Cubs in the Off-Season Leagues - Week 6

Good morning! In the final week of the Arizona Fall League, Mesa made one last push for a playoff spot. Meanwhile, several players stayed hot in Mexico and the Dominican Republic. For more information about all of the Cubs prospects in off-season leagues, take a look inside.

Arizona Fall League

Mesa Solar Sox

In the final week of the season, Mesa did not let up late as they buried Peoria 8-2 on Sunday. First baseman Jared Young was a part of the late surge, as he was 1-for-3 and was hit by a pitch, stole a base, and scored 2 runs. Designated Hitter Zack Short went 0-for-4 in the victory. Mesa 8 - Peoria 2

The Solar Sox strung two victories in a row on Monday as they held Surprise to 3 hits in a 4-0 win. Catcher Miguel Amaya batted clean-up and blasted a double, going 1-for-4 with a run scored. Zack Short was back at shortstop and also scored a run as he was 1-for-3 with a walk. Erich Uelmen came on in relief of starter Kirk McCarty in the sixth and tossed 2 scoreless innings, only giving up 2 walks. Mesa 4 - Surprise 0

Mesa is turning up the heat late as they won their fourth straight game on Wednesday, beating Surprise 2-0. Zack Short also continued his steady play as he went 1-for-3 while playing flawlessly at shortstop. Entering in the seventh, Jordan Minch remained rock steady as he gave up 2 hits and struck out 2 in 2 scoreless innings. Mesa 2 - Surprise 0

Keegan Thompson (Photo by Stephanie Lynn)

Keegan Thompson (Photo by Stephanie Lynn)

In a strange twist on Thursday, the Solar Sox neither extended nor ended their win streak, as their contest with Salt River was declared a 0-0 tie after nine innings. Keegan Thompson saved his best start of the Fall for last, as he fanned 4 and gave up 2 hits in 4 scoreless innings. Scott Effross relieved Thompson and continued to hold the Rafters, throwing 2 perfect innings and striking out a batter. Zack Short remained the most potent in the line-up, as the shortstop was 2-for-4 with a double. First baseman Jared Young went 1-for-3 with a double and a walk, while catcher Miguel Amaya was 0-for-4. Mesa 0 - Salt River 0

As all teams in the Arizona Fall League ended the regular season with a 7-inning game on Friday, Mesa ended on a high note by defeating Scottsdale 3-0 for their fifth straight win. Designated Hitter Zack Short finished with a 0-for-2 game, but he also drew a walk and scored a run. First baseman Jared Young was 0-for-2. The Solar Sox completed their run going 15-13-1 and finishing second to Salt River. Mesa 3 - Scottsdale 0, 7 innings

Dominican Winter League

Aguilas Cibaenas

On Tuesday, Cibaenas was able to hold the powerful Escogido offense to only one inning of production. But that one inning was enough as the Aguilas lost 4-2. Robel Garcia lined up at second base and scored one of the two runs, as he was 0-for-3 with a walk. Escogido 4 - Cibaenas 2

The Aguilas put up a good fight against Escogido on Wednesday but just came up short in losing 5-4. Second baseman Robel Garcia had a good game as he was 1-for-3 with a walk and a run scored. Escogido 5 - Cibaenas 4

Friday saw the Eagles fight back from a 3-2 deficit in the third inning to double-up Orientales 6-3. Robel Garcia remained at second base for Cibaenas and was 1-for-4 with a double and an RBI in the win. Cibaenas 6 - Orientales 3

Cibaenas closed out the week by finally being able to get the better of Escogido, as they won 6-3 on Saturday. Second baseman Robel Garcia got things started for the Eagles, as he took former Cubs prospect Austin Bibens-Dirkx deep for a solo home run in the second as he was 1-for-3 with 2 runs scored for the night. Cibaenas 6 - Escogido 3

Gigantes del Cibao

Two big innings for Cibaenas on Sunday were the deciding factor as the Giants beat Orientales 8-5. Donnie Dewees was back in centerfield and went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored batting out of the eighth slot. Cibao 8 - Orientales 5

On Friday, the Giants were able to rally in the top of the eighth to best powerful Escogido 3-2. Centerfielder Donnie Dewees turned in a great defensive play in the second inning, doubling the Leones’ Julio Rodriguez off of second base to quell a scoring threat. Dewees ignited the rally by drawing a walk to lead off the eighth as he would go 1-for-4 with a walk and a run scored in the game. Cibao 3 - Escogido 2

While the Gigantes pounded out 13 hits on Saturday, they were nota bale to take advantage of the them as they lost 10-4 to Este. Left fielder Donnie Dewees did his best to rev-up the offense from the lead-off spot, as he was 3-for-5 with an RBI in the loss. Este 10 - Cibao 4

Estrellas Orientales

Oscar De La Cruz (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

Oscar De La Cruz (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

On Saturday, Orientales was not able to get things in sync against Licey in losing 4-1. The Stars’ pitching was unable to keep the Tigers off the board, with the exception of Oscar De La Cruz. Taking the mound in the ninth with one out, De La Cruz recorded 2 out including striking out the final batter. Licey 4 - Orientales 1

Mexican Pacific League

Aguilas de Mexicali

It was a tense start to the week for Mexicali, as it took some ninth inning heroics to defeat Navojoa 1-0 on Sunday. Third baseman Phillip Evans singled in the game’s only with one out in the ninth as part of a 1-for-4 game. Mexicali 1 - Navojoa 0

Wednesday saw the Aguilas make a ninth inning rally only to come up short as they lost to Jalisco 7-6. Phillip Evans was at third base again, but did not figure in the scoring as he went 1-for-4 in the loss. Jalisco 7 - Mexicali 6

The Eagles were unable to hold off Los Mochis on Friday, as 5 runs in the final 3 innings lead to a 6-2 loss for Mexicali. Third baseman Phillip Evans scored one of the Aguilas’ two runs as he went 1-for-3. Los Mochis 6 - Mexicali 2

The runs came late on Saturday as Mexicali was unable to hold off Los Mochis in losing 5-1. Phillip Evans drove in the only run for the Aguilas as the third baseman was 1-for-3 with a double. Los Mochis 5 - Mexicali 1

Mayos de Navojoa

Navojoa started the week out by spoiling a great pitching effort in a 1-0 loss to Mexicali on Sunday. Chih-Wei Hu scattered 4 hits over 7 innings, as he also rung up 4 batters and held the Aguilas without a run. Navojoa 0 - Mexicali 1

The Mayos were unable to generate any offense on Saturday as they were shut out by Culiacan 7-0. Chih-Wei Hu started for Navojoa and allowed 3 earned runs on 7 hits and 2 walks while striking out 4 in 5 innings. Culiacan 7 - Mexicali 0

Yaquis de Obregon

Obregon got back on the winning track on Tuesday as they took advantage of Guasave’s bullpen in a 6-2 victory. Carlos Sepulveda remained at second base and was 0-for-3 with a walk and a run scored in the game. Obregon 6 - Guasave 2

Thursday saw the Yaquis unable to overcome an early lead by Guasave and fail to capitalize on chances in the eighth and ninth innings, losing 2-0. Second baseman Carlos Sepulveda was part of the opportunity in the eighth, as his single would put him in scoring position with 2 outs as he was 1-for-3. Guasave 2 - Obregon 0

On Friday, the Tribe began hit by tallying 5 runs in the top of the first and then holding on for a 7-6 win over Mazatlan. Carlos Sepulveda continued to hold down second base and was 1-for-4 in the victory. Obregon 7 - Mazatlan 6




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  • Thanks for the write-up, Tom. While we wait for other teams to finish the World Series, there isn't a lot of Cubs news to talk about. I still have mixed feelings about Zack Short. I could see a David Bote-type role for him on the Cubs if his hitting improves. I hope the Cubs changes in development personnel didn't come too late for him.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    I suppose right now he's in line to backup javy at short to begin the year so nico can be polished.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    Cliff, after viewing how Short was used this Fall, I believe he will be a starting shortstop in Major League Baseball. Just probably not for the Cubs.

    Mesa was managed by Mike Rabelo, a Double-A manager in the Tigers organization. Rabelo had his choice of 4 players to line up at shortstop, including Isaac Parades, a player he managed this season. Short played one less game at shortstop for Mesa than the other 3 players combined. Only 2 players played in more games for Mesa than Short, Jo Adell and Greg Diechmann, the league MVP.

    Short responded by fielding .984 at shortstop (and had one errorless game at second base). This is coming off a 2018 in which Short was named the best defensive shortstop in the Southern League.

    It would have been very interesting to see how Short would have fared over a full season in the hitter-friendly PCL with the MLB baseball. While his walk rate was projected to be near his career 16%, his projected home run total would have been at least 22.

    As far as comparing Short to Bote, there is very little comparison. Bote does not project as a regular at any defensive position, let alone having the borderline elite potential of Short. Short is also more athletic and has better speed. I also believe Short has more natural power, not relying as much on backspin and launch angle as Bote.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    I would say as the 524 pick in the 2016 draft Zack has developed just fine. I don’t see anything that cubs have done to slow his development. By mixing it up and coming up with a new name for things doesn’t mean he will develop faster or be developed better.

  • Does anyone know if there any off season renovations planned for Wrigley? I thought I read somewhere that in order to host an All Star game, Wrigley would have to do major renovations on the press boxes.

  • In reply to MilwaukeeRoad:

    I think I remember reading that those were going to be remodeled this year, but I don't remember the source. I'd be fine with removing the disco-ball from the Cubs clubhouse.

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    Tom, thank you for all the work you do. It will an interesting off-season for the Cubs, maybe one of the most important in a long time.

  • In reply to Jonathan Friedman:

    You're welcome!

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