Cubs Score with Small Ball

Evan Crawford singled twice, stole a base, and scored a run, and Justin Bour reached base three times on two singles and a HBP, leading the Cubs to a 2-1 victory over the A’s Split Squad #1 in AZ Instructional League action this afternoon at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa.  


Trailing after a Michael Spina solo home run gave the A's a 1-0 lead in the top of the 1st, the Cubs scored their first run in the bottom of the 1st inning when lead-off man Evan Crawford (acquired from the Giants in the Mike Fontenot deal) reached base on an infield single to deep short, stole 2nd , advanced to 3rd on a Logan Watkins sacrifice bunt, and scored on an Engel Santana sacrifice fly.


The Cubs scored what proved to be the winning run in the bottom of the 7th. Justin Bour was hit by a pitch leading off the inning, and moved-up to 2nd base on a wild pitch. Oliver Zapata was sent-in to pinch run for Bour at this point, and Zapata advanced to 3rd on an errant pick-off throw by the A’s pitcher, and then scored on a passed ball.


Closer Kevin Rhoderick (2010 9th round pick out of Oregon State) pitched out of a one-out & bases loaded jam (of his own making) in the top of the 9th, getting a strikeout and an infield pop up to end the game.


Cubs 2010 2nd round pick Reggie Golden left the game with what appeared to be either lower back spasms or a right oblique strain.


18-year old Korean bonus baby RHP Jin-Yeong Kim threw off the mound today and looks to be ready to maybe get one more outing before Instructs concludes on Saturday. Kim left his last start with a leg injury.


Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):


LINEUP:
1. Evan Crawford, CF: 2-4 (1B, F-9, E5, 1B, R, SB)
2. Logan Watkins, DH #1: 0-2 (1-3 SH, 3-1, 6-4 FC)
3a. Engel Santana, C: 0-2 (F-7 SF, 3-U, 4-3, RBI)
3b. Max Kwan, C: NO AB
4a. Justin Bour, 1B: 2-2 (1B, 1B, HBP)
4b. Oliver Zapata, PR-RF: NO AB (R)
5. Dustin Geiger, 3B: 0-3 (3-U, K, K)
6a. Reggie Golden, RF: 1-3 (6-3, 1B, K)
6b. Ryan Cuneo, 1B: NO AB
7. Micah Gibbs, DH #2: 0-3 (4-3, 4-6 FC, 6-3)
8. Marco Hernandez, SS: 0-3 (6-3, K, 6-3)
9. Chris Huseby, LF: 0-3 (1-3, K, 6-3)
10. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 1-3 (F-9, 6-3, 2B)


PITCHERS:
1. Jeff Lorick: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 43 pitches (27 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO
2. Jhon Rodriguez: 2.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 2 K, 1 PO, 40 pitches (21 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
3. Luis Liria: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 33 pitches (21 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
4. Casey Harman: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 PO, 13 pitches (9 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
5. Kevin Rhoderick: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 23 pitches (15 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO


ERRORS: NONE


CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Engel Santana: 1-1 CS


=================================================


ATTENDANCE: 17


WEATHER: Sunny & breezy, with temperatures in the 90’s


 

Comments

Bruce Levine's Tuesday chat log: Not much newsworthy but there isn't much news.

http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/chicago/chat/...

Q: Has Melvin be eliminated? Is it down to Wedge, Ryno and Quade? Also, any other teams seeking permission to talk to Quade?

Bruce Levine: Melvin hasn't been officially eliminated. Although it's unclear whether he will talk to Ricketts or not. One team asked the Cubs informally whether Quade was going to be available to interview elsewhere. For a team to interview another team's employee that has to go through a written form that goes through major league baseball. That hasn't happened.

Bruce Levine: It should be a busy week with regards to the Cubs' managerial search -- it could happen soon.

hope it really is over soon. seems like everyone up for it is worth getting the job. i just hope they don't pay them 3-4m a year to do it if they're already looking to cut into the team payroll.

i'm ready for some trade and FA action...and seeing what the payroll actually is come march/april.

>>i'm ready for some trade and FA action.<<

1. Dump Fuku. Play Colvin everyday for 2011.
2. Fat Elvis for 1B? Dunn is too expensive.
3. Kerry Wood The Sequel, to be the setup man? Would be a nice story at least.
4. Put Cashner and Marshall in the rotation where they belong.
5. Package a couple of the surplus pitchers for some bench help.
6. Move Silva if you can, but not the end of the world if the Cubs must keep him as a #5.
7. If Aramis wants to walk, by all means let him. Since Beltre is the only quality FA 3B available this year, Aramis might calculate that he'd do better with a 3-yearish type deal now, but at less $/year, than he'd do with his $14MM Cubs windfall in 2011 and then who knows what he gets in 2012.
8. Please, no more Koyie Hill. Please.

Aramis won't get anywhere near $14.6 on the open market, that much is clear. The thing is, he's healthy and not getting any younger. If I am Aramis, I seriously consider locking into one more long-term contract this off season. I don't see it happening, though. Guys generally don't turn down 14.6 million dollars. It's just a rule of thumb.

As for the Cubs: f' the bats. Baseball has become a pitchers and defense game, moreso this year than in the past (Just ask Bobby Cox). Find some hispanic middle infielders that hit .260, etc, etc. Screw Silva, get some real pitching. And for god's sake do something with the bullpen this year. Seriously, it's okay to get a couple veteran relievers.

Explanation:

All hispanic middle infielders that hit .260 are superb fielders. It's a fact.

Call me crazy, but I think I'd prefer the Utley/Cano type at second, and to continue to allow Castro to bat .300.

Ronny Cedeno hit .256 this season (256/293/382).

Would 4 more points on his batting average make him a superb fielder?

Then clearly he's not hispanic.

it's okay to get a couple veteran relievers.
---
somewhere Bobby Howry, Scott Eyre and Dave Veres are laughing...and Kyle Farnsworth just kicked another fan.

...and a puppy.

(Loves me some Farns)

Baseball has become a pitchers and defense game

One year doesn't make a trend.

Pitching-defense has always been the best way to build a solid team. It's only become more so this year.

By the way... the four AL playoff teams were all in the top 5 in the league in runs. Three of the NL playoff teams were in the top 5 in runs.

If you can't score runs, you probably aren't going to the playoffs. Of course, you also have to be able to pitch (4 AL, 4 NL playoff teams were in top 7 in ERA in their leagues) and play defense, but offense is still very important.

By the way also...the four teams left standing now each have at least one "Ace" pitcher on their staff.

In the PLayoffs, pitching has been shown time and again, to be the difference maker.

the four teams left standing now each have at least one "Ace" pitcher on their staff.

Yup... and so did the...

Cardinals
Mets
Mariners
Red Sox
Tigers
Royals
A's
Marlins
Mets
Astros (for most of the year)
Sox (arguably)

In order to win, you have to be able to score runs AND prevent runs. One or the other won't typically get you very far.

None of the above, THIS year, have #1's that equal the quality of Halliday, Lincicum, CLee, and CC.

Sorry, I am not biting.

Astros??

Sox???

None of the above, THIS year, have #1's that equal the quality of Halliday, Lincicum, CLee, and CC.

That is absolutely false. Ever heard of Felix Hernandez? Verlander? Greinke? Santana? Josh Johnson? Trevor Cahill? Jon Lester? Wainright?

They are ALL in the same category, if not better, than Halliday/Lincecum/Lee/CC.

Astros had Oswalt. Sox have Danks. I'll give you that both are a bit of a stretch, but aren't that far from that top tier.

Astros had Oswalt. Sox have Danks. I'll give you that both are a bit of a stretch, but aren't that far from that top tier.

Baloney. Danks: 15-11, 3.72 ERA? An ACE of the caliber of Halliday? Put the bong down dude!

Oswalt, was not great with the Astros this year, or last. Look it up. Again, he is on the downside of his career based on this - however, looks to be rejuvinated with the Phillies.

And even still - if you are considering him a true "Ace" now - then even better for the Phillies. Although the Phillies will not be starting him in the NLCS. Just the best pitcher in baseball.

BTW - I looked at the last ten years of Cy Young winners. While Grieneke and Santana made the list, funny I did not see any of your other guys.

Halladay, CC, Lincicum (twice), and CLee (going 22-3) are all former winners and all perform similarly.

John Lester in his first year? As good as my four guys. Horseshit.

Verlander, Career: 3.81/1.259/2.73 Six seasons
Linci, Career: 3.04/1.182/3.3 Four seasons + average of 10.1k's per 9 innings!

I will give you that Verlander is very good. And the Ace of the Tigres. Just not as dominating. I only wish the Cubs had ANY of these guys frankly.

You blew your argument with Danks as a "bit of a stretch" = the above Cy Young winners. Thanks for playing.

Pretty sure that I said that both Oswalt and Danks were stretches. Maybe you missed that part. And I never said that Danks equaled the Cy Young winners.

So you have crossed Danks and Oswalt off the list. Fair enough. You focus on those two, even though I admitted that they were not quite at the same level as the rest of the bunch.

You foolishly think that Lester is not a real ace, and you write off Verlander for no good reason.

You also don't acknowledge all of the other aces that I mentioned. Greinke, Hernandez, Lester, and Wainright are every bit as good as Halladay, CC, Lee, and Lincecum. And that is not even factoring in Cahill, Santana, Verlander, Josh Johnson, or Ubaldo Jiminez (who I forgot to mention in my earlier comment.

Could you have just pointed out that Halliday just made his first ever playoff start?

Heh. Touché.

Although the Phillies will not be starting [Oswalt] in the NLCS.

And by "not starting [Oswalt]," you mean starting him in Game 2?

If that is your point, I am not really what your point is. That he isn't as good as Halliday? No one said he was.

What is the goal of doing all this? Win 70 next year? Thin the Season Ticket herd? Get Mike Quade fired?

Sun Times, Chris DeLuca writes his pick is Sandberg

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/deluca/2801478...

It would be interesting to know how Quade "did" in his post-game interviews. Again, the pressure that he had compared to say Piniella in May was a totally different level, but I'd like to know how he responded to some tough questions - if anyone bothered to ask him one.

no one asked him one...instead of asking why he didn't yank soriano's chain for loafing they hailed him for sitting down castro...i'm w/ de luca but i'll bet quade interviews better than sandberg; more personality...dunno if sandberg is the one to pull the sword from the stone but pretty sure quade isn't; september records of also-rans are as worthless as used toilet paper...

september records of also-rans are as worthless as used toilet paper...

I agree. Of course, managers are worthless as used toilet paper. Over the long run, they may cause their team to perform at less than their talent, but never, over the long run, cause their team tp perform better than their talent.

Hire the cheapest candidate. Quade is probably the one.

we got rid of lou and all of a sudden the pitching came around.

quade is obviously the best pitching coach the team could have, though it has nothing to do with anything.

i think kevin mitchell should be our next manager. if people thought kicking dirt makes a great manager then imagine the motivation given to the players when the field is littered with knocked out umpires.

we got rid of lou and all of a sudden the pitching came around.

quade is obviously the best pitching coach the team could have, though it has nothing to do with anything.

well, you got that last part right...

3.41 team ERA in September (1.73 in 26ip/OCT) coming off 2 months of 5.00+ team era.

why is that disparity directly attributable to MQ?

it's not...im just spouting out crap trying to be funny riding on the manager talk.

quade became the manager and the pitchers suddenly learned how to pitch...i was using a cause/effect argument that's true yet baseless no matter what the stats show about it.

however...i do think having kevin mitchell as manager would be fun. he's got court in november for beating up victim #891 of his on a golf course earlier in the year, though.

----
CHULA VISTA, Calif. - A judge has ordered former
National League MVP Kevin Mitchell to stand trial on charges of punching a man several times in the head in July at a golf club in Southern California.

...

Mitchell's previous legal run-ins include rape charges in 1991 that were dropped, and an arrest in 1999 for allegedly beating up his father. A year later, while managing the minor-league Sonoma County Crushers, he was suspended nine games after punching the opposing team's owner during a brawl.

In 2002, he was suspended seven games for punching the same team's third-base coach, who Mitchell accused of stealing signs from the catcher.

reportedly played with torn ligament in thumb when with Braves, possible all season since original injury occurred on Opening Day

http://twitter.com/ajcbraves/status/27359088992

him and Soriano, 2 peas in a stupid pod.

The below makes for great Armchair GM 2010, but reality bites...

1. Dump Fuku. Play Colvin everyday for 2011.
Got a trade partner in mind? How much salary do you wish to pick up?

2. Fat Elvis for 1B? Dunn is too expensive.
Expect Colvin to get up to speed on the position.

3. Kerry Wood The Sequel, to be the setup man? Would be a nice story at least.
"Fagetaboutit". With his Yankee performance under his belt - for sure he will command too much $$ for the Ricketts. Let it go already!

4. Put Cashner and Marshall in the rotation where they belong.

So let's see: The Cubs have two Number 2/3 starters in Z and Demp (and you can flip them depending on the day), a #5 in Gorz, a #5 in Wells - on his "good" days, and a #5 in Silva. And you want to deplete a bullpen so that the other three #5's can manage to never notch a win? I would think that Casey Coleman may have more upside than Silva or Wells. And Gorzo is the only lefty now.
5. Package a couple of the surplus pitchers for some bench help.

Which surplus pitchers were you thinking and which bench player? If its Stevens, Gaub, Berg - I will drive them.
While I normally lambast Sabean for him raiding the Retirement Homes for players, this year it has worked out. Pat Burell - VERY productive. Uribe - his usual - but 20HR. He still has a good arm, though. And, their youngsters played exceptionally well. The Giants have decent bench players including Aaron Rowand, who has had a down year.

6. Move Silva if you can, but not the end of the world if the Cubs must keep him as a #5.
See comment above. One of three or four #5's. Just like shitty Cub teams in the 90's and 80's.

7. If Aramis wants to walk, by all means let him. Since Beltre is the only quality FA 3B available this year, Aramis might calculate that he'd do better with a 3-yearish type deal now, but at less $/year, than he'd do with his $14MM Cubs windfall in 2011 and then who knows what he gets in 2012.

I will be happy to bet $25 to Cubs Care that Ramirez will not "walk". The guy gets hurt EVERY year, and is out for nice DL stretches. He is going nowhere. I would be shocked if he walked away from what now looks like a great deal for him considering his age, lack of productivity in 2010, and the market.

8. Please, no more Koyie Hill. Please.

AGREED!

If bruce Miles is right, the Cubs may bring back Koyie Hill (he said on his blog that he's heard that they are learning towards doing that). It's nothing that personal against Koyie (well ... he's not good), but more that, if the organization really needs to save money, then why not turn to your two young catchers who are close to ready for the bigs for the backup backstop job (Chirinos and Castillo). Seems that wanting Hill back (if it's true, here's hoping not) might be as a much of an indictment on the Cubs perspective on Soto's receiving abilities.

Casey Coleman has better upside than Randy Wells? I understand why Wells got so much heat this year, but there were positives to his 2010 campaign. He had a significant improvement in K rate without huge differences in his BB and HR rates. He's still a solid number 4 starter, borderline mid-rotation arm if he has a good year. Coleman is one of those workmanlike guys, but he doesn't have the stuff to really strike out 6 hitters an inning right now, and he isn't a heavy groundball machine. He's a pitchability guy with average stuff, a guy who might tag onto the end of the rotation. I really don't think he has better upside than Wells.

if k.hill returns it better be as a coach...he's just done at the plate and his throwing in 2010 didn't look nearly as good in 07/09.

Ah, prospect news! Vitters 2 for 3 so far today, including an RBI double in a 9-run fourth.

They seem to like Hill with young pitchers, and there are several more of those on the way. Meanwhile, Sandberg knows Castillo well, and he got to use Chirinos toward the end of the season after Castillo was called up, so those two catchers will have an advocate if Sandberg gets the job.

The Cubs like Coleman--Ricketts just mentioned him in the letter to season-ticket holders, in almost the same breath as Castro/Colvin/Cashner--and he's five years younger than Wells, so if they're competing for the same job, Wells will be expendable.

>>The Cubs like Coleman--Ricketts just mentioned him in the letter to season-ticket holders, in almost the same breath as Castro/Colvin/Cashner--and he's five years younger than Wells, so if they're competing for the same job, Wells will be expendable.<<

Good point. Wells + Gorzo ought to fetch something decent in return on the open market. KC is desperate for starting pitching, but they have some nice young bats on the way. If you add Castillo to Wells and Gorzo, that should be enough for Billy Butler, a high-OBP guy for 1B. Butler is like the RH-version of Sean Casey, I could live with that at 1B.

"He's still a solid number 4 starter..."

HAHA! Tell that to Al Yellon! He'd agree with you.

How "solid" for a number 4 is a guy that gives up 3 in 7, then the NEXT outing gives up 7 in two innings!

Maybe if he's the best the Cubs can do, or afford, I'd agree with you.

But as a season ticket holder, I am looking for a little better if Randy Wells is a "solid number 4".

Wells is 28, and a converted catcher:
4.26 with a 1.400 whip, BB/K 2.29

Casey Coleman is 23. And, has MLB pitching pedigree:
4.11 with a 1.42 whip, and about a 1:1 BB/K in his limited activity.

So, yes, I think there could be more upside with Coleman.

That BB/K thing is all you need to know. Successful MLB pitchers don't have 1:1 BB to K ratios. Coleman has no business being in the major leagues, he's worse than Sarmardizja.

You mean K:BB, right? And being that that's the only place they differ statistically, right now, aside from innings pitched, then you're banking primarily on age. Which is fine, I think, but it looks like Coleman and Wells have similar upside. They are both back of the rotation types. If Randy Wells doesn't improve upon what he did this year, he's a #5 starter/swing man, but if Coleman doesn't improve, he's probably the same.

>>1. Dump Fuku. Play Colvin everyday for 2011.
Got a trade partner in mind? How much salary do you wish to pick up?<<

Any trade partner, doesn' matter. Fuku $$ is a sunk cost, if I'm Ricketts, I eat nearly all of it to turn the page on that chapter. Colvin needs to play everyday, and it won't be at 1B.

>>I will be happy to bet $25 to Cubs Care that Ramirez will not "walk". The guy gets hurt EVERY year, and is out for nice DL stretches. He is going nowhere. I would be shocked if he walked away from what now looks like a great deal for him considering his age, lack of productivity in 2010, and the market.<<

You telling me there isn't a team out there right now that wouldn't take Aramis on a, say, 3/24 deal? If Aramis really is nearing the end, he'd be the first to know it. And I would think his agent is smart enough to understand that $24MM is more money than $14MM.

The Angels liked him before, so did the Tigers. I can see one of those happening and at some point, said team moves Ramirez to DH where he probably belongs. A DH gig prolongs Aramis' career, so he jumps at the chance to go to the AL, and that's that.

Probably won't happen, no, but I think it would be optimal for Aramis to leave if he draws any kind of interest this offseason.

If Ramirez could get 3 years at 8 million per year this winter, he could certainly get 2 years at 8 million per year next winter. In the meantime, he would get almost 15 million this year from the Cubs.

Players sometimes do stupid things, but I doubt that Ramirez is likely to do anything as stupid as walk away from the Cubs this winter.

Recent comments

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  • 34-14...awww yeah.

    crunch 33 min 41 sec ago view
  • Good thing the Cubs have five left-handed batters in the lineup. Velasquez is just tearing thru the righties [edit - doesn't seem to faze Bryant!]

    Eric S 1 hour 54 min ago view
  • ben zobrist gets to ride up front tonight cause he's a good guy at sports.

    cubs with a 5 run lead and a lackey shutout through 3ip \m/

    crunch 2 hours 28 min ago view
  • HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC. 

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 24 min ago view
  • ERIC S: Best outing I've ever seen from Manny Rondon, and I've seen most of his outings since the Cubs got him from the Angels. 

    M. Rondon is competing with six others (Dylan Cease, Bryan Hudson, Jose Paulino, Pedro Silverio, Jesus Castillo, and Erling Moreno) for a starting slot at Eugene, and (as you can probably tell from the EXST box scores)  the competition has gotten fierce over the last couple of weeks, With the exception of Moreno, the Eugene SP candidates have upped their game lately, and M. Rondon's outing yesterday was especially impressive/dominating. 

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 27 min ago view
  • E-MAN: Pierce Johnsion was mixing a 92-94 MPH fastball with a plus-change-up AND curve, and he threw strike-after-strike-after-strike with all three of his pitches. I believe that was the best command and pitch-efficiency I've ever seen from Johnson, who often pitches from behind in the count and issues too many walks.  

    Of course now he has to avoid a recurrence of the lat strain (whch he has had previously in his career) as well as all of the other miscellaneous physical problems he's had over the last three years (hamstring, quad, back, etc).  

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 37 min ago view
  • PHIL: Any movement on P. Johnsons pitches? What was his "out" pitch? I know he was working on a 4th pitch, so wondering what he is looking like these days. Thanks.

    The E-Man 6 hours 20 min ago view
  • AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

    Hagsag 11 hours 5 min ago view
  • Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!

    Hagsag 11 hours 6 min ago view
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 20 hours 47 min ago view
  • 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.

    johann 23 hours 45 min ago view
  • 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.

    crunch 23 hours 57 min ago view
  • 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.

    The E-Man 1 day 6 min ago view
  • 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.

    The E-Man 1 day 11 min ago view
  • 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...

    crunch 1 day 30 min ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 1 day 1 hour ago view