Cubs Rally for Two in 8th to Claim Victory
Danny Lockhart drilled an RBI single to right to drive-in Dustin Geiger from 3rd base with the tying run, and Shawon Dunston, Jr scored the go-ahead run (the eventually winning run) on an errant pickoff attempt at 3rd base, as the Cubs rallied for two in the 8th to edge the Angels 4-3 in AZ Instructional League action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa.
The Angels took a 2-0 lead in the top of the 2nd inning when catcher Carlos Ramirez took Cubs starting pitcher Jose Arias deep for a two-run HR over the LF fence.
The Cubs tied it up in the bottom of the 6th, as Dan Vogelbach tripled off the top of the right-centerfield fence just to the right of the “Green Monster” (Batter’s Eye) with one out, Reggie Golden followed with an RBI double off the LF fence, and Dustin Geiger knocked-in Golden with an RBI single to CF.
Watching Vogelbach hustle around the bases for his triple brought to mind a man running for a bus that was pulling away from the stop. The only thing that would have added to the picture would have been if Vogelbach had been carrying a briefcase and an umbrella. But for a big man, Vogelbach runs pretty well.
The Angels took back the lead in the top of the 7th on a two-out RBI double by Abel Baker, before the Cubs plated the game-tying and game-winning runs in bottom of the 8th.
Two more Cubs pitchers headed for the Arizona Fall League got a tune-up in today’s game, as Marcus Hatley and Chris Carpenter each threw an inning. Both pitchers will be working out of the Mesa Solar Sox bullpen. (The AFL begins play next Tuesday).
Long & lanky 6’3 LHP Christopher Pieters made his pro debut in today’s game, throwing a 1-2-3 11-pitch 5th inning (4-3, F-8, F-8). Pieters is all arms & legs, and has a similar pitching style as that of Cubs Dominican LHP Willengton Cruz.
A native of Curacao, Pieters signed with the Cubs this past summer as a 16-year old during the International Signing Period for a reported $350K bonus. He turned 17 last week.
As has been the case for much of Instructs, the three umpires working the game were “wired” and in communication with an umpire instructor sitting in the Observation Tower behind home plate. The instructor can provide the young arbiters with real-time teaching moments as may be necessary during the course of the game, although the umpires and the instructor also occasionally meet face-to-face between innings to discuss matters of importance.
In Cubs Instructs roster news, 17-year old catcher Alberto Mineo has returned home to Italy. This was planned in advance and had nothing to do with anything that transpired at Instructs (and in fact Mineo has been very impressive). He will return to Fitch Park next Spring and will attend Extended Spring Training April-June before likely being assigned to the AZL Cubs.
Here is the abridged box score (Cubs players only):
1. Rubi Silva, RF: 0-3 (K, 4-6 FC, F-8)
2. Javier Baez, SS: 1-3 (K, 1B, K, PO)
3. Rafael Lopez, DH #1: 0-3 (3-1, 4-3, K)
4. Dan Vogelbach, 1B: 2-3 (1B, 3B, K, R)
5. Reggie Golden, DH #2: 1-3 (6-4-3 DP, 2B, K, R, RBI)
6. Dustin Geiger, 3B: 1-2 (K, 1B, HBP, R, RBI, SB)
7. Shawon Dunston, Jr, CF: 1-3 (6-3, P-3, 1B, R)
8. Danny Lockhart, 2B: 1-3 (1-3, K, 1B, RBI)
9a. Yaniel Cabezas, C: 1-2 (6-3, 1B)
9b. Justin Marra, C: 0-1 (F-8)
10. Garrett Schlecht, LF: 0-2 (K, BB, K)
1. Jose Arias: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 38 pitches (22 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
2. Marcus Hatley: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 15 pitches (9 strikes), 0/2 GO/FO
3. Chris Carpenter: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 GIDP, 21 pitches (16 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
4. Christopher Pieters: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 11 pitches (6 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
5. Tarlandus Mitchell: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 7 pitches (6 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
6. Amaury Paulino: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 6 pitches (4 strikes), 0/2 GO/FO
7. Luis Liria: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 8 pitches (5 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
8. Andrew McKirahan: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 11 pitches (7 strikes), 0/3 GO/FO
CF Shawon Dunston, Jr - runner thrown out 8-6-5 trying to stretch double into triple
ATTENDANCE: 34 (including cubs.com beat writer Carrie Muskat)
WEATHER: Partly cloudy & breezy with temperatures in the 90’s
it's day old news, and it's got nothing to do with the cubs, but ichiro signed a $2m deal with MIA (with a $2m option for 2017).
neat. 41 years old and damn close to 3000 hits.
also, rain delays suck.
take that giants
I think that if a team objects to the 1-game wildcard playin game so much, they could just win the pennant and avoid themselves the trouble.
Per Jesse Sanchez at mlb.com, Cubs reportedly have signed 20-year old Cuban OF Eddy Julio Martinez for $3M bonus.
BLOCK: Of course any advantage is an advantage. An MLB, NBA, or NHL team getting the extra game at home in a seven game series is an advantage, I just don't think it is enough of an advantage for winning a division and/or having the best record in a conference or league over the course of an 82-game season (NBA and NHL) or 162 game series (MLB).
TEX takes the opening game from TOR (@TOR) 5-3.
TOR lost bautista + donaldson in-game due to injuries...TEX lost beltre...dunno if any will be lingering issues leading to missed games.
Ride the Kid Magic! Schwarber hadn't homered in a long time before last night.
Greg Maddux was 8-18 in his rookie season. Kyle has the 8 wins down pat.
Think Baby Maddux.
Prof. Harold Hill's THINK system at work.
Kyle is on the far left.
I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.
Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.
That was good!
Well said. On one hand, I thought the HBP was a bad baseball play -- down 4 runs, put a runner on for a red-hot Fowler. On the other hand, they needed to do something -- I hadn't thought about the warning/pitching inside point. Is Hurdle that smart? He does not strike me that way. By the way -- not clear which fan base you are referring to in your "first" 3rd point.
My unsolicited opinions on topics covered in this thread:
1. I hate the fact that after 162 games, a team could be out after 1 game. However, I think the system is pretty close to perfect right now. 2 of 3 isn't feasible unless they shorten the regular season, and it ices the division winners for way too long. This creates excitement, and rewards the division winners.
Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.
Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.
How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?
Call me lost.
Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.