Javier Assad finished April with an ERA of 0.95 after four starts. He ran into trouble last week in Peoria, allowing four earned runs in under three innings, but yesterday he was right back to putting up zeroes. Yesterday, though, those zeroes went on the scoreboard despite seven hits and no strikeouts.
Don’t be too worried by Assad’s lack of strikeouts. Pitchers in the minors really are working on things, and there is a pattern over the past few years for strikeout rates to trend up at the very highest levels of the Cubs’ system. Besides, Assad just struck out seven over five innings last month. If you’re working on a particular pitch or location – perhaps not using a wipeout pitch – and you still manage to get outs? That’s a very good thing.
- Kyle Ryan: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, 4 K
- Anthony Bass: 1 IP, 2 H, 1 BB
- Efren Navarro: 2 for 4, 2B
- Oscar De La Cruz: 5 IP, 3 R, 9 H, 2 BB, 5 K
- Daury Torrez: 2 IP, 1 H, 2 K
- James Norwood: 1 IP, 2 K
- Charcer Burks: 2 for 5
- Trent Giambrone: 2 for 4
- Zack Short: 1 for 3, 2B
- Yasiel Balaguert: 2 for 4
- Eddy Martinez: 1 for 4, 2B
- Trey Martin: 1 for 1, HR
- Alex Lange: 5 IP, 5 R (4 ER), 6 H, 1 BB, 2 K
- Casey Bloomquist: 2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB, 1 K
- Connor Myers: 1 for 5, 2B
- P.J. Higgins: 3 for 4
- Wladimir Galindo: 1 for 4, 2B
- Tyler Alamo: 1 for 4, 2B
- Kevonte Mitchell: 2 for 3
- Javier Assad: 5 IP, 7 H, 2 BB
- Jesus Camargo: 4 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 BB, 1 K
- Jhonny Bethencourt: 3 for 4, 2B, SB
- Austin Filiere: 1 for 5, 2B
- Michael Cruz: 1 for 4, 2B
- Zach Davis: 2 for 3, BB, SB
- With yesterday’s contest, the Smokies have now won three straight series. Tomorrow they head back to Chattanooga where they won three of five late last month, and then they face Mississippi at home. The Smokies split six in Mississippi to open the season. Right now they are two and a half back of Chattanooga in the division with a little over a month to play.
- We might need to start paying attention to Trey Martin. He is on the old side (25), he is playing in the Southern League for the third season, and has played over 180 games at that level (those were all partial or injury shortened seasons), but his OPS hasn’t been this high since he played in rookie ball. Given that Martin’s big skill his is defense, all his bat has to do is be just good enough to keep him on a roster so his glove can shine in a fifth outfielder role. With a line of .270/.365/.404, 3 HR, 7 SB, I’m thinking he just might need to be tested against the Pacific Coast League by midseason.