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Chicago Cubs Minor League Playoff Wrap: September 6

Eugene gets off to a good start. Rookie ball can’t close it out.

Nelson Velazquez
Nelson Velazquez triples in tonight’s game
Steve Sher

Congratulations to AZL Cubs OF Nelson Velazquez and Eugene Emeralds RHP Jose Albertos who the Cubs named as the “official” Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Month.

On to the playoffs.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans were rained out. The best-of-five series between the Pelicans and Down East Wood Ducks has been shortened to a best-of-three series. They will play game one in Kinston tomorrow and a doubleheader (if necessary) in Myrtle Beach on Friday.

Both the Southern League and Florida State League have already cancelled their championship series in advance of Hurricane Irma. There’s a good chance that the Carolina League will do likewise by Friday.

And yes, Willson Contreras is scheduled to make a rehab start in tomorrow’s game.

Eugene Emeralds

The Eugene Emeralds jumped over the Hillsboro Hops (Diamondbacks), 3-2 in game one of their best-of-three playoff series.

Jose Albertos started for Eugene and allowed two runs on five hits over 5.2 innings, including the only home run of the game. Albertos struck out three and walked one.

Elvis Diaz relieved Albertos with a runner on second and two out in the sixth. He got a strikeout and then kept the score close with 1.2 innings of scoreless relief. He allowed one hit, no walks and he struck out three.

The win went to Jake Steffens, who was perfect over the next 1.2 innings. Steffens struck out two.

The Ems faced a rehabbing Randall Delgado to start the game, but they were fortunate he only pitched one inning. Trailing 2-1 with two outs in the seventh inning, Zach Davis singled, scoring Jhonny Bethencourt and tying up the game.

With two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning, Gustavo Polanco hit a soft line drive up the middle, scoring Michael Cruz from third.

Polanco was 2 for 4. Bethencourt was 0 for 2 with two walks and two runs scored. Cruz was 0 for 2 with two walks. Davis was 1 for 4 with a steal.

The series now moves to Hillsboro for game two and game three, if necessary, as the Ems try to repeat as Northwest League Champions.

AZL Cubs

The AZL Cubs were too small for the AZL GIants, 6-5. The best-of-three series is now tied at one game each.

Brailyn Marquez started and allowed four runs on five hits over 3.2 innings. He walked two and struck out four.

Fauris Guerrero took the loss despite not allowing a hit over two innings. The only baserunner he allowed was a walk to lead off the top of the ninth. The Giants bunted the runner over to second, he went to third on a ground out and then scored on an error by first baseman Cam Balego. Guerrero struck out two.

Jose Gutierrez led off the bottom of the first inning with a home run. Gutierrez was 1 for 4 with a walk and two runs scored.

The Cubs took a 5-4 lead in the bottom of the fifth inning when Nelson Velazquez hit a bases-loaded triple. Velazquez was 1 for 4 with a walk.

Here’s some video of Velazquez’s triple, courtesy of @sherfamily

The rookie ball team’s season will end tomorrow, one way or another.