Dallas Beeler back on the mound

Dallas Beeler was back on the mound for the first time since early May and Kris Bryant continues to crush AFL pitching. Right-handers Eduardo Figueroa and Yeiper Castillo made their debuts in the Venezuelan Winter League.

Arizona Fall League

Dallas Beeler made his first start since early May when he went on the disabled list with a torn tendon in the middle finger of his pitching hand. The 6-foot-5 right-hander tossed three innings in his return allowing one run on three hits and one walk. Beeler fanned two and picked two runners off first in the first inning. Beeler threw mostly fastballs in the first (91-94), and only needed nine pitches in a 1-2-3 second. Beeler's fastball was 88-92 in a 21-pitch third. He also used his cutter, slider and change-up in the 48-pitch outing.

Kris Bryant was the designated hitter, an easy assignment since he can hit. He took a 93 mph fastball deep over the centerfield wall in the seventh and gave Mesa a 1-0 lead in the first with a RBI single. Bryant is 7-14 with 2 HR and 7 RBI in three games.

Lendy Castillo made his second AFL appearance pitching the bottom of the sixth. Castillo fastball was sitting 94-95 but lack command, falling behind the first hitter before issuing a single and then issuing two walks. A pari of flied to right field scored a run in Castillo's 25-pitch inning.

RF Jorge Soler went 1-5 with a single and two runs scored. He's hitting .188 (3-16) with a hit in each game. 3B Wes Darvill got the start as the team has Saturday and Sunday off. Darvill was 1-3 with a RBI single and two walks in his first start in the AFL. Albert Almora had the night off.

Mesa improved to 3-0-1 on the season with the 7-3 win over Surprise. The AFL takes two days off and will hold the Bowman Hitting Challenge at Salt River Field on Saturday.

Venezuelan League

RHP Eduardo Figueroa (Daytona/Tennessee) made his VWL debut Friday in La Guaira's 10-4 win over Caribes. The right-hander went 1.1 innings of relief allowing a run on two hits and a walk, earning the win.

RHP Yeiper Castillo (Daytona/Tennessee) tossed 2.1 innings of no-hit ball, fanning four in his winter league debut for Zulia. Castillo was signed by the Cubs in Dec. of 2012 after spending the first six seasons with the Red Sox organization.

Instructional League

Benjamin Carhart, who played third base for Daytona in 2013, made his Cubs debut behind the plate on Friday during the Cubs Instructional League game with the Dodgers. According to a game report by Arizona Phil for TheCubReporter.Com, Carhart caught five innings and had a passed ball. Carhart told me he hadn't caught a game since high school.

Transactions—Cubs resign Gonzalez and Mota

The Cubs have re-signed minor league infielders Edgar Gonzalez and Jonathan Mota for the 2014 season. Gonzalez was signed by the Cubs in July and played in 47 games with the I-Cubs hitting .267/.309/.412, including a three-homer game on Aug. 6 at Tacoma. The 35-year-old was drafted in the 30th round in 2000 by Tampa Bay. Mota played first base at AA Tennessee, filling in for Justin Bour after he broke his arm, but the versatile 26-year-old also played 2B, SS, 3B, LF and RF for the Smokies. Signed by the Cubs in 2005 as a free agent, the Venezuelan hit .276/.348/.409 with 7HR and 40 RBI in 109 games at Tennessee.

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