LOCALS IN MLB

Locals In MLB: Porter Hodge Demoted As Chicago Cubs Get Healthier

Jun 9, 2024, 1:42 PM | Updated: Jun 10, 2024, 7:06 pm

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CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 05: Porter Hodge #37 of the Chicago Cubs pitches against the Chicago White Sox at Wrigley Field on June 05, 2024 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

(Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – Everybody gets hit at some point at the sport’s highest level, and Porter Hodge found out how the other half lives when a bad call spiraled into allowing the first earned runs of his brief big league career.

The rookie righthander lost the strike zone momentarily, and the Cincinnati Reds capitalized, pushing across two earned before forcing Hodge from the game after two-thirds of an inning.

Locals In MLB: Hodge Delights In Debut, Dunn Returns To Milwaukee

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BYU Cougars (2)

Daniel Schneemann | Infielder/Outfielder

MLB – Cleveland Guardians

“He’s going to play a big role for us,” Guardians manager Stephen Vogt said following Schneemann’s promotion. “He’s going to get a lot of playing time.” After doubling on the first pitch he saw as a big leaguer, Schneemann has a pinch-hit triple while showing great patience at the plate with five walks.

Schneemann has shown his versatility since being called up, starting games at second base, shortstop, and centerfield. The dependable defender has also manned left and third base in his first week in the big leagues. He became the first player since 2006 to appear at six different positions in his first six career games.

The Guardians opened Sunday with a 41-22 record, leading the American League Central by three games over the Kansas City Royals.

RELATED: Former BYU Baseball Standout Doubles In MLB Debut

The Cleveland Guardians drafted the lefthanded-hitting Schneemann in the 33rd round of the 2018 MLB draft after three seasons at BYU. The San Diego native hit .288 with 76 RBI, 16 stolen bases, and 21 doubles as a Cougar. His best year came in 2017 when he hit .317 with 13 doubles, two home runs, and 38 runs knocked and ten stolen bases.

Last 7 Games: .455 BA | 5 Hits | 2 RBI | 5 BBs | 3 Ks | SB

2024 MiLB Stats: 53 games | .294 | 53 Hits | 15 2B | 3B | 10 HR | 39 RBI | 41 BB | 52 K

2023 Stats: 114 games | .267 | 112 Hits | 13 HR | 30 2B | 60 RBI | 59 BB | 100 K

Michael Rucker | Pitcher

MLB – Philadelphia Phillies

Rucker has yet to debut for the Phillies after the 29-year-old righthander was placed in the 15-day IL with what the team has called ‘right-hand arterial vasospasms.’ The 6’1 righty began a rehab assignment with the Clearwater Threshers on Friday, June 7.

The Phillies hold a nine-game lead over the Atlanta Braves in the National League East. Their 45-19 record is tied for the best in baseball.

RELATED: Former BYU Hurler Trading Cubs Pinstripes For Phillies Phanatics

Philadelphia has become the class of the National League, rising to an MLB-best record of 31-14. The Phillies hold a 2.5-game lead over second-place Atlanta.

Rucker played two years in Provo, finishing with a 16-2 record in 29 appearances (22 starts). He went 11-1 in 102.1 innings with a 2.73 ERA as a junior. The Chicago Cubs selected Rucker in the 11th round of the 2016 MLB draft.

2024 Stats: N/A

Career Stats: 3 Yrs | 96 appearances | 5-2 | 4.91 ERA | 123.1 IP | 120 Ks | 50 BB | 1.39 WHIP

Utah Prep Athletes (1)

Porter Hodge | Pitcher | Cottonwood HS

MLB – Chicago Cubs

Hodge’s brilliant start to his big league career hit a stumbling block in his last appearance after a missed strike call appeared to unnerve the rookie pitcher. After getting squeezed on strike three that would have ended the inning, the former Colt threw eight straight balls, leading to the first two earned runs surrendered in his career.

Hodge was optioned to Triple-A Iowa on Friday, June 7.

Chicago has been in a tailspin of late, falling to fourth in the NL Central with a 31-34 record.

Locals In MLB: Porter Hodge Reminisces On MLB Debut

The right-handed Hodge was a two-time state champ at Cottonwood High. He played varsity for four seasons, finishing with a 1.50 ERA in 130.2 innings across 30 games.

The Chicago Cubs selected Hodge out of high school in the 13th round of the 2019 MLB draft. He advanced to Double-A Tennessee in 2023, finishing with a 6-7 record and a 5.13 ERA in 80.2 innings.

2024 MLB Stats: 6 Games | 0-0 | 3.60 ERA | 5 IP | 7 Ks | 1.20 WHIP

2024 MiLB Stats: 12 Games | 1-1 | 4.80 ERA | 15 IP | 26 Ks | 12 BB | 1.67 WHIP

Utah Utes (2)

Tanner Banks | Pitcher | Salt Lake Bruins

MLB – Chicago White Sox

Banks has been a bright spot during a dark season for the White Sox. The righthander got his first win of the season in his most recent appearance. Banks allowed one hit and struck out two in 1.2 innings to beat the Boston Red Sox on Saturday, June 8. His 29.1 innings lead Chicago’s bullpen.

Chicago has the worst record in baseball at 17-48.

RELATED: Former Utah High Schoolers Show Personality In White Sox Video

The Riverton High School product played two seasons (2011-12) at Salt Lake Community College before finishing his collegiate career across the valley with the Utes.

Banks was 4-12 in 29 appearances for the Utes, including 19 starts. He struck out 70 against 31 walks in 113 innings, ending his amateur career with a 5.18 ERA. The Chicago White Sox selected Banks in the 18th round of the 2014 draft. Banks made his MLB debut with the White Sox in 2022.

Last 7 Games: 1-0 | 9.2 IP | 2.79 ERA | 6 Hits | 10 Ks | 2 BB | 0.83 WHIP

2024 Stats: 23 Games |  1-2 | SV | 29.1 IP | 4.60 ERA | 33 Ks | 6 BB | 1.33 WHIP

Oliver Dunn | 2B

MLB – (Milwaukee Brewers)

Dunn has settled into a bench role with the first-place Brewers, being used as a pinch-runner and defensive replacement in recent weeks. Dunn’s last start came on May 26 when he went 1-4 with a strikeout. His last at-bat came on May 31.

The Brewers lead the NL Central with a 31-23 record.

RELATED: Former Ute Oliver Dunn Has Memorable MLB Debut With Brewers

Dunn played 155 games for the University of Utah (2017-19), hitting .312 with seven home runs and 78 RBI. As a junior, Dunn hit .366 while safely reaching nearly half his plate appearances.

The New York Yankees selected Dunn in the 11th round of the 2019 MLB draft. Dunn spent 2023 with the Philadelphia Phillies organization. He appeared in 119 games at Double-A Reading last season, slashing .271/.396/.506 while hitting 21 home runs.

Last 7 Games: .333 BA | 4 Hits | RBI | 3 Runs | 5 Ks | SB

2024 MiLB Stats: .310 BA | 9 Hits | HR | 3 2B | 3 RBI | 2 SB | 9 Ks | 4 BB

2024 MLB Stats: .233 BA | 21 Hits | HR | 2 2B | 2 3B | 7 RBI | 3 SB | 37 Ks | 5 BB

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Brian Preece is a KSLsports.com insider covering the Utah State Aggies, Locals in MLB, and Salt Lake Bees. Follow Brian’s Bees, Beehive baseball, and Aggie athletics coverage here.

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Locals In MLB: Porter Hodge Demoted As Chicago Cubs Get Healthier