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Chicago Cubs Minor League Wrap: August 9

Iowa blasts Omaha. The Smokies and Pelicans relied more on pitching in their wins.

Scottsdale Scorpions v Mesa Solar Sox
Luis Vazquez
Photo by Chris Bernacchi/Diamond Images via Getty Images

I feel like I should get overtime or at least a tip jar for the Iowa game.

Iowa Cubs

The Iowa Cubs brought the fury of the heavens down on the Omaha Storm Chasers (Royals), 20-1.

Shane Greene’s second appearance with Iowa went even better than the first as he pitched three innings without allowing a hit or a run. Greene walked one and struck out three.

Luke Little was just as good and got the win because Greene didn’t go five innings. Little pitched two scoreless innings and the only baserunner he allowed came on a hit batsman.

It was raining home runs at Werner Park in Nebraska as the I-Cubs hit seven of them in the rout. (Omaha hit one off of Keegan Thompson, one of just four hits the Storm Chasers had tonight.)

Iowa jumped out to an 8-0 lead in the top of the first inning. All eight runs came on homers. First, catcher PJ HIggins hit a two-run home run, his ninth on the year and fourth with the Cubs. HIggins went 1 for 5 with two walks—one of which came with the bases loaded, giving him three RBI on the night.

First baseman Matt Mervis went back-to-back with Higgins, giving him 13 minor league home runs on the season. Mervis went 1 for 5 with a walk.

Later in the first inning, shortstop Luis Vazquez crushed a three-run home run. In the top of the ninth, Vazquez added a second three-run home run, giving him five on the year. Vazquez went 3 for 5 with a walk. He had the six RBI and he scored four times.

Right fielder Yonathan Perlaza had led off the game with a double, but he came to bat a second time in the first inning and crushed a two-run home run, his 18th on the season. Perlaza went 3 for 5.

Second baseman Chase Strumpf had no home runs in the first inning, although he did score on Perlaza’s tater. But he made up for that by clubbing a three-run home run in the sixth inning and a grand slam in the eighth. Strumpf now has nine Iowa home runs and 16 overall. Strumpf was 3 for 5 with two walks. He scored three times and had the seven RBI.

Left fielder Alexander Canario went 3 for 5 with a double. Canario scored four runs.

Center fielder Pete Crow-Armstrong was 2 for 4 with two walks. He scored four times and drove in one.

I should point out that none of the home runs were hit off position players. Strumpf’s single in the ninth was the only one of Iowa’s 17 hits off a position player.

Here are the four home runs for Vazquez and Strumpf.

Higgins’ home run.

Mervis goes back-to-back.

Perlaza joins the party.

Tennessee Smokies

The Tennessee Smokies served the Biloxi Shuckers (Brewers) on a half-shell, 4-2.

Kohl Franklin dominated the Shuckers for five innings and got the win. He allowed no runs and just one hit. Franklin walked two and struck out three.

Blake Whitney retired the side in order in the ninth for the save. He struck out two.

Shortstop Levi Jordan went 2 for 4 with a double, a two-run single in the fifth inning and a sacrifice fly.

Catcher Pablo Aliendo was 2 for 5.

Shuckers starter Jacob Misiorowski (a second-round pick in 2022) had some major control issues and hit Smokies leadoff hitter Bradlee Beesley in the helmet with a 96 mph fastball to lead off the game. Beesley never went down, but he left the game after being examined by the trainer.

Misiorowski hit two other batters and walked four (while striking out nine) in the 3.2 innings he pitched.

South Bend Cubs

The South Bend Cubs were sunk by the Lake County Captains (Guardians), 10-4.

Starter Tyler Santana took the loss after he allowed two runs on four hits over three innings. Santana did strike out five while walking just one.

Every Cubs pitcher allowed at least one run, but Michael McAvene, in his first game since being put in the Development List, really had a rough day. McAvene pitched just one inning and he got rocked for five runs on three hits and three walks. McAvene had one strikeout.

Shortstop Matt Shaw was 2 for 5 and scored once.

Right fielder Jacob Wetzel went 2 for 5.

Myrtle Beach Pelicans

The Myrtle Beach Pelicans carved up the Fayetteville Woodpeckers (Astros), 4-2.

Jackson Ferris started and gave up just one run on two hits. The one run came on a leadoff home run in the second inning. Ferris walked three and struck out three.

Erian Rodriguez got the win because Ferris didn’t go five and he also gave up just one run on a solo home run. Rodriguez’s final line was one run on two hits over three innings. Rodriguez struck out five and walked just one.

Scarlyn Lebron threw the final two innings, did not allow a hit or a run, and got the save. Lebron walked one and struck out three.

The Pelicans scored three runs in the bottom of the first inning and then never relinquished that lead. First baseman Brian Kalmer hit a two-run home run in the first, his second home run on the year (and in his career). Kalmer went 1 for 4.

Center fielder Brett Bateman hit an RBI double in the first inning and scored on Kalmer’s home run. He was 2 for 3 with a walk and a steal.

Second baseman Cristian Hernandez went 2 for 3 with a walk. In the bottom of the eighth. Hernandez doubled with two outs and then stole third base. The throw to third from the catcher was bad and Hernandez scored the fourth run on the error.

Kalmer’s home run, which was his first in Myrtle Beach.

ACL Cubs

Off day.