Kane County 6, Clinton 5
Game Recap: The Lumberkings got two runs off Cubs' top pitching prospect Pierce Johnson in the first on three hits, a walk, and a sacrifice fly. Kane County answered with three runs in the third. Rock Shoulders extended his hitting streak to six games with a leadoff single as KC loaded the bases on a infield single by Marco Hernandez and Wilson Contreras HBP. Bijan Rademacher forced in a run with a walk and the Cougars tied the game on a sacrifice fly by Pin-Chieh Chen. Contreras went to third on a throwing error trying to pick him off and then scored on Oliver's Zapata's ground ball to second, beating the throw home. The Lumberkings tied the game in the sixth off reliever Jeff Antigua with a RBI double but Shoulders continued his hot start to the season driving an offering over the fence for his second HR. The Cougars added an insurance run in the eighth on a two-out RBI by Rademacher, scoring Hernandez who singled. A walk and throwing error put runners on second and third in the ninth off KC's Eduardo Orozco. A groundout RBI made it 5-4 and after a wild pitch moved the runner to third and Clinton tied the game when Orozco unleashed his second wild pitch. In the bottom of the ninth, Amaya singled, went to second on Daniel Vogelbach bloop's single, took third on a wild pitch, and scored on Candelario's game-winning RBI single.
Pitching recap. After the first inning, Johnson settled down retiring six of the next eight hitters. He gave up a pair of hits in the third but got bailed out as third baseman Jeimer Candelario flashed some of his defensive skills to start a double play. Primarily a strikeout pitcher in college, Johnson wasn't missing many bats on Tuesday afternoon as the Lumberkings consistently made contact with 5 groundouts and 3 fly outs. Johnson went five innings with two walks and four strikeouts, three looking as Johnson's off-speed pitches kept Clinton off-balance. It was good sign to Johnson shake off the first inning and pitch four quality innings. He is expected to start April 14 at Wisconsin. With over 450 innings in the minors, Jeff Antigua is the veteran of the staff, including the last four seasons in the MWL with Peoria. Antigua went three innings allowing one run on four hits with one punchout. Eduardo Orozco, who got the win, didn't allow a hit but a walk, a throwing error, and two wild pitches allowed two Clinton runs in the closer's first chance at a save.
Cougars lineup: Zapata CF (0-5 RBI) Amaya 2B (2-5), Vogelbach 1B (3-5), Candelario 3B (2-5 RBI), Shoulders DH (2-3 HR RBI 2R), Hernandez SS (2-4 2R), Contreras C (0-3), Rademacher RF (2-3), Chen LF (0-3)
Cougars Notes: Kane County pounded out 13 hits and are now hitting a MWL best .282.….Rock Shoulder's (.480/.510/.760) continued his hot start to 2013 with his third straight multi-hit game. He leads the MWL in hits (12) and is tied for first in total bases (19)
Round Rock 4 , Iowa 2
Iowa dropped its sixth straight game, a franchise record to start the season.
Game Recap: A two-run homer by former Cubs minor leaguer Jim Adduci gave the Express a 2-0 lead and they added another run in the first on a sacrifice fly. The Cubs got on the board with Darnell McDonald's first homer of the season but the Express answered in the fifth on Mike Olt's RBI double. Brett Jackson tripled in the sixth and scored on Brad Nelson's groundout as Iowa pulled to within 4-2.
After throwing 25 pitches in the first inning, Chris Rusin (0-1) found his groove holding Round Rock scoreless until a RBI double in the fifth. The left-hander ended his night working six innings allowing 7 hits, four walks, and four earned runs while striking out two. Zach Putnam pitched in his third game working a scoreless inning with a strikeout throwing 12 pitches. Rafael Dolis, also in his third game, pitched a scoreless eighth.
Cubs lineup: Watkins SS (0-4), Jackson RF (2-4 3B), Murphy 2B (1-4), Nelson 1B (0-4), McDonald LF (1-3 HR), Wright DH (2-4), Bogusevic CF (1-3), Boscan C (0-2), Sweeney PH (0-1), Maysonet 3B (0-3).
Clearwater 5, Daytona 4
Clearwater ended Daytona's three-game winning streak as the Threshers took advantage of four Cubs' errors.
Game Recap: Clearwater grabbed a 1-0 lead in the second on a RBI double and then added two unearned runs in the third. Daytona got a run back in the third on Zeke DeVoss' first homer of the season. Stephen Bruno's RBI double in the fifth scored Tim Saunders to cut the lead to 3-2. The Threshers used a double and two throwing errors to score two twice in the seventh for a 5-2 lead. Javier Baez ripped a triple in the seventh and scored on a RBI single by Jorge Soler, his fourth of the year. Taylor Davis pulled the Cubs to within one with a RBI triple, his first hit of the season, driving in Ben Carhart, who made a nice slide to score, in the eighth.
Pitching Recap: Zack Cates was a third round pick of the San Diego Padres in 2010 and he started 25 games for Fort Wayne in 2011 in the MWL going 4-10 with 111 K in 118 innings with a 4.73 ERA. He was traded along with Anthony Rizzo and never found his groove in 2012 struggling at both Peoria (0-3, 5.45 ERA) and Daytona (0-6 10.50). He gave up runs in 16 of his 17 games. That trend continued Tuesday night as Cates was touched for a run in the second but pitched out of the jam, getting a strikeout to end the inning. The 6-foot-3 right-hander tossed 3.2 innings with six hits and seven strikeouts. Eduardo Figueroa continued Daytona's bullpen dominance for 2.2 innings but that streak ended in the seventh. Figueroa allowed two earned runs in 2.2 innings on a hit and two walks. He fanned three in his second game of the year. Sheldon McDonald was greeted with a triple, but that was the only hit he allowed in 2.2 innings, walking a pair.
Cubs lineup: DeVoss DH (1-5 HR RBI), Saunders CF (0-2), Easterling LF (0-1), Baez SS (1-5 3B), Soler RF (2-4 RBI), Bruno 2B (1-5 2B RBI), Andreoli LF (1-2), Geiger 3B (1-4), Carhart 1B (1-3), Davis C (1-4 3B RBI)
Cubs Notes: Tim Saunders, making his first start in CF, was hurt diving for a ball in the seventh inning and had to come out of the game…….Jorge Soler (.450) and John Andreoli (.471) both extended their hit streaks to five games
The Smokies have the day off and hold their home opener Wednesday, April 10, when they host Chattanooga for a five-game series. The Lookouts are led by Dodgers' top prospect Yasiel Puig, who's hitting .538 with a homer and three RBI.