Thanks to the Ryan Dempster trade chatter and the signing of Juan Carlos Paniagua, the professional debut of the Cubs’ $30 million dollar outfield prospect Jorge Soler was almost pushed out of the headlines.
Soler, officially listed at 6’3″ 205 lbs, was the DH in the AZL Cubs game last night. He batted three times before being replaced by Ben Carhart and finished his game 0-3. He made contact all three times, but none of those balls left the infield.
It would have been awesome had he hit six grand slams in his first game as a professional, but reality doesn’t write Disney scripts. The important thing from last night was not his production (or lack thereof), but simply that he was in uniform, in a game, and facing real pitching in an actual game situation for the first time in about a year.
Scores From Yesterday
Iowa – The Cubs managed to score just one run on 10 hits in this 9-1 loss.
Tennessee – Tennessee kept it close, but ultimately lost 4-3.
Daytona – The Cubs led briefly, but only briefly. They lost 8-3.
Peoria – The Chiefs scored in the first two innings, but did not score again as they lost 4-2.
Boise – The Hawks fell in a 2-1 pitchers’ duel.
Arizona – The Cubs played three innings of free baseball before finally losing 4-3 in twelve.
Performances of the Day
- [Iowa] The pitching was shaky in this game, but that’s to be expected when the scheduled starter is scratched at the last minute. Frankie De La Cruz had the best night on the mound with three scoreless innings.
- [Iowa] For the third consecutive game Dave Sappelt finished with two hits, including a double.
- [Tennessee] Jae-Hoon Ha had another pretty good game in this one, finishing 2 for 3 with a walk and his eighth stolen base.
- [Tennessee] Kevin Rhoderick faced six batters in his 1.1 innings of relief. All four outs came via the strikeout.
- [Daytona] Matthew Szczur hit his fourth triple and stole his 33rd base as part of a three hit night.
- [Daytona] Ronald Torreyes doubled in his 2 for 4 game. The young second baseman has multiple hits in five of his last six games. He also stole his tenth base.
- [Peoria] Javier Baez made his first of what is sure to be a great many starts as the number three hitter in this game. I think he likes it there. When the game ended he had his seventh double, his ninth home run, his 17th stolen base, and his 22nd RBI.
- [Peoria] Yao-Lin Wang, who had been closing, started this game. After five outs knuckeballer Jospeph Zeller came and and pitched the next 5.1 innings. Despite giving up seven hits in that span, Zeller limited the damage to a single run.
- [Boise] Ian Dickson allowed two runs (one earned) while striking out six in the first five innings of this game. Hunter Ackerman pitched the rest of the game, striking out four.
- [Boise] Stephen Bruno had both of the Hawks’ hits, including a double. He also drove in Gioskar Amaya for the team’s only RBI.
- [Arizona] The Cubs had some pretty good pitching in this game, starting with 2012 draftee Paul Blackburn. Blackburn got the game off to a decent start (3 innings, 1 run, 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 strikeout) before handing the ball to Carlos Martinez-Pumarino for four innings of no hit ball. Martinez-Pumarino walked two and struck out five.
- [Arizona] Shawon Dunston and David Bote both tripled. Those triples were the Cubs only extra base hits.
Other Minor League Notes
- Josh Vitters had Thursday off. More than likely he had the day off because he was just coming off a 16 game hitting streak and could probably use the break. However, given all the trade rumors swirling, it is not impossible that there is something more to it. There has been little if any chatter surrounding Vitters so far, but you never know.
- Trey Martin has been in the shadow of Shawon Dunston since they were both drafted, but this season the young center fielder has emerged as a clear prospect in his own right. He gave an interview to the blog High Heels and Highlights that is worth a read. It turns out he really likes Zaxby’s. So, if any you Daytona or Tennessee fans out there decide to take a cross continent road trip to see the Hawks play, pick up some Zaxby’s before you leave the South and Trey Martin might be happy to see you.
Farm System Standings
AAA – Iowa Cubs : 41 – 58.
Pacific Coast League American Northern Division – Third Place: 17.0 Games Behind.
AA – Tennessee Smokies : 12-15
Southern League North Division – Fourth Place : 4.5 Games Behind
High A – Daytona Cubs : 12-16
Florida State League North Division – Fourth Place : 5.5 Games Behind
Low A – Peoria Chiefs : 10-16
Midwest League Eastern Division – Sixth Place : 5.0 Game Behind
Short-Season A – Boise Hawks : 12 – 22
Northwest League East Division – Third Place : 8.0 Games Behind
Rookie League – AZL Cubs : 18 – 6
Arizona Rookie League East – First Place : 1.0 Games Ahead