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June 10 Game Notes: Iowa vs. Columbus

June 10, 2021

IOWA CUBS (10-20) vs. COLUMBUS CLIPPERS (12-19) Thursday, June 10, 2021 • 7:08 PM • Principal Park • Des Moines, IA RHP Scott Effross (0-1, 3.60) vs. RHP Kevin Herget (0-1, 4.63)


Thursday, June 10, 2021 • 7:08 PM • Principal Park • Des Moines, IA

RHP Scott Effross (0-1, 3.60) vs. RHP Kevin Herget (0-1, 4.63)

TONIGHT’S GAME: Iowa will take on Columbus in game three of the six-game set. Scott Effross is set to make his third appearance and second start of the season for Iowa tonight. He holds an 0-1 record with a 3.60 ERA and will be squaring off against Kevin Herget for Columbus. Herget is 0-1 with a 4.63 ERA in three games with the Clippers.

FROM BIG INNING TO END: Heading into today’s game, the I-Cubs have surrendered 157 runs in 30 games and trail only the Clippers in the Triple-A East Midwest in runs allowed. A big contributing factor to the high total is the multi-run inning, of which Iowa has allowed 43 so far this season. Half of those multi-run innings have been 3+ run innings, and they’ve been consequential: the I-Cubs are 2-15 in games where their opponent has had at least one 3+ run frame. Those innings have also been getting more frequent lately. After going the first eight games of the season without allowing an inning of more than two runs, Iowa has allowed a 3+ run inning in 13 of their last 16 games - and they’ve lost all 13 of them. On the other side, the I-Cubs themselves are only 5-7 when their offense has a 3+ run inning, and they’ve lost all of the most recent seven. While it hasn’t always led to success, the I-Cubs hitters have made things exciting, as eight out of their 12 3+ run frames this season have come in the seventh inning or later.

DOUBLE OR NOTHING: The Columbus Clippers have been littering the outfield gaps at Principal Park, knocking ten doubles in just the first two games of the series. That number is already good for second-most doubles the I-Cubs have allowed in a series so far this season, just one shy of the 11 doubles St. Paul hit from May 25-30, and the Clippers still have four games left in Iowa. Six separate players have hit a double for Columbus in the last two games, including Oscar Mercado, who has hit two, and Nolan Jones, who has hit four. Jones’ three doubles on Tuesday were the most by a single player in a game against the I-Cubs so far this season. The Clippers have tagged six different Iowa pitchers for at least one double, including Ryan Meisinger for two and Jake Jewell for four. Columbus is now second in the Triple-A East and first in the Midwest Division with 65 doubles on the season.

NEED SOME LENGTH: In Iowa’s last six games, their starters have combined to throw 23.1 innings, for an average of just under four innings per game. On June 6, Adrian Sampson made his third start of the season for Iowa, going six innings for his longest outing of the year. Not only was six innings Sampson’s longest outing of the season, it was also the team’s longest outing they have gotten from a starting pitcher since Alec Mills spun six innings in a major league rehab appearance on June 2. Since then, Iowa has made six total starts, including four different pitchers. Robert Stock, who began the season as a reliever, tossed four innings twice over that span, on June 3 and 8. Matt Swarmer, who was added to Iowa’s roster from Double-A Tennessee on June 1, started on both June 4 and last night, June 9. In both outings, Swarmer managed to cover just 2.2 innings for the I-Cubs. Scott Effross threw four innings on June 5 after joining the team on June 1. Sampson’s six-inning start tied for the most innings Iowa has gotten from a starter this year, the team’s seventh start of that length on the season.

ONLY NUMBER FIVE: In just his third game with Iowa tonight, Scott Effross is set to make his second start of the year and fifth of his career. In his first start with the I-Cubs on June 5 against Omaha, Effross tossed four innings, allowing two runs on three hits. He hit one batter, allowed one home run and struck out six. It was his first start since June 19, 2019, with Double-A Tennessee. In that game, he spun five scoreless innings allowing just four hits.

TOUGH THIRD: Through two starts with Iowa, Matt Swarmer is 0-2 with a 21.94 ERA. In his first start on Friday, June 4, against Omaha, the righty had allowed just one run through two innings. He struck out the first two batters of the third inning, and then proceeded to allow six runs to score, knocking him out of the game. Last night, he was scoreless through two, but the third inning provided trouble again for Swarmer, as he was unable to get through the inning. He allowed six more runs on two three-run home runs in the inning. In all, Swarmer has thrown 5.1 innings for Iowa, allowing 13 runs on 15 hits, including five home runs. 12 of those runs and four home runs have all come in the third inning against the starter.

DIFFERENCE MAKER: After joining the team in Omaha last week, Michael Hermosillo has made some quick noise for the I-Cubs. He has hit .353 (6-for-17) in five games with the team so far, including a double, two home runs, and seven RBI, which leads the team during that stretch. His grand slam last night tied him with Jose Lobaton and Taylor Gushue for second on the active roster in home runs with two, demonstrating his potential value to a team that has been relatively short on power since Patrick Wisdom and Rafael Ortega’s call-ups. Despite his contributions, however, Hermosillo has yet to win a game with Iowa; the team is 0-5 since he joined them on May 4.

THAT’S GRAND: Michael Hermosillo’s grand slam last night was the I-Cubs’ fourth on the season, joining Abiatal Avelino’s May 5 shot and Jose Lobaton and Patrick Wisdom’s knocks in back-to-back games May 20 and 21. This early-season success with the bases loaded is not unprecedented; the 2019 I-Cubs hit four grand slams in their first 28 games and then just three over the next 112, and the 2017 team hit five grand slams in the first 21 games of the season and then none in the final 118 games. This season, all four of Iowa’s grand slams have come at Principal Park, and after last night’s loss, the 2021 I-Cubs are 3-1 when they’ve hit a grand slam. Last night’s defeat marks the first time Iowa has hit a grand slam in a loss since April 17, 2017, when Victor Caratini hit one in a 9-10 loss against Round Rock.

AGAINST COLUMBUS: Iowa and Columbus will play their third of six games at Principal Park tonight. The Clippers are in search of their first series win since opening week, when they defeated Louisville 4-1 on the road. Iowa’s last series win came May 18-23, when they bested Omaha three games to two. The I-Cubs trail the series 2-0 in the series and have allowed eight runs in each game. They have been outscored 16-9 in the two games played.

SHORT HOPS: The I-Cubs did not commit an error last night, marking their first errorless game since May 28...Columbus is hitting for a .329 average (24-for-73) against Iowa through the first two games of the series...the I-Cubs now have the lowest winning percentage in the Triple-A East at .333.