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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: August 8

Fernando Kelli
Fernando Kelli
Eugene Emeralds

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs grounded the Las Vegas Aviators (Athletics), 4-3.

Starter Adbert Alzolay was on a strict pitch count and he did not allow a hit over the 2.2 innings he pitched. Unfortunately, he walked four and left two runners on for reliever Craig Brooks, who gave up a three-run home run to the first batter he faced. So Alzolay was charged with two runs. He struck out five.

You may have missed it (I missed it), but the Cubs signed former Rays pitcher Chih-Wei Hu to a minor league contract earlier this week. Hu’s organizational debut was a success as he kept Iowa in this game with three scoreless innings of relief, allowing just one hit. Hu did walk five batters and struck out just one.

Dillon Maples entered the game with one out in the eighth inning and he retired all five batters he faced, two by strikeout. Maples got the win when Iowa scored two runs in the top of the ninth.

Shortstop Addison Russell had an RBI double with two out in the bottom of the eighth inning that scored Phillip Evans. Russell also had a two-out RBI single in the bottom of the fourth. Russell went 2 for 4.

Second baseman Robel Garcia went 3 for 4. He scored one run.

Left fielder Donnie Dewees was 2 for 4 with one RBI and one run scored.

With the win and a loss by Memphis, Iowa now has an 11-game lead over both Memphis and Omaha. Their magic number is now 14 as Iowa tries to win their first division title since 2008.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies were shelled by the BIloxi Shuckers (Brewers), 7-4.

Starting pitcher Luis Lugo surrendered four runs on seven hits over four innings. Lugo gave up a two-run home run to the second batter he faced. Lugo walked two and struck out six.

Jake Stinnett got the loss in relief. Stinnett gave up just one run on four hits over three innings. Stinnett struck out three and walked one.

After Stinnett gave up a triple and an RBI single in the fifth inning, he then walked the next batter to make a two-on, no outs jam. The Smokies then turned a 5-4-3-2 triple play to end the inning.

Third baseman Gioskar Amaya was 2 for 4 with an RBI double. He scored one run.

Here’s that triple play.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans were passed by the Winston-Salem Dash (White Sox), 8-7.

Brendon Little made his first ever start in High-A and it didn’t go very well. Little took the loss after giving up six runs, five earned, on six hits over just 2.2 innings. Little struck out three and walked one.

Ben Zobrist was the DH in this game and he hit a solo home run in the third inning. Zobrist went 1 for 4 with a walk.

Earlier, right fielder Kevonte Mitchell hit a solo home run in the second inning. It was Mitchell’s 12th home run this year. Mitchell went 1 for 4.

Catcher Miguel Amaya got Myrtle Beach back to within a run with a three-run home run in the fifth inning. (But neither team scored again after that.) Amaya went 1 for 2 with two walks. Amaya scored twice and had the three RBI.

First baseman Luke Reynolds hit a two-run double in the bottom of the first inning to give Myrtle Beach a short-lived 2-1 lead. Reynolds went 2 for 5.

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs scored seven runs in the fourth inning and hammered the Lansing Lugnuts (Blue Jays), 8-4.

Zach Mort was promoted back to South Bend before tonight’s game. He started in South Bend for the first time (he was strictly a reliever when he was there earlier this season) and Mort got the win after allowing just two runs on three hits over six innings. One hit was a solo home run. Mort walked two and struck out three.

South Bend pounded out 14 hits tonight and all nine players in the lineup got at least one hit. DH Nelson Maldonado was 3 for 5. He scored one run and had one run batted in.

Catcher Marcus Mastrobuoni did the same thing: 3 for 5 with one run and one RBI.

Second baseman Jake Slaughter went 2 for 4. He also had one run and one RBI.

The win was the 2,129th in the career of South Bend manager Buddy Bailey. That puts him as sixth on the all-time list of wins for a minor league manager.

Eugene Emeralds

The Eugene Emeralds beat the Boise Hawks (Rockies), 9-3.

Ryan Jensen allowed his first earned run since his very first professional start, but also pitched a career-high. 2.1 innings. Jensen allowed one run on four hits. He had some control issues as he walked three and hit one batter. Jensen struck out three.

Bryan King entered the game in the third inning with the bases-loaded and one out and pitched out of the jam with no runs scored. Then he loaded the bases with two outs in the fourth and pitched out of the jam. King went 1.2 innings without allowing a run. He gave up two hits. King walked one and struck out one. It was the first professional win for the 30th-round pick out of McNeese State.

Center fielder Fernando Kelli came a double short of the cycle tonight. Kelli hit his second home run of the season with the bases empty in the second inning. Kelli went 3 for 5 with a triple and the home run. He scored twice.

Right fielder Edmond Americaan hit a solo home run in the seventh inning, also his second of the year. Americaan was 4 for 5 with two runs batted in.

Catcher Caleb Knight went 2 for 5 with a two-run double in the first inning. Knight score two times.

AZL Cubs

Off day.