Cubs Minor League News: Canario raking, Espinoza with the win, Mervis stays hot, more
Canario is an elite prospect for the Cubs

Cubs Minor League News: Canario raking, Espinoza with the win, Mervis stays hot, more

by - Senior Writer -

We are approaching the end of the 2022 Minor League season, as there are just five days remaining until the offseason. That means, for the most part, it will be one game a day from here on out, with the Iowa Cubs the center of attention on Saturday.

Looking to end their road portion of the schedule on a positive note, the Cubs continued to battle with the Omaha Storm Chasers as this was the rubber game of their five-game series. Unlike the previous two that saw the Cubs lose both games, Iowa showed up in a big way and took down Omaha 9-4 to claim the series.

At long last, you had the right-hander Anderson Espinoza pick up a win, as things have been a struggle since arriving in AAA. Entering the game with an 0-5 record, Espinoza picked a great time to have his best start, going five innings and allowing four runs on six hits.

What stood out the most was his command as he walked one and struck out eight, proving he does have the ability to deliver strong outings. Following Espinoza's start, the Cubs used a trio of relievers in CD Pelham, Cam Sanders, and Ben Leeper to finish things off as they tossed four perfect frames with three punchouts.

Leading 1-0 in the first after the Matt Mervis RBI groundout, Omaha managed to answer back and take their only lead when Brent Rooker capped off his massive series with a two-run shot to give the Storm Chasers a 2-1 lead. Once the third inning started, it was all Cubs who scored six times in the next three frames to put the game away.

Three of those runs came in the third when John Hicks and Narcisco Crook picked up RBI singles to put the Cubs back in front, while the bases-loaded walk from Levi Jordan extended the lead to 4-2. The next inning saw Alexander Canario rip another RBI double before coming home on the Hicks single and the Cubs were off and running 6-2.

Leading 6-3 in the fifth, Trent Giambrone pushed the lead to 7-3 with a sacrifice fly before the Maikel Garcia homer in the bottom half closed the gap to 7-4. That was not only the game's final run for Omaha, but that 7-4 score remained intact until the eighth inning, when the Cubs scored their final runs.

Canario was in the middle of that inning with an RBI fielders choice, but it was Mervis coming through with the final RBI hit on a single as he inches closer to the 120 RBI mark for the season.

After their final off day on Sunday, the Cubs will be home for their final three games of 2022 when they play host to the Toledo Mud Hens. Although they will not be in the postseason, the Cubs can play spoiler as the Mud Hens are in a battle for the postseason.

Crook led the Cubs offense with three hits while Hicks and Mervis added two. Mervis, Hicks, and Canario also led the team with two RBIs, as everyone in the lineup had one hit.

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