Down on the Cubs Farm: Kimbrel impressive, Pelicans finally win, Roederer hits for cycle


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

It was a near perfect night on the farm for the Cubs as they combined to go 4-1 on the evening. Despite many great performances throughout from the likes of Vimael Machin, Cole Roederer, Matt Swarmer, etc.… one storyline stole the headlines as it appears Craig Kimbrel made his final minor league appearance of the season.

IOWA CUBS 5 – Omaha Storm Chasers 1: Behind his strongest outing of the season, Matt Swarmer improved to 5-7 on the season following a 5-1 Iowa win. Swarmer certainly had the Storm Chasers guessing, as he dealt seven great innings of 1ER 5H ball despite 3BB and just 1K. It was the kind of outing the Cubs were looking for as everyone will have to step up in the rotation with Adbert Alzolay in the bigs for the time being.

Iowa took the lead immediately in the first inning when Phillip Evans knocked home Jim Adduci with a single. Chase D’Arnaud answered for Omaha in the top of the second with a single of his own and just like that it was 1-1. That would be the final run of the game for the Storm Chasers, however, as the Cubs took control of the game in the fourth inning never looking back.

Iowa benefitted from sloppy play early as a one-out error, and a two-out walk to Taylor Davis put a pair of runners on base without the benefit of a hit. Donnie Dewees capitalized on that situation bringing home the game-winning run with a double and 2-1 Iowa lead. After Francisco Arcia loaded the bases being hit by a pitch, Dixon Machado stayed red hot with a single to plate a pair pushing the lead to 4-1.

Two innings later it was the Italian stallion Robel Garcia getting in on the action as he clubbed his 14th homer of the season for the 5-1 Iowa lead. That would be more than enough runs as the Cubs turned things over to Danny Hultzen and Craig Kimbrel for the final two frames as the two of them combined for 3K over a pair of perfect innings in the win.

Iowa gets back on the winning side of things as they improve to 43-35. The Cubs received a plethora of multi-hit efforts with Adduci, Mark Zagunis, Garcia and Davis picking up those honors. Dewees, Evans, and Machado tallied the final three hits as Ian Happ was one of two players hitless in the ball game. The comeback story continued for Hultzen, as he tossed a scoreless eighth to keep his 0.00 ERA intact.

The big story of the night will be surrounding Kimbrel as he made quick work of Omaha in the ninth with a pair of K’s. All talk surrounding Iowa after the game leads us to believe he is ready to head to Chicago as soon as today. The question is will he be in Wrigley for the Braves series or do they hold him off until this weekend at the earliest.

TENNESSEE SMOKIES 8 – Chattanooga Lookouts 6: With the news of Nico Hoerner returning to game action possibly this weekend, it seemed to awaken the Smokies offense as they won an 8-6 slugfest with fellow Tennessee statesmen Chattanooga. Looking at the line, you would think that starting pitching was a problem, but that was not the case as Tyson Miller was solid yet again.

Miller (4-3) not only got the win but did so by continuing to limit his opponents’ offensive outputs allowing just 2ER on 4H. With 0BB and 4k, Miller was in complete control as his ERA sits at 2.55 for the season. If it weren’t for a struggling Smokies bullpen down the stretch, this would have been a blowout, but in the end, the Smokies found a way to get a much-needed win.

The Tennessee offense got started early as a second-inning sacrifice fly by Connor Myers added with a Jhonny Pereda third inning double made it a 2-0 Smokies lead. It was in the fourth inning when the Smokies bats came to life as they backed Miller with a considerable lead.

Christian Donahue led things off with a walk, before being erased at second on a force out. Miller followed that up with a walk putting two men on base as a Roberto Caro single loaded the bases with one gone. That is when Vimael Machin delivered the massive blow in the inning as his Grand Slam put the Smokies up 6-0. Tennessee got a pair of singles from Jared Young and Pereda later that inning with Pereda stretching the lead to 7-0.

Chattanooga finally got to Miller in the bottom of the sixth as the two-run shot from Mitch Nay cut the lead to 7-2 while jumpstarting the Lookouts offense in the process. Myers extended the lead to 8-2 in the top of the seventh before the Lookouts began to crawl back into the game against a struggling Smokies pen.

Freshly promoted Tyler Peyton was looking to make an impact after pitching well in Myrtle Beach earlier this year. However, that performance didn’t translate well in his first outing with the Smokies as he allowed 4ER in a 1 2/3 allowing the Lookouts to crawl back within 8-6. Nay got him for his second homer of the game in the eighth before Wyatt Short closed things out to send the game to the ninth. Short then finished off the Lookouts in the ninth for his sixth save of the season as Tennessee held on 8-6.

The Smokies are creeping closer to that .500 mark as they are 36-39 on the season. Tennessee pounded out 16 hits in the victory, with a trio of players picking up three-hit games. Young, Donahue and Charcer Burks were those players with Pereda joining in with a multi-hit game himself. Despite his grand slam, Machin was 1-5 as his average dropped under .300 at .298. Short lowered his season ERA to 1.72 with another great relief outing.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 4 – Winston- Salem Dash 3: At long last, the Pelicans were able to get back in the win column as a pair of long balls proved to be the difference in the 4-3 win. Taking the ball was Paul Richan (7-3) who was looking to improve upon his previous outings. Early on it was not a good sign as Richan allowed three first-inning runs. However, he was able to ride the ship and held the Dash scoreless the rest of the way before the pen held tight to give him the win.

Winston – Salem certainly got off to a great start as their offense was on point in the first. Two batters into the game and the Dash had a pair of runners on base as Tyler Frost stared the inning with a single before Mitch Roman took a walk. Then with one swing, Steele Walker made it a 3-0 game as he belted his fifth homer of the season giving the Dash control from the start. However, the Dash needed their pitching to hold up as their offense failed to plate a run the rest of the game.

With Richan settling into his groove, it was up to the Pelicans offense to pick him up as he did his job to keep things close. The fourth inning is when the Pelicans finally broke through with Carlos Sepulveda leading things off with a single. Now standing on second after advancing on a grounder, Luke Reynolds made it a 3-2 game, hitting his third homer of the season. Aramis Ademan was able to add a bunt single later in the inning before stealing second, but could not be driven in.

Myrtle Beach continued their comeback effort in the sixth inning as it was all about two-out magic to get the job done. Once again it was Reynolds finding himself in the middle of the action as his double extended the inning for the Pelicans. That proved to be the turning point in the game as Cam Balego added his eighth homer of the season a few pitches later and just like that it was 4-3 Pelicans with the bullpen taking over.

After his strong showing in the sixth, Manuel Rondon had to work out of some trouble in the seventh as a pair of singles opened the frame for the Dash. Following an error later in the inning, Rondon was able to recover striking out the final two hitters to keep the lead at 4-3 before turning things over to Ben Hecht in the eighth. Much like Rondon, Hecht had to work out of a Jam in the second with a leadoff double getting things started. However, Hecht bared down to finish things off retiring six of the next seven Dash hitters to seal the deal and pick up his fourth save of the season.

The Pelicans are hoping this win can jumpstart things for the second half as they sit at 22-51. Reynolds was the leader on offense, as he picked up two of the teams six total hits. Sepulveda, Ademan, Balego and Grant Fennell added the other four with Miguel Amaya going 0-4 on the night. Hecht lowered his ERA to 2.65 with the save.

SOUTH BEND CUBS 10 – Fort Wayne Tin Caps 4: South Bend has had one of the worst offenses in terms of runs scored much of the season, but on Tuesday night, that offense flashed their potential putting up a ten spot in a 10-4 win. Making his first start since the All-star game was Riley Thompson who didn’t miss a beat. In his five innings, Thompson (4-3), allowed just 1H to go with 1BB and 5K as his ERA fell to 2.29 in the winning effort.

South Bend put the lumber to the ball early and often, and that immediately started in the first inning. A leadoff double from Delvin Zinn was followed by an Andy Weber single putting a pair on base. An errant pickoff throw pushed the games first run across giving the Cubs a 1-0 lead as they lead throughout.

A walk to Brennan Davis put a pair of runners on base once again, but a Tyler Durna double play appeared to kill what looked to be a promising rally as Weber was now standing on third. Have no fear, Christopher Morel and Cole Roederer are here as they picked up consecutive doubles to push the lead to 3-0. An error allowing Jonathan Sierra to reach base made things 4-0 as the Cubs were in complete control early.

That would be the last of the runs until the sixth inning when South Bend got back to business with one of their three two-run innings off the Tin Caps pen. Starting in the sixth, saw the top of the Order come through yet again as Zinn rolled a single through the middle to make it 5-0 ahead of the Weber Sacrifice fly making it 6-0. Roeder added to that lead in the seventh as his big game continued with his third homer of the season to make it 8-0 through seven.

Fort Wayne finally got on the board in the bottom of the eighth using the long ball from Michael Curry to do so to make it 8-1. Luis Almanzar followed that up with a double before coming home on the two-out single from Tucupita Marcano to make it 8-2.

Not done on the offensive end, South Bend kept on swinging in the ninth as Roederer picked up his third triple of the year making it 9-2. Sierra brought home Roederer a few pitches later with a sacrifice fly as we had a 10-2 game with three outs to go. Fort Wayne refused to go down quietly picking up an RBI single from Curry ahead of an Almanzar sacrifice fly to make it 10-4, but that is as close as things would get with the Cubs cruising 10-4.

South Bend is 40-33 and remains near the top of the standings for both the season and second half to this point. Roederer had a night to remember as he went 5-5 with 4RBIs at the plate to bring his average up to 247 for the year. It was a historic 5-5 performance for him as he hit for the cycle in the process.

He is hitting well north of .300 for June. Joining him with a perfect 5-5 night at the plate was Zinn, with Morel adding four hits of his own. Those three contributed to 14 of the team's 18 hits.

Behind Thompson on the pitching side of things was Jack Patterson continuing to pitch well in relief tossing a pair of scoreless innings to bring his ERA down to 2.52.

EUGENE EMERALDS 0 – Boise Hawks 4: In a battle of the Cubs new short-season A team and previous short-season A team, it was the Hawks coming out victorious with an impressive 4-0 win. With Eduarniel Nunez getting the call everyone expected another piggyback type outing from Eugene something they are doing more than average this season.

Despite posting a 2.89 ERA thus far this season, Nunez was roughed up a bit in this one allowing a pair of earned runs in 2 2/3 innings before handing the ball to Blake Whitney who matched Nunez with a couple of runs allowed in 2 2/3 innings of work.

The winning run came across to score in the second inning when Yorvis Torrealba picked up an RBI groundout for the 1-0 lead. The Hawks continued to get to Nunez in the bottom of the third chasing him after a pair of singles including an RBI single from Isaac Collins to make it 2-0. Whitney then entered the game to walk the bases loaded, but a pair of caught stealing attempts kept the Hawks from scoring more that frame.

Collins continued to have a great day in the bottom of the fourth inning as he picked up his second consecutive single to make it 4-0 game through four. The best chance for the Emeralds to score came in the top of the sixth as they finally appeared to gain momentum. Luis Vazquez led the inning off with a walk before advancing to second on a Danny Zardon fielders’ choice to put two men on base.

With two down in the inning, Jonathan Soto came through with a single which at the time looked like it would bring home a run. However, Vazquez was gunned down at home on the play, killing the rally and keeping the shutout intact 4-0. That was the final runner to reach scoring position in the game as Eugene mounted just one more hit the final three innings falling 4-0.

The Emeralds are 7-5 on the season as they continue with the Hawks this week. With just five hits in the game, there wasn’t much excitement for Eugene offensively, but Fernando Kelli picked up another multi-hit game to bring his average to .318. Zardon, Soto and Yonathan Perlaza added the other three hits. The lone bright spot on the mound came from Raidel Orta who not only tossed his longest outing of the season (3 innings), did so in dominating fashion allowing 0ER on 0H with 1BB and 1K.

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Tags: Cole Roederer, Vimael Machin, Adbert Alzolay, Phillip Evans, Jim Adduci, Taylor Davis, Francisco Arcia, Dixon Machado, Robel Garcia, Mark Zagunis, Ian Happ, Tyson Miller, Connor Myers, Jhonny Pereda, Christian Donahue, Roberto Caro, Jared Young, Tyler Peyton, Wyatt Short, Charcer Burks, Paul Richan, Carlos Sepulveda, Luke Reynolds, Aramis Ademan, Cam Balego, Manuel Rondon, Ben Hecht, Miguel Amaya, Delvin Zinn, Andy Weber, Tyler Durna, Christopher Morel, Jonathan Sierra, Luis Vazquez, Fernando Kelli, Yonathan Perlaza
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