Cubs Shutout Padres at HoHoKam Water Park
Four pitchers combined to throw a five-hit shutout, and Vismeldy Bieneme reached base four times, stole two bases, and scored three runs, as the AZL Cubs blanked the AZL Padres 3-0 in a game that was played in a steady monsoon drizzle at Dwight Patterson Field at HoHoKam Park in Mesa Tuesday night.
RHP Marcus Hatley (2009 TJS) continued his rehab, throwing two innings (29- pitches - 17 strikes) and allowing two singles.
RHP Hector Mayora faced the minimum nine batters in his three innings of work (he gave up a one-out single in the 5th, but the baserunner was cut-down trying to steal), and RHP Austin Reed (2010 12th round draft pick out of Rancho Cucamonga HS - Rancho Cucamonga, CA) also threw three shutout innings (36 pitches - 23 strikes), allowing a single, a double (a simple pop up misplayed into a hit by RF Xavier Batista), and a HBP while striking out three. Reed has electric stuff but sometimes his mechanics go haywire, although he was mostly spot-on tonight.
6'5 Australian LHP Cody Hams got the final three outs (K, 5-3, K) to record the save, and just in time, too, as the game-long drizzle began to turn into more of a downpour.
2B Vismeldy Bieneme reached base on an E-5, stole 2nd base, advanced to 3rd on a 4-3 ground out, and scored the game's first run in the bottom of the 1st inning on a Ryan Cuneo line-drive RBI single. Bieneme singled with one out in the bottom of the 3rd, moved up on an Anthony Giansanti single and a WP, and then scored when the Padres picked Giansanti off 1st base with two outs, with Bieneme scoring from 3rd before the Pads could put a tag on Giansanti. And then Bieneme singled again in the bottom of the 6th, stole second, advanced to 3rd on a WP, and scored on a Ryan Cuneo F-8 SF. (Cuneo is now 3rd in the AZL in RBI with 21, and Bieneme is 4th in SB with 10).
Recently-signed Cubs 2nd round draft pick RF Reggie Golden was in uniform (wearing #19), but he did not see action in tonight's game.
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "they 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.