Cubs Minors Recap: Raley with 7 shutout innings; Amaya HRs in return; more roster moves ahead

Cubs Minors Recap: Raley with 7 shutout innings; Amaya HRs in return; more roster moves ahead
Brooks Raley

In case you missed it, Jorge Soler will make his Cubs debut tomorrow as the DH for the AZ Rookie League Cubs.  Meanwhile, Timothy Saunders made his debut in high class A Daytona after hitting .493 in the rookie league.  I don't know if he'll stay up there or if he's just replacing the injured Arismendy Alcantara.

In another move, Yao-Lin Wang will get another shot at the rotation after having some success in the relief at Peoria.  That timing is especially important because Jose Rosario came out of the game with an apparent injury today.

Iowa 2 - New Orleans 1

  • LHP Brooks Raley, 24, has been the most impressive pitcher in Iowa this season and today, while he had some atypical struggles with control, he completely shut down the Zephyrs.  Raley did not allow a run over 7 innings, though he walked 4.  He also struck out 4.  Raley works with a 2 seam fastball which is about 89-92, a slider, and a change.  His good athleticism has helped him improve his command as he's moved up the levels.  Raley has a 3.18 ERA with 22 walks and 48 Ks in 65 innings.
  • Jay Jackson has been great in relief but today he gave up a game tying solo HR in his one inning of work.  Michael Bowden, meanwhile, shows no signs of slowing down.  He pitched 2 perfect innings with 3 Ks.   His ERA at Iowa is 1.80.  He has 7 walks and 24 Ks in 20 IP.
  • LHP Jeff Beliveau picked up the win when he struck out the side in his only inning of work.  His ERA is at 4.05 on the year.
  • Brett Jackson had a double and a walk in 6 PAs and struck out just once, giving him just 3 in his last 20 PAs.  Maybe things are finally starting to click.
  • Dave Sappelt had a single and a double to raise his overall average to .257 (.331 vs. lefties).
  • Adrian Cardenas had a single and 3 walks.

Charlotte 3 - Daytona 1

  • RHP PJ Francescon, 23, struggled a bit with his command, uncharacteristically walking 4 men. He also allowed 7 hits, including a 2 run HR.  He allowed 3 runs total and his ERA in Daytona stands at 3.58.
  • Daytona's lone run was on a solo shot by DH Taylor Davis.  

West Michigan 9 - Peoria 8

  • Jose Rosario struggled and then left the game after 2 innngs (3 runs).  According to the Chiefs twitter feed, it was an arm injury but no specifics yet.
  • After the Chiefs rallied with 4 runs to take a 5-3 lead, LHP Sheldon McDonald gave it right back with 4 runs allowed in the 4th.
  • RHPs Luis Liria (2.1 IP) and Austin Reed (2 IP) managed to stop the bleeding with 4.1 scoreless innings between them.  Reed did not allow a hit but walked 3 batters.
  • RHP Larry Suarez is a big-bodied 6'4" pitcher from Venezuela who can bring it at up to 96 mph.  On the surface, that seems like Carlos Zambrano.  But that's only on the surface.  Suarez gets hit way too much for someone who throws that hard and part of that reason is it comes over the top and it's easy for a batter to locate early enough to gear up for it.  Today Suarez was done in by some shoddy defense, though some of it was his own as both he and Krist committed crucial errors to help WM rally past the Chiefs in the 10th.
  • Lots of offense as every Chief in the lineup had a hit and 6 of them had doubles.  2B Zeke DeVoss had a double, single and 2 RBI as the leadoff man.
  • SS Javier Baez went 2 for 5 with a double and a run scored.  He's hitting .333/.394/.582 on the year.  If there's one thing you'd like to see him do, it's improve his walk to strikeout ratio, which is 7 to 33 right now.  If you're looking for reasons as to why he hasn't been promoted, that's a good place to start.
  • C Chadd Krist has found his inner Johnny Bench since signing.  He has had a mult-hit game in all 6 games he's played for Peoria.  Today he went 2 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI.  He also scored 2 runs.
  • Bijan Rademacher made his Peoria debut and, like Krist, he's making Jason McLeod look like a genius in his first draft.  After posting a .980 OPS between AZ and Boise, Rademacher got his 2nd promotion of the season and didn't skip a beat.  He doubled, singled, scored a run, and drove in another.
  • You only wish Pin-Chieh Chen was a little bigger because he really has some intriguing baseball skills -- great ability to make contact and get on base, speed, defense, arm.  He's hitting .254 but 40 walks gives him a solid .343 OBP on the year.  Today he had a double, single, and walk in 5 PAs.  He had 2 RBI and also scored 2 runs.

Yakima 8 - Boise 4

  • Rough day for RHPs Tayler Scott and Hayden Simpson.  Scott lasted just 4.2 innings, giving up 4 runs (3 earned) on 3 walks.  He also had 3 Ks.  He's been solid overall, posting a 2.32 ERA even after this performance.  Simpson, on the other hand, was even worse, allowing 4 runs (3 earned) in just 2.1 innings of work to take the loss.  He also walked 3 batters.
  • Su-Min Jung, a 6'2" 190 lbs. RHP from South Korea had a very good outing with 2 perfect innings in which he struck out 3.  Jung has a 3.38 ERA in Boise with 4 walks and 7Ks in 8 innings of work.
  • CF Trey Martin is still on a roll.  The rangy 6'2" outfielder, who many considered a sleeper pick in last year's draft, continues to prove those people right.  Martin raised his average to .309 with 2 more hits.  His complete line at Boise is .309/.347/.471.  He's beginning to show a little bit of power (3 HRs in 68 ABs) but his plate discipline, 4 walks, still needs some work.  He has the kind of athleticism and tools, however, that may translate as climbs the organizational ladder.
  • Gioskar Amaya, 19,  is one of those guys that can probably roll out of bed and line a single right up the middle.  After sitting out for about 3 games, Amaya was the DH and hit his 4th HR, singled, and walked twice.  He also scored 2 runs.  Amaya is hitting .315/.389/.550 on the year.
  • 2B Stephen Bruno is also a very good hitter, though he lacks Amaya's overall athleticism, gap power, and plate discipline.  Bruno is 2 inches shorter at 5'9" while also being 2 years older.  Still, the kid can rake.  He proved it in Virginia and hes proving it in the pros.  2 more hits put him at .323 on the year.
  • 3B Jeimer Candelario makes it a tough top 4 hitters for Boise.  Candelario also had 2 hits and drove in 2 runs.  A slump took the luster out of his early numbers but he's still at .294/.344/.444 on the year with 5 HRs.  And don't forget that he's just 18 and made the jump from the DSL.

AZL Cubs 4 - AZL Dodgers 0

  • 5th round pick and LHP Anthony Prieto got the start and pitched 2 perfect innings, striking out 2.   Arturo Maltos0-Garcia, Loiger Padron, and Alvido Jimemez kept the shutout in tact.  Padron got the win with 3 strong innings in which he walked one and struck out 3.
  • 2B Daniel Lockhart had a double and 2 RBI.  The energetic LH hitter is batting .338 on the year.
  • At 22 with a filled out 5'10, 200 lbs. body, 3B Ben Carhart doesn't leave any room for projection.  What you see is pretty close to what you're going to get.  What you see now is a solid line drive hitter, but Carhart will have to depend on his ability to adjust to survive the upper levels.
  • C Neftali Rosario was a 2011 pick who just turned 19.  Although he's very, very far away, some in the Cubs organization consider him the next best all-around C after Welington Castillo.  He hasn't shown it to this point, but he did get 2 hits







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    We gotta figure Raley is the favorite right now to fill in for Dempster, right?

  • In reply to João Lucas:

    He's my favorite for the rotation but he won't take the first start if Demp is traded today. Rusin and Coleman are likely the favorites at least for the first one...unless the Cubs want to give Volstad another shot, which he really hasn't earned. There's always Rodrigo Lopez!

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    ^ good question

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    If Raley replaces Demp we would have three lefties in the rotation, that would be kind of cool.

  • In reply to James Knott:

    That's a strange sight for Cubs fans. Then again, maybe Maholm isn't here either after the deadline.

  • Yesterday on twitter Kevin Goldstein said Baez has trouble recognizing and hitting breaking stuff. Can any of you guys who have seen Baez weigh in on this?

  • John,

    Have been reading Cubs Den for a few months now and it is exceptional. Thanks to you & Tom for your hard work.

    It is exciting to see the Cubs finally getting some top 25-50 prospects again in the system. Looking forward to guys like Baez, Amora, Soler, etc being home-grown impact players.

    I'm not super-knowledgeable about scouting, so could you lend a little perspective on why the Cubs up until now have perennially drafted "yawnstipating" players? (a term borrowed from Razzball). I'm talking about our huge stock of 4th OF, utility infielders, and #4/5 SP in the system. We've really not drafted a potential frontline starter in 10 years. Until recently, the Wilkens philosophy has been to draft 'great athletes' but these guys (Vitters, Colvin, BJax) all seem to top out at AAA. Not laying it all at Wilkens feet, but until the new FO came in, our draft picks have all been extra-medium

  • Here's a quote from Jon Heyman ‏@JonHeymanCBS

    scout on jorge soler: "hes going to be a monster.'' (thats a good thing, btw) #cubs

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    I just want to thank you for relentless effort in reporting on the Cubs minor league system. I used to look at each affiliates box score every day but now I get all the info I need from you with the analysis and scouting reports you can't get from a box score. I wish I could get the same thing on the White Sox minor leagues.

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