Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Adduci extends hitting streak to 19; South Bend goes double crazy; Hodges hits grand slam; Kelli homers and scores on walk-off wild pitch

Jim Adduci (photo by Dylan Heuer)

Jim Adduci (photo by Dylan Heuer)

AAA

Round Rock 8, Iowa 3

Game Recap

Seven unanswered runs off, mostly off starter Colin Rea (L, 8-2, 3.56), doomed Iowa after they got off to a good start in this one. Taylor Davis doubled home Jim Adduci and Robel Garcia in the 2nd to give the Cubs an early lead, which they extended on a Donnie Dewees solo shot in the following inning. But then the

Top Performers

  • Donnie Dewees: 2-4, HR (11), R, RBI, CS (3) (.258)
  • Taylor Davis: 2-4, 2B, 2 RBI (.240)
  • Jim Adduci: 2-4, R (.296)
  • Robel Garcia: 2-4, R (.295)
  • Duane Underwood, Jr: 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, BB, 4 K (5.93)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Jim Adduci (.296/.337/.497) is batting .387 with 11 doubles, 4 homers, 19 runs scored and 20 runs batted in over his 19-game hitting streak. Stretching back a bit further, and he is hitting .398 with 21 runs scored and 21 runs batted in over his last 22 games.

Mark Zagunis (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

Mark Zagunis (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

Mark Zagunis (.328/.394/.531) has not allowed his demotion to get him down. He has reached safely in all 17 of his games in Iowa this season.

In a surprise to me, LHRP Tim Collins cleared waivers after being DFA to make room for Tony Barnette (who has now been recalled to Chicago, with Rowan Wick getting optioned to Iowa). Collins has been a solid depth option in both Iowa and Chicago this season. I can't believe a team didn't claim him.

Since moving into a relief role, Duane Underwood, Jr. has seen the expected uptick in velocity and has also managed to improve his results. After posting a 6.46 ERA as a starter in 47.1 innings, Underwood has a 3.48 ERA in 7 games (10.1 IP, 10 H, 4 R, 6 BB, 14 K) as a reliever.

AA

Montgomery 9, Tennessee 7

Game Recap

A Jesse Hodges grand slam, as part of a five-run 3rd inning put the Smokies in the drivers seat with a 6-2 lead, but a an error by Hodges in the next inning allowed the leadoff man to reach, which helped trigger a five-run inning of Montgomery's own. Tennessee did manage to tie the game at 7-7 in the bottom of the 5th, but their offense couldn't capitalize over the final five innings, eventually dropping the game 9-7.

Top Performers

  • Jesse Hodges: 3-4, HR (2), R, 4 RBI (.208)
  • Connor Myers: 1-3, R, BB, 2 SB (8, 9) (.244)
  • Charcer Burks: 2-3, 2 R, 2 BB (.227)
  • Gioskar Amaya: 2-3, 2B, R, RBI (.241)
  • Michael Rucker: 2.2 IP, H, 0 R, 2 BB, K (5.63)
  • Oscar De La Cruz: 2 IP, H, R, 2 BB, 2 K (4.21)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Oscar De La Cruz

Oscar De La Cruz

It appears Oscar De La Cruz (62 IP, 48 H, 24 ER, 28 BB, 60 K, 3.48 ERA between A+/AA this year) may be transitioning to the pen full-time. He made a one inning appearance coming out of the All-Star break which could have been chalked up to re-arranging the rotation, but now with a second appearance, it looks like the move may be long-term one.

Durability has long been a concern with the big right-hander, and this was a move I expected this season coming off his suspension at the beginning of the year, but after they stretched him out in spring training it seemed he would get one more year as a starter. Because De La Cruz's 77.1 IP last year were a career high, and he was already approaching that figure this year, it is possible this is just a move to control his innings in the 2nd half and keep open the possibility of moving him back to the rotation next season.

Advanced A

Fayetteville 3, Myrtle Beach 2

Game Recap

Another day, another loss. After falling behind 3-1, a home run by Cam Balego in the 6th pulled Myrtle Beach (21-50) within a run, but they'd be unable to tie it in the final innings to avoid the sweep.

Top Performers

  • Cam Balego: 2-3, HR (7), R, RBI (.258)
  • Jimmy Herron: 1-3, R (.209)
  • Alexander Vargas: 6 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 BB, 4 K (L, 1-2, 3.14)
  • Garrett Kelly: 2 IP, H, 0 R, 2 BB, 2 K (3.21)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Cam Balego (.258/.358/.412) is batting .304 with 2 home runs during a 5-game hitting streak.

Since seeing his batting average slip to .196 on 6/14, Jimmy Herron (.209/.317/.332) has picked up the pace, with 6 hits and 3 walks in his last 5 games.

A

South Bend 11, Eugene 10

Game Recap

Jonathan Sierra (photo by Rikk Carlson)

Jonathan Sierra (photo by Rikk Carlson)

It is tough to imagine dropping a game when your team rips ten doubles and scores 11 runs, but South Bend, but after the Cubs built up a 9-1 lead through four innings Bowling Green stormed back to draw within one at 9-8 in the top of the 8th. Thankfully, the Cubs would add a pair of insurance runs in the bottom of the frame as Andy Weber and Jonathan Sierra each added their second doubles of the game. The Cubs would require each of those runs, as the Hot Rods once again proved they wouldn't go quietly. They scored twice in the 9th off closer Ethan Roberts before he finally shut the door.

Top Performers

  • Jonathan Sierra: 3-4, 2 2B, 2 R, 3 RBI, BB (.246)
  • Cole Roederer: 3-5, 2 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI (.227)
  • Andy Weber: 3-5, 2 2B, 2 R, RBI (.265)
  • Levi Jordan: 3-5, 2 2B, R, RBI (.220)
  • Tyler Durna: 3-5, 2 2B, 2 R, 2 RBI (.295)
  • Eric Gonzalez: 1-4, 2 RBI (.227)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Andy Weber (photo by Rikk Carlson)

Andy Weber (photo by Rikk Carlson)

Jonathan Sierra (.246/.291/.338), Cole Roederer (.227/.292/.354), Andy Weber (.265/.311/.383) and Levi Jordan (.220/.300/.296) each finished with 3 hits, including 2 doubles in the game. Tyler Durna (.295/.367/.423) also managed 3 hits, but only a paltry 1 double. Christopher Morel (.247/.290/.407) added one as well. Weber is batting .325 over his last 10 games. Durna has been even better, hitting at a .436 clip over the same time span.

South Bend lead the MWL in doubles with a combined 134 on the year.

A-

Eugene 4, Tri-City 3

Game Recap

Unlike in South Bend, there wasn't much offense generated by either squad in Eugene last night. What little Tri-City managed came off free passes issued by the Emeralds staff (9 walks in total), while most of the Eugene offense came courtesy of Fernando Kelli. His two-run homer tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the 5th, and then his one-out single in the 9th allowed him to steal second, move to third on a groundout, then eventually score on a wild pitch.

Top Performers

  • Fernando Kelli: 3-4, HR (1), 2 R, 2 RBI, SAC, SB (3) (.333)
  • Didier Vargas: 3 IP, 2 H, R, 3 BB, 3 K (5.68)
  • Fauris Guerrero: 3 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 4 K (0.00)
  • Ruben Reyes: IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 0 K (W, 1-0, 0.00)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Fernando Kelli (photo by Jared Ravich courtesy of MiLB.com)

Fernando Kelli (photo by Jared Ravich courtesy of MiLB.com)

He got off to a bit of a slow start in the opening series for Eugene, but Fernando Kelli (.333/.368/.611) has become their hottest hitter of late. His 3-hit day extended his hitting streak to 6 games in which he is batting .416.

Walks have been an issue (5 in 5 IP) by Fauris Guerrrero has proven difficult to hit in his first 2 outings, as opponents are batting just .125 and have struck out 5 times. The undersized righty has not moved quickly, but has put up impressive numbers each of the last 4 seasons in the DSL and AZL. He has a career 2.42 ERA in 145 innings.

DSL

In some tragic news, a veteran Cubs Domincan Area Scout was killed in an automobile accident in Santo Domingo Saturday. Over the years, Carlos Reyes signed prominent Cubs prospects Eloy Jimenez, Jonathan Sierra, Arismendy Alcantara, among many others. AZ Phil has a bit more on this story over at TCR.

Comments

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  • Great write up per usual! Just curious since I wasn't able to find anything- do you happen to know anything about Bryan Hudson? Seems like he's been injured for awhile and this was his potential possible "putting it all together" season.

    Can't wait to see Strumpf start!

  • In reply to Cub4life:

    Sorry, don't know what Hudson's injury is. News on Minor League injuries is usually non-existent unless the player talks about it in an interview or social media.

  • I'm hoping de la Cruz is just on what amounts to an innings restriction, rather than a full time switch to the pen; prayerfully he can finish this year strong, and see if he can have a great offseason and make a play for the rotation in Iowa next year............

  • Is it too early to give Robel Garcia a shot at the MLB roster? Descalso could develop a hangnail or "turf toe" and go to the IL. Should the Cubs give Garcia a shot before the trade deadline to see what he's capable of? He's not getting any younger...

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    Sure couldn't hurt, but I have some concerns. His numbers are good but they're in the PCL so you have to scale them back some and his BABIP is a likely unsustainable .400. Still, Descalso is absolutely awful so why not give him a shot? As far as an IL stint though I think if they could have done that they would have already. I think he needs to be DFAd and that's a rough financial decision.

  • In reply to TC154:

    I'm wondering if the reason we haven't done anything with Delasco, is the fact that he's a left handed bat; also seems why the CarGo experiment seems to have drug on so long. Is the fact that these players are lefties, really give them the extra leash to figure things out, when we have viable options that are playing well, but righties?

  • In reply to Treebeard:

    I think being lefty is a big part of it, but both Descalso and Gonzalez have some proven performance in their career. It's a mystery why Gonzalez dropped off so badly from his Rockies days. Descalso had made some power adjustments to his swing and was supposed to be an adequate bat (not tremendous) that can play multiple positions and provide some veteran leadership. He may be providing the last two but hasn't been successful hitting. If both of those guys came around, wow - what a boost it would give the team for the 2nd half. I'm not optimistic, however.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    Cubs have not shown any willingness to use a phantom IL.

    I would not mind taking a look at Garcia, but it does require someone be dropped for the 40-man to do so, and then room on the 25-man made as well. Releasing Descalso is really the only path I see for that, and while we as fans are frustrated, we are not in the locker room to see what Descalso contributes and we are not the ones forced to explain to our boss why we are paying a guy 5M to play for someone else when he has played less than half a season here.

  • Other than his 3 bouncer up the middle the other day, I don't recall him even making contact in his other at bats in the last few appearances. Wait til a late Friday after everyone has gone home and DFA the guy. It will at least save $500K for next year and half of that for this year. Made another bad signing. Move on.

  • In reply to veteran:

    Well, if you DFA Descalso it would be about $3.5 mil you eat (I had heard it was higher but someone here corrected me and was right once I researched it myself). That's a lot to eat if he even has a chance at last years form, but I think it's become increasingly obvious that without a lot more laying time, which would be foolish to give him, he can't. I would expect him gone as soon as they decide on a replacement.

  • In reply to TC154:

    It is $5M guaranteed in total that Descalso is due (1.5M in 2019, 2.5M in 2020, plus 1M buyout in 2021). Only offset is if he signs a MLB contract with another club, in which case the league minimum is paid by the other team (and subtracted from the total owed by the Cubs). So, if he plays in the Majors for another team this year and next the Cubs might save about a million of the 5M.

  • In reply to Michael Ernst:

    And with the way he is currently playing there is no guarantee another team would roster Descalso.

  • I really would love to see Robel Garcia with the Cubs. The misery of suffering through 4A players like Zagunis and Adduci does give me pause, but Garcia’s “Natural” story as well Tony Barnette’s odyssey intrigue me more. I also think the Dillon Maples story has more chapters to play out. That slider, or whatever it is, has a Major League future.
    I think the Seth Lugo overuse will probably finally cost Mickey Calloway his Mets job, but it is symptomatic of widespread bullpen overuse. I think Maddon, Theo, Jed etc. get this and we will see a continual procession of relievers via DesMoines. I also think we will see the supposed need for lefties be supplanted by the realization that good stuff from a righty is preferred to mushy curves from Mike Montgomery.

    Regarding Descalso and Cargo, I think Descalso may reignite, but probably not with the Cubs. Cargo really appears to be rocking chair ready. But as much as the Cubs need more hitting, they really need a burner like Straw for Houston or Terrence Gore. The Cubs baserunning is mediocre at best. A sprinter could win them a couple games which could mean a playoff berth. Replace Descalso with intelligent speed. Where is Billy Hamilton?

  • In reply to Swarf:

    Hamilton is a pinch runner at best for the cubs, he can’t get on base. Fairly expensive bench piece.

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