MB’s Bote, Clifton sweep Cubs’ monthly accolades

pel-boteslideMyrtle Beach Pelicans infielder David Bote and right-hander pitcher Trevor Clifton have been named the Chicago Cubs’ August Minor League Player and Pitcher of the Month, respectively, the organization announced Tuesday. Bote becomes the third Pelican to earn a monthly award in 2016, with Clifton taking home his second such honor of the season.

Bote batted .367/.439/.541 in August, pounding 12 doubles, two triples and one home run to drive in 16 runs. A native of Longmont, Colo., Bote walked 13 times against 12 strikeouts in 26 games over the month en route to leading all Cubs minor leaguers in average and runs scored (22). His 15 extra-base hits were tied for the most in the organization over the month.

The Cubs’ 18th-round pick out of Neosho County Community College (Kan.) in 2012, Bote is currently riding a 27-game on-base streak, the longest of any Pelican this season and the best active roll in the Carolina League. Over the last 64 games, he is hitting .353/.425/.526 with 14 doubles, two triples, five home runs and 37 RBIs. That surge has helped raise his overall line to .337/.410/.518 with 26 doubles, three triples, six homers and 41 RBIs in 72 games with Myrtle Beach. Bote has also spent 12 games with Triple-A Iowa and seven with Double-A Tennessee this year.

Over five August starts, Clifton went 2-0 with a 0.85 ERA. The right-hander struck out 34 against five walks in 31.2 innings, yielding just 19 hits in the process. Clifton did not allow an earned run in four of the five starts, including blankings during his last two outings on August 23 at Carolina (6.2 IP), and on August 30 vs. Lynchburg (6.0 IP). He matched a career-high with 10 strikeouts during that August 23 start against the Mudcats, while also taking a no-hitter in the eighth inning of his August 3 outing at Frederick.

Chicago’s 12th-round pick in 2013 out of Heritage High School in Tenn., Clifton was named the Carolina League Pitcher of the Year, becoming the fourth Pelican ever to earn that honor. The Maryville, Tenn. native went 7-7 with a 2.72 ERA while striking out an organizational-best 129 batters against 41 walks in 119.0 innings. His ERA is the best in the Carolina League by nearly a full run, while he also ranks first in batting average against (.225) and WHIP (1.16), and third among starters in strikeouts per nine innings (9.8).

Bote joins infielder Ian Happ, now with Tennessee, in taking home a Cubs monthly honor as a member of the Pelicans in 2016. Clifton also earned Chicago’s Minor League Pitcher of the Month award for May.

The Pelicans clinched the second half Southern Division championship and will play the Salem Red Sox in the best-of-three Southern Division Championship Series. Playoff tickets and packages are now available by calling (843) 9018-6000 or by visiting www.MyrtleBeachPelicans.com. Myrtle Beach hosts Salem in Game 1 of the SDCS on Wednesday at 6:05 p.m. from TicketReturn.Com Field at Pelicans Ballpark.

Photo by Larry Kave/MB Pelicans

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