Game 54 Recap: Cubs 10, Braves 1
And now, for something entirely different...
W - Marshall (1-2), peace, tranquility, serenity and harmony
L - Cormier (0-1), discord, strife, turmoil and conflict
Things to take from the game:
1. No ejections, fights, ugly fan behavior, beanings, plague, pestilence, blown calls, or anything. Nothing.
2. The first inning
The Cubs half of the first featured a couple of typical Cubs plays. On a base hit to ride, Quade held Pie at third instead of testing Francouer's arm, which seemed unfortunate when Francouer then bobbled the ball. Then, Jones hit a bouncer that appeard headed for right field and an RBI, when the ball bounced into Aramis as he attempted to hurdle it. There's one we haven't seen yet, this year. Dead ball, Aramis out, Pie has to stay at third.
Any other day, this would have been another wasted inning. Today, however, DeRosa picks us up with a two-out Grand Slam. By the third inning, we were on the good side of a blowout.
3. Marshall continues to pitch well
Very well. Lots of first-pitch strikes, a sharp curve, good fastball, and really no trouble at all until the seventh, his final inning. 8 K and 1 BB.
4. The top of the order
Soriano had a homer and a triple. Pie went 2 for 5, including an all-speed double. Lee went 3 for 5 with a HR. Between then, they scored 7 runs. Ramirez and Jones also had a couple of hits, to boot.
All the happy details, below.
- Pie's first AB, he hits a ball back up the middle, just to the left of second base. Nice piece of hitting.
- Pie advances to second on a Lee single, and then on an Aramis opposite-field single, Quade holds Pie up at third, not wanting to test Francouer's arm. But Francouer bobbles it, and Pie would have been able to score easily thanks to the bobble. Instead, Pie limps a little bit back to third, after having put on the hard brakes.
- and here's something we haven't yet seen in the season... Jones hits a ground ball that looks like it'll get through to right field, until.... it hits Aramis Ramirez, who was jumping to get out of the way. Dead ball. Ramirez is out, Jones gets first base and is credited with a hit, and Pie stays at third. Bases now loaded. Two lost chances to score Pie...
- And in the single most improbable event of the season, to date, DeRosa comes through with a 2 out grand slam to save what looked to be yet another disasterously incompetent inning. 4 run lead to start the game for the Cubs.
- Marshall looks pretty sharp, early on. Nice 1-6-3 to end the top of the second, and some sharp curveballs for strikes.
- Soriano hits a HR into the LF-well basket. It pops up, out of the basket and onto the field. Froeming doesn't see it, (Brenley correctly notes he wasn't exactly hustling to get out and see the play as it developed) and calls it an in-play ball, for a double. Trammel asks Froeming to confer with the other umps, and they reverse the call, correctly calling in a HR. 5-0 cubs after 2.
- it's a HR-per-inning pace, as Lee hits one into the right-center baskets. Thank you, wind.
- Marshall still looks great, striking Renteria out on an inside fastball. Curve still looks sharp, too, through four.
- Soriano triples in the fifth, when Jones doesn't get back to the warning track in time to make the catch, and slightly misplays it. After he misses, he gets tangled in the vines, and overthrows the cutoffmen to third. Soriano with a triple. More importantly, it looked like he was running well, all the way.
- Pie up next, and he hits a broken bat single that scores Soriano, then stretches it into a double as he runs on Francouer. A fun play to watch, Pie's speed and Francouer's fielding and arm... 7-0 cubs. A few patters later, Jones singles in Pie, and it's 8-0. Nice AB for Jones as he lines the ball into left. and DeRosa hits a sac fly to scoree Lee, who had singled earlier in the inning. 9-0 through 5, and DeRosa with 5 RBI.
- Hendry appears in public, for an interview with Len and Bob. Convienient, it's a 9-0 lead. highlights include him saying he doesn't want finger-pointing and blaming people (how convienient, since so much of it is directed at him) and mentions that he has faith in guys like Howry turning it around. (Interstingly, he doesn't mention Eyre.) Plays down the fight, and the Lou'splosion. Says Pie is here for the rest of the year. Says the draft is Tim Wilken's responsibility, exclusively.
- Interview ends as Lee grabs a ball hit down the line, then races to first for the out, as Marshall forgot to cover the bag. Keep pitching like this, and we'll forgive you, Sean.
- Marshall just demolished Andruw Jones's bat. Jones popped the ball up to short, with the barrel of the bat sailing into the stands, where Some Big Dude caught it.
- With hits for Renteria, McCann and Diaz, Marshall is chased from the game in the 7th with a 9-1 lead.
- Pie with an AB against lefty McKay McBride. Battles, but strikes out.
- Saltalamacchia in at first, and has struggled with it. Kicked around a ground ball for awhile, before fielding it unassisted, and now throws one away to second, resulting in another Run scoring.
- you can tell the game is over when Len and Bob start talking about mending pants. that's pretty much the conversation in the bottom of the 8th.
- Bases loaded for Pie in the 8th, and he has a good AB before getting called out on a strike 3 that seemed to be off of the plate.
Meaningless phrases like "Commitment to excellence" and "Dedicated to winning." Typhoons and other cool whether phenomena. Disbelief. Trammel for manager.
Alan Trammel campagin slogans. What's Lou doing right now? Evaluating the celebrity batkids: are they either celebrities, or kids? Bob Patterson. The AA Braves manager's ejection antics. For whom can we trade Froeming?
The Yankees (wtf!?!). More on Froeming: he is a large man. Brenley's over-use of the word byproduct. Michael Barrett and Lou Piniella dance-moves. Fontenot Worship. Bad Contracts.
Who an what is over/underrated. (Answer: everything) More What Is Lou Doing Now thoughts... Golden Girls fetishes. Charles Nelson Reilly reminiscences.
Sean Marshall is good. More on CNR. More on the match game. How long can we talk about CNR? Flaming celebrities.
Hendry interview in the WGN booth. Signs of the apocalypse.
The stretch. Ron Santo interviewing himself. When to pull Marshall. Proof of having a pulse. If we traded for Salt(alamacchia), to join Pie and Cherry. Creative misspellings of Saltalamacchia.
"What is the demographic overlap between Cubs baseball and 'Moesha'?" - courtesy of O_Julius. More potential names for Len's next garage band. Pasty old women in canoes. Crap on a stick. Googling "crap on a stick" and finding Jesus. Pants. If the Cubs were a pro-wrestling federation.
Those attrocious DQ adds with the ice cream and waffle cone. Winning.
I think while I get what you're saying with moving around a lot of baseball is very rhythm based and for many players moving around a lot could disrupt that. It's the same reason many players aren't cut out for phing or dhing since they need to be in the rhythm of the game to hit.
Of course then you have players like LaStella who are terrible as starters and should only PH. Really hope Madden doesn't get enthralled with him starting too much.
The players are required to perform with minimal thinking, relying on reflex, reaction, and muscle memory (or, as you say, rhythm). I think this point of view doesn't lend itself well to changing things up. Wearing Zany suits, on the other hand, does sound like fun and definitely keeps things interesting.
Scared me for a minute with your anagram for "Almora".
KKVG: Among the players at Extended Spring Training, Isaac Paredes is the most-impressive position-player from the Cubs 2015-16 IFA class (I'm not including OF Eddy Julio Martinez, because he skipped EXST and began the season at South Bend). Paredes has legit game power and handles himself well at SS, although I think he will likely eventually end-up at 2B or 3B (maybe not this year, but down-the-line). It is possible that Paredes will get assigned to Eugene (and skip AZL) next month, and I would say he's the only one of the Cubs 2015-16 IFA position players who could.
Having been a mediocre HS player, I would think at a professional level - and in their 20's - doesn't it sound actually FUN to have a chance to play different positions in a 162-Game, uber-long season?
It has to take some of the monotony out of the job and keep you on your toes.
In fact, the best manufacturing floor job satisfaction training theories include job rotation as a way to improve employee satisfaction.
I hope Maddon can keep it going.
(It's usually KK, because his DNA is more like ours.)
Not just Maddon, but the organization as a whole. If the rumors are to be believed, they did a good job of letting Baez learn that he needed to change his approach, and Baez has done a good job listening to their instructions an adapting. Hopefully the same is true of Alomar, who is ripping up AAA.
Previous management teams haven't been as good at this (e.g. Corey Patterson).
Man, this team makes you greedy. Going into Pittsburgh -- with Cole vs. Hammel Game 1 -- I was hoping for 2 out of 3. After winning the first 2 games 14-3, I now want a sweep. Same thing happened in STL. Very, very fun.
Repeating myself, but I give Maddon a lot of credit for Baez's success. Instead of talking about monster HRs and high K totals, he has talked up his defense, versatility and being a "special" player. The kid seems to have responded.
BOB: The attendance has taken a big hit since you left.
K-DUB: I think the Cubs might consider skipping Dylan Cease past South Bend and starting him at Myrtle Beach next season, especially if he gets some time at South Bend this season and pitches well there. As a southern kid with TJS history, pitching at Myrtle Beach in April is probably a lot more attractive than pitching in South Bend, but Cease can't go to Myrtle Beach if he isn't ready for Hi-A.
His story makes him someone I completely root for to succeed but it's interesting that he's not succeeding in the way anyone thought when he was just a prospect. Great defense and contact instead of power. I think failing so glaringly and getting sent back down might have been the best thing for him and his ego.
He still swings at too many balls out of the strike zone but he's making a lot more contact on them which I think is helped by the less violent swing. So we might not get all the HRs we were expecting but I'll gladly take what he's giving.
"KingKongVsGodzilla"? So - was there a winner?
Baez is looking like a pretty special player.
Love checking TCR for your writeups. Quick question - any of these 2015 positional IFAs stand out to you yet? I'm most specifically referring to Kwon, Sierra, Paredes, and Amaya, but I know there's a couple other guys from that class in EXST as well.
bored...looking at stats for the hell of it...
felix pena (26yo) moving to the pen in AAA is looking like an insanely good fit so far in a smallish sample size
13ip 4h 3bb 20K
remembering back to spring training he was regularly hitting mid-90s (though he didn't have a good spring stats-wise). as a starter in the minors he usually worked low-90s.
this could be an arm worth keeping an eye on even if he's only a 1-inning guy who was "demoted" to the pen to start the year.