Bogaerts Knows How to Whistle, Blows Out Three-Run Blast at Fitch Park
Jair Bogaerts crushed a 420-ft HR over the CF fence to cap a four-run 5th inning and James Pugliese (four innings of one-hit shutout ball with five strikeouts) and three relievers combined to throw a three-hit shutout, as one squad of Cubs blanked one squad of Giants 4-0 on Field #2, and Javier Baez and Jeimer Candelario each doubled and drove-in two runs, Dong-Yub Kim doubled and tripled and scored two runs, Brian Inoa doubled and tripled and knocked-in two runs, and Wilson Contreras belted a solo HR, but Stephen Yarrow blasted a solo home run and Hector Mercedes hammered a three-run shot to propel the other squad of Giants to victory over the other squad of Cubs by a score of 11-9 on Field #3, in a Memorial Day Weekend Cactus League Extended Spring Training doubleheader extravaganza played this morning at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ.
Both games were seven-inning affairs.
Jair Bogaerts was the PTBNL in (what turned-out to be) the rather convoluted Theo Epstein compensation trade that saw the Cubs send RHRPs Chris Carpenter and Aaron Kurcz to the BoSox, and is the brother of Boston's #2 rated prospect, SS Xander Bogaerts. But unlike his brother, Jair is a big dude (6'2 240+) who could be Rock Shoulders' twin brother, a lumbering corner INF who has played mostly 3B (and none too well, either) since joining the Cubs, while hitting 189/302/243 with only two XBH (both doubles) and just one RBI through 17 EXST games (43 PA) coming into today's action.
Meanwhile over on Fitch Park Field #1, five Cub pitchers (Bryce Shafer, Amaury Paulino, Roderik Pichardo, Loiger Padron, and Ramon Garcia) threw an early-morning four-inning “sim” game prior to the EXST twin-bill.
In EXST Cubs roster news, RHP Felix Pena and OF Yasiel Balaguert have been promoted to Peoria, and RHP Rob Whitenack (June 2011 TJS rehab) has been moved-up to Daytona.
Cubs VP of Player Personnel Oneri Fleita has been at Fitch Park all week, getting a first-hand look at the Cubs Extended Spring Training squad, so it probably didn’t hurt Balaguert’s cause that he went 5-7 with a HR and five RBI in EXST games this past Monday and Wednesday. He was hitting 338/384/492 in 23 EXST games (73 PA). Some of you may remember that the 19-year old Balaguert as one of two Cuban defectors signed by the Cubs last December 7th (RHP Carlos Martinez was the other one).
The solidly-built Balaguert has played mostly RF and LF at EXST (he has a decent arm but doesnt have the range to play CF), and shows occasional power but with a body & a swing that should produce home runs at a more substantial rate as he matures. He was a teammate of highly-regarded Cuban OF prospect Jorge Soler on the Cuban Junior National Team.
RHP Felix Pena put up a 5.68 ERA and 1.21 WHIP with 6/11 BB/K in 19.0 IP (10 games) at Extended Spring Training prior to getting the call-up to Peoria.
Fleita also had a chance to watch Rob Whitenack throw “lights out” at Maryvale on Tuesday, when the right-hander tossed six innings of three hit ball at the Brewers, throwing 56 pitches (45 for strikes)
Here are the abridged box scores from the two EXST games played at Fitch Park today (Cubs players only):
CUBS SQUAD “A” LINEUP:
1. Trey Martin, CF: 0-3 (5-3, F-8, K)
2. Carlos Penalver, SS: 0-3 (L-6, F-8, K)
3. Eduardo Gonzalez, LF: 0-3 (K, E-6, F-9, SB)
4. Rock Shoulders, 1B: 1-2 (1B, K, BB)
5. Xavier Batista, RF: 0-2 (BB, L-7, F-7)
6. Dan Vogelbach, DH #1: 0-1 (K, BB, BB, R)
7. Danny Lockhart, 2B: 0-3 (P-6, 1-3, 6-3)
8. Wilfredo Petit, C-DH: 1-3 (4-3, 2B, K, R, RBI).
9a. SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
9b. Justin Marra, C: 1-2 (1B, K, R, RBI)
10. Jair Bogaerts, 3B: 1-3 (F-8, HR, F-9, R, 3 RBI)
11. Trevor Gretzky, DH #3: 1-1 (BB, 1B, SB, CS)
CUBS SQUAD “A” PITCHERS:
1. James Pugliese: 4.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 5 K, 1 GIDP, 54 pitches (34 strikes), 4/3 GO/FO
2. Brian Smith: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 PO, 13 pitches (7 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
3. Ethan Elias: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 13 pitches (6 strikes), 3/0 GO/FO
4. Pete Levitt: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 20 pitches (15 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
CUBS SQUAD “A” ERRORS: 1:
1B Rock Shoulders - E-3 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
CUBS SQUAD “A” CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Wilfredo Petit: 0-1 CS
CUBS SQUAD “B” LINEUP:
1. Shawon Dunston Jr, CF: 2-4 (3B, 1B, P-4, 4-3, 2 R, RBI)
2. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 1-3 (6-3, BB, K+WP, 1B, 3 R, RBI, 2 SB)
3. Javier Baez, SS: 1-4 (5-3, F-9, 5-3, 2B, 2 RBI, SB)
4. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 1-3 (F-8, 2B, BB, K, 2 RBI)
5. Dustin Geiger, 1B: 1-4 (5-3, 5-3, 1B, P-6)
6. Kevin Encarnacion, RF: 0-2 (BB, 4-3, 4-3, CS)
7. Wilson Contreras, C: 1-3 (F-7, HR, K, R, RBI)
8. Garrett Schlecht, LF: 1-3 (2B, K, F-7, R)
9a. Neftali Rosario, DH #1: 0-0 (HBP)
9b. Dong-Yub Kim, PH-DH: 2-2 (2B, 3B, 2 R)
10a. SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
10b. Brian Inoa, DH #2: 2-2 (3B, 2B, 2 RBI)
CUBS SQUAD “B” PITCHERS:
1. Jose Arias: 3.1 IP, 4 H, 5 R (4 ER), 2 BB, 3 K, 1 HBP, 1 HR, 63 pitches (43 strikes), 5/1 GO/FO
2. David Henrie: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 25 pitches (20 strikes), 1/3 GO/FO
3. Ryan Hartman: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 7 pitches (5 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
4. Carlos Martinez: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 1 HR, 23 pitches (14 strikes), 1/0 GO/FO
CUBS SQUAD “B” ERRORS: 2
1. SS Javier Baez - E-6 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely – eventually scored unearned run)
2. P David Henrie - E-1 (errant throw on what should have a 1-6 FC allowed runner to reach 2nd base safely – eventually scored unearned run)
CUBS SQUAD “B” OUTFIELD DEFENSE:
CF Shawon Dunston Jr - runner thrown out 8-4-2 trying to score from 1st base on a double
WEATHER: Sunny & breezy with temperatures in the 70’s
Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.
With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.
it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.
It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.
Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.
That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.
I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.
Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...
These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.
No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.
a 60" TV with slow-motion replay and multiple looks on that replay helps...a lot...
it's one thing to shy away like he did the 2nd time, it's another to bail out of the box on a called strike. that happened in the 1st one he pulled away from. he misjudged that one by a foot or so...
Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.
Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.
Soler BB acumen and plate awareness is excellent. Not unusual for even the best players to react as if they were about to hit them, "even though they weren't that close" from your vantage point sitting on your deck, or wherever.
soler vs inside breaking balls is scary.
he's had 2 inside curve balls today where he reacted as if they were about to hit him even though they weren't that close...one he bailed out of the box on, it was a called strike.
j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.
so is him actually getting 2 hits in a game (2 doubles!)...first time he's even been on base 2 times in a game since 9 games ago on his 3/4, 1bb day.
im ready for him to at least look like a 2-slot hitter since he's gonna be slotted there no matter what he does.
That Heyward move to avoid Bryant's ball hit at him was a thing of beauty too.
9 pitches in and this game already rules.
HR, double...bryant's turn (who came out to a Kris Kross song for some horrible, horrible reason).
...2 run inning...zoobrest hitting streak at 14.
First time I saw Herrera was yesterday. He took like 100 pitches, fouled off a ton off Lester.
Very nice young player and perfect leadoff guy.
Obviously not Phil. But he mentioned this on Wednesday.
"Dominican Summer League (DSL) Opening Day is Saturday June 4th, so probably about 8-10 pitchers and position players presently at EXST in Mesa will be sent to the Cubs Dominican Academy (probably sometime this week) and be assigned to either DSL Cubs #1 or DSL Cubs #2."
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