Rawhide Keeps Them Doggies Movin' at Fitch Park
Dan Vogelbach and Dustin Geiger slugged back-to-back home runs in the bottom of the 8th inning, and the Chiefs had the tying and winning runs in scoring position with no outs in the bottom of the 9th but could not score, as the South Bend Silver Hawks (Diamondbacks Full-Season Class-A affiliate) rode a two-run Jimmy Comerota triple and took advantage of four errors, holding-on to edge Peoria 6-5 on Field #2, while over on Field #3, Ryan Cuneo crashed a three-run home run in the 3rd to stake the Cubs to an early 4-1 lead, but the Visalia Rawhide (D’backs Advanced Class-A affiliate) rallied for two runs in the 8th and three more in the 9th to defeat Daytona 7-5, in Cactus League Minor League game action this afternoon at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ.
While the Daytona Cubs and Peoria Chiefs were in action at Fitch Park, the AAA Iowa Cubs and AA Tennessee Smokies traveled up the Loop 101 Freeway to play the Arizona Diamondbacks AAA Reno Aces and AA Mobile BayBears squads at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort.
Moved down from the Daytona squad to the Peoria squad prior to the game, Cubs 2010 #1 draft pick RHP Hayden Simpson got the start for Peoria on Fitch Park Field #2, throwing 2-2/3 innings and allowing three runs (two earned) on five hits (three singles and two triples) before reaching his pre-planned pitch limit (30). He struck out two and did not issue any walks. His curve ball and change-up were fairly effective, but his fastball was hit hard by several of the Silver Hawks hitters.
Peoria trailed 6-2 going into the bottom of the 8th, but after Jeimer Candelario drew a lead-off walk, Dan Vogelbach crushed his home run over the RF fence and onto the roof of a house on the north side of 8th Street. Dustin Geiger followed the Vogel-Bomb with his own dinger, launching the solo shot beyond the LF fence and onto Center Street.
The Chiefs had a golden opportunity to tie or win the game in the bottom of the 9th, as catcher (ex-3B) Wilson Contreras laced a lead-off double into the LF corner, and advanced to 3rd base on a Shawon Dunston, Jr line-single to center. Dunston moved up a base on a wild pitch (still with no outs), but Delbis Arcila tapped back to the mound, and Jeimer Candelario and Yasiel Balaguert struck out swinging to extinguish the rally-flame.
Meanwhile over on Field #3, RHP A. J. Morris got the start for the Daytona Cubs and threw one shutout inning (10 pitches - 9 strikes). That might not seem like much, but is is significant because Morris missed the entire 2011 season rehabbing from post-2010 shoulder surgery. (The Cubs obtained Morris from the Washington Nationals in the January 2011 Tom Gorzelanny deal, and they must have thought pretty highly of him at the time, because they acquired him despite knowing that he had just undergone shoulder surgery).
After Morris threw his shutout inning, the D-Cubs scored a run in the bottom of the 1st on the strength of a Reggie Golden two-out RBI single that drove-home Pin-Chieh Chen (who drew a walk leading-off the inning, before moving up to 2nd base on a stolen base and to 3rd on a ground out), and then plated three more in the bottom of the 3rd on the Ryan Cuneo three-run HR over the right-centerfield fence.
The D-Cubs held a 4-2 lead after seven, but two pitchers up from the Boise/Mesa squad (Ian Dickson and Tayler Scott) surrendered five runs between them over the last two innings.
Like Peoria, Daytona got the tying runs on base in the bottom of the 9th, but Pin-Chieh Chen and Ronald Torreyes lined out, and 2011 NWL HR champ Paul Hoilman (like the Mighty Casey that he is) struck out (swinging) on three pitches to end the threat and the game.
There are five squads at Minor League Camp, but only four play games, so players assigned to the fifth squad (Boise/Mesa) are dispersed among the four teams that were in action today. (Boise/Mesa will morph into the Cubs Extended Spring Training squad next month).
Here are the abridged box scores from the two games played at Fitch Park (Cubs players only)
FITCH PARK FIELD #2
1a. Trey Martin, CF: 2-3 (1B, 1-3, 2B, R, RBI)
1b. Shawon Dunston, Jr, CF: 1-1 (HBP, 1B)
2a. Eduardo Gonzalez, LF: 1-2 (1B, BB, 4-3, RBI, SB)
2b. Delbis Arcila, LF: 0-2 (K, 1-2 FC)
3. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 1-4 (3-2 DP, K, P-5, BB, K, R, SB)
4. Yasiel Balaguert, RF: 0-5 (6-3, 6-3, K, K, K)
5. Dan Vogelbach, DH: 1-4 (K, 5-3, 6-3, HR, R, 2 RBI)
6a. Rock Shoulders, 1B: 0-2 (P-5, F-7)
6b. Dustin Geiger, 1B: 1-2 (4-3, HR, R, RBI)
7a. Danny Lockhart, SS: 0-1 (BB, 3-U)
7b. Javier Baez, SS: 1-2 (P-4, 1B, CS)
8a. Brad Zapenas, 2B: 1-1 (1B, BB, R)
8b. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 0-2 (K, 3-1)
9a. Wilfredo Petit, C: 1-2 (L-6, 1B)
9b. Wilson Contreras, C: 1-1 (BB, 2B)
1. Hayden Simpson: 2.2 IP, 5 H, 3 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 30 pitches (24 strikes), 3/3 GO/FO
2. Yao-Lin Wang: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 24 pitches (16 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
3. Sheldon McDonald: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 21 pitches (12 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
4. Joe Zeller: 1.2 IP, 4 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, 1 PO, 21 pitches (17 strikes)
5. Charles Thomas: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 19 pitches (12 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
6. Felix Pena: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 6 pitches (5 strikes), 3/0 GO/FO
PEORIA ERRORS: 4
1. 3B Jeimer Candelario - E5 (errant throw with two outs allowed batter to reach base safely and runner on 3rd base to score unearned run)
2. SS Danny Lockhart - E6 (fielding error with two outs allowed batter to reach base safely and runner on 2nd base to score unearned run)
3. C Wilson Contreras - E2 (errant throw on pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner on 1st base to advance to 2nd base and runner on 2nd base to score unearned run)
4. 2B Gioskar Amaya - E4 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
FITCH PARK FIELD #3
1. Pin-Chieh Chen, CF: 0-4 (BB, K, F-8, F-7, L-5, R, SB)
2a. Arismendy Alcantara, 2B: 0-2 (K, BB, 3-U, R)
2b. Ronald Torreyes, 2B: 1-2 (2B, L-4)
3a. Ryan Cuneo, 1B: 1-3 (6-3, HR, 3-U, R, 3 RBI)
3b. Paul Hoilman, 1B: 0-2 (K, K)
4a. Reggie Golden, DH: 1-3 (1B, 2-3, K, RBI)
4b. Brian Inoa, PH: 0-1 (P-4)
5a. Ben Klafczynski, LF: 1-3 (3-U, 1B, 6-3)
5b. Mayke Reyes, LF: 0-1 (F-8)
6a. Anthony Giansanti, C: 0-2 (5-3, 6-3)
6b. Sergio Burruel, C: 1-2 (1B, F-8)
7a. Elliot Soto, SS: 0-3 (K, K, 6-4 FC)
7b. Luis Acosta, SS: 0-0 (BB, R)
8a. Wes Darvill, 3B: 1-3 (F-8, 1B, L-6, PO)
8b. Kenny Socorro, 3B: 1-1 (1B)
9a. Blair Springfield, RF: 1-2 (HBP, 2B, 6-3, R, 2 SB)
9b. Xavier Batista, RF: 1-1 (1B, RBI)
1. A. J. Morris: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 10 pitches (9 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
2. Jose Rosario: 2.2 IP, 3 H 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 36 pitches (27 strikes), 6/1 GO/FO
3. Su-Min Jung: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 26 pitches (13 strikes), 3/2 GO/FO
4. Brett Wallach: 1.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 22 pitches (13 strikes), 0/3 GO/FO
5. Ian Dickson: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 17 pitches (13 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
6. Tayler Scott: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP, 31 pitches (18 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
DAYTONA ERRORS: NONE
DAYTONA CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Sergio Burruel: 2-2 CS
WEATHER: Temperature in the low 80's, overcast, & VERY breezy (expecting rain tomorrow)
When we played the Reds with Chapman, I always thought of it as an eight-inning game. So now other teams have eight innings to try to get a lead against the Cubs. Should be a challenge, assuming three or four Cubs ever start hitting again.
I don't really try to get to know and like these players personally. I'm rooting for laundry, for the most part. Exceptions might be when a player makes trouble in the clubhouse or in the dugout. (Zambrano and Bradley come to mind. Also Papelbon.) But I don't think Chapman is one of those jerks.
Unfortunately, a pretty good summary. It looks like next year Heyward will be getting yet another batting stance adjustment.
The recent good news has been Baez. I'm afraid about the next league adjustment on him, though, which is probably right around the corner.
Bryant I don't worry about too much. Just not seeing the ball well right now. He'll turn it around. Russell's been good with men in scoring position all year and he's 22ish. He'll be fine but next year is likely to be his breakout year.
If Travis' back-to-back-to-back walks cost Hendricks the ERA title, that would really suck.
Edit: "A lifeless loss to a lousy Sox team."
This place is a real downer after a loss to the Sox.
I expect they will go 5-9 games above .500 the rest of the year. 96-98 wins will win the Division.
They should have one more 2-3 week hot streak in them.
However, several players are just "average" for the last month: Zobrist, Ross, Russell, Ceasar. Montero is terrible, plus he cannot throw anyone out. -WAR. Heyward is abysmal at the plate, but a plus in the OF. Still with RISP he has been terrible. KB has not been driving in runs as of late. But Apparently the team is still above average with RISP according to S Sahadev.
I came to that realization tonight. I kept expecting them to play better, but now I realize they aren't going to. They are a .500 team now.
- They have one reliable starting pitcher. Jake's magic is gone, and it doesn't look like it's coming back. Lester has been lousy recently. Lackey's ERA goes up every time he pitches.
- Heyward has been dead weight all year. I can't remember a single series where he was a significant offensive contributor. Not one. Great defense, but but if he were hitting .270 with 10 HR and played average defense, the Cubs would be better off.
new rule...no one's allowed to throw k.bryant a changeup
Team is .500 since early May and is playing like a .500 team. Lack of offense seems to be putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers...and they aren't handling it terribly well.
.500 the rest of the way still may win the division though.
...i hate espn.
nothing like settling into a cubs game to get a few minutes cutaway for an ortiz AB in the 6th inning of the det/bos game.
oh, at least they're doing split screen now...i guess.
I'm liking this rookie Nathan.
Richard DFA'd. Meh...
Throwbacks with fashionable cutouts would be a nice touch.
The next 2 games are nationally televised. I think we dominate tonight, hitting 3 HRs off Shields. Great night for KB to end HR drought facing HR prone pitcher in one of the most hitter friendly parks in the league.
If the ball didn't deflect off the pitcher's mound, the game wouldn't have ended. Montgomery did miss his location though, but if that same contact was made and went in any of direction, good chance of ground out if it doesn't get through.
If it was 1 night later, Chapman would be out there and we probably would be going to extras.
Also, If KB wasn't robbed of a HR, perhaps we would have won. We will never know. Nice play by Melky though.
The comparison isn't Chapman replacing Rondon. It's Chapman replacing Richard (hopefully) in the pen. Chapman's better.