Cubs Minor League Daily: Strong Pitching Performances From Rucker and Clark

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Cubs Minor League Daily: Strong Pitching Performances From Rucker and Clark

Cubs Minor Leagues and Prospects

It is hard to not get too excited by early season performances, but the three scoreless innings Bailey Clark turned in yesterday deserves some attention. Clark has some great stuff, but last season his control was a mess and his walk rate left him constantly in trouble. Yesterday was his second appearance in 2018, and it is now his first appearance without giving up a walk since 2016. Clark refining his control would be a potentially big story this year, if it continues to play out that way.

But we shouldn’t get ahead of ourselves. My rule of thumb for starting to take certain rate stats seriously is 100 PA for batters, and about 30 innings for pitchers. We are a long way away from those targets right now.

Triple A: Iowa Cubs

Iowa’s game was postponed due to weather. Fortunately they head south, to Nashville, for today’s game.

Double A: Tennessee Smokies
Tennessee 5, Mississippi 4
The Smokies took advantage of three Mississippi errors to move within a game of .500.

  • Michael Rucker: 5 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 BB, 6 K
  • Jake Stinnett: 1.1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 K
  • Craig Brooks: 2 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 3 K
  • Trent Giambrone: 0 for 2, 3 BB, SB
  • Jason Vosler: 1 for 5, HR
  • Eddy Martinez: 1 for 3, BB, SB
  • Ian Rice: 1 for 3, 2B, BB
  • Trey Martin: 2 for 4

High A: Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Winston-Salem 6, Myrtle Beach 4
The Pelicans took an early lead, but did not score after the fourth.

  • Alex Lange: 5 IP, 2 R (1 ER), 4 H, 4 K
  • Tyler Peyton: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 1 BB, 1 K
  • D.J. Wilson: 1 for 3, BB, SB
  • P.J. Higgins: 1 for 2, 2 BB
  • Austin Upshaw: 2 for 5

Low A: South Bend Cubs
South Bend 9, Bowling Green 4
The Cubs trailed 3-0 after two innings, and then scored nine times on just five hits.

  • Cory Abbott: 5 IP, 4 R (3 ER), 7 H, 1 BB, 5 K
  • Bailey Clark: 3 IP, 2 H, 4 K
  • Jared Young: 1 for 2, 2B, 2 BB
  • Tyler Payne: 2 for 4, 2B

Other Notes

  • Last season Michael Rucker was one of the pitching surprises as he began the year in the middle of South Bend’s bullpen and ended it as one of the best starters for Myrtle Beach. His first start for Tennessee makes it seem like he will be picking up right where he left off.
  • Another day, another round of noteworthy pitchers taking the mound for the Cubs farm system. Today, keep an eye on Alec Mills for Iowa and Brendon Little for South Bend. Mills had his 2016 derailed by injuries, but he could be a fifth starter candidate as soon as later this year. Little was one of the Cubs’ first round picks last summer and has the potential to be a fast moving reliever or a mid-rotation starter one day.

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Author: Luke Blaize

Luke Blaize is the Minor League Editor at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @ltblaize.