Chicago Cubs Weekly Farm Report (4/19/22): System Boasts 5 Walk-Offs, Piggybackers are King

I typically spend the first week of the minor league season watching almost every inning of every single game, causing a mini-burnout by the third week or so. This year, I’ve paced myself and I’m feeling good as we complete the second week of the season. It’s a good thing, too. The bats slowly but surely seem to be making their way north from Arizona.

The second week of the season also happened to be the first full week for Myrtle Beach, South Bend, and Tennessee and I assure you, they did not disappoint. Let’s dig right into this week’s report!

Affiliate Records

Triple-A Iowa: 4-1 this week, 6-5 overall

Double-A Tennessee: 3-2 this week, 5-3 overall

High-A South Bend: 2-4 this week, 3-6 overall

Low-A Myrtle Beach: 4-2 this week, 5-4 overall

Trends and Notes

  • There were walk-offs galore this week, with Myrtle Beach starting their home schedule with three wins in their last at-bat and Iowa beginning their slate at Principal Park with two of their own.
  • We are already seeing the emphasized importance of piggybackers to begin the season. None of the pitchers in the minor leagues are stretched out and they probably won’t reach 80 or so pitches until several weeks into the season. That means guys like Riley Martin, Manny Espinoza, Joe Nahas, Peyton Remy, and Max Bain become even more important than usual, working multiple innings out of the bullpen.
  • The Single-A teams are both still struggling to put up good offensive numbers. Young hitters such as Owen Caissie, Kevin Alcántara, and James Triantos have yet to put together any meaningful production to this point. Howevah! It’s still very early and numbers should not be read as gospel. Give these guys to the 100 plate appearance mark before you even begin to worry in the slightest.
  • We’re all paying extra attention to the players that are making their return from injury. I covered Kohl Franklin and Riley Thompson in last week’s Farm Report and this week’s update is a little different.
  • Franklin struggled mightily the first 20 pitches or so of his outing, giving up a dribbler to third, a bloop over the shortstop, two walks, and four stolen bases. After a mound visit from his pitching coach, he struck the next two batters out and didn’t miss a single spot. His ability to refocus was super impressive.
  • Thompson, on the other hand, struck out eight of the 10 batters he faced and now has fanned 13 of the last 17 batters he’s faced this season. The stuff…it’s good.

Standout Players

The Highlights

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