Giansanti a Ringer Ding-Dinger for AZL Cubs

Anthony Giansanti slugged a two-run double off the CF Batter's Eye to cap a three-run 1st inning and Ryan McNeil and three relievers combined to throw a shutout, as the AZL Cubs whitewashed the AZL Diamondbacks 3-0 in Game #1, and then Giansanti hammered a lead-off walk-off HR off the base of the scoreboard in the bottom of the 7th that gave the Cubs a 1-0 victory in Game #2, as the Cubs took both ends of a twilight-night doubleheader at HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZ this evening. 



Game 1 box score


Game 2 box score


The versatile multi-positional (C-1B-3B-RF-LF) Giansanti is on a rehab assignment from Peoria, after being placed on the Chiefs DL with a sprained ankle last month. He played 3B in Game #1 and 1B in Game #2 tonight, and with the depletion of the AZL Cubs roster in recent days and weeks thanks to call-ups and injuries, having Giansanti in the lineup (even if he is a "ringer") is just what the Cubs need right now.  


Two position-players from DSL Cubs #1 have also been called-up this week to provide some much-needed roster depth for the AZL Cubs, although both OF Jeffrey Baez and C Wilfredo Petit were in Mesa previously (Baez at AZ Instructs last year and at Extended Spring Training this year, and Petit at both Minor League Camp and Extended Spring Training this season). Both players were assigned to DSL Cubs #1 when the Dominican Summer League season began play in June (prior to the start of the AZL season) after spending two months at EXST.  


Iowa Cubs RHP Rafael Dolis (placed on the I-Cubs 7-day DL in July with a sprained left knee) continued his rehab in Game #1 and threw 1.1 IP (24 pitches) of shutout ball (although he did allow a single and a double), and Peoria RHP Ben Wells (sprained elbow) opted to postpone TJS in the hope that his elbow would heal with rest, and it apparently has paid-off as the prized pitching prospect returned to action tonight after missing almost three months of action. The burly right-hander threw one inning of shutout ball, and while he did walk one and struggled with his command a bit (19 pitches - 11 strikes), he also struck out the side. 


18-year old RHP Ryan McNeil (Cubs 2012 3rd round draft pick out of Nipomo HS - Nipomo, CA) got the start in Game #1 and threw four innings (58 pitches - 40 strikes), allowing no runs on five hits and no walks, with two strikeouts and a nifty pick-off at 1st base.    


RHP Jasvir Rakkar (Cubs 2012 26th round draft pick) had the most-impressive outing of the night, getting the save in Game #1 after throwing 1.2 IP of shutout ball with four punch-outs. Rakkar has not allowed a run over the course of seven innings (and five AZL appearances) so far. The 21-year old Canadian attended SUNY - Stony Brook, and pitched for the Seawolves in the College World Series prior to signing with the Cubs.   


With tonight's doubleheader sweep, the AZL Cubs extended their lead in the AZL Wild Card standings to three games over the AZL Giants with only five games left to play, although two of the five games remaining are against the Giants.  


If the Cubs can hold their lead in the AZL Wild Card standings, they will qualify for the AZL playoffs as the Wild Card team and would play their 1st round game on the road versus the team with the best record (which right now is the East Division leading AZL Athletics). The winner of that game would then play the winner of the other semi-final game (probably AZL Dodgers versus AZL Rangers) in a winner-take-all (and loser-go-home) Championship Game the next day. (The AZL doesn't mess around).  


In fact, the AZL Cubs and the Boise Hawks are the only two Cubs minor league affiliates likely to qualify for the playoffs this year, and both are in pretty good shape to do so. It's just too bad that the AZL Cubs (should they qualify) would be playing without a lot of the guys (Vogelbach, Soler, Almora, Saunders, Martin, et al) who put them in a position to qualify for the AZL playoffs in the first place. 

Comments

so...

whatever happened to that whole...starlin castro extension thing?

did i miss something? seems like a rumor popped up, then strong rumors confirming it "after details are worked out"...then nothing.

They announced that the terms (years and $) were agreed to, but it would just take a week or two to write-up all of the rest of the language in the contract, etc. and finalize it, sign it, etc. No mystery.

Castro's agent-"but Aram got a no trade and opt out clause....."

Theo starts laughing

Al astutely points out that the Cubs must go 9-7 the rest of the way on the road to at least avoid tying the franchise mark for worst road record. For comparison's sake, they're currently 3-16 on the road since ASB.

http://www.bleedcubbieblue.com/2012/8/22/3261...

They better hurry and find some major league pitching if they plan on avoiding that record.

How bad was Alcantara's injury? He hasn't played for a long time.

I never heard injury specifics. But Bruce Miles said he was told that Alcantara was done for the season when they promoted Baez to take his spot.

http://fullcount.weei.com/sports/boston/baseb...

We have in our contracts with certain key management and coaching people incentives for finishing in the top one, two or three in on-base percentage. So we still focus on it. There hasn’t been a change in philosophy, there’s just been a change in execution.”

Red Sox rank 24th in majors in walks this year according to the article.

24th in walks, but 12th in OBP, FWIW.

Older scouting report on the new guy:

Scouting Report: Socolovich's fastball sits between 88-92 mph. He uses his fastball predominantly. Also occasionally mixes in a 86-87 mph slider and a low-to-mid 80s changeup. Socolovich had to have a TJ surgery early in the summer of 2005, missing the entire season. Took time to recover from surgery through 2006. Needs to sustain his fastball better. Good bullpen potential, still very raw. Demonstrates success against weaker hitters, but seriously struggled even at the Intermediate A-ball level when given a shot.

http://www.soxprospects.com/players/socolovic...

hmmm, miguel socolovich...name like that reminds me of a joke about tonto kowalski; ever hear it?

Had me thinking about Carlos Mencia's bit about Jessica Alba.

waiting

"Rays minor league second baseman Ryan Brett, right-hander Charles Cononie and left-hander Justin Woodall were all suspended 50 games each for failing a drug test."

woo...team speed (lulz). all 3 teammates. meth and "amphetamines" (most likely adderall)

guy seated next to a babe on a plane, they chat & she mentions her fetishes for native americans & poles...my name's so & so, she says, what's yours?

?

Ha! Love it!

aha, now I remember.

Classic

Tonto Goldstein....But you can call me Bubba!

see above...

Anyone following the Texas / Minn happenings? Why did Diamond throw behind Hamilton's head? The announcers and everyone knew it was gonna happen. Anyone know the history / situation?

oswalt hit mauer.

diamond has good enough control to put a fastball in his back, imo...and probably the opinion of the ump who threw him out without warnings.

Aaah. Got it. Thanks!

I'm going to watch the Cubs at Coco's Outback in Amsterdam tonight at 20:00. There is a coffee shop next door. Is this heaven? No, it's Amsterdam.

I missed the final game of the Holland Series of Honkbal Hoofdklasse, Holland's top baseball league, by one day. Doh. Honkbal.

If you didn't get a "Honkbal Hoofdklasse" T-shirt I will be incredibly disappointed.

I think Dewayne Kemp is back playing over there again. He was in the Cubs system for a time a few years back.

Go to Van Gough museum at some point, see some art.

Cleanse your soul of the tragedy drama that takes place in "the ivy covered burial ground"

And, feel free to enjoy your favorite hashish at a cafe while you are there. That will also help ease your Cubs misery.

Ease my what?

Niiiice

I just moved back from Amsterdam earlier this year after living there for over a year. Skip the coffeeshops in Rembrantsplein it's tourist central. But if you want to stay in the area Smokey is probably the best. The Grey Area in the Jordaan area (fairly close to the Anne Frank house) is run by a few Americans and is cool but small. Barney's on Harlemerstraat (also in the Jordaan, closer to Amsterdam Centraal) is well known and they also have a restaurant (a separate place across the street) that's pretty good and they let you smoke inside. The Rookery is right off the flower market and is good too.

As to bars, Coco's is pretty decent. Some of the bars in the "Spui" area are the oldest in Amsterdam. Drink some genever. It's awful. Check out de dekderde suster in the red light district if you get a chance. It's a bar where the beer used to be brewed by nuns and is quite good (and a pretty chill place usually).

Go to the Van Gogh museum but go early or late the lines get really long, skip the Rijksmuseum (it's under construction and most of it is closed off). There's a tapas restaurant right around there called Pompa. I lived above there, ate there often, really good. And defintiely walk around Vondel Park.

Post any questions if you have any, happy to answer.

At Barney's restaurant you can smoke weed? I just watched a lady completely lose her shit at the huge intersection west of Rembrandtsplein. Arms in the air, head down, hair covering face, screaming something. Done. I went to Basjoe today, the people were irritating. Went to Katsu in de Pijp the other night, laid back. I briefly looked for Grey Area last time I was here, I'll give it a shot again. Looks like I'm going to Jordaan tomorrow. And maybe the zoo.

Yeah, it's Barneys Uptown. The coffeeshop itself is fairly well regarded. The Jordaan in general is a cool area to walk around. Depending on how experienced you are with the stuff the iceolater hash can be interesting. Or you can end up losing your sh!t like that lady you saw. The big problem with the coffeeshops in the city center is that they're crowded and pricey. The Grey Area is on Singel and Oud Leliestraat. If you see a sculpture of a huge head you're there.

The Anne Frank house is worth visiting but buy tickets in advance if you want to go. Tickets are for specific times. Otherwise you'll spend half the day in line especially in tourist season.

Warning on the Zoo - it's pricey. IIRC it's 30 euros a person. If you're in that area and head a little bit further out check out the Windmill Brewery (Brouwerij 't IJ). Really good beer but off the beaten path. It's on the 14 tram I believe.

It's a touristy area but I thought the best place to people watch was in Leidseplein. A few of the bars there are open until 4 am too. If you're into clubs there a bunch there as well.

Barney's, ftw.

Couple of beauties in the pitching boxscore for the AZ Cubs yesterday.

Dillon Maples (SP) - 1.2 IP, 0 H, 4 R, 4 BB, 1 K, 2 WP
Chad Martin (RP) - 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 WP

Bring 'em up!

4 runs on no hits?

SO Cub.

Mather batting lead off today

Does

Not

Compute

W. T. F. ?

Whiskey
Tango
Foxtrot

claimed off waivers by Dodgers, 48 hours to make a deal.

doubtful it happens, Red Sox are gonna want some good players and Dodgers aren't going to give up too many and take on that contract.

Clearly a blocking move, to keep him away from the Giants.

Hope remains for SF to deal for Soriano!

the latest is that the deal is pretty close to happening, possibly with Beckett, Crawford and Punto involved.

Recent comments

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  • "The Boston Red Sox were banned from signing any international players for the next year and had five of their teenage prospects declared free agents on Friday after a Major League Baseball investigation showed they circumvented signing-bonus rules last year, a source familiar with the situation told Yahoo Sports."

    https://www.yahoo.com/sports/news/source-red-sox-b...

    Rob Richardson 3 hours 7 min ago view
  • The thing with Heyward is its not just free agency. He is way under performing his career #s. He's making the same % of contact but his soft contact is much higher and hard contact much lower than all his previous years so there is something very specifically going on this year causing the issues. Chances are he will eventually get back to his previous #s and it's better to get the slump now and get that hot run later but I wish I knew what is different about this year. He's either just not seeing the ball as well or a swing change is causing it.

    johann 3 hours 22 min ago view
  • Only 3 pitches for Leathersich. Not much of a rehab outing.

    Thanks for the reporting Phil.

    QuietMan 3 hours 34 min ago view
  • He's the nastiest pitcher I've seen in awhile. I'm gonna give them all a mulligan on this one.

    Coghlan's strike out was more disappointing. He was fighting off a lot of pitches and not swinging at crap, and on the last pitch, he swung at stuff he was laying off, and struck out.

    And Heyward, too. I don't blame Heyward - I blame free agency. I hate it. You almost never get a valid return on the investment.

    I look forward to the day when ball players own the teams. The current economics are not sustainable.

    Old and Blue 4 hours 35 min ago view
  • Oh, I'm sure you're right. He's not 27-27 in saves for nothing. But, man, I hope they learned last night that he didn't throw a single pitch in the zone to KB, Contreras or Baez, and they all just kept swinging.

    billybucks 6 hours 43 min ago view
  • Sounds like a much better game than last night's fiasco in Flushing.

    Old and Blue 7 hours 29 sec ago view
  • I'm pretty sure it looks like a sweet pitch on the way in. How many sinkers like that are there at 98 mph? I agree that they should just do a Lackey and stand their with their bat on their shoulders until he throws a strike next time, but I can see how that's hard to do.

    The bullpen, on the other hand, is a mess, and Heyward is starting to piss me off.

    Old and Blue 7 hours 1 min ago view
  • I noticed that too. He's getting to everything, but when he gets right under it on a high flyball he looks uncomfortable

    cubbies.4ever 15 hours 35 min ago view
  • Did you expect anything different?

    billybucks 16 hours 5 min ago view
  • Wow, did they blow this game. Stupid plays by the kids in the 7th -- Almora throwing to 3rd instead of 2nd to keep the DP in order (when a DP probably wins the game) and Baez throwing to 3rd (to a backpedalling KB) instead of getting the easy 2nd out at first - cost them the game. Also, Contreras almost throws the ball into RF on a nonexistent pick-off play. And Maddon, for using Peralta in the first place. Did they do a bunch of shots in the dugout before the 7th? Unbelievably bad baseball. I thought Almora had a high baseball IQ?

    billybucks 16 hours 27 min ago view
  • men on 2nd/3rd, 0 out...and nothing.

    cubs lose :(

    crunch 17 hours 23 sec ago view
  • UH OH! RALLY TIME!

    crunch 17 hours 10 min ago view
  • Getting tired of this Heywood weak sauce

    jacos 17 hours 20 min ago view
  • Yep, can't say I disagree with that. His first batter and resulting walk was just brutal. Reminded me of a bit of Jacque Jones spiking his throws into the ground from RF.

    Eric S 17 hours 29 min ago view
  • The use of Peralta in any semblance of a high leverage situation is questionable at best.

    fixed that for ya.

    crunch 17 hours 36 min ago view
  • The use of Peralta in any semblance of a high leverage situation is questionable at best. Hind sight is easy but Peralta had nothing.

    Eric S 17 hours 44 min ago view