Cubs Minors Daily: Ed Howard smacks 4th homer, Herz impressive, King with 1st save, more


by - Senior Writer -
Kim Klement - USA Today Sports
Kim Klement - USA Today Sports

The Cubs had a near-perfect day on the diamond as six teams played minor league action. As always, Saturday meant DSL fun as both DSL Cubs teams face off every Saturday. That meant that four other games were going on across the system as the Cubs played exceptionally well.

In total, the Cubs posted a 3-1 record on the day, with only AAA Iowa coming away with the loss. The next several days should be a fun time to watch as plenty of players may start moving around as the September call ups loom near.

OMAHA STORM CHASERS 7 – IOWA CUBS 1

Like the Milwaukee Brewers have the Cubs number, Omaha has Iowa's number this season as they knocked them off 7-1 on Saturday. Cory Abbott continues to struggle as a starter in AAA as this season has been a nightmare for him. Coming off his organizational pitcher of the year honor in 2019, Abbott is sitting at 1-6 on the season with a 7.22 ERA.

Things got worse for him yesterday as he allowed all seven runs in just 4 1/3 innings.

Outside that, Ethan Roberts, Brendon Little, and Tommy Nance were strong in relief as that trio allowed just two hits to go with five strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings of work. As bad as Abbott's final line looks, and it is bad, he did strike out nine hitters, but the home run ball did him in as he allowed four homers in the game.

The first of those came in the second inning when Erick Mejia connected for a two-run shot to make things 2-0. One inning later saw Nick Pratto connect for an RBI single ahead of another homer, with this one coming from Kyle Isabel as Omaha built their lead to 5-0 through three. That Pratto single was the lone RBI that didn't come from the home run ball as Adalberto Mondesi and Ryan McBroom added solo shots in the fifth to push the Omaha lead to 7-0.

It took nearly the entire game for Iowa to cash in, but the bottom line is they were able to score and prevented a shutout in the process. The suddenly hot Greg Deichmann was responsible for that run as his RBI single in the eighth capped off the scoring in a 7-1 Omaha win. Not only did Deichmann collect the lone RBI, but he was responsible for two of the team's five hits. Ian Miller, Jared Young, and Johneshwy Fargas added the final three hits.

SOUTH BEND CUBS 7 – PEORIA CHIEFS 4

The Cubs continued their strong effort against Peoria this week, using a pair of three-run innings to do the most damage. Max Bain got back to putting together strong starts after a brief two-start slip-up. Bain was strong in his five innings of work, allowing three runs, with only one earned to go with six punchouts in a no-decision. Tyler Santana earned his first professional win in relief.

As good as Bain was, the third inning was not too kind as he allowed all three runs in that frame. Jhon Torres picked up the first of those runs with an RBI groundout before an error, and a balk gave the Chiefs a 3-0 lead. Good thing the offense came to play in the fifth as they wanted to make sure Bain wasn't going to let that rough inning define his outing.

In the top of the fifth, Peoria returned the favor for the Cubs as an early inning error allowed for the first of three runs to come home. Luis Vazquez stayed hot and added an RBI single ahead of the Alexander Canario sacrifice fly, making things 3-3. That portion of the lineup continued to do damage in the sixth, with Pablo Aliendo putting the Cubs up 4-3 with a sacrifice fly. Not ready to give up quite yet, Peoria responded in the bottom of the sixth with an RBI double off the bat of Todd Lott, bringing things back to even 4-4.

South Bend had the last laugh as they once again went to work offensively in the seventh, pushing across three more runs to put the game away. Bryce Ball picked up the game-winning RBI hit as his double had the Cubs in front for good 5-4 before coming home on the Yonathan Perlaza single. An Aliendo RBI single later in the inning capped off the scoring with South Bend winning 7-4.

Perlaza had a great night at the plate leading the way for the Cubs with three hits. Yohendrick Pinango continues to make solid contact adding two hits with Vazquez, Ball, Aliendo, and Jake Slaughter all grabbing one hit in the win. Liam Spence went hitless as his average falls to .100 on the season.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 6 – COLUMBIA FIREFLIES 2

After having their 11-game win streak against Columbia snapped the other day, the Pelicans went right back to work topping their instate rival 6-2 on Saturday. DavidJohn Herz continues to go about his business on the mound improving to 3-4 on the season with a strong start. In 5 1/3 innings, Herz allowed just one run on two hits, paired with two walks and five strikeouts. His ERA sits at 3.43 for the season as he continues to deliver quality outings.

For the Pelicans, a pair of three-run innings sparked the offense, with the first of those coming in the fourth. Casey Opitz opened the scoring with an RBI double as he gave the Pelicans the 1-0 lead and never looked back. That double was followed by bases-loaded walks to Josue Huma and Ed Howard, with Howard getting credit for the game-winning RBI.

With Herz out of the game and replaced by Sheldon Reed in the sixth, Darryl Collins immediately took advantage of that, using an RBI single to pull the Fireflies within 3-1. That would be as close as Columbia would get as Howard connected for a three-run shot in the bottom of the sixth, putting the Pelicans in front 6-1.

It was Howard's fourth homer of the season. Columbia capped off the scoring with a Diego Hernandez groundout in the seventh, but it wasn't enough as Myrtle Beach takes the series from Columbia with the win.

The Pelicans made the most of their chances with just six hits as Huma led the way with two. Christian Franklin, Opitz, Howard, and Jacob Wetzel had the rest of the hits, with Howard coming away with four RBIs in the win.

ACL CUBS 12 – ACL ATHLETICS 9

It may not have been pretty, but the Cubs found a way to top the Athletics, scoring 11 times in the final two frames to win. Unlike the Cubs, who scored most of their runs late, the Athletics scored all their runs before the fifth inning, with two of those runs coming in the first inning with a wild pitch and an error contributing to an early 2-0 lead.

After a Felix Stevens single in the second had the Cubs within 2-1, the Athletics busted out for seven runs to take a 9-1 lead. Four of those runs came in the second, with Cristopher Cruz using a bases-loaded walk to get things started before Jhoan Paulino did the most damage with a bases-clearing double to extend the lead to 6-1.

One inning later saw Marcos Brito triple home the next run before a pair of wild pitches had the Athletics up 9-1 in the third and the Cubs searching for answers. It may have taken six innings for the Cubs offense to come to life, but there was no stopping them once they did. With BJ Murray using an RBI single to open the scoring in the sixth, Miguel Fabrizio and Stevens added RBI doubles to pull within 9-5. Add in an error and the Ismael Mena sacrifice fly, and the Cubs scored six times in the sixth to make things a 9-7 game.

As if six runs in the sixth wasn't good enough, why not score five more times in the seventh to take the lead. Fabrizio played a big part in that as his two-run double kept the momentum going with the game tied 9-9. Stevens would then add an RBI double of his own to provide the winning RBIs with the Cubs leading 11-9. Stevens would later come around to score as the Flemin Bautista sacrifice fly capped off the 12-9 comeback win for the Cubs.

Stevens and Fabrizio were tough to contain as they each collected three hits to go with eight combined RBIs. James Triantos joined Murray with multi-hit efforts, with Ezequiel Pagan and Bautista collecting the final hits.

DSL CUBS RED 6 – DSL CUBS BLUE 5

While one of the DSL teams had trouble winning games this week, you have the other in DSL Red who is starting to play better ball and closed out the week defeating Blue. Following a huge four-run first inning that got things rolling for Red, their pitching was just good enough as they managed to hold off Blue in the end.

None of the four runs came on a hit as Anderson Suriel grounded into a double play with the bases loaded to score the game's first run. That was followed by series of three wild pitches leading to three more runs as Red took a commanding 4-0 lead after one half of an inning. Speaking of wild pitches, that is how Blue scored their lone run in the first, with Red returning the favor once in that portion of the first to take a 4-1 lead into the second.

Looking to make a bit more contact, Red-capped off their scoring in the third inning by pushing across two more runs to extend their lead. Once again, the Blue defense did them no favors as an error allowed for both runs to score on the play, helping Red build a massive 6-1 lead. The rest of the game was all about Blue fighting back, with Jerry Torres picking up an RBI groundout in the third to make things 6-2.

Torres found himself in the middle of the action once again in the fifth, reaching base on another Red error to pull within 6-3 before Dilan Granadillo came through with the lone RBI hit using a single to make things 6-4. Still trailing by two in the ninth, Blue had a chance to win this game, but managed to score just one time off a wild pitch before falling 6-5.

Each team collected five hits in the game, with Cristian Hernandez the lone player to have two. Cristian More, Suriel, Andrews Cruz, Oscar Hernandez, and Early Tatis were some of the players with a hit.

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