Ha Gives Cubs Reason to Smile
Michael Choice and A. J. Kirby-Jones crushed back-to-back home runs to cap a five-run 5th, leading the A’s Split Squad #1 to a 9-3 victory over the Cubs in AZ Instructional League action at Papago Park Baseball Complex Field #2 in Phoenix this afternoon.
Although there wasn’t much to celebrate on the Cubs side of the field, CF Jae-Hoon Ha had a nice day, rapping an RBI single in the top of the 1st before stealing 2nd base and 3rd base, and then scoring on a WP on the steal of 3rd as he came all the way around to score from 2nd without slowing-down, sliding home safely in a bang-bang play at the plate. Ha later made a spectacular diving catch on a hump-backed liner in short center.
17-year old LHP Brian Smith (Cubs 2010 40th round draft pick out of Pickering, Ontario) made his pro debut today, and looked very nervous, allowing two runs in one inning of work, while having a lot of difficulty locating the strike zone (23 pitches, only nine strikes). He also hit a batter, threw a wild pitch, and committed a balk. Smith pitched for the Canadian Junior National Team in 2010.
18-year old RHP Ryan Hartman (Cubs 2010 16th round draft pick out of Mt. Zion HS - Mt. Zion, IL) had an especially poor outing today, allowing five runs on six hits (three singles, a triple, and back-to-back home runs) plus a walk and a wild pitch in his two innings of work. Although he was selected in the 16th round in last June's draft, Hartman received a $150,000 bonus (equivalent to "5th round money") when he signed with the Cubs. He appeared in eight games for the AZL Cubs in 2010, allowing 10 hits in 14.1 IP, with a 5/15 BB/K, 3.77 ERA, and a 1.05 WHIP. He was considered one of the top high school pitching prospects in Illinois coming into the 2010 season, and his curve ball was rated by scouts as the best among Illinois HS hurlers.
Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1a. Marco Hernandez, SS: 2-3 (1B+E5, E6, 1B+E1, R)
1b. Wes Darvill, SS: 0-1 (P-3)
2a. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 0-3 (4-3, 6-4-3 GIDP, E6)
2b. Pin-Chieh Chen, 2B: 0-1 (K)
3. Jae-Hoon Ha, CF: 1-4 (1B, F-7, F-7, L-6, RBI, R, 2 SB)
4. Ryan Cuneo, 1B: 1-3 (K, HBP, 3B, F-7)
5. Xavier Batista, RF: 0-2 (K, E1, HBP, BB, CS)
6. Engel Santana, DH-C: 0-3 (6-3, BB, 4-3 GIDP, F-9)
7a. Willson Contreras, 3B: 0-2 (F-7, L-3 DP)
7b. Dustin Geiger, 3B: 0-0 (BB)
7c. Max Kwan, PH: 0-1 (4-3)
8. Delbis Arcila, LF-DH: 0-2 (HBP, 6-3, K)
9. Sergio Burruel, C-DH: 0-2 (BB, K, 4-3)
10. Oliver Zapata, DH-LF: 2-2 (BB, 1B, 2B, R)
1. Dustin Fitzgerald: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 GIDP, 31 pitches (23 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
2. Brian Smith: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 1 HBP, 1 BALK, 23 pitches (9 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
3. Ryan Hartman: 2.0 IP, 6 H, 5 R (5 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 2 HR, 1 GIDP, 45 pitches (24 strikes), 4/1 GO/FO
4. Luis Liria: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 30 pitches (18 strikes), 5/1 GO/FO
5. Jeff Lorick: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 14 pitches (10 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
6. Cam Greathouse: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 BALK, 1 GIDP, 13 pitches (9 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
1. C Sergio Burruel E-2 (overthrow on stolen base attempt at 2nd base allowed runner to advance to 3rd base)
2. 3B Dustin Geiger: E-5 (dropped tag on run-down play allowed runner to reach 3rd base – eventually scored unearned run)
Sergio Burruel: 0-2 CS, 1 E (see above)
Engel Santana: 0-1 CS, 1 PB
ATTENDANCE: 17 (mostly scouts)
WEATHER: Hot and sunny, with temperatures in the 90’s
2010 CUBS INSTRUCTIONAL LEAGUE ROSTER:
ACTIVE LIST (47):
* bats or throws left
# bats both
* Hunter Ackerman
* Brent Ebinger
* Cam Greathouse
* Casey Harman
* Jeff Lorick
* Brian Smith
Alvaro Sosa (ex-C)
Charles Thomas (ex-3B)
* Sergio Burruel
# Micah Gibbs
# Engel Santana
* Justin Bour
* Ryan Cuneo
* Pin-Chieh Chen
* Wes Darvill
* Marco Hernandez
* Hak-Ju Lee
D. J. Lemahieu
* Logan Watkins
* Delbis Arcila
Chris Huseby (ex-P)
* Kyung-Min Na
# Oliver Zapata
Maybe it's just Werth & Ross I'm noticing. Weird.
CRAIG: Jose Albertos is not chunky like Fernando. He's built more like Dylan Cease. Exact same body type. And his delivery is free & easy. He's definitely not a "max effort" guy.
Hendricks after 50 MLB starts: 17-11, 3.45 ERA, 1.12 WHIP. Not bad for a #5 starter. He may be a 6-inning max guy, but, if he can keep those stats up, I will gladly take it.
Speaking of WHIP -- last year, he was tied for 11th in the NL. Tied with Hammel.
Last year's NL rank in WHIP: Arrietta 2nd, Lester 9th, Haren 10th, Hammel T11th, Hendricks T11th. Wow.
I went to a Nats game in DC two years ago while looking at colleges with my son -- it's a fun park, worth a visit if you are in the area.
I also saw the "slowness" thing -- particularly Werth, who would mosey out of RF about 5 seconds before the inning started.
It's Dusty's fault. It'll be the end of them.
Speaking of how teams "look", my take on the Nats- It's really weird, but the pace of the entire team seems slow. Slow walking to the plate, slow on the mound, even on some routine groundouts, it looked as if there wasn't a ton of hustle. Don't get me wrong, when the ball is hit to their outfielders, they get after the ball, I'm really referring to non-critical action- they mosey around. It's kind of odd. Maybe that "calm power" is part of the Nats ethos, idk.
My favorite moment of Hendricks' performance last night was the last strikeout he rung up- the cajones it took to throw a high, 86MPH fastball to Zimmerman on a 0-2 count. And he swung the bat like it was a 96MPH heater. I literally laughed out loud.
In listening to Maddon's post-game, he is interested in how these other teams "look" to him. He is assessing for today...and tomorrow. I love this guy.
One observation from last night: Joe Ross is incredibly slow. 20-30 seconds between pitches at times. Hendrix had a nice, peppy rhythm which is great to see.
I know there are plenty of purists here which I applaud, but the game just will not sustain itself unless change of pace rules come into play. Pitch clock, improve the shit-ass reviews, mound visits (there is a clock for this), batter time outs, etc.
Thanks, Phil. Albertos at 17, and having gotten a good signing bonus ($1.5, even though as Mexican prospect I think his team gets half of that?), throwing in the 90's and showing some command of a curveball sounds pretty interesting, even if that control is only for a dozen-pitch sample.
What kind of a frame does he have? Is he on the stocky and short-ish side (I'm recalling Fernando Valenzuela!), or somewhat taller? A lot of 17-year olds have projection, "when he fills out" projection. Would that apply at all for Albertos?
I definitely hang around here looking to reply to your comments as noticed by my nearly year long absence.
there's a fine line between posting something relevant, useful or at least humorous versus posting something irrelevant, useless or unfunny...actually it's rather quite a thick line and easy to see for most people not named crunch.
I certainly am digging the RISP machine Zobrist version.
Cubs are taking advantage of bad D by their opponents -- did it a few times in PIT and the Nats botched 2-out rundown leads to 3 Cub runs in the 8th. Which were nice to have.
I hope Kyle had fun at the dance party -- he was terrific.
i hope he's getting more consideration for the 2-slot vs lefties, too.