Cubs Pitchers Smoke Out the Tribe

Three Cub pitchers combined to throw a four-hit shutout with 14 strikeouts, as the AZL Cubs celebrated the 4th of July with a 2-0 blanking of the AZL Indians in Arizona League action at Dwight Patterson Field at HoHoKam Park in Mesa tonight.  



box score


20-year old Dominican RHP Luis Liria got the start for the Cubs and threw four shutout innings (60 pitches - 37 strikes), allowing three singles and a walk, while striking out six. In three GS (12.2 IP) so far for the AZL Cubs, Liria has 17 strikeouts, good for 5th in the league. Liria pitched well in Extended Spring Training, too, although he did suffer from occasional control lapses.


6'5 Australian LHP Cody Hams followed Liria to the mound, and retired all nine men he faced. The 20-year old Hams missed most of Extended Spring Training with a sore back after trying to perfect a new sidearm delivery, but he has pitched very well in three AZL relief outings so far (1.42 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP in 6.1 IP) after returning to a more conventional arm-slot. Hams is the former star cricket player (bowler) who paid his own way to the MLB Australian Academy in 2007 after a friend told him he should try playing baseball. And the second baseball game he ever saw in his life was one where he was the pitcher!  The Cubs signed him to a reported $150K bonus in 2008 (the highest signing bonus any Australian signed by he Cubs has received so far), and he has spent the past three seasons at Fitch Park learning the finer points of pitching. He is (or was) the definition of a "blank slate."


RHP Alvido Jimenez pitched the final two innings and notched the save, allowing a hit and a walk while strikng out five. (He struck out the side in the 9th after surrendering a lead-off triple). Jimenez was used as both a starter and a reliever as a 17-year old last season in the DSL, but he has been working exclusively out of the bullpen in both Extended Spring Training and AZL games this year.   


While Cubs pitchers were mowing-down the Tribe, Cubs hitters provided just enough offense to nail-down the victory.


The Cubs scored their first run in the bottom of the 2nd when Cody Shields reached base on a one-out bunt single down the 3rd base line, and then after Xavier Batista hit into a FC, Albert Hernandez directed a picture-perfect hit & run single right where the 2nd baseman had been a second earlier, and X. Batista (who never stopped running) came all the way around to score from 1st base. 


The Cubs picked-up an insurance run in the 6th, as Ryan Cuneo (2010 20th round draft pick out of the U. of Delaware) continued his torrid hitting by ripping a lead-off double off the RF fence, before scoring on a two-out line single to left by Cody Shields. Cuneo is hitting 356/408/600 in 11 AZL games, and is 5th in the league in SLG %. If he keeps hitting the ball the way he has so far, it shouldn't be too long before Cuneo gets his Letter of Transit out of Casablanca. 

Comments

at least someone got to see some good cubs baseball.

t shouldn't be too long before Cuneo gets his Letter of Transit out of Casablanca.
---
Arizona Rick: "Louis, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship. "

Side Note:

An article in on floridatoday.com (found by reader of BleedCubbieBlue) has Dustin Geiger reporting to Mesa to play for AZL Cubs this weekend. It says he signed recently instead of playing for UCF. We must have ponied up the cash a bit to get the...

"Florida Today's 2010 High School Player of the Year... Played 3B in HS and wants to stay there, but is projected as a RF in pro ball... Has plus-arm, also was part-time closer... Hit .534 with 7 HR and 33 RBI his senior year at MIHS... Has summer job at Outback Steakhouse, so he could be used as a translator for Cubs Australian players at Fitch Park... Signed NLI with University of Central Florida and has strong commitment to attend UCF"

AZ Phil, let us know if he reports and if so what he looks like.

Thanks

Removed my comment. I'll replace it with...

Another thanks to AZ Phil for all his efforts.

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  • Hendricks 6 shutout innings, ends night with an ERA of 1.99

    Cubster 6 min 23 sec ago view
  • in case it hasn't been mentioned yet, Twins are hiring Indians 32-year old Derick Falvey from the Cleveland Native Americans organization.

    Suppose McLeod could still be asked by another organization but likely staying put.

    Rob G. 1 hour 4 min ago view
  • Well put, both your remark, and Crunch's.

    Transmission 1 hour 6 min ago view
  • I saw the Gordon HR. It was like a funeral where the mourners were made to play baseball. So sad...

    CTSteve 1 hour 10 min ago view
  • i wanted to watch more of it, but it started to feel like i was going beyond witnessing a human experience that isn't often seen into an uncomfortable voyeurism. these guys are in pain.

    crunch 1 hour 29 min ago view
  • wow I am glad I missed the start of the MIA game.  I would have been sobbing.

    Transmission 1 hour 38 min ago view
  • Baez!!

    Brick 1 hour 42 min ago view
  • baez grand slam!

    crunch 1 hour 42 min ago view
  • lulz, MIA with a 5-0 lead after 2 innings.

    crunch 2 hours 10 min ago view
  • d.gordon leads off MIA inning with a HR...came up to bat wearing j.fernandez's helmet.

    he barely made it back into the dugout after crying his way around the bases.

    i can't watch this game anymore. it's too much...too real.

    crunch 2 hours 32 min ago view
  • FLA really doesn't look like they're mentally/physically prepared for this game. never seen anything like this...it's not just a few people in the dugout still feeling it large, it's pretty much everyone.

    i doubt it will lead to some kinda error-filled little league quality game, but everyone looks drained and still draining.

    ...and onto the cubs game. go #100.

    crunch 2 hours 39 min ago view
  • The Marlins organization is obviously affected deeply by this. I feel for the people there. And I understand circumstances have changed.

    But retiring his number. Wow. Literally a week ago the rumor mill was fast and furious about how Fernandez was going to be traded this winter, with the front office in response doing almost nothing to deny it. And to turn around and retire his number, just like that, when they obviously felt the organization would have been better long-term without him, just reeks of insincerity.

    John Beasley 3 hours 16 min ago view
  • jose fernandez's number is going to be retired by FLA.

    there's custom jerseys on their way to tonight's game (and hopefully will make it on time). all the marlins are going to wear #16 tonight.

    this still sucks.

    crunch 4 hours 47 min ago view
  • probably saturday depending on what they do with hammel (assuming friday for ham).

    crunch 9 hours 44 min ago view
  • Lester is going to get one more start, right? It sure would be nice to see him get a shot at 20 wins.

    Charlie 10 hours 15 min ago view
  • Nicely done! I think in my 10-14 games I went .500 or a little over. Strangely, I went to the Cards games they mostly lost (incl Saturday) and the one SF game they lost, plus a couple Brewers games they lost, too. I should have gone to just Reds games. But still - saw mostly very good baseball on the North Side this year. Regardless of what happens come October - the Cubs are positioned for some good times in the next 3-5 years.

    The E-Man 11 hours 40 min ago view