I thought you’d like to see this little video the Smokies made about Jordan Wicks.
Here is a look at what made Jordan Wicks your Southern League Pitcher of the Week! @jordan_wicks99 @BroadcasterMick #BestYearEver #NextStartsHere #Cubs #potw #JohnWick pic.twitter.com/0GkaqpMtax— Tennessee Smokies (@smokiesbaseball) May 3, 2023
The Iowa Cubs were sunk by the Columbus Clippers (Guardians), 10-2.
There was good news and bad news in Kyle Hendricks’ rehab start. On the good news, he retired the side in order on 11 pitches in the first inning, striking out two. On the bad side, he gave up a double, two walks and a grand slam in the second inning. (To be fair, while the double was hit hard, I think a better left fielder than Mike Tauchman makes the catch. The grand slam, however, was hammered.)
So the final line on Hendricks was four runs on two hits over 2.2 innings. He walked three and struck out three.
Iowa had three hits in this game. They scored one run in the first inning after Christopher Morel walked, Miles Mastrobuoni walked and then after a Matt Mervis strikeout, David Bote walked. With the bases loaded and one out, Jake Slaughter singled home Morel. But that’s all the runs they managed to get out of that rally.
Slaughter was 1 for 3 with a walk. Morel was 1 for 4 with a walk.
Here’s a big pitch from Hendricks to end the first inning.
Kyle Hendricks ends a scoreless first inning against Columbus with this strikeout. pic.twitter.com/SN8oWlMucp— Iowa Cubs (@IowaCubs) May 3, 2023
The Tennessee Smokies grounded the Rocket City Trash Pandas (Angels), 7-6.
Walker Powell made his first start of the season (he had four previous relief appearances) and allowed three runs on four hits over four innings. One of the three runs was unearned. Powell walked two and struck out four.
The win went to Chris Kachmar, who breezed through two innings of scoreless relief, striking out five and allowing just one hit.
Hunter Bigge had some troubles putting this game away. He entered the game in the ninth with a four-run lead and gave up a three-run home run with one out. But he settled down after that and retired the next two batters to end the game in non-save situation.
DH Haydn McGeary hit his first Double-A home run with the bases empty in the second inning. McGeary went 1 for 3 with two walks. It was his fourth home run overall this year.
In the fourth inning, right fielder Owen Caissie cranked his fifth home run of the season, also with the bases empty.
Left fielder Nelson Maldonado went 2 for 3 with a walk and he was hit by a pitch. He hit a two-run single in the fifth inning and then scored later that inning on a single by first baseman BJ Murray Jr.
Murray was 2 for 4 with a walk and two total RBI. He also scored one run.
McGeary’s home run.
Haydn McGeary’s first HR at Double-A! pic.twitter.com/rG43qK2HbB— Aldo Soto (@AldoSoto21) May 3, 2023
Caissie’s home run.
Fifth homer of the season for @Cubs No. 12 prospect Owen Caissie, who is now slashing .300/.398/.614 for @smokiesbaseball this season. pic.twitter.com/xPRuTbg63V— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) May 3, 2023
South Bend Cubs
The South Bend Cubs were creamed by the Cedar Rapids Kernels (Twins), 9-6.
Brandon Birdsell continued to dominate in the early going, throwing five scoreless innings and giving up just three hits. He struck out five and walked two. Over his first five professional starts, Birdsell has allowed just one run over 20.2 innings.
The bullpen, however, wasn’t as strong. After Frankie Scalzo Jr. allowed three runs over three innings (including back-to-back solo home runs in the sixth) Didier Vargas got rocked for six runs in the top of the ninth inning to take the loss. Vargas only made it through two-thirds of an inning. He allowed four hits and walked two. He struck out one.
Second baseman Scott McKeon went 3 for 5 with a game-tying two-run triple in the seventh. McKeon scored once.
Left fielder Jacob Wetzel was 2 for 4. He drove in the first South Bend run of the game with a single in the seventh and he scored twice.
Third baseman Fabian Pertuz was 2 for 5 with an RBI single in the ninth.
Myrtle Beach Pelicans
The Myrtle Beach Pelicans were hypnotized by the Columbia Fireflies (Royals), 10-8.
Cade Horton gave up his first professional home run in this game, a two-run shot by Erick Peña in the fourth inning. But otherwise, he was his same dominating Cade Horton. Horton pitched four innings and allowed two runs on five hits. He walked one and struck out seven. Horton threw 65 pitches and 44 were strikes.
The Pelicans broke out to a 6-0 lead after three innings in this game and then allowed four runs in the eighth inning and three more in the ninth to lose. Brandon Noriega allowed those four runs in the eighth inning. Noriega’s line was four runs on three hits over 2.1 innings. He struck out five and walked two. Noriega also hit a batter.
Yovanny Cabrera gave up the tying run in the bottom of the ninth on a wild pitch and then gave up a two-run, walk-off home run once again to Erick Peña, his second blast of the game. Cabrera’s final line was three runs on four hits over one inning. He struck out five and walked two.
Catcher Miguel Pabon was 2 for 4 with a two-run single and an RBI double for three total runs batted in. He also stole home when third baseman Rafael Morel got picked off first but got in a rundown long enough for Pabon to score from third. Pabon scored two total runs.
Morel was 2 for 4 with an RBI double.
First baseman Felix Stevens was 2 for 4 with a double and a walk. He scored twice and drove home one.
DH Reivaj Garcia was 2 for 5 with a double. He scored one run and drove home one.
Left fielder Andy Garriola was 2 for 5 with a stolen base. He scored two runs.