Triple City in Seven Run Cubs 6th Trips A's at Fitch Park
Marco Hernandez, Jesus Morelli, and Yaniel Cabezas ripped run-scoring triples to highlight a seven-run 6th, as the EXST Cubs rallied from an early 4-1 deficit to defeat the EXST Athletics 9-6 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa this morning.
EXST games usually are played as nine inning games where the home team takes an AB in the bottom of the 9th even if it is ahead, but this morning’s game was stopped after eight innings when both the A’s and Cubs ran out of available pitchers.
Angel Guzman (2010 shoulder surgery rehab) got the start for the Cubs and went more than one inning for the first time since his surgery. The right-hander breezed through his first inning of work, throwing an 11-pitch 1-2-3 1st inning (F-7, K, 4-3), but then he began to falter in his second inning (F-8, BB, 2B, 4-3, BB), throwing 20 pitches (but only ten strikes) before being relieved with two outs, one run in, and runners at the corners.
Gooz was quite obviously frustrated with his inability to throw strikes in the 2nd inning, cursing himself when he bounced his final pitch (a curve) into the dirt on a 3-2 pitch for ball four. While he has his fastball velocity up to 92 MPH, he also has control lapses from time-to-time, especially if he has to throw more than a dozen pitches in an inning. So don’t expect to see Angel Guzman in Chicago anytime soon.
Here is today’s abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1. Vismeldy Bieneme, 2B: 3-4 (3B, K, 1B, BB, 1B, R)
2. Yaniel Cabezas, C: 2-2 (BB, BB, 1B, 3B, BB, R, 3 RBI)
3. Wilson Contreras, 3B: 1-4 (5-4 FC, P-4, 2B, HBP, K, R)
4. Marco Hernandez, SS: 1-4 (P-5, 4-3, 3B, K, R, RBI)
5. Dong-Yub Kim, DH: 1-4 (K, 1B, K, K, RBI)
6a. Reggie Golden, RF: 0-1 (BB, F-8)
6b. Eduardo Gonzalez, RF: 1-2 (1B, K, R, RBI)
7. Chad Noble, 1B: 1-4 (6-4-3 DP, K, E-5, 1B, R)
8. Jesus Morelli, LF: 1-3 (BB, 4-3, 3B, F-9, R, 2 RBI)
9. Kyung-Min Na, CF: 1-4 (6-3, 1B, E-4, K, 2 R, RBI)
1. Angel Guzman: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 1 K, 31 pitches (17 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO
2. Alvido Jimenez: 2.1 IP, 6 H, 3 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 50 pitches (31 strikes), 3/2 GO/FO
3. Alvaro Sosa: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 33 pitches (19 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
4. Dustin Fitzgerald: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K, 19 pitches (16 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
5. Amaury Paulino: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 2 R (2 ER), 4 BB, 0 K, 2 WP, 30 pitches (12 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
Yaniel Cabezas: 0-1 CS
WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90’s
With Paredes moving to 3B, how do you see playing time shaking out between him and Galindo? Do you think Galindo gets starts at 1B? Galindo is more of a prospect than Paniagua, right?
Phil, your knowledge of the Cubs Minor League system is unbelievable.
This kid would be a key piece in a trade for a pitcher, imo.
This might be old news but Hammel was on ESPN 1000 and said that he changed his diet and workout routine over the off season and tweaked his delivery so it'd be more repeatable so he'd have a better second half. So...some cause for optimism anyway.
CHILDERS: RHSP Dylan Cease and LHSP Bryan Hudson are probably the top two SP prospects in the organization right now.
LHSP Jose Paulino has electric stuff (91-94 MPH fastball with sinking action and a mid-80's slider), but he also has trouble commanding it.
RHP Jose Albertos (2015 IFA - Mexico - $1.5M bonus) just turned 17 in November, and his fastball already sits at 95-96. He also throws a curve and a change-up, and is fairly advanced for a kid his age.
AZBOBBOP: Most of 2016 draft picks will get assigned to either Eugene or AZL Cubs, but the Opening Day Eugune roster will probably be almost 100% from the Extended Spring Training squad roster (pending the arrival of draft picks).
I think I can probably tell you which pitchers and players at EXST are in contention for roster slots at Eugene and which are in contention for slots with the AZL Cubs - AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW - (listed alphabetically):
* bats or throws left
# bats both
Eloy Jimenez atop the leader board for minor-league home runs in the Cub system, with seven. Tied with Balaguert and Vogelbach, two 24-year-olds. Jimenez won't be 20 until late November. Leads the Midwest League in SLG and OPS. Maybe he'll get promoted to the Myrtle Beach squad that visits Woodbridge, VA, in June or Frederick, MD, in August.
Watched two Pelican games at Frederick the other week. Was most impressed by Stinnett and Happ. Happ may swing harder than Javier Baez, though more compactly. (Also got to see Brockmeyer hit a bomb.)
E-MAN: Jose Paniagua isn't a string-bean, but I wouldn't say he necessarily bulked-up during the 2015-16 off-season either, He led the DSL Cubs in HR and doubles in 2014, and he showed XBH power when he arrived in Mesa last year, leading the AZL Cubs in HR, doubles, and RBI in 2015. It's just that he has taken his HR power to a new level this year.
Paniagua displayed plus-HR power in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games in March, and that got him a slot on the South Bend Opening Day roster. But he was sent to EXST after only six MWL games.
More on the Cub Way.
Martinez is one of my least favorite pitchers in baseball. I'd love to see a game like yesterday's against him.
Send Soler down!
Awesome thanks AZ
Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.
Ben Zobrist is very enjoyable to watch!!!!!!
given that he seems to only be throwing low 90s these days rather than the 93-96mph he used to throw, along with his wildness issues this year, he may end up passing through.
i dunno if something is wrong with him physically or his past shoulder issues has rendered him what he currently is, but he's been throwing a lot of sliders he can't control well and his fastball isn't as sharp. even when his slider wasn't working in a game he was still throwing a lot of them.
Any scuttlebutt on where Neil Ramirez gets traded?
He seems better than some of the relievers on competitive teams. He ought to bring more than the waiver fee.
My guess? Toronto.