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#Cubs Minor League roundup

Saturday’s games

Christian Villanueva homered and drove in five runs in Iowa’s 9-8 loss to Colorado Springs. Matt Szczur and Taylor Teagarden each had three hits. Dallas Beeler made his first start since coming off the DL, and gave up six earned runs on five hits over four innings.

Tennessee totaled a sesaon-high 16 runs in a 16-10 win over Chattanooga. Dan Vogelbach and Stephen Bruno each homered. Vogelbach was 3-for-3 with three RBIs. Pin-Chieh Chen had three hits. Kyle Schwarber drove in two runs.

Paul Blackburn gave up four runs over five innings in Myrtle Beach’s 4-2 loss to Winston-Salem. Jacob Hannemann and Jeimer Candelario each had three hits.

South Bend beat Fort Wayne, 9-2. Charcer Burks had three RBIs and Cael Brockmeyer notched his 10th RBI of the season.

#Cubs lineup, pitching update and more

If you filled out a scorecard for Saturday’s game, and it didn’t get wet, you can use it Sunday. The Cubs lineup will be the same vs. the Reds in the series finale. No update on a make up date for the rain out yet. It’s sunny and beautiful in Cincy on Sunday. Here’s the lineup:

Fowler CF

Soler RF

Rizzo 1B

Bryant 3B

Montero C

Castro SS

Coghlan LF

Arrieta P

Russell 2B

* The Cubs have tweaked the rotation for the upcoming series vs. the Pirates. Jason Hammel will stay on his regular routine and go Monday, and be followed by Travis Wood and Kyle Hendricks on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively. Jon Lester will open the Cubs’ series vs.the Brewers on Friday.

#Cubs vs #Reds ppd. because of rain

Miguel Montero and Jorge Soler played dominoes. Anthony Rizzo posted a photo of himself with other 25-year-old-and-under teammates, Kris Bryant, Addison Russell, Starlin Castro and Soler. Joe Maddon had a little applesauce, some peanuts and a couple pieces of sushi.

The Cubs had plenty of down time Saturday at Great American Ball Park as they waited 4 hours 13 minutes before their game vs. the Reds was postponed because of rain. No make up date was announced. The Cubs return to Cincinnati July 20-22 and Sept. 29-Oct. 1.

The Reds wanted to play because the team was celebrating the 25th anniversary of the 1990 World Series championship squad, and had a sellout crowd at the ballpark.

“I know [the Reds] wanted to get it done for the full house and I totally get it, and I’m not going to denigrate the Reds for doing what they thought was the right thing to do,” Maddon said.

Saturday was the fourth rain delay of the season for the Reds, and all have been at Great American Ball Park. However, Saturday’s delay time nearly equaled the first three, which totaled 4 hours 23 minutes.

“The forecast has been so inconsistent all day,” Maddon said. “There was no way to believe it was not going to rain any more. I was originally told we were going to play at 2 [p.m. ET], and then 3:15 and then 4. I had three start times.”

The Cubs needed a specific start time for Jake Arrieta, who requires 40 minutes to prep. Maddon asked the umpires to at least give them a heads up regarding that, and they did.

“When you don’t have a specific game time, it’s hard to get into that groove,” Maddon said. “I thought the umpires did a great job in the end of trying to put this whole thing together.”

Arrieta did not throw a pitch, although he did share on Twitter that he wasn’t happy about the delay. Maddon said they saw Reds starter Anthony DeSclafani go to the bullpen twice in anticipation of the game starting. Arrieta (2-1, 1.74 ERA) and DeSclafani (2-0, 0.86 ERA) will square off Sunday in the series finale. The forecast calls for sunshine and temps in the low 60s.

This is the Cubs’ second game to be postponed because of rain. They still have to make up an April 7 game against the Cardinals.

At least two hours before the game was called, Maddon walked around left field to check the conditions.

“I’d heard the field drains well and I wanted to see it for myself,” he said. “It’s true. I want to compliment them on their drainage.”

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs rain delay selfies

Here’s what the Cubs do during rain delays — pose for photos.

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Upcoming #Cubs promotions at Wrigley

The Cubs return home Monday for a six-game homestand, starting with three against the Pirates. Wrigley Field will celebrate its football history this homestand in conjunction with the city of Chicago hosting the 2015 NFL Draft.

he first 10,000 fans at the May 1 game will receive a Wrigley Field Football presented by Wintrust Community Banks that commemorates 50 seasons of Chicago Bears football at the historic ballpark. NFL legends Michael Irvin and Kurt Warner will throw ceremonial first pitches Tuesday while NFL Network personalities Rich Eisen, Steve Mariucci and Melissa Stark will lead the seventh inning stretch. Former NFL great Ickey Woods will throw a first pitch the following day. Chicago Bears kicker Robbie Gould wraps up the homestand with a first pitch and seventh inning stretch on May 3.

The Cubs and Cubs Charities will continue this year’s “Let’s Give” campaign through several events and recognitions during the homestand. On Tuesday, the team will present a check to the Illinois Tornado Relief Fund from last week’s fundraising efforts at Wrigley Field. Firefighters from Kirkland, Ill., who have aided in tornado recovery efforts will be recognized on the field pregame.

On Wednesday, the Cubs and Robert R. McCormick Foundation will celebrate the 25th anniversary of Cubs Care during the annual Cubs Care Grant Luncheon in the Audi Club at Wrigley Field. Cubs Charities and Cubs Care will grant more than $1 million to nonprofit organizations serving those in need in the Chicago area. That evening, Cubs Charities will recognize personal fundraising efforts from individuals running Saturday’s Race to Wrigley Charity Run presented by ATI Physical Therapy. Proceeds from personal fundraising will support critical care needs for pediatric patients in Chicago. The top fundraising team and individual will be recognized during a pregame ceremony on the field.

On Friday, Cubs manager Joe Maddon will continue his “Respect Community” charity T-shirt initiative by representing Misericordia Heart of Mercy, a Cubs Charities grantee, during his post-game press conference.

Promotions:

* The first 10,000 fans attending the May 1 game at 1:20 p.m. CT vs. the Brewers will receive a Wrigley Field Football presented by Wintrust Community Banks. Beginning in the 7th inning, fans can visit the Cubs Store across from Wrigley Field to inflate the football after they depart the ballpark.

Wintrust is rallying Cubs fans to support Cubs Charities and beat the rival White Sox in the process through its “You Decide” crosstown campaign. For each fan who opens a Wintrust Cubs checking account, Wintrust will donate $25 to Cubs Charities. Fans also can participate in the competition by tweeting with the #DecideCubs hashtag. With each use, Wintrust will donate 25 cents to Cubs Charities. Wintrust will donate an additional $25,000 to the charity of the team whose fans open the most accounts. Fans may visit http://www.wintrust.com/youdecide to participate.

On May 3, the first 1,000 kids 13-and-under can run the bases post-game, weather permitting, as part of the team’s ongoing Kids Sundays at Wrigley Field.

#Cubs lineup – weather permitting

The start of Saturday’s game was delayed because of rain. Here’s the Cubs lineup:

Fowler CF

Soler RF

Rizzo 1B

Bryant 3B

Montero C

Castro SS

Coghlan LF

Arrieta P

Russell 2B

Lou Piniella on 1990 Reds

The Reds saluted the 1990 World Champion team on Saturday in a pre-game ceremony, but manager Lou Piniella was unable to attend. Piniella, 71, did send a hand-written letter to the team and its fans, which was read:

“Dear Players and Fans,

“My sincere apologies for not being there on this very special occasion. Needless to say Nineteen Ninety was a great year in Reds baseball history. Unfortunately, our nephew whom we are very close to is getting married this weekend in Key West. This trip has been planned by our family for a very long time. Naturally I am disappointed that I can’t be there to share in your joy reliving all those wonderful moments that made that season so amazing.

“To the players, you are very special to me, and I want to thank you again for your dedication, your professionalism and your commitment to winning.

“To the coaches and the entire organization, thank you so much for a job well done. We could not have done it without you.

“And to the fans .. what would a team be without support, your encouragement, your love. Thank you for all of that and a lot more. Please enjoy this wonderful tribute … and even though I’m not present my heart will be with you.

“Sincerely,

“Lou Piniella.”

* The Reds went 91-71 in 1990 to win the National League West, and swept the Athletics in the World Series that year.

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs lineup Fri 4/24

Jon Lester makes his fourth start of the season on Friday night when the Cubs open a three-game series against the Reds at Great American Ball Park. This will be a rematch of last week when Lester faced Mike Leake at Wrigley Field.

For manager Joe Maddon, it will help to see one of the NL Central teams again so he can familiarize himself with the players.

“Seeing these teams the next time through and watching how they do their thing helps,” Maddon said. “When I read 9a report) and can put a mental picture with the data, it really helps me a lot.”

Maddon also likes how tough the Central Division is.

“You want to play the toughest division — you get the young guys on board sooner,” Maddon said.

Here’s Friday’s Cubs lineup:

Fowler CF

Soler RF

Rizzo 1B

Bryant 3B

Coghlan LF

Castro SS

Ross C

Lester P

Russell 2B

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs Minor League roundup

Thursday’s games

Chris Valaika hit a two-run homer but it wasn’t enough as Iowa lost, 9-2, to New Orleans. Jeffry Antigua gave up four earned runs on seven hits over 3 2/3 innings.

Kyle Schwarber had three hits, including a home run and a double, to lead Tennessee to a 9-2 victory over Jackson. Felix Pena picked up the win, giving up two runs over 5 2/3 innings. For Schwarber, it was his third straight multi-hit game.

Daury Torrez threw seven shutout innings in Myrtle Beach’s 6-0 win over Winston-Salem. Jacob Hannemann had three hits and one RBI.

Erick Leal threw five shutout innings in South Bend’s 10-0 win over Lake County. Yasiel Balaguert had two hits, including a triple and double. Gleyber Torres had two hits, two RBIs and two stolen bases.

Final Pirates 5, #Cubs 4

Kyle Hendricks gave up three runs over 5 1/3 innings Thursday in the Cubs’ 5-4 loss to the Pirates. The two teams split the series at PNC Park, and the Cubs now have lost two in a row for the first time this season. Jonathan Herrera hit a two-run triple in the second and Addison Russell collected his first extra-base hit and RBI with a run-scoring double in the fourth, but that was about it. The Cubs loaded the bases in the fifth and Kris Bryant drew a walk to force in a run.

Bryant made his first start in center, and did OK. He had a tough time chasing down Josh Harrison’s double in the seventh. Harrison eventually scored the game-winning run.

“It took a left turn on him,” Joe Maddon said of Harrison’s hit. “It was like a two-iron. It hooked left and he had no chance with that.”

The Cubs needed Hendricks to go deeper to give the bullpen a breather.

“He’s still not as sharp as he can be,” Maddon said of Hendricks. “It would’ve been really nice to get six out of him today. The bullpen was a little short.”

Up next: The Cubs head to Cincinnati for a three-game series. Jon Lester opens it Friday against Mike Leake.

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