Cubs Out-Fox Sox at Camelback Ranch

Jake Fox had three hits and drove in five runs with a two-run double and a three-run homer, Milton Bradley drove in three runs with a two-run home run and an RBI single, Alfonso Soriano drove in two runs with a solo HR and an RBI single, and Sean Marshall started the game and pitched five strong innings (getting ten ground balls), as the Cubs drubbed the White Sox 13-2 in Cactus League action at Camelback Ranch this afternoon

box score  

I was not at the game, but I can provide the scoring summary: 

Top of the 3rd (Cubs batting versus LHP Mark Buehrle): Alfonso Soriano hit a solo HR and Ryan Theriot singled with one out, and then Milton Bradley hit a two-run HR with two outs.

Cubs lead 3-0

Bottom of the 3rd (White Sox batting versus Sean Marshall): Left-handed hitter Dewayne Wise singled with one out, and scored on a two-out double by left-handed hitter Chris Getz.

Cubs  lead 3-1

Top of the 4th (Cubs batting versus LHP Mark Buehrle): Mike Fontenot singled leading off the inning, and scored on a two-out RBI double by So Taguchi. Alfonso Soriano singled to score Taguchi, and Ryan Theriot walked, advancing Soriano to 2nd. Then Reed Johnson singled scoring Soriano from 2nd, (RHP Jack Egbert relieved Buehrle). Milton Bradley singled, scoring Theriot. Jake Fox doubled, scoring R. Johnson and Bradley, and then Mike Fontenot singled, but J. Fox was thrown out at the plate by White Sox RF Brian Anderson trying to score frrom 2nd....

Cubs lead 9-1 

Bottom of the 5th (White Sox batting versus Sean Marshall): Josh Fields hit a solo HR leading off the inning.

Cubs lead 9-2

Sean Marshall pitched five innings, allowing two runs (both earned) on five hits (two singles by Paul Konerko and one by Dewayne Wise, the Chris Getz RBI double, and the solo HR by Josh Fields), no walks, one HBP (Carlos Quentin), and a WP, while striking out three (Jim Thome twice and Alexei Ramirez once), with a phenomenal 10/2 GO/FO.

Top of the 6th (Cubs batting versus RHP Scott Linebrink ): Ryan Theriot singled leading off the inning, PH Micah Hoffpauir walked with one out, and Jake Fox hit a three-run home run.

Cubs lead 12-2 

Top of the 7th (Cubs batting versus RHP Randy Williams): Koyie Hill singled leading off the inning, and then Andres Blanco and Bobby Scales singled with two outs, with Scales driving in K. Hill.

Cubs lead 13-2

The Cubs also loaded the bases in the top of the 8th with two outs versus RHP Lance Broadway (Estaban German and Mark Johnson singled and Joey Gathright walked to load the bases), but Nelson Perez (up from minor league camp) struck out.

Jeff Samardzija, Luis Vizcaino,  Mike Stanton, and Chad Fox each worked one shutout inning of relief for the Cubs...

Samardzija allowed a one-out single to Jim Thome in the 6th before striking out Ben Broussard and A,. J. Pierzynski, Vizcaino pitched a 1-2-3 7th inning (striking out Gordon Beckham and Josh Fields and then getting Wise on a GO)  Stanton allowed a one-out single to left-handed hitting Getz and a two-out walk to left-handed hitting Thome in the 8th with a 1/2 GO/FO (no strikeouts), and Chad Fox pitched the bottom of the 9th and allowed a two-out single to Fields and struck out two (Beckham and Wise).

I think it's fairly obvious that Jake Fox can hit, and he probably has the most power of any player in the Cubs minor league system. The problem is, his best position is DH, but if he stays in the N. L., his only chance to DH is a couple of weeks in June during interleague play and then (maybe!) in the World Series. 

Fox is a defensive liability no matter where he plays, but it looks like the position where he might have a chance to become at least passably mediocre is 1st base, and so it appears that the Cubs have decided to get him as many reps as possible there, which is probably why he hasn't played any LF, RF, 3B, or catcher so far this Spring, even occasionally.

Fox will likely play 1B at Iowa in 2009,and perhaps could get a call-up for interleague play, where he can platoon with Hoffpauir at DH, and then again on September 1st, when he can spend the month of September hitting off the bench as the Cubs #1 RHPH (presuming he can handle that duty).

Unfortunately, Foxy's long-term future is probably not with the Cubs.   

The Cubs (and Jake Fox) return to Mesa tomorrow to face the Seattle Mariners at Ho Ho Kam Park

 

Comments

You are the man, AZ Phil
Here's to the Phil to Phlorida Phund
Cheers

Phil, I know that you cant be in two places at once, but is there anything exciting going on at Fitch Park?

Phil: Could you provide an update on how Josh Vitters has looked this spring?

AZ Phil,

You called the Harden opening the season on the DL correctly. Sun Times reporting this morning that his opening the season on the active roster 'in jeopardy'. I'd post the link if I wasn't internet-challenged.

This is an Arlington Daily Herald story, but it's also on Harden trying to be ready in time for his first regular season start:

http://www.dailyherald.com/story/?id=280805

I say give him most of April off, let Marshall take his starts. Heck, let Heilman take some of the 5th starter spots and see what he's got and give Harden until May to be ready. Then you have some extra time to evaluate those bullpen arms and see what you've got in Patton, Guzman, etc., maybe even see if a trade market opens up for Gaudin (if they still kind of want to get rid of him).

You must have missed it, but last week LOU said Atkins is the probable sixth starter.

who cares...it makes so little sense it probably won't happen. he's not on the active roster and is ready to start training with his AAA teammates soon.

and either way marshall can shift to 4th and skip the 5th starter for while...heilman is properly stretched and breaking with the club.

Speaking of opening on the DL, former Cub great Rich Hill will be there, too. Apparently his rehab from "elbow soreness" isn't proceeding quickly enough for him to be ready by Opening Day. Story says they're shooting for the middle of April.

http://baltimore.orioles.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?...

Rumor has it that Juan Pierre will be a White Sux soon, per Sun-Times twitter page.

Ha... *points and laughs*

Gammons says Marcus Thames is available.

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?entryID=...

He doesn't fit on the currently constructed Cubs, eseentially being a right-handed Hoffpower, but having seen many Tigers games in the past few years, let me say I LOVE this guy as the power bat off the bench. He might be the best pure power hitter in baseball - better than Branyan, Howard or anyone.

Isn't he another DH?

As has been pointed out by AZ PHIL, at least HOFF is sparkling with the glove at 1B.

And, fox from the other side is all you need, as a DH. Just don't see much point in Thames on a NL team like the Cubs...

"He doesn't fit on the currently constructed Cubs, essentially being a right-handed Hoffpower"

Just pointing out that the purest power hitter in baseball can be had for a song. I don't think he fits on the '09 Cubs either.

Thames is a 31-year-old DH type with a career 105 OPS+. There won't be many teams chomping at the bit to get him. I'd much rather have Hoffpauir. I might prefer Fox as well, since he seems to be improving with the bat. Good luck finding a gig, Thames.

But, where do you get this "best pure hitter in baseball" bullshit from?

I don't want the guy for a "song". He's surpurflous on the Cubs, and if he is such "great" pure hitter as you say, even on an AL team, he's not wanted.

I meant, "best pure power hitter..."

Who would rather call on - for one AB - to hit a HR? I'll take Thames. That's what I mean by "pure power hitter."

When do you call on a guy just to hit a homerun? When is it a homerun or nothing? I'll take Hoffpauir over Thames. More likely to put the ball in play and I would guess he's only slightly less likely to hit a homerun, maybe more likely to collect an extra base hit.

Do you mean good batting practice hitter?

might as well have dubois if you want a guy who closes his eyes and swings as hard as he can...at least dubois can swing hard without aggravating his back/side every few months.

power is about all thames does right and it's streaky at best. his total lack of speed is a killer. his glove isn't THAT horrible, but the guy can't run down anything to get to it.

parachat be open for USA vs. Japan...

҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚̕̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉ ̕̚̕̚ ҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚̕
̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚
̕̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉ ̕̚̕̚▲҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚̕
̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉ ̕̚̕̚҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚̕̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉ ̕̚̕̚
҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚̕̚
̕̚̕̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉ ̕̚̕̚҉̵̞̟̠̖̗̘̙̜̝̞̟̠͇̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̊̋̌̍̎̏̐̑̒̓̔̿̿̿̕̚̕̚̕̚ ̔̕̚̕̚҉ ̕̚̕̚

wtf

it's text garbage...just parachatting it up...hehe

ah, so desu ka

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  • Very odd -- TLS .308/.419 in July (in 26 AB). Strange move for a team struggling to score runs. Hard to imagine Coghlan doing better than that. Maybe they like Coghlan better as a PH?

    billybucks 6 min 12 sec ago view
  • Sorry to nitpick -- but the first game wasn't a save.

    billybucks 20 min 56 sec ago view
  • Wow La Stella sent to Iowa and Coghlan brought up. I'm not a huge Stella fan but he has been hitting lately and is to me better than Coghlan. Neither are good defensively but I guess Coghlan can play the outfield allowing Bryant to stay at 3rd more where he's better.

    johann 22 min 25 sec ago view
  • Not 2nd to last but Cubs are definitely bottom of the pack in the 2nd half in oWAR and wRC+. #1 in dWAR though which is certainly a good sign for the playoffs.

    johann 27 min 30 sec ago view
  • I was going to say that you wouldn't want Heyward to achieve Soriano's OBP--.317 with the Cubs--but now I see that he's already done that. Pitchers have lost their fear of him.

    Oh, well, at least Chapman seems to be as good as advertised.

    VirginiaPhil 36 min 7 sec ago view
  • Thanks to E-man and Quiet Man for the link on Chapman in a previous post. It's funny because I never really noticed Chapman's delivery until I saw him doing it in a blue uniform. Two saves in a Cubs uniform already. I hope they don't need him today, despite that smooth delivery.

    Old and Blue 38 min 4 sec ago view
  • Cubs are middle of the pack in average, 5th in OPS, 2nd in walks, 4th in runs scored in MLB. Their runs scored ranks 17th in the MLB in July.

    Boston, leading everything, continues to rake in July.

    Old and Blue 40 min 31 sec ago view
  • Lester has given up one run or fewer in 11 starts this year. So I'd answer yes. Three of his last four starts were duds, yes. Not worried about him at all. Arrieta is concerning, to be sure. I look it at as, what he was doing was historic, so the regression was bound to happen. He showed in his start against the Mets that he's still capable, and I'd bet on him regaining his form.

    Tito 1 hour 37 min ago view
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    crunch 1 hour 43 min ago view
  • This is not an attack...But In what stat are the Cubs second from last in MLB, in hitting? I don't see this.

    Dusty Baylor 2 hours 50 min ago view
  • How odd the stats:

    Cubs 1st in pitching in MLB

    2nd to last in hitting.

    In May they were 1st in both.

    The E-Man 3 hours 6 min ago view
  • trevor clifton (high-A) could be interesting in a couple seasons...could even become a high/middle rotation guy. he's got a lot of pluses in his pitching except control.

    eric leal's (high-A) progression through the minors should be worth watching even if only projects to be an mid/end-rotation starter.

    we also gotta keep a long-distance eye on guys like jose paulino (ss-A) and preston morrison (A).

    crunch 11 hours 45 min ago view
  • As Johnny Bach used to say when it was time for the MJ Bulls to crank up the defensive pressure: "Release the Dobermans!", and Jordan, Pippen, Rodman and Harper would just suffocate the other team.

    I'd love to add Carl Jr. to that group - he's got the stuff.

    billybucks 12 hours 5 min ago view
  • Historically, the Moneyball guys have been great at identifying productive hitters. Not so much with pitchers.

    billybucks 12 hours 6 min ago view
  • Wow - Pierce Johnson with an ERA of 8.01 in 42IP!

    What a stud prospect! Must be pitching with a pierced johnson.

    Looks like Ryan Williams is the only legit prospect there. That is sad...

    The E-Man 12 hours 8 min ago view
  • Well it would seem that's all they need now. "Stropy" can have his moments, but he's been more consistent post-asg.

    The E-Man 12 hours 17 min ago view