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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  • it's day old news, and it's got nothing to do with the cubs, but ichiro signed a $2m deal with MIA (with a $2m option for 2017).

    neat. 41 years old and damn close to 3000 hits.

    also, rain delays suck.

  • take that giants

  • I think that if a team objects to the 1-game wildcard playin game so much, they could just win the pennant and avoid themselves the trouble.

  • Per Jesse Sanchez at, Cubs reportedly have signed 20-year old Cuban OF Eddy Julio Martinez for $3M bonus. 

  • BLOCK: Of course any advantage is an advantage. An MLB, NBA, or NHL team getting the extra game at home in a seven game series is an advantage, I just don't think it is enough of an advantage for winning a division and/or having the best record in a conference or league over the course of an 82-game season (NBA and NHL) or 162 game series (MLB).

  • TEX takes the opening game from TOR (@TOR) 5-3.

    TOR lost bautista + donaldson in-game due to injuries...TEX lost beltre...dunno if any will be lingering issues leading to missed games.

  • Ride the Kid Magic! Schwarber hadn't homered in a long time before last night.

  • Greg Maddux was 8-18 in his rookie season. Kyle has the 8 wins down pat.

    Think Baby Maddux.

    Prof. Harold Hill's THINK system at work.

    Kyle is on the far left.

  • I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.

  • Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.

  • That was good!

  • Well said. On one hand, I thought the HBP was a bad baseball play -- down 4 runs, put a runner on for a red-hot Fowler. On the other hand, they needed to do something -- I hadn't thought about the warning/pitching inside point. Is Hurdle that smart? He does not strike me that way. By the way -- not clear which fan base you are referring to in your "first" 3rd point.

  • My unsolicited opinions on topics covered in this thread:
    1. I hate the fact that after 162 games, a team could be out after 1 game. However, I think the system is pretty close to perfect right now. 2 of 3 isn't feasible unless they shorten the regular season, and it ices the division winners for way too long. This creates excitement, and rewards the division winners.

  • Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.

  • Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.

    How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?

    Call me lost.

  • Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.