Down on Cubs Farm: Machado impressive, Assad hangs tough, Ademan's hot bat, more


by - Staff Writer -
Patrick Gorski - USA Today Sports
Patrick Gorski - USA Today Sports

Friday was a night to forget for the Cubs system as they went 0-5 for regularly scheduled games. If you want to get technical, you could say they went 1-5 as Myrtle Beach was able to close things out from their suspended game the night before but the overall results last night were not pretty.

IOWA CUBS 5 – Nashville Sounds 6: The Cubs fell victim to the Sounds on Friday as their late-inning rally fell short 6-5. It was the first two innings that did them in as the Sounds jumped out to a 4-0 lead through two innings as Matt Swarmer got off to a rough start before settling down to last 5 2/3 innings of 5ER ball with 8K.

With Dixon Machado putting the Cubs on the board in the third with an RBI single, Nashville as able to push the lead to 6-2 with just two innings left in the game. It was in the eighth when things began to get a whole lot more interesting as a Donnie Dewees double made things a 6-3 game. A few pitches later Zack Short went deep for the second time this week to bring things within one at 6-5.

Unfortunately for Iowa, their rally would come just short going down in order in the ninth to fall 6-5 dropping their record to 55-44 on the season. Machado was the man of the day on offense collecting a season-high three hits to go with his RBI. Phillip Evans added another multi-hit effort while Mark Zagunis, Jim Adduci, Ian Happ, and Taylor Davis combined to go 0-14 with an RBI. Johnny Field returned from his rehab stint to pick up a hit.

TENNESSEE SMOKIES 2 – Birmingham Barons 4: The rough second half continued for the Smokies as they fell 43-54 with a 4-2 loss to the Barons. This wasn’t a typical day on the mound as the Smokies used a pitcher by committee approach with four pitchers throwing at least two innings in the loss.

The Smokies found themselves down 4-0 after just three innings with Joel Booker providing the thunder with three RBI’s on two singles. From that point on, the Smokies never seemed able to recover as it took them seven innings to get their offense going. Gioskar Amaya got Tennessee on the board with an RBI single in the seventh to make things a 4-1 game. Jhonny Pereda added an RBI single of his own in the eighth to make it a 4-2 game, but that was all the Smokies were able to muster in another quiet defeat.

Tennessee collected just five hits in the game with five different players having one each. Nico Hoerner was one of those players as his average sits at .265 for the year. Zach Davis and Christian Donahue picked up the other two hits that did not result in RBI’s while Miguel Rondon and Tommy Nance combined to toss three scoreless relief innings in the loss.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 2 – Carolina Mudcats 3: With their suspended game resulting in a 5-1 Pelicans win, the teams matched up for their regularly scheduled contest with Carolina as the teams played a shortened seven-inning game with Carolina emerging 3-2.

Javier Assad continued to struggle in terms of picking up wins but still pitched well on the hill giving up 3ER in five innings of work as his ERA is still in the sub-4 range at 3.95. His nine strikeouts were also a positive sign showing that he is not afraid to be aggressive in the zone.

Offensively, the Pelicans got right to work in the first inning pushing across a pair of runs on RBI singles from Tyler Durna and Cam Balego to take the 2-0 lead. That would be all they could do offensively as their bats went cold the rest of the night. After Brice Turang made things a 2-1 game with a solo shot in the third, Eddie Silva provided the difference-maker in the fourth as his seventh homer of the season gave the Mudcats a 3-2 win to send the Pelicans to 37-59 for the year.

Aramis Ademan had the hot bat in this one going 2-3 on the night as he was the lone player with two hits. Myrtle Beach managed just six hits total in the game as a promising start went by the wayside late. Miguel Amaya was given the night off.

SOUTH BEND CUBS 1 – Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 2: Looking to avoid the sweep, Faustino Carrera turned in another solid outing on the hill as he went five solid innings of 1ER ball to leave with another ND. It was the bullpen that let things get away late as Mother Nature roared in during the eighth inning to sweep the Cubs out of Wisconsin in eight innings 2-1.

The things that were working to start the second half are not anymore as the constant promotions and injuries seem to be affecting this team’s rhythm. Although it took five innings, the Cubs had no trouble scoring first once again as Jonathan Sierra put them on the board with an RBI double. That lead was short-lived as the Timber Rattlers responded in the bottom of the fifth on a Yeison Coca squeeze play to bring things even 1-1.

With the bullpen now in charge of the game, Wisconsin was able to show great patience in the seventh as the Cubs were faced with a bases-loaded jam needing to find a way out. Korry Howell showed terrific patience during his plate appearance as his walk put the Rattlers up 2-1 as the hard-luck continued for South Bend. To make matters worse, the Cubs didn’t even have a chance to rally late as severe storms rushed through the area forcing the game to be called with Wisconsin winning 2-1.

South Bend will continue their road trip this weekend as they limp out of Grand Chute with a 49-46 record. The Cubs continue to struggle offensively collecting just five hits in the game with not one single player recording a multi-hit effort. Andy Weber, Rafelin Lorenzo, Luke Reynolds, Sierra, and Rafael Narea picked up the hits.

EUGENE EMERALDS 4 – Hillsboro Hops 5: What started as a rough start for the Emeralds falling behind 5-0 through three innings turned into a highly competitive matchup as the Ems fell just short against the first place Hops 5-4 to fall to 16-19 for the year. With Jorge Barrosa putting the Hops up for good with a homer in the first, Hillsboro continued to add to their lead scoring all five runs in the first three innings including three in the second for the early advantage.

The Eugene bats finally came to life in the bottom of the fourth inning as Zac Taylor continued his red-hot stretch at the plate with a bases-loaded single to cut the deficit to 5-2. Jake Slaughter was thrown out at third on the same play as that inning had even more promise to it. In the fifth, it was time for Fernando Kelli to get in on the fun as his double made things a 5-4 game. That was the last of the offense for either team as both bullpens tightened down the hatches late with the Ems coming up short 5-4.

Darius Hill led the way for Eugene with two hits as he was the lone player to earn a multi-hit effort. The Emeralds also picked up hits from Slaughter, Chase Strumpf, Kelli and Taylor among others with Taylor and Kelli responsible for all four RBI’s. Tanner Dalton and Brandon Hughes tossed four near-perfect innings of relief with just one walk as their lone blemish.

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Tags: Dixon Machado, Phillip Evans, Mark Zagunis, Jim Adduci, Ian Happ, Taylor Davis, Gioskar Amaya, Jhonny Pereda, Zach Davis, Christian Donahue, Javier Assad, Tyler Durna, Cam Balego, Aramis Ademan, Miguel Amaya, Faustino Carrera, Jonathan Sierra, Andy Weber, Rafelin Lorenzo, Luke Reynolds, Rafael Narea, Fernando Kelli
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