Angels Nip Cubs at Diablo Park

Xavier Batista and Blair Springfield each had two hits, a run scored, and an RBI, but the EXST Angels rallied for five runs in the bottom of the 8th to edge the EXST Cubs 7-6 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Diablo Park in Tempe this morning.

Rebel Ridling (appendectomy with complications) once again was a DH, getting five Plate Appearances in the first seven innings. He roped a liner into the LF corner in his first AB (but only managed to get to 1st base), then was called out on strikes in his second PA, before grounding out three times in a row (1-3, 5-3, 5-3) to complete his day at the plate. While he seems to be swinging the bat OK, he also seems to be running a bit gingerly.

2009 3rd round pick LHP Austin Kirk (Owasso HS – Owasso, OK) started the game for the Cubs, and labored through 2.2 IP (54 pitches), allowing two singles, a triple, and two walks (albeit only one run). RHP Tarlandus Mitchell followed and couldn’t find home plate, walking three batters and hitting another one in addition to allowing two singles and a double, but only one run over his 1.2 IP (51 pitches).

20-year old Dominican LHRP Marcos Perez continues to throw strikes, coming into the game today with the bases loaded and getting out of the jam with a strikeout. Perez allowed just a bunt single in 1.1 IP of work (13 pitches – 12 strikes), while striking out three. In three Extended Spring Training appearances so far, Perez has thrown 5.1 IP of shutout ball, allowing just one hit (a bunt single) and no walks, while striking out seven. And he has thrown the 5.1 IP on just 42 pitches, of which 36 were strikes. That in itself will likely catch the eyes of the Cubs Player Development people.

LHP (ex-OF) Drew Rundle pitched one inning, throwing seven balls in a row before finally finding the strike zone, at which point he threw five strikes in a row, getting a strike ‘em out/throw ‘em out DP and a 1-3 comebacker to the mound to get out of the inning unscathed.

But Carlos Rojas had a nightmare from hell outing, allowing five runs on five hits (a single, two triples, and two home runs, plus a HBP) while getting just one out in the 8th, as the 19-year old Venezuelan RHP took the loss.

The game featured one very unusual occurrence. With Charles Thomas on 3rd base and Xavier Batista on 1st and one out in the 7th, Melvin Camarena hit a pop up behind home plate that the Angels catcher caught near the screen. But seeing that the Angels pitcher was just standing on the mound watching, an alert Thomas broke for home plate and scored on what was a sacrifice fly to the catcher! (And then Batista quietly tippy-toed into 2nd base while the Angels stood around trying !o figure out what just happened).

On the EXST injury front, Manuel Pestana left the game after jamming his right shoulder while sliding head-first into a base in the top of the 2nd inning.

In EXST Cubs roster news, RHP Chris Carpenter (sore shoulder) has completed his rehab assignment at Fitch Park and has rejoined AA Tennessee after pitching in only one Extended Spring Trauining game (1.2 IP last Friday).

Here is today’s abridged box score (EXST Cubs players only):

NOTE: DH #1 Rebel Ridling batted in five of the first seven innings, getting five Plate Appearances total in the game.

X. Rebel Ridling, DH #1: 1-5 (1B, K, 1-3, 5-3, 5-3)
1. Kyung-Min Na, CF: 1-3 (P-5, F-9, 1B, BB, CS, R)
2. Arismendy Alcantara, SS: 1-4 (F-7, 4-3, K, 2B, R, 2 RBI)
3. Charles Thomas, 1B: 1-3 (5-3, 5-3, BB, 1B, 2 R, RBI)
4a. Sergio Burruel, C: 0-2 (F-7, 1-3)
4b. Jose Guevara, C: 0-1 (BB, K)
5a. Manuel Pestana, LF: 1-1 (2B)
5b. Xavier Batista, LF: 2-3 (2B, 6-4 FC, 1B, R, RBI)
6. Melvin Camarena, RF: 0-3 (5-3, K, P-2 SF, K, RBI)
7. Ping-Chieh Chen, 2B-DH: 0-3 (4-3, 4-3, L-8)
8. Blair Springfield, DH-2B: 2-3 (K, 1B, 1B, R, RBI)
9. Vismeldy Bieneme, 3B: 0-3 (1-3, 6-3, K)

1. Austin Kirk – 2.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 1 K, 1/6 GO/FO, 54 pitches (33 strikes)
2. Tarlandus Mitchell – 1.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 3 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP, 2/2 GO/FO, 51 pitches (24 strikes)
3. Marcos Perez – 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 1/0 GO/FO, 13 pitches (12 strikes)
4. Drew Rundle – 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GO/FO, 12 pitches (5 strikes)
5. Carlos Rojas – 0.1 IP, 6 H, 5 R (5 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 1 HBP, 2 HR, 1/0 GO/FO, 35 pitches (21 strikes)

P Marcos Perez E-1 (overthrow at 1st base on bunt single allowed batter-runner to move up to 2nd base)

Sergio Burruel – 0-1 CS
Jose Guevara – 1-1 CS


WEATHER: Sunny & very breezy, with temperatures in the 80’s.


time to start speculating on where Lee or Lilly will get traded?

too soon?

I've feared this for a long time. What type of package do you think we could get for them? I assume not a ton, but maybe a top twenty prospect or two from each. Lee probably better value than Lilly at this point, right? Just looking for thoughts

Len: Let's see... Cubs had no runs on... three hits? That's all we got, three goddamn hits?

Bob: You can't say goddamn on the air!

Len: Ah, don't worry, nobody's watching anyway!

Rosenthal says Bradon Looper as a Cub?

Here we go loop de loop
Here we go loop de lie
Here we go loop de loop
All on a Saturday night

What the hell is the National Institutes of Health doing posting lyrics to children's songs? WTF is this? The F-ing Barney show? Not with MY damn tax dollars!

Funny I should ask this. Evidently, I was not the only one. Check out this section on their website with the heading,

"So why do we include a Sing-Along section?
How is that "educationally" relevant?"

I am slightly more encouraged tonight than probably the rest of the Cub world (probably because I started Pelfry on my fantasy team tonight, it has me in a good mood). Soriano is making some decent contact and looking like he might come alive at any moment. Maybe.

Zambrano was lights out except for one inning.

Fontenot looked far worse on the basepaths than he did at SS. It's easy to criticize poor baserunning, but let's not forget that certain people on this team are not on base enough to screw up running on the basepaths.

@ BOS...


Hello ledge.

adding injury to insult?

Bradley leaves after one inning, left calf strain.

Az Phil:

Have you seen Huseby throw a side session since he returned to Fitch? Just wondering if he is back not being able to hit the broad side of a barn again.

Aramis Ramirez does not look injured to me, just based on how hard he's swinging. I mean he's not holding anything back. I don't recall him going into deep slumps like this before, except when he first came back from that shoulder detachment thing. Can someone refresh my memory, is he a streak hitter?

I could probably Google for an answer, but someone here probably knows. Also, I quit searching the Internet ever since I Googled 'delicious muffin tops' in an effort to improve my muffin recipe.

You have to go back to 2006 to find Ramirez struggling (.197 BA) in April, but he ended that season with his best HR (38) and RBI (119) totals ever.

'"He's a go," manager Lou Piniella said Tuesday.

Piniella said he's leaning toward Saturday, but won't make a decision until Wednesday. Lilly pitched seven innings Monday at Class-A Peoria and was 1-0 with a 1.64 ERA in two rehab starts, striking out 13 in 11 innings.'

Castro was 2-4 with a double and a HR last night - he's hitting .380 .396 .620 with 4 SB's and 12 RBI's batting #2 for the Smokies. I think it's time for a promotion to AAA. Chris Carpenter made the start for Knoxville last night - 3 innings, 1 run.

Yah! Let's move him up to the AAA Chicago Cubs.


Thomas Diamond also pitched 6 innings and gave up only 1 earned run. His 3 BB to 4 Ks were nothing special, but overall he's been very solid going all the way back to spring training. He's got to be in the bullpen picture, right?

I am hearing that Jim Hendry is looking to make a deal to boost the struggling Cubs. Not a minor move but looking much bigger than that.

Braden Looper is 6'4" 235 lbs. That's bigger.


Aram,Dlee, Soriano and Z for Arod and Texiera


Recent comments

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  • James Russell elected free agency.

  • based on what SF has been doing every other year lately, getting access to the postseason playoffs seems to be what's important. bring on dat short series!

    that said, skipping the sudden death 1-game WC would be nice from here on out.

  • I know what you are saying, but I feel compelled to point out that there's no such thing as luck, curses, etc. The Cubs this year have as good as a chance as the Pirates to move on to the next round. If the Cubs proceed to the next round or not tomorrow, it will not be because of luck, but because one team outlasted the other. When/if the Cubs are lucky enough to make it to the league series, that's where they may find their biggest challenge. The Dodgers have a good, deep pitching staff.

  • debuting the new format 1 game "sudden death" WC matchup at yankee stadium does a perfect job of showing the intense emotion and drama this game can be.

    that said, i'm ready to not see yankee stadium or hear fans at yankee stadium for another 5 and 1/2 months. at least i don't have to sit through the braves with their "tommy hawk chawp" this postseason.

  • i'd like to know why the internet radio feed of the game (which is always delayed by a few seconds at best) is almost a minute faster than the ESPN cable TV coverage. wtf?

  • i dont know what order they'll be in, but i pretty much expect fowler/schwarb/rizzo/bryant/montero/castro/lastella/arrieta. any change at all (aside from the first 4 guys) wouldn't shock me, though. coghlan is still a wildcard in the lineup joe could always march d.ross out there with very slow arrieta pitching.

  • Yup. Have to agree. Baseball, like golf, certainly has that psych component for the player. There is no real reason why a fielding position should affect a batting average. The Cubs are 106 years over due for a little luck. Don't you guys think so? Maybe the rookies can bring some dumb luck on.

  • probably stacking capable lefties vs cole while keeping the "hot" castro in the game. fwiw, he's 1-6 lifetime with 0 bb/k vs cole (double).

    i chalk bryant's issues at the plate while playing OF up to coincidence so far.

  • I will call your dead horse, "Trigger".

    In one game, when anything is possble, I am glad that Joe Maddon is our Manager.

    He knows the stats better than all of us. It would seem, IF La Stella gets the start at 3B, it will be only up to the point that they were to get the lead (crosses fingers). From everything I have read, the game will be managed like a hoops game: offense/defense. So expect La Stella to be out of the game by the 5th. This team is incredibly deep which is so surprising. We never woulda thunk it.

  • i don't know what their roster plans are, but j.herrera is out there practicing with the team.

    i can't imagine him making any roster, though. dude had 4 PA the entire month of sept. him being a good dude to be around while keeping the clubhouse loose seems to be his main role at this point.

  • I know it's my own personal dead horse to beat --but Bryant has been a lousy hitter when playing the OF this year. Given that it's his first playoff game, I really hope they keep him in his natural position and don't mess with his routine.

    Lousy as in 8-for-45 with one XBH and no HR. Small sample and all that -- but why take the chance?

  • hard to tell what's up given they'll probably want to stack as many good lefties into the lineup as possible.

    castro being a bit hot doesn't help things. if he was still cool they'd probably stick la stella at 2nd and call it a day.

  • Madden won't announce lineups but Stella is practicing at 3rd and Bryant in LF today. I'd rather see Bryant at 3rd but I guess Stella has been hotter than Coghlan.

    /edit. Though I guess they could be practicing this with the idea Stella would come in as a PH then double switch him to 3rd base and Bryant to LF. Hope that's the plan instead

  • I really like the sound of that idea about expanding the AFL to ten teams. Each org. gets to field more players.
    They should do that anyway, regardless of Adv. Instructs.

  • Dallas Beeler, Corey Black, David Garner, Pierce Johnson, Steve Perakslis, James Pugliese, Duane Underwood Jr, and Rob Zastryzny threw early-morning bullpen side-sessions at Riverview yesterday.  

    Underwood threw last, and received specific one-on-one instruction from pitching coach Mike Mason. 

  • HAGSAG: There are only five advanced instructs squads left, and presently the only "co-op" team operating is the Angels/Cubs.

    The league was originally established as a "parallel" league to the AFL (a sort of "junior AFL"), for players too advanced for traditional ("basic") instructs but who were unable to get placed on AFL rosters due to AFL player-limits.