A's Big Hits Doom Cubs

Jack Cust hit a solo homer run and a two-run double, and Bobby Crosby slugged a three-run homer, leading the Oakland A’s to a 6-4 victory over the Cubs this afternoon at warm and sunny HoHoKam Park in Mesa.

box score  


Carlos Zambrano got the start for the Cubs, and worked four strong innings (61 pitches, 38 strikes, 2/6 GB/FB). For the day “Z” allowed four hits, one run, no walks, and three strikeouts, and one HR (Cust lead-off dinger in the 2nd) in his four innings of work.

Kerry Wood followed Zambrano, pitching the 5th inning (ten pitches, ground single to CF, a 4-6-3 DP, and F-7).

Scott Eyre came into the game in the 6th and could not finish his inning. He threw 27 pitches in 0.2 IP, allowing a single, a walk, and a three-run HR to Crosby, followed by a double and a walk, before being relieved by Bob Howry. Eyre had nothing today.

Howry got out of the 6th without further damage, but then he got yanked with one out in the 7th after allowing two singles and going 3-2 on every hitter.

Michael Wuertz relieved Howry, and immediately gave up a ringing two-run double to Cust that scored both runners. Wuertz then retired the next five in a row, two on strikes, and three on pop ups.

Carlos Marmol worked the 9th, (26 pitches - 16 strikes) and struck out the side, although he also allowed a single and a walk along the way.

Offensively, the Cubs scored two in the 5th, and two in the 8th.

Facing A's closer Huston Street in the bottom of the 5th, Geovany Soto drew a two-out walk, and scored on a triple lined into the right-field corner by Sam Fuld. PH Casey McGehee then lined a single to CF, scoring Fuld.

In the 8th, Alfonso Soriano led-off with a double into the left-centerfield alley of LHP Gio Gonzalez. Ryan Theriot followed with a triple to right-center, and The Riot scored on a hard-hit L-8 Sac Fly by Kosuke Fukudome.

For the day, Soriano went 2-4 with a CS, Theriot went 2-3 with a walk, a single, an RBI triple, and a run scored, and Sam Fuld went 1-3 with a walk, an RBI triple, and a run scored.

Fuld also made two outstanding catches in CF, one a back-handed diving catch in right-center to end the 1st, and the other a running catch in left-center to save a run in the 8th.

Soriano misplayed a line-drive in the 1st for a two base error, but chased the ball into the left-field corner, recovering just in time to throw a one-hop strike to Aramis Ramirez, getting Carlos Gonzalez in a “bang-bang” play at 3rd base.


AZ Phil,

What have you seen from Casey McGehee's improved hitting? Is he in consideration for a 25-man roster spot at all, or is he doomed to "organizational player" status?

Submitted by SheffieldCornelia on Tue, 03/11/2008 - 6:59pm.

 AZ Phil, What have you seen from Casey McGehee's improved hitting? Is he in consideration for a 25-man roster spot at all, or is he doomed to "organizational player" status?


SHEF: I think McGehee has the bat to make it as a back-up C-3B-1B-RHPH, but whether that would be with the Cubs or (eventually) someplace else would depend on the Cubs roster configuration as far as the make-up of the bench is concerned.

He doesn't fit right now, but that could change in 2009, especially once Blanco is gone. .

cubs should put all their money in pitching and have ty wiggington, mark derosa, and casey mcgehee play all 8 fielding positions.


great. now that theyve cut takatsu im going to have to suffer through the usual barrage of close-ups on japanese TV that will highlight his valiant stint trying to hang on with a MLB club, only to fail and be faced with what to do in this stage of his career, with heart-rending comments from his supporting wife and ex-teammates and yadda yadda yadda...

....wait a minute, its the cubs!
fuggin sweet! whoo-hoo!!

from Yahoo sports:

Cubs CF Felix Pie returned to camp, one day after undergoing an outpatient procedure for a minor groin injury. The Cubs said they expect Pie to be able to play by Friday or Saturday.


and the LouPa quote from the above Yahoo sports link:

“I’m getting a little concerned about a couple of our guys,” Piniella said. “Look, we don’t have much longer. I’m going to have to start getting them in there a little more often. Forget these days off.”

Piniella had been using his regulars for two days in a row and then giving them a day off.

dlee's having a quietly horrid spring training.

his batting cage workouts are probably the only thing keeping the press from talking about it too much. hell, have they even touched on it?

then again ichiro's 0 for 21 and called it "fun" today. =p

to take the spin outta that comment and take the full quote for what its worth...

"To tell you the truth, some of this is kind of fun," he added. "To be in a situation this early, in spring training, and have this kind of a little bit intense environment is something I couldn't experience before. Basically, it's a situation where I need to battle within myself mentally. That's something I haven't experienced this time of the year. ... This is great for me."

Joe Sheehan, from baseball prospectus, really has it in for Dusty in this latest piece titled, "The Teflon Manager"


a few excerpts:

I also see a team with a manager completely and totally ill-suited to his personnel, with an outsized reputation that far exceeds his actual performance and more control over the roster than he should be allowed. Sometimes I think I’m too hard on Dusty Baker, given that he has managed successful teams, made postseasons, won a pennant, owns a career .527 winning percentage from the dugout. Maybe I make him a caricature, a toothpick-chewing, OBP-hating Luddite who doesn’t trust anyone under 30.

Then he starts talking…
“On [Joey] Votto: ‘He needs to swing some more. I talked to him about that. Strikeouts aren’t the only criteria. I’d like to see him more aggressive.’
“’A lot of this on-base percentage is taking away from the aggressiveness of some young kids. Most of the time you’ve got to put handcuffs on a young to keep him from swinging.’”

(A nod to John Fay at the Cincinnati Enquirer.)
One other important trait about Baker is that he’s the Teflon manager. The local press fawns over him in a way that would be embarrassing if it wasn’t just slightly worse than par for the course in the profession. Baker’s anti-intellectualistic approach to baseball dovetails nicely with the pervasive press backlash against reality-based coverage and administration of baseball teams.

So it’s a new city, a new team, a new roster, and the same naked emperor...He picks the wrong players to play, teaches an offensive approach that is counterproductive, and emphasizes secondary and tertiary traits such as speed and experience over primary ones such as getting on base and power.

AZ - Assuming the Cubs don't try an make a trade by opening day What are the chances that Sam Fuld makes this team as the 4th outfielder option?

no way he makes final 25

must have been taken right after the ceremony


Everyone in that video, except for Sean, is really short.

i found more brian roberts brand rumor gasoline. this one's been burning since mid-Dec with the intensity and persistence of a coal mine fire.

from the houston chronicle...."Loretta in trade talks"


Anyone know what the standard cutoff date is for a player's age?

When they talk about his age 31 season, there's usually a cutoff, which I think is July 1st or August 1st. Let's say it's August 1st and a player's b-day is July 30th and he turns 32. They call it his age 32 season. But if it was August 2nd, they'd still call it his age 31 season.

Any help would be appreciated...

Conventional use is opening day.

BRef and most other encyclopedias use July 1st, I believe.

When I write my Memoirs, its totally going to be May 13th

Recent comments

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  • Yes!!!

    Thanks crunch!!

    It's mesmerizing

    jacos 4 hours 28 min ago view
  • 5 HR in his last 5 games (3, 1 run...1, 2 run)

    sure, 3 HR were in colorado, but 2 were in night games in SD. that evens out somehow.

    crunch 5 hours 17 min ago view
  • Good work!

    John Beasley 6 hours 50 min ago view
  • crunch 13 hours 28 min ago view
  • My guy Addy

    jacos 13 hours 28 min ago view
  • oh, another a.russell HR...whatever.

    crunch 13 hours 42 min ago view
  • Dylan Cease throwing gas tonight for the Emeralds. In first three innings, has hit 100 mph six times, averaging 98 mph

    Eric S 14 hours 1 min ago view
  • Can I get a gif of Joe West's jowls waving as he chews gum?

    /Asking for a friend

    jacos 14 hours 25 min ago view
  • my gawd...that castillo-to-bryant pickoff was a thing of beauty. the knock on him in the minors being slow out of the crouch is looking less like a thing.

    crunch 14 hours 37 min ago view
  • bless your heart. *pinches cheeks*

    crunch 19 hours 34 min ago view
  • real shame I missed this week's episode of The Crunch Reporter.

    It's highly unusual.

    It does matter a little.

    It matters much less than you think.



    Rob G. 19 hours 36 min ago view
  • four winds field is awesome. it's crazy how minor league parks have "grown up" since the 80s/90s and that park was one of the late-80s models that showed a low-capacity ballpark could look like you're at something other than a highschool baseball game.

    crunch 20 hours 41 min ago view
  • On another topic....I returned to South Bend last night for the 2nd time this season (still haven't tried either the deep-fried mac & cheese sandwich nor "The Porknado", as the drive home is over an hour and that could get ugly), and was pleasantly surprised to find D. Underwood pitching in a rehab start. He looked good -- although, to be fair, these are low-A hitters -- fastball consistently at 94-95 (if the SB scoreboard is to be believed -- several pitches were clocked in the 30s...) and with good location.

    billybucks 21 hours 50 min ago view
  • he gains nothing, no advantage, no saving of resources, nothing...there is not a cost/benefit tradeoff...him letting the running game go on around him for others to control isn't gaining him an advantage elsewhere. it's putting him at a disadvantage even if it's not cashed in with a run.

    crunch 1 day 30 min ago view
  • And out of respect for the rest of TCR, I'm done on this. I'm sure I'm not the only one in the other camp, but time to let it go. (Until the next Lester start. I kid.)


    Tito 1 day 33 min ago view
  • He is putting himself at a disadvanage. But how much of one relative to the rest of his game? He's not Justin Germano -- he's inarguably one of the best SPs in baseball, issue or not. It would be more of thing to discuss ad nauseum if it constantly caused him to give up runs and lose games. But it doesn't.


    Tito 1 day 43 min ago view