Giant Relentless Attack Too Much for Cubs to Overcome
Shilo McCall drilled a two-run single and a solo home run and scored twice, Jonah Arenado ripped an RBI single and two doubles and scored a run, Carlos Valdez singled twice, doubled, and scored three runs, Tyler Hollick smacked an RBI double, singled, walked, and scored a run, Julio Pena doubled twice and singled, and John Riley hammered a solo HR, as the Giants pounded out 19 hits (including seven doubles and two home runs) en route to a 10-5 victory over the Cubs in Cactus League Extended Spring Training Memorial Day action on Field #6 at the Under Armour Performance Center at Riverview Park in Mesa, AZ.
Jeffrey Baez and Varonex Cuevas belted solo home runs for the Cubs.
The EXST Cubs hit only three HR over their first 37 Cactus League games, but they have hit nine HR over their last nine Cactus League Extended Spring Training games.
2014 EXST CUBS HOME RUNS (thru 5/26 - 46 games): 12
Jeffrey Baez - 2
Erick Castillo - 2
Rashad Crawford - 2
Varonex Cuevas - 2
Tyler Alamo - 1
Zak Blair - 1
Kevin Brown - 1
Rony Rodriguez - 1
RHRP Kyuji Fujikawa (on Cubs MLB 60-day DL - 2013 TJS rehab) started the game for the Cubs and threw a 14-pitch 1-2-3 1st inning (F-8, 6-3, K-looking). Fujikawa has thrown three times in the last six days, working one inning each time (40 pitches total - 23 strikes - 58% K), and he has retired all nine men he has faced in those 3.0 IP (4-3, F-9, P-3, K, F-8, 3-1, F-8, 6-3, K).
RHP Erick Leal had his second consecutive poor outing, allowing seven runs (all earned) on 11 hits (including four doubles and two HR) and a walk in 5.0 IP (71 pitches). Over his last two games (8.0 IP - 141 pitches) Leal has allowed 13 runs (12 ER), 15 hits, and five walks.
The game was pre-planned as a 12-inning contest so that all of the Giants and Cubs pitchers who were scheduled to throw today could get their work.
Here is the abridged box score from today's game (Cubs players only):
1a. Jeffrey Baez, CF: 1-3 (HR, 5-3, P-6, R, RBI)
1b. Rashad Crawford, CF: 0-3 (6-3 DP, K, K)
2a. Kevin Brown, LF: 2-3 (1B, 1B, F-9)
2b. Ricardo Marcano, LF: 0-2 (K, BB, 6-3)
3a. Shamil Ubiera, RF: 2-3 (1B, 6-4-3 DP, 1B+E3)
3b. Oliver Zapata, RF: 1-3 (2B, 6-U FC, F-8, SB)
4a. Eloy Jimenez, DH: 0-3 (K, F-8, F-7)
4b. Rony Rodriguez, PH-DH: 0-3 (6-3, 5-3, P-4)
5a. Justin Marra, 1B: 1-3 (K, 2B, F-7, R)
5b. Alberto Mineo, 1B: 0-2 (K, 3-U)
6a. Gleyber Torres, SS: 0-3 (6-3, 3-U, 5-3)
6b. Bryant Flete, SS: 0-1 (BB, 1-3, R, SB)
7a. Mark Malave, C: 1-3 (5-3, 2B, K, R, RBI)
7b. Antonio Valerio, C: 1-2 (F-8, 1B)
8a. Varonex Cuevas, 2B: 1-2 (HR, K, R, RBI)
8b. Dalfis Ortiz, 2B: 1-2 (BB, P-5, 1B)
9a. Jesse Hodges, 3B: 1-2 (K, 1B, RBI, CS)
9b. Roney Alcala, 3B: 1-3 (L-7, 1B, 3-1, RBI)
1. Kyuji Fujikawa: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 14 pitches (8 strikes)
2. Trey Masek: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, 1 WP, 16 pitches (13 strikes)
3. Erick Leal: 5.0 IP, 11 H, 7 R (7 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 2 HR, 1 BALK, 1 GIDP, 10/3 GO/FO, 71 pitches (48 strikes)
4. Alberto Diaz: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 2 WP, 2/1 GO/FO, 32 pitches (20 strikes)
5. David Garner: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 2 WP, 1 GIDP, 3/0 GO/FO, 18 pitches (12 strikes)
6. Greyfer Eregua: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 2/2 GO/FO, 27 pitches (20 strikes)
CUBS ERRORS: 1
3B Roney Alcala - E-5 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely)
CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Mark Malave: 1 PB
WEATHER: Sunny and a bit breezy with temperatures in the 90's
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "they never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.
Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.
Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.
There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!
Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.
Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.
Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.
Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.
Baez still learning
heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.
he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.
stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.
that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.
brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.
Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.