Moises Ballesteros – Picture by Larry Kave/Myrtle Beach Pelicans
Tonight was quite the coming out party for a couple of young Cubs. There were some really fun performances tonight from a variety of players at different levels throughout the Cubs’ system. Let’s get started at Myrtle Beach and work our way up.
Infielder Pedro Ramirez debuted tonight at Myrtle Beach in his first game at class A. After getting out on two pop-ups in his first two ABs, he then rattled off three straight singles and he scored one time. He played second base tonight but his 3-for-5 night was quite impressive.
Moises Ballesteros is just on a tear this week. Tonight he went 2-for-5 for the Pelicans with a home run and three RBIs. He also had a double and just showed off his beautiful swing.
I am beginning to wonder where Ballesteros is going to start 2023 if he can keep up this level of performance the rest of the season. Currently, he is hitting .303 and does not seem to be phased one iota at this level. He is today’s Hitter of the Day.
Pete Crow Armstrong continued his hot streak as he 2-for-4 tonight and raised his overall batting average at South Bend to .290 with a .858 OPS. He is pushing to be the Hitter of the Month for August as he is currently hitting .348 with a .422 on base percentage to go along with 14 RBI. He gets honorable mention HOTD today.
After taking a little break for a week, Owen Caissie got back in the box today and went2-for-3 with a double in a single as he looks to recover from a slump that started in late July. That first season in A ball It’s just a grind for a lot of kids, especially ones that start the year at 19 years old. It’s tough to get through 100 games in the summer heat. Glad to see Owen back in the lineup.
Pic of the Day
When it came to the Starting Pitcher of the Day, Smokie Walker Powell threw quite the dandy of a start. He went 6.0 innings, he allowed three hits and three walks, and struck out five while not allowing a run to Rocket City in a big time start in the middle of a pennant race. He lowered his Tennessee ERA to 1.96 and his ERA just in August is 0.45. It’s going to be pretty close for a Pitcher of the Month between Powell and Luis Devers. But for today, Powell was the man of the day..
Honorable mention goes to Matt Swarmer at Iowa who threw five scoreless and struck out six while only allowing one hit.
Defensive Plays of the Day
Yes, they were a couple that caught my eye
As for the reliever of the day, originally this was very hard to do as relievers across the system struggled and nobody really turned in an outstanding performance. And then, my guy, Jeremiah Estrada showed up to save the game for Iowa after they scored three in the bottom of the eighth to take a lead over St. Paul. After a leadoff single and a wild pitch, Estrada set down the next three guys by destroying their will to live with three strikeouts. Wow! Just vicious!
I will be back in the morning with a profile of 11th round pick Branden Noriega.