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Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Upshaw scores 3, knocks in 3; Paula goes 4-for-4; Assad hurls 5 shutout

Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Upshaw scores 3, knocks in 3; Paula goes 4-for-4; Assad hurls 5 shutout
Javier Assad

AAA

Omaha 5, Iowa 2

Game Recap

Bijan Rademacher

Bijan Rademacher

Bijan Rademacher and Chris Dominguez hit solo home runs in a comeback attempt but the five runs surrendered by Williams Perez over the first two innings proved to deep a hole.

Top Performers

  • Bijan Rademacher: 1-3, HR (5), R, RBI, BB
  • Chris Dominguez: 1-3, HR (10), R, RBI
  • Chesny Young: 1-3, SB (6)
  • Felix Pena: 3 IP, H, BB, 3 K
  • Jack Leathersich: IP, 3 K

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Felix Pena

Felix Pena

This recent stretch of games is the best Felix Pena has looked all year. He was one of the top relievers in the PCL last season and was effective during his short stint in the majors. This year has been a different story until the past couple of weeks. His command was off and his stuff not nearly as sharp which led to rocky stretches in both Chicago and Iowa. But in his four August appearances Pena has gone 10.2 innings, allowing just 2 runs on 5 hits and 1 walk while striking out 16. If he can continue pitching like this the rest of the season he could be a big help to the Cubs in September once rosters expand.

Another pitcher shooting for a September recall and posting eerily similar numbers of late, Jack Leathersich has not allowed a run in his past 11 outings. In his last 10.2 innings Leathersich has matched Pena with 16 punch outs while allowing only 3 hits, 3 walks and a hit batter to reach.

AA

Biloxi 5, Tennessee 0

Game Recap

Biloxi dominated from the start, plating two in the first and building a 5-0 lead by the middle innings. Tennessee meanwhile was shut down completely in the first half of the game. The bats woke up a little in the later going but they couldn't break the shutout.

Top Performers

  • James Pugliese: 3 IP, H, R, BB (1.44 ERA)
  • Craig Brooks: IP, BB, 2 K (2.67 ERA)
  • Ian Rice: 1-2, BB

Stephen Perakslis

Stephen Perakslis

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Steve Perakslis made his second straight start after spending the majority of the season pitching out of the Tennessee bullpen (he made two spot starts with Iowa earlier in the year). His start last week was brilliant (5 IP, H, 0 R, BB, 9 K) but this outing did not go as well (4 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 4 K).

Advanced A

Myrtle Beach 8, Carolina 3

Game Recap

Duncan Robinson (by Stephanie Lynn)

Duncan Robinson (by Stephanie Lynn)

This is how you like to snap a losing streak. You get a dominant starting pitching performance from Duncan Robinson and then generate multiple rallies with your offense. Jesse Hodges, Robert Garcia and Adonis Paula, who tied a career-high with four hits, led the offense, although just about every hitter had a hand.

Top Performers

  • Adonis Paula: 4-4, 2B, R, 2 RBI
  • Robert Garcia: 2-3, 2 R, BB, 2 SB (15, 16)
  • Jesse Hodges: 1-3, HR (12), R, RBI, BB
  • Zack Short: 1-3, R, RBI, BB, SB (3)
  • Roberto Caro: 1-3, R, RBI, BB, SB (2)
  • Vimael Machin: 1-3, R, BB
  • Duncan Robinson: 5 IP, 3 H, R, BB, 5 K (W, 3-3, 2.34)
  • Jordan Minch: IP, H, 3 K (5.97 ERA)
  • Dakota Mekkes: 1.1 IP, K (0.86 ERA)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Adonis Paula (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

Adonis Paula (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

He may not be the most talented player on the roster, in fact he may be the least, but that won't stop Adonis Paula from having fun. The always gregarious corner infielder could not contain an ear-to-ear grin on his face while standing on base after completing his perfect night at the dish. This is one of the reasons I love Minor League Baseball. Most will fall short of achieving their The Major League dream but when you see guys that are still competing simply for the love of the game like Paula it is contagious.

The second inning homer by Jesse Hodges snapped a 2-for-20 slump by the slugging third sacker.

A

South Bend 12, Dayton 4

Game Recap

The Cubs hitters jumped all over Dayton right from the get go, scoring five times in the first and never let up as the night progressed. All nine batters had reached base before the game was half over, and only Yeiler Peguero failed to reach at least twice before the game ended. They finished 8-for-18 with runners in scoring position. Alberto Mineo reached safely four times and scored three runs. Austin Upshaw also scored three runs and drove in three as well.

Top Performers

  • Austin Upshaw: 2-5, 3 R, 3 RBI
  • Alberto Mineo: 3-4, 2B, 3 R, RBI
  • Andruw Monasterio: 3-5, 2B, 2 R, RBI
  • Kevonte Mitchell: 2-5, 2B, R, 2 RBI
  • Tyler Payne: 2-5, 2B, R, 2 RBI
  • Chris Pieters: 2-5, 2B, RBI
  • Elvis Diaz: 2 Ip, 2 H, BB, 2 K (9.00 ERA)
  • Yapson Gomez: 2 IP, 2 BB, 5 K (4.97 ERA)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Albert Mineo

Albert Mineo

Austin Upshaw had cooled down at the plate after getting his pro career off to such a scorching start, but he may be finding his groove again. He saw his average plummet from .329 on July 26th (his last multi-hit game before yesterday) all the way down to .262 a few days ago, but he now has hits in 5 of his last 6 games. Hopefully getting over the hump and collecting more than one hit in a game for the first time in a while can propel him to a strong finish.

Over his past 8 games Alberto Mineo is 13-for-31 (.419).

Here is a nice write up on the journey Kevonte Mitchell has taken as a ball player.

A-

Eugene 4, Spokane 1

Game Recap

Javier Assad and two relievers worked around four errors behind them by punching out 16 Spokane hitters. Meanwhile the Emeralds hitters took advantage of three Spokane miscues and some other sloppy defense to push across four runs.

Top Performers

  • Javier Assad: 5 IP, 3 H, BB, 7 K (W, 3-5, 3.86)
  • Ben Hecht: 2 IP, H, BB, 3 K (2.53)
  • Luis Aquino: 2 IP, H, R, 0 ER, BB, 6 K (0.74)
  • Brandon Hughes: 2-3, 2B, R, 3 RBI
  • Rafael Narea: 2-4, R

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

javier-assad-ftThe 20-year old Javier Assad has had his ups-and-downs this season, and has been susceptible to the big inning, but he controls his low-to-mid-90s fastball well and when he gets ahead can put hitters away with his 1-to-7 breaking ball and developing changeup. I feel like there is more to come with Assad. His body is still a little soft and has not fully matured. It is possible we see a bump in velocity if he can get himself into prime shape in the future.

Luis Aquino and Ben Hecht were no less effective. In fact, NWL All-Star Aquino struck out the side in both innings he pitched. The most consistent reliever for the Ems this season, Aquino is already 24 years old, so he is not much of a prospect, but his effectiveness in the NWL can not be understated. He has a very short stride and lands on a stiff front leg so there is likely some deception to his delivery that helps his low 90s fastball and slider to play up at this level. Hecht not only gets excellent downward plane on his fastball but his plus breaking ball was buckling knees during his two innings, just as it had over the first 11 innings of his career. Hecht has 24 Ks in 13 total innings as a pro. The Cubs have found a nice relief prospect in the 12th rounder from Wichita State. He should become a weapon out of the pen for South Bend and Myrtle Beach next season if he can maintain control of those pitches. His 10 walks in those 13 innings are the concern.

DSL

Rangers1  9, Cubs1  8 (10 Innings)

Rangers2  5, Cubs2  4 (11 Innings)

Rangers2  9, Cubs2  4 (8 Innings)

Comments

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  • The more I hear & read of Assad the more I like.

  • In reply to Milk Stout:

    There is talent there and I think he can get stronger. Potential for three average or better pitches and already has better command than most 20 year olds.

  • Big week ahead. Driving with my son as he starts his freshman year of college at Univ of TN. We are going to the Smokies game on Wed night. I'm looking forward to seeing the players all of you have educated us on for years. I can't think of a better way to spend the last evening with my oldest child before he begins the next phase of his life. I love my family, baseball and our Cubs!! If any Denizens will be there, let's grab a cold one.

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