Angels Withstand Cub Comeback at Extended Spring Training
Runey Davis reached base three times, scored two runs, knocked-in another, and stole a base, but the EXST Angels scored two runs in the 8th to take the lead after the EXST Cubs had clawed their way back from a 6-0 deficit to tie the game in the 6th, and held-on to defeat the Cubs 8-6 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa this morning.
With two hits today, Davis raised his EXST batting average to .353 (.450 OBP), and with his speed and the ability to play all three OF positions, I would think Davis (the Cubs 2009 12th round pick out of JUCO World Series champion Howard JC) is a strong candidate to get promoted to Peoria.
RHP Eduardo Figueroa got the start today for the Cubs and had a very poor outing, allowing six runs (four earned) on six hits and two walks (plus a WP) in just 1.0+ IP. But RHP Yohan Gonzalez threw three innings of shutout relief (lowering his ERA to 1.29 and his WHIP to 0.86) and RHP Jadel Mendez followed Gonzo with two innings of shutout relief to keep the Cubs in the game. Mendez allowed three hits in his two innings of work, inducing two timely double plays to get out of jams.
EXST Cubs co-closer Rogelio Carmona entered the game with the score tied, and picked-up the loss after allowing two runs on a double, a triple, and two walks.
2009 5th round draft pick Wes Darvill (Langley, BC) committed his team-leading 5th error (two errors so far at SS, and three at 2B), leading to two unearned runs (although he did go 1-3 to raise his BA to .200), and Jae-Hoon Ha was charged with his 5th Passed Ball. (Ha was a catcher in HS in Korea, then was moved to RF after he signed with the Cubs in 2008, and then was moved back to catcher last September in the AZ Instructional League)
Here is today’s abridged box score (EXST Cubs players only):
1. Arismendy Alcantara, SS: 0-3 (F-9, BB, 5-3, K, R, SB)
2. Vismeldy Bieneme, DH-2B: 0-3 (K, BB, K, 4-3, R)
3. Jesus Morelli, RF: 1-4 (L-9, 2B, 1-3, F-7, RBI)
4. Brandon May, 1B: 0-2 (BB, L-8 SF, K, 4-3, R, RBI)
5. Charles Thomas, 3B: 1-4 (E-6, 3-U, 1-3, 1B)
6. Jae-Hoon Ha, DH-C: 1-4 (4-6-3 GIDP, 1B, F-7, 6-4-3 GIDP, PO)
7. Runey Davis, CF: 2-2 (1B, BB, 1B, 2 R, RBI, SB, CS)
8a. Carlos Romero, C: 1-2 (1B, 1-3, RBI)
8b. Bobby Wagner, PH: 0-0 (BB, R)
9. Wes Darvill, 2B-DH: 1-3 (1B, E-6, 6-3)
10a. Cody Shields, LF: 1-2 (1B, F-9, PO)
10b. Albert Hernandez, LF: 0-1 (K)
1. Eduardo Figueroa – 1.0 IP, 6 H, 6 R (4 ER), 2 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 1/2 GO/FO, 48 pitches (26 strikes)
2. Yohan Gonzalez – 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 GIDP, 3/4 GO/FO, 46 pitches (27 strikes)
3. Jadel Mendez – 2.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 2 GIDP, 5/1 GO/FO, 23 pitches (14 strikes)
4. Rogelio Carmona – 2.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 3 K, 43 pitches (27 strikes)
2B Wes Darvill E-4 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base and runner on 1st base to advance to 3rd base – both subsequently scored unearned runs)
Carlos Romero: 0-1 CS
Jae-Hoon Ha: 0-1 CS, 1 PB
WEATHER: Partly cloudy and VERY breezy with winds gusting up to 30 MPH, with temperatures in the 60’s
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "thet never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.
Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.
Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.
There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!
Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.
Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.
Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.
Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.
Baez still learning
heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.
he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.
stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.
that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.
brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.
Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.