Cubs Minor League Wrap: July 11

Alberto Cabrera - David Banks-US PRESSWIRE

The Smokies and Daytona got strong pitching performances from top prospects to stay in first place. Iowa is victimized by an old acquaintance. The Hawks and Cougars are struggling to score. A top prospect pitched in Arizona for the first time in 2013.

I know this doesn't mean a lot, but the top three Cubs farm teams are all in first place.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs were ionized by the Albuquerque Isotopes (Dodgers), 4-1.

Barret Loux started and took the loss. He allowed four runs on six hits over only 4.1 innings. He walked four and struck out three.

The only Iowa run scored when first baseman Brad Nelson tripled and scored on a Junior Lake sac fly in the seventh inning. Nelson was 1 for 4.

To add insult to injury, Ian Stewart was 2 for 3 with a home run and a walk for the 'Topes.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies outmaneuvered the Jackson Generals (Mariners), 4-1.

Alberto Cabrera improved his record to 9-3 with seven strong innings, allowing only one run on three hits. In reality, it was one run on one hit, a solo home run in the fifth inning. The other two hits didn't play a role in scoring any runs. Cabrera walked one and struck out three.

Zach Rosscup allowed a leadoff walk in the ninth, but then retired the next three batters for his third save. That was the only inning he pitched. Rosscup fanned two Generals.

Second baseman Arismendy Alcantara was 3 for 4 with a walk and a stolen base. He had two RBI and scored once.

Third baseman Jonathan Mota was 2 for 3 with a triple and a walk. He scored twice.

Shortstop Javier Baez snapped his 0 for 20 streak with a single in the seventh inning. He was 1 for 5.

Daytona Cubs

The Daytona Cubs tranquilized the Lakeland Flying Tigers, 2-1.

Pierce Johnson got his second win in Daytona with six innings of work. Johnson allowed one hit on five hits and a walk. He struck out four.

Austin Reed went the rest of the way for a three-inning save. He gave up two hits. He did not issue a walk and he struck out three. It was Reed's second save.

DH Taiwan Easterling doubled and scored the go-ahead run in the seventh inning on a single by catcher Taylor Davis. Easterling was 2 for 4 and Davis went 2 for 3 with a walk.

Kane County Cougars

The Kane County Cougars were grounded by the South Bend Silver Hawks (Diamondbacks), 6-1.

Starter Brian Smith allowed five runs on eleven hits in only five innings. He did only walk one and he struck out one.

Center fielder Albert Almora continues to shine in Kane County despite all the losses. Tonight he was 2 for 5 with a double and a run scored.

Third baseman Jeimer Candelario was 2 for 4.

Boise Hawks

The Boise Hawks were shut out by the Vancouver Canadians (Blue Jays), 4-0.

Rob Zastryzny (perhaps in deference to him having been born in Canada) started the game, but only pitched one inning as he continues to build up his arm strength. Zastryzny allowed one hit but no runs. He struck out one but didn't walk anyone.

James Pugliese took over in the second inning and took the loss. He allowed four runs, two earned, on five hits over four innings. But it was his own error that led to the two unearned runs, so you know how I feel about that. Pugliese walked two and struck out three. He also hit Dickie Thon Jr. with a pitch, which brings back some horrifying memories. However, Thon was fine.

Left fielder Trevor Gretzky was 2 for 3 with a double. He's also been the focus of dozens of stories throughout Canada, including on the Blue Jays pre-game show. It was his best game of the year.

Catcher Cael Brockmeyer was 2 for 3.

And Kris Bryant can't get to Boise soon enough.

AZL Cubs

Beat the Padres, 6-2.

Juan Paniagua threw his first three innings on US soil tonight in Arizona. He gave up two hits but no runs. He struck out four and didn't walk anyone.

Josh Vitters was 0 for 2 with a walk in a rehab appearance.

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