The news of Jorge Soler being promoted from the AZL Cubs to the Peoria Chiefs was exciting news for us, not only were the Cubs moving Soler quickly through the system by skipping Boise, they were moving him to a team that is much closer to us! So we took the opportunity to make the two-hour drive to Beloit, WI to check out the new look Chiefs take on the Snappers on Saturday night. As we always do when we go to games we take a lot of pictures, here are some of the better ones below. We hope that you guys like these as we strive to give you the opportunity to actually see the players that we write about every day, enjoy!
We weren’t the only ones that were excited to see Jorge Soler, as 2,400 people showed up to Pohlman Field in Beloit for this one. Of course it was fireworks night, and a Saturday so I guess that played into it as well. Here are some fans waiting outside the Chiefs locker room.
*** Reminder *** Click on the picture for a full size (better quality)
Soler emerged and quickly made his way through the crowd, escorted by a member of the Chiefs staff. He wasn’t allowed to stop, even if he wanted to, and you can see in the pictures that he commands attention as he is bigger than everyone.
Anticipation was at a fevered pitch before Soler’s first at bat, here is a sequence of pictures leading up to it.
Okay, I promise there are more pictures from the game that are not featuring Soler, we will get to those. The Snappers jumped out in front early against Zach Cates taking a 1-0 lead, that was before Jorge Soler came to the plate with the bases loaded and two-outs in the third inning. He wasted no time blasting the first pitch he saw over the left-center field wall for a grand slam! Here are some pictures leading up to the grand slam.
Just after the grand slam!
Not going to lie, that was totally worth the price of admission, and then some. The blast gave the Chiefs a 4-1 lead and they never looked back, as they ended up winning this one 5-3. Here are some of the better pictures from the rest of the night.
Pin-Chieh Chen walking to the dugout before the first pitch
Paul Hoilman making his way to the field
Dustin Geiger in the box
Twins super prospect Miguel Sano, very good
My man Zeke DeVoss, got to talk to him a bit, really cool guy
Luis Liria was outstanding in relief for the Chiefs, he got the win
It really was a great night all around, we got to talk to some of the Chiefs players we cover, we not only got to see Soler play in a game but we got to see him hit his first professional grand slam, and the Chiefs won. We really hope you enjoy all the pictures and the first hand account of the game. Please feel free to use these pictures for your own personal use, if you do I ask that you please link back to our blog and give us credit for the pictures, thanks so much. If you want to see the full set of pictures head over to our facebook page, and while you are there give us a like!
We are at the game tonight and he just launched one. We have a lot of pics already, check back tonight for a full recap.
Here is the video.
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There has been a lot of movement in the Cubs minor league system today, and I’m sure it will stay busy until the end of the year. The latest news is Pierce Johnson being promoted to Boise! Solid move here as Johnson, who was drafted in the 2012 draft (supplemental pick) has been solid in Arizona and probably belongs in Boise. Congrats to Pierce, give him a follow on Twitter!
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Some very exciting news today as the Cubs have announced that Jorge Soler is being promoted from the AZL Cubs to Peoria! To be honest I’m surprised that the Cubs have moved him straight to Peoria and skipped Boise altogether. That should give you a good idea of what the Cubs think of Soler after seeing him play in just 14 games in Arizona. Soler only hit .241 in 54 at bats, but made his presence felt all over the field. He had two doubles, two home runs, and 10 RBI’s, as well as 13 strikeouts, but walked 6 times and had 8 stolen bases. He has shown enough to make the jump to Peoria, the fact that he did so in such a short time is a very good sign.
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Brooks Raley has been called up to the Cubs to replace Matt Garza in the rotation. Raley, a 24 year old lefty will make his major league debut tomorrow night in San Diego. Raley pitched for both double a Tennessee and triple a Iowa this season. He was 4-8 with a 3.62 ERA at Iowa before getting the call.
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Although nothing has been confirmed by the Cubs, a reliable source miCubs has reported that both Josh Vitters and Brett Jackson are getting called up for the series finale in LA today. We will keep you updated once more is known.
UPDATE 1: Carrie Muskat confirms that both Vitters and Jackson have been called up. Patrick Mooney has also confirmed both promoted.
UPDATE 2: Jeff Baker has been traded to the Detroit Tigers and Tony Campana has been sent to Iowa to make room for Vitters and Jackson.
CONFIRMED: Josh Vitters and Brett Jackson are in Los Angeles for the Cubs, they have been called up! We will have more throughout the day.
-Mark & George
There were whispers last night and today it was confirmed, the Cubs have promoted Javy Baez to Daytona. Its an aggressive move but he has earned it by hitting. 336 with 12 HR, and 20 stolen bases at low A Peoria. Congrats Javy!
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It is our goal here at Born on Third to educate Cubs fans on the talent that sits at the minor league level. With the way that Theo Epstein has molded this franchise it’s clear that the goal is to have as much talent as possible come from the draft and the farm system. Wouldn’t you hate to be that one person that has no idea who just got called up to the Cubs? It makes you look stupid, so don’t look stupid, and learn about the future of the Chicago Cubs here. Today we feature Dustin Geiger.
Dustin Geiger is 20-year-old third baseman from Merritt Island, Florida. Geiger was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 24th round (730 overall) of the 2010 MLB first year player draft out of Merritt Island High School (Merritt Island, FL). After getting drafted by the Cubs Geiger signed a deal to start his professional career, in doing so he earned a $150,000 signing bonus.
Geiger jumped right into action making his professional debut on July 10, 2010 with the Cubs Arizona Rookie League team. Dustin struggled out of the gates hitting only .214 in July, in only 12 games however. Not a surprise as most young players coming right out of high school need to take a step back and realize that belong at this level. Geiger started to figure it out the longer he was in Arizona. During a nine game stretch in August Geiger hit safely in seven of those games with a home run and seven RBI’s. It was a glimpse into what Geiger could do with the bat, he finished off August hitting .259 with a home run and 11 RBI’s. It was a solid 2010 for Geiger as he was able to get his feet wet before entering his first off-season as a professional.
2011 began with Geiger in a familiar spot, playing third base for the Cubs AZL team. The results however were much different and that is a good thing. Geiger went nuts in Arizona for the Cubs, he played in 19 games, he hit .342 with two home runs and 20 RBI’s. He also added nine double and two triples for good measure which brought his SLG to .582 and his OPS to .948 on the season. That was all the Cubs organization needed to see as they promoted Geiger to the Peoria Chiefs and Geiger made his single A debut on July 18, 2011. Much like 2010, Geiger struggled with the jump in talent level. Again, not something that is out of the ordinary, especially for a 19-year-old at A ball already. Dustin played the final 43 games for the Chiefs, hitting .227 with a home run and 13 RBI’s.
Solid progress was stunted at the beginning of 2012 as Geiger was sidelined with an injury to start the season. Something that drove Dustin crazy as he missed the first two months of the Peoria Chief’s season. Geiger went through rehab and worked extremely hard to get back into game shape and back to the Chiefs as quickly as possible. From the looks of it, the extra work he got has paid off. Geiger made his 2012 debut with the Chiefs on June 7, 2012, and has spent the entire year with the club. He is starting to make a name for himself, as 2012 featured a 13 game hitting streak in June where he hit .311 with 3 home runs and 14 RBI’s. Geiger struggled in July, but something clicked, the power. Geiger only hit .206 in July, but he hit 8 home runs and drove in 16 runs. All of this led up to Geiger busting out here in August the last couple of days. Over the last two days Geiger is 6-for-9 with three home runs and nine RBI’s including an 8 RBI GAME on August 1st. To date, Geiger is hitting .268 with Peoria, he has 14 home runs and 39 RBI’s, not bad in just 47 games.
The reason I’m excited about Geiger is his ability to adjust and grow within the Cubs system. At every level he has been at he as struggled early, but then adjusted and turned it on. If he can continue to do those things moving forward eventually the struggles will be less and less and the production could be through the roof, like the last two days. I would expect Geiger to finish off 2012 in Peoria and then get a chance to start off 2013 in Daytona. If you want to interact with Dustin follow this link to Dustin’s twitter account. He is a very active user, and talks with fans on a regular basis, so give him a follow. Best of luck the rest of the way Dustin!
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Here is a recap for the month of July for the Cubs minor league system. There are a lot of players who had a good July, but I limited it to a player of the month/pitcher of the month at each level.
AZL Cubs: 21-10 (1st place)
July Record: 14-8
The Cubs had a pretty good month of July to go along with a great start to the season and they are in first place as of today. There were a lot of exciting things happening in Mesa, mainly the debut’s of both Albert Almora and Jorge Soler. There were other exciting debut’s as pitchers Dillon Maples and 2012 draftees Paul Blackburn (56 overall) and Ryan McNeil (3rd round) started there professional careers. Finally Daniel Vogelbach just crushed the ball before being promoted to Boise. He left the Cubs hitting .324 with seven home runs, 12 doubles, and 31 RBIs.
Player of the Month: Ben Carhart
The 22-year old third baseman was drafted in the 35th round of this years draft out of Stetson University. This month he hit a robust .400. with one home run, six doubles, 14 runs scored, and 12 RBIs. He slugged .550 and had an OBP of .486 bringing his OPS to 1.036.
Pitcher of the Month: Carlos Martinez-Pumarino
In his first year in the organization, the 21 year-old pitcher has been very good. This month Martinez-Pulmarino was 1-0 with a 1.15 ERA. He pitched 15.2 innings in six games, all but one out of the bullpen. He struck out 14, allowed only five hits and walked four in July.
Boise Hawks: 5-2 (1st place second half)
July Record: 12-17
Boise was off to a really rough start, but have been hot of late winning six out of their last eight and four in a row. Luckily for them the second half has just started, so as far as the second half goes they are off to a nice start.
Player of the Month: Gioskar Amaya
At only 19-years old the infielder has impressed with the bat thus far at Boise and July was no different. He hit .330 with four home runs, four triples, and three doubles. Amaya knocked in 13 and scored an impressive 24 runs while stealing six bags. He had an OBP of .407 and slugged .567 brining his OPS to .974.
Pitcher of the Month: Tayler Scott
The 20-year old starting pitcher had quite a nice July. He started six games and went 3-0 with a 1.50 ERA. In his 30 innings pitched he gave up 21 hits, walked 14, and struck out 20. Scott was drafted last year in the fifth round out of Notre Dame Prep High School in Scottsdale, AR.
Peoria Chiefs: 15-22 (7th place second half)
July Record: 12-16
July was not the best of months for the Chiefs and they will have some work to do to get back in the playoff picture. Catcher Chadd Krist came up from Boise and has continued to hit and Pin-Chieh Chen has been on quite a tear over the last couple weeks. Peoria will look to have a good August and make up a lot of ground in hopes to get back in the race.
Player of the Month: Javier Baez
Wow did the 2011 first round pick have a great month. The 19-year old shortstop hit .368 with with seven home runs, three triples, and six doubles. Baez drove in 20 runs, scored 21, and stole eight bags. His OPS for the month was 1.076 as he slugged an impressive .679 and had an OBP of .397. It was quite the month for the highly touted Cubs prospect.
Pitcher of the Month: Joseph Zeller
Zeller, 24 pitched well in July going 2-2 with a 1.65 ERA in six appearances, five starts. He pitched 32.2 innings giving up 32 hits, walking seven, and striking out 14. He isn’t a huge strikeout pitcher and he gave up a hit an inning, but it is impressive to see the ERA as low as it was in the month.
Daytona Cubs: 18-21 (5th place second half)
July Record: 12-17
Daytona didn’t have their best month, but there were some highlights to go along with the disappointing record. Matt Szczur was promoted to Tennessee after Jae-Hoon Ha was injured. Szczur had been one of Daytona’s most consistent performers throughout the year and it will take some adjustments for them to get back on track without him. The Cubs will have to make up a lot of ground in August as they sit six games back going into today.
Player of the Month: Ronald Torreyes
At only 19-years old the second baseman is starting to really hit. After a disappointing first couple months Torreyes had a very good June and followed it with a nice July. He hit .333 with one home run, two triples, and seven doubles. He also drove in 18, scored 16, and stole seven bases. Torreyes was brought over in the Sean Marshall deal.
Pitcher of the Month: Matt Loosen
Loosen went 4-1 in six starts in July. He had an ERA of 3.08 throwing 38 innings, giving up 26 hits, walking 13, and striking out 35.
Tennessee Smokies: 17-20 (4th place second half)
July Record: 12-16
A sub .500 record in July wasn’t what the Smokies were looking for as they currently are 5.5 games behind the division leader. The month was highlighted when Matt Szczur was promoted to Tennessee. The reason he was promoted was because of an unfortunate accident when Jae-Hoon Ha got a concussion. The Smokies need to got hot in order to make a run at the division.
Player of the Month: Justin Bour
The 24-year old first baseman has had a good season and July was no different. He hit .337 with four home run and eight double. Bour drove in an impressive 25 runs which brings him to 84 on the season. He slugged .529 and had an OBP of .381 with an OBP of .909. It will be fun to watch Bour’s pursuit of 100 RBIs.
Pitcher of the Month: Eric Jokisch
Jokisch, 23 was 4-1 with a 2.57 ERA in five July starts. In 28 innings pitched he struck out 2o, walked eight, and surrendered 21 hits. We all know the Cubs system is light on arms, but Jokisch has had a pretty good season up to this point.
Iowa Cubs: 42-69 (Last place)
July Record: 8-20
Things don’t get much worse than an 8-20 month, but maybe it is when August is starting and you are 24 games back. It was going to be tough when Rizzo was brought up, but I don’t think anyone was expecting a month like this. There weren’t too many bright spots, but there were some. Josh Vitters had a good month, not great, but good. James Adduci came up from Tennessee and did well in the 18 games he played in compiling and OPS of .999. All Iowa can hope for now is to end the season on a high note.
Player of the Month: Dave Sappelt
The 25-year old outfielder had his best month since coming over from Reds. Sappelt hit .317 in July hitting one home run, one triple, and eight doubles. He scored 16 runs and drove in 12 while stealing eight bases. He got on base at a .368 clip and slugged .442. It was nice to see Sappelt have a good month and my guess is we will see him in Chicago at some point this season.
Pitcher of the Month: Esmailin Caridad
I bet you didn’t expect to hear that name again, but he had quite an impressive month. In 18.2 innings Caridad gave up 14 hits, walked 7, and struck out 22 as his ERA stands at 0.92 for the month of July. if Caridad can continue we might see him again in big leagues.
It wasn’t the best month for the Cubs farm system, but there were some good things as well as some really exciting things. There were a lot of hitters and pitchers who could have been included and narrowing it down to only one per level was tough. Hope you like it.
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It was only a matter of time before this topic was addressed by Dale Sveum and the Cubs front office given the roster turnover the last couple of days. Per Sveum it sounds like the organization will get together on Thursday to discuss the possibility of calling up both Brett Jackson and Josh Vitters this month. Sveum was clear in saying that if they did get called up they would play every day, which is awesome to hear. I for one am excited to see what these guys can do at this level, even if it’s only over the last month and a half. The logical time for a call up would be September when the rosters expand, so it’s news that the organization is discussing this now.
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