Congratulations to Zach Hedges, who won your vote for Cubs Minor League Pitcher of the Month with over 3000 votes! All of you Zach Hedges fans, be sure to stick around all season next year!
The minor league regular season ends tomorrow, but we do have three teams continuing on in the playoffs, so the fun doesn’t end tomorrow.
Drew Rucinski has been a punching bag around here this season and with a loss today, he would have tied the Iowa Cubs record with 16 losses in one season. But he really saved his best game for last. Rucinski had a perfect game going into the fifth inning and got his seventh win after allowing just one run on three hits over 7.2 innings. Rucinski walked one and struck out eight. Rucinski also had an RBI triple in the second inning. Bravo, Drew. Bravo.
First baseman Bijan Rademacher was 2 for 4 with an RBI double in the first inning. Shortstop Munenori Kawasaki was 2 for 4 and scored once.
Right fielder John Andreoli was 1 for 2 with an RBI double in the fourth inning that scored Kawasaki. Andreoli walked three times and stole two bases. He also scored once.
The Tennessee Smokies burnt the Montgomery Biscuits (Rays), 12-4.
Starter Michael Wagner pitched 3.1 innings and allowed three runs on four hits. Wagner walked four and struck out two.
Stephen Perakslis got the win because Wagner didn’t go five innings. Perakslis allowed one run on two hits (the one run coming on a solo home run) over 3.2 innings. Perakslis struck out two and walked no one.
The Smokies won this one with a ten-run fourth inning in which Tennessee sent 14 batters to the plate. Right fielder Kelly Dugan was 3 for 5 with an RBI double and an RBI single in the fourth inning. Dugan also scored once that inning.
Shortstop Daniel Lockhart was 3 for 5 with two doubles and three RBI. He also scored in the fourth.
Second baseman Stephen Bruno went 3 for 5 and scored once.
Left fielder Chesny Young went 3 for 6 with a double and two RBI. He also scored once. Young is now batting .303 on the season, giving him a 5 point lead over Pensacola’s Sebastian Elizalde in the Southern League batting title with one game to go.
Myrtle Beach Pelicans
The Myrtle Beach Pelicans tabled the Potomac Nationals, 11-4.
Starter James Pugliese got the win after pitching 5.2 innings and allowing four runs on six hits. Two of the four runs were unearned. Pugliese walked two and struck out three.
First baseman Yasiel Balaguert hit a two-run home run as part of a six-run first inning for the Pelicans. Two innings later, Balaguert hit a two-run single, giving him four on the night and 96 on the season, which is a new Pelicans team record. Balaguert was 4 for 5 with a walk and a double. The home run was his 19th of the season. Balaguert scored three times.
Left fielder Charcer Burks and center fielder Donnie Dewees were both 3 for 6 with a double, one RBI and one run scored.
Right fielder Daniel Spingola was 2 for 4 with a double and a walk. Spingola had three RBI and he scored once.
South Bend Cubs
The South Bend Cubs slew the Dayton Dragons (Reds), 3-2.
Justin Steele pitched the first six innings and allowed two runs, one earned, on five hits. He struck out five and walked none.
Pedro Araujo threw the next two innings and got the win. He gave up three hits but no walks and no runs. Araujo struck out three.
Dillon Maples pitched a perfect ninth inning for his ninth save. He struck out one.
Catcher P.J. Higgins hit a two-run single in the eighth inning to give South Bend their first lead of the game. He was 2 for 4.
Second baseman Carlos Sepulveda was 2 for 3 and scored on the Higgins single.
The Eugene Emeralds couldn’t dance with the Hillsboro Hops (Diamondbacks), 7-6.
Starter Tyson Miller allowed three runs on five hits in four innings. Miller struck out two and walked no one.
The Ems tied the game up 6-6 in the top of the ninth, but Jed Carter allowed a one-out double in the bottom of the ninth and then took the loss when the runner scored all the way from second on a passed ball. The run was, of course, unearned.
Shortstop Zack Short would have been the hero had the Ems won, as he hit a two-run double in the top of the ninth to tie the game, as well as a two-run single in the fourth. Short was 2 for 4 with the 4 RBI.
Third baseman Wladimir Galindo was 2 for 5 with a double and a two-run home run in the third inning, his ninth of the season.