Rockies Edge Cubs at Fitch Park
Xavier Batista ripped a single, an RBI triple, and a solo home run to stake the Cubs to a 2-1 lead through five innings, but the Rockies scored two in the 6th and two more in the 7th and then held-on to edge the Cubs 5-4 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.
In 25 EXST PA, X. Batista is hitting 435/500/782 with one HR, one triple, three doubles, six RBI, and only two K. He was the last cut from the Peoria squad at the end of Minor League Camp, so he could be in-line for a promotion to Peoria in the near future.
RHP Starling Peralta got the start for the Cubs and threw three strong innings, allowing one run (earned) on three hits and a walk, with four strikeouts. His fastball was topping out at 95 MPH.
Javier Baez went hitless in four at-bats, striking out twice (both times swinging). He is now 0-17 with eight strikeouts since hitting for the cycle last Monday versus the Angels.
However, the two balls Baez put into play today were a towering fly ball to the deepest part of the ballpark caught up against the fence by the Rockies CF, and the other a fly ball to left that required a diving catch by the LF.
Here is the abridged box score from today’s game (Cubs players only):
1a. Trey Martin, CF: 0-3 (1-3, K, 6-3)
1b. Kevin Encarnacion, CF: 0-1 (P-6)
2a. Pierre LePage, 2B: 1-3 (2B, 5-3, P-2, R)
2b. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 1-1 (1B+E6)
3. Javier Baez, SS: 0-4 (K, F-7, K, F-8)
4a. Xavier Batista, LF: 3-3 (3B, HR, 1B, 2 R, 2 RBI)
4b. Jair Bogaerts, LF: 0-1 (F-7)
5. Dan Vogelbach, 1B: 0-4 (F-8, F-8, K, F-7)
6. Yasiel Balaguert, RF: 1-4 (F-7, 5-3, 1B, 6-3, R)
7. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 1-3 (1B, 4-3, K)
8. Wilson Contreras, C: 1-3 (F-7, 6-3, 1B, RBI)
9. Anthony Giansanti, DH #1: 1-3 (1B, F-9, F-8)
10. Trevor Gretzky, DH #2: 0-3 (6-U FC, K, F-8)
1. Starling Peralta: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 42 pitches (25 strikes), 0/4 GO/FO
2. James Pugliese: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 GIDP, 22 pitches (13 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
3. Felix Pena: 2.0 IP, 4 H, 4 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 HR, 1 WP, 45 pitches (27 strikes), 3/3 GO/FO
4. Roderik Pichardo: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 GIDP, 25 pitches (13 strikes), 3/1 GO/FO
CUBS ERRORS: 3
1. 3B Jeimer Candelario - E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
2. 3B Jeimer Candelario - E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
3. 1B Dan Vogelbach - E-3 (throwing error on sacrifice bunt attempt allowed batter to reach base safely and unearned run to score)
CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Wilson Conteras: 2-3 CS
WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90’s
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.