Leaver It to a Beaver to Rally A's to Victory
With his team down 4-3 with two outs in the bottom of the 8th, Ryan Ortiz ripped a two-run HR over the LF fence to give the EXST Athletics the lead and eventually the victory, as the EXST Cubs were edged 5-4 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Connie Mack Field at the Papago Sports Complex in Phoenix.
The A’s 2009 6th round draft pick out of Oregon State (where he was a teammate of Cubs infielder Darwin Barney on the 2007 CWS champion Beavers), Ortiz is at Extended Spring Training rehabbing from an injury suffered in Minor League Camp.
The Cubs offensive star of the day was 2B Pin-Chieh Chen, who reached base four times (three singles and a walk) and scored twice.
Conversely, Kyung-Min Na had a bad day all around, striking out four times (that’s the ol’ “Golden Sombrero,” folks) and dropping a fly ball in CF for a two-base error.
Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1. Kyung-Min Na, CF: 0-5 (K, 6-4 FC+E-4, K, K, K, R)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED 2nd TIME THROUGH BATTING ORDER
2. Dustin Harrington, SS: 0-3 (E-5, 5-3, F-9)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED 3rd and 5th TIMES THROUGH BATTING ORDER
3. Jesus Morelli, RF: 1-5 (K, P-3, 6-3, 1B, 6-3, RBI)
4a. Chad Noble, C: 1-4 (6-3, 4-3, 2B, 1-3)
4b. Brian Inoa, C: 0-1 (F-7)
5. Pin-Chieh Chen, 2B: 3-4 (1B, BB, F-7, 1B, 1B, 2 R)
6a. Dustin Geiger, 1B: 1-4 (1B, E-4, 5-3, 3-6 FC, R)
6b. Xavier Batista, 1B: 0-1 (6-4-3 DP)
7a. Blair Springfield, LF: 1-3 (K, 1B, K, BB, RBI)
7b. Eduardo Gonzalez, LF: 0-0 (BB)
8. Max Kwan, DH: 2-5 (2B, K, 2B, K, P-3, 2 RBI)
9a. Vismeldy Bieneme, 3B: 1-3 (3-U, 1B, K)
9b. Gregori Gonzalez, 3B: 0-2 (K, K)
1. Luis Liria: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 5 K, 1 WP, 51 pitches (27 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
2. Austin Reed: 2.2 IP, 4 H, 2 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 54 pitches (26 strikes), 4/1 GO/FO
3. Willengton Cruz: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 1 WP, 32 pitches (22 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO
4. Alvaro Sosa: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 11 pitches (8 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
CF Kyung-Min Na E8 – dropped fly ball allowed batter to reach 2nd base safely
Chad Noble: 0-1 CS, 1 PO
LF Eduardo Gonzalez threw out batter-runner 7-4 trying to stretch single into a double
WEATHER: Sunny and breezy with temperatures in the 80’s
They've already clinched a minimum winning percentage of .607 for the month, and that's only if they lose the last 2 games. If they win both, they can push that up to .679. So much for "stumbling" in May. When you're winning over 60% of your games, you're doing baseball well.
If the best walk-off hit possible is a solo home run in a zero-zero game--Eloy did it tonight!
(But maybe it's a grand slam when your team is down three? He didn't do that.)
Number eight for Jimenez. His team is 31-17. Yesterday they scored 17 runs against Lansing. Two weeks ago it was 15 runs against the same team. This is a nice team, South Bend. The Cubs must have had a good draft last year.
Tonight the pitchers were Sands, Brooks and Effross.
He'll be fine. He's not some wimpy young pup.
In all seriousness the Cubs have the fewest amount of games played in the NL which means they're gonna be facing quite the grind later on including 24 games in a row at the end of June and beginning of July so I hope he does get a few days off.
Meh. He only got one hit today. Maybe give him a rest?
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!]
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/
HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC.
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.
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).
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.
AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.
Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!
Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.