It took awhile for things to come together, but it looks like my first minor league road trip of the season will definitely happen later this month. My wife and I will making the drive from Baltimore down to Eastern Tennessee in late August, and we will be at the Tennessee Smokies home ballpark on Thursday, August 23 and Friday, August 24. For both games we will be sitting in Row 1 of Section 104, just to the outfield side of the Smokies’ dugout.

Any local Bleacher Nations readers, or readers who feel up to a late August road trip, are welcome to track us down at the games. Naturally, we’ll be wearing our fine Bleacher Nation apparel to at least one of those contests.

It is always a pleasure to meet and talk Cubs with the fans at minor league games, and we all know that Bleacher Nation fans are the best fans of them all. So check your calendars, buy your tickets, plan your road trips, and I’ll see you at the ballpark in just a few weeks.



Scores From Yesterday

Iowa – The Iowa Cubs found themselves in an unlikely pitchers’ duel on Monday night, but they could not close out the win. The Cubs lost this one 2-1.
Tennessee – The Smokies rallied in the ninth, but it wasn’t enough. They fell 7-6.
Daytona – The Daytona Cubs had Monday off.
Peoria – Peoria took a early lead, but they could not hold on to that lead late. They lost this one by a score of a 8-6.
Boise – It was an ugly game in which both teams committed four errors, but Boise came out of it with an 11-7 win.
Arizona – The Cubs pushed this game into ten innings, but they could not come up with the win. The final in ten was 10-8.

Performances of the Day

  • [Iowa] Frankie De La Cruz pitched five solid innings for the Cubs. He struck out four while allowing a run on five hits. The three walks were a problem, but he did keep the Cubs’ in the game.
  • [Iowa] As is typical of a pitchers’ duel, there was not a lot of offense in Iowa last night. Greg Rohan and Blake Lalli each had two hits, but that’s about it.
  • [Iowa] Tony Campana has not been in Iowa very long this year, but after his two steals in Monday’s game he has now 10 Triple A steals in just 15 games.


  • [Tennessee] Junior Lake and Justin Bour both homered. Lake’s two run shot came in the ninth inning and pulled Tennessee within one.
  • [Tennessee] Matthew Szczur enjoyed one of his better games as a Smokie. He finished 2 for 5 with a double and a stolen base.
  • [Peoria] Catcher Chadd Krist had a somewhat unusual game. He finished 0 for 2 with two walks and two runs scored.
  • [Peoria] Zeke DeVoss stole his 30th base of the season on Monday. Oliver Zapata stole his 14th.
  • [Boise] Gioskar Amaya rebounded from one of his worst career games by going 3 for 5 with his sixth home run.
  • [Boise] Also homering for Boise were Stephen Bruno (his second) and Carlos Escobar (his first).
  • [Boise] Nathan Dorris struck out three of the final four batters en route to his first save.
  • [Arizona] 2012 draftees Pierce Johnson and Jasvir Rakkar both pitched two innings, both allowed two hits, and both struck out two. They both had a pretty good day.
  • [Arizona] After a mysterious absence (he was probably sick), Jorge Soler returned to the lineup on Monday. He reached twice on a single and a walk and scored both times.
  • [Arizona] Catcher Justin Marra finished the game 3 for 4 with a double. He also cut down one of the two runners to tried to steal while he was behind the plate.


Other Minor League Notes

  • Photographer Dylan Heuer was at the Iowa Cubs game on Monday, and once again he has posted a number of great pictures to his website. In addition to seeing some excellent shots of Tony Campana being Tony Campana, now is also your chance to finally find out what Greg Rohan and Frankie De La Cruz actually look like.
  • Facing off against De La Cruz and the Cubs in Iowa last night was Arizona’s Trevor Bauer, one of the best pitching prospects in baseball and the guy who is causing many coaches to rethink their own methods with his unusual training and warm up routines. Combined, the Cubs tagged him for five hits and two walks.
  • The rapid promotion of Lendy Castillo continues. The rehabbing right hander started the game and pitched two innings in Tennessee. He used 28 pitches to give up a run on a hit and a walk while striking out two. That is a much smaller workload than he had been getting. It will be interesting to see if he continues to start as he works his way up the minors, or if the Cubs are about to slot him back into the bullpen.
  • The Boise Hawks remain in first place, and they have stretched their lead to three games.
  • The AZL Cubs have again slipped to second in their division, one game behind the A’s. They remain in playoff position, however, thanks to the Wild Card. The Cubs currently have the second best record in the league.



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