four innings. Enrique De Los Rio didn’t fare much better as he gave up two earned runs in 1.2 innings. Tommy Nance turned things around with five strikeouts in 1.2 innings, and Jared Cheek fanned two in 1.2 perfect innings for his third save.
Low Class-A – South Bend Cubs (50-32)
It was an unhappy Fourth for South Bend on Monday as they lost 6-3 to Fort Wayne. Carson Sands had another brief appearance as he allowed four earned runs in 2.2 innings before exiting. Greyfer Eregua was called on to fill the gap and gave up two earned runs in 3.1 innings. John Williamson pitched two scoreless innings.
South Bend just could not get anything going on Tuesday night as the dropped their second straight to Fort Wayne 3-1. Ryan Kellogg had a decent effort, striking out six and allowing three runs in five innings. Kyle Twomey relieved and had three strikeouts in three scoreless innings.
A double by Eloy Jimenez (2-for-4 with a double and an RBI) drove in Donnie Dewees (1-for-4) in the first inning. The SB Cubs loaded the bases in the top of the ninth, but could not capitalize.
High Class–A – Myrtle Beach Pelicans (41-41)
It was a game to forget for Myrtle Beach on Monday as the Pelicans lost 8-0 to Winston-Salem. Zach Hedges didn’t get any favors as he allowed seven runs (five earned) and had four strikeouts in 5.1 innings. Pedro Araujo was also charged with an unearned run as he pitched 2.2 innings. The Pelicans had only five hits as Rashad Crawford was 2-for-3 with a double, while David Bote and Andrew Ely were each 1-for-3 and Charcer Burks was 1-for-4.
Myrtle Beach’s game on Tuesday was postponed due to rain.
Double-A – Tennessee Smokies (35-47)
Tennessee got great pitching and surprising offense on Monday as the Smokies beat Jackson 4-3. Jen-Ho Tseng continued to impress as he had three strikeouts and allowed three earned runs in seven innings of work. David Garner tossed a perfect inning, and Jose Rosario struck out the side in the ninth for his fourth save.
Putting the Smokies on the board in the first inning was a solo home run from Chesny Young (1-for-3 with a home run). A single by Gioskar Amaya (1-for-4) and a walk to Kelly Dugan (0-for-3) set up Ben Carhart (1-for-4 with a home run and three RBI), who then blasted a three-run homer in the second inning.
After a wonderful start on Tuesday, things just fell apart for Tennessee as the Smokies lost to Jackson 6-4 in 11 innings. Billy McKinney (2-for-4 with a triple and three RBI) stroked a three-run triple in the first inning, scoring Bijan Rademacher (1-for-5), Chesny Young (2-for-6), and Ian Happ (3-for-5 with a double). Trey Martin (2-for-5 with an RBI and a stolen base) singled in Carlos Penalver (1-for-5) in the fourth inning.
Duane Underwood Jr. had a rough outing before leaving with an apparent injury. Underwood Jr. made 56 pitches in three innings and allowed two runs while striking out two batters. Stephen Perakslis took over for Underwood Jr. and tossed three scoreless innings. Joe Nathan and David Berg each tossed a scoreless innings, but James Farris surrendered four earned runs in three innings and suffered the loss.
Triple-A – Iowa Cubs (40-45)
Iowa started the week well by holding on for a 4-3 victory over Omaha on Monday. Mark Zagunis (2-for-4 with a home run and two RBI) thumped a two-run homer with Tommy La Stella (2-for-3) on base in the first inning. Dan Vogelbach (1-for-2 with a double and an RBI) double in La Stella and a single by Matt Murton (2-for-4 with an RBI) drove in Vogelbach in the fifth inning.
Aaron Brooks stumbled again in a start as he allowed three earned runs and had five strikeouts in 3.1 innings. Starling Peralta was called to do some heavy lifting as he struck out two in 3.2 scoreless innings. Armando Rivero had two strikeouts and Corey Black picked up his third save as each pitched an inning.
It was another pitching debacle for Iowa on Tuesday as they lost to Omaha 12-3. Drew Rucinski did what Drew Rucinski does, gave up seven earned runs and had three strikeouts in 5.2 innings. C.J. Riefenhauser relieved and allowed an earned run in 2.1 innings, while Miguel Mejia was lit up for four runs in the ninth.
The I-Cubs got solo home runs from Tim Federowicz (2-for-3 with a home run) and Logan Watkins (1-for-4 with a home run) in the second inning, and a sacrifice fly brought in Kris Negron (2-for-4 with a stolen base) in the fourth. Munenori Kawasaki (2-for-3 with an RBI) scored on a double play in the ninth.
Arizona Rookie League – AZL Cubs (6-5)
In a rare early game, the A-Cubs were steamrolled by the AZL Indians 14-2 on Monday. Yapson Gomez did the best for the pitching staff, allowing four runs (two earned) and striking out eight in 5.1 innings. Isaac Parades went 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI while Connor Myers (1-for-3) got his first professional hit.
Dominican Summer League – DSL-1 Cubs (12-15)
It was a see-saw game for D-1 on Monday as they beat the DSL Pirates 5-4. Luis Hidalgo (1-for-4 with a home run and three RBI) belted his sixth home run, a two-run shot while Rafael Narea went 3-for-3. Jose Mac Donna shut down the Pirates in the final 1.2 innings for his third win.
D-1 could not overcome an early deficit on Tuesday as they lost to the DSL Indians 6-4. Second baseman Orian Nunez went 2-for-4 with a double, an RBI, and two stolen bases, including a steal of home. Edison Novas pitched two scoreless innings of relief.
Dominican Summer League – DSL-2 Cubs (18-8)
It took a while before teams heated up on Monday, but D-2 was able to best the DSL Giants 8-6. Young catcher Miguel Amaya remains impressive as he was 2-for-4 with two RBI. Yan De La Cruz came on in relief and pitched three scoreless innings for the win.
In a 14-inning marathon on Tuesday, D-2 was able to one-up Diamondbacks-2, winning 4-3. Abraham Rodriguez was the big stick as he went 2-for-6 with two RBI and a stolen base. Luis Escanio was electric in relief, allowing an earned run and striking out seven in 3.2 innings.
News and Notes
The Chicago Cubs assigned RHP Jose Rosario to the Iowa Cubs from the Tennessee Smokies.