PCL Honors to Cashner; Dodgers to Wrigley

-- The I-Cubs' Andrew Cashner was named PCL Pitcher of the Week. That's what winning two starts while allowing one run and just eight hits over 13 innings will do for you. And let's not forget: he won the second of those games while dealing with the pressure of having TCR's very own Mike Wellman in the stands.

-- The Giants fan site, 22gigantes, pointed me to an mlb.com article in which the 30 MLB clubs were ranked for drafting success, based on All-Star appearances, Cy Young Awards, etc., won by their draftees in recent years. Cub draftees earned six such awards—four All-Star appearances plus ROY Awards for Kerry Wood and Geovany Soto—which tied the team for 11th place with the Giants, Marlins, and Cardinals.

(I'm a bit confused here since the article says the numbers are based on "awards won by players drafted by teams over the past decade." Wood was drafted in 1995 and won the ROY in 1998. ???)

The Nationals and Red Sox (17 player awards) led the way. Among other NL Central teams, the Brewers (10) were tied for 4th place. The Pirates, Astros, and Reds were all down near the bottom.

The same article offers a different calculation of drafting success based on a variety of individual player stats accumulated by draftees. By that figuring, the Athletics, Diamondbacks, and Red Sox lead the way. The Cubs are not in the top 10.

--By all accounts, Carlos Zambrano's simulated game, consisting of 73 pitches Monday at Wrigley Field, went well, and the plan is for him to return to the rotation on the road, i.e., sometime on or after next Monday, when the Cubs begin a nine-game trip in Pittsburgh. 

-- After taking three of five against two first-place clubs on the road, the Cubs continue to match up with the big boys, as the red-hot Dodgers, winners of 12 of 14 and owners of an MLB-best record of 16-5 in May, come to Wrigley for a three-game series beginning tonight.

Aramis Ramirez will be rested for a few days because of a bone bruise on his left hand. (An MRI and x-rays concluded there was no fracture.) Lou says that moving Ramirez to the DL is not currently a consideration. (Had the link and lost it, but that's what he said.)

Comments

-By all accounts, Carlos Zambrano's simulated game, consisting of 73 pitches Monday at Wrigley Field, went well...

So did he get out of the 3rd inning?

("went well" is relative but it's gotta be better than his 49 pitches on opening day)

Could a simulated game thrown by anybody offer more comic potential than one thrown by Z? I guess the press has given up asking Lou how they're going to make room in the rotation for him. Waiting for a trade? Waiting to announce that Gorzelanny will need some time off? Divine intervention?

Also meant to note that Homer Bailey has landed on the Disabled List.

http://bit.ly/9ath3J

I vote for a 6-man rotation with Z, Dempster, maybe Wells going every 5 days regardless and the others getting an extra day or two of rest. Silva seems to have some aches and pains, Lilly could probably use a day off on occasion and Gorz could go 120 to get through 6 innings and be less worried about his arm.

Or trade Silva while his value his high.

trade him to dc for strasbourg.

/steve phillips agrees

Or trade Silva while his value his high.

That's a good idea, but I'm guessing not too many GMs will be fooled.

I hear the Reds need a starter.

The thing is, we're paying Silva a lot of money, so we would have to throw money in to get rid of him - something Ricketts said he is against.

Cubs aren't actually on the hook for that much and they probably wouldn't get much in return, but you never know.

problem is most teams are still figuring how far they want to go for it this season.

the other problem is he's Carlos Silva. I suppose Wells or Lilly could be traded easier. I'd like to keep Wells cause he's gonna be cheap for another 2 seasons, but you'd get teams that are already out of it interested as he's more of a long-term investment. Teams are always looking for lefty starters and I can't imagine Lilly is going to be resigned.

Dempster or Wells to the pen is the other desperate option I guess.

The one time the Cubs need pitchers to get hurt, they all stay healthy.

silva in may has been looking a lot like silva 2008, imo.

last 3 starts have been okay, no one believes he's the 6-0 ace that he's impersonating.

Throw ball, ball gets hits, hope it finds a glove. 54 hits off him this year, 7 for HR's, but just 6 for 2b's and 3b's and he doesn't walk anyone.

Hasn't topped 100 pitches yet this year, should be in the 4-4.5 ERA range when it's all said and done.

yeah, his numbers look a lot worse than his play, f'sure.

a guy like him should be able to put in more than 5-6ip, though. speaking of...the guy seems to be just fine so far through his first couple innings...a trip to the pen for him might not be that radical of an idea even though it seems lou/hendry don't have that as an option last time they were asked about it.

"Hasn't topped 100 pitches yet this year, should be in the 4-4.5 ERA range when it's all said and done."

i'd be a little careful with that one...he's showing signs of being hit like he was when he was having "problems."

http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20100...

Cubs must not have had a lot of home games or something as Soriano is the only one in the top 5 or 15 at #11. I'd expect Soto to be at least in the top 5.

I think the voting started last Monday - so 2 or 3 games.

balloting started on April 19th, but the results aren't in real-time. I believe the results released yesterday and today run through some time last week.

(I'm a bit confused here since the article says the numbers are based on "awards won by players drafted by teams over the past decade." Wood was drafted in 1995 and won the ROY in 1998. ???)

I think it's Jonathan Mayo who's confused, not you. That article is kind of a mash.

Besides Willis, Prior (who did not play) and Soto, who is the 4th Cub drafted between 2000-2009 who was an All Star? Is he mistakenly including Kerry Wood again? And, although they didn't sign him, the Cubs drafted Khalil Greene who later was ROY in 2004.

So it's even more messed up than I thought. And not clear if Cubs would have gotten credit for Greene's ROY.

Thanks for validating my confusion.

If it's from 2000-2009 it's sort of a stupid range anyway - how many guys were all-stars or RoY's from the 2009 draft class?

Catcher defense

http://www.beyondtheboxscore.com/2010/5/25/14...

Cubnut linked to it on twitter, if you take out the scrubs and back-ups I get Soto at 10th out of 22 regulars with at least 1000 PA's.

I didn't even look at the methodology but Soto does appear to be much better this year now that he's not fat.

yeah, cashner got my vote! as for zorro's sim-game yesterday, 'the heckler' says...

Zambrano kicked out of simulated game for arguing balls and strikes with pitching coach
Rothschild loses patience with fiery slugger

I think the Zambrano sim game ended with Zambrano hitting back to back jacks off his last two sinkers. The last time that was accomplished was by...

here's video of Z's simulated session:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gj-WSKhVoXw

#cubs lineup tue nite 2b riot, ss castro, 1b lee, cf byrd, lf sori, rf nady, 3b baker, c soto, p dempster

vs.

Furcal 6, Martin 2, Kemp 8, Ramirez 7, Loney 3, Blake 5, Paul 9, DeWitt 4, Kershaw 1

So what happens if Dempster goes into Lous office and tells him
that he would go to the pen.

There is no way the cubs stick with 4 lefties in pen if Gorzelany
is the chosen one.

Poor Lee Smith, that 7th inning stretch was awkward and painful.

That was Lee Smith? I couldn't figure out who he was - he's not too fat. I thought he was a football player.

Demp's 10th start on the season - glad to see him kick into 5th gear. Cubs only 2-7 in his starts prior to tonights gem, with the 2 wins coming with Silva-like run support (8 and 9 runs).

Recent comments

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  • I think Javy is learning--but he's learning to make contact, not learning to lay off pitches out of the zone. A quick glance at his plate discipline numbers on Fangraphs shows that his contact rate is up, especially his contact rate out of the zone, but his swing rate is up too, especially his swing rate out of the zone.

    Charlie 7 min 15 sec ago view
  • I definitely saw ballpark radar guns go up to 102 on Kerry Wood back when he was still a starter, but who knows how accurate they were.

    Charlie 20 min 42 sec ago view
  • They've mentioned Henry Rodriguez (2013), Chris Carpenter, and Andrew Cashner as Cubs who have gone 100+. They said Rodriguez was tops at 100.8. Who knows before 2008?

    QuietMan 1 hour 44 min ago view
  • Regarding Heyward--

    He'll play regardless of what he does, just like Soriano played for seven years before they finally ditched him.

    What can they do? All I can think of is they can keep hiring and firing hitting coaches until they find one who can get him to stop hitting balls with the handle of the bat.

    (All those broken bats added to his paycheck is just a bit much.)

    VirginiaPhil 1 hour 45 min ago view
  • Lester will probably be all right.

    I think Arrieta might have added too much muscle preparing for that butt-naked ESPN photo shoot. Pitchers are supposed to be loose, not muscled up.

    Seriously.

    VirginiaPhil 1 hour 51 min ago view
  • I have basically written off Heyward for this year -- if you are working on major swing changes in late July, you are going to struggle. Hopefully, he can be more productive at the plate next year. It will be interesting to see what they do with him if the Cardinals keep winning and close the gap. Heyward is dead last in the NL in slugging and in the bottom 5 in OPS -- yet still has a positive WAR. Hunh.

    billybucks 1 hour 55 min ago view
  • Has anybody in a Cub uniform ever thrown a ball 103 before?

    VirginiaPhil 1 hour 58 min ago view
  • He certainly looks better, no doubt, and is a different player than what we saw when he first came up. Full credit to him for changing his approach and saving his career.

    But he has zero walks in 35AB since the break, and 10 in 251 AB all year. He does seem to be able to hit some pitches out of the zone, but, a guy with his pop should be drawing more walks. However, it's easy to forget he is still only 23, and probably trying to make an impact to prove he should be an everyday player.

    billybucks 2 hours 7 min ago view
  • The usual suspects, Molina and Wong. Gyorko drew a walk with two outs, none on. I recall us (particularly Szczur and Bryant) swinging at everything Familia threw.

    VirginiaPhil 2 hours 9 min ago view
  • Yup. Thanks Q

    The E-Man 2 hours 15 min ago view
  • QuietMan 2 hours 23 min ago view
  • I for one hope that Sosa comes back soon.

    Rob Richardson 2 hours 42 min ago view
  • O/B interesting you should mention that. Google ESPN Science Aroldis Chapman and you'll be treated to how his mechanics and delivery are possibly historic. It's the 120% of his body stretch plus the torque. They compare him to the Unit and NRyan.

    The E-Man 3 hours 20 min ago view
  • Amazing how much lower the production gets when Bryant runs into a mini-cold streak. He doesn't stay cold for long. If just one of Zobrist or, gulp, Heyward, gets hot, they oughta have one more really nice winning streak in them. Having a closer that you have absolute confidence in can't hurt.

    Old and Blue 4 hours 5 min ago view
  • I hope they hold onto Jimenez. Outfield depth is questionable, especially with McKinney, who struggled this year but still, gone.

    Old and Blue 4 hours 16 min ago view
  • You don't think he's improved? He looks completely different out there than he did when he first came up. The last I checked his K rate was in the low 20% range - 22-23 or so. When he came up it was 40%+.

    To me, what is scary about him if I'm the other guy is that he IS learning the strike zone. This guy could easily be the MVP someday.

    Old and Blue 4 hours 17 min ago view