Chiefs & D-Cubs Rally to Tie a Wrap on Minor League Camp
D. J. Fitzgerald singled, doubled, tripled, stole a base, scored one run, and knocked-in two more, and LHP Austin Kirk threw four shutout innings, as the Peoria Chiefs rallied to tie the Cedar Rapids Kernels (Los Angeles Angels Class “A” affiliate) 3-3 on Field #2, while next-door on Field #3 Michael Burgess clubbed a grand slam HR over the RF fence and Evan Crawford doubled, tripled, walked, stole a base, drove-in two runs, and scored another, as the Daytona Cubs rallied from an early 5-0 hole to tie the Inland Empire 66ers (Angels Advanced “A” affiliate) 7-7, in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training action at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ, this morning.
This was the “getaway day” game for both Daytona and Peoria, but since the Iowa Cubs will be remaining in Mesa for another day (they open the season Thursday at Round Rock, TX), I-Cubs catcher Welington Castillo stayed at Fitch Park and served as a DH for Daytona while his teammates traveled to Diablo Park in Tempe to face the Angels Salt Lake Bees AAA affiliate.
After a short intrasquad game on Field #1, several players from the Boise/Mesa (Extended Spring Training) squad (C Yaniel Cabezas, SS Wes Darvill, 3B Dustin Harrington, C Brian Inoa, and LF Blair Springfield) saw some late game action with Daytona in the game on Field #3. (Players from the Boise/Mesa Extended Spring Training group are often used as late inning replacements in Minor League Spring Training games).
Peoria OF Matt Szczur (who has been sidelined more than a week with a leg injury) was able to run the bases in a PFP & baserunning work-out with some of the pitchers from the Boise/Mesa squad on Field #4 prior to the intrasquad game on Field #1. It is unknown if Szczur will be cleared for game action by Opening Day next Thursday, or if he will begin the season on the Peoria 7-day DL and remain at Fitch Park for a few more days.
And OF Smaily Borges has been moved down to Peoria from Tennessee, probably to serve as a “Crash Davis”-type minor league mentor to RHP Juan Yasser Serrano and OF Rubi Silva (all three are Cuban defectors, but the 27-year old Borges is older than the others, and was brought to the U. S. by the Cubs a year earlier). It’s possible that Borges will eventually serve as a player-coach at Peoria (like 1B John Urick is at Daytona), although he is probably needed on the Chiefs active roster right now, at least until Szczur returns to game action.
In addition, RHP Alessandro Maestri and LHP Chris Siegfried have been released (both were with the Tennessee squad). Siegfried was the Cubs 11th round draft pick in 2007 out of the U. of Portland (where he was a teammate of current Iowa RHP Austin Bibens-Dirkx), and Maestri was the first player signed by the Cubs out of the MLB European Academy (in January 2006). Despite getting released by the Cubs, the 25-year old Maestri could be the #1 starting pitcher for Team Italy in next year’s World Baseball Classic (he pitched for Team Italy in both the 2006 and 2009 WBC), presuming there is one.
The DAYTONA CUBS OPENING DAY ROSTER has been established;
* bats or throws left
# bats both
PITCHERS (13): * Jeffrey Beliveau, * Brent Ebinger, Ty'Relle Harris, Aaron Kurcz, Jordan Latham, * Jeff Lorick, Dae-Eun Rhee, Kevin Roderick, * Zac Rosscup, Ryan Searle, Nick Struck, Brett Wallach, and Rob Whitenack
CATCHERS (2): Michael Brenly and Chad Noble
INFIELDERS (6): * Justin Bour, * Matt Cerda, Junior Lake, # David Macias, * Jake Opitz, and * Logan Watkins,
OUTFIELDERS (4): * Michael Burgess, Evan Crawford, Jae-Hoon Ha, and * Nelson Perez
PLAYER-COACH (1): * John Urick (1B signed to a player contract, but is inactive unless needed and normally serves as 1st base coach)
Here are today’s abridged box scores from Fitch Park (Cubs players only):
FIELD #2 (CLASS “A” – Peoria Chiefs vs Cedar Rapids Kernels)
1. Arismendy Alcantara, SS: 1-4 (P-5, 6-3, 6-3, 1B, R)
2. Rubi Silva, CF: 1-4 (5-3, K, 1-3, 1B)
3. D. J. Fitzgerald, LF: 3-4 (E-5, 3B, 1B, 2B, R, 2 RBI, SB, PO)
4. Richard Jones, 1B: 1-4 (1B, F-7, F-8, K, RBI)
5a. Ryan Cuneo, DH: 0-1 (F-7)
5b. Smaily Borges, PH-DH: 0-3 (F-9, 6-4 FC, K)
6. Anthony Giansanti, 3B: 2-4 (1B+E6, F-8, K, 1B)
7. Xavier Batista, RF: 1-4 (K, L-5, E-5, 1B)
8. Sergio Burruel, C: 0-4 (5-3, K, 6-4-3 DP, 6-4-3 DP)
9. Elliot Soto, 2B: 1-3 (K, K, 1B, R)
1. Austin Kirk: 4.0 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 GIDP, 56 pitches (38 strikes), 5/4 GO/FO
2. Eric Jokisch: 1.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 34 pitches (21 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
3. Bryce Shafer: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 26 pitches (10 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
4. Juan Yasser Serrano: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 17 pitches (12 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
5. Marcus Hatley: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 24 pitches (15 strikes)
PEORIA ERRORS: 2
1. CF Rubi Silva E-8 – dropped pop fly in CF allowing batter to reach base safely
2. C Sergio Burruel E-2 - dropped pop up in foul territory prolonging AB
PEORIA CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Sergio Burruel: 1-1 CS, 1 E (see above)
FIELD #3 (CLASS “ADVANCED-A” – Daytona Cubs vs Inland Empire 66ers)
1a. Logan Watkins, 2B: 0-1 (K, BB, BB, R)
1b. David Macias, 2B: 1-2 (P-6, 1B, RBI)
2a. Matt Cerda, 3B: 0-3 (F-7, P-6, 4-6-3 DP)
2b. Dustin Harrington, 3B: 1-2 (1B, K)
3. Jae-Hoon Ha, DH #1: 0-4 (K, BB, F-9, 6-4-3 DP, 3-U, R)
4a. Justin Bour, 1B: 0-1 (K, BB, R)
4b. Jake Opitz, 1B: 0-2 (E-3, K, CS)
5. Welington Castillo, DH #2: 0-3 (BB, K, K, F-8)
6a. Michael Burgess, LF: 1-2 (K, HR, R, 4 RBI)
6b. Blair Springfield, LF: 0-2 (3-1, F-9)
7a. Michael Brenly, C: 0-1 (K, BB)
7b. Yaniel Cabezas, C: 1-1 (1B)
7c. Brian Inoa, C: 0-1 (F-7)
8. Nelson Perez, RF: 0-4 (K, K, K,, K+WP, R)
9a. Junior Lake, SS: 0-2 (6-3, 3-U)
9b. Wes Darvill, SS: 0-2 (K, E-6, R)
10. Evan Crawford, CF: 2-3 (6-3, BB, 2B, 3B, R, 2 RBI, SB)
1. Aaron Kurcz: 4.0 IP, 7 H, 5 R (5 ER), 1 BB, 5 K, 67 pitches (45 strikes), 2/5 GO/FO
2. Dae-Eun Rhee: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 5 K, 48 pitches (34 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
3. Jeff Lorick: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 10 pitches (4 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
4. Jordan Latham: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 14 pitches (9 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
5. Kevin Rhoderick: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 19 pitches (10 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
DAYTONA ERRORS: 3:
1. P Aaron Kurcz E-1 – errant pick-off attempt at 2nd base allowed runner at 2nd and runner at 1st to advance a base
2. SS Junior Lake E-6 – fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely – eventually scored unearned run
3. LF Blair Springfield E-7 – errant throw back into infield after single allowed runner who had stopped at 3rd to score and batter-runner to move-up to 2nd base
DAYTONA CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Brian Inoa: 1 PB
WEATHER: Sunny & breezy with temperatures in the 80’s
I think with Hammels and Hendricks struggles the 2nd half we forget how dominate of 1st halves they had and how many games they won us as the offense was struggling. We also forget they are back of the rotation guys and we can't be expecting ace quality there.
Maybe it's just Werth & Ross I'm noticing. Weird.
CRAIG: Jose Albertos is not chunky like Fernando. He's built more like Dylan Cease. Exact same body type. And his delivery is free & easy. He's definitely not a "max effort" guy.
Hendricks after 50 MLB starts: 17-11, 3.45 ERA, 1.12 WHIP. Not bad for a #5 starter. He may be a 6-inning max guy, but, if he can keep those stats up, I will gladly take it.
Speaking of WHIP -- last year, he was tied for 11th in the NL. Tied with Hammel.
Last year's NL rank in WHIP: Arrietta 2nd, Lester 9th, Haren 10th, Hammel T11th, Hendricks T11th. Wow.
I went to a Nats game in DC two years ago while looking at colleges with my son -- it's a fun park, worth a visit if you are in the area.
I also saw the "slowness" thing -- particularly Werth, who would mosey out of RF about 5 seconds before the inning started.
It's Dusty's fault. It'll be the end of them.
Speaking of how teams "look", my take on the Nats- It's really weird, but the pace of the entire team seems slow. Slow walking to the plate, slow on the mound, even on some routine groundouts, it looked as if there wasn't a ton of hustle. Don't get me wrong, when the ball is hit to their outfielders, they get after the ball, I'm really referring to non-critical action- they mosey around. It's kind of odd. Maybe that "calm power" is part of the Nats ethos, idk.
My favorite moment of Hendricks' performance last night was the last strikeout he rung up- the cajones it took to throw a high, 86MPH fastball to Zimmerman on a 0-2 count. And he swung the bat like it was a 96MPH heater. I literally laughed out loud.
In listening to Maddon's post-game, he is interested in how these other teams "look" to him. He is assessing for today...and tomorrow. I love this guy.
One observation from last night: Joe Ross is incredibly slow. 20-30 seconds between pitches at times. Hendrix had a nice, peppy rhythm which is great to see.
I know there are plenty of purists here which I applaud, but the game just will not sustain itself unless change of pace rules come into play. Pitch clock, improve the shit-ass reviews, mound visits (there is a clock for this), batter time outs, etc.
Thanks, Phil. Albertos at 17, and having gotten a good signing bonus ($1.5, even though as Mexican prospect I think his team gets half of that?), throwing in the 90's and showing some command of a curveball sounds pretty interesting, even if that control is only for a dozen-pitch sample.
What kind of a frame does he have? Is he on the stocky and short-ish side (I'm recalling Fernando Valenzuela!), or somewhat taller? A lot of 17-year olds have projection, "when he fills out" projection. Would that apply at all for Albertos?
I definitely hang around here looking to reply to your comments as noticed by my nearly year long absence.
there's a fine line between posting something relevant, useful or at least humorous versus posting something irrelevant, useless or unfunny...actually it's rather quite a thick line and easy to see for most people not named crunch.
I certainly am digging the RISP machine Zobrist version.
Cubs are taking advantage of bad D by their opponents -- did it a few times in PIT and the Nats botched 2-out rundown leads to 3 Cub runs in the 8th. Which were nice to have.
I hope Kyle had fun at the dance party -- he was terrific.