The Blind Cub Squirrel Finds a Nut and Friday Notes

I watched not one second of Friday's affair. I managed about 10 minutes of Internet access and caught the 2-1 score, posted this premature comment and then later flipped on my XM radio to catch the final 5-2 win. The good news is the Cubs got a win and Milton Bradley and Alfonso Soriano went a combined 6/6 with 1 HR, 1 2B, 3 RBI, 2 Runs Scored and 2 BB's. The bad news was the comedy of errors from the offensive heroes and the Cubs needing a dramatic come-from-behind win against a team missing their five best players.

Some links and notes after the jump...

- Bruce Levine is sticking with the Minnesota Twins as the team awarded the claim on Rich Harden. How he got past the entire NL is a little confusing with the way he's pitching and the rather minimal committment left on his contract.  I don't hold high hopes that the Twins would take the rest of his contract and give up top prospects for Harden. And it looks like the San Francisco Giants were awarded the claim on Aaron Heilman. The Sun-Times says a few more Cubs were claimed, but doesn't offer up any names.

- In minor league news, 2009 first round pick Brett Jackson has been placed on the disabled list with inflammation in his right wrist. He should be back for Peoria's playoff run as they have already clinched a playoff spot in the Midwest League. As of this writing, Iowa is a 1.5 back of Memphis and tied with Nashville with just over a week left in the PCL season. In Double A, Tennessee is tied with West Tennessee and the two teams finish the season with a five-game set.

- The Daytona Cubs aren't going to be repeating as FSL champs, but they've thrown their second combined no-hitter in the last two weeks. Both times  20-year old pitcher Oswaldo Martinez was involved and he has not given up an earned run in 10.1 IP since joining Daytona.This time he combined with Mike Perconte on the no-hitter, last time it was a four pitcher effort with Martinez, Craig Muschko, Chris Siegfried and David Cales.

- Alfonso Soriano is set to have his MRI on Monday.

- I've got some Internet troubles at home, so dont' expect much from me this weekend, hence this hastily done post.

 

Comments

Completely off-topic, but it's good to see former Cub Felix Pie getting some PT in Baltimore with Adam Jones on the DL.

.271/.332/.442, 6HR and 21 RBI in 201 PA's.

If he'd done even this with the Cubs, he'd still be here.

"If he'd done even this with the Cubs, he'd still be here."

Done, what, had a chance to play?

Ok. you can stop. I was a big Pie supporter. I thought the Cubs botched handling his development as a player, and never gave him even a full season to be the CF. I hope he plays well in Baltimore, or wherever he goes.

That was the first thing I really disliked about Hendry's off-season. Signing Bradley to play right field made a lot less sense without Pie around to back him, and Fukudome's continuing suckage up.

Pie would have been given more playing time if he wasn't dragging into the clubhouse worse for wear after of night of P-hounding with his boy Soriano. He wasn't focussing on the game, much like Sori now. Focus on the game, not the females in the stands, jackass.
This 2009 squad does not care most of the time and it shows.

I guess its make stuff up about Soriano day.

I've heard once or twice that Pie and Soriano were out late drinking and chasing skirts together, but does anyone know this for sure? And if it is true, is it really that unusual? I think it's quite a jump to say that Pie and Soriano stayed out late to then say that their late nights hurt their on-field performance.

Rob G.: "dont' expect much from me this weekend"

Don't worry, we are not expecting much from the Cubs either this weekend.

Heilman's glass half full or empty...

from sun-times:

Heilman is 2-3 with a 4.55 ERA in a middle-relief role. He has held opponents scoreless in 16 of his last 24 outings dating to July 3.Heilman is 2-3 with a 4.55 ERA in a middle-relief role. He has held opponents scoreless in 16 of his last 24 outings dating to July 3.
---
(so he's given up runs in 8 of his outings since July 3rd. Please go to SF)

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball/cubs/17410...

Martínez is a mexican. That's awesome.

Racist.

That's nationalism, not racism.

Where does rationalization fit in?

Incorrect. Mexican is a race.

So is it racist for me to root for Americans at the Olympics?

Rosenthal say the Cubs haven't been injured and yet they still suck:

http://msn.foxsports.com/video/MLB?vid=3a7b8aa7-04...

It would have been better researched, I suppose had all the struggling players he mentioned not been, you know, injured.

Also off topic. How does ANY pitcher in a big league organization get a second look if he only has 2 pitches? A fastball and slider won't do, yet you hear all the time about some guy with a blazing fastball (Marmol) and he's "working on his" slider (Marmol), or slurve, or whatever?

How does a 'Marmol' survive if any batter has a 50-50 chance of guessing right? I think I know the answer but somebody help me to know why a guy is the closer when he can't find a location with his fastball and his slider moves only 10-12 inches down from up (and ironically, a 40 year old guy named Sheffield was completely fooled by it yesterday).

So is that why Samardzija was sent down? To work on a 3rd pitch?

Finally, wouldn't it be cool if we had a guy like Angel Pagan leading off and batting .295 with his speed?

"WAIT 'TIL NEXT YEAR!"

"How does ANY pitcher in a big league organization get a second look if he only has 2 pitches?"

The vast majority of effective big league relievers feature... two pitches - a fastball and something else. Mariano Rivera throws a fastball and a cut fastball, that's his two pitches. Trevor Hoffman, fastball and changeup. Bruce Sutter, fastball and split finger. Dave Steib was a good to great STARTER for years throwing just two pitches, fastball slider. As long as you have a pitch that you can throw for strikes and the opposing hitter may not hit it, you're in pretty good shape.

"So is that why Samardzija was sent down? To work on a 3rd pitch?"

Samardzija was sent down because he has little control and command. None of his four pitches he throws are going to get as many swinging misses as Marmol's slider.

There is also the length of time a pitcher is used. A relief pitcher can get away with 1 or 2 pitches because they only go one inning. You really need the 3rd or 4th pitch as a starter because your going through the lineup 3 or 4 times.

fwiw: the Daytona Cubs' combined no-hitter yesterday was a 7IP affair (2nd game of a double-header) -- i know its official and all that, just doesn't feel like a genuine no-no

Daytona Cubs beat Tiger starting pitcher prospect Chuck Furbush the day before. Would be nice to swing a deal for Furbush and get him in the Peoria rotation with Bibens-Dirkx before the playoffs. Hendry gets this done, and i'll give him a pass for 2009.

So if Hendry trades for some single A pitcher, you will give him a pass for the big league team's failure this season. WOW! Teflon Jim lives!

no soriano today.

countdown to DL. his knee is toasty as hell. laziness in the OF aside (damn u dusty...we need a real manager to make soriano blah blah blah), some of his recent laxness in chasing down stuff can be tied to his knee.

sori's knee, aram's shoulder...hope 2010 is better.

oh yeah, and the healthy guy with a near .400 ob% is being driven out of town cuz he doesn't want to make the OF bleacher creatures feel like he's part of their social club.

-edit- and as i type that milton hits a game tieing RBI double...2 for 2 on the day. what a bum. he didn't wave to my girlfriend. trade him.

So another Milton 400 AB season means he was healthy? Thats about 2 months of missing AB's. Same goes for last year. Last 2 years 4 months of AB's missing without ever reaching the DL. Sorry but no one can depend on a 400 AB starter for anything, ever.

And his 35 or 36 RBI are good for like 97th place among OFers.

Besides does anyone give a shit that he started hitting when the season is over? It only took him till August to do anything remotely productive lets just forget about April, May, June, and July when he was helping us dig a hole. Hey thanks Milton for showing up its only the end of the August, season started in April. Whoooopeeee. Shittiest RFer in baseball this season.

milton is healthy.

soriano and aram are not.

aram and sori were healthy when the season began...not 100% now...sori's doing pretty bad and aram is living off cortisone.

btw, milton hit well in july, too...and june besides his power...may wasn't too bad.

rough april, though.

.268/.348/.439 .787 OPS in May Yeah...that wasn't too bad..it was average. A 110 OPS+ for that dreck?

Yeah it really sucks when a player misses at bats. That means he was likely walked or hit by a pitch... man if this fucking team could just get some more at bats they'd be great.

p.s. (it's PA's not AB's that are important).
p.p.s Weren't we like in first place in late July or early August?
P.p.p.s. Don't wins in April and May count the same as wins in August and September?

Lol...yeah...and that dropped fly ball Supserstar had Friday? That 2 for 23 streak?

Crunch, I hope your work as his publicist pays well.

i hope you're not driving or operating heavy machinery right now.

Nope, I just think that it's funny that your defense of MB is so....enthusiastic?

Now...if he'd been brought here, put in the #2 slot in the lineup, and had been walking his ass off there all season, and getting driven in regularly by DLee, Aram..even Jake Fox...then I guess I could see it. I just don't know if I'd want the #5 hitter in the lineup looking so hard to take a walk all the time.

MB has had a really good second half. .310/.429/.484 is awfully good. 5HR and 15 RBI in only 156 PA's is okay I suppose. I hope he can do that the rest of his time here. I hope.

Soriano? He should have got the knee MRI months ago. I can't argue that he has been brutal except for April and July, where he was superb at the plate. He is awful in the field, and you can visibly see him gimping around the bases. I'd love to see Jake Fox in there the rest of the season.

The difference is, you don't see Soriano bitching about the umps/showing them up at the plate, bitching about the fans, bitching about the media. He came out and said "I stink."

Your smartass comment notwithstanding, I agree with you that Soriano hass been a bigger issue this season than Bradley. How ever, let's not sugarcoat Bradley's season as a success just yet. Maybe he could be the MVP of OBP?

I could care less who's bitching to the press and the bitching to the umps milton is doing isn't keeping him from getting his walks or calls at the plate...besides it's not even meltdown ump bitching.

the media means NOTHING to me...the bleacher creatures, NOTHING...the baseball social experience, NOTHING.

also, you've missed a few dozen times of milton taking responsibility for his actions as well as avoiding situations that invite a fight...most specifically with the guy who's job is to keep that stuff from happening, his manager.

soriano not bitching isn't making him any better of a player. soriano being nice to the OF bleachers isn't making him a better player.

A few dozen times Milton has taken responsiblity. Ok...great.

You're right, I'm wrong. Thanks.

I am moving on.

Wow.

A statement game from the Cubs today.

Fill in the blank...

Today, the Cubs said, ______________________________________

Have at it, boys.

Shit.

I'm sorry.

Jake Fox made a statement today.

Serves me right for not looking at the box score before posting.

Mitre, Yanks combine on 1-hitter vs. White Sox

Btw, can you guys refresh me on the Mitre movement off the club?

To Florida I remember. Derek Lee?

I could have googled it in this time but I'd rather watch people talk.

Juan Pierre

It was Pierre for Mitre, Nolasco, and Pinto.

And thanks for reminding us of that absolutely disaster of a trade.

1 hitter belonged to Mitre and Chad Gaudin

postgame Lou said Soriano's MRI didn't show anything bad and expects them to give him a cortisone shot...I'll get better detail if I can

also on radio they said Jeff Baker's little finger xray was negative for a fracture

What was the hitter's name and are they going to sell him during the off-season?

muskat article and a video interview from Soriano:

An MRI of Alfonso Soriano's left knee on Saturday revealed inflammation, and the outfielder will likely get a cortisone shot and be sidelined a few days.

http://cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20090829&...
---
Inflammation can be localized to a specific part of the knee (i.e. patellar tendon) or it can be generalized as in increased joint fluid (an effusion) so it's a very limited amount of information we're getting again. Still, if he had a meniscus or ACL tear (aka something structural) they probably would not have omitted those as specific findings.

It could be arthritic, though?

t could be arthritic, though?
---
could be...a common source of inflammation on an mri. the term for early arthritic changes is chondromalacia (essentially translates to soft or worn articular cartilage) and mri's can see that if it's severe but if it's fairly mild it's a tougher call. It is something easily identified arthroscopically

Recent comments

Subscribe to Recent comments
The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 2 hours 17 min ago view
  • With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.

    johann 5 hours 15 min ago view
  • it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.

    crunch 5 hours 27 min ago view
  • It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.

    Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.

    The E-Man 5 hours 36 min ago view
  • That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.

    I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.

    Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...

    These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.

    No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.

    The E-Man 5 hours 41 min ago view
  • a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...

    it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...

    crunch 6 hours 18 sec ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 6 hours 36 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 6 hours 54 min ago view
  • Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.

    The E-Man 6 hours 55 min ago view
  • soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.

    he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.

    crunch 7 hours 13 min ago view
  • j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.

    crunch 7 hours 21 min ago view
  • so is him actually getting 2 hits in a game (2 doubles!)...first time he's even been on base 2 times in a game since 9 games ago on his 3/4, 1bb day.

    im ready for him to at least look like a 2-slot hitter since he's gonna be slotted there no matter what he does.

    crunch 8 hours 16 min ago view
  • That Heyward move to avoid Bryant's ball hit at him was a thing of beauty too.

    johann 8 hours 34 min ago view
  • 9 pitches in and this game already rules.

    HR, double...bryant's turn (who came out to a Kris Kross song for some horrible, horrible reason).

    ...2 run inning...zoobrest hitting streak at 14.

    crunch 8 hours 39 min ago view
  • First time I saw Herrera was yesterday. He took like 100 pitches, fouled off a ton off Lester.

    Very nice young player and perfect leadoff guy.

    The E-Man 9 hours 48 min ago view
  • Obviously not Phil. But he mentioned this on Wednesday.

    "Dominican Summer League (DSL) Opening Day is Saturday June 4th, so probably about 8-10 pitchers and position players presently at EXST in Mesa will be sent to the Cubs Dominican Academy (probably sometime this week) and be assigned to either DSL Cubs #1 or DSL Cubs #2."

    In the comments here: http://www.thecubreporter.com/05242016/cub-power-d...

    QuietMan 10 hours 27 min ago view