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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: May 8

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Iowa blows a big lead, but the Smokies and South Bend win.

Victor Caratini
John Arguello

Smokies C/1B Ian Rice was named Southern League Player of the Week.

Good luck in San Diego, Matt. All I can say about Justin Hancock, the pitcher that the Cubs got for Szczur, is that he’s probably just organizational depth.

Probably. Hancock was actually a solid starting pitching prospect in the Padres system as recently as 2015, but he suffered a shoulder injury that cost him almost all of 2016. He has not pitched well this season either. Shoulder injuries are a bitch. But before the injury, he was a guy who threw 92-95 mph with a good changeup. His curveball was below-average and he had trouble with left-handed hitters. If he recovers to his 2014-15 form, there might be something there. But for now, he’s just minor league depth.

Iowa Cubs

The Memphis Redbirds scored 13 runs over the final three innings, including eight runs in the ninth, to clobber the Iowa Cubs, 15-9.

Seth Frankoff looked good in his start tonight. Frankoff really only made one mistake: a two-run home run in the second inning to Paul DeJong. But he finished the night having allowed just the two runs on two hits over six innings. Frankoff struck out seven and walked just one.

David Rollins, on the other hand, did not look good. Rollins pitched the eighth inning and he gave up two runs in that inning. He then started the ninth inning, faced six batters and retired none of them. All six of those runners would score. The final line on Rollins was 1+ innings, allowing eight runs on six hits, a walk and two hit batsmen. Two of those hits were home runs to Patrick Wisdom. Rollins struck out one.

Ian Happ hit a three-run home run in the third inning, his ninth of the season. Happ also hit a two-run double for five total RBI on the night. He was 2 for 5.

Catcher Victor Caratini went back-to-back with Happ in the third. It was his third home run of the year. Caratini was 4 for 5 with a double and three RBI.

Third baseman Jeimer Candelario was 3 for 5 with an RBI triple in the eighth. Candelario also scored once. Candy now sports a .340 batting average on the season.

Shortstop Chesny Young was 3 for 5 and he scored three times.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies routed the Jackson Generals (Diamondbacks), 8-2.

Jen-Ho Tseng started this game and improved his record to 3-0 after allowing two runs over six innings. Like Frankoff for Iowa, Tseng’s only runs allowed came on a two-run home run in the second inning. Tseng allowed four hits, he struck out seven and walked nobody.

Tseng was also 2 for 3 with a double and a run scored at the plate.

Second baseman David Bote got the Smokies off to a 1-0 lead with a solo home run in the top of the first. It was Bote’s fourth home run this year. Bote also had an RBI double in the third inning. He was 2 for 5 and scored twice.

Third baseman Jason Vosler was 3 for 5 with an RBI. Center fielder Jacob Hannemann was 2 for 5 with a double. He had one RBI and one run scored.

Every Smokie in the starting lineup had at least one hit. Including the pitcher, who had two.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

Off-day.

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs smoked the Burlington Bees (Angels), 7-5.

Tyson Miller started and got the win, although he did give up five runs over 5.2 innings. One of the five runs was unearned. Miller allowed six hits. He struck out three and walked no one.

Jared Cheek pitched the ninth and got the save. He walked the first batter he faced, but he then erased him in a double play and got another groundout to end the game.

Shortstop Zack Short was a perfect 2 for 2 with a triple and three walks tonight. (OK, not perfect. He was picked off first once and caught stealing once.) Short scored twice and had two RBI.

Right fielder Brandon Cummins was 0 for 1 with two walks and a sac fly. He also scored twice.