Cubs Rally to Edge A's at Fitch Park
Javier Baez slugged a solo home run, singled, stole a base, and scored three runs, Jeimer Candelario ripped a pair of RBI doubles, reached base on an HBP, stole a base, and scored a run, Eduardo Gonzalez singled and tripled, drove-in a run, and scored another, and Garrett Schlecht reached base four times on three walks and an RBI single, as the Cubs rallied for a run in the 8th and one in the 9th to edge the Athletics 7-6 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.
The game was extended an extra half-inning so that Pete Levitt could throw a second inning.
Manny Ramirez was the DH for the A’s, and made four Plate Appearances (batting once in each of the first four innings).
Facing Tayler Scott, ManRam grounded out in the top of the 1st, popped out to 1st baseman Trevor Gretzky in the 2nd, and walked on a 3-2 pitch in the top of the 3rd, and then he grounded out 4-3 versus James Pugliese in the top of the 4th.
Scott started the game for the Cubs and did not have a good outing, allowing three runs on two hits (an RBI double and an RBI triple) and two walks in three innings of work.
Pugliese followed Scott to the mound and he was “lights-out,” tossing three no-hit shutout innings with five strikeouts. He also picked a runner off 1st base.
In EXST Cubs roster news, 2B Pierre LePage has been given his unconditional release. The 23-year old LePage was the Cubs 13th round draft pick out of the University of Connecticut in 2010, and he hit a combined 303/350/414 with 37 doubles and 19 SB in 134 minor league games (combined) at AZL Cubs, Boise, and Peoria 2010-11.
Despite hitting 375/527/562 in seven EXST games (21 PA) while rehabbing from a hamstring injury suffered at Minor League Camp in March, LePage really doesn’t have the versatility to play multiple positions, and with Logan Watkins the second-baseman at Tennessee, Ronald Torreyes and Rubi Silva sharing 2B duties at Daytona, and Zeke DeVoss firmly ensconsed at 2B in Peoria, there was just no place in the Cubs organization for LePage to go where he could get playing time.
But LePage should have no trouble scoring a starting 2B job in Independent baseball, perhaps with Bridgeport in the Atlantic League or Worcester in the Can Am League, both located in close proximity to LePage’s home in Connecticut. Players can make as much or sometimes more money playing independent ball than they can playing “A” ball for an MLB organization, but the bad part about Indy ball is that it doesn’t provide much opportunity for advancement.
Here is the abridged box score from today’s game (Cubs players only):
1. Trey Martin, CF: 0-4 (K, K, F-9, P-2, BB)
2. Carlos Penalver, DH #1: 0-4 (P-5, L-8, K, 6-3, BB)
3. Javier Baez, SS: 2-5 (K, E-6, 1B, HR, L-1 DP, 3 R, RBI, SB)
4. Wilson Contreras, DH-C: 0-4 (K, P-3, 1-3, BB, 6-3)
5. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 2-3 (K, 2B, 2B, HBP, R, 2 RBI, SB)
6. Eduardo Gonzalez, LF: 2-4 (K, 3B, 1B, K, R, RBI)
7a. Neftali Rosario, C-DH: 0-2 (K, E-5, RBI)
7b. Ryan Durrence, PH-DH: 0-1 (K, HBP)
8. Trevor Gretzky, 1B: 1-4 (P-6, 1B, F-7, K)
9a. Brian Inoa, 2B: 0-2 (K, K)
9b. Danny Lockhart, 2B: 1-1 (BB, 1B, 2 R, SB)
10. Garrett Schlecht, RF: 1-1 (BB, BB, 1B, BB, RBI, CS)
1. Tayler Scott: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 3 R (3 ER), 2 BB, 0 K, 41 pitches (24 strikes), 5/3 GO/FO
2. James Pugliese: 3.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K, 1 HBP, 1 PO, 36 pitches (21 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
3. Loiger Padron: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 37 pitches (26 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
4. Sheldon McDonald: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 17 pitches (11 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
5. Pete Levitt: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 21 pitches (13 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
CUBS ERRORS: 2
1. P Loiger Padron - E-1 (errant throw on pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner to advance to 2nd base and runner on 3rd base to score unearned run)
2. 3B Jeimer Candelario - E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Neftali Rosario: 1-1 CS
CF Trey Martin - batter thrown out 8-6-5 trying to stretch a double into a triple
WEATHER: Sunny and breezy with temperatures in the 80’s
if they dont win at least 130 games this season they can pack it all up, turn wrigley into a concert venue, and move the damn team to san jose.
I see where catcher Cael Brockmeyer was promoted to Tennessee a couple of days ago, to fill a roster spot vacated by David Freitas, recently promoted to Iowa. Caratini is the other catcher at Tennessee.
They've already clinched a minimum winning percentage of .607 for the month, and that's only if they lose the last 2 games. If they win both, they can push that up to .679. So much for "stumbling" in May. When you're winning over 60% of your games, you're doing baseball well.
If the best walk-off hit possible is a solo home run in a zero-zero game--Eloy did it tonight!
(But maybe it's a grand slam when your team is down three? He didn't do that.)
Number eight for Jimenez. His team is 31-17. Yesterday they scored 17 runs against Lansing. Two weeks ago it was 15 runs against the same team. This is a nice team, South Bend. The Cubs must have had a good draft last year.
Tonight the pitchers were Sands, Brooks and Effross.
He'll be fine. He's not some wimpy young pup.
In all seriousness the Cubs have the fewest amount of games played in the NL which means they're gonna be facing quite the grind later on including 24 games in a row at the end of June and beginning of July so I hope he does get a few days off.
Meh. He only got one hit today. Maybe give him a rest?
Good thing the Cubs have five left-handed batters in the lineup. Velasquez is just tearing thru the righties [edit - doesn't seem to faze Bryant!]
ben zobrist gets to ride up front tonight cause he's a good guy at sports.
cubs with a 5 run lead and a lackey shutout through 3ip \m/
HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC.
ERIC S: Best outing I've ever seen from Manny Rondon, and I've seen most of his outings since the Cubs got him from the Angels.
M. Rondon is competing with six others (Dylan Cease, Bryan Hudson, Jose Paulino, Pedro Silverio, Jesus Castillo, and Erling Moreno) for a starting slot at Eugene, and (as you can probably tell from the EXST box scores) the competition has gotten fierce over the last couple of weeks, With the exception of Moreno, the Eugene SP candidates have upped their game lately, and M. Rondon's outing yesterday was especially impressive/dominating.
E-MAN: Pierce Johnsion was mixing a 92-94 MPH fastball with a plus-change-up AND curve, and he threw strike-after-strike-after-strike with all three of his pitches. I believe that was the best command and pitch-efficiency I've ever seen from Johnson, who often pitches from behind in the count and issues too many walks.
Of course now he has to avoid a recurrence of the lat strain (whch he has had previously in his career) as well as all of the other miscellaneous physical problems he's had over the last three years (hamstring, quad, back, etc).
PHIL: Any movement on P. Johnsons pitches? What was his "out" pitch? I know he was working on a 4th pitch, so wondering what he is looking like these days. Thanks.
AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.