Matt Garza Stones Bees at Fitch Park
Matt Garza threw four innings of shutout ball, allowing two hits and no walks with six strikeouts, Adrian Cardenas slugged a 420+ foot three-run HR over the CF fence, Welington Castillo drove-in three runs with a two-run double and a sacrifice fly, and Blake Lalli had four hits, leading the Iowa Cubs to an 8-1 victory over the Salt Lake Bees (Los Angeles Angels AAA affiliate) on Field #3, and Casey Coleman threw four innings of one-run ball, but knuckleballer Joe Zeller was tagged for four runs, as the Arkansas Travelers (Angels AA affiliate) defeated the Tennessee Smokies 5-1 on Field #2, in Cactus League minor league game action this morning at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ
Because Garza started the AAA game, Casey Coleman (who was supposed to start for Iowa today) was moved over to Field #2 and started in the AA game instead.
This was “getaway day” for the Cubs four full-season minor league teams, so game time was 9 AM. The Cubs other two full-season squads (Daytona and Peoria) played their games on the road versus Angels affiliates at Diablo Park in Tempe.
A fleet of rental trucks packed with gear stood ready-to-roll in the parking lot, and both games were played at a faster pace than is typical of Spring Training games at Minor League Camp. The players, managers, coaches, and trainers all seemed anxious to get out of Arizona and get going with the regular season, but the start of the game on Field #3 was delayed a few minutes because Matt Garza arrived late.
The one squad from Minor League Camp that won't be leaving town is the Boise/Mesa group, which morphs into the Cubs Extended Spring Training (EXST) team this week.
The EXST squad will consist of about 60 players, including players who failed to make the Peoria Chiefs' final roster cut but who will stay ready to replace any injured players at Peoria or Daytona, younger and less-experienced players who are expected to play at Boise or for the AZL Cubs when the short-season leagues begin play in June, and injured players who are in various stages of rehab.
Several Boise/Mesa (EXST) players saw game action for Iowa or Tennessee in today's games.
In roster news involving the Iowa Cubs, OF Jim Adduci was moved down to Tennessee from Iowa and (somewhat surprisingly) 3B Marquez Smith was released, as the I-Cubs got down to the AAA 24 player-limit. Also, it appears likely that SS Junior Lake (strained back) will open the Southern League season on the Tennessee 7-day DL. If so, he will probably remain at Fitch Park until he is ready to play again.
Here are the abridged box scores from the two games played at Fitch Park (Cubs players only)
FITCH PARK FIELD #2
1. Jim Adduci, LF: 0-4 (F-8, L-8, F-8, E-5)
2a. Elliot Soto, SS: 0-3 (E-9, F-9, 1-3, R)
2b. Javier Baez, SS: 1-1 (1B)
3a. Jae-Hoon Ha, CF: 0-3 (6-3, 6-3, K, RBI)
3b. Shawon Dunston, Jr, CF: 0-1 (4-3)
4a. Rebel Ridling, 1B: 1-3 (1B, F-9, 3-U)
4b. Ryan Cuneo, 1B: 0-0 (BB)
5. Matt Cerda, 3B-DH: 0-4 (P-3, K, K, 6-4-3 DP)
6a. Jonathon Mota, DH: 0-3 ( F-7, F-9, 4-3)
6b. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 0-0 (BB)
7a. Michael Burgess, RF: 1-3 (F-9, 1B, 4-3)
7b. Jeffrey Baez, RF: 0-1 (6-4 FC)
8a. Michael Brenly, C: 1-1 (BB, 1B)
8b. Luis Flores, C: 0-1 (6-3)
9. Nate Samson, 2B: 0-3 (L-7, 4-3, 6-3)
1. Casey Coleman: 4.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 55 pitches (40 strikes), 6/2 GO/FO
2. Brian Schlitter: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 22 pitches (15 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
3. Joe Zeller: 2.0 IP, 5 H, 4 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 29 pitches (17 strikes), 2/1 GO/FO
4. Marcus Hatley: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 10 pitches (7 strikes), 0/2 GO/FO
TENNESSEE ERRORS: 1
SS Elliot Soto - E6 (two-base throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely)
TENNESSEE CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Luis Flores: 1 PB
TENNESSEE BASERUNNING ADVENTURES:
Michael Burgess was thrown out 9-5 trying to advance from 1st to 3rd on a single to RF with no outs in the bottom of the 5th
FITCH PARK FIELD #3
1a. Dave Sappelt, RF: 2-4 (F-8, 1B, F-7, 1B, R, CS)
1b. Delbis Arcila, RF: 0-0 (BB)
2a. Adrian Cardenas, 2B: 1-4 (F-8, 4-3, K, HR, R, 3 RBI)
2b. Danny Lockhart, 2B: 0-1 (P-6)
3a. Anthony Rizzo, 1B: 0-1 (BB, K, SB)
3b. Xavier Batista, 1B: 2-3 (1B, E-6, 1B, R)
4. Blake Lalli, DH: 4-5 (K, 1B, 1B, 1B, 1B, R, RBI)
5a. Edgar Gonzalez, SS: 2-2 (3B, 1B, 2 R)
5b. Carlos Penalver, SS: 0-2 (4-6 FC, BB, 4-6 FC)
6a. Welington Castillo, C: 1-1 (F-7 SF, 2B, 2B, 3 RBI)
6b. Taylor Davis, C: 0-2 (F-9, 5-3)
7. Josh Vitters, 3B: 2-4 (2B, 1B, E-4, K)
8. Eduardo Gonzalez, LF: 1-4 (F-8, 4-3, 1B, 4-3, R, SB)
9. Trey Martin, CF: 1-4 (K, K, 1B, 6-3, R, RBI)
1. Matt Garza: 4.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K, 49 pitches (32 strikes), 4/2 GO/FO
2. Nate Robertson: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 17 pitches (12 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
3. John Gaub: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 11 pitches (5 strikes)
4. Ryan Rowland-Smith: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 15 pitches (9 strikes), 2/0 GO/FO
5. Ryan Searle: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, 28 pitches (12 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
NOTE: Searle inning was stopped with one out & bases-loaded after he reached max pre-planned pitch limit
6. Ramon Garcia: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 8 pitches (3 strikes), 3/0 GO/FO
IOWA ERRORS: 2
1. LF Eduardo Gonzalez - E-7 (fielding error on single to LF allowed batter to advance an extra base)
2. P John Gaub - E-1 (errant pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed base-runner to advance to 2nd
IOWA BASERUNNING ADVENTURES:
Josh Vitters was thrown out 4-6 trying to take an extra base on a dropped pop fly in short CF
WEATHER: Sunny, cool, and VERY breezy, with temperatures in the 60’s
if they dont win at least 130 games this season they can pack it all up, turn wrigley into a concert venue, and move the damn team to san jose.
I see where catcher Cael Brockmeyer was promoted to Tennessee a couple of days ago, to fill a roster spot vacated by David Freitas, recently promoted to Iowa. Caratini is the other catcher at Tennessee.
They've already clinched a minimum winning percentage of .607 for the month, and that's only if they lose the last 2 games. If they win both, they can push that up to .679. So much for "stumbling" in May. When you're winning over 60% of your games, you're doing baseball well.
If the best walk-off hit possible is a solo home run in a zero-zero game--Eloy did it tonight!
(But maybe it's a grand slam when your team is down three? He didn't do that.)
Number eight for Jimenez. His team is 31-17. Yesterday they scored 17 runs against Lansing. Two weeks ago it was 15 runs against the same team. This is a nice team, South Bend. The Cubs must have had a good draft last year.
Tonight the pitchers were Sands, Brooks and Effross.
He'll be fine. He's not some wimpy young pup.
In all seriousness the Cubs have the fewest amount of games played in the NL which means they're gonna be facing quite the grind later on including 24 games in a row at the end of June and beginning of July so I hope he does get a few days off.
Meh. He only got one hit today. Maybe give him a rest?
Good thing the Cubs have five left-handed batters in the lineup. Velasquez is just tearing thru the righties [edit - doesn't seem to faze Bryant!]
ben zobrist gets to ride up front tonight cause he's a good guy at sports.
cubs with a 5 run lead and a lackey shutout through 3ip \m/
HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC.
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.
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).
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.
AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.