Cubs Minors Recap: Daytona on the brink of FSL title; Smokies bounce back behind Baez's HR

Cubs Minors Recap: Daytona on the brink of FSL title; Smokies bounce back behind Baez's HR

So...the Daytona Cubs look unstoppable right now and the Smokies offense finally woke up.  Javy Baez woke up and hopefully that becomes a problem for the Barons, but the Smokies still have to win two in a row to advance.  Here's the home run...

Hard to say but looks like Javy was giving it a bit to the catcher there after he hit it. I wonder if there's a history there.

The D-Cubs on the other hand, are on the brink of an FSL title.  They are one win away and while Cubs fans know better than anyone that anything can happen and nothing is ever certain, there is no doubt they are playing very well right now .  Still, I'm sure you'll all understand if I hold off on the celebration until the last out.

On with the recap...

Tennessee 9 - Birmingham 2

  • LHP Eric Jokisch took the mound with a lot of pressure today.  Not only were the Smokies on the brink of elimination, but they weren't scoring runs.  Jokisch responded with a clutch 7.2 inning performance in which he allowed just two runs.  Thankfully, the Smokies offense got it going today, so that was more than good enough.  He walked 2 and struck out 4.  
  • Armando Rivero got the last out in the 8th and then gave why to the steady Frank Batista, who finished the game with a scoreless inning.
  • OF Matt Szczur went 2 for 4 and scored twice.
  • As seen above, Javier Baez unloaded with his first career postseason HR way out to left-center field.  The blast drove in two.  Baez also later singled and scored.
  • 1B Justin Bour singled, scored a run, and drove in another.  He had struggled up until now so perhaps this will get him going.  He's been a steady presence in the middle of that order for Tennessee in the second half.
  • 3B Christian Villanueva singled twice, scored, and added an RBI.
  • Big day for OF John Andreoli who doubled twice and drove in two.  He also scored a run.  The Smokies offense has slumped a bit, but Andreoli has been one bright spot, hitting .455 in the first 3 games.

Daytona 2-  Charlotte 0

  • It seems the only thing that can stop the D-Cubs these days is the weather.  They were able to get a full game in today and Ivan Pineyro stepped up and was his usual self, using a change-up to play up his average fastball and breaking pitch.  He had the Stone Crabs off balance all day, going 7  scoreless innings and allowing just 3 singles and one walk.  He also struck out 7,  I've heard mixed opinion on Pineyro and much of that is likely because neither his fastball or breaking pitch are true out pitches, but his change-up has been a plus pitch since arriving.  Could the Cubs have obtained another top finesse righty pitching prospect for the 2nd year in a row?
  • LHP Frank Del Valle finished up with 2 scoreless innings to record the save.
  • Not much offense but not much was needed today.  The dynamic duo at the top, Pin-chieh Chen and Zeke DeVoss each singled twice but did not factor in the scoring.
  • Dustin Geiger singled and scored a run.
  • 1B Dan Vogelbach got into the action today, driving in Geiger with a double for the game's first run and, as it turns out, the only one they needed.  He also walked.
  • Fellow late season arrival Kris Bryant led off the 7th with a double and then scored a key insurance run when Chadd Krist drove him home with a double of his own.  Krist also singled.
  • Anthony Giansanti doubled and went 1 for 4 overall.

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  • fb_avatar

    Apparently DeVoss had "the catch of the year" -- they're trying to find video. Caught it on a dead run to straightaway center.

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    He had the catch of the last year too. That kid is incredibly acrobatic. He makes spectacular plays with crazy regularity. If only he could hit a bit more.

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    In reply to John Arguello:

    Here's a description of it:

    @HenryMaxwellCHI: My boy @ZekeDeVoss just supermanned one of the greatest catches I've seen on a baseball field for the @daytonacubs #NoGravity

  • In reply to Mike Moody:

    Can't wait to see it. Hope they come up with video for it. Did you see the one in Peoria last year?

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to John Arguello:

    The one where he's at second base? Yeah, sounds similar to the one tonight. Also this masterpiece from college:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3e96M12NEHE

    You're right, if he figures out how to incorporate some selective aggressiveness into his game at the plate, he could really be something.

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    In reply to Mike Moody:

    I've seen two from DeVoss this year that would be pretty tough to top!

  • Was at the Daytona game last night. Pineyro pitched out of his mind the first two innings. Made five straight strikeouts to start the game before a soft ground out that Geiger handled unassisted at first. Pitching and great defense ruled last night as there were also two double plays.

    DeVoss’ catch in center was an unbelievable highlight reel grab. The crowd knew it was trouble the moment it left the bat. DeVoss turned and started to make a dead run toward the 400 foot sign in centerfield. At the last moment left his feet for Jordan-like air, caught the ball and landed in a somersault. Then stood up and held the ball high in the air with his glove so the umpire could call the out. He got a standing ovation twice – once when he made the catch and another when he came into the dugout after the third out that inning. If I never see a better catch in baseball I’ll be all right with that one.

    Really impressed with the Daytona squad this year. It’s exciting baseball to watch.

  • In reply to Jayhawk81:

    Thanks for the first hand observations, Jayhawk. And great description on DeVoss' catch. I can visualize it!

  • John, thanks for your playoff updates. Exciting post season. Lots of fun I don't understand why CSN hasn't figure out to broadcast these game. I think nearly every Cub fan would rather watch these playoff games instead of the Cub games.

    Two questions:

    1. Do you know the projected SPs for the rest of the series for both Daytona and Smokies?

    2. I don't understand why John Andreoli does not get more love and hype? Why is he not considered one of our top prospects? His stats, this year and last, are rock solid. What gives?

  • In reply to Nondorf:

    Regarding Andreoli, it is because he has no power. He is also not a speedster despite his high SB totals in the minors so the fear is once he starts going up against MLB catchers his success rate will drop. Also, there are three guys on his own team and two more guys in AAA that play a better CF than him, so the chances are he is going to have to make it playing a corner, which makes it difficult without any power.

    He is not a non-entity, but he is one of those guys that is going to have to prove it at every level and do it despite other guys being given the priority because they will possess better upside. So his chances are not great because he needs to keep performing at the same high level and he also needs the guys in front of him to fail before he will be given a chance.

  • In reply to Nondorf:

    I don't know the projected starters but I imagine the next guy up has to be either Ben Wells, who hasn't pitched yet and then Corey Black. They could skip Wells, though if they wanted to. The next Smokies pitcher is Eduardo Figueroa and then it's either Matt Loosen or back to the top with Nick Struck. Boise is going with Blackburn next.

    I think Andreoli is right in the mix with Matt Szczur and others as far as talent and long term potential, though Szczzur is the better defender in CF and that gives him the edge. Sometimes hype and ranking cling close to a prospects pedigree and Szczur has it and Andreoli does not. That may not be fair, but in the end the only thing that matters is who produces at the MLB level and I think Andreoli has as good a chance to do that as any of the Cubs second tier OF prospects.

  • Good to see our minor league teams are living up to there press clippings.

  • In reply to mutant beast:

    And the nice thing is they are winning with their good prospects, not minor league journeymen or organizational players (i.e. which is pretty much what Birmingham is, the team Tennessee is trying to beat).

  • I heard Baez was complaining about catcher interference, not talking smack. But can you blame the catcher? They gotta slow down Javier's bat somehow. lol

  • In reply to HoosierDaddy:

    LOL ;) Thanks Hoosier. They didn't mention it during the game -- or if they did, I missed it. Judging by the non-reaction by the catcher, you are probably right.

  • That's not a good sign for the opposition if Baez is hitting long homers dispute catcher interference.

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Not for them but oh boy, doesn't that put an even bigger smile on Cubs' fans. Thanks for the info 44!

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Haha ;)

  • If an umpire calls catcher interference does the home run count?

  • In reply to 44slug:

    Yep. Offense can elect to ignore it if the play turns out better than what the rules allow for the penalty.

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    Exciting times for the Cubs minor league system. These teams are filled with guys who play the game the right way. I'm very encouraged by the quality arms the FO gets back in these trades, as well as the late round draft picks they've made this far. They've really infused the system with the right kind of depth.

  • In reply to Andrue Weber:

    I think you hit the nail on the head when you said they play it the right way. Soon, a few will be doing that in Wrigley.

  • Cubs DFA Cody Ransom to make room for Scott Baker.

  • fb_avatar
    In reply to AZBOB:

    He hasn't played since rosters expanded Sept 1.......he was an obvious choice. He has 5 hits since July 14th.....

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