Cubs not playoff-bound, but three affiliates are

The Cubs’ Single-A affiliates opened postseason play Tuesday.

SHARE Cubs not playoff-bound, but three affiliates are
Outfield prospect Owen Caissie and the Single-A South Bend Cubs opened the postseason on Tuesday. File Photo.

Outfield prospect Owen Caissie and the Single-A South Bend Cubs opened the postseason on Tuesday. File Photo.

John Antonoff/Sun-Times

Cubs top prospect Pete Crow-Armstrong called his shot this weekend before the High-A South Bend Cubs opened the postseason at home Tuesday against the Cedar Rapids Kernels.

“We’re going to go win at home,” Crow-Armstrong said in a conversation with the Sun-Times during South Bend’s last regular-season series, also against the Kernels, “then we’re going to come back here one more time, say goodbye to Cedar Rapids and move on to the next. That’s the plan.”

South Bend completed the first part of that plan Tuesday, beating the Kernels 2-1 in Game 1 of the Midwest League West Championship Series.

Three Cubs affiliates clinched playoff berths.

The Cubs’ Low-A affiliate, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans, also started postseason play. They lost to the Charleston RiverDogs 6-1 in Game 1 of the Carolina League South Championship Series. The Double-A Tennessee Smokies open postseason play next week.

“It’s really a testament to our managers and on-field staff, but our managers, especially,” Cubs vice president of player development Jared Banner said. “Creating a winning culture is really important to us. We think if we’re developing players the right way, then we’re naturally going to win some games. And this year, we’ve been able to do that.”

Myrtle Beach claimed a postseason berth as the first-half division winner. Tennessee and South Bend earned their spots in the playoffs for their second-half performances.

“It was our common goal,” South Bend manager Lance Rymel said. “We had a winning [record] in the first half of the season, but I feel like we underachieved just a tad. And the whole team thought we could make the playoffs, and that was our goal, and to keep developing.

Rehab assignment for Thompson

Right-hander Keegan Thompson (tight lower back) is set to start a rehab assignment Friday, the Cubs said. The team hasn’t announced where he’ll begin his assignment.

Thompson has been sidelined since Aug. 20. In addition to the back tightness, the Cubs have been monitoring the natural fatigue from Thompson’s first full major-league season.

Ortega breaks finger

Outfielder Rafael Ortega broke his left ring finger attempting to bunt during the Cubs’ 4-1 win against the Mets on Tuesday. The injury ends his season.

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