Inoa Hits for the Cycle at Talking Stick

Brian Inoa hit for the cycle and Dustin Geiger ripped two RBI doubles, leading a split squad of EXST Cubs to a 6-5 victory over the EXST Diamondbacks in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Whirlwind Field at Salt River Fields at the Talking Stick Resort east of Scottsdale, AZ.


Justin Hilt and Wagner Mateo homered for the Diamondbacks.


The game was extended an extra inning to allow all of the pitchers who were due to throw today to get their scheduled work.



I can’t remember the last time I saw somebody hit for the cycle in an Extended Spring Training game, so what Brian Inoa did today is quite rare. The 20-year old switch-hitting Dominican catcher tripled to right-center in the top of the 2nd inning, smacked a solo home run over the right-centerfield fence in the 4th, executed a picture-perfect hit & run single into the vacant "four-hole" in the 6th, and smoked a double off the LF fence in the 8th. On the negative side, Inoa also committed two errors (an overthrow on a stolen base attempt that led directly to an unearned run scoring, and a dropped foul pop-up).


This is Inoa’s first season in the U. S. after making his pro debut last year in the Dominican Summer League with DSL Cubs #2 (AKA the “Bad News Cubs”), where he hit 279/356/369 in 60 games (203 PA), mostly as a DH. In just 26 games behind the plate for DSL Cubs #2 in 2010, Inoa committed a whopping 11 errors and allowed ten passed balls. (He is what I guess you might call an "offensive-first" catcher).


Here is the abridged box score from today’s game (Cubs players only)


LINEUP:
1. Vismeldy Bieneme, 2B: 0-4 (3-U, F-7, F-7, 5-3 SH, K)
2. Eduardo Gonzalez, RF: 1-5 (K, 6-3, K, F-7, 2B, R)
3. Marco Hernandez, SS: 1-4 (3-U, 1B, 4-3, BB, P-1, SB)
4. Brandon May, 3B; 2-5 (P-4, K, 1B, 1B, 4-3, RBI)
5. Dong-Yub Kim, LF: 1-5 (K, 5-3, 4-6 FC, F-9, 1B, RBI)
6. Brian Inoa, C: 4-5 (3B, HR, 1B, 2B, 4-6 FC, 3 R, RBI)
7. Dustin Geiger, DH: 2-3 (2B, P-4, BB, 2B, R, 2 RBI)
8. Xavier Batista, 1B: 1-4 (1B, 5-3, F-9, 5-3, RBI)
9. Oliver Zapata, CF: 1-3 (P-6, K, BB, 1B, R, SB)


PITCHERS:
1. Austin Reed: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 1 PO, 42 pitches (29 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO
2. Colin Richardson: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 25 pitches (16 strikes), 2/3 GO/FO
3. Charles Thomas: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 17 pitches (12 strikes), 3/2 GO/FO
4. Ramon Garcia: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 1 HR, 17 pitches (13 strikes), 2/3 GO/FO
5. Larry Suarez: 1.1 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 GIDP, 18 pitches (15 strikes), 3/0 GO/FO


ERRORS: 2
1. C Brian Inoa - E2 (overthrow at 3rd base on stolen base allowed the runner to score an earned run)
2. C Brian Inoa - E2 (dropped pop fly in foul territory extending batter’s AB)


CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Brian Inoa: 0-2 CS, 2 E (see above)


ATTENDANCE: 6


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


 

Comments

Az Phil,

Have you seen Brett Jackson? Bruce Miles says Oneri Fleita told him he's in Arizona with you right now.

no response...

Again, today, Bruce Miles reports,

"As I tweeted yesterday from Boston, farm director Oneri Fleita tells me Brett Jackson is in Arizona rehabbing his left-hand injury and getting at-bats in a controlled situation. He should be ready to rejoin Class AA Tennessee later this week.

Anyone know where Jackson would be doing this????

Submitted by navigator on Tue, 05/24/2011 - 11:50am.
no response...

Again, today, Bruce Miles reports,

"As I tweeted yesterday from Boston, farm director Oneri Fleita tells me Brett Jackson is in Arizona rehabbing his left-hand injury and getting at-bats in a controlled situation. He should be ready to rejoin Class AA Tennessee later this week.

Anyone know where Jackson would be doing this????

==================================================

NAVIGATOR: Probably in a "sim game" at Fitch Park. They had one today on Field #2 before the regularly-scheduled EXST game on Field #3.

For those not familar with how a sim game works, it's a bit more than "live" BP, but something less than an intrasquad game.

The batting cage is usually in place and sometimes the pitcher throws from behind a screen (especially if the pitcher is rehabbing from an injury). The pitcher throws a pre-determined number of pitches (usually 15 per "inning," although it could be as many as 20 or 25) and then sits down while the other pitcher throws a pre-determined number of pitches (again, usually 15 per "inning"). If only one pitcher is involved, he will throw his pre-determined number of pitches and then sit down on the bench for 10 minutes to replicate the time it would typically take his team to get through it's half inning of offense.

The hitters (usually four) rotate into the cage and take an AB, remaining there until they either walk, strike out, or put the ball in play, or an AB could be terminated mid-count if the pitcher reaches his pre-determined pitch count before the batter has walked, struck out, or put the ball in play.

If the batter walks or puts the ball in play, he takes 1st base and the pitcher throws out of the stretch, just like he would with a runner on base. The runners on base ahead of the hitter run the bases just like they would in a game, but the defense doesn't necessarily try to throw them out, although they might, depending on how many position players are available to play a position in the field.

Pitchers who are not doing anything else usually shag balls hit to the outfield, flipping the ball to the pitcher or coach stationed behind 2nd base who collects balls and puts them in the ball collection bucket (like they do in batting practice). Then the bucket is brought to the mound when it's full and the balls are dumped into a shopping cart located behind the mound, where the coach assigned to supervise the pitcher will take a ball out of the shopping cart and toss it to the pitcher after a hitter has put a ball into play.

In the case of a hitter rehabbing from an injury (like Brett Jackson), the sim game would be in the general form of a game, but the ABs would be controlled in the sense that B-Jax could hit first each "half-inning." And because he would be hitting in a group with maybe (at most) three other position players, he would get at least four ABs in just two full innings, but perhaps as many as five or six AB (depending on how many balls are put into play and how many hitters hit each half-inning), whereas it would take him at least four innings to get four AB in an Extended Spring Training game, even if he hits each half-inning.

He can rest or maybe play CF for a half-innng if he doesn't want to take another AB right away, or he can lead-off one inning and maybe run the bases, or hit 2nd or 3rd in the next inning. And then maybe play CF again for an inning.

And they don't keep score.

So other than having a snack of cookies & milk mid-game, it's a lot like a tee-ball game for six-year olds.

Back when Randy Poffo was in high school, the Poffos were our neighbors. He was a big Cub fan and a tremendous ahtlete at Downers Grove North High.

Some of you may enjoy this read-->
Randy (Macho Man) Savage's dream was to make it to the Majors

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers...

Cool article.

Here's his scene in the first Spiderman movie.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GTUiMAB5CQ0

DFA'd, pretty good numbers vs. lefties in his career, so he's sure to latch on somewhere.

5.2ip 3h 1bb 9k 0r

rich hill (BOS)...lulz.

The way you posted that made it seem like it was a start! I am not getting too excited about 6 appearances. Best case scenario, I think, he turns into a decent lefty reliever.

What was the deal that was around in which Hill became untouchable? It's been too long for me to remember

Brian Roberts deal, Jumbo.

Hill, Ceda, Fuld and Pie were the untouchables.

Wow! I had to think hard to remember Ceda.

Random cub question.....historical variety:
How on earth was Steve Swisher the Cubs lone all-star candidate in 1976? Can anyone figure this out?

Because they needed a Cub and the team sucked, so they picked him.

OK...brilliance aside Tito, what I mean is why Swisher ahead of:
Bill Madlock
Rick Monday
Jose Cardenal

I mean...yikes.....

I brought this up...becasue while at work, we were reminiscing about the earliest Cub teams we remember.....this is mine sadly.

Trying to bring value to the board, I wasn't trying to be facetious. That was my recollection of why Swisher was picked. I didn't look up any mid-year stats for '76.

Why Steve Swisher?

In short, too many big names/great years from the 3B's and OF's and lousy competition at catcher.

I wondered that myself at the time, even though he had a good first half (for him) that year -- was batting .268 at the All Star break (July 13), though only 3 HR & 25 RBI (his avg. was as high as .292 as late as June 19). Bob Boone, the other NL reserve catcher, had .308/4/40 at the break, so the competition at catcher wasn't particularly stiff. The other usual '70's All Star catchers weren't doing that well that year: Manny Sanguillén was .295/1/18 and Gary Carter was .239/4/21. Sanguillén was at the end of his All Star run ('71, '72 & '75) and Carter was only in his 2nd full season (although was an All-Star in '75, his rookie year). Even the starting catcher, Johnny Bench, was having a down year: only .234/9/45 at the break.

Why not Bill Madlock (3B), Rick Monday (OF) or Jose Cardenal (OF)?

The NL All-Star 3B's were Pete Rose (starter), Mike Schmidt and Ron Cey (who hit .319/12/46 in the 1st half that year) and Madlock was "only" hitting .309 at the break with less power -- he scalded the ball in the 2nd half at a .377 pace.

How about the outfielders? The starters (voted in by the fans) were George Foster, Greg Luzinski & Dave Kingman. The reserve outfielders were:
César Cedeño .297/14/48 & 142OPS+ (28 SB)
Al Oliver .360/12/49 & 178OPS+
Ken Griffey, Sr. .340/4/50 & 152OPS+
Bake McBride .345/3/18 & 145OPS+

Rick Monday .286/15/47 & 152OPS+ (3 SB)
Jose Cardenal .303/6/32 & 120OPS+

Clearly, Monday was hitting well enough from an OPS+ standpoint but his average was significantly lower than the competition and Cedeño (whose BA was closer) was a flashier & sexier pick at the time.

i think mine was '81....DeJesus and Buckner. Dejesus hit a triple in the first game I recall going to, I thought that was cool.

Think it was against the Phillies.

Recent comments

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  • 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. 

    Arizona Phil 2 min 10 sec ago view
  • 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).  

    Arizona Phil 12 min 1 sec ago view
  • 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.

    The E-Man 54 min 49 sec ago view
  • AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

    Hagsag 5 hours 40 min ago view
  • Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!

    Hagsag 5 hours 41 min ago view
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 15 hours 22 min ago view
  • With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.

    johann 18 hours 20 min ago view
  • it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.

    crunch 18 hours 32 min ago view
  • It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.

    Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.

    The E-Man 18 hours 41 min ago view
  • That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.

    I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.

    Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...

    These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.

    No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.

    The E-Man 18 hours 46 min ago view
  • a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...

    it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...

    crunch 19 hours 5 min ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 19 hours 41 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 19 hours 58 min ago view
  • Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.

    The E-Man 20 hours 42 sec ago view
  • soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.

    he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.

    crunch 20 hours 18 min ago view
  • j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.

    crunch 20 hours 25 min ago view