Cubs' Minor League Daily: Behind Boise Baseball

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Cubs’ Minor League Daily: Behind Boise Baseball

Chicago Cubs

At long last that talented Boise Hawks team is going to take the field.

But before they do, I highly recommend you fire up Twitter and give a follow to @BoiseHawksRadio. This is the Twitter feed for the Hawks’ play-by-play voice Mike Safford. In the minors, the radio guys often travel with the team on the same buses, stopping at the same stops, sleeping in the same hotels, and generally sharing the life of a minor league player. Safford does a fantastic job of providing an insight into that life. He also doles out some nifty bits of baseball information as well.

And while we’re on the subject, check out the latest entry in Mike Safford’s blog. He talks a bit about the long bus ride and the relative size of various fish, but he also gives a nice report on Boise’s Opening Day starter Jose Arias (who is already throwing up to 96 MPH). He has some nice things to say about Marco Hernandez, Shawon Dunston Jr., and a certain 2011 first round draft pick now playing shortstop in Peoria as well. All in all, its’ a great read.

AAA – Iowa Cubs. 29 – 39
When the wind blows out in Iowa we can see some inflated scores. That was the case in this one as the Cubs lost 10-8.

Brooks Raley only allowed one home run, but that is just about the only bright spot on his day. In five and a third innings he was rocked for eight runs on nine hits while only striking out two. Esmailin Caridad allowed another run to score in his two and two thirds innings, as did Scott Maine via a solo home run in the ninth.

Blake Lalli was again on first, and again he launched a long ball, his sixth, as part of a two hit game. Brett Jackson went 3 for 4 with a triple and his 13th stolen base of the season. Alfredo Amezaga also swiped a bag. Josh Vitters, batting cleanup, reached twice with a hit and a walk; that is his fourth walk this month and his 15th on the season. His career high is 22.

AA – Tennesse Smokies. 33 – 34
Thanks to some great starting pitching and some clutch work by the bullpen, Tennessee has pulled to within one game of .500. They won a nailbiter 3-2.

Nick Struck needed 94 pitches to get through five and two thirds innings, but he did so while allowing just four hits and striking out three. Alberto Cabrera continued what Struck started by throwing two innings of one hit, two strikeout ball. Kevin Rhoderick came in to get the final out in the eighth. He started the next inning, but with two outs in the ninth he walked two batters and was pulled. Jeffry Antigua allowed those runs to score, but he did hold the lead and walked away with his first save.

Matt Cerda had one of his best games of the season, a three hit performance that featured his second home run of the year. The other two Tennessee runs were driven in by Justin Bour who had a double and a single in the game. Logan Watkins also had two hits.

High A – Daytona Cubs. 29 – 36
The rain has really wrecked havoc on the Daytona Cubs lately. On Thursday they completed a game that was suspended on Wednesday, and lost 7-3. They then followed that game up with a rain shortened 2-1 loss in seven and a half innings.

Robert Whitenack opened Wednesday’s game, but when play resumed on Thursday it was Frank Del Valle who took the mound. Del Valle allowed three runs, all of them unearned, on two hits and two walks in two and two thirds innings of work. A.J. Morris picked up the next four outs while allowing one run to score, and Tony Zych struck out two in a scoreless final frame.

There were no multi-hit games for Daytona in this contest, nor were there any extra base hits. Nelson Perez did reach three times with a single and two walks and John Andreoli stole his 19th base of the season.

In the shortened second game, P.J. Francescon threw five fantastic innings of scoreless, two hit ball while striking out two. Ryan Searle blew the win in his inning of work, and Scott Weismann took the loss when he allowed the go ahead run to cross the plate in the final half inning to be played. Combined, the Cubs’ pitchers allowed just four hits all game, but that was enough for the loss.

Micah Gibbs went 2 for 3 with a double and his fourth home run of the season; he pretty much was the Daytona offense.

Low A – Peoria Chiefs. 33 – 34
Too little offense cost the Chiefs as they fell back under .500 and out of first half playoff contention with a 5-3 loss.

Kyler Burke pitched six and a third innings and allowed just three runs on six hits (including two home runs). Luis Liria took the loss, though, as he allowed another two runs to score, both of them unearned, while recording the final five outs.

Javier Baez hit his fourth home of the season, driving in two of the Chiefs’ three runs. Dustin Geiger‘s double was the only other extra base hit for the team. Pin-Chieh Chen stole his eleventh base of the season.

Author: Luke Blaize

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