Talking Stick... or Candlestick?

The EXST Rockies defeated the EXST Cubs 7-4 this morning in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Red Mountain Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort east of Scottsdale.

The game was played under clear skies but with the wind blowing out to RF at 25 MPH, as several balls fell safely (including three doubles and an inside-the-park HR) when fielders (most notably Keystone Kubs outfielders Dong-Yub Kim and Oliver Zapata) collided with each other and/or lost pop ups and fly balls in the sun and/or wind.

At one point Cubs pitcher Matt Loosen was apparently so frustrated by fielders not catching pop ups that he ran full-speed to the Cubs 1st base dugout to try and catch a foul pop, calling off 1st baseman Wilson Contreras and catcher Yaniel Cabezas (either of whom probably could have made the catch fairly easily), and then (naturally) the ball fell between all three of them in foul territory.   

Both Reggie Golden and Yaniel Cabezas slammed wind-aided doubles (both near-HR) off the outfield fence, but the Rockies put more balls in the air than did the Cubs, and that turned the tide in the Rocks favor.

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

1. Vismeldy Bieneme, 2B: 0-4 (F-8, K, K, 1-3)
2a. Dong-Yub Kim, LF: 0-3 (K, K, 5-3)
2b. Eduardo Gonzalez, LF: 1-1 (3B, R, RBI)
3. Marco Hernandez, DH #1: 1-4 (P-3, K, K, 1B, RBI)
4. Wilson Contreras, 1B: 0-4 (5-3, F-7, L-4, 1-3)
5. Jesus Morelli, RF: 0-3 (6-3, 5-3, K)
6. Reggie Golden, DH #2: 1-3 (2B, K, P-6)
7. Wes Darvill, SS: 0-3 (K, K, 6-3)
8a. Yaniel Cabezas, C: 1-2 (F-9, 2B, R)
8b. Johan DeJesus, C: 0-1 (E-5)
9. Dustin Geiger, 3B: 1-2 (1B, BB, 6-3 DP, SB)
10. Oliver Zapata, CF: 1-3 (K, 1B, 3-1, RBI, SB)
11b. Pin-Chieh Chen, DH #3: 1-1 (1B, R)

1. Justin Bristow: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 42 pitches (31 strikes), 2/3 GO/FO
2. Matt Loosen: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 6 K, 1 HR, 59 pitches (40 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
3. Jin-Young Kim: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 2 K, 39 pitches (23 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
4. Alvaro Sosa: 0.1 IP, 4 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 15 pitches (7 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
NOTE: Sosa’s inning was stopped with one out when he reached his pre-planned max pitch limit


1. Yaniel Cabezas: 0-1 CS, 1 PB
2. Johan DeJesus 0-1 CS

CF Oliver Zapata threw out runner 8-2 trying to score from 2nd base on ground single to CF


WEATHER: Sunny and VERY breezy with temperatures in the 80’s



that new col/arz complex is amazing. i've seen a few video tours and compared to what they had in beyond night/day difference in facilities. i'm not sure how i'd feel as a player having so much open-viewed access to the workout rooms, though.

pena sits tonight (against a righty)...baker @1st, batting 5th

why baseball is awesome...

We[Kevin Towers & the Padres] used to dial it[radar gun readings] down. I know for a fact that every time Brad Penny pitched for the Dodgers in San Diego it was probably the lowest velocities he ever had. He liked velocity. He’d stare at the board. He was throwing 95-96, but we’d have it at 91 and he’d get pissed off and throw harder and harder and start elevating.

Sure enough, I checked the numbers and Brad Penny is 1-5 with a 6.47 ERA in 10 career games pitched in San Diego. Towers also admitted that the Padres “would bump it up on a couple of our pitchers” because “we felt it gave us an edge.”

That's great.

wow..they already have Zorbzilla shirts...they're sleeveless "incredible hulk" fake torn bottom-shirt 80s looking as hell.

tb has them in the booth, but they're not available just yet. "marketing" threw it together over the past 24 hours.


the ARE available, evidently...or some got given away because there's people in the stands wearing the shirt. maybe they meant it's not available online yet...*shrug*

Hey Arizona Phil,

I meant to ask you this yesterday after seeing your report but didn't get a chance. What is Luis Liria's stuff like? He had good results last year, you say he should be in Peoria and seems to have good results at Fitch whenever you report.

Also, do you think Justin Bristow is progressing in his rehab and will be ready to get promoted soon?

Thank you!

Yes Jeff Baker bats ahead of Sori and Soto.

/time for Uncle Fester to go

Uncle Fester! Ha!

Baker interestingly is one of their best hitters so far.

Sadly, Pena and Soto are not.

Nice come-from-behind win by Iowa tonight, beating the 1927 Yankees--I mean the Royals' triple-A team--by a score of 4 to 3 in Omaha, on Marquez Smith's 3-run 9th-inning homer.

The Smokies came from three runs down in the 6th, scoring eight runs in the final three innings and ending up with 18 hits, not an outrageous hit total for them. Everyone in the starting lineup tonight except the pitcher and Marwin Gonzalez (at .290) and you-know-who (at .243) is over .300. Lalli, the second-string first baseman, is hitting .348.

Zach Rosscup, the forgotten man in the Garza deal, went six innings with 8 K's and picked up his first win for Daytona.

and you-know-who (at .243) is over .300

John Gaub?

Gotta be Vitters. Time to promote him!


Things were going well with Castro and Barney hitting 1-2, baldy should go back to that. Today's Soriano, Soto, Z 7-9 has to be the strongest bottom third in the NL. Goofy bastard.

paul sulivan lulz...

"Soriano's nine home runs in April sets a franchise record, surpassing D-Lee, Lee Walls and Sammy (Sosa, not Fuld)."

also, for the "who the hell is lee walls crowd" (like me):

ah, the "one magical season" career...shame.

takes a bunt off the face...OUCH!

looks like it hit more of the bill of his helmet luckily.

1- Fox Sat. evening baseball is coming on a more regular basis...neat. they did a couple evening games last year (both yanks games).

2- the commercial advertising it with joe buck is funny

Whitesnake getting roughed up a little right now for TN. Vitters now batting #7 in the lineup.

who the what?


Vitters went 2/4 with a double and a HR.

ah yeah, i keep forgeting he's relevant. i hadn't heard of him til this spring.

Recent comments

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  • there's nothing like crapping out of the playoffs with a strong/young cheap team after pinching pennies for years then having theo talk about having to be creative with money to make things work for 2016...but hey, baseball isn't baseball without a farmer's market and beer garden plaza with ice rinks.

    they can do both...then again, if you want to look at it from a business point of view, they don't have to do both because the team is expected to be competitive and the merch+tickets+eyes-on-team are going to be at a peak unless they fail badly.

  • Really ?

    They are trying to bring the facility to the 20th century.
    I think they know what they are doing.

  • With the Cubs adding Pierce Johnson to their roster and not exposing/losing him to the Rule 5 Draft keeps the trade ancestry tree alive that started in 1999 with Tom Gordon and undrafted Adam Morrissey and includes 17 players, the trade tree progressed to involve the Hee Sop Choi for Derrek Lee deal and the famous Aramis Ramirez/Kenny Lofton deal..Pierce Johnson is the compensation pick for Aramis Ramirez in 2012

  • Well played.

  • Yeah, the Rex brothers, Tyrannosaurus and Oedipus

  • When I first saw the Tweet, I thought there were two guys. Happy Thanksgiving gang! And TheoJed!

  • They can use another Brother

  • Cubs acquired Rex Brothers. Awesome fit for this team. Wander Cabrera going to COL.

  • "MLB announces #Cubs Minor League RHP Tanner Griggs receives 50-game suspension without pay after testing positive for amphetamine"

    2014 12th rounder...

    it's hard to know who to blame...on one hand he's a baseball player, on the other he sells cars in the offseason...either job leads to amphetamine abuse. =p

  • Thanks PHIL! I thought only the Cubs had control until the last day of the MLB 2015 Season.

  • that's awesome...makes me look forward to hearing theo talk some more about how the team needs to be creative with finances because money is tight.


  • See What The Cubs Are Building This Off-Season For Wrigley Plaza, Clubhouse

  • CUBBIES-4-EVER: It's not unusual for a PTBNL to be chosen after the Rule 5 Draft from the list of Rule 5 eligible players who were not selected. That way, a club gets a player they like (perhaps somebody like OF Jeffrey Baez) without the cumbersome Rule 5 roster restrictions that go with a Rule 5 Draft pick.

  • Clayton Richard is absolutely, positively NOT a free-agent. He is under club control through the 2016 season. 

  • Haren was 4-2 with a 4.01 ERA with the Cubs. Seems like he worked out just as expected.