Iowa 3, Nashville 2 (Michael)
- A thrilling two out, two run rally in the bottom of the 9th capped a come from behind victory for Iowa (17-16) and put them over the .500 mark for the first time this season. A Dan Vogelbach walk after the first two hitters were retired triggered the rally. Arismendy Alcantara would pinch run and advance to third when the throw attempting to catch him stealing second skipped into CF. A walk to Taylor Davis put runners on the corners setting the stage for Albert Almora (2-4, 2B, 3B, 2 RBI). He drove a pitch into the LF corner, clearing the bases, and securing the win.
- Ryan Williams went a season high 8 innings in his previous start and followed that up today with a season high 7 strikeouts over 6+ innings of work. His numbers have improved in conjuction with an improvement to his command in recent starts. Williams walked just 18 batters and surrendered just 2 HRs in over a 140 innings last season, but has already walked 12 and given up 3 HRs in just 38 innings to start this year, however he has walked just 3 in his last 3 starts.
- The I-Cubs offense was able to get little going against Oakland prospect Daniel Mengden in the early going. The red hot Mengden entered having given up just 2 runs in his four AA starts and no runs in his previous two AAA starts. He shut down the I-Cubs for the first 6 innings, surrendering just an Albert Almora triple.
- Willson Contreras finally got to him in the 7th. His solo HR to lead off the inning kicked the Iowa comeback into motion.
- Gerardo Concepcion was rewarded for his excellent work in Tennessee with a promotion to Iowa and he picked up right where he had left off. He had not given up a run in 10 games (17.2 IP) at the AA level. He inherited two runners from Williams with no outs in the 7th and quickly struck out the side and then retired the side in order in the 8th. If the Cubs are looking for the best internal option as lefty for the pen Concepcion appears to be the best option right now.
- Carl Edwards Jr. pitched a perfect 9th to earn the win.
Tennessee 12, Montgomery 5 (Michael)
- Tennessee came ready to hit (and walk) tonight. After getting two runners on with no out in the 1st without scoring, they made sure to not come up empty handed in the same situation in the 2nd. In all, the first 5 Smokies hitters of the inning would reach. A walk, a single, two doubles, and a triple gave them a 4-0. The big hits in the inning were a run scoring double by Carlos Penalver and a two run triple by Jacob Hannemann. It was just the beginning.
- Tennessee would score in seven of the final eight innings. Every Tennessee starter reached base at least twice. They collected 13 hits, including 9 for extra bases, 12 walks and one HBP.
- David Freitas walked, doubled twice and homered. He scored 3 times and drove in 2.
- Penalver stuffed the box score as he walked twice, doubled twice, scored twice, drove in two and stole his first base of the season.
- Making another start in place of the injured Jen-Ho Tseng, Brad Markey took gave up just one earned run (2 overall) in 4 innings. As a starter Markey works in the 88-91 range with his fastball and compliments it with his above average curve and occasional change.
- Starling Peralta worked three scoreless innings of relief to earn the victory.
- Erick Leal had his good command today, throwing 67 of 86 pitches for strikes and not walking a batter. He went 7.2 innings, allowing 3 runs, 2 earned, while striking out 3. Leal is 4-2 with a 3.94 ERA on the season.
- Jose Rosario continued his strong comeback season with a scoreless frame (1K, 1BB), lowering his ERA to 2.08.
- The Pelicans jumped on Frederick early, scoring 2 runs in each of the first 2 innings. Yasiel Balaguert started the scoring with a 2 run HR in the first, his 4th of the year.
- Charcer Burks repeated the formula in the 2nd with a 2-run HR of his own to score Gioskar Amaya (2 for 3, walk, 2 runs scored). Burks also doubled.
- Gleyber Torres continued his good run with a 3 run HR in the 7th, though it was his only hit of the game. Torres has hit .350 in his last 10 games and .239/.329/.415 on the season. He has struck out just over 26% of the time, which is a concern, but has cut that rate down to 21% over the last 16 games, a span in which he has hit .338 with 3 HRs and a .569 slugging percentage in 70 PAs.
- Jason Vosler doubled twice, walked, and scored.
- Trey Martin went 2 for 4 with a run scored.
- It wasn’t Adbert Alzolay‘s prettiest performance but with the kind of run support he got, he could afford to be less than perfect. Alzolay allowed 2 earned runs in 6 innings, walking 3 and not striking out a batter. It was good enough for his 4th win with no losses. His ERA is at 2.43.
- Casey Bloomquist was brilliant in relief, striking out 7 in 3 perfect innings. Bloomquist isn’t overpowering but uses good command, good movement, and solid secondaries to keep hitters off balance.
- Donnie Dewees sparked the offense with 4 hits, inckuding a double and a triple, and 6 RBI. Dewees also stole his 9th base and has 9 triples and 7 doubles on the season in what has been a dynamic season at the plate. He’s hitting .315/.351/.529 overall.
- PJ Higgins doubled, walked, scored, and drove in 2 runs.
- Jesse Hodges drove in 2 runs.
- Eloy Jimenez raw power hasn’t fully translated quite yet but he did hit his 2nd HR of the season today while also hitting his 11th double and driving in 2. What’s most impressive about Jimenez is his maturing all-fields approach and improving plate discipline, The double was to CF and the HR to RF. The walks aren’t there and he is striking out more than you would like, but Jimenez is getting deeper in counts and the hope is that eventually starts to correct itself, not to mention getting him more pitches he can turn on and drive.
- Tyler Alamo‘s strong season at the plate continued with 3 more hits, 2 runs scored, and an RBI. Alamo is hitting .333 but surprisingly considering his strength and raw power, is slugging just .375 so far. Considering Alamo may end up as a 1B/DH, that will have to improve, though he still has a chance to stick at catcher.
- Sutton Whiting used his good batting eye to draw 3 walks and his good speed to help him score 3 runs.
- Bryant Flete singled twice and scored 3 times.
Notes from the backfields
- Box score from AZ Phil for today’s game can be found here.
- Pedro Silverio was very impressive today, commanding a low 90s fastball and an above average curve. It was interesting to watch as scouts gradually started paying more attention as the game went on. He pitched 3 no-hit innings, striking out 5. Silverio is 21 years old and should start in Eugene.
- Tommy Nance looked sharp today, setting up hitters with his good fastball (92-95 with good plane) and then putting them away with his hard curve. He struck out 5 in 2 innings.
- Wladimir Galindo is one of the hottest hitters down here in AZ, consistently making hard contact this spring, especially in the last week or so. Early on Galindo had shown himself to be very susceptible to breaking balls away, but he is becoming more proficient at taking those pitches the other way. He is hitting .333 with a .462 slugging pct overall, per AZ Phil.
- DJ Wilson is a burner (3.76 to first on a bunt and 4.1 today on an infield ground out) but he also has some pop, but like Galindo, he has been susceptible to breaking stuff away. The Cubs had him working on going the other way a few days ago and today he seems to be applying that lesson well, going that way more often, including a rocket that one-hopped the LF wall today for a triple.
- Alex Bautista has been hitting the ball well of late as well and had two more hard hit balls today, including a double.
Filed under: Daily Cubs Minors Recap