Chicago Cubs Minor League Recap: Cubs' Affiliates go 0-4 but Ben Brown Bounces Back

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Chicago Cubs Minor League Recap: Cubs' Affiliates go 0-4 But Ben Brown Bounces Back

  1. Iowa Cubs (AAA)
  2. Tennessee Smokies (AA)
  3. South Bend Cubs (A+)
  4. Myrtle Beach Pelicans (A)

Iowa Cubs (AAA)

Iowa Cubs fall to the Indianapolis Indians 5-1

Yesterday should have been the pitcher’s matchup we’d love to see. Quinn Priester, former first-round pick for the Pirates going up against probably the best-performing pitcher the Cubs have had in the minors this year in Ben Brown. Unfortunately, The Cubs bullpen detracted from that excitement a little bit giving up four earned runs over the final five innings and the offense couldn’t push across a run until the 8th inning, but it was still nice to see Brown put his last start behind him and get back to the player we saw in Tennessee to start the season. 

Nelson Velazquez (OF) went 3-4 with three singles and a run scored.

Yonathan Perlaza (OF) went 2-4 with a double. 

Jared Young (1B) went 2-3 with a double.

Ben Brown (RHP) went four innings, gave up one earned run on two hits and two walks, and struck out six. The Iowa Cubs just threw Kyle Hendricks, Hayden Wesneski, and Ben Brown in three consecutive games and I have a hard time imagining too many AAA teams that can trot out that level of skill back to back to back. In an ideal world, we see Brown at the major league level when he’s proven that games like yesterday are the norm and not games like the one he had last week.

Tennessee Smokies (AA)

Tennessee Smokies fall to the Pensacola Blue Wahoos 3-1

The Smokies took an early lead in this one, jumping on M.D. Johnson in the first inning for a run but Porter Hodge quickly relinquished that lead in the bottom of the first and the Blue Wahoos pulled ahead for good after scoring two more runs in the bottom of the fifth off of Hodge and Luke Little. The trend for yesterday’s games all around the Cubs affiliates was an inability to score runs so three would be enough for Pensacola to come away with the W.

Andy Weber (SS) went 1-4 with a double and the lone run scored for the Smokies. 

Cole Roederer (OF) went 2-4 with an RBI and has now gotten on base four times in the last two games since coming back to the Smokies lineup. 

Haydn McGeary (1B) may have gone hitless but he did draw three walks, bringing his OBP for the year to a robust .416.

Bradlee Beesley (OF) went 3-4 with a double and now his OPS up to 1.036 on the season despite a measly .224 batting average which suggests he’s drawing a lot of walks and hitting for power.

Porter Hodge (RHP) saw his season record drop to 0-4 on the night after going 4.1 innings and giving up two earned runs on three hits, and two walks. That being said, he did strike out seven batters which is a positive sign, so if he can limit the hard contact moving forward there shouldn’t be much cause for concern. 

Luke Little (LHP) came in immediately following Hodge and finished up the fifth inning but was unable to escape. He gave up a hit and two walks and let a run score in just ⅔ of an inning of work. That being said, this game did see the Smokies feature Little in 5th and Hunter Bigge in the 9th, which is just fun. 

South Bend Cubs (A+)

South Bend Cubs fall to the Beloit Sky Carp 6-2

South Bend had more hits than Beloit in this one, but they never held the lead and allowed the Sky Carp to score three insurance runs in the bottom of the eighth which made it an insurmountable deficit to come back from. The usual suspects were great again in this one though, so it’s good to see the early season results not be fluky.

James Triantos (2B) went 2-4 with a home run giving him two homers in as many days.

Bryce Ball (1B) went 1-3 with a single and a walk.

Christian Franklin (OF) 1-2 with a double, two walks and a run scored and got caught trying to steal 2nd base.

Ezequiel Pagan (OF) went 2-5 with two singles but he also got caught trying to steal 2nd base for the 5th time already this season. Running in to that many outs, regardless of how fast you may be, can’t continue to happen. 

Brandon Birdsell (RHP) was fine in his start yesterday. The 5th round pick out of Texas Tech went four innings, gave up two hits and two walks and struck out six while giving up two earned runs. It was almost an identical night to what Porter Hodge and Ben Brown did at AA and AAA respectively, and it yielded the same result: a loss. 

Myrtle Beach Pelicans (A)

Myrtle Beach Pelicans fall to the Augusta Green Jackets 3-1

Much like South Bend, the Pelicans outhit their opponent yesterday but also never held a lead in a game that they lost 3-1. While the Cubs affiliates went an impressive 6-0 (two doubleheaders) on Saturday, they went 0-4 against those same teams on Sunday, scoring a combined five runs in those games.

Jefferson Encarnacion (OF) went 3-4 with a triple and scored the Pelicans lone run of the game in the 7th inning. 

Moises Ballesteros (C) went 1-4 with a double. Once Miguel Amaya makes it to the majors Ballesteros will become the next catching prospect that Cubs fans will fawn over and with good reason. 

Reivaj García (2B) went 2-3 with two singles and a walk and now has five hits in the last two days.

Felix Stevens (OF) went 1-2 with a single and two walks.

Brody McCullough (RHP) stuck with the rest of the starters from the Cubs’ affiliates on the night. He went 4.2 innings, gave up one earned run on two hits and two walks and struck out eight.

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