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
I love winning! It's, like, better than losing?
You lollygag the ball around the infield. You lollygag your way down to first. You lollygag in and out of the dugout. You know what that makes you? Larry!
Its too bad Warren didnt get to pitch. He would have saved us.
Whoa -- that Contreras play in the 8th looked too much like a "Schwarber" -- nearly crashed into the wall going full speed, with Heyward doing the same.
New rule: if you are a catcher playing LF, and find yourself sprinting after a fly ball in the gap -- stop, let the CF go after it and get ready to play it off the wall.
Cubs have no spark and no life. Pretty boring to watch these days.
I thought trips to Miami were supposed to be fun. This one sucked.
The bottom half of the bullpen now turns close games into blowout losses. Not good.
Once Fowler went to the DL, the team went into the tank. Wonder if he'll get any love this offseason? Probably not.
6IP, 2ER. The last one scored because of another botched Zobrist DP turn.
And now, a bad throw by KB. Sloppy.
What is it with Hammel always starting well and sucking after a couple months?
Ahhh...sad. Lke a few of you here, I saw him play during the '69-'71 seasons. He was the "hot Zobrist" for the club in August/September of '69 while everyone else was fizzling out...
I predict: "They will play hard and if they give the same effort every day, they'll win a lot of games."
OK, boys -- find a way to win today.
There's some BA is missing too, here's all signing bonus BA doesn't have some:
-6 Hockin $241,000 (slot price), 7 Cruz $75,000 (saved $110,00), 8 Ridlings $120,000 (saved $53,800), 9 Robinson $30,000 (saved $132,300), so far the Cubs have saved an extra $297,100
Zobrist (2B), Hayward (CF), Bryant (3B), Rizzo, Contreras (LF), Montero, Russell, Coghlan (RF), Hammel
Also -- despite losing 6 of their last 10, the Cubs picked up a game on both STL and PIT during that period. Weird, given that they swept PIT and were swept by STL.
Also, I'd like to know if there are numbers to back up my suspicion that there are a lot more fast starts than late June romps. This seems like a time where everybody not named Willson Contreras is looking a little tired and/or banged up a bit.
For once, the Cubs got off to a fast start. Seems like I've been waiting for that for 50 years.Everybody is really gunning for this team, too. It's their playoffs.