Albert Almora makes 2013 debut
The Chicago Cubs first-round pick in 2012 made his debut Wednesday night in Peoria going 3-4 with a RBI double and a run scored. In his first MWL at-bat the right-hander singled in the first inning but bounced into a double play in the fifth. The 20-year-old added a single in the seventh in the Cougars 9-2 loss.
Almora, the sixth overall pick last year, broke his hamate bone swinging a bat on March 14. He had surgery on his hand the next day and has returned on schedule after playing in extended spring training games during his rehab.
Almora began playing for his high school as an eighth grader and in 25 games as a senior hit .603 and slugged 1.164 with six homers and 34 RBI for Mater Academy Charter High School in Hialeah Gardens, Florida. Coming out of high school he was ranked by Baseball America as the best defensive player and second-best pure hitter.
A member of Team USA Baseball, Almora was named 2011 USA Baseball's Athlete of the Year after helping the 18-and-under squad go 9-0 and earn the gold medal in the Pan-Am Games. He was named the tourney MVP. Almora was part of six USA national teams, earning five gold medals.
After signing with the Cubs on July 11 for $3.9 million, Almora made his pro debut on July 23 hitting a homer. He played in 18 games at Mesa (.347/363/480) with 18 runs and five stolen bases. He was promoted to Boise appearing in 15 games (.292/.292/.446) with a homer and six RBI.
Daytona 8, Jupiter 4
The first four Cubs hitters of the ball game reached on base hits scoring three runs and Daytona (23-21) pounded out 12 hits in the win over Jupiter (24-21).
At the Plate: Zeke DeVoss led off the game with a single, took second on John Andreoli's bunt single, and scored on Javier Baez's double. Jorge Soler followed with a single, scoring Andreoli and Baez for a 3-0 lead. Dustin Geiger added a two-run double in the second and Chadd Krist, crossed home in the third on a DeVoss grounder after he doubled. A Hammerhead fielding error in the eighth allowed two more runs to score.
Cubs Lineup: DeVoss CF (1-5 2RBI), Andreoli LF (3-5 2R), Baez SS (1-5 2R 2B RBI), Soler RF (1-3 2RBI 2BB), Geiger 1B (2-5 2B 2RBI), Carhart 3B (1-4 BB), Easterling LF (1-5 R), Krist C (1-3 2R BB), Darvill 2B (1-3).
On the Mound: LHP Austin Kirk (5-2 5.02 ERA) needed a good outing and he got it, allowing just three hits in five innings and one earned run to earn his fifth victory of the season. He fanned two and walked a pair. RHP Luis Lira (0-3 7.52) went 1.2 innings yielding two hits, two earned runs and one walk. LHP Hunter Cervenka (1-0 1.80) earned his fifth save getting the final seven outs. He surrendered four hits and one run with four walks and two punchouts.
Peoria 9, Kane County 2
Peoria (22-21) scored three runs in the first and added two more in the second to beat Kane County (20-23) in the MWL showdown of Cubs vs. Cards
At the Plate: Kane County got 10 hits and walked two times but left 8 runners on base and were just 2-10 with RISP. CF Albert Almora had three hits including a RBI double in the third to plate Kane County's first run. Daniel Vogelbach's doubled scoring Almora for the Cougars only runs of the night.
Cougars Lineup: Zapata LF (1-5), Almora CF (3-4 R 2B RBI), Vogelbach 1B (1-4 2B RBI), Candelario 3B (1-4), Shoulders DH (1-2 2BB), Rademacher RF (1-4), Contreras C (0-4), Hernandez SS (1-4), Amaya 2B (1-4 3B)
On the Mound: LHP Michael Heesch worked into the seventh inning but gave up six hits and five runs, four earned. He fanned three and fell to 2-4 on the season with a 4.07 ERA. Eduardo Orozco's scoreless streak of six innings came to an end as the right-hander allowed three hits and two runs before getting the third out of the seventh. LHP Brian Smith allowed two runs, one earned, in his inning of work with two walks and two strikeouts.
Cougar Notes: To make room for Almora on the roster, Kane County placed C Carlos Escobar on the disabled list. Escobar joined the Cougars on May 9 from extended spring training and had played in five games going 3-19 with a double and a RBI.
Las Vegas 9, Iowa 4
Las Vegas (21-23) scored in each of the first four innings, including a grand-slam in the fourth, to defeat Iowa (18-25).
At the Plate: Iowa got three solo homers from Brian Bogusevic, Edwin Maysonet and Donnie Murphy as part of their eight-hit attack. Brad Nelson drove in Brett Jackson, who tripled, with a sacrifice fly for Iowa's other run.
Cubs Lineup: Maysonet 2B (2-5 R HR RBI), Bogusevic RF (1-2 HR RBI 3BB), Jackson CF (1-3 R 3B), Lillibridge PH (0-1), Sappelt LF (2-3), Nelson 1B (0-3 RBI), Vitters 3B (0-4), Murphy (1-3 R HR RBI BB), Boscan C (0-4), Moscoso P (1-1), Stewart PH (0-1), McDonald CF (0-1 BB)
On the Mound: Guillermo Moscoso (2-1 4.68 ERA) had his toughest outing of the year surrendering eight earned runs on six hits and four walks in four innings. He allowed three homers, including a grand slam. Moscoso has fanned 31 in 25 innings. Casey Coleman (0-0 3.93) went a season-high three innings yielding two hits and a walk. He fanned a pair and threw 39 pitches. Hisanori Takahashi (0-0 4.50) tossed two innings with a pair of strikeouts and a run on three hits.
Tennessee had the day off and begin a five-game series with Huntsville at 7:15 P.M. EST on Thursday at Smokies Park.