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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: April 20

Big innings lead to big wins. Trevor Clifton outduels a top prospect.

Trevor Clifton
John Arguello

Dan Vogelbach hit a grand slam for Tacoma tonight. You’re still a legend around here, Dan.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs were iced by the New Orleans Baby Cakes (Marlins), 7-3.

Williams Perez got his second loss in as many starts as the Baby Cakes jumped on him for six runs on seven hits over just four innings. One of the six runs was unearned. Perez walked two (one intentional) and struck out four.

Both catcher Victor Caratini and right fielder Todd Glaesmann were 2 for 4 with a double. Caratini did score one run.

Ian Happ went 0 for 4 and is now 0 for his last 12. It doesn’t mean anything, but neither did his hot streak to start the season.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies swept a doubleheader from the Birmingham Barons (White Sox), 4-0 and 10-8.

The first game saw a face-off between Smokies starter Trevor Clifton and top White Sox pitching prospect Michael Kopech and his 100 mph fastball. But it was Clifton who came out on top with five scoreless innings. Clifton gave up five hits and walked two while striking out three.

Third baseman Andrew Ely was 1 for 2 with a double and a walk in game one. He scored two of the Smokies four runs.

The Barons hadn’t scored a run off of the Smokies in the first three games of this series and they didn’t score in the first four innings of game two tonight either. Starter Daniel Corcino pitched 2.2 innings without allowing a hit. He did walk two and he struck out one.

Between games one and two, the Smokies were awarded their World Series rings, which went to the coaches and front office staff, as well as one player, reliever Gerardo Concepcion. In game two, Concepcion got the win despite allowing two runs on two hits over 2.1 innings. The two runs came on a two-run home run by catcher Brett Austin in the fifth. Concepcion struck out one and walked one.

The Barons got back into this game after scoring five runs in the sixth inning of reliever Jhondaniel Medina. But David Berg ended the game in a non-save situation.

Third baseman Jason Vosler hit a bases-loaded triple in the second inning. Vosler was 2 for 4 with the three RBI. He also scored twice.

Shortstop Carlos Penalver was 3 for 4 with one run scored and one RBI.

First baseman Yasiel Balaguert went 2 for 4 with three RBI and a run scored. Right fielder Jeffrey Baez was 2 for 4 with two RBI and a run scored. Catcher Erick Castillo was 2 for 4 with no RBI and a run scored.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans fowled off the Down East Wood Ducks (Rangers), 11-7.

Casey Bloomquist started this game for the Pelicans but he only lasted 2.2 innings. Bloomquist allowed four runs on seven hits. He walked two and struck out two.

Tommy Thorpe kept the Pelicans in the game by putting out the two-on, two-out threat in the third. He ended up pitching 2.1 innings and getting the win. Thorpe allowed one run on one hit, one walk and one hit batsman. Thorpe struck out two.

The save went to James Norwood, who gave up a run on three hits and two walks in two innings. Norwood struck out one

The Pelicans hit three home runs tonight in their first game in Kinston since 2011. First baseman Matt Rose homered in the second inning to give the Pelicans an early 1-0 lead. It was Rose’s fourth home run of the year. Rose was 2 for 4 and scored three times.

Right fielder Eddy Martinez hit his second home run in three games when he hit a three-run home run to cap off a six-run fifth inning. Martinez was 1 for 5.

Finally, third baseman Jesse Hodges connected for a two-run blast in the seventh, his first of the year. Hodges went 2 for 4 with a walk and he scored twice.

Catcher Tyler Pearson was 2 for 4 with a double. He was also hit by a pitch to lead off that six-run fifth. Pearson scored once and had one run batted in.

Left fielder Robert Garcia was 2 for 3 with a walk and one RBI.

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs scored six-runs in the second inning and slew the Dayton Dragons (Reds), 8-3.

Starter Manuel Rondon took the win after pitching five innings and allowing just two runs on three hits, one of which was a solo home run in the first inning. Rondon struck out six and walked one.

Shortstop Isaac Paredes went 2 for 4 with a double and an RBI.

Right fielder Chris Pieters was 2 for 3 with a walk and two RBI. Pieters also scored once and stole a base.