Down on the Farm: 2-3 record, Iowa splits doubleheader, highlights, more


by - Staff Writer -
Down on the Farm: 2-3 record, Iowa splits doubleheader, highlights, more

It was a busy day on the farm as all four teams were in action with five games being played. The day saw mixed reviews throughout with most games coming down to the wire and a 2-3 overall record.

IOWA CUBS 0 – Oklahoma City Dodgers 3: With horrendous weather pushing Friday’s game to Saturday, it was a daily dip for Iowa baseball looking to finish out the homestand strong. Despite runs coming at a premium in both contests, Iowa managed a split on the day, dropping game one 3-0 before hanging on in game two 2-1.

Matt Swarmer got the call-in game one and looked to deliver a strong performance. He didn’t perform as well as he had hoped, lasting just four innings and allowing all three runs. Matt Carasiti and Dillon Maples each put together strong outings out of the pen, throwing three-shutout innings and allowing no walks.

When you look at the line Swarmer threw, you would think he struggled. That is not the case as it was one bad inning that did him and the Cubs in. That inning happened to be the fourth as the Dodgers pick up an RBI single from Daniel Castro paired with a two-run homer Will Smith for the 3-0 lead. That was all the offense Oklahoma City would need as Tony Gonsolin, and Zach McAllister held the Cubs to just three hits in the game. Swarmer, Phillip Evans and Dixon Machado were responsible for those hits.

IOWA CUBS 2 – Oklahoma City Dodgers 1: Looking for a bit more offense in game two, the Cubs struggled at the dish for the second time in the day pushing across just two runs. This time, however, it was just enough with the Cubs holding on 2-1.

Collin Rea gave the Cubs everything they could have asked for in his start going six strong innings with five punchouts and just one run allowed. Rowen Wick battled some command issues in seventh but was able to slam the door for the save.

For the second time of the afternoon, Iowa found themselves playing catchup as Rea struggled with his command in the second inning. Despite that and the heavy traffic on the bases, Rea allowed just one run as an RBI groundout from Errol Robinson gave the Dodgers a 1-0 lead. Iowa quickly responded with a run of their own in the bottom half as Trent Giambrone went yard for the third time this season tying things up 1-1.

With Rea doing his thing on the mound, it was up to the Cubs to reward him at the dish. It took long enough, but Iowa was eventually able to break through in the sixth. As Machado and Wynton Bernard were already on base, Donnie Dewees came through with a single to give Iowa the lead 2-1 before they closed things out one inning later for the win.

With the doubleheader split, Iowa goes to 6-3 on the season and continues to be at the top of the standings.

TENNESSEE SMOKIES 2 – Birmingham Barons 4: It was a tale of two games for the Smokies as they looked to stay hot in Alabama. Clinging to a tight one-run lead after five innings of play, the Barons rallied for three unanswered runs late in the game to hold on for the 4-2 win.

Zach Hedges did his best to keep the Smokies in front despite lasting just four innings on the mound. Hedges allowed only one run on four hits in his outing and left with the lead, but by not going five innings, the bullpen had to work a little bit harder, and that proved to be costly.

Hedges was greeted with some first inning run support as the first two hitters of the ball game reached for Tennessee. It was Nico Hoerner driving home the first run of the night with a double for the 1-0 Tennessee lead. The lone run Hedges allowed in his outing also came in the first when Gavin Sheets laced a single to left before being thrown out trying to stretch for two.

Tennessee retook the lead with some instant offense in the fourth. P.J. Higgins continued to see the ball well this time hammering his second home run of the season to give the Smokies a 2-1 lead through four innings of play. The bullpen knew they had their work cut out for them as they needed to go five innings in hopes of preserving the win.

After allowing the tying run in the sixth on a Luis Gonzalez triple, the Smokies bullpen surrendered the lead in the seventh and simple couldn’t recover. Ramon Torres singled home the go-ahead and winning run before Joel Baker added some insurance with a single of his own for the 4-2 Barons lead. The Smokies were unable to make any noise in their final two at-bats, falling 4-2 and dropping to 5-3 on the season.

Jared Young and Higgins each collected multiple hits in the ball game while Hoerner went 1-3 with a walk and his RBI. Higgins pushed his average to .333

on the season.

SOUTH BEND CUBS 6 – Lansing Lugnuts 0: It was a strong day for the South Bend Cubs as they dominated the Lugnuts from start to finish for the 6-0 win. Riley Thompson set the tone on the mound going five innings of 4- hit ball and lowering his ERA to .93 for the season. Offensively, the Cubs were on their games also pounding out ten hits in the victory.

Christopher Morel opened the scoring in the second with a single to the left for the 1-0 lead. It was a lead the Cubs never relinquished as they continued to pile on especially one inning later. It was in that third inning where South Bend took complete control of the game making it even that more challenging for Lansing to come back.

Starting with a Cole Roederer single and followed up by doubles from Nelson Velazquez and Tyler Durna, a 1-0 lead suddenly ballooned to a 5-0 lead as South Bend busted things wide open. After a little bit of a lull offensively, the Cubs offense capped off the scoring in the sixth inning when D.J. Artis tallied another double for the impressive 6-0 victory.

With the win, South Bend moves back to .500 at 5-5. Velazquez continues to hit the cover off the baseball collecting three more hits in four at-bats. Durna added a pair of hits himself, while five other Cubs each tallied one hit on the evening.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 4 – Fayetteville Woodpeckers 6: Unlike South bend, the Pelicans were on the opposite end of a deep hole early as the looked to recover for the victory. Despite a furious ninth-inning rally that made things interesting late, it was just not enough to overcome as Myrtle Beach falls 6-4.

In his second start of the season, Javier Assad was not quite as crisp as his previous start lasting only four innings. He did, however, only allow two runs as he was able to battle for a majority of his start. Those two runs allowed didn’t come until the fourth and fifth innings when a Corey Julks homer and an error chased Assad as he was trailing 2-0 through five.

Now down 3-0 after a wild pitch in the seventh, it was an eighth-inning let down from the bullpen that ultimately put the game out of reach. With another error opening the scoring, A Colton Shaver double tallied with a double from Jonathan Arauz pushed the lead to 6-0 before the Pelicans came to the plate for the final time in the ninth.

It was in their final at-bats when Myrtle Beach began to make things interesting. With Jimmy Herron on base, Carlos Sepulveda put the Pelicans on the board with single to make it a 6-1 game. A Luke Reynolds double and an error suddenly made things interesting with the score now 6-4. With a runner in scoring position and down to their final out, the Woodpeckers managed to hold on for the 6-4 win.

With the loss, the Pelicans drop to 2-8 on the season and continue to sit in last place. Despite collecting just four hits in the loss, the Pelicans showed great patience by tallying eight walks, but not much couldn’t come from it.

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