Cubs Minor League Daily: #HugWatch Is Still In Effect

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Cubs Minor League Daily: #HugWatch Is Still In Effect

Chicago Cubs

We did it. We smashed the $12,000 target and raised over $14,000 with a day to go before donations end. That means the Blogathon is fully underway!(Good morning, Brett.) [Brett: HI, LUKE! FIRST BATCH OF COFFEE IS KICKING IN!]

Of course the fact that the Blogathon is underway means we are down to the wire on trades. The deadline is tomorrow afternoon, and that means we are likely to see some action today. The Cubs are still shopping, and despite the false alarm last night, I think we need to be in full #HugWatch mode pretty much from now until the deadline.

Myrtle Beach is off today, and that is going to complicate hug watching. There are plenty of players on the Myrtle Beach roster who could be involved in a deal, particularly on the pitching side. There are a couple of other places to watch today, though, particularly for indicators of a more major trade (not that we expect one, but, well, you never know).

One of the Cubs more attractive pitching prospects is on the mound for Tennessee tonight. Duncan Robinson came in at No. 27 on the pre-season Top 40, and after posting a 3.59 ERA with solid peripheral numbers in Tennessee this season, I doubt he moves down any at the mid-season rankings. A scratch of Robinson would indicate something in the mid-major territory is in the works.

For South Bend, keep an eye on Miguel Amaya. There are plenty of other trade candidates on that roster, but Amaya is probably the guy who would have to be in any major trades. Amaya’s stock seems likely to keep going up, though, so the Cubs shouldn’t be in a big hurry to deal him. That said, the Cubs have traded multiple minor league bats every year for the past couple of seasons now, and Amaya is the best position player in the system.

As for minor trades – the Cubs can continue to deal from their army of pitching prospects in A ball without issue. We may also see a trade or two involve someone on Iowa’s roster to free up positions on the 40-man roster for new acquisitions or for expected September call-ups who are not yet on the roster (such as, for example, Dakota Mekkes).

Triple A: Iowa Cubs
Sacramento 7, Iowa 4
Casey Coleman had a rough game, but the bullpen pitched well.

  • Casey Coleman: 1.2 IP, 6 R, 8 H, 2 BB, 2 K
  • Kyle Ryan: 4.1 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 1 BB, 3 K
  • Craig Brooks: 1 IP and a line of zeroes
  • James Norwood: 1 IP, 1 BB, 1 K
  • Stephen Bruno: 3 for 4, HR
  • Ryan Court: 1 for 4, HR
  • Will Remillard: 2 for 4, 2B
  • Kyle Ryan: 1 for 2

Double A: Tennessee Smokies
Tennessee 8, Chattanooga 3
The Smokies took a shutout into the eighth.

  • Keegan Thompson: 5 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 2 K
  • Jordan Minch: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 BB
  • Vimael Machin: 3 for 5, HR
  • Trent Giambrone: 1 for 1, 2B, and a hug heard round the world
  • Erick Castillo: 2 for 3, 2B
  • Yasiel Balaguert: 1 for 4, 2B
  • Eddy Martinez: 1 for 4, 2B
  • Connor Myers: 2 for 4, SB

High A: Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Myrtle Beach 4, Lynchburg 3
The return of Justin Steele went pretty well.

  • Justin Steele: 5 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 2 BB, 5 K
  • Tyler Peyton: 2.2 IP, 1 R, 3 H, 1 BB, 2 K
  • D.J. Wilson: 3 for 4, 2B, SB
  • Aramis Ademan: 2 for 4, SB
  • Yeiler Peguero: 1 for 4, SB
  • Jared Young: 1 for 4, SB

Low A: South Bend Cubs
West Michigan 3, South Bend 0
The Cubs managed just two extra base hits in this one.

  • Enrique De Los Rios: 5 IP, 2 R, 5 H, 1 BB, 3 K
  • Jake Steffens: 2 IP, 1 R, 2 H, 3 K
  • Christian Donahue: 1 for 3, 2B, BB
  • Delvin Zinn: 1 for 4, 2B

Short Season A: Eugene Emeralds
Vancouver 8, Eugene 1
The Emeralds got a good game from their starter, but the bullpen stumbled.

  • Eury Ramos: 5 IP, 3 H, 6 K
  • Luke Reynolds: 3 for 3, BB
  • Jonathan Sierra: 2 for 4, 2B
  • Levi Jordan: 2 for 4
  • Luis Diaz: 1 for 3, 2B, BB

Rookie: AZL Cubs 1
Cubs One 8, Athletics 3
The Cubs are back in first place.

  • Carlos Ocampo: 4.2 IP, 2 H, 2 BB, 4 K
  • Andy Weber: 2 for 4, 2B, HR, BB
  • Christopher Morel: 1 for 3, 2B, 2 BB
  • Yonathan Perlaza: 2 for 4, 2B
  • Josue Huma: 2 for 4

Rookie: AZL Cubs 2
Indians 10, Cubs Two 5
The Cubs allowed eight runs in the eighth.

  • Yovanny Cruz: 5 IP, 2 R (1 ER), 4 H, 7 K
  • Jonathan Bruzual: 1.1 IP, 1 K
  • Brennen Davis: 1 for 3, BB, SB
  • Reivaj Garcia: 3 for 5, 2B, SB
  • Drew Wharton: 2 for 3

Other Notes

  • In his role as both a starter and a reliever, Kyle Ryan has a 3.07 ERA and 42 strikeouts in 44 innings for Iowa. He also has a groundball rate of 62.9%. I think it is only a matter of time before the Cubs give him the call, and I am looking forward to seeing what he can do when that happens. He’s a little prone to the long ball, but in general, he’s a high groundball, decent strikeout lefty who can pitch multiple innings.
  • Keegan Thompson gave up 8 runs in 3 innings in his Double A debut on June 23. He hasn’t allowed any earned runs in four of his six starts since then. He will finish July with a monthly ERA of 1.48 over 5 starts. [Brett: Holy crap.]
  • None of the former top ranked players on the Bleacher Nation Top 40 homered yesterday, but don’t let that stop you from making your donation to Make-A-Wish if you haven’t already.
  • And finally, let’s take a look at the Myrtle Beach higlights starring Justin Steele. This was his first game back in High A since Steele had surgery late last season. He looked very good in his rehab starts in Mesa, posting the highest K/9 and lowest BB/9 of his career, and he largely kept that trend up yesterday. Steele is one of the better left handed starting pitching prospects in the organization.



Author: Luke Blaize

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