No Lead Safe When Playing AZL Cubs
Cubs 2008 20th round draft pick and current AZL batting leader LF Jericho Jones (who is now hitting .437) rapped out four hits (three singles and a double), 1B Bryan Jost reached base five times (two singles, a triple, and two walks), and RHP Ryan Searle returned from Australia to throw three innings of no run/no hit relief (0/5 BB/K), as the AZL Cubs rallied from an early 8-0 deficit to edge the AZL Brewers 9-8 at Fitch Park Field #3 Saturday morning.
The 19-year old Searle spent the past two months at the MLB Australian Academy, where he led all MLBAAP startng pitchers in wins, ERA, WHIP, and K. He attended Cubs Minor League Camp and Extended Spring Training in both 2007 and 2008, but yesterday was his first "official" minor league appearance. It was the most dominating outing by any AZL Cubs pitcher at Fitch Park so far this year, with the possible exception of 1st round pick Andrew Cashner's one-inning pro debut on Thursday.
The MLBAAP concluded it's season last week amidst heavy rains that forced cancellation of the last couple of games. In addition to Searle's superior performance, 18-year old left-handed hitting OF Sean Williams hit 330/412/455, good for 3rd in the league in BA, 5th in OBP, and 7th in SLG. He also finished 3rd in doubles and 4th in hits, as well as tying for 2nd in the league in RBI and 4th in runs scored.
At least four Australians (Searle and Williams, plus two 17 year old pitchers--LHP Cody Hams and RHP Adam Spencer) will be attending Cubs Minor League Camp next March.
A former Australian cricket star (bowler), Hams attended Minor League Camp and EXST at Fitch Park this season before returning to Australia with Searle on May 21st for the MLBAAP season.
Korean SS Hak-Ju Lee also attended the MLBAAP this year, but he participated only in the "Two Week Phase" before returning to South Korea.
Like the four Australians, Lee will be at Cubs Minor League Camp next season, and he might possibly also attend the AZ Instructional League at Fitch Park in September-October 2008 (still TBD), as RHP Dae-Eun Rhee (currently rehabbing from recent Tommy John Surgery) did last year.
To be fair to Emery and Trestman the foreshadowing of last year started happening well before them with the failure or mismanaging of multiple draft classes forcing the team to overspend in a free agency market that is even worse than baseball. Kyle Long seems like a good pick but they traded away another good one in Olson because of Martz's stupidity and inability to change his offense to fit the team talent.
HAGSAG: I think Domonic Brown does fit the criteria of a reclamation project, but unless he is willing to accept a minor league contract with an NRI to Spring Training, I don't think the Cubs would be interested given where the Cubs are right now. A couple of years ago? Yes. But probably not now.
Brown would be better-off going to a club that is rebuilding and re-establish his value there, like Chris Coghlan did with the Cubs. And if he can re-establish his value, he could get traded to a contender at the trade deadline and take it from there.
"they just fade away"
(Except in the cases of no-fade lefties like Moyer, Orosco and Rich Hill.)
Amazing to me how quickly it fell apart under Trestman. Year 1, they were a Chris Conte brain fart away from making the playoffs. Year 2 -- coach, staff and GM all fired.
I am sure Jonathon Mota will be signed next.
AZ Phil, what is your thoughts on Domonic Brown as a reclamation project?
He also played LF in deference to Curtis Granderson.
Meh... other moves to make...hope to see a move or two soon.
I haven't seen much Bears football this year - difficult to watch the games out here, but the game I saw the week before I was watching in shock as I saw them actually make tackles. And Cutler has looked really good, too.
I guess people can quibble about play calling, but the team I saw is way more than 50% better coached (my only very minor disagreement with your comment).
Under Trestman, the team didn't do anything right. This team played like a well coached team when I saw them play the Rams.
"What is sometimes overlooked about Vogelbach because of his "bad body" and because he has struggled so much defensively is that he is a hard worker, has a great attitude, loves to play the game, and is very well-liked by his teammates, and while that may not seem important, teams do actually value stuff like that. "
As well they should. Replace a word here and there and you are describing any worker someone would hire.
Hak-Ju Lee signs a minor league contract with SF Giants.
Some closure on the 6 degrees of Separation for Matt Garza/Chris Archer
-0.3 WAR in 7.1ip last year...
-3 WAR projected over the course of a season.
the cubs just added an all-star reliever's worth of work by losing b.schlitter.
Rockies sign Brian Schlitter to a minor league contract. Good luck in Coors Field. Enough said.
i'll take him over frandy since it's unlikely he'll progress as a SS (and 2nd isn't looking much better).
i hope patton's delivery deception skills play well in the bigs over time. cubs need pitching options that are MLB-ready and dude fits the bill for a MLB/AAA mix...both needed.
I'm not saying he's great, but can we agree on the word "decent"? Became a pro at 23, called up at 26; nothing wrong with that trajectory, he hasn't been knocking around. Even in the majors his SO9 is 9.7. In the minors it's 12.2, so he's always missed bats, and without being a wild man: his walks are low. He cost the Cubs an unheralded A-ball middle infielder and a roster spot.
he's a righty (a 27 year old one that's going to be 28 before spring training starts) that throws low 90s with a low-80s slider. that's as ordinary as it gets for a righty reliever.