Riding the Bus: April 30, 2015 (Cubs Minor League Reports)

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THURSDAY • APRIL 30, 2015

South Bend 4-30 Final

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South Bend closed out April this afternoon with a 6-3 victory over West Michigan, the win moved the Cubs to 11-10 on the season.  Erick Leal was solid on the mound, and the Cubs had the bats working just enough to take the matinee.

At the Plate:

  • Gleyber Torres is not performing like an 18 year old in single A, he went 4-for-5 with a double, an RBI, a stolen base, and a run scored.
  • Chesny Young was productive without a hit, he went 0-for-3 with a walk, two RBI’s, and a run scored.
  • Jason Volser had a solid day, he went 2-for-5 with two RBI’s, a double, and a run scored.
  • Justin Marra has struggled at the plate, but he was productive today, he went 2-for-4 with an RBI, and a run scored.
  • Gioskar Amaya, and Rashad Crawford each had one hit in the win.

On the Mound:

  •  I mentioned Erick Leal was good, what else is new?  Leal worked five innings, giving up two runs on six hits while walking one, and striking out four.
  • Ryan McNeil picked up a hold, he worked one inning, giving up one run on two hits.
  • Francisco Carrillo was outstanding today, he worked three scoreless innings to pick up his first save of the year.  Carrillo surrendered only one hit, struck out three over said three innings.

Myrtle Beach 4-30 Final

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Myrtle Beach looked like they had this one wrapped up before Wilmington struck for four runs in the bottom of the 8th to take this one 6-4.

At the Plate:

  • Mark Zagunis had a decent night, he was 1-for-4 with a triple, and an RBI.
  • Jacob Rogers has slowed down, but had a good game, he was 2-for-4 with his fourth double of the season, and a run scored.
  • Trey Martin has had a good start to his high-A career, he was 1-for-4 with a double, and an RBI in the loss.

On the Mound:

  • Daury Torrez is the definition of a pitcher that pitches to contact, he worked six innings, giving up two runs on six hits while walking none, and striking out one.
  • Josh Conway got roughed up in this one, he worked 1.1 innings, giving up three runs on three hits.
  • James Pugliese worked in and out of some trouble, he tossed two-thirds of an inning, giving up one run, unearned, on two hits.

 

Tennessee Smokies 4-30 Final

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The Smokies fell behind early in this one, and couldn’t fight all the way back as they fell to Birmingham 5-3.  Things got interesting late as Tennessee scored three times over the final four innings but their rally fell short.

At the Plate:

On the Mound:

  • Rob Zastryzny got the start but didn’t last very long, he worked one inning, giving up three runs on two hits while walking two, and striking out one.
  • Jeffry Antigua took over and was decent, he worked four innings, giving up two runs on five hits while walking one, and striking out one.
  • Michael Jensen was solid, he tossed two scoreless innings, giving up two hits while striking out two.
  • Starling Peralta was good as well, he worked a scoreless inning to keep the Smokies alive.

Iowa Cubs 4-30 Final

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Giving this Oklahoma City team thirteen innings worth of at bats is probably going to end bad, and it did for Iowa tonight.  The Cubs didn’t have much working offensively as they only pushed across two runs in the loss.

At the Plate:

  • Javier Baez returned to the lineup tonight, that’s definitely a good thing.  Baez was 1-for-6 with a double.
  • Christian Villanueva had a good night, he was 2-for-4 with a dinger, a walk, an RBI, and two runs scored.
  • John Andreoli was solid as well, he went 2-for-5, and is now hitting .261 on the season.

On the Mound:

  • Carlos Pimentel got the start, and was outstanding.  He worked six innings, giving up one run on just one hit while walking two, and striking out three.
  • Yoanner Negrin picked up a blown save tonight, he worked an inning, giving up one run on one hit.
  • Joe Ortiz was solid, he worked two scoreless innings, he surrendered one hit while walking two.
  • Blake Cooper worked a scoreless inning, he has a 2.31 ERA on the season.
  • Andres Santiago has been so good this year, he worked two scoreless innings, giving up two hits while walking three, and striking out two.
  • Michael Wagner took the loss tonight, he worked one inning, giving up two runs on two hits while walking three, and striking out two.

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Brewers @ Cubs – Series Preview (May 1 – May 3, 2015)

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This series worries me, only because the Brewers have been bad all year, and they are bound to start playing some better baseball.  It’s a new test for the Cubs as good teams are immune, usually, from playing down to their competition.  Based on how these teams have played so far you would think that the Cubs would have an easy go of it, that’s why they play the games of course.  The Cubs are coming into this series winners in six of their last ten, and just two games behind the Cardinals for first place in the Central.  Conversely the Brewers have won just three times in their last ten, and are already ten games back of first in the Central.

Broadcast Information:

  • Friday, May 1, 2015 – 1:20 PM CST – CSN Chicago / MLB Network
  • Saturday, May 2, 2015 – 1:20 PM CST – CSN Chicago
  • Sunday, May 3, 2015 – 1:20 PM CST – WGN TV

Pitching Matchups:

Who is Hot:

  • Brewers:  Apparently Adam Lind is making the most of his regular playing time in Milwaukee.  The slugging first baseman is hitting .444 (12-for-27) in his last seven games with two doubles, three dingers, and six RBI’s.
  • Cubs:  It really doesn’t seem like Dexter Fowler has struggled at all this year because of his ability to get on base, but now he is red hot.  Fowler is hitting .450 (9-for-20) over his last five games with one double, two RBI’s, and a walk.

Who is Not:

  • Brewers:  The Brewers have been bitten by the injury bug so they are having to rely on players they normally wouldn’t, one of those guys is Logan Schafer.  Schafer is really struggling as he is hitting .200 (4-for-20) over his last seven games with one walk, and six strikeouts.
  • Cubs:  It seems as though teams have found Jorge Soler‘s swing and miss, it’s the weather.  Of course I’m not blaming the weather on his struggles, but he is cold, literally.  Over his last six games, Soler is hitting .091 (2-for-22) with twelve strikeouts.

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Riding the Bus: April 29, 2015 (Cubs Minor League Reports)

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WEDNESDAY • APRIL 29, 2015

South Bend 4-29 Final

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Jeremy Null was outstanding once again for the South Bend Cubs, unfortunately he didn’t factor in the decision, but his performance went a long way towards a 2-0 victory.

At the Plate:

  • Charcer Burks continued his strong season, he was 1-for-3 with a walk, and a run scored, he is now hitting .328 on the season.
  • Gleyber Torres is awesome, he went 2-for-3 with a triple, two RBI’s, and a walk in the win.
  • Chesny Young was also a part of the attack, he went 1-for-4.
  • Jason Volser had a so-so kind of game, he was 2-for-4 but committed an error, and was caught stealing.

On the Mound:

  • Jeremy Null got the start, and was stellar.  He worked 5.2 scoreless innings, giving up six hits while walking no one, and striking out six.  On the season Null has not allowed any walks (!), and struck out twenty-three.
  • James Farris was solid out of the pen and picked up the win, his second of the year.  Farris worked 2.1 scoreless innings, giving up one hit while walking one, and striking out two.
  • Jordan Minch worked a scoreless ninth inning to pick up his first save of the season.

Tennessee Smokies 4-29 Final

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After a late run to tie things up, the Smokies couldn’t hold Chattanooga off the board the rest of the way, and fell 3-1 this afternoon.

At the Plate:

  • Kyle Schwarber didn’t pound any baseballs into submission, but was 1-for-4 with a double.
  • Willson Contreras was the only offense in this one, he went 1-for-4 with a double, and a run scored.
  • Stephen Bruno continued his hot 2015, he was 2-for-4, he is now hitting .310 on the season.
  • Elliot Soto, and Ryan Dent each had one hit in the loss.

On the Mound:

  • Felix Pena got the start and did everything but win, he worked seven innings, giving up one run on four hits while walking two, and striking out seven.
  • C.J. Edwards was hung with the loss, he worked two innings, giving up two runs on three hits while walking two, and striking out one.

Myrtle Beach 4-29 Final

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Pitching dominated this one, and the Pelicans were able to push across two runs in the 8th to steal it 2-1.  The Pelicans only had four opportunities with runners in scoring position, but they came through when it mattered most.

At the Plate:

On the Mound:

  • Jonathan Martinez has been pretty darn good all year, tonight was no different, he worked six scoreless innings, giving up two hits while striking out two.
  • Ben Well made an appearance out of the pen, and got the win.  He worked one inning, giving up one run on two hits.
  • Gerardo Concepcion was outstanding in picking up his first save of the year.  He worked two scoreless innings, giving up one hit while walking two, and striking out one.

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Cubs GameDay! April 29, 2015 (Lineup, Broadcast Info, Weather)

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First pitch:  7:05 PM CST
TV:  CSN Chicago
Radio:  WBBM NEWSRADIO 780
Weather:  Mostly cloudy, 47 degrees.  20% chance of rain, a passing shower.

Cubs Lineup:

1.  Fowler – CF
2.  Soler – RF
3.  Rizzo – 1B
4.  Bryant – 3B
5.  Montero – C
6.  Castro – SS
7.  Coghlan – LF
8.  Hendricks – SP
9.  Herrera – 2B

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Schwarber’s Blast Leaves the Stadium (VIDEO)

I’m in love with Kyle Schwarber, I don’t really care who knows.  This ball was absolutely demolished, I’m pretty sure it landed, but I can’t prove it.

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Two Out Magic Propels Cubs to Another Win

Cubs Final 4-28

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The Cubs have all of a sudden found some clutch hitting, and that is leading to some exciting baseball, and wins on the Northside.  One night after scoring four times with two outs, the Cubs pushed six across after two outs for good measure.  Going back to Sunday the Cubs have had thirteen two out RBI’s, THIRTEEN.  So it really is not a surprise that the Cubs have won four straight games, clutch is good, clutch is productive.  Travis Wood didn’t need much help in this one as he picked up his second win of the season, he was stellar over seven innings.  The Cubs will go for the sweep tomorrow night against Pittsburgh’s ace, Gerrit Cole.

At the Plate:

  • Dexter Fowler is scorching hot right now, he went 3-for-4 with two RBI’s, and a stolen base.
  • Kris Bryant came up with another big hit tonight, he was 1-for-4 with a walk, a stolen base, and an RBI.
  • Starlin Castro, have a night, he was 3-for-5 with an RBI, a stolen base, and two runs scored.
  • Junior Lake made a splash (heh) in his return, he was 2-for-5 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored.
  • Welington Castillo, Chris Coghlan, and Addison Russell all had one hit in the win.  Russell added an RBI, a walk, and a run scored.

On the Mound:

  • Travis Wood got the start, and picked up his second win of the year.  Wood worked seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits while walking none, and striking out nine.
  • Zac Rosscup and Jason Motte each worked a scoreless inning to secure the win.

Fun fact, the Cubs had five stolen bases on the night, they now have twenty-five on the year, that leads all of baseball.

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Cubs GameDay! April 28, 2015 (Lineup, Broadcast Info, Weather)

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First pitch:  7:05 PM CST
TV:  WPWR 50
Radio:  WBBM NEWSRADIO 780
Weather:  Clear, 49 degrees

Cubs Lineup:

1. Fowler – CF
2. Rizzo – 1B
3. Soler – RF
4. Bryant – 3B
5. Castro – SS
6. Lake – LF
7. Castillo – C
8. Wood – SP
9. Russell – 2B

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(Parental Advisory) Kyle Schwarber Hurts Baseball (VIDEO)

When Kyle Schwarber cracks a dinger, he doesn’t get cheated.  Schwarber destroyed dinger number three last night, and it was a thing of beauty.  Let’s enjoy the moving pictures.

 

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Riding the Bus: April 27, 2015 (Cubs Minor League Reports)

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MONDAY • APRIL 27, 2015

Note:  Iowa game two was postponed.  South Bend, and Myrtle Beach were off tonight.

Iowa Cubs 4-27 Final

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Not a whole lot of punch from Iowa tonight as they were smoked by the Sky Sox 7-0.  Game two of the series was postponed, not a very productive night.

At the Plate:

  • Mike Baxter continued his solid 2015, he was 1-for-2 with a walk, he’s now hitting .350 on the season.
  • Chris Valaika was one of the few Cubs to find success at the plate, he was 2-for-2 with a walk, he was also caught stealing.
  • Christian Villanueva was the only other Cubs player to register a hit, he was 1-for-2 with a double, and a walk.

On the Mound:

  • Tsuyoshi Wada didn’t have much of anything tonight, he worked five innings, giving up seven runs, six earned, on twelve hits while walking one, and striking out one.
  • Armando Rivero was solid, he worked a scoreless inning, surrendering no hits while striking out two.

Tennessee Smokies 4-27 Final

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Tennessee didnt really put muich together in this one as they lost to Chattanooga 5-3.  It was a 4-1 game in the bottom of the seventh were the Smokies were able to push two runs across to cut the deficit to one, that was  as close as they could get in this one.

At the Plate:

  • Kyle Schwarber was outstanding again, he wen 2-for-3 with a walk, a dinger, an RBI, and a run scored.
  • Ryan Dent had a solid game, he went 1-for-4 with a dinger, two RBI’s, and a run scored,

On the Mound:

  • Corey Black got the start and struggled just a bit, he worked five innings, giving up four runs on four hits while walking three, and striking out five.
  • Jeffry Antigua was outstanding, he worked three scoreless innings, giving up one hit while striking out three.
  • Michael Jensen struggled, he worked one inning, giving up one run on one hit while walking three.

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Cubs Win Third Straight Behind Dominant Hammel

Cubs Final 4-27

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Well, that was fast, under two and a half hours roughly.  Jason Hammel was outstanding tonight as he completely shut down the Pirates from the first pitch as the Cubs took the series opener, 4-0.  Hammel went eight shutout innings, and was never really in trouble as he only allowed four base runners, all hits, no walks.  The Cubs got their runs from likely sources, Anthony Rizzo drove in two runs as did Kris Bryant.  All four runs were driven in with two outs, you can’t really measure how important those hits are.  With the shutout win the Cubs have now won three straight, and have improved to 11-7 on the year, mighty impressive.

At the Plate:

  • Dexter Fowler got things going from the lead-off spot again, he was 2-for-3 with a walk, a stolen base, and a run scored.
  • Jorge Soler broke out of his recent slump, he was 2-for-4 with a double, and a run scored.
  • Anthony Rizzo continues to be a machine, he was 2-for-3 with a walk, a double, two RBI’s, and a run scored.
  • Kris Bryant is racking up the RBI’s, he was 2-for-4 with two RBI’s in this one, and he has knocked in nine so far this year.
  • Miguel Montero, Starlin Castro, and Addison Russell all had one hit in the win.

On the Mound:

  • Hammel Time!  Jason Hammel was stellar, he worked eight shutout innings, giving up four hits, he didn’t walk anybody, and struck out seven.
  • Pedro Strop shut the door in an uneventful ninth, he worked a scoreless inning while striking out one.

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