Game 69 Recap: Cubs 5, Tigers 6
5 Runs on the Road, Lilly Pitching, Not Enough.
- Soriano lines the first pitch down the left field line, and hopping up into the stands where they jut out, for a ground-rule double.
- Theriot, trying to bunt, runs a 3-0 count. Let him hit, LouPa. 3-2, and Theriot walks.
- Lee lazily flies to center, and the Cubs are 1-29 RISP on the trip. Soriano holds at second.
- Hoffpauir laces a shot down the right field line. Foul. Eventually K's swinging over a nice changeup, low and away. 1-30.
- Fox blasts a HR to deep, deep left-center. 411 feet, says BJB. 3-0 Cubs on Fox's first homerun.
- Fontenot chases a pitch in the dirt, strike three.
- Granderson bounces out to Fontenot at third
- and Santiago pops into foul territory in shallow left, where Theriot grabs it.
- Cabrera clobbers one to right-center. Hoffpauir makes an... entertaining... effort on the ball, which hits off one of teh weird angles in the fence and rolls away. Cabrera holds with a double.
- Thames pops into shallow center, easy play for Theriot.
- 3-0 to Fukudome. 3-1. Fukudome dribbles one back to Galarraga.
- Hill swings over an off-speed pitch for a foul-tip strike three.
- Blanco fouls off a pitch that A. nearly hit him and B. would have bounced and gone to the backstop. 0-2. Comes back to 2-2, before squibbing one down to Cabrera at third.
- Raburn flies to shallow center, where Fukudome gets it.
- Oh, this is interesting. A WGN replay of the Cabrera shot shows, pretty clearly, that it hit above the yellow line on the fence, richochetting back into the field of play off of a metal railing. No one protested it, and so it stands as a double instead of a home run. Blame it on the stupid geometry of the Detroit outfield, as it hit right where the fence angles backward.
- Inge K's swinging.
- Ordonez with an easy two-hopper to Fontenot.
- 3-0 to Soriano, swings at a pitch right in on the fists, and just does get it over Inge into left field.
- Theriot K's swinging at a slider.
- 2-2 to Lee. In the dirt, 3-2. Soriano runs, and Lee smokes one to deep left. Raburn, however, catches it up against the fence, and Soriano, who has rounded second, gets doubled-off by a step or two as he tries to return to first. Tough way to end the inning. Replay shows that Raburn wasn't anticipating a chance to double Soriano off, and Soriano was walking back toward second base after he had rounded it, before running when he saw there was a play.
- Dusty Ryan K's swinging at a change.
- Everett chops a slow curve towards short. Fontenot tries to cut it off, as he's supposed to, but Theriot's also coming straight in from short stop, and they knick each other, the ball rolling away. Ruled a hit.
- Granderson squibs one up the third base line, Fontenot makes a very nice play charging in and firing to first. Everett to second.
- Santiago hits a high fly ball down the left field line, dropping it into the bullpen. 3-2 Cubs.
- Hoffpauir grounds to Cabrera.
- Fox lines a single into left. Looking good today.
- Fontenot with a slow chop just to the right of Second base, Santiago with the awkward short flip to Everett at the bag, not enough time to double-up fontenot at first.
- Fukudome lines a nice shot into the right-center gap for a triple. 4-2 Cubs
- Hill misses a slider by about two feet. K.
- Thames finds the right-center gap for a double.
- Raburn hits a curve that gets way too much of the plate down the left-field line, off the base of the wall. Soriano plays it well, but it's still a run-scoring double. 4-3 Cubs.
- BJB claims that you didn't hear any complaining from the hitters about Comerica Park when it opened, unlike Padres hitters who complained about Petco. I'm willing to bet that doesn't stand up to ten seconds of googling.
- Inge smashes one to Fontenot, playing deep and off the bag. He blocks it, picks it up and throws to first, but Raburn manages to go from second to third on the play. More smart baserunning on Raburn's part than anything.
- Ordonez, mired in a 40-game HR drought, hits a HR into the left-field pen. Another curveball that got too much of the plate, too high. 4-5 Tigers. On an 0-2 pitch.
- Ryan grounds to Fontenot, who is seeing a lot of action at third.
- Magglio had his hair cut yesterday, to be sold on ebay for charity. BJB reports it was 2 poinds of hair. That seems like a lot of hair.
- Everett K's swinging.
- Blanco golfs one into right-center, Granderson makes an easy catch.
- Next pitch, Soriano hits one ten feet to the right of Blanco's, and Ordonez grabs it.
- Another quick fly ball off Lee's bat, to straight-away center. Len's pointed out that the Tigers seem to be doing a much better job of pulling their hits down the lines, whereas the Cubs keep on hitting towards the cavernous center-field.
- Granderson grounds one past Blanco's left, and into right.
- Santiago bunts to Lilly, advancing Granderson.
- Cabrera singles just in front of Soriano, forcing Granderson to hold up. Runners at 1 and 3.
- Thames swings, and chucks his bat directly over the Tigers' dugout, where about three fans refuse to let go of it. After determining possession, the attendants direct him where to trade it in for another. Eventually, Thames K's swinging.
- Raburn inside-outs one into right field for another hit. Granderson scores, Cabrera to second. Another weak breaking pitch, BJB calls it a slider. 4-6 Tigers.
- Inge bounces to Fontenot, 5-3 putout.
- 2-0 to Lee, he flails at a frisbee slider outside, then swings over a changeup. 2-2. Hits a deep fly down the right field line, just foul. Finally rolls into a 6-3.
- Hoffpauir grounds to first.
- Fox lines one down the left-field line for a double. Hanging slider.
- Fontenot with a weak swing and weaker grounder out to second, inning over. 2-34 RISP.
- 71 strikes, 22 balls for Lilly so far. Seems to match the observation that Lilly's missing with breaking stuff in the middle of the zone that he probably wants out of the zone.
- Ordonez K's swinging. 6 K, 0 BB for Lilly
- Ryan singles one out to Soriano. Hart warming up for Chicago.
- Ryan, the catcher, takes off with agreat jump. Has the base stolen, but slides over the base, comes off it just a bit, and Blanco keeps the tag on him, getting the out. Full count to Everett, and he walks on a curve or slider off the plate. Odd pitch selection for the 9th hitter in the lineup.
- Len points out that Bobby Seay and Brendon Lyon give you Seay-Lyon in the pen. Ouch.
- Granderson grounds to Blanco.
- Seay in for Galarraga
- Fukudome grounds between Santiago and Cabrera, Santiago gets it and Cabrera has to get back to 1st. Fukudome is running hard just in case, but he's out.
- Hill hits a sharp grounder right past Seay's feat. Santiago makes an impressive diving stop, throws from his right knee, and Hill is "out" at first. He sort of spins and throw up his arms at the call. It looks like he may have just barely been out.... Barely....
- Blanco flies out to right.
- Hart in. Santiago with the swinging bunt, Fontenot bare-hands it and makes a strong throw, Santiago barely beats it.
- Cabrera smashes one at Theriot, who makes the pick on a brutal hop. Turns it into a nice 6-4-3. Thames then lines out to Soriano.
- Lyon in for Seay.
- Soriano K's at a splitter or curve or something in the dirt. ugly.
- Theriot with the old inside-out swing, but it's a liner to Cabrera, easy out.
- Lee bounces toward the middle, Santiago gets it. May be the end of Lee's hitting streak.
- Raburn singles through the 6-5 hole.
- Looking like threatening weather in Detroit.
- Inge pops to medium-depth center, which, given how deep Fukudome plays and his bad read on the ball, requires him to race to get there.
- Grounder right to Theriot who shovels to Blanco. Ball hits him right in the mitt, as he's lowering it towards his throwing hand, which is simulanteously coming up for the ball, and the ball pops right out. To my eyes, he never had control of the ball and wasn't really beginnung the process of transfering it for the throw. But the ump gives us the out at second.
- Josh Anderson runs for Ordonez.
- Steals second, sliding in to Blanco's left knee on the play, knocking him down. Ball goes into center, and Anderson takes third. Ruled a tough error on Koyie Hill.
- Slow curve ball outside, for ball four to Dusty Ryan. Why are we throwing the two weakest hitters in the lineup curveballs with three-ball counts?
- Everett battles, and finally walks on a 3-2 count. At least this time it was on a fastball wide.
- Marshall in to face Granderson. Marshall has become the Cubs' version of Bill O'Reilly: his job is to go after every single lefty out there. And indeed, Marshall K's Granderson on a nice curve.
- Rodney in. Fastball outside, and Hoffpauir hits an impressive opposite-field HR into the first row of the left-field seats. 5-6 Tigers.
- Fox K's at a slider or change outside and in the dirt, out on the throw at first.
- Wind blowing out to center, we're told.
- Howling winds as the weather comes in. Kind of wild. Umbrellas being ripped to pieces. Fukudome looking up at the weather with some amazement
- Fontenot K's swinging at another off-speed pitch
- 2-1 to Fukudome, he lines an opposite-field double to the left-center gap, rolling to the wall. Nice swing at the fastball.
- Soto in to pinch-hit for Hill. Lots of change-ups, 1-2 count. 98 mph fastball, off the outside corner for ball two.
- Pitch in the dirt, and Soto checks his swing at it. Home plate ump calls it a strike swinging. How about going to First Base Ump for some help on a game-ending call, ump?
- No one is in parachat. I talk to myself.
- I am all alone. ~sigh~.
- Token_Cripple shows up and leaves, without me noticing. Chad arrives and I notice. We exchange theories on where everyone is.
- Andres Galarraga's second career as Armando.
- Hooray, Newports and CT_Steve join us, to chat about Soriano's baserunning.
- Theriot's worth, and where he should hit.
- woo, Lowitzki joins.
- "Hiding" people in your lineup, hah.
- More Theriot debating.
- and as long as we're acknowledging everyone who shows up in parachat today, we get Ahone_Ahtwo_Ahthree, one of my favorite TCR handles.
- Publishing pedagogical articles.
- Fox's potential
- Who isn't a triple away from the cycle?
- Savebot. Made in Korea.
- And we get Rob G. trying to end strong on a weak start to Parachat
- Fan Cam in Detroit.
- Domino's Pizza tells us to "put some South in your mouth." Oh my.
- Carlos appears.
- How much of this season is LouPa's fault?
- not much.
- Farrah Fawcett and Richard Dawson.
- Soto busted for pot.
- Who is Gilbert Knapp?
- Carlos's bad dream.
- Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, Dave's Twitter.
- Star Search.
- I continue to flunk analogies.
- Cheering for the rally. Best line of encouragement comes from CT_Steve: "Put some Captain Crunch on First Base for Soto!"
- Disappointment, again
Eloy Jimenez atop the leader board for minor-league home runs in the Cub system, with seven. Tied with Balaguert and Vogelbach, two 24-year-olds. Jimenez won't be 20 until late November. Leads the Midwest League in SLG and OPS. Maybe he'll get promoted to the Myrtle Beach squad that visits Woodbridge, VA, in June or Frederick, MD, in August.
Watched two Pelican games at Frederick the other week. Was most impressed by Stinnett and Happ. Happ may swing harder than Javier Baez, though more compactly. (Also got to see Brockmeyer hit a bomb.)
E-MAN: Jose Paniagua isn't a string-bean, but I wouldn't say he necessarily bulked-up during the 2015-16 off-season either, He led the DSL Cubs in HR and doubles in 2014, and he showed XBH power when he arrived in Mesa last year, leading the AZL Cubs in HR, doubles, and RBI in 2015. It's just that he has taken his HR power to a new level this year.
Paniagua displayed plus-HR power in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games in March, and that got him a slot on the South Bend Opening Day roster. But he was sent to EXST after only six MWL games.
More on the Cub Way.
Martinez is one of my least favorite pitchers in baseball. I'd love to see a game like yesterday's against him.
Send Soler down!
Awesome thanks AZ
Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.
Ben Zobrist is very enjoyable to watch!!!!!!
given that he seems to only be throwing low 90s these days rather than the 93-96mph he used to throw, along with his wildness issues this year, he may end up passing through.
i dunno if something is wrong with him physically or his past shoulder issues has rendered him what he currently is, but he's been throwing a lot of sliders he can't control well and his fastball isn't as sharp. even when his slider wasn't working in a game he was still throwing a lot of them.
Any scuttlebutt on where Neil Ramirez gets traded?
He seems better than some of the relievers on competitive teams. He ought to bring more than the waiver fee.
My guess? Toronto.
PHIL: It seems as if Paniagua has always played 1B with the Cubs. At 6'2 and 180#, what is his frame like? String bean? Have you seen him bulk up? Where do you project him? Thanks.
Phil, what's your thoughts on which position players are going to Eugene and who is staying in AZL?
Ahhh...way to bring me down BB.
Still - a win tomorrow will be an acheivement regardless.
Don't mean to spoil your mood, but with tonight's win the are 3-5 on the trip with one to play.
While I'm bringing the room down -- Richard comes in to pitch the 9th with a 12-1 lead...and can't finish the game. Woof.
For some reason
It is remarkable how my mood has become uplifted with one game against the Cards.
That is sick.
But, I have been an addict for a long time.
A W tomorrow and it will be a .500 road trip.
Also, to keep the losses in perspective, if the Cubs were to lose 10 games a month - a lot at this current pace - they still end up 102-60. Six months of the ride!
So, the Mesa Cubs should be solid this summer in the AZL Rookie League?
And, I like the, "But did you know" lead in there. Something a little different.
I can tell really like this group of hitters in AZ right now.
What pitchers out there, other than Cease, should we be excited about?
Thanks as always for the info.