Cubs Say No to Winning Record
I think that was the first game I got to watch in its near entirety in about 2 weeks. My apologies for the outcome.
The Good: After Gorzelanny finished his warm-ups, he mowed the Nationals down through 7 innings. The problem was it took him 3 batters into the game to finish loosening up. Geovany Soto went 2/4 and Kosuke Fukudome reached base 3 times, twice on walks to set-up getting stranded by Lee, Byrd and Ramirez. Soto also gunned down two very capable baserunners in Wily Taveras and Justin Maxwell.
The Bad: Gorz is now 0-3 despite a 2.45 ERA and as mentioned, took 3 batters to get going. Those 3 batters included a stand-up triple by Nyjer Morgan to leadoff the game that he hit to left center. I didn't even know that was possible. Then Ian Desmond singled Morgan in, and stole off the lefty Gorz. Christian Guzman launched a ball into centerfield into the teeth of the wind that Marlon Byrd completely lost track of leading to the second triple of the inning. Gorz settled in and stranded Guzman and didn't run into much trouble the rest of the night. The bullpen gave up another run in the 8th, with Grab-Ass being the culprit thanks to his own throwing error. The 3 through 6 hitters went a combined 2/16 including Lee, Byrd and Ramirez all getting a crack with 2 runners on in the bottom of the 8th. Matt 'Could've Been a Cub' Capps nailed down his 9th save in 9 opportunities.
The Minors: Iowa picked up the 4-3 win in a shortened double-header in the first game.. Thomas Diamond throws 5 scoreless with 5 K's and Jeff Samardzija got the win with 1.2 scoreless innings and no walks with a K. Brad Snyder went 2/4 and Sam Fuld got on-base twice out of the leadoff spot. They won 4-2 in the 2nd game with Casey Coleman throwing 6 innings and giving up 2 runs. Mitch Atkins picked up the save in the 7th in that one. The white hot Smokies take a rare loss but Starlin Castro went 3/5 with a double. Ryan Flaherty, who is off to a poor start, did go 1/2 with 2 walks. Daytona won 3-1 with Alberto Cabrera throwing 5.2 scoreless innings with 6 K's. Aaron Shafer extended his scoreless streak to 16 innings in relief. Matt Spencer and Rebel Ridling homered, but B. Jackson, Vitters, LeMahieu and Burke were a combined 0/12. Peoria won 5-4 with Trey McNutt going 5 innings, giving up a run and striking out 5. Larry Suarez threw 2 scoreless innings. Greg Rohan homered and Hak-Ju Lee went 1/4 with a run scored and a double out of the leadoff spot.
Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.
With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.
it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.
It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.
Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.
That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.
I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.
Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...
These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.
No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.
a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...
it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...
Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.
Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.
Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.
soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.
he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.
j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.
so is him actually getting 2 hits in a game (2 doubles!)...first time he's even been on base 2 times in a game since 9 games ago on his 3/4, 1bb day.
im ready for him to at least look like a 2-slot hitter since he's gonna be slotted there no matter what he does.
That Heyward move to avoid Bryant's ball hit at him was a thing of beauty too.
9 pitches in and this game already rules.
HR, double...bryant's turn (who came out to a Kris Kross song for some horrible, horrible reason).
...2 run inning...zoobrest hitting streak at 14.
First time I saw Herrera was yesterday. He took like 100 pitches, fouled off a ton off Lester.
Very nice young player and perfect leadoff guy.
Obviously not Phil. But he mentioned this on Wednesday.
"Dominican Summer League (DSL) Opening Day is Saturday June 4th, so probably about 8-10 pitchers and position players presently at EXST in Mesa will be sent to the Cubs Dominican Academy (probably sometime this week) and be assigned to either DSL Cubs #1 or DSL Cubs #2."
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