Golden Sparkles for Cubs at Talking Stick

Reggie Golden drilled a two-run single, an RBI double, and a triple, Mark Malave singled, doubled, walked, and scored two runs, Jeffrey Baez singled twice, walked, stole a base, and scored a run, and James Pugliese hurled four innings of shutout baseball, leading the Cubs to a 6-4 victory over the Rockies in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Dust Storm Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort, east of Scottsdale, AZ. 

After beginning the Cactus League Extended Spring Training schedule mired in a 1-22 slump (045/276/091 in 29 PA over the course of 11 EXST games), Cubs 2010 2nd round draft pick Reggie Golden has been on fire, hitting 423/483/692 over his last nine games (29 PA), bringing his season slash-line up to a more-respectable 250/438/479. Golden suffered two torn ligaments in his left knee a year ago while running the bases as a member of the Peoria Chiefs, and missed the rest of the 2012 season. He is just now rounding back into playing shape.        

James Pugliese has been pitching "lights out" over his last four Cactus League EXST appearances (two GS), allowing no runs on four hits and four walks with 11 strikeouts in 10.1 IP. With Josh Conway out for the season and Dillon Maples having been promoted to Kane County, Pugliese is putting in a claim on one of the open starting rotation slots at Boise.    

Wilfredo Petit returned to action today, catching for six innings and getting three AB. Petit suffered a bruise on the back of his left hand last week after being struck by a bat on a Catcher's Interference error, and although it initially appeared to be a serious injury, x-rays were negative. 

Here is the abridged box score from today's game (Cubs players only):

1a. Albert Almora, CF: 0-4 (6-3, 6-3, F-8, K, RBI)
1b. Kevin Encarnacion, CF: 0-1 (4-3)
2. Jeffrey Baez, DH: 2-4 (1B, K, 1B, K, BB, R, SB)
3. Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-5 (6-3-5 DP, P-3, K, F-9, 1B, SB)  
4. Jacob Rogers, 1B: 1-4 (F-9, K-WP, BB, 1B, K, R)
5. Reggie Golden, LF: 3-4 (3B, 4-6-3 DP, 1B, 2B, R, 3 RBI, CS)
6a. Garrett Schlecht, RF: 0-1 (HBP, K, BB, PO)
6b. Jose Dore, RF: 1-1 (1B)
7. Brad Zapenas, 2B: 0-4 (6-3, F-8, F-8, P-4)
8. Mark Malave, 3B: 2-3 (BB, K, 1B, 2B, 2 R)
9a. Wilfredo Petit, C: 0-3 (3-U, E-3, K, R)
9b. Erick Castillo, C: 0-1 (6-3) 

1. James Pugliese: 4.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 GIDP, 42 pitches (31 strikes), 5/2 GO/FO
2. Carlos Rodriguez: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 0 K, 27 pitches (14 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
3. Larry Suarez: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 43 pitches (26 strikes), 3/3 GO/FO
4. Matt Iannazzo: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 PO, 27 pitches (17 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO


1. Wilfredo Petit: 1-1 CS
2. Erick Castillo: 0-1 CS

RF Jose Dore - potential tying run thrown out 9-2 trying to score from 2nd base on single


WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's 



dejesus leadoff HR, bottom far so good for the cubs in the battle of the cubs 1st round pick pitchers.

2 really horrible cubs base running errors on the night and we're not even out of the 2nd...especially the valbuena screwup.

also, lol ninja 2 run HR.

1-3, bottom 2nd.

AZ Phil: I know you reported when Josh Conway got hurt but is there a formal diagnosis? Is his problem surgical? Please update what you can, as you now mention that he's out for the season.


Don't know if you caught the comments from 5/11 -- "Per the Tribune: "Pitching in an extended spring game in poor conditions at the Brewers' Maryvale, Ariz., complex, the Cubs’ Josh Conway was lost for the season with a stress fracture in his elbow."

Phil added -- "JOE P: Josh Conway has a cast on his right arm, from shoulder to finger-tips."

Phil will have to add any further updates, if he has any.

Thanks. I obviously missed that. Miss a little, miss a lot.


Help wanted: proofreader/editorial assistant

Sullivan in the Trib this morning:

"It was the first series triumph for the Cubs since Aug. 25-26, when they also beat the Rockies two out of three."

The Cubs are actually starting to do some little things I like. Soriano's throw last night and Castro's relay was good to watch, like I was actually watching a professional baseball team. Rizzo working the count with a guy on base in the fifth and his late inning double to right, clearly not going for the home run there. And I know some disagree with me here, but I like the aggressiveness on the bases. It forces mistakes.

A quick look at this year's results -- haven't the Cubs won 3 series in 2013 befe this one?

2 of 3 vs. Pirates ot start the season, 3 of 4 vs. Marlins, 2 of 3 vs. Nats.

Reply from the Trib on the Sullivan article:

It was the Cubs first home series win since August. Home is the key word and it was missed in the fast work on deadline last night.

We’ll set the record straight tomorrow.

Mike Kellams
Tribune Sports

~sings~ "Golden sparkles fill your eyes..."

Recent comments

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  • it's day old news, and it's got nothing to do with the cubs, but ichiro signed a $2m deal with MIA (with a $2m option for 2017).

    neat. 41 years old and damn close to 3000 hits.

    also, rain delays suck.

  • take that giants

  • I think that if a team objects to the 1-game wildcard playin game so much, they could just win the pennant and avoid themselves the trouble.

  • Per Jesse Sanchez at, Cubs reportedly have signed 20-year old Cuban OF Eddy Julio Martinez for $3M bonus. 

  • BLOCK: Of course any advantage is an advantage. An MLB, NBA, or NHL team getting the extra game at home in a seven game series is an advantage, I just don't think it is enough of an advantage for winning a division and/or having the best record in a conference or league over the course of an 82-game season (NBA and NHL) or 162 game series (MLB).

  • TEX takes the opening game from TOR (@TOR) 5-3.

    TOR lost bautista + donaldson in-game due to injuries...TEX lost beltre...dunno if any will be lingering issues leading to missed games.

  • Ride the Kid Magic! Schwarber hadn't homered in a long time before last night.

  • Greg Maddux was 8-18 in his rookie season. Kyle has the 8 wins down pat.

    Think Baby Maddux.

    Prof. Harold Hill's THINK system at work.

    Kyle is on the far left.

  • I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.

  • Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.

  • That was good!

  • Well said. On one hand, I thought the HBP was a bad baseball play -- down 4 runs, put a runner on for a red-hot Fowler. On the other hand, they needed to do something -- I hadn't thought about the warning/pitching inside point. Is Hurdle that smart? He does not strike me that way. By the way -- not clear which fan base you are referring to in your "first" 3rd point.

  • My unsolicited opinions on topics covered in this thread:
    1. I hate the fact that after 162 games, a team could be out after 1 game. However, I think the system is pretty close to perfect right now. 2 of 3 isn't feasible unless they shorten the regular season, and it ices the division winners for way too long. This creates excitement, and rewards the division winners.

  • Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.

  • Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.

    How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?

    Call me lost.

  • Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.