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Cubs Minor League Wrap -- May 22

In case anyone was still wondering: Josh Vitters is good.

The "mystery" of Jake Fox's catching has been solved. Both Iowa catchers, Chris Robinson and Mark Johnson, have been dealing with injuries. Neither was available to catch on either of the days Fox did. It was an emergency catcher situation, not a "showcasing" for a trade situation. Fox was back at first tonight.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs beat the Fresno Grizzlies, 3-2.

Kevin Hart got the start tonight and he pitched four good innings, allowing only one run on one hit. Hart walked one and struck out three. Hart was also 2 for 2 with a double.

He was relieved by Vince Perkins, who improved his record to 3-0. Perkins allowed one run on two hits. Perkins walked one and struck out two.

The save went to Blake Parker who threw a perfect ninth. He struck out two Grizzlies.

The losing pitcher for the Grizzlies was Matt Kinney, which I mention only because my mom used to know his mom.

Left fielder Jason Dubois was 2 for 4 with two doubles and an RBI.

Tennessee Smokies

The Smokies dropped a double-header to Birmingham Barons, 3-2 in eight innings and 6-1.

In the first game, starter Hung-Wen Chen had a great start. Chen pitched six shutout innings, allowing only four hits and a walk. Chen fanned three.

He was let down by his bullpen, as Brian Schlitter blew the save when he gave up a two-run home run in the top of the ninth. Schlitter allowed two runs on two hits and a walk over one inning. He struck out one.

Alex Maestri got the loss. He allowed a run in the one inning he pitched. Maestri gave up one hit, walked no one and struck out two.

Catcher Welington Castillo hit his third home run of the year in the first game. Castillo was 1 for 3.

In the second game, Jesse Estrada got the start after having been sent down from Iowa. Estrada didn't pitch any better in AA, as he got shelled for four runs in 3.2 innings. Estrada allowed seven hits and walked one. One of the runs was unearned. He struck out one.

The day Paul Sullivan gives John Gaub a nice write-up in the Chicago Tribune, he gives up two solo home runs in the one inning of relief he pitched tonight. Gaub did strike out two.

Catcher Steve Clevenger was 2 for 3 with a double. Left fielder Ty Wright went 2 for 3.

Daytona Cubs

You know that Southwest Airlines commercial where the pretend that it's always sunny in Florida and that a single cloud makes for a bad day? What the heck are they talking about? It rains a ton in Florida! Just ask the Daytona Cubs. They've got time since they couldn't play again tonight.

Just as an aside, major league teams east of Denver live in mortal fear of having their high-A team in the Cal League because it's so far away. I simply don't understand that. Do they realize that it almost never rains here after April? Your prospects won't be sitting on their butts in the Cal League.

Peoria Chiefs

The Chiefs wiped out against the West Michigan Whitecaps, 14-4.

Starter Alberto Cabrera picked up the loss tonight by allowing five runs in 3.2 innings. Two of the runs were unearned. Cabrera gave up eight hits, walked one, hit two batters and didn't strike anyone out.

Reliever Erik Hamren had a terrible night. He was charged with allowing seven runs in only a third of an inning.

DH Josh Vitters only had one hit again tonight, but it was his ninth home run of the year and his sixth in seven games. It was a solo home run.

Center fielder Kyler Burke also hit a solo home run. It was his fourth. Burke was also 1 for 4.