Down on Cubs Farm: Ben Zobrist to Iowa, Alzolay getting back to form, Marquez's gem, more

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by - Staff Writer -
Ben Zobrist is still working his way back to the Cubs
Ben Zobrist is still working his way back to the Cubs

The Cubs delivered a memorable night on the farm going 3-1 on the evening. The best thing about this record is that all four starting pitchers were lights out allowing a total of 3R and 1ER in their outings with only the Eugene pen having a bad night.

IOWA CUBS 5 – Salt Lake Bees 2: Still looking to regain his form since his injury, Adbert Alzolay returned to the hill Tuesday and showed great promise. In four innings, Alzolay allowed 1ER on 3H with no walks and 7K in his ND effort. Dillon Maples picked up the win in relief as the Cubs moved to 66-55 with their 5-2 win.

With both teams being held scoreless through two innings, Iowa busted out the bats in the third as that inning was enough for them to pick up the win. With one swing of the bat, Phillip Evans got Iowa on the board with his 16th homer of the season as the Cubs never looked back 3-0. Addison Russell followed that up later that inning with his seventh homer of the season putting Iowa up 4-0. It was the third straight game with a homer for Russell as he is swinging a great bat.

Jared Walsh put Salt Lake on the board in the fourth with his 30th of the season, but it was only a solo shot making things 4-1. P.J. Higgins pushed across the final run for Iowa in the sixth with a sacrifice fly as the lead grew to 5-1. Roberto Pena connected for his sixth homer in the eighth to make it 5-2, but that was it as the Iowa bullpen was solid in relief.

With just five hits, Iowa certainly made them count as Evans led the way with two. Donnie Dewees, Russell, and Trent Giambrone connected for the teams other three hits. Robel Garcia was 0-3 with 1BB and 2K. The Danny Hultzen comeback continued with another scoreless frame as his ERA dropped to 1.32 with his third save. Iowa also received news Monday that Ben Zobrist will be joining them this weekend to continue his rehab stint.

TENNESSEE SMOKIES 6 – Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp 1: A big first inning is all the Smokies would need to coast to victory as they knocked off Jacksonville 6-1 moving to 50-70. Looking to shake off his AA debut, Jack Patterson got back to his old self allowing just 1R (0ER) in 5 2/3 innings to secure his first AA win of the season. The offense took care of the rest as they exploded immediately in the first inning.

Already with two men on base, recently promoted Tyler Payne connected for the single putting the Smokies up for good 1-0. With a wild pitch bringing home what proved to be the game-winning run, Eddy Martinez added the dagger with his third homer in the first as the Smokies lead doubled to 4-0 after one inning of play.

That score would hold up until the top of the sixth when Jacksonville was finally able to break through on Patterson. It was the Tennessee defense that brought home the run as a potential inning-ending grounder turned into a throwing error to make it 4-1. Martinez responded in the bottom of the sixth to not only cap off his big game, but the scoring in general as his two-run single pushed the lead to 6-1 before Ben Hecht, and Michael Rucker closed things out.

Martinez was the engine that made the Smokies offense tick, as he went 2-3 with 4 RBI’s in the win. Charcer Burks and Jared Young got in on the multi-hit fun as that trio had two hits each in the win. Payne and Nico Hoerner tallied the other two hits with Vimael Machin going hitless in the win.

MYRTLE BEACH PELICANS 8 – Potomac Nationals 0 (5 innings): Not even weather could stop the run Brailyn Marquez is on as he went the distance in a five-inning shortened game to improve to 2-0 since his promotion. Not only did he go the distance, but Marquez allowed just three hits to go with four K’s as he has now gone an impressive five straight starts without allowing a run.

Offensively speaking, the Pelicans bats exploded in the first as they provided more than enough offense in the win. With a pair of runners on base, Cam Balego got the scoring started with a double as the Pelicans jumped in front 1-0. Miguel Amaya and Luke Reynolds each added doubles of their own after that as the Pelicans lead grew to 4-0.

With Marquez continuing to pitch the way he has of late, the 4-0 lead felt like 10-0 as the Nationals had no answers. After Carlos Sepulveda extended the lead to 5-0 in the fourth, Amaya recorded his third RBI of the night as his bases-loaded walk made it 6-0 Myrtle Beach. A fifth-inning RBI single from Wladimir Guerrero and Sepulveda triple capped off the scoring as the Pelicans never trailed in the 8-0 win.

The top of the order proved to be trouble with both Sepulveda and Grant Fennell connecting for two hits each. Aramis Ademan added two hits of his own with Balego, Amaya, Reynolds, and Galindo picking up the other four. Amaya also took that walk as he led the team with three RBI’s in the win as the Pelicans are now 47-71.

SOUTH BEND CUBS: Off Travel Day

EUGENE EMERALDS 0 – Vancouver Canucks 9: To say it was a rough night for the Emeralds is an understatement as they collected just two hits in the 9-0 loss falling to 26-31 for the season. After Kohl Franklin got the start and allowed only one unearned run in his three innings, it was a pair of rough innings that did Eugene in with the pen allowing 8ER in six innings.

Only down 2-0 entering the fifth is when Vancouver began to pull away with an errant pickoff throw leading to another run. A few batters later saw Jesus Lopez leave the yard for his first homer of the season and just like that it was 5-0 in favor of the Canadians. The brunt of the damage was done in the ninth, however, as Vancouver pushed across four runs in that frame anchored by the Tanner Morris double to give the Canadians a rather comfortable 9-0 win.

The Emeralds not only managed just two hits but two baserunners as Vancouver pitching recorded 13K to go with 0BB. Fernando Kelli and Jonathan Soto were the lucky ones as each of them picked up one hit each in the loss. Both Edmond Americaan and Chase Strumpf went hitless in this one with Strumpf suffering the worst of it with 3K. Brandon Hughes was the lone bright spot out of the pen, tossing two perfect innings of relief with 3K.

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Tags: Adbert Alzolay, Dillon Maples, Phillip Evans, Addison Russell, Trent Giambrone, Robel Garcia, Ben Zobrist, Eddy Martinez, Ben Hecht, Michael Rucker, Charcer Burks, Jared Young, Vimael Machin, Brailyn Marquez, Cam Balego, Miguel Amaya, Luke Reynolds, Carlos Sepulveda, Aramis Ademan, Fernando Kelli
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