Cubs Pitchers Almost But Not Too Wild About Diablo Park
Yaniel Cabezas drove-in four runs and five pitchers combined to throw a three-hitter, as a split squad of EXST Cubs thumped the EXST Angels 13-5 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Diablo Park in Tempe this morning.
Meanwhile, the other squad of EXST Cubs was defeated by the EXST Rockies 13-8 at Fitch Park Field #3, despite a three-run HR by Blair Springfield.
Although I am able to watch and score two games played simultaneously on adjacent fields, I have not yet mastered the art of being at two games played simultaneously ten miles apart (although I am working on it), so I will only be able to provide the recap from the Cubs-Angels game played at Diablo Park…
Bats were silent and the team looked dead, as the Cubs trailed 3-0 with two outs and nobody on base in the top of the 5th. But then Kyung-Min Na blooped a single over the second-baseman’s head, Dustin Geiger reached base on an infield single (dribbler down the 3rd base line), and Yaniel Cabezas hammered an opposite-field RBI single through the 3.5 hole and into RF, scoring Na with the Cubs first run. Hector Suarez followed with a two-run triple off the left-centerfield fence to score Geiger and Cabezas, and Gregori Gonzalez finished the inning’s scoring, clubbing an RBI double down the LF line to plate Suarez, as the Cubs took a 4-3 lead.
Still up 4-3, the Cubs scored five times in the top of the 7th as Dustin Harrington lined a lead-off single to LF, Kyung-Min Na was hit by a pitch, and Dustin Geiger lined an RBI single to RF to score Harrington, and send the speedy Na to 3rd. Yaniel Cabezas tripled over the centerfielder’s head to knock-in Na and Geiger, and then Cabezas scored on a Hector Suarez F-8 SF. But the Cubs were not finished. Gregori Gonzalez singled, advanced to 2nd base on a ground out, and scored on a two-out two-base throwing error by the Angels SS, giving the Cubs a 9-3 lead.
Now up 9-5, the Cubs put the game away with three more runs in the top of the 8th. Reggie Golden, Dustin Harrington, and Kyung-Min Na all singled to load the bases with no outs, and then Golden scored (and the other two runners moved up a base) on a wild pitch. Dustin Geiger bounced a single to left to score Harrington and move Na to 3rd, and then Na scored on a FC.
The Cubs scored one last run in the top of the 9th, once again loading the bases to start the inning (consecutive singles by Jose Valdez, Wes Darvill, and Jesus Morelli). After Reggie Golden struck out (swinging and grunting), Dustin Harrington lofted a sacrifice fly to CF to score Valdez with the Cubs 13th and final run.
While the Cubs pitchers allowed only three hits, they did walk nine (three scored), hit a batter, and threw two wild pitches. Also, the Angels stole seven bases (no CS), and the Cubs infield defense was not exactly air-tight, committing three throwing errors (two by 2B Gregori Gonzalez and one by SS Wes Darvill) that led to two unearned runs scoring. (Although he made a costly throwing error that resulted in an unearned run scoring, shortstop Darvill also made two outstanding stops & throws that saved at least two runs).
Here is today’s abridged box score from the game played at Diablo Park (Cubs players only):
1. Jose Valdez, CF-DH: 1-5 (4-3, F-9, 6-3, 3-U, 1B, R)
2. Wes Darvill, SS: 1-5 (6-3, 4-3, K, E-6, 1B)
3. Jesus Morelli, LF: 1-5 (K, F-9, F-9, F-8, 1B)
4. Reggie Golden, RF: 1-4 (BB, K, 4-3, 1B, K, R)
5. Dustin Harrington, 3B: 2-4 (F-9, K, 1B, 1B, F-8 SF, 2 R, RBI, SB)
6. Kyung-Min Na, DH-CF: 2-4 (6-3 DP, 1B, HBP, 1B, 4-3, 3 R)
7. Dustin Geiger, 1B: 3-4 (F-9, 1B, 1B, 1B, 2 R, 2 RBI)
8. Yaniel Cabezas, C-DH: 2-4 (F-7, 1B, 3B, 4-6 FC, 2 R, 4 RBI)
9. Hector Suarez, DH-C: 2-3 (1B, 3B, F-8 SF, K, R, 3 RBI)
10. Gregori Gonzalez, 2B: 2-4 (6-4 FC, 2B, 1B, 6-4 FC, R, RBI)
1. Joe Zeller: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 2 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 45 pitches (22 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
2. Hunter Ackerman: 2.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), 3 BB, 3 K, 48 pitches (25 strikes), 4/1 GO/FO
3. Rafael Diplan: 1.2 IP, 0 H, 2 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 25 pitches (12 strikes), 4/0 GO/FO
4. Willengton Cruz: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K, 1 WP, 29 pitches (17 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
5. Starling Peralta: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 16 pitches (9 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
1. 2B Gregori Gonzalez E4 – throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely – eventually scored unearned run
2. 2B Gregori Gonzalez E4 – throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely
3. SS Wes Darvill E6 – throwing error attempting 6-4 FC allowed runner to reach 2nd base safely and unearned run to score
1. Yaniel Cabezas: 0-5 CS
2. Hector Suarez: 0-2 CS
ATTENDANCE: 1 (that would be me)
WEATHER: Sunny & breezy with temperatures in the 80’s
Strangest win of the year, and one of the sweetest. Twice I thought it was easily in the bag, then after the first 2 hitters in the 9th I thought all was lost. Big game for Grimm, Strop & Rondon. But, man, those Cards can hit for power.
Very satisfying, gut-check win today. The beers on the trip back to Chicago are going to taste fantastic.
It's still very early but this game felt very important to me and probably knocked 2 years off my life. Seemed like every inning was big.
Yes then they moved him two spot then not so much, back batting 7th
This is the exact game that the Cubs would have lost in years past to the Cardinals.
Arrieta starting. Leads of 6-1 and 9-4. You don't expect to have such a sense of relief when they win.
At least the end result was worth the wait.
I guess he's better than what they've had. He started out like the Babe there.
Fair enough, but Castro isn't really very good.
I can just hear Pat Hughes chortling "typical Cubs-Cards game..."
As long as Maddon uses him against RH he is good. Against LH - not so much.
His recent HR's obviously have not been great pitches.
So, let's just say my personal confidence in the guy is not there yet.
not that I'm agreeing with E-Man in anyway here, but Warren's FIP and peripherals are not really good (5.20 FIP/5.19 BB/9/.128 BABIP), although his actual results are a lot better. Well until today...
Trade was also to make room for Zobrist and it'll be a few years before we can really judge it.
Eventually, the Maddon "play everyone everywhere" thing was going to create a problem.
This ump blows.
So much for pace-of-game.