McNutt Versus Bradley - Instructs Version of Mothra Versus Godzilla
In his first start since throwing three perfect innings with eight strikeouts against the Cubs at Fitch Park on Monday, RHP Archie Bradley (7th overall pick in 1st round of 2011 draft) threw three innings of no run/no hit ball, as the Diamondbacks defeated the Cubs 3-1 in AZ Instructional League action this afternoon at Whirlwind Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort east of Scottsdale.
Bradley wasn’t as sharp as last time, walking two and hitting a batter while throwing barely 50% strikes (46 pitches – 24 strikes), and recording just two strikeouts. But the Cubs once again could do nothing with the 19-year old from Broken Arrow, OK.
Cubs top pitching prospect RHP Trey McNutt got the start for the Cubs, as he prepares for the start of the Arizona Fall League (AFL) next Tuesday where he will be a rotation starter for the Mesa Solar Sox. (Each MLB club designates one pitcher assigned to its AFL affiliate as a "starting pitcher," and the other three pitchers sent to the AFL work out of the AFL team's bullpen).
McNutt threw two innings, and he really struggled to get through a 26-pitch 1st inning, allowing two runs on two hits and a walk. But he retired the last five men he faced, pumping 12 consecutive strikes in the process, and he induced mostly ground balls (five ground outs and a ground ball RBI single) throughout the two innings. In fact the only ball hit into the air was a broken bat opposite-field bloop single by the Diamondbacks lead-off hitter in the bottom of the 1st.
21-year old RHP Scott Weismann (Cubs 2011 46th round draft pick out of Clemson) has been added to the Cubs Instructs roster, and he made his pro debut in today’s game, throwing a perfect nine-pitch 1-2-3 inning (K-swinging, P-2, F-8). Weismann was in the CWS Clemson Tiger starting rotation with LHP Casey Harman (Cubs 2010 29th round pick) in 2010, but was moved to the bullpen this past season where he excelled as the team’s closer.
The defensive gem of the day was turned-in by Cubs 2011 #1 draft pick SS Javier Baez, who made a run-saving diving stop behind 2nd base with two outs and runners at 1st and 2nd in the bottom of the 6th, got back up on his feet, and gunned-down (easily) the D’backs runner trying to sneak home, with a laser throw to catcher Yaniel Cabezas.
Baez also scored the only Cub run of the day, lining a double into left-center to lead-off the top of the 6th, and eventually scoring on a Dan Vogelbach one-out 6-3 GO.
Here is the abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1. Shawon Dunston, Jr, CF: 0-4 (3-U, 3-6 FC, K, P-2)
2. Javier Baez, SS: 1-4 (6-3, P-3, 2B, K, R)
3. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 0-4 (K, 3-U, F-8, 4-3)
4. Dan Vogelbach, 1B: 0-3 (4-3, P-4, 6-3, RBI)
5. Taiwan Easterling, LF: 1-2 (HBP, 2B, P-5, CS)
6. Micah Gibbs, DH #1: 0-1 (BB, BB, F-7)
7. Neftali Rosario, DH #2: 0-3 (F-8, 5-4 FC, K)
8. Carlos Penalver, 2B: 0-3 (K, E-5, 4-3, SB)
9a. Alberto Mineo, C: 0-1 (BB, L-5)
9b. Yaniel Cabezas, C: 0-1 (L-6)
10a. Jeffrey Baez, RF: 1-3 (E-5, 3-U, 1B, CS)
10b. Garrett Schlecht, RF: NO AB
11a. SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TWO TIMES THRU BATTING ORDER
11b. Danny Lockhart, DH #3: 0-1 (6-3)
1. Trey McNutt: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 34 pitches (24 strikes), 5/0 GO/FO
2. Scott Weismann: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 9 pitches (6 strikes), 0/2 GO/FO
3. Alexander Santana: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 9 pitches (8 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
4. Tayler Scott: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 24 pitches (16 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
5. Michael Jensen: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 GIDP, 19 pitches (11 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
6. Kyler Burke: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 15 pitches (6 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
7. Tony Zych: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP, 22 pitches (10 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
1. 1B Dan Vogelbach - E-3 (throwing error allowed batter-runner to take 2nd base)
2. 2B Carlos Penalver - E-4 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely & unearned run to score)
LF Taiwan Easterling - runner thrown out 7-6-2 trying to score from 1st base on a double into LF corner
ATTENDANCE: 20 (mostly scouts, plus cubs.com beat writer Carrie Muskat)
WEATHER: Sunny, hot (100+), and VERY breezy
Not sure I agree with this logic. The Cubs are one of the best teams in baseball, they have spent heavily on the team over the past couple of seasons, have more hitting prospects than they have places for them to play (and more on the way), a clear weakness in the bullpen, and have a 1.5 year window with Arrieta (to say nothing of the likely declines of Lester and Lackey).
Unless you think (maybe even if you do think) Schwarber is the next coming of Babe Ruth, I would certainly consider trading him if it brought back a couple of the best relief pitchers in baseball.
Miggy was going to sit anyway with Lester starting.
In related news, do any of the Cubs pitchers want to throw to Contreras?
Only Russell and Miggy failed to reach base yesterday. Both sit today.
Trading Schwarber actually makes a lot of sense because his actual position is currently being taken by Anthony Rizzo, unless they vote in the DH this offseason.
Trading him for a reliever is never going to happen though. I don't think you can trade Schwarber unless you get a CF'er for a few years (presume Fowler finds his multi-year deal next offseson) or a couple of high end young starters...or an established starter...a good one like Chris Sale.
I don't see what the Yanks have that the Cubs need.
peter gammons on MLB network pushing the yanks/schwarber angle...says insiders from the yanks say brian cashman highly covets him.
unless that conversation starts with a.miller (2/18m left on contract) i dunno how you even start that conversation given the "not trash, but no stars" state of the yanks minor league system.
they got corner OF'r aaron judge, C gary sanchez, RHP james kaprielian's questionable elbow, RHP domingo acevedo...all interesting, none expected to impact the game like schwarber's power potential.
Zo, Heyward, KB, Riz, Contreras (LF), Baez (SS), Szczur (CF), Ross, Lester
damn. low sample size blah blah whatever, but that slash got sneaky good. 10 hits, 4 walks, 2hr, 1 double through 39 PA...nice
Buddy Ryan takes his place alongside George Allen as the great Bear head coaches who never were.
Well, at least he can still hit: Jake slashing .294/.368/.868. Forget hitting 8th -- he should hit 6th.
Curious to see today's lineup vs. a LHP: Ross needs to catch Lester, Joe likes Javy at 3B when Lester pitches. Heyward with back-to-back good games at the plate, and is actually hitting a little better against LHP (.247/.341) than RHP (.232/.321), although neither is much to write home about. But, tomorrow is an early day game, so some regulars will probably sit either today or tomorrow.
Maybe Willson in LF, KB in RF and Almora in CF? If so, Albert Jr., assume every ball is yours.
"Pitching prospects not looking so hot"
That reminds me that Lucas Giolito will start for the Nats tonight.
Well, there you go. Federowicz is one of the best at balls in the dirt.
Reds pitching meeting tomorrow:
"Hey coach...maybe we should walk Bryant?"
"No...keep challenging him with fastballs! What kind of man are you?! The Cubs walked Harper, and look what happened there! They got teased for it, by one of the Nat players! Is that what you want?"
How can I get that feature? I think it woudl be a win-win for all involved.
Ian Happ is hitting.733 after 5 games at Tennessee. He went into tonight's game hitting .667 -- and went 3-for-3 to raise his average.
2-for-3, including a bomb, for LaStella at Iowa. Pierce Johnson very bad -- 2IP, 5ER. Pitching prospects not looking so hot -- Underwood has been awful.
Did Jiminez get hurt? I noticed he came out early yesterday.