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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: July 28

South Bend and Myrtle Beach are hot—and I don’t mean that literally, although it may be true literally. Two recent top draft picks hit their first home runs.

Brandon Birdsell
Mattie Neretin / USA TODAY NETWORK

I wish this were After Dark so I could play some Judy Garland. I listened to the entire Cubs game on the radio in the car—with the Cardinals broadcasters.

Right-handed pitcher Carlos Guzman was promoted from Tennessee to Iowa. I don’t know if that’s a temporary measure to fill in for Wesneski or a permanent move.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs were blue after losing to the Memphis Redbirds (Cardinals), 5-3.

Nick Neidert started and didn’t pitch poorly, but he still earned the loss. Neidert gave up two runs on three hits over five innings. He struck out four, walked one and hit one batter.

Danis Correa had a rough Triple-A debut. He allowed three runs, two earned, on one hit over just one inning. Correa walked two, hit one batter and struck out one.

Catcher Bryce Windham hit a two-run home run in the top of the seventh inning, his first this year. Windham went 1 for 3 with a walk.

Right fielder Alexander Canario was 2 for 4 with a double.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies were recycled by the Rocket City Trash Pandas (Angels), 8-4.

Kohl Franklin started and got the loss. Franklin surrendered five runs on seven hits—including two home runs—over just four innings. Franklin walked three and struck out six. He also hit a batter.

The Trash Pandas’ starting (and winning) pitcher was Cole Percival, Troy’s son. And I feel even older than I already do.

Third baseman BJ Murray Jr. homered with the bases empty in the sixth inning. It was his 12th of 2023. Murray was 1 for 4.

Right fielder Owen Caissie doubled twice and walked once in a 2 for 3 game. Caissie scored one time.

First baseman Haydn McGeary went 2 for 3 with a walk. Both singles drove in a run, so he had two on the evening.

Center fielder Pete Crow-Armstrong went 1 for 2 with two walks and a steal. He scored once.

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs fired the Peoria Chiefs (Cardinals), 5-1. South Bend has won four-straight over the Chiefs.

Starter Brandon Birdsell allowed one run—a solo home run to lead off the fourth inning. His final line was one run on four hits over 4.1 innings. He walked two and struck out three.

Because Birdsell didn’t last five innings, the win went to Tyler Santana in relief. Santana pitched 3.2 scoreless innings. He allowed two hits. Santana struck out two and did not issue any walks.

Right fielder Ezequiel Pagan went 2 for 4 with a two-run single in the fourth inning. Pagan also scored one time.

Second baseman James Triantos went 2 for 5.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans appropriated the Fredericksburg Nationals, 9-1. And I’m running out of political puns because it was the Birds fifth-straight win and fourth-straight versus the FredNats.

Grant Kipp started and got the win. Kipp pitched five scoreless innings, surrendering just two hits and a walk. Kipp struck out three.

For the second-straight night, shortstop Jefferson Rojas homered, although this one was “just” a solo homer in the fourth inning. Rojas now has four home runs this season. He went 1 for 4 with a walk.

He didn’t start this game, but Ismael Mena hit his second home run of the year with the bases empty in the eighth inning. Mena went 1 for 2.

First baseman Reivaj Garcia was 3 for 6. He scored one run and drove home two.

Outfielder Parker Chavers went 3 for 5 with a double. He scored two times and had one RBI.

ACL Cubs

Beat the Diamondbacks, 10-5.

Both first-round pick Matt Shaw and third-round pick Josh Rivera hit their first professional home runs in this game. They went back-to-back in the second inning.