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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: July 3

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The Smokies, Pelicans and South Bend rode strong pitching to wins. Eugene got strong pitching too, but lost.

Alex Lange
Alex Lange
Larry Kave/Myrtle Beach Pelicans

Congratulations to Victor Caratini, who was your choice for the Cubs Minor League Player of the Month. Let’s all hope this is the last time he wins this award. You still have time to vote for the Minor League Pitcher of the Month.

However, Caratini was a late scratch from tonight’s game and was not seen in the clubhouse before or after the game. All we know is that he has not been traded, nor has he gone “Tommy La Stella.” So he’s either hurt or he’s coming to Chicago. Or someone in Des Moines isn’t being truthful.

Also, Tommy Birch of the Des Moines Register reports that the Cubs will sign RHP Casey Coleman to a minor league deal. Coleman pitched for the Cubs from 2010 to 2012.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs lost their sixth-straight game to the Memphis Redbirds (Cardinals), 7-5.

Eddie Butler made a rehab start and it did not go well. He gave up one run in the first inning and three more in the second, including a two-run home run. Butler’s final line was four runs on five hits in just 1.1 innings. Butler walked two and struck out one. It took him 51 pitches (31 strikes) to get just four outs.

Trevor Clifton took over for Butler in the second inning and got the loss. Clifton allowed three runs on seven hits over 6.2 innings, so he didn’t pitch poorly. However, all three runs scored on two home runs: a solo shot in the fifth and a two-run home run in the seventh inning. Clifton struck out four and walked one.

First baseman Bijan Rademacher was 3 for 4 with an RBI and two runs scored.

Left fielder Mark Zagunis went 2 for 3 with a walk and one run scored.

Third baseman Jason Vosler went 2 for 3 with a walk. He scored once.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies burnt the Chattanooga Lookouts (Twins), 5-3. It was their fourth-straight win and it moves their record in the second half to 8-4.

Thomas Hatch turned in the definition of a “quality start”: three runs over six innings. Hatch allowed seven hits. He walked two and struck out eight. Hatch hit one batter.

The win went to Zach Hedges, who pitched the final three innings without allowing a run and only one hit. He walked one and struck out one.

First baseman Yasiel Balaguert had a big night, hitting two two-run doubles for four total RBI. He was 3 for 4.

Shortstop Zack Short went 3 for 4 and scored on both of Balaguert’s doubles.

Second baseman Trent Giambrone went 3 for 4 with a double and a stolen base. It was Giambrone’s 18th stolen base of the season already. He had 13 steals total in his first two seasons in the minors.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans shut out the Potomac Nationals, 3-0.

Alex Lange didn’t give up a hit until the fifth inning and only allowed two hits total in six innings. Lange struck out four and walked one.

Jose Paulino and Jhon Romero finished out the shutout. Paulino went two innings and loaded the bases with two outs in the seventh inning on two singles and a hit batsman. But he got a soft comebacker to the mound to end the threat.

Romero got his sixth save. The only baserunner he allowed reached on an error. He struck out two.

The Pelicans only had five hits tonight and only one single after the fourth inning. But their pitching made the 3-0 lead after three stand up.

Second baseman Andruw Monasterio was 1 for 2 and was hit by a pitch. He tripled in the second inning and scored the first run of the game on a Kevonte Mitchell sacrifice fly. Mitchell was 0 for 2 with an RBI groundout for two total RBI.

After being shut out in back-to-back games last week against Buies Creek, the Pelicans have now held the P-Nats scoreless over the last 21 innings.

Highlights:

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs ran the Bowling Green Hot Rods (Rays) off the road, 6-3.

Another strong start for Ricky Tyler Thomas, who gave up a two-run home run in the second inning and not much else. Thomas gave up two runs on four hits over five innings. He struck out eight and walked no one.

The win went to Yapson Gomez, who pitched the final three innings without allowing a run. He gave up two hits and didn’t walk or strike anyone out.

South Bend took the lead with a four-run seventh inning, capped off by an RBI single by Jared Young. Young went 2 for 3 with a double and a sac fly for two total RBI. He also stole a base.

Second baseman Christian Donahue was 2 for 3 with a walk and an RBI double in the seventh inning. Donahue scored once.

Center fielder Zach Davis was 2 for 5 with two runs scored and one RBI. Davis had one steal.

DH Michael Cruz went 2 for 4 with a double. He scored twice.

Eugene Emeralds

The Eugene Emeralds were shut out by the Everett AquaSox (Mariners), 1-0.

Ryan Williams had a very good start after two bad ones, giving up just one run on five hits over six innings. That still got him the loss. Williams gave up five hits, including a solo home run in the fifth inning that was the only run of the game. Williams struck out three and did not walk anyone.

Shortstop Christopher Morel was 2 for 4.

AZL Cubs

Cubs 1 beat the Royals, 7-0.

Justin Steele pitched his first game since Tommy John surgery. He threw three scoreless innings, striking out three and walking just one and giving up two hits.

Cubs 2 were losing to the Brewers, 4-2 in the 8th inning.