Cubs Minor League News
Patrick Gorski - USA Today Sports

Cubs Minor League News

by - Senior Writer -

TOLEDO MUD HENS 8 - IOWA CUBS 4: Despite the Cubs backing Riley Thompson and Edwin Escobar with four runs of support in the fourth inning, it was the bullpen that let them down as Toledo scored seven times in the final two innings to pick up the 8-4 win. Thompson and Escobar combined for six innings on the mound, walking five and striking out three, but they only allowed two hits.

The lone off of them came in the top half of the fourth on a bases-loaded walk, but the Cubs offense responded in a big way. Darius Hill got the party started with a two-run single to put the Cubs in front, with Ali Sanchez and Miles Mastrobuoni tacking on a pair of singles to push the Iowa lead to 4-1. Those were the game's only runs for Iowa, but with a 4-1 lead entering the eighth, things were looking good for the Cubs.

That was until Sam McWilliams and Brad Wieck picked the wrong time to have rough outings as the Mud Hens rallied for seven runs over the final two frames. Justice Bigbie started things off with a two-run blast before the Spencer Torkelson double tied things up at 4-4. Toledo eventually would take the lead on an error before another Torkelson double and Jace Jung homer gave them an 8-4 win.

BIRMINGHAM BARONS 12 - TENNESSEE SMOKIES 8: Everyone knew that this would be the most highly anticipated series of the week for the Cubs system, and so far, it has delivered. With the Smokies holding an 8-6 lead late and looking to pull within one game of first, the Barons had other ideas as they pushed across six runs in the eighth to pick up the 12-8 win.

Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the first, Kevin Alcantara added an RBI double to tie things up. That score would hold until the fourth when a Wilfred Veras homer put the Barons back in front 3-1, only to have Luis Verdugo add a three-run shot in the bottom of the inning to put the Smokies in front 4-3.

Verdugo and Alcantara would add RBIs in the fourth to extend the lead to 6-3 before the Barons responded for three in the sixth off another Veras homer and the Tyler Neslony double. The back-and-forth affair continued into the bottom half of the sixth, with Matt Shaw getting in on the fun with an RBI single to give the Smokies the lead again before another Moises Ballesteros homer extended their lead to 8-6.

That is when things went south for the Smokies as a pair of RBI singles off the bats of Michael Turner and Alsander Womack put the Barons in front for good before they tacked on three more runs as part of a six-run eighth inning to win 12-8. Everyone in the Smokies lineup apart from Josh Rivera had a hit, with Ballesteros leading the way with three.

WEST MICHIGAN WHITECAPS 5 - SOUTH BEND CUBS 3: Late inning losses and big innings were the theme of the night for the Cubs system as South Bend saw an early 3-0 lead turn into a 5-0 loss. With Will Sanders going out and tossing six strong innings, allowing just one run and striking out five, you had to like the Cubs chances as he continues to do his job on the mound.

Sanders needed to be on top of his game as Colin Fields struck out six in five innings, allowing just three runs in the process. All three runs came in the fourth inning when Pedro Ramirez stole home to open the scoring while the Jonathon Long homer extended the lead to 3-0. Sanders would give up his lone run in his final inning of work off a Dom Johnson homer, but it was after he departed when the White Caps did most of their damage.

Three of their five runs came in the seventh, with Josh Crouch coming through with a game-tying RBI double before the Seth Stephenson sacrifice fly put the Whitecaps on top for good. They would add another off a wild pitch in the eighth to extend their lead to 5-3, which was the final score in the end. Ramirez continues to make plenty of contact, picking up two more hits to push his average to .326. Parker Chavers also had two hits in the loss.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 5 - AUGUSTA GREENJACKETS 2: The lone team to come away with a win in full-season ball was the Pelicans, who are playing great ball right now. Sparked by a three-run fourth and a fantastic pitching performance from 2023 draft pick Jaxson Wiggins, the Pelicans stayed hot to secure another win.

Making his first start in Low-A, Wiggins was not only impressive, but was near lights out as he allowed one hit in three innings while striking out five. He gave way to Erian Rodriguez, who also struck out five in three innings, with Sam Thoreson adding two as the Pelicans had 13 punchouts as a team. For the most part, Davis Polo managed to go pitch for pitch with Wiggins as he came away with six strikeouts in five innings.

However, he was touched up for four earned runs, with three coming in the fourth. Alfonsin Rosario opened the scoring with a sacrifice fly, only to have Andy Gariola deliver the game-winning two-run blast shortly after. The long ball continued to play a massive role for the Pelicans in the fifth when Jacob Wetzel jogged around the bases for his third home to extend the lead to 4-0.

Augusta ended the shutout bid with an RBI single off the bat of Henry Owen in the fifth, but weren't able to do much more apart from that as they added a sacrifice fly late. Cristian Hernandez also got in on the fun with an RBI single as the Pelicans rolled 5-2. Hernandez paced the offense with two hits, while Rosario and Wetzel added two.

ACL ROCKIES 16 - ACL CUBS 7: The ACL Cubs have struggled this week, and that continued on Thursday as the Rockies took care of business 16-7. This was actually an 8-7 game heading into the final inning, but the Rockies struck for eight runs to break the game wide open.

Backed by an Adan Sanchez second-inning homer, the Cubs were in front early, 2-0, but this game was far from over. Following a two-run single from Jimmy Harron in the top of the third, the Jameson Hannah sacrifice fly put the Rockies in front 3-2. It was a short-lived lead as the Cubs offense responded with three more runs as an RBI ground tied things up before the Geuri Lubo single made things 4-3. Sanchez also picked up his third RBI with a bases-loaded walk as the Cubs extended their lead to 5-3.

The back-and-forth affair continued into the fourth, with Yahil Melendez homering to tie the game back up at six before the Sanchez single put the Cubs in front 7-6 through five. That would be their final lead of the game as the Rockies ended the game with 10 unanswered runs, including eight in the final inning, to grab the win. Roynier Hernandez was credited with the game-winning single in the sixth, with a bases-loaded Erick Bautista triple breaking things open in the seventh.

DSL ROYALS 6 - DSL CUBS BLUE 2: Three games into the season, the DSL Blue squad dropped their first game, falling to the Royals 6-2. Anytime you go through a game with just two hits, you're making it hard to win a game as the Cubs offense was limited to just two hits. Had it not been for two big innings early on, the Cubs could've won this game, but with three runs in the first it was the Royals leading this one from start to finish.

Tony Ruiz opened the scoring with an RBI single before an additional RBI single from Omar Mejia and a double from Enmanuel Santos followed that to give the Royals a 3-0 lead. Santos was just getting started as he connected for a solo shot as part of a two-run third inning to extend the Royals lead to 5-0 before tacking on their final run in the fifth.

Trailing 6-0 in the bottom of the fifth, the Cubs finally started showing signs of life offensively, as they didn't want to go down without a fight. Brailin Pascual showed great patience to put an end to the shutout with a bases-loaded walk, while an RBI groundout closed out the scoring, the Cubs 6-2 loss.

DSL CUBS RED 15 - DSL PIRATES 10: There were plenty of fireworks throughout this game, but most of the fireworks came late. Despite scoring three times in the first to take a 3-0 lead, the Cubs found themselves trailing 6-5 entering the final inning. Then came one of the more impressive offensive showings in quite some time as the Cubs scored 10 runs in the final frame to pick up the 15-10 win.

Led by the Cesar Lugo first-inning single to give the Cubs a 1-0 lead, it was the Cubs offense who came out strong as they scored three times in the first and five times in the first three innings, with Jesus Meneses adding a sacrifice fly in the second and Robin Ortiz adding a single in the third.

While the offense started fast, the pitching didn't, as the Pirates responded with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first off of a couple of Cubs miscues before the Kendrick Herrera single in the second made things 4-3. Another RBI single from Brailyn Brazoban helped keep things close before he put the Pirates on top with a sacrifice fly in the sixth.

Trailing by that 6-5 score entering the seventh, the Cubs offense erupted for a massive inning which was to be expected when you're first two games are cancelled. While an RBI forceout tied the game, it was the Edgardo De Leon double that put the Cubs in front good with a wild pitch making things 8-6. That was followed by four bases loaded walks including one by top 15 prospect Fernando Cruz as the Cubs opened up a 12-6 lead.

The Cubs closed out their massive 10-run inning with Daniel Campos delivering a two-RBI single before coming around to score on the Vincent Nunez double to give DSL Red the 15-6 lead. Not to be outdone, the Pirates offense was far from finished as they put together a big inning of their own anchored by a pair of RBI singles off the bats of Edwarli Brioso and Brazoban to pull within 15-10 before falling by that score.

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