Cubs Win! Cubs Lose! Cubs Win! Cubs Lose!
Evan Crawford raked a two-run triple over the left-fielder's head to tie the game, Tony Campana followed with an RBI single (his third hit of the game) to plate Crawford, and D. J. Lemahieu capped the inning with an RBI double to score Campana, as the Cubs Minor League All-Stars rallied for four runs in the top of the 9th to defeat the Chicago Cubs 8-6 in the 2011 Cubs Spring Training Intrasquad Charity Game at Dwight Patterson Field at HoHoKam Park in sunny Mesa, AZ, this morning.
The Cubs major league players were long gone by the time the Cubs Minor League All-Stars put together their game-winning 9th inning rally, but while they were still around, Randy Wells worked three innings, throwing two shutout and hitless innings before allowing one run on two hits in his third inning of work (a bunt single by Kyung-Min Na leading off the inning, a 3-U GO, and an RBI ground single to CF by Tony Campana). For the day, Wells threw 43 pitches (26 strikes) and he looked fairly sharp, getting a ton of ground balls (7/1 GO/FO).
John Grabow threw a 1-2-3 eight-pitch 4th (three balls hit sharply, but all right at somebody), and James Russell threw a shutout 5th (lead-off double, but then he pitched out of trouble nicely, getting a 5-3 GO, an L-7, and a K).
Marcos Mateo had a bad outing, allowing two runs on four hits in the 6th (two singles leading off the inning, a 6-4-3 DP, and then an RBI double and an RBI single, both hits coming with two outs).
The Chicago Cubs offense didn’t do much against the Minor League All-Stars starter (veteran AAA LHP J. R. Mathes) through the first three innings (no runs, three hits), but then Starlin Castro led-off the bottom of the 4th with a double down the LF line, and scored on a one-out RBI single by Jeff Baker. Darwin Barney capped the inning by crushing a two-run HR over the LF fence, giving the Chicago Cubs a 3-1 lead.
The Cubs major leaguers then headed for the showers and a bus ride to Sky Harbor International Airport, where they were scheduled to fly back to Chicago via charter at about 4 PM local time, arriving in Chicago around 9 PM (CDT). The Cubs will have a closed workout at Wrigley Field Thursday afternoon, before Opening Day on Friday versus the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Other game highlights after the MLB Cubs left the game included a two run Cubs 6th (Nelson Perez lead-off single, Junior Lake opposite-field double into the RF corner, and a Ryan Flaherty RBI single), a two-out RBI double by Marquez Smith lined off the LF fence in the 7th (M. Smith also made two outstanding stops & throws at 3B), a Josh Vitters RBI double off Marcos Mateo in the 6th and a Vitters RBI triple off the CF Batter’s Eye "Green Monster" in the 7th, and then of course the four-run rally in the top of the 9th featuring the Evan Crawford game-tying RBI triple (the long-legged long-striding Crawford looked like he was running the final leg in the 440 relay as he whipped around the bases), the Tony Campana game-winning RBI single (Campana also stole two bases earlier in the game), and the D. J. Lemahieu RBI double to cap the scoring.
Cubs #1 pitching prospect RHP Trey McNutt followed Mathes to the mound for the Minor League All-Stars and threw four innings of one-run ball and was the winning pitcher, despite allowing eight baserunners (three hits and five walks). McNutt was very wild throughout his outing, throwing 63 pitches in his four innings of work, but only 31 of the pitches (less than half) for strikes.
Here is today’s box score:
CUBS MINOR LEAGUE ALL-STARS vs CHICAGO CUBS
CUBS MINOR LEAGUE ALL-STARS LINEUP:
1a. Brett Jackson, CF: 0-2 (BB, 3-U, K)
1b. Evan Crawford, LF: 1-2 (K, 3B, R, 2 RBI)
2. Tony Campana, LF-CF: 3-5 (4-6 FC, 1B, 1B, K, 1B, 2 R, 2 RBI, 2 SB)
3. D. J. Lemahieu, 2B-3B: 2-5 (5-3, 6-4-3 DP, 1B, F-8, 2B, RBI)
4a. Rebel Ridling, 1B: 0-3 (E-5, F-8, 5-4-3 DP)
4b. Nate Samson, 2B: 2-2 (1B, 1B, R, SB)
5. Josh Vitters, 3B-1B: 2-5 (K, 4-3, 2B, 3B, 5-3, R, 2 RBI)
6a. Steve Clevenger, C: 0-2 (3-1, L-7)
6b. Sergio Burruel, C: 1-2 (1B, L-5, RBI)
7a. Marwin Gonzalez, SS: 1-3 (6-3, 2B, 4-3)
7b. Arismendy Alcantara, SS: 0-1 (3-U)
8. Jae-Hoon Ha, RF: 1-4 (L-7, 5-3, F-9, 2B, R)
9. Kyung-Min Na, DH #1: 2-4 (1B, L-7, 1B, 4-3, R, SB)
10a. SLOT SKIPPED FIRST THREE TIMES THRU ORDER
10b. Micah Gibbs, DH #2: 1-1 (1B, R)
CHICAGO CUBS LINEUP:
1a. Kosuke Fukudome, RF: 0-2 (3-1, F-8)
1b. Nelson Perez, RF: 1-2 (1B, 6-3, BB, R)
2a. Starlin Castro, SS: 1-2 (F-9, 2B, R)
2b. Junior Lake, SS: 1-2 (2B, F-7, R)
2c. Wes Darvill, PH-SS: 0-1 (F-8)
3a. Alfonso Soriano, DH #1: 0-1 (5-3)
3b. SLOT SKIPPED 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th TIMES THRU ORDER
4a. Tyler Colvin, LF: 0-2 (4-3, L-4)
4b. Ryan Flaherty, LF: 1-2 (1B, 4-3, RBI)
4c. D. J. Fitzgerald, PH-LF: 0-1 (P-4)
5a. Jeff Baker, 1B: 2-2 (1B, 1B, RBI)
5b. Justin Bour, PR-1B: 0-2 (3-U, BB, FC, 2 R, RBI)
6a. Darwin Barney, 2B: 1-2 (F-8, HR, R, 2 RBI)
6b. Logan Watkins, 2B: 0-1 (K, BB)
6c. Pierre LePage, 2B: 0-1 (F-9)
7a. Blake DeWitt, 3B: 2-2 (1B, 1B)
7b. Marquez Smith, 3B: 1-2 (5-3, 2B, RBI)
7c. Reggie Golden, PH: 0-0 (BB)
8a. Reed Johnson, CF: 0-2 (P-5, 4-6 FC)
8b. Rubi Silva, CF: 2-3 (1B, 1B, 6-4 FC)
9a. Koyie Hill, C: 1-3 (1B, 6-3, K)
9b. Michael Brenly, C: 0-0 (BB, SB)
9c. Yaniel Cabezas, C: 0-1 (F-8)
10a. Carlos Pena, DH #2: 0-1 (P-5)
10b. SLOT SKIPPED 2nd, 3rd, and 4th TIME THRU ORDER
11a. Randy Wells, DH #3: 0-0 (1-4 SH)
11b. SLOT SKIPPED 2nd, 3rd, and 4th TIMES THRU ORDER
CUBS MINOR LEAGUE ALL-STARS PITCHERS:
1. J. R. Mathes: 5.0 IP, 10 H, 5 R (5 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 60 pitches (44 strikes), 8/6 GO/FO
2. Trey McNutt: 4.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 5 BB, 1 K, 1 PO, 63 pitches (31 strikes), 4/5 GO/FO
CHICAGO CUBS PITCHERS:
1. Randy Wells: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 GIDP, 43 pitches (26 strikes), 7/1 GO/FO
2. John Grabow: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 8 pitches (6 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
3. James Russell: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 BB, 1 K, 18 pitches (13 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
4. Marcos Mateo: 1.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, (2 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 16 pitches (12 strikes), 3/0 GO/FO
5. Jeffrey Lorick: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 21 pitches (12 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
6. Kevin Rhoderick: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 17 pitches (11 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
7. Frank Batista: 0.2 IP, 6 H, 4 R (4 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 31 pitches (19 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
8. Justin Berg: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 2 pitches ( 2 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
CUBS MINOR LEAGUE ALL-STARS ERRORS: 3
1. SS Marwin Gonzalez E-6 – errant relay throw to 1st base on attempted 6-4-3 DP went into 1st base dugout allowing batter to advance to 2nd base
2. 3B Josh Vitters E-5 – fielding error while trying to cut-off throw to plate allowed batter-runner to advance from 1st to 2nd base on RBI single
3. 1B Josh Vitters E-3 – errant throw to 2nd base allowed runner who had been picked-off to arrive safely.
CHICAGO CUBS ERRORS: 2
1. 3B Blake DeWitt E-5 – errant throw to 1st base allowed batter to reach safely
2. LF Ryan Flaherty E-7 - errant throw home allowed batter-runner to advance to 2nd base on an RBI single
CUBS MINOR LEAGUE ALL-STARS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Sergio Burruel: 0-1 CS
CHICAGO CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Koyie Hill: 0-2 CS
2. Michael Brenly: 0-1 CS
3. Yaniel Cabezas: 0-1 CS
CUBS MINOR LEAGUE ALL-STARS OUTFIELD DEFENSE:
LF Evan Crawford threw out runner at home plate 7-2 trying to score on double
CHICAGO CUBS OUTFIELD DEFENSE:
CF Rubi Silva threw out runner at home plate 8-2 trying to score from 2nd base on single to CF
listening on ESPN 1000, caller says Bill Welke will be the home plate ump today. Supposedly his reputation is for having an even bigger strike zone than last night's Phil Cuzzi. Some of the issues with bad umpiring come from an inconsistent strike zone. Hoping at least for consistency. Last night's called strike on David Ross was outright embarrassing for Cuzzi.
That might work out in favor of Kyle Hendricks, who benefits much from a large strike zone.
it's kind of mesmerizing to watch
should Theo add some Ted Abernathy videos for minor league pitching coordinator's use?
sadly, Ted passed away in 2004 from complications of Alzheimers. I always loved the Cub bullpen trio of Phil Regan, Ted Abernathy and Hank Aguirre. As a kid, I even worked on both Phil Regan (very quirky delivery) and Ted Abernathy (extreme submarine) imitations when throwing a rubber ball against a wall. It wasn't a good imitation unless I could scrape my knuckles off the ground. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for submariners.
HAGSAG: Chris Pieters was sent to instructs to develop his hitting, bunting, and outfield play (he is already a decent first-baseman).
Pieters is tall and rangy , a "long-strider" in the same mold as Trey Martin and Rashad Crawford. He is a very patient hitter (unusual for a hitter with his lack of experience) and has an outstanding (almost uncanny) eye at the plate, and he is a fast runner with unusually good baserunning instincts, and he is a good basestealer, too.
I doubt we will see Pedro in any more "high leverage" situations this series. With Hendricks and the pen today, we need Bryant-Rizzo-Castro to get going ASAP.
One funny thing to see before the game was the two submariner pitchers (David Berg and Corbin Hoffner) playing catch with each other. Both pitchers throw "submarine" even when they play catch, and it's kind of mesmerizing to watch, even for the other players.
CUBSTER: One of the points of emphasis at "basic" Instructs this year was teaching the position players the art of baserunning and base-stealing, like getting a good primary and seconday lead, reading the pitcher, cutting bases sharply, and different ways to slide to maximize the baserunner's chance to arrive safely.
Brooksbaseball.net has some interesting stats/graphs on pitch and strike zones and you can dial up individual games/pitchers. I'd love to see some comments from readers who can interpret this better than I can. I thought the Ump was really inconsistent with a very wide zone. Does this info seem to match up with my eyeball perception? Also, looking at the graphs, Lackey was not throwing as many pitches below the K-zone (certainly more above) while Lester was clearly getting his pitches down and not many above.
As I was fearing in my post yesterday, Maddon keeps trotting Strop out against the Redbirds and he constantly fails. I understand the psychology behind this, but in a series where there is a finite lock on who moves on, why does he keep riding the wrong horse?
AZ Phil: Agree, this must have been a really fun game to watch. There was a lot of base stealing going on. Are the pitchers not holding runners or is the catching still a work in progress?
Cuzzi has long been known as having the biggest strike zone among all umpires.
AZ Phil, give me a scouting report on Chris Pieters since he has become a 1B/OF.
I think it's probably hard to adjust to an ump's zone mid-game, as least for hitters. Pitchers can locate to an ump's zone, but hitters have minimal time to react.
But, whatever. Umps are going to miss calls. Let's beat up on the non-Lackey starters.
Watched a little of Mets-Dodgers.
Jason deGrom -- oh, my.
Cubs 3-4-5 hitters are 0-21 so far in the post-season.
Let's change that in a big effin' way tomorrow, boys.
Considering how players reacted it seemed pretty accurate high and wide (to righties), but not so accurate low and in. I thought the strike zone by the ump was awful, but it was consistent and the Cubs never adjusted.
Rizzo and Bryant need to have good at bats. They are really looking outclassed in these two games.
that game sounds fun as hell.