The minor league regular season is now over, but a couple of Cubs’ prospects picked up some hardware before it ended.
Young finished with a line of .321/.394/.388 over 102 games for the Pelicans, easily beating out second place Kevin Heller (.297 AVG) for the crown. Young’s high average approach did not produce much power (one home run), and he did not show significant speed once on the bases (twelve steals in seventeen tries), but out of a second baseman or utility infielder the high average bat may be enough to move him up the prospect charts this winter.
Contreras (.333/.413/.478) beat Max Kepler for the batting title by just .011. He also finished second to Kepler in OBP by .003, and ranked third in SLG behind Kepler and Adam Brett Walker. As impressive as the batting title is, it is but one piece of a remarkable 2015 campaign put together by the Cubs’ best catching prospect.
Scores From Yesterday
Iowa – The Cubs closed out their season with a 7-4 loss.
Tennessee – The Smokies ended their year with a doubleheader. The won the first game 2-0, but lost the finale 3-2.
Myrtle Beach – One rough inning led to this 5-4 loss.
South Bend – South Bend concluded their season with a 3-0 shutout win.
Performances of Note
- [Iowa] Reliever P.J. Francescon got the start in a game pitched largely by the bullpen. He lasted 3 innings, allowed just one hit, and struck out 3. Armando Rivero and Drake Britton each followed with a scoreless inning of work.
- [Iowa] John Andreoli hit his 5th homer of the season and stole his 33rd base as part of his 2 for 4 day. Mike Baxter also finished 2 for 4, including his 3rd triple.
- [Iowa] Christian Villanueva hit his 18th homer.
- [Tennessee] Jeffry Antigua managed 4 scoreless innings in the first game despite giving up 6 hits and 2 walks. He also struck out 2. Neil Ramirez (1 IP, 1 K) and Starling Peralta (2 IP, 1 H, 1 K) completed that contest.
- [Tennessee] Game Two was pitched by committee, including Ryan Williams (1 IP, 1 H), Corey Black (1 IP, 1 R, 1 H, 1 K), Michael Wagner (2 IP, 3 BB, 2 K), James Pugliese (1.1 IP, 2 R, 2 H, 3 BB), and Gerardo Concepcion (0.2 IP, 1 BB, 1 K).
- [Tennessee] Willson Contreras locked up the batting title with a 4 for 4 performance. He also stole his 4th base of the year.
- [Tennessee] The only extra base hits for the Smokies came in Game Two, and both were triples. One was hit by Tyler Pearson, and the other by Bryant Flete.
- [Myrtle Beach] Chesny Young finished 1 for 4 with a walk.
- [Myrtle Beach] Pin-Chieh Chen hit his 4th homer and finished with 2 hits. Jacob Rogers also had 2 hits on the day.
- [Myrtle Beach] Working in relief, Tyler Ihrig struck out 4 over 3 scoreless innings in which he allowed 3 hits. Jonathan Martinez, David Garner, and James Farris each worked one scoreless inning of relief.
- [South Bend] Trevor Clifton finished strong with a 6.1 inning, 2 hit effort. He walked no one and struck out 5. Alex Santana and Sam Wilson completed the shutout.
- [South Bend] A Jesse Hodges double was the only extra base hit of the day. Hodges and Kevin Encarnacion each finished with 2 hits.
- [South Bend] Ian Happ completed his first season of professional ball with a single and a walk. His final line for South Bend is .241/.315/.448.
- The Cubs had a few other players rank highly on some league leaderboards when the season ended. Starting with the playoff bound Pelicans in the Carolina League, Mark Zagunis finished second in walks with 80, one shy of the lead, and ranked second in OBP at .406. Jonathan Martinez won the Carolina League ERA title with a 2.56 over 21 starts, and he topped the charts in WHIP as well at 0.94.
- In the Pacific Coast League, John Andreoli finished second in steals with 33, trailing first place by just two. Carlos Pimentel finished second in ERA at 2.95 over 26 starts, and his 118 strikeouts were good enough for third.
- Conteras was the award winning headliner for the Southern League Smokies, but he was not alone is accumulating high rankings. Felix Pena came in second in strikeouts with 140, and P.J. Francescon’s 22 saves were good for second in that category.
- The Cubs had two pitchers near the top of the charts in strikeouts in the Northwest League. Oscar De La Cruz came in second at 73, and Pedro Araujo ranked fourth with 70 (despite pitching 23 fewer innings than De La Cruz). De La Crus also tied as the league leader in WHIP (1.00) and finished third in ERA at 2.84.