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May 17 Game Notes: Iowa vs. Columbus

May 17, 2022

IOWA CUBS (19-16) vs. COLUMBUS CLIPPERS (24-12) Tuesday, May 17, 2022 • 6:38 • Principal Park • Des Moines, IA LHP Matt Dermody (2-1, 4.05) vs. RHP Peyton Battenfield (2-2, 2.54)


Tuesday, May 17, 2022 • 6:38 • Principal Park • Des Moines, IA

LHP Matt Dermody (2-1, 4.05) vs. RHP Peyton Battenfield (2-2, 2.54)

TONIGHT’S GAME: Iowa opens their second straight home series tonight, welcoming Columbus to town for their first matchup of the 2022 season. Taking the ball for Iowa will be lefty Matt Dermody, who joined the rotation in mid-April after starting the season as a reliever. Dermody is 1-1 with a 4.74 ERA (10ER/19IP) in his four starts for Iowa. He’ll face off with Peyton Battenfield, who will make his eighth start of the season for Columbus. Battenfield is 2-2 so far this season and is coming off two straight seven-inning outings. Dermody will look to make it two wins in a row for the I-Cubs, while Battenfield hopes to extend the Clippers’ winning streak to seven.

HEATING UP: Outfielder Greg Deichmann hasn’t been having the year he hoped for, getting designated for assignment on April 16 and outrighted back to Iowa on April 22. The 26-year-old was acquired by Chicago in a trade for reliever Andrew Chafin last season and played in seven games with Iowa before getting recalled on August 6 to make his Major League debut. He played in 14 total games with Chicago last season, but started the 2022 campaign in Triple-A, hitting .207 (6-for-29) with one double, three RBI and 13 strikeouts in his first eight games of the year before getting DFA’d. In his last two games, however, Deichmann has collected five hits, going 3-for-3 on Saturday and 2-for-4 on Sunday. Both of his hits on Sunday were doubles, good for his second and third doubles of the season with Iowa. The outfielder recorded a three-hit game followed by a two-hit game already this year, from April 12-13 against Toledo.

COMIN’ IN HOT: Both Iowa and Columbus enter the series as two of the hotter teams in Triple-A. Iowa is coming off of a series in which they won five of six games including four straight to start the series. They are 7-3 in their last ten games, moving to 19-16 overall, good for fifth place in the International League West standings, five games out of first place. Over their six-game series against Omaha, the I-Cubs outscored the Storm Chasers 31-15, pitching their first two shutouts of the season. Columbus, on the other hand, is coming off a six-game sweep of St. Paul, propelling them to 24-12 on the year and just a half-game out of first place. Their six-game sweep included three extra-inning victories, two 12-inning wins to start the series and an eighth inning as part of a seven-inning double-header on Sunday to complete the series. They outscored St. Paul 41-29, playing in three one-run games.

NEW HEIGHTS: Tonight’s starter for Iowa, Matt Dermody, will take the ball against Columbus for his fifth start of the 2022 season. He’s already logged more starts this year than he has in any of his professional seasons outside of 2014, when he started 12 games at Single-A Lansing. The new role has seemed to suit the lefty, who has tossed at least 4.2 innings in each of his starts and allowed more than two runs just once, on May 11. The 26.2 innings he has pitched for the I-Cubs so far is the most he’s thrown in a season since 2017, when he completed 65.1 between Triple-A Buffalo and Toronto, and his two wins are tied for the most during that span as well.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Yesterday, Minor League Baseball announced that Robel Garcia was the International League Player of the Week for the week of May 9-15. In six games against Omaha last week, Garcia hit .409 (9-for-22) with a double and six home runs, driving in nine runs along the way. The switch-hitter hit five home runs in the first four games of the series, including at least one in each of the first four games. He didn’t go deep in game five of the series, but hit his sixth home run in as many days in the series finale, a solo shot that boosted Iowa’s lead to four. With the six home runs, Garcia hit a home run in 25% of his 24 plate appearances over the series. He drove in at least one run in five of the six games, including two, three-RBI performances. In 27 games this year for the I-Cubs, the 29-year-old is hitting .291 (25-for-86) with five doubles, one triple, nine home runs and 20 runs batted in. His nine home runs is tied for the team lead, while he leads the team with 18 free passes taken and is second on the active roster with 20 runs batted in. Among International League rankings, Garcia is tied for third in home runs (9), first in slugging percentage (.686) and first in OPS (1.096). He is third overall in slugging and OPS across the entire Triple-A.

CARRYING THE WEIGHT: With Robel Garcia’s Sunday home run in the books, the I-Cubs now have two of the top ten home run hitters in the International League on their roster in Garcia and fellow infielder Jared Young. Young and Garcia are currently tied for the team lead with nine apiece, which is tied for third in the IL. Despite their numbers, however, Iowa as a whole ranks 15th in the league in home runs as a team, with 32 on the season. That means that Young and Garcia’s combined 18 long balls account for more than half of Iowa’s team total through the first month and a half. Outside of the two leaders, nobody on the season roster has hit more than two, and only one player on the active roster - John Hicks - has hit more than one. Young and Garcia have also combined for 41 RBI, which is nearly a third of the team’s offense (41-of-137), while taking less than one fifth of the team’s at-bats (199-of-1156).

AGAINST COLUMBUS: Iowa and Columbus met for two series last year, one at each team’s respective ballpark. The Clippers took the series overall eight games to four, including taking five of six from Iowa here at Principal Park. Tonight marks the first game of their current six-game series, the first of 12 games this year at Principal Park and the first of 18 games this season between the two teams.

SHORT HOPS: After winning 8-0 on Sunday, Iowa moved to 9-0 when scoring seven or more runs this year…the shutout marked their second of the series and second of the season after also shutting out Omaha on Thursday in a 5-0 victory…on Sunday, Iowa batted around for the fourth time this season in the sixth inning; none of Iowa’s opponents have batted around in any inning yet this season…Iowa is 9-1 at home this year when they hit a home run…with their win on Sunday, Iowa moved to 4-0 in games that Matt Swarmer starts, while Swarmer now has three wins, tied for the team lead with reliever Cayne Ueckert.