Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Tseng finishes season strong; Young stays scorching hot as Ems secure playoff berth; Ferrebus leads AZL Cubs to division-clinching win

AAA

Iowa 7, Omaha 3

Game Recap

Jen-Ho Tseng held Omaha to just two runs over seven innings but it took a late offensive flurry to secure the victory. Iowa plated three runs in the top of the seventh then three more in the ninth despite just six hits on the day. They managed it thanks to a bout of wildness from the Omaha bullpen. Iowa walked eight times over the final three innings. Bijan Rademacher and Taylor Davis both cashed in on the opportunities by each driving in three runs.

Top Performers

  • Jen-Ho Tseng: 7 IP, 8 H, 2 R, BB, 3 K (W, 6-1, 1.80)
  • Pierce Johnson: IP, 3 K (S, 9, 4.31)
  • Bijan Rademacher: 2-4, R, 3 RBI, BB, SB (3)
  • Taylor Davis: 2-4, 3 RBI, BB
  • John Andreoli: 2-4, 2B, 2 R, BB
  • Jemile Weeks: 0-3, R, RBI, 2 BB, SB (4)
  • Jacob Hannemann: 0-3, 2 BB, SB (22)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Bijan Rademacher

Bijan Rademacher

Jen-Ho Tseng has done everything possible to put himself in position to challenge for a rotation spot with the big club come spring. Not only are his overall numbers as good as any in the system (24 GS, 13-4, 2.54, 145.1 IP, 127 H, 41 ER, 38 BB, 122 K) but he has been even better with Iowa (6-1, 1.80) than he was with Tennessee (7-3, 2.99).

Two players within striking distance of finishing the year with a .300 average also happen to be the two hottest hitters on the team. Bijan Rademacher (.299/.381/.445) has hit .373 since the start of August and Taylor Davis (.297/.358/.431) has 8 hits and 5 RBI in his last 5 games.

AA

Tennessee 4, Jackson 3

Game Recap

The Smokies came back from a 3-1 deficit in the 8th inning. A pinch hit double by Jeffrey Baez brought home the first run and then scored the next on a RBI single off the bat of Charcer Burks. An Andrew Ely sacrifice fly brought in Burks.

Top Performers

  • Casey Bloomquist: 7 IP, 9 H, 3 R, BB, 2 K (3.75)
  • Daury Torrez: 2 IP, H, K (W, 6-4, 1.40)
  • Charcer Burks: 1-3, 2B, R, RBI, BB
  • Andrew Ely: 1-3, R, RBI, SF

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Daury Torrez

Daury Torrez

Not only did he drive in the winning run, but Andrew Ely has hit .382 over the past 10 games and has hits in 11 of his last 12.

The club will have an interesting decision of Daury Torrez in the offseason. A six-year Minor League free agent, Torrez is one of the few power relievers the Cubs possess that exhibits strong command of his pitches, but he also does not strike out many hitters despite his velocity. I expected he would start missing more bats once he grew more comfortable as a full time reliever but so far it hasn't happened. If the Cubs think there is still more upside to unlock they could look to bring back Torrez on a successor contract next year.

Advanced A

Carolina 4, Myrtle Beach 0 (Game 1)

Carolina 4, Myrtle Beach 3 (Game 2)

Game Recap

Two of the Pelicans top starters, Duncan Robinson and Thomas Hatch, were each tagged for 4 runs over 4.2 innings in the doubleheader. The Myrtle Beach offense was unable to climb out of either hole.

Top Performers

  • Jesse Hodges: 4-6, 2B, R, BB
  • Tyler Pearson: 1-3, 2B, R
  • Connor Myers: 1-3, RBI, BB, SAC
  • Adonis Paula: 1-2, BB

A

Bowling Green 5, South Bend 0

Game Recap

Tyson Miller

Tyson Miller

South Bend was shutout for the second straight game, ending their playoff hopes. It had been a dramatic turnaround for the Cubs who rode a 10-game win streak to get back into the race in August after being all but out of it. But the offense came up dry the past few days, not only in the two shutouts, but the team managed just one run in a loss Thursday night as well.

Top Performers

  • Tyson Miller: 6 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 2 BB, 3 K (L, 6-7, 4.48)
  • Andruw Monasterio: 2-4, 2B
  • Aramis Ademan: 1-3, BB
  • Jhonny Pereda: 2-4

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Tyson Miller is a bit of an enigma to me at the moment. I don't have a good feel for his upside as a prospect. He does not give up many hits, but he also does not miss as many bats as I would expect. The most troubling aspect is that for someone tabbed as a groundball pitcher coming out of the draft he has recorded far more fly outs than ground outs this season. I plan to take a closer look at him this offseason.

A-

Eugene 8, Salem-Keizer 3

Game Recap

An absolutely incredible four game run for Jared Young helped Eugene secure a playoff spot. Young knocked in five runs on the night on four hits. It was his third four-hit night in the last four games. Zach Davis also recorded four hits and Michael Cruz drove in two runs.

Top Performers

  • Jared Young: 4-5, 2B, 2 R, 5 RBI
  • Zach Davis: 4-5, 2B, 3B, 2 R
  • Michael Cruz: 2-3, HR (8), R, 2 RBI, HBP
  • Chris Singleton: 1-4, 2 R, SB (5)
  • Enrique De Los Rios: 5 IP, 2 H, R, 4 K (W, 4-1, 3.51)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

I can't remember the last time a guy had 14 hits in 4 games. Jared Young has also knocked in 8 runs in during this run. He even threw a walk in, just for some variety.

Zach Davis hasn't been bad of late either. He is riding a 5-game hitting streak in which he has 12 total hits. The speedster has also stolen 3 bases.

The win wasn't all due to hitting though. Enrique De Los Rios turned in yet another brilliant 5-inning piggy-back performance. It was the 5th time since the start of July that the righty has gone 5 innings while surrendering 1 run or fewer.

AZL

Cubs 6, Reds 1

Game Recap

Emilio Ferrebus allowed just one run over six innings and the Cubs offense took advantage of five Reds errors to clinch the second half division title.

Top Performers

  • Emilio Ferrebus: 6 IP, 4 H, R, 2 BB, 5 K (W, 2-1, 4.76)
  • Jeremiah Estrada: 2 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 2 K (1.42)
  • Jonathan Sierra: 2-4, R, BB, 2 SB (5, 6)
  • Carlos Sepulveda: 2-5, 2B, R, RBI
  • Yovanny Cuevas: 1-4, 2B, 2 RBI

Comments

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  • I know you had a good look at Jen-Ho Tseng this year at Iowa, Michael. After getting knocked around pretty good last year at Tennessee, he kind of fell off the radar, but unbelievable numbers this year and still just 22 yrs old, I believe. Did you see anything that he changed or added or is he just maturing and pitching smarter?

  • In reply to NoDoubtAboutIt:

    Consistency with his secondary pitches and command. Very rarely did he seem to have all three of his pitches working at the same time last year. He was able to get away with that at lower levels because his command was good, but even that took a step back in 2016. Put it all together this year. Curve and changeup were both there in most starts and he kept all of his pitches out of the middle of the zone for the great majority of the season.

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    In reply to Michael Ernst:

    I presume you still see Tseng as a BOR starter. If so what does that mean, exactly. Are we taking Jason Hammel 2016/John Lackey 2017 where they seem to be able to eat some innings, be dominant for stretches but have stretches where, for everyone's sake it is probably best just to look the other way? Or something else.

    Finally is it simply that he did a better job of pitching this year that resulted in good results or did he actually "improve" something. You have commented several times this year that Tseng doesn't really have an "out" pitch. A pitch that he can go to when he needs to get out of a tough inning/situation. But without that pitch is he just doing a really good job of "mixing things up" or what. Because I would have thought he would be "exposed" in AAA for that flaw. While I realize it is a ways away from the majors it isn't nearly as far away as A+ ball at Myrtle Beach.

    I am not saying that he will become Hendricks--I agree he doesn't likely have THAT level of command and a plus change-up--but might he be a guy who could pitch above his ability?

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