Reds Nine-Run 9th Crushes Cubs at HoHoKam Park
Donald Lutz slugged a three-run home run to cap a nine-run 9th, as the Cincinnati Reds drubbed the Cubs 11-1 in Cactus League action this evening at Dwight Patterson Field at HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZ.
Jeff Samardzija got the start for the Cubs and threw five strong innings (72 pitches - 53 strikes), allowing just one run on five hits (two doubles and three singles) and no walks, with four strikeouts and 6/5 GO/FO. The Reds scored their only run off The Shark in the top of the 3rd, when pitcher Johnny Cueto singled with two outs, advanced to 2nd base on a WP, and scored on an Emmanuel Burriss RBI double.
But Reds SP Johnny Cueto was even better, shutting out the Cubs on four hits and a walk over six innings.
The Reds took a 2-0 lead in the top of the 7th, when Todd Frazier took Cubs LHP Hisanoiri Takahashi deep for a solo HR. Takahashi had struck out the side in a 1-2-3 6th before allowing the Frazier dinger (Takahashi's team leading 4th HR allowed in just 15.1 IP) in his 2nd inning of work.
Shawn Camp (pitching in a game for the second day in a row) got the final out in the 7th, and then James Russell worked a scoreless 8th.
The Reds nine-run 9th was mostly a result of Carlos Marmol's ineffectiveness, as the Cub closer surrendered six runs (three earned) on four hits and a walk without retiring a batter. It's unusual for a Spring Training crowd to boo a player from the home team, but the fans at HoHoKam Park really let Marmol have it as he left the mound. (It's Spring Training for Cubs fans, too).
The Cubs scored their only run of the evening in the bottom of the 7th off Reds RHRP Alfredo Simon. Welington Castillo led-off the frame and fisted a bloop single to RF, advanced to 2nd on a ground out, and scored on a Steve Clevenger two-out PH opposite-field double into the LF corner.
Down 2-1, the Cubs got the tying and potential go-ahead runs on base with one out against Simon in the 8th (Dan Vogelbach walked and Dave Sappelt drilled a single), but Nate Schierholtz struck out (swinging) and Jeimer Candelario (up from Minor League Camp) grounded out to end the trhreat. (Candelario also made a costly error in the top of the 9th).
Cubs 3B Christian Villanueva (who is out of minor league options) is hitting 358/464/500 for Obregon in the Mexican Pacific League (LMP), and is leading the LMP in OBP, is second in BAvg and walks, is seventh in SLG, and is tied for 8th in HR. He also has struck out only 16 times in 175 PA.
CTSteve, thanks for spelling Zimmermann correctly. We don't need another first baseman.
The media has linked Cueto and the Cubs approximately zero times this winter. I'm thinking there's just not a lot of interest there on the Cubs' part. It seems unlikely.
If the Cubs miss on Price, Grienke, and Zimmerman, they will aim for a mid-rotation starter via free agency or trade. However, I think this scenario also significantly boosts the odds that they extend Arrieta.
The Tigers are going after Zimmermann and the Red Sox will be throwing money at Price. Bringing Cueto back to the NL with the Cubs is looking like a serious possibility. Thoughts?
Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe in the financial impact to the Red Sox for not signing Jon Lester early in the free agent process:
It will be interesting to ultimately add up the cost of letting Jon Lester go.
The Red Sox botched up their negotiations with Lester in during spring training of 2014, making an initial offer of $70 million that was roughly $40 million short of what it should have been. Talks broke down and Lester was traded in July.
Wait...you're flip-flopping again?!
Is this legal? What is the rule here on opining definitively and then changing your mind?
I am not only surprised at your declaration, but Cutler's better 2015 showing. I don't get it - he went through Martz, Turner, Trestman, Kromer, and now Gase...and he is still here! And. he'll be here mext year too.
Happ signs w Jays
Morsi saying Price won't be a Jay
needs more d.beeler and e.jokisch
As an Illinois tax payer I appreciate what they r doing
+ Bankruptcy Court
2 spots left on the 40-man...wonder if they're going to play around in the rule-5 market...
A special after day after Thanksgiving thanks to AZ for his insanely detailed posts on all things roster. I don't know how you keep track of all that stuff - I suspect a chip implant, but whatever it is, it's cool.
...the wrong half.
there's nothing like crapping out of the playoffs with a strong/young cheap team after pinching pennies for years then having theo talk about having to be creative with money to make things work for 2016...but hey, baseball isn't baseball without a farmer's market and beer garden plaza with ice rinks.
they can do both...then again, if you want to look at it from a business point of view, they don't have to do both because the team is expected to be competitive and the merch+tickets+eyes-on-team are going to be at a peak unless they fail badly.