It's May Day in Maryvale
Brandon May had a double and two singles, three RBI, and a run scored, and Arismendy Alcantara cranked a solo home run, leading the EXST Cubs to a 9-2 drubbing of the EXST Brewers in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Maryvale Park Field #7 in Phoenix this morning.
While Brandon May had a big day at the plate, he had a bad day in the field, committing errors on consecutive at bats resulting in an unearned run scoring against John Mincone in the 5th. (Mincone surrendered just a bunt single in three innings of work). The two errors were May’s first of the year, ending his consecutive-games errorless streak at 17. May has been (and remains) the EXST Cubs most-reliable and versatile infield defender, capable of playing 1B, 2B, and 3B equally well (he also has played LF).
Bobby Wagner has been donning the “tools of ignorance” in recent days, warming up pitchers in the bullpen when he isn’t playing 1B or 3B. (In fact his slot in today’s lineup was skipped in the 9th inning because he was busy warming up Carlos Rojas in the bullpen). This could be a pre-cursor to Wagner making the full conversion to catcher, since he has yet to find a permanent defensive position (he played 3B in college, mostly LF last year at Boise, and mostly 1B so far this year at Minor League Camp and Extended Spring Training). Wagner is presently tied with Arismendy Alcantara for the EXST Cubs team lead in home runs (both have two).
Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1. Vismeldy Bieneme, 2B: 1-4 (F-7, BB, 1B, 4-3, 6-3, RBI)
2. Alvaro Ramirez, CF: 3-5 (1B, 1B, 1B, K, E-4, R)
3a. Jesus Morelli, RF: 1-2 (1B, HBP, HBP, 4-3, 2 R, SB)
3b. Carlos Romero, 1B: 0-1 (K)
4. Brandon May, 3B: 3-5 (2B, K, 4-6-3 GIDP, 1B, 1B, R , 3 RBI)
5. Runey Davis, LF-RF: 1-3 (F-8 SF, BB, 1B, F-9, F-7, R, RBI)
6a. Bobby Wagner, DH #1: 1-3 (F-8, P-2, 3B, RBI)
6b. SLOT WAS SKIPPED IN THE TOP OF THE 9th
7. Luis Flores, C: 0-3 (P-2, F-9, BB, F-9)
8. Albert Hernandez, 1B-LF: 0-4 (K+WP, 6-3, F-9, 6-3, R, SB)
9. Wes Darvill, SS: 1-4 (1B, K, 4-3, K, RBI)
10. Arismendy Alcantara, DH #2: 1-4 (HR, E-3, K, E-1, 3 R, RBI)
1. Marcus Hatley – 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GO/FO, 16 pitches (10 strikes)
2. Luis Liria – 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 4/2 GO/FO, 46 pitches (32 strikes)
3. John Mincone - 3.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 2/4 GO/FO, 30 pitches (20 strikes)
4. Jose Rosario - 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 10 pitches (8 strikes)
5. Carlos Rojas - 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 1/2 GO/FO, 8 pitches (6 strikes)
1. 3B Brandon May E-5 (overthrow at 1st base on bunt single allowed batter to reach 3rd base – eventually scored unearned run)
2. 3B Brandon May E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely – did not score)
Luis Flores: 1-1 CS
BASERUNNING MISADVDENTURES: Wes Darvill was thrown out 9-6 trying to stretch a single into a double, and Vismeldy Bieneme was thrown out 8-5 trying to advance from 1st to 3rd on a two-out single to CF.
WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 80’s
I love winning! It's, like, better than losing?
You lollygag the ball around the infield. You lollygag your way down to first. You lollygag in and out of the dugout. You know what that makes you? Larry!
Its too bad Warren didnt get to pitch. He would have saved us.
Whoa -- that Contreras play in the 8th looked too much like a "Schwarber" -- nearly crashed into the wall going full speed, with Heyward doing the same.
New rule: if you are a catcher playing LF, and find yourself sprinting after a fly ball in the gap -- stop, let the CF go after it and get ready to play it off the wall.
Cubs have no spark and no life. Pretty boring to watch these days.
I thought trips to Miami were supposed to be fun. This one sucked.
The bottom half of the bullpen now turns close games into blowout losses. Not good.
Once Fowler went to the DL, the team went into the tank. Wonder if he'll get any love this offseason? Probably not.
6IP, 2ER. The last one scored because of another botched Zobrist DP turn.
And now, a bad throw by KB. Sloppy.
What is it with Hammel always starting well and sucking after a couple months?
Ahhh...sad. Lke a few of you here, I saw him play during the '69-'71 seasons. He was the "hot Zobrist" for the club in August/September of '69 while everyone else was fizzling out...
I predict: "They will play hard and if they give the same effort every day, they'll win a lot of games."
OK, boys -- find a way to win today.
There's some BA is missing too, here's all signing bonus BA doesn't have some:
-6 Hockin $241,000 (slot price), 7 Cruz $75,000 (saved $110,00), 8 Ridlings $120,000 (saved $53,800), 9 Robinson $30,000 (saved $132,300), so far the Cubs have saved an extra $297,100
Zobrist (2B), Hayward (CF), Bryant (3B), Rizzo, Contreras (LF), Montero, Russell, Coghlan (RF), Hammel
Also -- despite losing 6 of their last 10, the Cubs picked up a game on both STL and PIT during that period. Weird, given that they swept PIT and were swept by STL.
Also, I'd like to know if there are numbers to back up my suspicion that there are a lot more fast starts than late June romps. This seems like a time where everybody not named Willson Contreras is looking a little tired and/or banged up a bit.
For once, the Cubs got off to a fast start. Seems like I've been waiting for that for 50 years.Everybody is really gunning for this team, too. It's their playoffs.