Archive - May 2008

Hernandez Free at Last, Niko Knocks a Nookie

With VP of Player Personnel Oneri Fleita and about a dozen Cubs scouts in attendance, LHP Mark Pawelek threw three shutout innings of one-hit ball and Las Vegas Durango HS SS Niko Vasquez crushed a two-run homer onto 8th Street, leading the EXST Cubs to a 3-1 victory over the EXST A's at Fitch Park Field #3 this morning.

Game 56 Thread / Rockies @ Cubs (3 of 4)

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SP *Glendon Rusch SP Ryan Dempster
  1-2, 6.41, 12 K, 11 BB, 19.2 IP
6-2, 2.56, 56 K, 29 BB, 70.1 IP
CF Willy Taveras LF Alfonso Soriano
RF *Seth Smith SS Ryan Theriot
1B *Todd Helton 1B Derrek Lee
LF Ryan Spilborghs 3B Aramis Ramirez
3B *Ian Stewart C Geovany Soto
C Chris Iannetta RF *Kosuke Fukudome
2B Jeff Baker 2B Mark DeRosa
SS *Omar Quintanilla CF Reed Johnson
P *Glendon Rusch P Ryan Dempster














Former Cub Glendon Rusch makes his first appearance at Wrigley since September 4, 2006. After a none too successful comeback with the Padres earlier this year (6.41 ERA in 12 relief appearances), the Rockies signed him, sent him to Triple-A Colorado Springs, recalled him after two successful appearances for the Sky Sox, and you know now everything you need to know about what a desperate season the Colorado Rockies are having.

May 30th

EXST Cubs Give Angels the Heat at Diablo

Starlin Castro went 3-4 with a single, a double, and a triple, Junior Lake crushed a two-run homer, Jose Made tripled twice, and 17-year old Dominican LHP Jeffry Antigua pitched four strong innings of one-run ball (retiring the final ten men he faced), leading the EXST Cubs to an 8-1 victory over the EXST Angels in a Rush Hour "Beat the Heat" Special (9 AM start) at Diablo Park Field #3 in Tempe this morning.

Game 55 Thread / Rockies @ Cubs (2 of 4)

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SP Aaron Cook SP *Ted Lilly
  7-3, 2.82, 35 K, 22 BB, 76.2 IP
5-4, 5.23, 58 K, 21 BB, 62 IP
CF Willy Taveras LF Alfonso Soriano
RF #Jonathan Herrera 2B *Mike Fontenot
LF Ryan Spilborghs 1B Derrek Lee
3B Garrett Atkins C Geovany Soto
1B *Todd Helton RF *Kosuke Fukudome
C Chris Iannetta CF *Jim Edmonds
RF Jeff Baker 3B Mark DeRosa
SS *Omar Quintanilla SS Ronny Cedeño
P Aaron Cook P *Ted Lilly














With rain falling and plenty of those intimidating orange and red spots on the weather radar, we could well be looking at a rainout. That being the case, I'm going to save all of my good Omar Quintanilla material for another occasion.

This is the Rockies' only visit to Wrigley this season, and the Cubs have already made the trip to Denver, so a washout would presumably create a doubleheader. I imagine Saturday would be the DH day, so as not to complicate the teams' travel plans. (The Rockies play in Los Angeles Monday night, while the Cubs will be in San Diego.)

May 29th

Game 54 Recap: Cubs 8, Rockies 4

Best Team in Baseball

Wuertz (1-1), pitchers who can't field their position, first MLB RBIs, double-steals

Herges (2-2)

Box Score
, Photos

Things to Take from This Game

1. Balanced Attack

Soriano, Lee, Ramirez, Soto and Johnson all had RBIs, with XBH by Ramirez and Fukudome (2Bs) and Lee (Solo HR.)

2.Cotts almost has a good sixth inning

Almost. He relieved Marquis with a 3-1 lead and the bases loaded, one out. He gets Willie Tavares in an 0-2 count, before Tavares bloops one just over the drawn in Lee, scoring two and tying the game at three. He K's Seth Smith, and seems to K Helton swinging, but it's just barely a foul tip, popping out of Soto's glove. Helton walks on the next pitch. So much for Cotts' return to the majors. Marquis wasn't great, but some bad luck after he had left gave him a final line worse than it might have been.

3. Messy 7th gives Cubs a comeback

A blooper into the bermuda triangle, another soft single, an error, a hit by pitch and a sacrifice fly gave the Cubs two generous runs off of Matt Herges.

4. Messy 8th gives Cubs an easy win

A double, a bad throw on a sac bunt, a single, a double steal, a single with a dropped ball on a play at the plate, and the Cubs get three more in the eighth, for an 8-4 lead. After some shakey middle-infield play by the Cubs early in the game, it was the Rockies who played sloppy the rest of the way.

With the win, the Cubs move past a certain AL East powerhouse, to claim the best record in baseball. The cream of the crop details, follow.


Game 54 Thread / Rockies @ Cubs (1 of 4)

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SP *Jeff Francis SP Jason Marquis
  1-5, 6.18, 46 K, 24 BB, 59.2 IP
2-3, 4.97, 29 K, 20 BB, 50.2 IP
CF *Scott Podsednik LF Alfonso Soriano
RF *Seth Smith SS Ryan Theriot
1B *Todd Helton 1B Derrek Lee
3B Garrett Atkins 3B Aramis Ramirez
LF Ryan Spilborghs C Geovany Soto
2B *Ian Stewart RF *Kosuke Fukudome
C Yorvit Torrealba 2B Mark DeRosa
SS Omar Quintanilla CF Reed Johnson
P *Jeff Francis P *Jason Marquis












The darlings of the National League in 2007 make their annual visit to Wrigley Field, bypassing the normal chartered bus in favor of an escorted ambulance. The Rockies find 1/3 of their starting lineup on the disabled list (Troy Tulowitzki, Matt Holliday and Brad Hawpe), along with five pitchers and Tulowitzki's replacement, Clint "Deer Meat" Barmes. It appears the devil is cashing in on the deal they made last August.

Yes, We Have No Banana Break (Today)

As many of you know by now, Thursday is usually Camp Day at Cubs Extended Spring Training.

And so it was in fact today, as the EXST Cubs first had some fielding drills & took BP on Fitch Park Fields 1, 2, and 4, followed by a three-inning intrasquad game on Field #3 (and with no Banana Break in between, either!).

May 28th

Game 53 Recap: Cubs 2, Dodgers 1


Howry (1-2 ), getting to a W/L record against the Dodgers franchise that looks like binary.

Park (1-1 ), not getting Z a win, inconsistent strike zones


Things to Take from This Game

1. Lowe rolls, Z keeps us in it.

Derek Lowe looked pretty unstopable. After getting Lee to GIDP with the first two hitters on in the first, Lowe didn't look like he was challenged much by the Cubs offense all night. Z didn't have his best stuff, but labored through 8 innings and 130 pitches while only giving up one run. That came in the fourth, the result of a couple singles followed by two walks, the second one bringing in a run. It would have been a miserable way to lose a 1-0 game, but...


2. The top of the 8th vs. the bottom of the 9th.

The Dodgers had a chance to add some insurance runs in the 8th, as the Cubs defense lets Zambrano down and he's suddenly nearing 130 pitches with a bullpen that has just begun to warm up. Z gets out of it, however striking out Kemp and keeping the game at 1-0. Compare that to the bottom of the 9th, where Saito has a very, very rare fit of wildness. Like Z, he battles hard with far from his best stuff, but Soto manages a bases-loaded sacrifice fly to tie up the game at one.


3. Pulling out a tough win in the 10th

Pinch-hitting, Fontenot lined a double into the left-center gap. Soriano then hit a little blooper down the left field line that just did drop in fair territory. Fontenot scored uncontested, giving a very satisfying result to a hard-fought nail-biter of a game.

The sweeping details, below.



Recent comments

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  • how did ej martinez go from asking for $10m, to supposedly mulling over $7m offers, to eventually signing for $3m?

    ...and what happened with him and the giants a few days ago?

  • Its not official until AZ Phil adds him to the Cubs Depth Chart!

  • Just freakin love it!

  • From Keith Law:

  • This from a Kiley McDaniel chat a couple weeks ago...

    "Comment From Wrenzie
    Who has more ceiling between Yusniel Diaz or Eddy Julio Martinez?

    Kiley McDaniel: Martinez. I have Eddy (20 years old) as a 65 runner with a 55 arm and 50 raw power that profiles as an everyday CF that could be above average depending on if the bat is a 45 or a 55. I have Yusniel (19) as a 60 runner with a 55 arm and 40 raw power that can be an everyday guy if he hits enough (50 or 55)."

  • "Per Jesse Sanchez at, Cubs reportedly have signed 20-year old Cuban OF Eddy Julio Martinez for $3M bonus.
    Arizona Phil 7 hours 23 min ago"

  • it's day old news, and it's got nothing to do with the cubs, but ichiro signed a $2m deal with MIA (with a $2m option for 2017).

    neat. 41 years old and damn close to 3000 hits.

    also, rain delays suck.

  • take that giants

  • I think that if a team objects to the 1-game wildcard playin game so much, they could just win the pennant and avoid themselves the trouble.

  • Per Jesse Sanchez at, Cubs reportedly have signed 20-year old Cuban OF Eddy Julio Martinez for $3M bonus. 

  • BLOCK: Of course any advantage is an advantage. An MLB, NBA, or NHL team getting the extra game at home in a seven game series is an advantage, I just don't think it is enough of an advantage for winning a division and/or having the best record in a conference or league over the course of an 82-game season (NBA and NHL) or 162 game series (MLB).

  • TEX takes the opening game from TOR (@TOR) 5-3.

    TOR lost bautista + donaldson in-game due to injuries...TEX lost beltre...dunno if any will be lingering issues leading to missed games.

  • Ride the Kid Magic! Schwarber hadn't homered in a long time before last night.

  • Greg Maddux was 8-18 in his rookie season. Kyle has the 8 wins down pat.

    Think Baby Maddux.

    Prof. Harold Hill's THINK system at work.

    Kyle is on the far left.

  • I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.

  • Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.