The Iowa Cubs continue to send the Sky Sox in a downward spiral to wrap up the 2016 season and won again by the 5-1 margin Sunday afternoon. Drew Rucinski was outstanding and allowed just one run on three hits over 7 2/3 innings. The Sky Sox didn’t get the first of their three hits until Josmil Pinto’s single with one out in the fifth inning. The Iowa offense supported their starter with two runs in the first inning and five runs total over the first five innings. Rucinski himself picked up an RBI triple in the bottom of the second inning, adding to his huge day. Andy Wilkins put the Sky Sox on the board with an RBI single that plated Lewis Brinson in the seventh inning. Aaron Wilkerson took the loss and gave up 5 runs on 7 hits, 2 walks and 5 strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings.
FULL RECAP HERE – Quick Hits can be found following the preview of today’s game
This is it, today the Sky Sox and Cubs are ready to do battle in the fourth and final game of the final four-game road series of the 2016 campaign. REPEAT THIS IS THE FINAL GAME OF THE 2016 SEASON. This is also the fourth and final series these two teams will play here this season. The Sky Sox enter play looking to return to their winning ways and get back towards the .500 mark. They come into the tilt with a road record 26-43. They are back to three games under .500 at 67-70 and sit in second place, 11.5 games in back of the Dodgers with their playoff hopes gone with the wind. In hopes of finishing the final week on the upslope, Colorado Springs will save its best for last and send right-hander Hiram Burgos to the bump against fellow right-hander Jordan Pries of the Cubs. Burgos has been outstanding winning each of his last five starts and holding the opposition to 4 earned runs in 32 innings while Pries is 4-2 with a 5.31 ERA in eight starts with Iowa. Both teams have been eliminated from postseason play. The Sox are 6-8 against the Cubs’ top affiliate and have lost the last four games of the season series, and have compiled an 87-106 all-time record against them and are 36-58 at Principal Park.
Colorado Springs Sky Sox (67-70) at Iowa Cubs (66-76) – 11:08 p.m. – Principal Park – Des Moines, Iowa
Pitching Matchup: RHP Hiram Burgos (10-9, 4.23) at RHP Jordan Pries (4-2, 5.31)
Sky Sox Pitcher: RHP Hiram Burgos will make his 27th trip to the mound for the Sky Sox and 25th from the starting role today against the Cubs. Through his first 26 appearances, the righty is 10-9 with a 4.23 ERA allowing 71 runs (65 earned) on 148 hits, 53 walks and 110 strikeouts in 138 1/3 innings. He is 5-4 in his last nine outings and has given up 25 earned runs on 59 hits in 63 innings. His last five outings have come in winning fashion against the Omaha Storm Chasers at Werner Park, Albuquerque Isotopes at Security Service Field, the Round Rock Express at Dell Diamond, the OKC Dodgers at Bricktown and the New Orleans Zephyrs at home. He has combined to give up 4 earned runs on 17 hits over 32 innings in the wins. Away from home, Burgos is 4-6 with a 4.39 ERA and has held opponents to a .281 batting average against outside the lines of Security Service Field. Overall, foes are hitting .280 against Burgos. He was selected by the Brewers in the 6th round of the 2009 draft out of Bethune-Cookman University and has made 155 minor-league appearances to the tune of a 47-46 record with a 3.80 ERA and 6 MLB starts in which he has gone 1-2 with a 6.44 ERA. He has not pitched in the big leagues since 2013.
Last time out – 8/31/16 vs. New Orleans – Burgos won his fifth straight start and spun another beauty with the Zephyrs as his victim. He allowed a run in the first inning, but that was all as he completed six innings and gave up the one run on five hits, didn’t walk anyone and struck out five. He threw 77 pitches, 57 of which went for strikes.
Last 10 Games for Burgos:
Cubs Pitcher: Righty Jordan Pries gets the call in the Cubs season finale. He enters play having made 8 starts with the Iowa Cubs and has logged a 4-2 record with a 5.31 ERA. Overall in 2016 he has pitched for the Iowa Cubs, the Tacoma Rainiers, and the Jackson Generals to the tune of an 11-5 record with a 5.05 ERA. He was acquired by the Cubs in the July 20 deal that sent Dan Vogelbach and Paul Blackburn to the Mariners in exchange for Pries and Mike Montgomery. The 26-year old Pries was originally selected by the Mariners in the 30th round of the 2011 draft out of Stanford University. In his six professional seasons, the Alameda, California native is 44-26 with a 4.47 ERA in 117 career appearances, 101 of which have been starts. He has yet to pitch in the big leagues.
Last time out – 8/31/16 at Nashville – The righty brought home the win in Nashville with seven strong innings of work. Pries allowed one run on a solo homer to Matt Chapman over the seven innings, while scattering two more hits and striking out seven. He didn’t walk a batter and delivered 92 pitches, 68 of which went for strikes in the game he and the Cubs won 10-1.
Last 10 Games for Pries –
Dan Karcher (@SkySoxKarch) continues his 27th season behind the mic for Sky Sox games, he will have the call of tonight’s game from Principal Park at 11:08 p.m. I will get Sky Sox Warmup off the ground and running at 10:30 MDT on XTRA Sports 1300.
Quick Hits from Sunday’s 5-1 Loss –
Hitting Notes –
The Sox picked up their one run on three hits. They have plated 4 runs on 17 hits over the first three games of the series.
Lewis Brinson went 1-or-4 at the plate with a double and a run scored.
Andy Wilkins drove in Brinson with an RBI single in the 7th inning.
Josmil Pinto broke up Rucinski’s perfect game bid with a one-out single in the fifth inning.
Michael McKenry walked rounding out the four men who reached for Colorado Springs.
Pitching Notes –
Aaron Wilkerson started the game and couldn’t make it out of the fifth inning in his final start of 2016. He allowed five runs on seven hits, walked a pair and struck out five Iowa Cubs in 4 1/3 innings. He threw 82 pitches, 54 of which went for strikes.
Sam Freeman recorded five outs limiting the Cubs to a hit and two walks, while striking out one.
Michael Kirkman pitched a scoreless inning despite walking one and allowing a hit, he also added two strikeouts.
Damien Magnifico walked one and stuck out one in his inning of work.
Play of the Game –
It was Drew Rucinski’s day and the best part of it was his RBI triple. Check it out –
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Pregame interview with Dan Karcher and Sox Hitting Coach Bob Skube –
Thanks for reading – See you on the radio,