Triple-A Omaha won their season finale, beating Iowa, 7-3.
With two outs and nobody on base in the top of the first, the Storm Chasers scored four runs on four hits and a walk. Ruben Sosa capped the scoring with a two-run double. Leadoff hitter Billy Burns went 2-for-5 with an RBI. Frank Schwindel and Garin Cecchini each had two hits in the win. Schwindel drove in two runs, while Cecchini scored two runs.
That made a winner of starter Arnaldo Hernandez, who picked up his first Triple-A victory in his second start. He allowed a run on five hits and a walk over 5.2 innings. Hernandez struck out four. He left with two runners on base in the 6th inning in favor of Mark Peterson, who allowed an RBI double to the first batter he faced.
Triple-A Omaha beat Iowa, 7-5 in comeback fashion. The two teams finish their series on Monday afternoon.
First baseman Frank Schwindel during spring training 2016 (Jen Nevius).
Down 5-3 heading into the bottom of the 8th inning, the Storm Chasers hit three home runs. They started off the inning with back-to-back solo homers: Jorge Soler‘s 24th (his second of the game) and the 17th from Frank Schwindel (he went 2-for-4). With two outs, pinch-hitter Ruben Sosa broke the tie with a two-run shot.
That made a winner of starter Christian Binford, who allowed five runs (four earned) on ten hits over eight innings. He struck out six (throwing 110 pitches, 81 for strikes). Yender Caramo pitched a perfect ninth by inducing two ground outs (he threw just seven pitches).
Dean Anna went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI. Brayan Pena went 2-for-4 with a double.
Triple-A Omaha lost to Iowa, 7-3.
With the score tied at 1-1, the Cubs took the lead in the top of the seventh on a bases loaded walk (one of six walks by reliever Eric Stout over just 1.2 innings). Later in the inning, a two-run single opened the lead. The Cubs added three runs in the ninth against reliever Kevin Lenik (2.1IP, 2H, 2BB, 3K).
In his second straight spot start, Pedro Fernandez was solid. He allowed a run on two hits and two walks over 3.1 innings. He struck out two. Mark Peterson stranded a runner in the fourth (1.2IP, H, 0R, 0BB, 0K).
Corey Toups tied the game in the third with a solo home run (he had two hits). Hunter Dozier added a solo shot in the ninth. Frank Schwindel, Garin Cecchini, and Luis Villegas all had two hits in the loss. Villegas drove in a run, but also allowed five stolen bases (he threw out just one).
*In roster news, outfielder Jorge Soler was activated from the inactive list.
Triple-A Omaha lost their series opener against Iowa, 5-4. The Storm Chasers had a 4-1 lead heading into the sixth.
The Cubs chased starter Jake Kalish in the sixth after a sac fly cut the Omaha lead to 4-2. Jake Newberry came on and allowed an inherited run to score. Granted, the Storm Chasers committed two errors in the inning that allowed two runs to score. Newberry then allowed a leadoff home run in the seventh.
Storm Chasers leadoff hitter Billy Burns went 2-for-4 with a walk and a run scored. Dean Anna also had two hits in the loss. Corey Toups, playing left field, went 2-for-4 with an RBI and his ninth stolen base. He also had a costly error in the 6th inning. Ramon Torres, who had an error in the sixth, hit a two-run home run in the first.
*Utility man Zach Walters was activated from the Double-A DL and made his Omaha debut as a pinch runner in the ninth.
As I predicted, the KC Royals added catcher Cam Gallagher, infielder Raul Mondesi, and outfielders Terrance Gore and Paulo Orlando to the active roster today as part of the September callups. None were a surprise, as all four were already in the big leagues at some point in 2017.
Blue Rocks starter Andres Machado on July 1, 2017 (Jen Nevius).
The one surprise was right-handed pitcher Andres Machado, who started the 2017 season (his sixth with the Royals) in the bullpen with High-A Wilmington (his first at that level). While he showed flashes early in the season, Machado really took off when he slid into the rotation at the end of May (to replace the promoted Foster Griffin).
More comfortable in the rotation, Machado excelled. He had two starts at the beginning of July where he was dominant. The first came against division rival Salem, where he struck out a career-high 14 and lasted a career-high seven innings. In his very next start, against division champ Lynchburg, he lasted a career-high 7.1 innings. In both of those games, he allowed a run on six hits while walking one total batter.
Triple-A Omaha had their series finale in Nashville rained out. The Storm Chasers return home for four games against Iowa starting Friday night.
Infielder Jack Lopez during spring training 2016 (Jen Nevius).
Double-A NW Arkansas won in Tulsa, 6-2.
Down 2-1 in the eighth, the Naturals scored two runs, with Samir Duenez driving in the go ahead run with a two out single.
In the ninth with two outs, Jack Lopez hit a two-run home run and Ryan O’Hearn followed with a solo shot to add some insurance. Lopez went 2-for-5 with two runs scored and three RBIs. Leadoff hitter Donnie Dewees went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and stole his 20th base.
Starter Foster Griffin improved to 11-5, as he allowed two runs on five hits over eight innings. He struck out seven. Griffin allowed back-to-back home runs in the 2nd inning.
*Apparently, reliever Walker Sheller never made it back to Wilmington, as he was added back to the Naturals roster today.
Before I get to the game recaps, let’s take a look at the roster moves made on Wednesday. Let’s start with Triple-A Omaha, where they added five players. Infielders Ruben Sosa and Carlos Diaz were added from Double-A (though Sosa never left the Storm Chasers). Catcher Luis Villegas and infielder Garin Cecchini were activated from the DL. Pitcher Arnaldo Hernandez was added from Low-A Lexington to make the start tonight. Outfielder Jorge Soler was placed on the inactive list. Their active roster is at 29 players, so who knows who was actually taken off (I am thinking they are those that are going to be called up on Friday to the big leagues).
In Double-A, infielder Jack Lopez was back from paternity leave (his fiance had little girl) and pitcher Ashton Goudeau was activated from the DL. Reliever Walker Sheller was sent back to High-A Wilmington.
Now to the recaps…
Third baseman Hunter Dozier during spring training 2015 (Jen Nevius).
Triple-A Omaha beat Nashville, 4-3 in 11 innings.
With a runner on third base and two outs, Hunter Dozier blooped a single behind second base to drive in the go ahead run.
Arnaldo Hernandez made his Triple-A debut, allowing a run on four hits and three walks over 4.1 innings. He struck out two. Mark Peterson followed and stranded a runner in the fifth. However, he was charged with two runs on a hit and three walks once Seth Maness entered in the seventh. Maness threw four scoreless innings (3H, BB, 5K). Sam Selman earned his third save by striking out the side in the bottom of the 11th inning.
Leadoff hitter Billy Burns went 2-for-5 with a run scored. Dean Anna went 3-for-5.
Ruben Sosa played his first game since July 25th. As the DH, he went 1-for-4 with a stolen base. Catcher Luis Villegas came off the DL to go 1-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI. Third baseman Garin Cecchini came off the DL to go 1-for-5 (he had not played since August 14th).