New Orleans 10 @ Iowa Cubs 5 (13 innings)
Logan Watkins was 1-6 with a strikeout today. He's been ice cold as of late, and his line now sits at .227/.343/.387. Repeat for Dave Sappelt. Brett Jackson went 4-6 with a home run and no strikeouts. He's only had 8 strikeouts in his last 10 games. Ready for the big show, right? Brent Lillibridge went 0-5 with 3 strikeouts. Steve Clevenger returned with a double and 3 RBI. If he gets called up, it'll be interesting to see what they do with Cody Ransom. Clevenger can play the corners, and Ransom used to play up the middle, but hasn't in recent years and is ancient. It's hard to DFA a guy who has played really well for you, but if Clevenger is called up it'll be for his ability to play CINF and not C (as the Castillo/Navarro tandem has worked out fairly well so far) and that means you still don't have a real backup for Castro/Barney. I am loving the fact that Ian Stewart isn't starting even when Vitters is out of the lineup. He was 0-1 with a strikeout as a PH.
Nick Struck had a really rough outing (and he's had a rough year). He allowed 13 baserunners and 5 runs in 5 innings. After that, the Cubs bullpen put together 7 scoreless innings together (Jeffry Antigua with 2.1, Brian Schlitter with 1.2 (and looking nice after his promotion), and Hisanori Takahashi with 3). Eduardo Sanchez gave it all away with 5 earned in 1 inning, though.
Jackson Generals 0 @ Tennessee Smokies 2 (7 innings, Game 1 of DH)
This game was quick. 1-6 in the order each had a hit and no walks, and the two RBI were from Ronald Torreyes and Arismendy Alcantara. The former had a double. Christian Villanueva had a triple to keep up his torrid pace. I was going to say "Don't look now, but Newhouse has a .777 OPS," but someone in the comments already called me out on that bullshit once. Smokies had 4 doubles in this one.
Kyle Hendricks made the Generals look foolish in this one, with his 2nd shutout in 3 starts (both 7 innings). He allowed 7 hits and a walk and struck out 7. Hendricks has the second lowest FIP in the Southern League (2.60) as well as the second lowest ERA (2.20). He doesn't strike out a ton of hitters but it still 14th in the league in K% (20.8%). At 23, he's age-appropriate and could stand to be promoted sooner rather than later. Hey, Cubs FO, how about DFA'ing Chris Rusin, and if he's claimed, promoting Hendricks to the rotation?
The Smokies faced uber-prospect Taijuan Walker in this game and acquitted themselves well. 5 of his 6 allowed hits were for extra bases.
Jackson Generals 1 @ Tennessee Smokies 7 (7 innings)
A.J. Morris got the start in the 2nd game, but probably only because they didn't want to pitch a guy on short rest or something like that. He allowed a single run over 4.1 innings, so an impressive performance. Tony Zych and Kevin Rhoderick both went 1.1 innings and neither allowed a run.
Ronald Torreyes had a great day at the plate. He went 3-3 with a double, 2 RBI, and 2 run. Christian Villanueva, batting cleanup, added his 2nd home run of the day to go along with another single. Alcantara had the day off.
Jorge Soler had one error coming into this game and 3 leaving it. He went 1-3. Javier Baez went 1-4 with a double and two strikeouts. The only guy who had a good game was Yaniel Cabezas, who batted ninth and had a pair of doubles.
Zach Cates went 5 strong innings, allowing only 2 runs (1 earned) including a leadoff homer to Alen Hanson. He did only strike out 2. Yao-Lin Wang surrendered the other 3 runs off of a 3-run blast with 2 outs in the 8th. Tough life.
Albert Almora had a terrible game by Almora standards, only going 1-4 with a walk. He also stole a base and was caught stealing. Gioskar Amaya had a pair of hits at the top of the order, but also had an error. Dan Vogelbach was 0-5. Jeimer Candelario was 1-4 with a walk and an RBI. Rock Shoulders had a nice game and he needed one, going 2-4 with a walk. He played DH today. Reggie Golden had his first home run in meaningful baseball this year, and also went 2-4.
Dillon Maples had the start and was great. He went 5 innings and allowed 2 hits and 3 walks, no runs. He struck out 7. Lendy Castillo then came out to shit the bed, and did so spectacularly. He allowed 5 runs and records two outs. Justin Amlung got 3 whole outs when he allowed 5 runs, so he was 50% better than Castillo. Nathan Dorris finally stopped the bleeding; he didn't allow either of his inherited runners to score and pitched 2.1 great innings.
The Cubs stole 4 bases in this game, but Jorge Mateo for the Yankees stole 4 by himself.