Cintron Comes Through When It Counts

Alex Cintron laced a two-out bases-loaded PH GW single into right-field, scoring Matt Murton with the winning run, as the Cubs defeated the Padres 3-2 this afternoon at HoHoKam Park in Mesa.

box score

 

Jason Marquis got the start for the Cubs, and worked four shutout innings (59 pitches - 31 strikes, 7/3 GB/FB). He allowed just two hits and two walks, along with two strikeouts and a GIDP, albeit facing mostly Padre minor leaguers.

Marquis did benefit from two outstanding plays in the field, one a leaping catch by Kosuke Fukudome againt the right-center-field fence that appeared to pull back a HR, and the other a running catch by Sam Fuld in left-center where the lad crashed into the fence but gamely hung onto the ball.

Sean Marshall followed Marquis to the hill, and pitched three innings (50 pitches - 32 strikes, 6/1 GB/FB), allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits (including a solo HR in the 5th), one walk, two K's, and a GIDP.

The second run allowed by Marshall was unearned, thanks to a two-out error (bobble) by SS Ryan Theriot that was immediately preceded by a walk and immediately followed by an RBI single. But overall, Marshall threw the ball OK, struggling a bit with his command, but otherwise not looking too bad.

Meanwhile, the Cubs were scoring two runs of their own, one in the 4th and one in the 6th.

The run in the 4th was driven home on a bases loaded L-7 Sac Fly by Sam Fuld after the Cubs loaded the bases with one out (single to LF by Kosuke Fukudome, infield single by Mark DeRosa, and a walk to Geovany Soto)

The Cubs run in the 6th came about as the result of a lead-off single to right by Fuld, a ground out and a throwing error, and a line-drive RBI single to center by Ryan Theriot.

With the score tied 2-2, Tim Lahey had a 1-2-3 five-pitch 8th inning that included two rockets chased down and caught by Fuld in CF, and Carlos Marmol worked the 9th, struggling through a 29-pitch inning (one hit and two walks, plus a K) that forced the youngster to work out of a bases-loaded jam of his own making while facing only Padres minor leaguers. Not an impressive outing for Marmol today.

So the Cubs went into the bottom of the 9th needing only one run to win.

Soto struck out swinging to lead-off the inning, and then Fuld tapped out unassisted to the 1st baseman. But Matt Murton worked a walk on a 3-2 pitch, and Micah Hoffpauir followed with a line-drive smash to LF that sent Murton to 2nd base. Daryle Ward was sent up to PH, and he drew a five-pitch walk, before Cintron came through with the game-winning hit.

Today marked the "new look" Cubs batting order, featuring Theriot in the lead-off slot, Soriano hitting 2nd, and Fukudome in the #5 hole. For the day Theriot went 2-4 with an RBI and a SB (uncontested off Greg Maddux), a 6-3 ground-out and a F-9 flyout, Soriano went 1-3 with a BB and two 5-3 ground-outs, and Fukudome went 1-4 with a run scored, a 4-3 ground out, and F-8 to deep CF, and a K-swinging (REALLY big swing on strike three!).

Derrek Lee continues to struggle at the plate (0-4 with a K and a GIDP today) and is now hitting just .107, but Mark DeRosa appears to be back in full-swing, going 2-3 with a double, a single, and a walk, and a couple of nice plays in the field.

 

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Comments

lahey is getting outs and not giving up runs...but is he looking good enough to actually carry on the roster with wood/howry/marmol and probably hart already looking like they're locked in?

Although Lee went O-4 he did manage to hit Maddux with a sharp come-backer that bruised Greg's leg and sent him to the showers early after only 2 of his scheduled 4 innings of work. Also FYI former Cubs 3rd radio man and pregame guy, Andy Masur, did the radio for the Pads today and I think he's going to be doing all of their games this season on XX sports radio in San Diego.

Masur did Pads radio all of last year.

Stupid 2-out base-clogging walks...

Back of the Rotation Update:
Dempster: 2-0 3.00 ERA in 9 innings
Marquis: 0-1 2.00 ERA in 9 IP
Marshall: 0-0 3.24 ERA in 8.1 IP
Lieber: 1-0 3.00 ERA in 6 IP

Dempster's supposed to pitch tonight a. the Angels.

"Sources confirmed Thursday that the Cubs have a four-player offer for Roberts on the table that includes the addition of hard-throwing pitching prospect Jose Ceda. Infielder Ronny Cedeno and pitchers Sean Gallagher and Donnie Veal also are in the package."

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball/cubs/84238...

If that could net Roberts, then wow. There are no big league players in there except Cedeno, and I consider him... eh... borderline big leaguer. It's fun to finally being on the receiving end of Andy MacPhail's madness.

On the poll, who should be the Cub's closer, I think it's pretty clear to everyone it should be Cotts. J/K, I voted Zeus.

Were you also kidding about the Roberts trade? I think we would be overpaying with that package.

I agree, the upgrade in production at 2B, plus the increase in payroll doesn't justify the trade in my opinion. Now if Roberts was a SS, then i would say go for it.

lol, no, and I respectfully and vehemently disagree that the Cub's would be overpaying. But if I've learned anything here at TCR, it is that the TCR crowd is so enamored by the idea of a prospect that they would prefer the organization hold on to them, at all costs, even if said prospect won't likely contribute to the big league club for up to five or six years.

*sigh*

When a player comes up through a good farm system, for example, the Milwaukee Brewers system, and they hit the free agent market, the big market teams will buy them after their talent has matured. This is just the natural order of things.

Ryno:
"But if I've learned anything here at TCR, it is that the TCR crowd is so enamored by the idea of a prospect that they would prefer the organization hold on to them, at all costs, even if said prospect won't likely contribute to the big league club for up to five or six years."

Not Me... I think the farm system blows for the most part, but like I posted there needs to be cost/reward analysis and considering the cost in money, prospects and level of improvement at the position, I don't think the trade is justified. I have no problem with the Cubs trading away prospects because for the most part their "prospects" have busted, even the ones that were supposedly good. But I think it is overpaying because there are more pertinent positions that should or will need to be upgraded through out the year and having those chips down the orad might be more beneficial.

I actually love this trade and would do it in a heartbeat. You get an all-star, lead off hitter signed through 2009 at the price we are paying Marquis. You give up a back-up shortstop, likely two future relievers in Veal and Ceda, and a future 3-4 starter in Gallagher. I like Gallagher a lot, but you have to give up something to get something. The rest I'm not concerned about. We don't need Cedeno at all and he has to stay on the Major League roster, Veal projects a reliever and had an ERA of nearly 5.00 last year at AA, and while Ceda is a power arm, we have a few of those and can part with one who is rough and still a ways away from the bigs.

Something else not being considered is if Soriano does move down in the lineup and his numbers do drop off, like his past stats show, then you are also losing that production because of the trade for Robert and making him leadoff.

I am not a big fan of the belief in Soriano not being able to perform the same at any position in the lineup, but it seems like he and many others do think he will do worse lower down than at lead off.

For the minimal upgrade that Roberts gives you. You give up the guy who probably SHOULD be the Starting SS. Your probable best LH Reliever by midseason. Your Best SP prospect AND your best bullpen prospect? Who are we even bidding against? Screw McPhail on this one. Wait him out and wait for something else to come along. Not to mention that after this deal is done. What ammo do we have left in the system to replace any injury that occurs? It's HIGH past time for Hendry to walk away on this guy. McFail thinks he can hold Hendry hostage.

I disagree. I think Cedeno will be a big league utilty man and is not a starter. Freddie Bynum v.2.0 (minus the speed). If Veal goes from an ERA nearly 5.00 in AA to better than Eyre, Cotts, and Pignatello at the big league level between now and the next 3 months I'll be very surprised. Ceda is talented, but we have a full bullpen and more arms like his on the way up. I do hate to lose Gallagher, but you have to give up something to get something.

Do you view Ryan Theriot as an MLB caliber Starting SS?

I'm not going to turn this into a Theriot debate. You can see my many comments on this in the past and figure out my stance fairly quickly. But considering their full seasons of 2006 and 2007 respectively, Cedeno's OBP was nearly 60 POINTS LOWER!! So if you don't think Theriot should be starting, you shouldn't think Cedeno should be starting.

Mainly I just think we are always too optimistic about our prospects. In 2006 Mark Pawelek was our #2 prospect according to Baseball America - far more coveted than Veal is. Heck that same year Ricky Nolasco was #7 and Brian Dopirak was #9. The sheer law of numbers says that most of these simply don't pan out. Sure, Cedeno could be a all-star shortstop, Ceda could turn into Marmol #2, Gallagher could be a top of the rotation starter, and Veal becomes Billy Wagner. The chances of that happening though is far far less than the chances that Roberts will have two good seasons for the Cubs. Most likley Gallagher becomes Mitre, Ceda becomes Farnsworth, Veal becomes Cotts, and Cedeno becomes Bynum. I'd prefer the Orioles have those guys and we win the World Series. And even if one or two pan out and do well, I still think we'll come out ahead.

Dr. Aaron b:
"McFail thinks he can hold Hendry hostage."

Well, Hendry does owe him for giving Hendry that sweetheart contract on his way out the door.

I'm totally cool with cost analyzing these trades... I'm not saying trade away prospects for fun. I'm saying prospects are sometimes overrated and overvalued.

Put another way: It's a ton easier to get your hands on a good prospect than it is an All-Star caliber switch hitter.

I totally agree with you about people overvaluing prospects. I just fear that we will be caught short if a legitimate need does arise. If Z or Ted Lilly go down after we make this trade. Who do we have in the system who could net us an AJ Burnett? If Brian Roberts were a SS. I'd say do the deal yesterday. However that fact that he plays 2nd base makes getting him a lateral move. Especially when you consider that Veal is probably the dominant loogy that the cubs need, and Ronny Cedeno is probably the SS upgrade that the club needs.

As I believe the Cubs are going to be on the wrong side of the Success Cycle in a couple of years, those it seems to me that over paying for a player like Roberts is a reasonable course of action.

I don't mind seeing prospects traded at all. In fact, I think prospects really have more value as trading chips than they do as potential roster fodder, given how many will fizzle out at the MLB level.

It's just a cost/benefit thing for me. This rumored deal doesn't maximize our benefit for the cost; those prospects could be better used to provide us with a true upgrade in CF, SS, or in the starting rotation. To draw a crude analogy, it's like we have $10K to fix up our house, and we're using it to replace the year old Pergo flooring with Brazilian hardwood when we should be using it to replace the 15 year old leaky roof.

I'm all for it if we win the WS because of it, and I'm against it if we don't.

lol

Okay, understood and I agree.

Maybe we could send Derosa to hypnotherapy and convince him he's really a SS.

That's crazy talk, unless the Orioles threw a second player into the deal to convince the Cubs to give up Ceda. I can't believe a second baseman would be worth a shortstop and 3 pitchers...that's almost the same structure (obviously with less talent) of the package the Mets gave up for Johan!

Ceda, Gallagher, Veal, and Cedeno for Roberts? No.

i could live with that deal giving up ceda would be tough though

baltimore is in a bad spot with starting staff another possible
injury to 5th starter. they need to make a move
we have prospects for 2 reasons
1.to develop for the cubs (which i dont like the track record)
2. to trade for proven talent.

Win now! That's about all that needs to be said. Of course, we're over-paying. Welcome to Major League Baseball of the 21st century. I say bring it on and watch our back of the rotation win 10+ each with 4.00+ ERA because of our ridiculous offense.

Derosa 2007: .371 OBP, 10HR, .420 SLG
Roberts 2007: .377 OBP, 12 HR, .432 SLG

Difference is obviously speed (50 SB for Roberts).

I agree with the prospects comments (the JVB comments yesterday were a stark reminder) -- but, if we are going to "spend" some prospects, let's fill a real need -- a SS who is an offensive force, a non-retread SP, killer LOOGY, etc.

Actually the biggest difference is the side of the plate he stands on when he bats.

if the trade were meant to move Soriano down to the #5 hole I'd like it more because it's likely Ceda will be the only player in the deal who could turn out to be an impact player. And of course this trade will almost assuredly include Marquis and Jay Payton so you get Marquis' contract off the books for this and next year and Payton becomes a FA so he'll be gone. Then again knowing Hendry's mo, the Cubs will probably be on the hook for all remaining money due to Marquis.

Cedeno, Gallagher, Ceda and Veal for Roberts = maybe

Cedeno, Gallagher, Ceda, Veal and Marquis* for Roberts and Payton = in a heartbeat

*and NO $$

Go for it!

I'd probably do that deal. I think Cedeno and Gallagher would be tough to part with, but I'm willing to deal with it. Ceda reminds me of a lot of other "closers of the future" that we've had that throws 96. I like him, but I always get skeptical about our relief prospects.

Veal's the guy that really hurts for me, but he's only going to be as good as his control is. If he doesn't start throwing some freaking strikes, he ain't going to be any good to anybody. There really isn't a "sure-thing" prospect in that group. And for that reason, I'll trade 'em for a good top of the order OBP guy who can get out and run a little bit.

Maybe the upgrade to 2B isn't that great, but to me, the upgrade at the top of the order if it gets Theriot out of the god damn leadoff spot is worth every penny.

Perhaps the best part about this trade is the depth that it gives the Cubs. We all know that A-Ram is not going to play over 120 games and what if D-Lee gets hurt, or Soriano goes out for 25 games again. I agree that Roberts isn't as big of an upgrade at 2B as we would all like, but it does allow the Cubs to have a great backup when A-Ram, Soriano, or D-Lee go down, in DeRosa. This trade would do three great things: add speed at the top, allow Soriano to not hit leadoff (thank God), and allow the versitility of DeRo to be utilized.

Mainly I just think **we** are always too optimistic about our prospects. In 2006 Mark Pawelek was our #2 prospect according to Baseball America - far more coveted than Veal is.

**WE** are NOT Baseball America. It's not OUR fault if those clowns don't know what they're talking about most of the time.

There's got to be something seriously wrong with people who cannot see that the Cubs organization has produced

1) our two leading candidates for starting CF
2) our starting SS
3) our backup 2B
4) our starting catcher
5) Micah Hoffpauir
6) our 4th and 5th OF
7) our #1, #3, #5 pitchers
8) 2 of the 3 leading candidates for closer

Well, which one is it? Is Baseball America (along with a ton of other organizations that rank prospects) a bunch of clowns? Or are the people on the clownlist making contributions for the Cubs (your 1-8)?

But like I said before. If you think Gallagher is going to be Zambrano, Veal is going to be Rich Hill, Ceda is going to be Marmol, and Cedeno is also going to be a star - then yeah, don't make the trade. I don't think that's the case and that's why I am all for it.

The problem I have with your list is that at the current time, the only members of that list who we know are any good are the first and second points of #7 and #8. Now the jury is still out on #1 and #4, but is any of the rest of that really something to proud of?

The only thing to be proud of on that list is Z, Hill and Marmol, with an honorable mention to Wood. Pie and Soto get a incomplete as of right now, but for the rest...ugh!!

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