Daily Cubs Minors Recap: Washer hits walk off 3-run blast for his 2nd HR of game; García also goes deep twice; Crow-Armstrong, Quintero, and another stellar Riley Martin outing keep Pelicans in 1st place

Jake Washer (photo by Stephanie Lynn)

Robel García and Jake Washer became the 4th and 5th Cubs farmhands of the week to hit 2 home runs in the same game. The previous players to do it were Jared Young, Nelson Velazquez, and Matt Mervis.

Most of the bats in the system have only begun to wake up this week. The pitching has been on point for most of the season. They are the main reason three of the four Cubs affiliates are above .500:

AAA

Iowa 8, Louisville 4

Game Recap

Robel García got off to a hot start in the first series of the year, driving a bunch of balls into the gap and down the line for doubles, but then hit a bit of a cold streak in the series since then. His bat woke back up yesterday afternoon though. He launched a pair of homers to lead the I-Cubs to an 8-4 victory.

Three of the guys who have been getting it done of late (Ildemaro Vargas, Donnie Dewees, and P.J. Higgins) all stayed hot. That trio combined to reach seven times, score four runs, and knock in three from the middle of the Iowa order.

Robert Gsellman seems to be rounding into form and getting stretched out as a starter in Iowa (67 pitches). He’s mostly been used as a long reliever in the Majors, but he has some experience as a swingman and starter. The Cubs are currently struggling to get innings out of their starters in Chicago. Not sure Gsellman would necessarily solve that issue, as he’d most likely be another 4-5 inning guy, but he could at least offer another piggyback option. I don’t know for certain, but given his previous experience I assume Gsellman was granted an opt out of his MiLB deal (maybe in May?) if he isn’t added to the 40-man roster. It’s definitely a situation to monitor.

Top Performers

  • Robel García: 2-4, 2 HR (1, 2), 2 R, 4 RBI, (.263)
  • Ildemaro Vargas: 2-5, 3B, 2 R, RBI (.293)
  • P.J. Higgins: 2-3, R, RBI, BB (.324)
  • Donnie Dewees: 1-3, R, RBI, BB (.316)
  • Dixon Machado: 1-4, R, BB (.273)
  • Robert Gsellman: 5 IP, 7 H, R, 0 BB, HBP, 3 K (W, 1-0, 0.69)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Ildemaro Vargas has hits in 6 straight games (13-for-28, .464)

AA

Rocket City 8, Tennessee 4

Game Recap

Christopher Morel and Chase Strumpf hit two-run homers to give the Smokies a 4-2 lead while Javier Assad worked five strong innings. But Danis Correa gave up three runs in his first appearance of the season. He hit 100 on the gun, and is a definite candidate for a 40-man roster spot this offseason, but at least for one day it wasn’t enough to help him hold the lead.

Top Performers

  • Javier Assad: 5 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 0 ER, BB, 6 K (1.72)
  • Christopher Morel: 1-4, HR (3), R, 2 RBI (.245)
  • Chase Strumpf: 1-4, HR (3), R, 2 RBI (.182)
  • Nelson Maldonado: 3-4, R (.436)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

High-A

South Bend 5, Beloit 3

Game Recap

A catcher not known for his bat, Jake Washer became an unlikely member of the Cubs two-homer game club this week. His efforts were perhaps the most impactful though. A solo shot by him in the 3rd gave the Cubs the lead. After Beloit pushed across three runs between the 4th and 5th innings Washer doubled and then scored on a Luis Verdugo single in the bottom of the 5th to bring the Cubs within a run.

Then came the 9th. Still down one, Washer stepped up to the plate with two on and promptly ended the game in dramatic fashion:

South Bend got four good innings out of Max Bain and Chris Clarke. It was Bain’s first start of the season after starting out behind in ST and taking a while to ramp up his pitch count.

Top Performers

  • Jake Washer: 3-4, 2B, 2 HR (1, 2), 3 R, 4 RBI (.333)
  • Luis Verdugo: 2-3, 2B, RBI (.289)
  • Fabian Pertuz: 2-4, 2B, R (.298)
  • Max Bain: 4 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 3 K (3.75)
  • Chris Clarke: 4 IP, 5 H, R, 0 ER, BB, 3 K (4.60)
  • Nicholas Padilla: IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, K (W, 1-0)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

trends

Low-A

Myrtle Beach 7, Delmarva 4

Game Recap

I really wish I could see more of what is happening with the Pelicans so far this year, but unfortunately the camera situation in their road games and some technical difficulties during their one homestand thus far has left us with little/poor quality video.

The team is currently riding high in 1st place, and getting exciting contributions on a regular basis from a couple of guys who shined again yesterday.

Pete Crow-Armstrong laced another three hits and stole another bag out of the leadoff spot. And Riley Martin continued his run of utter domination through the few couple of weeks. He punched out another seven batters over three shutout innings out of the Pelicans pen.

Top Performers

  • Malcolm Quintero: 3-4, 2B, R, 2 RBI, BB, CS(1) (.429)
  • Pete Crow-Armstrong: 3-5, 2B, 2 R, SB (7) (.326)
  • James Triantos: 2-5, R, SB (2) (.222)
  • Juan Mora: 1-4, 2 R, RBI, BB (.300)
  • Luis Devers: 4 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K (5.40)
  • Riley Martin: 3 IP, H, 0 R, 0 BB, 7 K (W, 1-0, 0.68)
  • Sheldon Reed: IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K (S, 2, 0.00)

Injuries, Updates, and Trends

Riley Martin has been phenomenal: 4 G, 13.1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 27 K

Comments

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  • In a few weeks I could se a few struggling prospects and some from EXST or Rehab shift around between MB, SB and the EXST/Rookie league. Owen Cassie and Reggie Preciado as two I could see being moved down a level. Eventually Roederer should be headed to SB.

  • I really like Robel Garcia's swing. He makes loud contact when he does make contact. If he can manage to cut the Ks way down, and make a bit more regular contact, he could be a decent DH option, and emergency 2B guy. He logged some time last year with Houston at 3B and SS, but he's never going to be anything other than a stopgap anywhere on the IF.

  • I think Schwindel could be a flip candidate if he has a very good first half. Rivas is a lefty a great hitter and a quality fielder. Especially with Suzuki and Davis being long term righthanded corner outfielders.

    With Schwindel's control (even though I love the guy) he could bring a decent return and for the Cubs he is redundant..

  • In reply to bleachercreature:

    Exactly the way I was thinking. With the expanded playoff picture, it's likely that somebody will need Schwindel's bat for DH or even 1b and may be willing to give up a quality prospect or two. I was also thinking Villar might be a bat that could bring something in return.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    Agreed on both Schwindel and Villar - There are capable guys that can man their defensive positions and can provide some similar (less power for Rivas obviously) offensive output. Wisdom could be as well and for similar reasons if he could only cut down the Ks a bit more to maybe like 30%. I also love Schwindel's and to some extent Wisdom's game, but if they are not long-term solutions, either could have some significant trade value as they have some team control time left.

    If the Cubs are what they appear to be so far in 2022 - a 'maybe' 0.500 team - then cut bait on these guys and continue the restocking of the Farm system.

  • Looks like this home plate umpire is giving Fried, the Tom Glavine strike zone. I hate that. I hope this guy is reprimanded when he gets reviewed. I really don’t think Tom Glavine makes the hall of fame without getting those outside the K zone calls. He got them consistently, like Fried is getting them today.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    I wanted to watch, but since I live in the Braves broadcast area the game was blacked out for me.

  • In reply to Cliff1969:

    That plate umpire last night was the poster boy, for the argument in favor of the automated strike zone. He took the bat out of the hands of a number of our hitters.

  • In reply to cubbustible:

    Was it as fun as watching Kyle Schwarber plot out the strike zone for Angel Hernandez?

  • Lol Cliff, I love when they educate an umpire.

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