Results tagged ‘ Iowa Cubs ’

6/29 Dempster making progress

Ryan Dempster played catch Friday, and could throw off the mound Saturday or Sunday, but he will not be ready until sometime after the All-Star break. Dempster, on the disabled list since June 16 with a sore right lat, said Friday he’s making progress.

“It won’t take me long once I get going,” Dempster said. “I haven’t said, ‘This date’ because if I feel good, it could be sooner than that. I’m completely pain free. I just don’t know how I’m going to feel throwing.”

Randy Wells subbed for Dempster for two starts but he was designated for assignment on Wednesday. The Cubs need another starter Tuesday against the Braves and manager Dale Sveum said the options include Casey Coleman, who was currently in the bullpen, and Chris Volstad, who was pitching for Triple-A Iowa. Volstad was sent to Iowa after opening the season 0-6 with a 7.46 ERA in eight starts with the Cubs. In eight starts at Iowa, Volstad was 2-3 with a 4.44 ERA, giving up 25 earned runs on 59 hits and 12 walks while striking out 41 over 50 2/3 innings.

– Carrie Muskat

6/28 Minor League report & All-Star Vitters

Chris Rusin gave up eight runs on eight hits over four innings in Iowa’s 10-6 loss to Oklahoma City. Josh Vitters was 2-for-4 with a double and triple, and now has a 10-game hitting streak. Vitters was named to the Pacific Coast League All-Star team, selected as a reserve for the 25th annual game, to be held July 11. Ty Wright drove in three runs.

Tennessee lost, 11-0, to Birmingham. Dae-Eun Rhee gave up six runs on seven hits over four innings and took the loss. The Smokies made some roster moves. Catcher Juan Apodaca will rejoin the team, right-handed pitcher Alberto Cabrera was promoted to Iowa, and catcher Luis Flores announced his retirement from baseball.

Austin Kirk threw six shutout innings and Greg Rohan went 5-for-5 in Daytona’s 12-1 win over St. Lucie. Matt Szczur hit his second home run, a grand slam in the fifth, and finished with three hits. Rohan hit two doubles and drove in two runs. He leads the Florida State League with 63 RBIs.

Jose Rosario gave up three runs on nine hits over five innings in Peoria’s 8-3 loss to Clinton. Dustin Geiger extended his hitting streak to 12 games and Paul Hoilman hit a RBI double.

Tayler Scott gave up five runs, none earned, on six hits over 3 1/3 innings in Boise’s 6-2 loss to Spokane. Marco Hernandez and Shawon Dunston Jr. each had two hits.

David Bote hit his first pro home run in Mesa’s 5-4 win over the Angels. Bote finished with three RBIs.

– Carrie Muskat

6/27 Minor League report

Frankie De La Cruz gave up three runs on five hits over five innings in Iowa’s 3-1 loss to Round Rock on Tuesday. Josh Vitters did extend his hitting streak to a season-high nine games with a single in the first.

Michael Burgess hit two home runs, and Michael Brenly and Jae-Hoon Ha hit one apiece in Tennessee’s 11-6 win over Birmingham. Nicholas Struck got the win, giving up four runs on four hits and four walks over six innings. Burgess reached base four times, going 3-for-3 and drawing a walk. Brenly had three hits and two RBIs. Ha, who will play in the All-Star Futures Game, had two hits and three RBIs.

P.J. Francescon gave up two runs on seven hits over six innings in Daytona’s 4-3 loss to St. Lucie. Rebel Ridling and John Andreoli each had two hits.

Starling Peralta gave up two runs on eight hits over seven innings in Peoria’s 7-2 over Clinton. Dustin Geiger and Paul Hoilman each had two hits.

James Pugliese gave up two runs on three hits over 4 2/3 innings in Boise’s 3-1 loss to Spokane. Roderick Shoulders drove in the Hawks only run.

Bijan Rademacher homered in Mesa’s 9-4 loss to the Dodgers.

– Carrie Muskat

6/26 Minor League report

Brooks Raley gave up one run on five hits over seven innings in Iowa’s 2-1 win over Round Rock. Josh Vitters hit his 12th home run, extending his hitting streak to eight games. He has five homers and 14 RBIs in June. Rafael Dolis pitched the ninth for his third save.

Trey McNutt gave up one run on two hits over two innings in Tennessee’s 11-3 loss to Jacksonville in the makeup of a suspended game. Jae-Hoon Ha, who will play in the All-Star Futures Game, had two hits, as did Junior Lake. In the second game, Dallas Beeler gave up one run on three hits over 3 1/3 innings in Tennessee’s 10-3 loss.

Matt Loosen gave up three runs on two hits and two walks over six innings in Daytona’s 7-3 win over St. Lucie. He struck out seven. Arismendy Alcantara hit his fourth homer. In the second game, Kyler Burke gave up three runs on five hits over five innings in a 4-3, 12-inning win. Dustin Harrington delivered a RBI double in the 12th for the game winner.

Zach Cates gave up one run on five hits over 4 2/3 innings in Peoria’s 2-1 win over Clinton. Wes Darvill and Yasiel Balaguert each had two hits.

Jose Arias gave up one run on three hits over five innings in Boise’s 4-1 loss to Spokane. Gioskar Amaya had two hits and scored a run.

Mesa scored four runs in the seventh to post a 6-4 win over the Indians. Trey Martin, Tim Saunders and Jacob Rogers each had two hits.

– Carrie Muskat

6/25 Iowa Cubs win

Brooks Raley gave up one run on four hits over seven innings to help Iowa beat Round Rock, 2-1, on Monday in Des Moines. It was Raley’s third straight quality start. Josh Vitters drove in both runs. He extended his hit streak to eight games with an RBI single in the first to score Alfredo Amezaga. Vitters added a solo homer as well. He was the only Iowa player with a multi-hit game. Rafael Dolis recorded the save with a scoreless ninth.

– Carrie Muskat 

6/25 Rizzo to join Cubs Tuesday

Anthony Rizzo is coming. The Cubs’ top prospect who was batting .342 at Triple-A Iowa and leading the Pacific Coast League with 23 home runs will join the big league team on Tuesday when they play host to the Mets at Wrigley Field.  The first baseman started for Iowa on Monday against Round Rock in Des Moines but was pulled in the fourth inning. He has 62 RBIs and an OPS of 1.101. This month, he’s hitting .316 with six homers and 16 RBIs. Only Alfonso Soriano has matched those numbers for the Cubs in June, hitting seven homers with 16 RBIs.

– Carrie Muskat

6/23 Rizzo watch

In late April, I went to Des Moines to watch Triple-A Iowa play. I was talking to one of the Cubs coaches, and the topic was Anthony Rizzo. The first baseman was getting rave reviews on his defensive work, on his pre-game routine, on his hitting. Was Rizzo ready for the big leagues? The coach said: “The only problem will be you.”

He didn’t mean me personally, but the media. The hype surrounding Rizzo’s potential call-up has been off the charts. I’m surprised no one has interviewed his grade school teacher in Ft. Lauderdale, although that story could be coming Sunday. When Rizzo was promoted to the Padres last June, he was batting .365 at Triple-A Tucson. He struggled in the big leagues, batting .143 in 35 games, and was sent back to the Minor Leagues. When he was recalled in September, he batted .133 in 14 games. GM Jed Hoyer blamed himself, saying Rizzo faced high expectations when promoted, and still needed time to develop.

Moving Bryan LaHair to the outfield for the White Sox series was a sign that Rizzo is close. When? Theo Epstein wants to make sure the timing is right.

“You have to look at what happened last year,” Epstein said. “[Rizzo] had great numbers and was rushed a little bit and came up and struggled so its important to put players in position to succeed, and always put your Major League club in position to succeed. … Those things you don’t want to rush into, there’s more to development than numbers.”

Dale Sveum has been checking Rizzo’s stats and video all year. The first baseman has lowered his hands, and gotten better results. On Friday, Rizzo missed hitting for the cycle by home run, going 3-for-5 with three RBIs. He’s batting .355 overall, including .384 with runners in scoring position. Against lefties, he’s batting .338 (25-for-74), and against right-handers, he’s batting .362 (63-for-174). He has 23 homers, 18 doubles and 62 RBIs. Wouldn’t those numbers look good in the Cubs lineup?

Rizzo is very polished, very poised for a 22-year-old (he turns 23 Aug. 8). He’s going to be the center of attention, and every at-bat, every strikeout, every hit will be dissected and discussed. Nothing can prepare him for that. He’s not the savior; he’s a very talented first baseman with a ton of potential who could be one of the building blocks for Theo Epstein’s foundation for sustained success.

That’s Kerry Wood in the center of the media scrum at his retirement announcement above. I remember the build up surrounding Wood when he was promoted in ’98. The expectations soared after his 20-strikeout game in his fifth Major League start. The only Cubs player I can recall being more hyped than Rizzo was Mark Prior. Rizzo already has his first Major League hit and home run, collecting those firsts with the Padres last year. If he gets off to a slow start, will fans and the media be patient? Ryne Sandberg did not get a hit in his first six games with the Cubs.

When the Cubs call the first baseman up, they want it to be for good. Here’s hoping the timing is right, and I’m not a problem.

– Carrie Muskat

6/13 Rizzo hot topic

Dale Sveum is checking the boxscores just like everyone else to see what Anthony Rizzo did that day at Triple-A Iowa. Rizzo, who did not play Wednesday after bruising his right knee on Tuesday, was batting .367 and currently leads the Pacific Coast League with 22 home runs. He’s hit four homers in his last three games. Sveum and Theo Epstein, the Cubs president of baseball operations, have talked about the highly touted first baseman often.

“We haven’t come up with any set time yet [to call him up],” Sveum said Wednesday. “Obviously, we’ve talked about it. Still, we haven’t come up with that set date.”

It’s hard to ignore his offensive numbers, especially when the big league team is struggling.

“His name is brought up pretty much every day,” Sveum said. “He’s that guy — you get your email and look at the Minor League report right away to see if he hit another home run, which he’s done quite a bit lately.”

– Carrie Muskat

6/6 Minor League report

Frankie De La Cruz gave up three hits over two innings in Iowa’s 4-3 loss Tuesday to Oklahoma City. Jay Jackson threw five innings of one-run, four-hit relief, while striking out four.

Eric Jokisch threw seven shutout innings, giving up five hits, in Tennessee’s 12-3 win over Montgomery. Logan Watkins had two hits and two RBIs, and Jae-Hoon Ha had two hits and three rBIs.

Austin Kirk gave up one run on four hits over six innings in Daytona’s 6-5 win over Brevard County. Nelson Perez had two hits, including his 10th home run. Rubi Silva also had two hits.

Peoria had Tuesday off, and will play Cedar Rapids Wednesday.

– Carrie Muskat

5/6 Minor moves

Infielder Jonathan Mota was promoted to Triple-A Iowa on Sunday, and pitcher Daniel Berlind was released by the Cubs. Mota was hitting .293 with three homers and 10 RBIs in 21 games at Double-A Tennessee. Berlind appeared in one game with Iowa after being promoted from Tennessee on April 30.

The Smokies made a move and added infielder Junior Lake to the roster. Lake, 22, will see his first action of the season.  He spent last year between Class A Daytona and Tennessee. Lake had been bothered by back problems and was rehabbing at the Cubs extended Spring Training facility in Mesa, Ariz.

– Carrie Muskat

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