I am not sure how to tell you this, but we are halfway through May today. We are also halfway through the first half of the minor -league season as most teams have 33 games in except for Iowa who have a few more. Tennessee, South Bend, and Myrtle Beach are all playing for a first half playoff spot. Iowa, meanwhile, has their playoffs based on their full-season record. Let’s take a look at how each club is doing at the halfway point of the first half.

The Playoff Hunt

Iowa 22-14 :They are just a half a game behind Memphis who is at 24 and 15. Even losing Morel and Mervis to the Cubs, Iowa  still has a potent enough offense to contend for a playoff spot. The key is going to be how their starting pitching holds up.

Tennessee 18-15: The Smokies currently hold a two game lead over Rocket City. This is despite losing three in a row. The Smokies have not really lived up to the hype from the beginning of the year as they have struggled with finding consistency at the plate and on the mound. However, when all cylinders are clicking, this is the most talented team in the organization.

South Bend 18-15: Sitting 3.5 games behind division leader Beloit, the upcoming series against the Sky Carp is going to be crucial for the Cubs’ success. They can either gain some ground or loose ground fairly quickly. Their offense has struggled as of late, but here’s to hoping it bounces back quickly as they try to gain ground on Beloit for the next six days.

Myrtle Beach 16-16: Currently, Kannapolis and Columbia are tied for the lead in the Pelicans’ division of the Carolina League. The Birds are just 2.0 games behind and there’s plenty of baseball for them to make up against both those quads. However, the Pelicans wrap up the first half playing six games at Kannapolis, which might be the key to their first half playoff spot.

Who’s Hot in May

With today also being the midway point of the month of May, I thought I would take a good look and see who is hot at the plate this month over the last 15 days. Not all of these guys will end up making the All-Star team, but many of them will.

OF – Owen Caissie, Ezequiel Pagan, Jacob Wetzel, Christian Franklin, Parker Chavers, Jefferson Encarnacion

IF – Jake Slaughter, Sergio Alcantara, Luis Vazquez, BJ Murray, Haydn McGeary, James Triantos, Felix Stevens, Juan Mora,

C – Miguel Fabrizio

SP – Ben Brown, Porter Hodge, Jordan Wicks, Brandon Birdsell, Connor Noland, Jackson Ferris

RP – Nick Burdi, Tyler Duffey, Bailey Horn, Ben Hecht, Blake Whitney, Carlos Guzman, Luke Little, Chase Watkins, Jarod Wright, Sheldon Reed, Adam Laskey, Koen Moreno

Pics of the Week

Players of the Week

This was about as easy a call as I’ve ever made on the awards for a week. Ben Brown went five innings and struck out ten to win the starting pitcher of the week. Luke Little threw 4 scoreless innings and struck out 7 for Tennessee to win the reliever of the week. Tennessee’s BJ Murray hit .294 with a .478 OBP and an OPS of 1.419 as he hit three home runs on the week, including two in one game where he hit one from each side of the plate. As for the affiliate of the week, Iowa went 4-2 and were the only team to have a winning record the past seven days.