Chicago Cubs 2016 NL Central Championship Gear

myrtle beach pelicans logoWe are coming down to the end of the minor league season, and the Chicago Cubs are not the only organizational team in a playoff hunt.

Myrtle Beach has a post season ticket locked up by virtue of winning the first half title. No worries there.

Iowa is playing some good baseball right now, but they remain six games back of Oklahoma City. At this point the I-Cubs probably need quite a bit of help if they are going to have a chance in the playoffs.

Tennessee is mathematically still alive, but at seven games back their post season hopes are effectively zero.

South Bend has clawed their way up to third place, but they need to reach second to make the post season. Unfortunately, they remain four and a half back of that goal. They do have some games next week against second place West Michigan, though, so don’t write these Cubs off just yet. They can play their way into a fighting chance.

Eugene has played their way into a first place tie with Hillsboro, but thanks to the rules of the Northwest League they may need to beat Hillsboro outright to be certain of taking the second half postseason post. They control their own destiny, though. If they keep winning, they should make it.

Across the top five levels of the minor league organization, then, the Cubs are likely to place no more than three teams in the playoffs, although having two is more likely than all three. Between those races and the National League Wild Card hunt, we shouldn’t have any shortage of topics around here as we head towards September.

Scores From Yesterday

Iowa – Iowa blew this game open in the middle innings for a 13-2 win.
Tennessee – There was a lot of offense in this one, but most of it came from Montgomery. The Smokies lost 17-4.
Myrtle Beach – The Pelicans led nearly the entire game, but lost it via a wild pitch in the last inning. The final was 5-4.
South Bend – The Cubs could not keep up with Dayton’s offense in this 7-2 loss.
Eugene – Two big innings converted a close game into a blowout as the Emeralds won 12-5.
Arizona – Arizona got the shutout and the offensive eruption in this 11-0 home win.

Performances of Note

  • [Iowa] Christian Villanueva (3 for 6), Mike Olt (2 for 4, double), and Taylor Teagarden (2 for 5) all homered in this one. It was the 16th for Villanueva, the 5th for Teagarden, and he 7th for Olt.
  • [Iowa] Javier Baez doubled and finished 2 for 6. He also struck out 3 times.
  • [Iowa] Tommy La Stella tripled (his first) and finished 3 for 5.
  • [Iowa] Drake Britton pitched 4 innings of shutout relief, allowing 2 hits and a walk while striking out 3.
  • [Tennessee] The home runs for Tennessee came from Jacob Hannemann (his 5th) and Wes Darvill (his 2nd). Hannemann also tripled (his 8th) to finish with 2 hits.
  • [Tennessee] Bijan Rademacher and Jeimer Candelario each doubled and finished with 2 hits.
  • [Tennessee] The pitching lines for Tennessee are a whole lot of ugly, so feel free to check out the box score if you feel in the mood for a mournful sigh and a shake of the head. For now I’ll just mention the one guy who pitched a scoreless inning: Wes Darvill. The infielder. Who also homered. It was that kind of game.
  • [Myrtle Beach] Daury Torrez allowed just 2 runs on 4 hits and a walk over 6 innings while striking out 6. Both runs came on solo home runs.

  • [Myrtle Beach] Pin-Chieh Chen doubled and finished 2 for 5.
  • [Myrtle Beach] Chesny Young and Mark Zagunis both doubled as well. Young also walked and stole his 10th base.
  • [South Bend] Tommy Thorpe pitched 5.1 innings during which he allowed 5 runs (3 earned) on 10 hits and 3 walks while striking out 7.
  • [South Bend] Ian Happ walked, tripled (his 2nd), and finished 2 for 5.
  • [South Bend] Jeffrey Baez also finished 2 for 5, raising his second half line to .354/.370/.551 in the process.
  • [South Bend] The suddenly speedy Gioskar Amaya finished 1 for 2 and stole 2 more bases to raise his season total to 17. The catcher has stolen 4 bags in his last 4 games.
  • [Eugene] Oscar De La Cruz allowed 4 runs on 5 hits over 6 innings. He walked one and struck out 6.
  • [Eugene] Eloy Jimenez hit his 4th homer and finished 2 for 6 in this one.
  • [Eugene] Frandy Delarosa and Alex Batista each finished with 3 hits. Donnie Dewees had 2 hits and his 11th steal, and Sutton Whiting added 2 hits and his 2nd steal.
  • [Arizona] Austyn Willis struck out 2 and allowed a hit and a walk in his 4 innings on the mound. He was followed by Jesus Castillo (2 IP, 2 H, 1 K), Bryan Hudson (1 IP, 1 H, 2 K), Enrique De Los Rio (1 IP), and M.T. Minacci (1 IP, 1 K).
  • [Arizona] It was the bottom of the order that did the damage in this game, with Andruw Monasterio having the biggest day. The shortstop finished 4 for 5 with a double and his 5th stolen base.
  • [Arizona] Carlos Jimenez and Yohan Matos both doubled and finished with 3 hits. Roberto Caro added 2 hits.

Other News

  • Minor league coverage will be a fair bit lighter around here for the next week. I’ll be on vacation in the mountains for the next week, so the usual Daily will not return until the last day of the month. At that point we will be down to the final days of the minor league season, and the way things look now we could be enjoying some tight playoff chases as well. If anything big breaks in the next week, Brett will make sure you’re covered.
  • And, since even on vacation I can’t pry myself away from minor league baseball entirely, I will be picking up at least one Tennessee Smokies game on the trip. Friday, August 28 I’ll be in the stands watching this prospect-laden Double A team in action. There will probably be some baseball conversation on Twitter as well; you are following me on Twitter, right?
  • Dan Vogelbach is also on his way back to Tennessee. He had a good, if oddly low in the power department, season going before an oblique injury sidelined him in July.

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