Coghlan rejoins #Cubs; Minor League moves

Chris Coghlan is back with the Cubs. The Cubs dealt Arismendy Alcantara to the A’s for Coghlan, 30, who spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons with Chicago. This season, Coghlan appeared in 51 games with the A’s and was batting .146 (23-for-158) with five doubles, five homers and 14 RBI. He has started at second, third, right field and left field.

Alcantara, 24, was batting .264 (52-for-197) with nine doubles, five triples, five homers, 21 RBI and 21 stolen bases in 53 games with Triple-A Iowa this season.

Why Coghlan? Tommy La Stella may be headed to the DL with a hamstring strain. He was injured running the bases Tuesday in Philadelphia.

Minor League roster moves:

The Cubs have traded outfielder Shawon Dunston Jr. to the Giants for cash considerations or a player to be named later. Dunston, 23, was batting .219 at Class A Myrtle Beach with six doubles, four triples and seven stolen bases.

Pitchers Corey Black and Miguel Mejia were promoted from Double-A Tennessee to Triple-A Iowa. Black has a 3.18 ERA and eight saves in 20 relief outings. Mejia rejoins Iowa. He posted a 2.70 eRA in eight relief appearances with the Smokies.

Also, pitcher Aaron Brooks joined Iowa’s roster on a Major League rehab assignment, and relievers Jean Machi and Brandon Gomes were released.

 

#Cubs Minor League report

Wednesday’s games

Iowa had the day off, and will open a four-game series against Round Rock on Thursday. Rob Zastryzny (1-0, 4.15 ERA) is scheduled to make his fourth start for Iowa.

Tyler Skulina gave up one run over seven innings in Tennessee’s 4-1 win over Mississippi. Cael Brockmeyer had two RBI and Stephen Bruno and Victor Caratini each had two hits.

Myrtle Beach had Wednesday off, and opens a four-game series at Lynchburg on Thursday. Jake Stinnett (4-2, 4.15 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Pelicans.

South Bend lost, 6-4, to Dayton. Adbert Alzolay gave up six runs over 5 1/3 innings. Carlos Sepulveda had two hits and one RBI and Eloy Jimenez hit a double, walked and scored two runs. Jesse Hodges finished with two RBI.

#Cubs Minor League news

Infielder Jeimer Candelario and outfielder Mark Zagunis have been promoted from Double-A Tennessee to Triple-A Iowa, and infielder Daniel Lockhart and outfielder Trey Martin were promoted from Class A Myrtle Beach to Double-A Tennessee.

Infielder David Bote has been assigned to Myrtle Beach from Triple-A Iowa and infielder Andrew Ely has been promoted from Class A South Bend to Myrtle Beach.

*Right-handed pitchers Trevor Clifton, Zach Hedges and Jake Stinnett have been selected to represent Myrtle Beach in the 2016 California-Carolina League All-Star Game in Lake Elsinore, Calif. The game will be played June 21.

*Six Tennessee players were named Southern League Mid-Season All-Stars for the 2016 All-Star Game, which will be played June 21. Representing the Smokies are pitcher Paul Blackburn, third baseman Jeimer Candelario, catcher Victor Caratini, pitcher Brad Markey, second baseman Chesny Young and outfielder Mark Zagunis.

#Cubs and Lackey vs. Phillies in finale

John Lackey will close the Cubs’ series against the Phillies on Wednesday, and Albert Almora Jr. will make his first big league start. Here’s the lineup:

Fowler CF
Heyward RF
Bryant 3B
Rizzo 1B
Zobrist 2B
Almora LF
Montero C
Baez SS
Lackey P

With Almora’s arrival, the Cubs have had their first-round selections from the 2011 (Javier Baez), 2012, 2013 (Kris Bryant) and 2014 (Kyle Schwarber) Drafts play this season.

This is the fifth season in which the Cubs have had four of their first-round selections play. It also took place in:

2011: Kerry Wood, Luis Montanez, Tyler Colvin, Andrew Cashner

2003: Doug Glanville, Kerry Wood, Corey Patterson, Mark Prior

1990: Shawon Dunston, Derrick May, Mike Harkey, Lance Dickson

1988: Dunston, Harkey, Drew Hall, Rafael Palmeiro

Almora is the first rookie to play for the Cubs this season, doing so in the team’s 57th game. According to baseball historian Ed Hartig, this is the latest the Cubs have gone into a season before using a rookie, as at least one had played for Chicago within the first 20 games in each of its previous campaigns.

Looking ahead to the Cubs’ series vs. the Braves, here are the pitching matchups:

Friday: RHP Jason Hammel (7-1, 2.14) vs. RHP Bud Norris (1-7, 5.28)
Saturday: RHP Jake Arrieta (9-1, 1.80) vs. RHP Matt Wisler (2-6, 3.98)
Sunday: LHP Jon Lester (7-3, 2.06) vs. TBD

 

#Cubs Minor League report

Tuesday’s games

Matt Murton had two hits and two RBI to help Iowa beat Memphis, 6-5. Michael Wagner struck out seven over four innings. Munenori Kawasaki had two hits and one RBI.

Paul Blackburn gave up four earned runs over 5 2/3 innings in Tennessee’s 5-1 loss to Mississippi. Jose Rosario struck out three over 1 1/3 scoreless innings in relief.

Myrtle Beach swept a doubleheader against Potomac. Erick Leal won the first game, and Jeremy Null took the second game. Rashad Crawford was a combined 3-for-7 with two RBI in the two games. Gleyber Torres reached in both games and finished 2-for-5 with two walks, three runs scored and a stolen base. Ian Happ also finished with two hits.

South Bend beat Dayton, 4-3, in 12 innings. Bryant Flete hit a game-winning sac fly and finished with two RBI in the game. Carlos Sepulveda had three hits. Eloy Jimenez and Andrew Ely each collected two hits.

#Cubs Minor League report

Monday’s results

Dan Vogelbach hit a two-run homer in the fourth in Iowa’s 6-2 loss to Memphis. Drew Rucinski gave up two earned runs over 5 2/3 innings. Willson Contreras had two hits and drew a walk, but had to leave the game with a foot injury. Reports out of Des Moines say Contreras is not expected to go on the disabled list.

Duane Underwood gave up two earned runs over 4 2/3 innings in Tennessee’s 3-1 loss to Mississippi. Cael Brockmeyer had two hits. Underwood walked five and struck out six.

Myrtle Beach’s game against Potomac was postponed because of inclement weather. The teams were to play a doubleheader on Tuesday.

South Bend had Monday off, and opens a three-game series against Dayton on Tuesday.

#Cubs and Hendricks face Phillies

Kyle Hendricks gets the start Tuesday night for the Cubs in Game 2 of their three-game series vs. the Phillies. Here’s the lineup:

Fowler CF

Heyward RF

Bryant LF

Rizzo 1B

Zobrist 2B

La Stella 3B

Montero C

Russell SS

Hendricks P

Cubs starting pitchers have given up three or fewer runs in 11-straight games, posting a 1.32 ERA (11 ER/75 IP) in this stretch while going 8-1.

Cubs starters have a 2.33 ERA (93 ER/360 IP), by far the lowest mark in the Majors. The Mets starting rotation is second with a 3.17 ERA.

The Cubs join the Cardinals and Nationals as the only Major League clubs to utilize five starting pitchers this season.

The Cubs are the first team to reach 40 wins this season. The 40-16 record is the franchise’s second-best start to a season since 1900. This is bested only by the 1907 Cubs who won 44 of their first 56 contests (44-12). This is the best start by a Major League team since the Mariners were 44-12 to begin 2001.

 

#Cubs Minor League report

Sunday’s games

Matt Murton had two hits, including a solo home run, and David Frietas hit a two-run homer in Iowa’s 6-1 win over Memphis. Alex Sanabia gave up one run over five innings for the win. Juan Perez had two hits and finished with two RBI, and Murton finished with two RBI. Iowa now has won nine in a row, its longest streak since 1991.

Jacob Hannemann hit a two-run homer and finished with four RBI and Jeimer Candelario added a solo blast in Tennessee’s 11-6 win over Mississippi. Miguel Mejia earned the win in relief.

Trevor Clifton struck out six and gave up four hits over six scoreless innings in Myrtle Beach’s 15-0 win over Potomac. Yasiel Balaguert, Gioskar Amaya and Ian Happ each homered. Happ’s blast was a three-run shot. Daniel Lockhart finished with three hits and one RBI.

Kyle Twomey gave up one run over five innings in South Bend’s 2-1 win over West Michigan. P.J. Higgins and Jesse Hodges each hit a double and each scored a run.

#Cubs and Arrieta face D-Backs in finale

Jake Arrieta will close the Cubs series and homestand on Sunday when he faces the D-Backs at Wrigley Field. Anthony Rizzo and Jason Heyward both get the day off. Here’s the lineup:

Fowler CF

Zobrist 2B

Bryant 1B

Soler LF

Baez 3B

Russell SS

Szczur RF

Montero C

Arrieta P

The Cubs are 8-1 so far on the 10-game homestand, and a win on Sunday would give them a homestand of at least 10 games with one or fewer losses for the first time since April 14-26, 1970, when the team was unbeaten in a 10-game homestand. (Thanks to STATS Inc.)

The Cubs are off to the best start by a Major League team since the Mariners were 42-12 to begin 2001.

Arrieta is 9-0 in 11 starts this season, and will try to become the fifth pitcher in the last 75 years to total 10 wins within his first 12 starts of a campaign. Others who have accomplished the feat include Roger Clemens in both 1986 and 1997; Andy Hawkins in 1985; Juan Marichal in 1966; and Don Newcombe in 1955.

A win on Sunday would make Arrieta the quickest Cub to 10 wins by calendar date since Grover Alexander recorded his 10th victory of the 1920 campaign on May 28.

Looking ahead, the Cubs open a three-game series in Philadelphia on Monday. Here are the pitching matchups:

Monday: LHP Jon Lester (6-3, 2.29) vs. LHP Adam Morgan (1-4, 7.07)

Tuesday: RHP Kyle Hendricks (4-4, 2.84) vs. RHP Jerad Eickhoff (2-8, 3.93)

Wednesday: RHP John Lackey (6-2, 2.88) vs. RHP Vince Velasquez (5-2, 3.67)

#Cubs Minor League report

Saturday’s games

Jake Buchanan gave up four hits over seven scoreless innings in Iowa’s 4-0 win over Memphis. Willson Contreras hit a double and drove in a run. Arismendy Alcantara stole four bases and had two hits. Matt Murton had two RBI.

Cael Brockmeyer hit a go-ahead, two-run homer in the seventh to help Tennessee beat Jackson, 2-1. Victor Caratini had two hits. Brad Markey started and gave up one run over six innings.

Zach Hedges gave up 10 hits but only two runs over 6 2/3 innings in Myrtle Beach’s 6-2 win over Potomac. Jason Vosler and Yasiel Balaguert each homered. Vosler hit a solo homer in the second and Balaguert hit a two-run homer in the third. Rashad Crawford had three hits and one RBI.

South Bend swept its doubleheader against West Michigan. Ian Rice hit a two-run homer in the first inning of both games. He now has 13 RBI in his last nine games. Carlos Sepulveda had three hits and one RBI in the first game. Donnie Dewees had three hits and three RBI in the first game. Casey Bloomquist made his first start of the season in the second game and gave up one run over five innings.

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