The Iowa Cubs were on the field once again on Tuesday as the Chicago Cubs’ triple A affiliate continued their series against the Memphis Redbirds. After Jay Jackson and the Iowa Cubs dropped Monday’s game 6 to 2 to the Redbirds, starting pitcher Travis Wood took the mound on Tuesday in hopes of evening the series. Unfortunately for Wood, the Iowa Cubs’ offense forgot their was a game as the Iowa Cubs dropped their second consecutive game of the series to the Redbirds 4 to 0.
Here is what should be taken away from the Iowa Cubs game on Tuesday.
What Went Right: Starting pitcher Travis Wood was relatively effective in his start on Tuesday against the Redbirds. Wood allowed two runs (one of which was earned) on seven hits and two strikeouts. Wood also had eight strikeouts on the game. The Cubs’ front office still has high hopes for Wood. Cubs’ fans have been quick to write off the Cincinnati Reds trade involving Sean Marshall as a bust, but it is still too early to give up on Wood. If the Cubs are able to trade Ryan Dempster and/or Matt Garza at some point in the 2012 season, Wood is going to be given an opportunity in the Chicago Cubs’ starting rotation. Until that point, Wood has to continue to find his command and pitch effectively with the Iowa Cubs. Reliever Jeff Beliveau threw two innings of shutout baseball.
What Went Wrong: The Iowa Cubs’ offense. As a team, the Iowa Cubs had seven hits. Though, four of the team’s seven hits came from infielder Luis Valbuena and catcher Welington Castillo. Center fielder Brett Jackson was o for 3 with two strikeouts. After going the previous 29 plate appearances with only one strikeout, Jackson regressed with his two strikeouts in Tuesday’s game. First baseman Anthony Rizzo and third baseman Josh Vitters were a combined 2 for 8.
What Was interesting: Infielder Luis Valbuena collected another two hits to add to his season total, and the utility infielder is now hitting .333 on the season. Valbuena was on the Major League roster to open the season, but, was shortly sent down to make room for Rodrigo Lopez. Valbuena is only 25 years old. The infielder is not going to be an everyday player, but he could provide some value to the Major League team as super-utility player. Valbuena is a name to watch in the event that either Jeff Baker or Blake DeWitt are traded.