Geiger Blast Can't Counter Pitchers Wild Ride through Fitch Park

Reggie Golden and Jeimer Candelario ripped back-to-back doubles to score one run and Dustin Geiger clubbed a three-run HR onto 8th Street to plate three more, but the Diamondbacks took advantage of eight walks, a HBP, six wild pitches, and two errors to defeat the Cubs 7-4 in AZ Instructional League action this afternoon at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa.

LHP (ex-OF) Matt Spencer had an Outing from Hell in what was his second Instructs game appearance since being converted to a pitcher, allowing two runs on four walks and four wild pitches in just 2/3 of an inning (26 pitches - only eight strikes) in the top of the 5th as the Diamondbacks took a 4-1 lead.

After Dustin Geiger slugged his three-run bomb to tie the score in the bottom of the 5th, RHP Amaury Paulino gave it all right back in the top of the 6th, allowing three runs on two walks, a HBP, a double, and a WP.

Here is the abridged box score (Cubs players only):

1. Zeke DeVoss, 2B: 0-4 (K, 4-3, 6-4 FC, 5-4-3 DP, CS)
2. Danny Lockhart, SS: 0-3 (4-3, 4-3, F-7, BB, CS)
3. Rubi Silva, RF: 0-4 (K, 5-3, 1-3, L-6)
4. Dan Vogelbach, 1B: 0-3 (3-1, F-8, 3-1, BB)
5. Reggie Golden, LF: 1-3 (2B, BB, L-7, F-8, 2 R)
6. Jeimer Candelario, DH #1: 1-2 (2B, BB, E-4, 2 R, RBI)
7. Dustin Geiger, 3B: 1-3 (6-5 FC, HR, 4-6-3 DP, 1 R, 3 RBI)
8. Micah Gibbs, DH-C: 1-3 (K, E-6, 1B)
9. Mark Malave, C-DH: 1-2 (4-3, BB, 1B)
10. Trey Martin, CF: 0-3 (K, F-8, K)

1. Jose Arias: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 31 pitches (17 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO
2. Felix Pena: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 23 pitches (14 strikes), 0/5 GO/FO
3. Matt Spencer: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 2 R (2 ER), 4 BB, 0 K, 4 WP, 26 pitches (8 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
4. Amaury Paulino: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 3 R (3 ER), 2 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP, 25 pitches (13 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
5. Scott Weismann: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K, 1 WP, 25 pitches (18 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
6. Dustin Fitzgerald: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 10 pitches (6 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
7. Tony Zych: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 13 pitches (9 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO

1. SS Danny Lockhart - E-6 (dropped pop fly allowing batter to reach base safely)
2. 2B Zeke DeVoss - E-4 (errant throw attempting to turn inning-ending 6-4-3 DP allowed batter-runner to advance to 2nd base)

1. Mark Malave: 0-1 CS
2. Micah Gibbs: 1-1 CS


WEATHER: Overcast, breezy, and occasional drizzle, with temperatures in the 70’s


DET vs TEX...ratings gold!

also, go ARZ.

John Henry and Larry Luchino on WEEI at 700 AM some may get some new news.

Imagine the angst in Cubdom when Theo stays and they give Ryno the manager job.

As long as the Cubs hire Sleepy Gene Lamont, we're good.

“So Theo is not going to be the general manager forever. Just as if Tito (Francona) had come back for the last two years, would he have gone past 10 years? I can’t imagine that he would have. I think that Theo will. He’s the guy now, he’s been the guy, we’ve had tremendous success. We fell apart at the end of the season. As Larry expressed, we’re upset about it. No fan could be more upset than I am about the result this year. But he’s done a tremendous job for us over the last eight years.''

twitter rumor going around that they have given permission to the Cubs to talk to him.

“There's a certain protocol,’’ Henry said when asked about a team asking for permission to speak with Epstein. “If someone asks permission for a job that's not lateral, you give permission"

As I thought

Is not a welsher... is that politically incorrect?

It was a smart wager on your part Neal.

(And Dutch/Irish by the way)

Where can I find box scores from AZ fall league?

Scouting report on Weismann? And has Rosscup injured himself again?

@GordonEdes Gordon Edes
Henry on Ortiz: As general manager, you have to be dispassionate

Holy shit the Marlins have gone off the deep end...

3rd pic down is allegedly what they'll do after each Mike Stanton, er..Marlin HR

And by around centerfield, they mean that abomination will be behind second base.

GAME ON!!!!!!

Looks like Bolliwood's version of a snow dome. I hope they put an impaled dummy wearing the opposing team's uniform on one of them.

The monochrome logo doesn't look too bad.

OMG. I need to kill myself before that park is unveiled.


"It's what Bernie Brewer thinks he's sliding down after a couple buttons of peyote."

So, naturally, I assume that twirling dolphin flashy abomination was a joke... you are telling me this is for real? Dear god...

Reds moving Chapman to the rotation

Felix Pie elects to become a minor league free agent

Not opposed to bringing him back as a 4th outfielder, defensive replacement next year.

Cheaper and younger than Crash Johnson will be.

I'm not a huge fan of Tony Campana, but I'm not sure I wouldn't take Campana before Pie. Pie is a better defensive player, has slightly better offense, but Campana's base-stealing capabilities are better, and let's face it, if we're going to keep a guy like that around, part of it is for pinch running duties and Campana has the defensive range thing down in his hip pocket as well. We certainly wouldn't have one of them around specifically for pinch hitting duties.

That said, I'm hoping for better than Pie/Campana or Lou Montanez as our depth OF.

Thing is that Campana will still have 2 options left. I'm cool with stashing him in Iowa and letting him be the injury shuttle guy to yo-yo back and forth the next 2 years.

Heck, the new ballpark is supposed to have some super-cool features, like a fish tank behind home plate.
foul ball behind the plate, crack...broken tank
Fan eaten by giant fish

Fanmail from a Flounder?

Here is the full color version.

my 1-hour drive in today they talked only about the Yankees choking and what they'll do this offseason. Nothing about the Tigers or the 2nd round or tonight's Game 5's.


one caller said Yankees should sign Mark Buehrle and that he thinks he'd be a better #1 than Sabathia.

Joey from the Bronx, you're up.

Then after him we've got Pauly from the Bronx, Joey from da Bronx, and Little Joe from the Bronx.

If we can infer from Henry's comments that the Cubs are interviewing Epstein for the president's job, does that mean that he will get to pick a GM?

At that point, a nuts-and-bolts guy like Coppolella--someone Arizona Phil could relate to--might make sense. Here is an interview with Coppolella where he appears very strong in areas where the Cubs are weak, such as minor- and major-league scouting.

Doesn't sound like he's ready for a GM job yet.

Epstein will hire someone he knows or always wanted to work with if that's the case.

Josh Byrnes 2.0 wouldn't surprise me in that scenario...AZ Phil would be go on a suicide watch though if that happens.

I'd love to see Epstein as the President and Logan White as the GM.

Epstein is a numbers guy who has thrived in a pressure cooker that is Boston. Logan White presided over the best modern day collection of Minor League talent as the Scouting Director in LA.

Sounds exactly what Ricketts is after.

There's an interview of White over at MLBTR... didn't impress me much. Kershaw was nice but besides that they haven't hit on a 1st round draft pick since 2003 (12 non-Kershaw picks since then).

White was the Scouting director from 2002-2007. During that time the Dodgers drafted.

James McDonald
Russ Martin
Luke Hochevar x2
Mark Melancon
Javy Guerra
David Price
Ivan DeJesus Jr.
Josh Bell
Paul Goldschmidt

And several other interesting guys. The undoing of that system was the McCourts going cheap and forcing v$ picks once they took over.

So they demoted him? Or is he still in charge of scouting?

If you look at it like that, the Cubs drafted Jake Peavy. Drafting a guy and not signing him isn't doing a good job, it's wasting a pick.

They promoted him to assistant GM.

by Baseball Think Factory dude

not very imaginative...Castro gets picked off 11 times every season over the next 5 years with 21-22 steals every year.

computers tend not to be imaginative...

Doesn't seem to make a great deal of sense regardless. He's hardcoded so many things, what is he projecting, BB/K and HR's? Has he projected all the players and ballparks for the next 5 years so he can calculate OPS+?

In 2003, Prior/Wood/Zambrano/Clement/Estes combined to start 154 games. What two pitchers combined to start the other eight?

I'd guess Juan Cruz started a few.

Cruz started six games, Sergio Mitre started the other two.

I always forget that Mitre exists.

Kerry averaged a cool 111 pitchers per start that year. I guess they don't let a lot of younger guys do that anymore.

Verlander averaged 116 this year, but about a pitch less per inning.

I wouldn't recommend him as your #1 pick in the fantasy draft next year.

3 perfect innings in AFL today, but 0 K's

Vitters had a nice day yesterday 2/4 with 2 RBI's I think

about an hour ago...

People around the game getting idea that, unless something changes, theo will stay with #redsox

I don't think that means anything, but, well, there you go.

I heard the interview with John Henry and Larry Lucchino today with the Boston radio station. My take is that permission for Epstein to talk to the Cubs was given, that the position contains a title above or in addition to GM, and that Epstein will be announced as Hendry's replacement sometime next week or just prior to the start of the World Series.

Just my opinion based on how those two answered the questions they were asked.

That's my impression too at this time. It seems like it is just up to Epstein if he wants to come here or be a free agent in a year, since the Red Sox seem to be leaving him out to dry.

lays out the Dodgers offseason plans, says they need a middle of the order type.

can't imagine they'll be able to do a Fielder/Pujols deal right now, but could be competition.

damn this ARZ/MIL game is good...feels/sounds like playoff baseball...even more-so than the DET/NYY yankees game last night, imo.

with all the blah blah blah about the cubs probably not in the pujols/fielder chase (based on the amount of c.pena love being thrown around) this isn't good news for cubs fans...

"According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today, C.J. Wilson will be "coveted heavily" by the Red Sox and Yankees when he hits free agency this winter."

if the cubs biggest offseason acquisition is a suit then screw everything.

Let the Sox and Yankees fight over Wilson--the Cubs already have a 2-years-younger version of him in Sean Marshall (or at least a guy who has been following a similar career track), and they're afraid to put him in the rotation.

If the biggest acquisition is a suit, that's fine, as long as the GM is looking toward 2013 and not overpaying for mediocre players in 2012.

if marshall could go more than 80-100 pitches without losing velocity he'd probably be banking by now, imo. he's got the stuff to do it, but he hit a wall like a champ when he was starting years ago.

i just hope the cubs new suit doesn't decide giving j.reyes 20m+ a year to play 3rd is a good idea...or the owner decides "we need to rebuild" as if this is the royals, padres, or some other broke-ass team.

But to win as the general manager of the Red Sox? You don't have to be smart to do that.

You have to be breathing to do that.

surprisingly not written by Steve Rosenbloom

Jim Hendry... everyone's favorite zombie.

a bunt with runners on 1st and 2nd is actually a good use of it, and Weeks has been struggling. Then of course so is Kennedy so far this inning.


this game has been awesome...MIL has some awesome fans.

Rooting for Brewers

safety squeeze and NO outs recorded! tie game!


their manager is kirk gibson...this is insanely amusing seeing him use a safety squeeze with a man on 3rd and 0 outs. not calling it stupid, though i wouldn't do it with 0 outs, but having kirk gibson do it is awesome.

and then he doesn't bunt with Aaron Hill...shrug.

-edit- if the bunt was successful, Upton was up with 1st base open and Blanco on deck. That actually makes sense now.

holy crap! MIL wins it...

and it's done by the 2 weakest hitters on the tandum with an error by hank white, in for defensive purposes.


White was only in because Gibson PR'd for Montero earlier. Probably Hank's last game, i.e., who would want him?

I'm almost tempted to root for the Cards now to get two Coast-free championship series. Almost but not quite. Go Phils I guess.

Blanco hit 8 HR's in 112 PA's, .250/.330/.540 and threw out 46% of runners stealing.
Seems like he'll have a job as a backup catcher as long as he wants.

I'd sure take him over the great Koyie "extra 5mph" Hill.

"fuck yeah!" - n.morgan...multiple times.

lulz. TBS just earned $20 billion in fines and at least 100 angry letters. fwiw, morgan probably didn't realize he had a mic over him...he was stepping away from the field reporter and screaming at cheering fans.

it's basic cable, won't be nearly as steep as broadcast channels, it might not be at all actually. The lack of profanity is more because of pressure by advertisers and the moral police.

N. Morgan the hero...

bet he'll be really humble about it.

he's so pumped it's off the charts...and no one wanted to talk to the TBS reporter, but gave time to ESPN and MLB Network crews.

For the second time since 1983.

The descrepancy here is that the Red Sox are adamant that they did not let the information out about Epstein, and Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts is also on record saying they were not going to talk publicly about their GM search. Therefore the assumption is that Epstein is the one who leaked the information to establish his position and force the Red Sox's hand to either re-sign him past the one year remaining on his contract or let him go.


If Epstein does leave for a new job with the Cubs, the consensus is that Boston's assistant GM Ben Cherington will get a promotion. Lucchino and Henry were careful to use Cherington's name on more than one occasion during the radio interview, referring to a team decision that is made on all important issues.

as O's man in charge, will not stay with team.

that the O's plan to replace him with an outdated list of Cubs minor league prospects.

if you don't think Jim Hendry isn't replacing him, you haven't been paying attention the last 5 years. :)

*rings bell*

Recent comments

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  • it's kind of mesmerizing to watch
    should Theo add some Ted Abernathy videos for minor league pitching coordinator's use?

    sadly, Ted passed away in 2004 from complications of Alzheimers. I always loved the Cub bullpen trio of Phil Regan, Ted Abernathy and Hank Aguirre. As a kid, I even worked on both Phil Regan (very quirky delivery) and Ted Abernathy (extreme submarine) imitations when throwing a rubber ball against a wall. It wasn't a good imitation unless I could scrape my knuckles off the ground. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for submariners.

  • HAGSAG: Chris Pieters was sent to instructs to develop his hitting, bunting, and outfield play (he is already a decent first-baseman).  

    Pieters is tall and rangy , a "long-strider" in the same mold as Trey Martin and Rashad Crawford. He is a very patient hitter (unusual for a hitter with his lack of experience) and has an outstanding (almost uncanny) eye at the plate, and he is a fast runner with unusually good baserunning instincts, and he is a good basestealer, too.

  • I doubt we will see Pedro in any more "high leverage" situations this series. With Hendricks and the pen today, we need Bryant-Rizzo-Castro to get going ASAP.

  • One funny thing to see before the game was the two submariner pitchers (David Berg and Corbin Hoffner) playing catch with each other. Both pitchers throw "submarine" even when they play catch, and it's kind of mesmerizing to watch, even for the other players. 

  • CUBSTER: One of the points of emphasis  at "basic" Instructs this year was teaching the position players the art of baserunning and base-stealing, like getting a good primary and seconday lead, reading the pitcher, cutting bases sharply, and different ways to slide to maximize the baserunner's chance to arrive safely. 

  • has some interesting stats/graphs on pitch and strike zones and you can dial up individual games/pitchers. I'd love to see some comments from readers who can interpret this better than I can. I thought the Ump was really inconsistent with a very wide zone. Does this info seem to match up with my eyeball perception? Also, looking at the graphs, Lackey was not throwing as many pitches below the K-zone (certainly more above) while Lester was clearly getting his pitches down and not many above.

  • As I was fearing in my post yesterday, Maddon keeps trotting Strop out against the Redbirds and he constantly fails. I understand the psychology behind this, but in a series where there is a finite lock on who moves on, why does he keep riding the wrong horse?

  • AZ Phil: Agree, this must have been a really fun game to watch. There was a lot of base stealing going on. Are the pitchers not holding runners or is the catching still a work in progress?

  • Cuzzi has long been known as having the biggest strike zone among all umpires.

  • AZ Phil, give me a scouting report on Chris Pieters since he has become a 1B/OF.

  • I think it's probably hard to adjust to an ump's zone mid-game, as least for hitters. Pitchers can locate to an ump's zone, but hitters have minimal time to react.

    But, whatever. Umps are going to miss calls. Let's beat up on the non-Lackey starters.

  • Watched a little of Mets-Dodgers.

    Jason deGrom -- oh, my.

  • Cubs 3-4-5 hitters are 0-21 so far in the post-season.

    Let's change that in a big effin' way tomorrow, boys.

  • Considering how players reacted it seemed pretty accurate high and wide (to righties), but not so accurate low and in. I thought the strike zone by the ump was awful, but it was consistent and the Cubs never adjusted.

    Rizzo and Bryant need to have good at bats. They are really looking outclassed in these two games.

  • that game sounds fun as hell.

  • I was just wondering the same thing. I'd rather not see it at all. If it's inaccurate, it's a bad viewer experience. If it's accurate, it shows some shitty calling by the umpire.