Concepcion Goes Five But Giants Rally to Edge Cubs

Gerardo Concepcion threw five innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on six hits (all singles) and a walk with four strikeouts and two wild pitches, but the Giants rallied for three runs off two relievers and edged the Cubs 5-4 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Indian School Park Field #1 in Scottsdale, AZ.

This was Concepcion’s third Extended Spring Training appearance. He threw 36 pitches in his first outing and 69 in his second, before upping his pitch count to 88 today. Over 11.1 IP at EXST, Concepcion has allowed seven runs (six earned) on 14 hits and four walks, with 11 strikeouts, three wild pitches, and a 10/12 GO/FO.

Concepcion is technically on the Daytona Cubs 7-day Disabled List, but he looks to be 100% healthy (as evidenced by his 88-pitch outing today).

On the offensive side of the ball, Trevor Gretzky reached base three times on two singles and a walk.

SS Javier Baez had a poor game all around, committing two errors (one fielding and one throwing) and striking out twice (both times swinging at slow curve balls). Baez appeared to be hyper-aggressive at the plate and in the field today.

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

1. Shawon Dunston Jr, CF: 1-4 (K, 1B, 1-3, 6-3, RBI)
2. Brian Inoa, 2B: 2-4 (4-3, 4-3, 1B, 1B, SB, PO)
3a. Javier Baez, SS: 0-3 (K, K, 6-3)
3b. Carlos Penalver, SS: 0-1 (K)
4. Dan Vogelbach, DH #1: 0-3 (3-1, 6-3, BB, F-8, R)
5a. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 1-3 (F-7, K, 1B, R)
5b. Mark Malave, 3B: 0-1 (K)
6a. Neftali Rosario, C: 1-2 (P-3, 1B)
6b. Wilson Contreras, C: 0-2 (K, K)
7a. Yaniel Cabezas, DH #2: 0-2 (F-9, K)
7b. Garrett Schlecht, PH-DH: 1-2 (1B+E7, K, R, RBI)
8. Yasiel Balaguert, LF: 1-2 (1B, P-4, F-9 SF, R, RBI)
9. Trevor Gretzky, 1B: 2-2 (1B, 1B, BB)
10. Delbis Arcila, RF: 0-3 (K, 6-3, K)

1. Gerardo Concepcion: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 2 WP, 1 GIDP, 88 pitches (57 strikes), 7/3 GO/FO
2. Ethan Elias: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 17 pitches (11 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
3. Hunter Ackerman: 1.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 23 pitches (15 strikes), 0/1 GO/FO
4. Jose Arias: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 22 pitches (16 strikes), 2/2 GO/FO

1. SS Javier Baez - E-6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
2. SS Javier Baez - E-6 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely and unearned run to score)
3. 3B Mark Malave - E-5 (errant throw attempting to double runner off 2nd base after line-drive out allowed runner to advance to 3rd base)

Neftali Rosario: 1-4 CS
Wilson Contreras: 0-1 CS


WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 80’s


Phil, I see Jose Arias had his first outing. How does he look? Thanks.

Thu, 04/19/2012 - 4:03pm — Hagsag

Phil, I see Jose Arias had his first outing. How does he look? Thanks.


HAGSAG: Arias looked great in his first inning (1-2-3 10-pitch inning with two strikeouts), then got hit a bit in the add-on bottom of the 9th, although he was throwing strikes consistently in both innings.

BTW, Hunter Ackerman labored through his one inning of work, and probably wouldn't have finished it except for some stupid Giants baserunning.

Re: Hayden Simpson
I think he's done. Sitting mid-80s again this spring.

It's disappointing for prospect fans, but is it really a surprise or noteworthy that Starling, Baez, and Nimmo have been held back in XST by their teams?
Klaw: I would have sent Baez out, but the other two don't surprise me.

Re: Possible draft strategies
I think the late first/sandwich rounds will include some overdrafts of college players or JC guys who'll sign for less than slot, allowing teams to shift money to HS guys later on. Junior college arms like Cory Jones and Dylan Baker are rising on boards in part because of this. (Also, they both sit low to mid 90s as starters.)

Re: Casey Coleman
He's an up-and-down guy/emergency starter.

Re: Starlin Castro's early SB totals (Is he getting faster, reads getting better, or just getting fortunate?)
He's not getting faster, I can promise you that much.

Re: Baez
I see no evidence of "maturity issues." Massive overreaction.

Re: Samardzija's control
Even if he is really a new guy on the mound, there are going to be some bad outings along the way.

Re: Dusty not playing Mesoroco
The best possible outcome for Reds fans right now is that Dusty plays himself out of the job. He's lost it.

the problem with mesoroco is that he has to play the field...and ryan hanigan isn't that bad with a bat...leaps and bounds better with D and under a 2 year contract (cheap).

he should probably be in AAA playing everyday if he's supposed to take over at catcher and do things besides being a target to throw to.

Signed: C Nathan Maldonado (re-signed)
Placed on 7-day DL: RHP Matt Loosen, 3B Matt Cerda, OF Reggie Golden, RHP Marcus Hatley, 2B Edgar Gonzalez

anyone got info on Torreyes? hasn't played since April 14th according to his game log on

from a fresh twitter update in the TCR twitter box, he's in and playing DH tonight.

on that note, Torreyes in the lineup tonight and DH'ing.

T. Wood for Iowa, Dae-eun Rhee for Tennessee

1. Szczur-CF, 2.Torreyes-DH, 3.Perez-RF, 4.Rohan-3B, 5.Jones-1B, 6.Bonne-LF, 7.Silva-2B, 8.Noble-C, 9.Alcantara-SS

DeVoss 2b, Chen cf, Cuneo 1b, Hoilman dh, Zapata lf, Easterling rf, Davis c, Darvill ss, Zapenas 3b. Wells p

B.Jackson CF, Gonzalez LF, Valbuena 3B, Rizzo 1B, Castillo C, Cardenas 2B, Sappelt RF, Tolbert SS, T. Wood P.

Does Rizzo have 2 more HR's today?

Rizzo: 2 run HR in first (with 2 outs); Solo HR to lead off the 4th.

3-2 I-Cubs ahead of the Isotopes, end 4.

He's obviously racking up some gaudy power numbers so far. Even for the PCL, that's a damn good April (and clearly not over yet). Still, there's no place to put him on the big league roster for now, and nothing at stake for the Chicago Cubs this season except "pride" (or a draft pick, on the other hand), so might as well let him pile up those stats for a good long time.

Yeah, I agree. The only reason he's not here is team control and saving super-2 $$$ ... considering the Cubs cannot compete this year. He'd have LaHair on the bench in 2-seconds flat if the Cubs were contenders. Or even pretenders.

Makes me wonder if players like Rizzo and Jackson struggle with resentment because they are clearly being denied MLB time to prevent them from collecting free agency dollars too early, etc. it's like a double whammy: you are ready to play MLB level, but we are denying you the opportunity to start building your MLB career and delaying your payday since we suck and cannot compete. Bam.

Rays are infamous for it, but players get over it pretty quick. I think as long as your clear about what they need to show before getting called up and communicate with them, they'll get it.

I don't know if it'll be in the Cub Way manual, but presumably they want players to have a certain number of minor league plate appearances before being called up regardless of how hot or good they look.

1685 (PA's) for Rizzo so far and 1406 for Jackson, but I don't know what they have in mind. 1000 is a number I recall being thrown out before, but not sure if it applies here.

You might be able to argue Rizzo is ready for MLB (obviously 1B is not currently a problem), but I would think BJax needs to seriously work on cutting down his K's before coming up to start in the OF. Not sure if you can do that with a 24 yr old at this point, but I'm certainly not in a hurry to watch him K 1 of 3 PA's up here.

BJax's production is definitely not going to push the front office the way that Rizzo's is right now. If BJax gets here first it will be because of service time and because Marlon Byrd continues to hit the way he has (or they trade him).

Yeah, you guys are dead on. BJax looked pretty damn sweet in Spring Training but those nagging K's keep rearing their heads! And now he's cooled down. Still I think they'll both be up permanently by the end of the year - when service time and super two's are no longer an issue. Byrd is a goner ASAP if possible, but we all know that!

I'll go on a limb: after June 1 we'll see Jackson.
His 0 for 4 last night dropped his avg. to .254 from .277. He;s still got an OBP of .362, slugging .508.

Yeah AZ Phil laid it out a few threads back. Basically to get extra year of control AND avoid super two status, Jackson can come up around All Star break. Rizzo (and Castillo I believe) not until August.

Hawks lose in OT playoffs heart-wrecker

Bulls lose at Miami and about to blow home court

Cubs: nope

Hell I would have taken a White Sox victory today. Nope.

it's in the Twitter box, but bears repeating:

@BobVorwald: Ok, so not the greatest day in Chicago sports history.....


Folks, the Jorge Soler situation is about establishing residency. It has nothing to do with baseball or July 2. No X-files shit going on. "


Recent comments

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  • based on what SF has been doing every other year lately, getting access to the postseason playoffs seems to be what's important. bring on dat short series!

    that said, skipping the sudden death 1-game WC would be nice from here on out.

  • I know what you are saying, but I feel compelled to point out that there's no such thing as luck, curses, etc. The Cubs this year have as good as a chance as the Pirates to move on to the next round. If the Cubs proceed to the next round or not tomorrow, it will not be because of luck, but because one team outlasted the other. When/if the Cubs are lucky enough to make it to the league series, that's where they may find their biggest challenge. The Dodgers have a good, deep pitching staff.

  • debuting the new format 1 game "sudden death" WC matchup at yankee stadium does a perfect job of showing the intense emotion and drama this game can be.

    that said, i'm ready to not see yankee stadium or hear fans at yankee stadium for another 5 and 1/2 months. at least i don't have to sit through the braves with their "tommy hawk chawp" this postseason.

  • i'd like to know why the internet radio feed of the game (which is always delayed by a few seconds at best) is almost a minute faster than the ESPN cable TV coverage. wtf?

  • i dont know what order they'll be in, but i pretty much expect fowler/schwarb/rizzo/bryant/montero/castro/lastella/arrieta. any change at all (aside from the first 4 guys) wouldn't shock me, though. coghlan is still a wildcard in the lineup joe could always march d.ross out there with very slow arrieta pitching.

  • Yup. Have to agree. Baseball, like golf, certainly has that psych component for the player. There is no real reason why a fielding position should affect a batting average. The Cubs are 106 years over due for a little luck. Don't you guys think so? Maybe the rookies can bring some dumb luck on.

  • probably stacking capable lefties vs cole while keeping the "hot" castro in the game. fwiw, he's 1-6 lifetime with 0 bb/k vs cole (double).

    i chalk bryant's issues at the plate while playing OF up to coincidence so far.

  • I will call your dead horse, "Trigger".

    In one game, when anything is possble, I am glad that Joe Maddon is our Manager.

    He knows the stats better than all of us. It would seem, IF La Stella gets the start at 3B, it will be only up to the point that they were to get the lead (crosses fingers). From everything I have read, the game will be managed like a hoops game: offense/defense. So expect La Stella to be out of the game by the 5th. This team is incredibly deep which is so surprising. We never woulda thunk it.

  • i don't know what their roster plans are, but j.herrera is out there practicing with the team.

    i can't imagine him making any roster, though. dude had 4 PA the entire month of sept. him being a good dude to be around while keeping the clubhouse loose seems to be his main role at this point.

  • I know it's my own personal dead horse to beat --but Bryant has been a lousy hitter when playing the OF this year. Given that it's his first playoff game, I really hope they keep him in his natural position and don't mess with his routine.

    Lousy as in 8-for-45 with one XBH and no HR. Small sample and all that -- but why take the chance?

  • hard to tell what's up given they'll probably want to stack as many good lefties into the lineup as possible.

    castro being a bit hot doesn't help things. if he was still cool they'd probably stick la stella at 2nd and call it a day.

  • Madden won't announce lineups but Stella is practicing at 3rd and Bryant in LF today. I'd rather see Bryant at 3rd but I guess Stella has been hotter than Coghlan.

    /edit. Though I guess they could be practicing this with the idea Stella would come in as a PH then double switch him to 3rd base and Bryant to LF. Hope that's the plan instead

  • I really like the sound of that idea about expanding the AFL to ten teams. Each org. gets to field more players.
    They should do that anyway, regardless of Adv. Instructs.

  • Dallas Beeler, Corey Black, David Garner, Pierce Johnson, Steve Perakslis, James Pugliese, Duane Underwood Jr, and Rob Zastryzny threw early-morning bullpen side-sessions at Riverview yesterday.  

    Underwood threw last, and received specific one-on-one instruction from pitching coach Mike Mason. 

  • HAGSAG: There are only five advanced instructs squads left, and presently the only "co-op" team operating is the Angels/Cubs.

    The league was originally established as a "parallel" league to the AFL (a sort of "junior AFL"), for players too advanced for traditional ("basic") instructs but who were unable to get placed on AFL rosters due to AFL player-limits.

  • He is but I would think it'd be better to start out with offense and then bring in Jackson and LaStella once they have a lead. Stella has very good PH #s too.