Splitsville in Scottsdale for Cubs and Giants
Robert Hernandez was clubbed for seven runs in a nightmarish bottom of the 1st inning and the EXST Giants cruised to 9-3 victory over the EXST Cubs on Indian Bend Park Field #4 in Scotsdale this morning, but not to worry too much, because Logan Watkins and Matt Cerda drove-in two runs apiece and Su-Min Jung and Toby Matchulat combined to throw six innings of two-hit shutout ball, as the another squad of EXST Cubs defeated another squad of EXST Giants 5-1 at Indian Bend Park Field #3, in a game played simultaneous to the one on Field #4. And I was able to watch both games simutaneously, too.
Dwayne Kemp returned to the lineup (he was a DH on Field #4) after missing a week-plus of games while nursing a sore quad, and he looked rusty, too, striking out in each of his first three ABs.
And the Cubs didn't bring enough position players along to fill the normal two DH slots. Outfielders Jae-Hoon Ha and Francisco Guzman did not make the trip to Scottsdale today. I know Ha is injured (he has been in shorts and t-shirt for several days now), but I don't why Guzman was absent.
So then here are the abridged box scores from the two games (Cubs players only):
SQUAD "A" PLAYING ON FIELD #3:
1. Jose Valdez, CF: 3-4 (1B, 1B, 5-3 SH, 1B, 6-3 - 1 R, 1 SB,1 CS)
2. Logan Watkins, SS: 2-3 (L-8, 1B, BB, 1B - 2 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB)
3. Matt Cerda, 2B: 2-4 (F-7, 1B, 2B, F-7 - 2 RBI)
4. John Contreras, 1B: 0-3 (6-3, 5-3, BB, K)
5. Jericho Jones, RF: 0-2 (BB, BB, K, 3-U - 1 R)
6. Chris Weimer, LF: 0-4 (L-6, L-6, K, F-8)
7. Juan Medina, C: 1-4 (1B, F-7, K, F-9 - 1 R)
8. George Matheus, 3B: 1-4 (F-8, 2B, 3-1, F-9)
9. Jose Guevara, DH: 0-1 (F-8)
NOTE: #9 spot in order was skipped until the 8th inning, when hard-workin' Jose Guevara was finally able to get an AB after being assigned to warm-up pitchers (from both Cubs squads) in the bullpen for most of the game.
1. Su-Min Jung - 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 5/2 GO/FO
2. Toby Matchulat - 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 2/3 GO/FO
3. Yohan Gonzalez - 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP,1 WP, 2/2 GO/FO
SS Logan Watkins had two errors (one throwing error and one fielding error, both allowing the batter to reach base safely), and 3B George Matheus had one fielding error allowing batter to reach base, although the batter was immediately thrown out 7-4 (LF Chris Weimer to 2B Matt Cerda) when he tried to take 2nd on the play.
SQUAD "B" PLAYING ON FIELD #4:
1. Hak-Ju Lee, SS: 1-4 (F-8, 1B, F-7, 6-3 - 1 RBI)
2. Dwayne Kemp, DH: 0-4 (K, K, K, 5-3)
3. Kevin Soto, CF: 1-2 (1B, 6-3, BB - 1 R, 1 SB)
4. Sean Hoorelbeke, 1B: 1-3 (6-4 FC, F-8, 1B - 1 R, 1 SB)
5. Alvaro Sosa, C: 0-3 (K, 6-3, K)
6. Robert Bautista, 3B: 2-3 (K, 1B, 2B - 1 RBI)
7. Jesus Morelli, RF: 0-3 (K, F-8, P-4)
8. Sean Williams, LF: 0-3 (K, 4-3, 5-3)
9. Jose Made, 2B: 0-1 (BB, K, BB - 1 R, 2 SB)
1. Robert Hernandez - 2.1 IP, 9 H, 7 R (7 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 1 HR, 3/4 GO/FO
2. Dionis Nunez - 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 GIDP, 4/1 GO/FO
3. George Pineda - 1.2 IP, 1 H, 2 R (0 ER), 2 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 1 GIDP, 4/0 GO/FO
P George Pineda had one fielding error (dropped throw covering 1st base) leading to two unearned runs scoring later in the inning, and 1B Sean Hoorelbeke had one fielding error (two base error, batted ball caromed off his glove and into right-field foul territory, allowing batter to reach 2nd base)
Alvaro Sosa: 0-2 CS
WEATHER: Temperature got up into the 90's by the end of the games, but it was also partly cloudy
ATTENDANCE: 13 (including Hak-Ju Lee's family visiting from South Korea)
Tommy La Stellar
Scherzer is not a bad hitting pitcher, but really???
This game is already bumming me out. Hope the Cubs brought their bats.
Just read that when Hendricks starts the Cubs have won 33 times in his first 50 games which is the best for any Cubs starter since the 1940s. So he might not be getting a ton of wins but he's at least leaving the team in a winnable spot
That and we've had a lot of terrible teams.
I agree, but just wanted to point out that Hendricks didn't really have a significant difference between his first and second half like Hammel did. Instead he had alternating good and below average months last year, without much fluctuation in his peripherals except a BB-heavy August and some up-and-down in opp avg. Mostly the team just couldn't win games for him in the months he pitched well. His 16 starts in May, July, and Sep/Oct (in which he limited opponents to OPS+ of 88, 75, and 44) resulted in a 4-2 record.
I think with Hammels and Hendricks struggles the 2nd half we forget how dominate of 1st halves they had and how many games they won us as the offense was struggling. We also forget they are back of the rotation guys and we can't be expecting ace quality there.
Maybe it's just Werth & Ross I'm noticing. Weird.
CRAIG: Jose Albertos is not chunky like Fernando. He's built more like Dylan Cease. Exact same body type. And his delivery is free & easy. He's definitely not a "max effort" guy.
Hendricks after 50 MLB starts: 17-11, 3.45 ERA, 1.12 WHIP. Not bad for a #5 starter. He may be a 6-inning max guy, but, if he can keep those stats up, I will gladly take it.
Speaking of WHIP -- last year, he was tied for 11th in the NL. Tied with Hammel.
Last year's NL rank in WHIP: Arrietta 2nd, Lester 9th, Haren 10th, Hammel T11th, Hendricks T11th. Wow.
I went to a Nats game in DC two years ago while looking at colleges with my son -- it's a fun park, worth a visit if you are in the area.
I also saw the "slowness" thing -- particularly Werth, who would mosey out of RF about 5 seconds before the inning started.
It's Dusty's fault. It'll be the end of them.
Speaking of how teams "look", my take on the Nats- It's really weird, but the pace of the entire team seems slow. Slow walking to the plate, slow on the mound, even on some routine groundouts, it looked as if there wasn't a ton of hustle. Don't get me wrong, when the ball is hit to their outfielders, they get after the ball, I'm really referring to non-critical action- they mosey around. It's kind of odd. Maybe that "calm power" is part of the Nats ethos, idk.
My favorite moment of Hendricks' performance last night was the last strikeout he rung up- the cajones it took to throw a high, 86MPH fastball to Zimmerman on a 0-2 count. And he swung the bat like it was a 96MPH heater. I literally laughed out loud.
In listening to Maddon's post-game, he is interested in how these other teams "look" to him. He is assessing for today...and tomorrow. I love this guy.
One observation from last night: Joe Ross is incredibly slow. 20-30 seconds between pitches at times. Hendrix had a nice, peppy rhythm which is great to see.
I know there are plenty of purists here which I applaud, but the game just will not sustain itself unless change of pace rules come into play. Pitch clock, improve the shit-ass reviews, mound visits (there is a clock for this), batter time outs, etc.
Thanks, Phil. Albertos at 17, and having gotten a good signing bonus ($1.5, even though as Mexican prospect I think his team gets half of that?), throwing in the 90's and showing some command of a curveball sounds pretty interesting, even if that control is only for a dozen-pitch sample.
What kind of a frame does he have? Is he on the stocky and short-ish side (I'm recalling Fernando Valenzuela!), or somewhat taller? A lot of 17-year olds have projection, "when he fills out" projection. Would that apply at all for Albertos?