Ha Gives Cubs Reason to Smile
Michael Choice and A. J. Kirby-Jones crushed back-to-back home runs to cap a five-run 5th, leading the A’s Split Squad #1 to a 9-3 victory over the Cubs in AZ Instructional League action at Papago Park Baseball Complex Field #2 in Phoenix this afternoon.
Although there wasn’t much to celebrate on the Cubs side of the field, CF Jae-Hoon Ha had a nice day, rapping an RBI single in the top of the 1st before stealing 2nd base and 3rd base, and then scoring on a WP on the steal of 3rd as he came all the way around to score from 2nd without slowing-down, sliding home safely in a bang-bang play at the plate. Ha later made a spectacular diving catch on a hump-backed liner in short center.
17-year old LHP Brian Smith (Cubs 2010 40th round draft pick out of Pickering, Ontario) made his pro debut today, and looked very nervous, allowing two runs in one inning of work, while having a lot of difficulty locating the strike zone (23 pitches, only nine strikes). He also hit a batter, threw a wild pitch, and committed a balk. Smith pitched for the Canadian Junior National Team in 2010.
18-year old RHP Ryan Hartman (Cubs 2010 16th round draft pick out of Mt. Zion HS - Mt. Zion, IL) had an especially poor outing today, allowing five runs on six hits (three singles, a triple, and back-to-back home runs) plus a walk and a wild pitch in his two innings of work. Although he was selected in the 16th round in last June's draft, Hartman received a $150,000 bonus (equivalent to "5th round money") when he signed with the Cubs. He appeared in eight games for the AZL Cubs in 2010, allowing 10 hits in 14.1 IP, with a 5/15 BB/K, 3.77 ERA, and a 1.05 WHIP. He was considered one of the top high school pitching prospects in Illinois coming into the 2010 season, and his curve ball was rated by scouts as the best among Illinois HS hurlers.
Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1a. Marco Hernandez, SS: 2-3 (1B+E5, E6, 1B+E1, R)
1b. Wes Darvill, SS: 0-1 (P-3)
2a. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 0-3 (4-3, 6-4-3 GIDP, E6)
2b. Pin-Chieh Chen, 2B: 0-1 (K)
3. Jae-Hoon Ha, CF: 1-4 (1B, F-7, F-7, L-6, RBI, R, 2 SB)
4. Ryan Cuneo, 1B: 1-3 (K, HBP, 3B, F-7)
5. Xavier Batista, RF: 0-2 (K, E1, HBP, BB, CS)
6. Engel Santana, DH-C: 0-3 (6-3, BB, 4-3 GIDP, F-9)
7a. Willson Contreras, 3B: 0-2 (F-7, L-3 DP)
7b. Dustin Geiger, 3B: 0-0 (BB)
7c. Max Kwan, PH: 0-1 (4-3)
8. Delbis Arcila, LF-DH: 0-2 (HBP, 6-3, K)
9. Sergio Burruel, C-DH: 0-2 (BB, K, 4-3)
10. Oliver Zapata, DH-LF: 2-2 (BB, 1B, 2B, R)
1. Dustin Fitzgerald: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 GIDP, 31 pitches (23 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
2. Brian Smith: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 1 HBP, 1 BALK, 23 pitches (9 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
3. Ryan Hartman: 2.0 IP, 6 H, 5 R (5 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 2 HR, 1 GIDP, 45 pitches (24 strikes), 4/1 GO/FO
4. Luis Liria: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 30 pitches (18 strikes), 5/1 GO/FO
5. Jeff Lorick: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 14 pitches (10 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
6. Cam Greathouse: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 BALK, 1 GIDP, 13 pitches (9 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
1. C Sergio Burruel E-2 (overthrow on stolen base attempt at 2nd base allowed runner to advance to 3rd base)
2. 3B Dustin Geiger: E-5 (dropped tag on run-down play allowed runner to reach 3rd base – eventually scored unearned run)
Sergio Burruel: 0-2 CS, 1 E (see above)
Engel Santana: 0-1 CS, 1 PB
ATTENDANCE: 17 (mostly scouts)
WEATHER: Hot and sunny, with temperatures in the 90’s
2010 CUBS INSTRUCTIONAL LEAGUE ROSTER:
ACTIVE LIST (47):
* bats or throws left
# bats both
* Hunter Ackerman
* Brent Ebinger
* Cam Greathouse
* Casey Harman
* Jeff Lorick
* Brian Smith
Alvaro Sosa (ex-C)
Charles Thomas (ex-3B)
* Sergio Burruel
# Micah Gibbs
# Engel Santana
* Justin Bour
* Ryan Cuneo
* Pin-Chieh Chen
* Wes Darvill
* Marco Hernandez
* Hak-Ju Lee
D. J. Lemahieu
* Logan Watkins
* Delbis Arcila
Chris Huseby (ex-P)
* Kyung-Min Na
# Oliver Zapata
CB Bucknor not having a good day....
Jesse Rogers [email protected] Yeah, there was plenty of chatter before the game about home plate ump today. Knew he would be a factor.
Jake Arrieta gives up first inning run
For the first time in a year, 33 starts.
Old news, sorry if it's 3/44-
J-Hey being classy by repaying an old teammate:
With Paredes moving to 3B, how do you see playing time shaking out between him and Galindo? Do you think Galindo gets starts at 1B? Galindo is more of a prospect than Paniagua, right?
Phil, your knowledge of the Cubs Minor League system is unbelievable.
This kid would be a key piece in a trade for a pitcher, imo.
This might be old news but Hammel was on ESPN 1000 and said that he changed his diet and workout routine over the off season and tweaked his delivery so it'd be more repeatable so he'd have a better second half. So...some cause for optimism anyway.
CHILDERS: RHSP Dylan Cease and LHSP Bryan Hudson are probably the top two SP prospects in the organization right now.
LHSP Jose Paulino has electric stuff (91-94 MPH fastball with sinking action and a mid-80's slider), but he also has trouble commanding it.
RHP Jose Albertos (2015 IFA - Mexico - $1.5M bonus) just turned 17 in November, and his fastball already sits at 95-96. He also throws a curve and a change-up, and is fairly advanced for a kid his age.
AZBOBBOP: Most of 2016 draft picks will get assigned to either Eugene or AZL Cubs, but the Opening Day Eugune roster will probably be almost 100% from the Extended Spring Training squad roster (pending the arrival of draft picks).
I think I can probably tell you which pitchers and players at EXST are in contention for roster slots at Eugene and which are in contention for slots with the AZL Cubs - AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW - (listed alphabetically):
* bats or throws left
# bats both
Eloy Jimenez atop the leader board for minor-league home runs in the Cub system, with seven. Tied with Balaguert and Vogelbach, two 24-year-olds. Jimenez won't be 20 until late November. Leads the Midwest League in SLG and OPS. Maybe he'll get promoted to the Myrtle Beach squad that visits Woodbridge, VA, in June or Frederick, MD, in August.
Watched two Pelican games at Frederick the other week. Was most impressed by Stinnett and Happ. Happ may swing harder than Javier Baez, though more compactly. (Also got to see Brockmeyer hit a bomb.)
E-MAN: Jose Paniagua isn't a string-bean, but I wouldn't say he necessarily bulked-up during the 2015-16 off-season either, He led the DSL Cubs in HR and doubles in 2014, and he showed XBH power when he arrived in Mesa last year, leading the AZL Cubs in HR, doubles, and RBI in 2015. It's just that he has taken his HR power to a new level this year.
Paniagua displayed plus-HR power in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games in March, and that got him a slot on the South Bend Opening Day roster. But he was sent to EXST after only six MWL games.
More on the Cub Way.
Martinez is one of my least favorite pitchers in baseball. I'd love to see a game like yesterday's against him.
Send Soler down!
Awesome thanks AZ
Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.