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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: April 25

The Jaguar strikes late in South Bend’s win. Pete Crow-Armstrong returns in Smokies win.

Seattle Mariners v Chicago Cubs
Kevin Alcántara
Photo by Chris Coduto/Getty Images

There were a few promotions before today’s game. Outfielder Christian Franklin was promoted to South Bend from Myrtle Beach. Outfielder Bradlee Beesley went up to Tennessee from South Bend. Joining him is right-handed pitcher Carlos Guzman, who also went from High-A to Double-A. Outfielder Ezequiel Pagan was also activated off the injured list for the first time this year and joins South Bend.

Also tonight was the first game in Iowa that used the automatic ball-strike system a.k.a robot umps.

Smokies shortstop Luis Vazquez was named Southern League Player of the Week.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs were battered by the Louisville Bats (Reds), 9-4.

Starter Javier Assad got the loss after giving up three runs on three hits over 3.1 innings. One of the three runs was unearned. Assad walked three and struck out two.

Shortstop Sergio Alcántara hit a two-run triple in the seventh inning. He then scored on a Dom Nuñez single. Alcántara was 1 for 3 with a walk.

Nuñez went 2 for 4.

DH Yonathan Perlaza was 2 for 3 with a walk and a run scored.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies defenestrated the Birmingham Barons (White Sox), 6-1.

Daniel Palencia started today on regular rest, after leaving his last start with the trainers. He was hitting 101 miles per hour in the first inning before settling into the 97-to-99 range after that. Palencia did not allow a hit or a run over 3.1 innings. He did walk three batters and struck out three batters.

Walker Powell relieved Palencia and got the win because Palencia didn’t go five. He allowed one run on four hits over 3.2 innings. Powell gave up the one run on a home run in the fifth inning by Taylor Snyder. Powell struck out five and walked no one.

Bailey Horn pitched the rest of the way and collected a two-inning save. Horn gave up neither a run nor a hit. He did walk two while striking out five.

Catcher Pablo Aliendo hit a solo home run in the second inning for the first run of the game. It was Aliendo’s second home run this year. He was 2 for 5.

In his first Double-A at-bat, left fielder Bradlee Beesley went back-to-back with Aliendo to make it 2-0. It was Beesley’s second home run this year, counting his one with South Bend. Beesley was 2 for 4 with a stolen base.

In the ninth inning, second baseman Chase Strumpf connected with the bases empty for this third home run this year. Strumpf went 2 for 4 with a double and a walk.

Center fielder Pete Crow-Armstrong returned after a week absence and doubled to lead off the game. Crow-Armstrong went 2 for 5 with a stolen base. He scored one run.

Right fielder Owen Caissie was 2 for 4 with a walk. He scored once and drove one run in.

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs extinguished the Peoria Chiefs (Cardinals), 3-2 in ten innings.

Richard Gallardo started and allowed one run on three hits over five innings. He struck out three and walked one.

Chase Watkins and Adam Laskey kept South Bend in the game with two scoreless innings each. Watkins allowed one hit, walked no one and struck out three. Laskey gave up two hits, walked one and struck out one.

Sheldon Reed threw the top of the tenth and allowed the automatic runner to score after a sac bunt and a wild pitch. His final line was one unearned run on no hits and no walks. Reed had no strikeouts.

South Bend was trailing 1-0 heading into the bottom of the ninth when center fielder Kevin Alcántara tied the game with his second home run of the year. Then in the tenth inning, with the bases loaded, two-out and the Cubs trailing 2-1, Alcántara hit a walk-off two-run single. Alcántara was 2 for 5.

DH Haydn McGeary was 1 for 3 with a double.

Here’s Alcántara’s home run and walk-off single.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans were bitten by the Charleston RiverDogs (Rays), 5-2.

Starter Michael Arias allowed one run on three hits over three innings. He struck out four and walked no one.

Yovanny Cabrera got the loss in relief. Cabrera also gave up one run on three hits over three innings. Cabrera struck out four and walked one.

Left fiedler Andy Garriola hit a solo home run in the second inning, his third on the year. Garriola was 1 for 4.

Right fielder Jefferson Encarnacion got the Birds a run closer with a solo home run in the top of the ninth. It was Encarnacion’s first home run since 2019 in the Dominican Summer League. Encarnacion was 1 for 2 with two walks.

Second baseman Pedro Ramirez was 2 for 3 with a double.