Cubs announce minor league player and pitcher of the month


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Velazquez was impressive in August
Velazquez was impressive in August

CHICAGO – The Chicago Cubs today named Double-A Tennessee outfielder Nelson Velazquez as the organization’s minor league player of the month for August, while High-A South Bend right-handed pitcher Max Bain was named the club’s minor league pitcher of the month.

Velazquez, 22, batted .325 (25-for-77) with seven doubles, one triple, seven home runs, 22 RBI, a .402 on-base percentage, a .714 slugging mark and a 1.117 OPS in 22 games between South Bend (two games) and Tennessee (20 games). He was promoted to Tennessee, August 3, and in eight contests from August 6-13, hit .387 (12-for-31) with 10 extra-base hits, 10 RBI and a 1.489 OPS.

The six-foot right-handed hitting Velazquez is batting .272 (93-for-342) with 51 runs, 21 doubles, two triples, 18 home runs, 66 RBI and 14 stolen bases in 92 games between South Bend and Tennessee. He is hitting .328 (22-for-67) against left-handed pitching and .296 (32-for-108) with runners in scoring position.

Selected by the Cubs in the fifth round of the 2017 draft out of the PJ Education School in Puerto Rico, Velazquez has hit .259 (287-for-1,108) with 62 doubles, 10 triples, 43 home runs and 162 RBI in 305 career minor league games. In 2019, he played 78 games between the Rookie League Cubs and South Bend and batted .288 (81-for-281) with 17 doubles, four triples, six home runs and 39 RBI.

Bain, 23, posted a 2.96 ERA (8 ER/24.1 IP) in five August starts with South Bend, walking eight and striking out 27 while holding opponents to a .172 average (15-for-87), a .258 on-base percentage and a .568 OPS. He opened the month with 9.2 shutout innings spanning two starts, August 5 vs. Peoria and August 11 at Fort Wayne, allowing three hits and three walks with 11 strikeouts.

Bain this season 4-8 with a 5.36 ERA (51 ER/85.2 IP) in 20 starts for South Bend, walking 46 and striking out 102, good for an average of 10.7 strikeouts per 9.0 innings. He was signed by Chicago as a non-drafted free agent in January of this year after pitching for Independent League Utica in 2019.

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