Giants Stomp on Cubs at HoHoKam Park

Buster Posey and Joaquin Arias collected three hits a piece, as the Giants defeated the Cubs 9-3 in Cactus League action this afternoon at Dwight Pattrerson Field at HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZ.

box score

Travis Wood got the start for the Cubs and labored through four innings of work (93 pitches - only 50 strikes), surrendering four runs on seven hits (three doubles and four singles) and four walks (including Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong twice, the second one a lead-off four-pitch walk) plus two WP. Wood had two especially long innings (a 26-pitch 3rd and a 28-pitch 4th) that probably precluded him from going out for a 5th inning. 

"Supersub" utility man Brent Lillibridge had an absolutely awful day at shortstop, a performance that will call into question whether he can or should ever play the position (which is his "natural" position, BTW) in an MLB regular season game. He commited a fielding error in the top of the 1st that allowed a batter to reach base (and as a result T. Wood had to pitch out of a bases-loaded jam), and made three bad throws later in the game (one a terrible relay throw on what should have been a 4-6-3 DP, another a one-hopper that first-baseman Steve Clevenger was able to snag and then tag the batter-runner for an out, and a 3rd that should have been the start of a 6-4-3 DP but ended up in RF, eventualy allowing two unearned runs to score). 

Cory Wade (battling for the last slot in the bullpen) had a poor outing, throwing two innings and allowing four runs (but only two ER thanks to the Lillibridge throwing error) on four hits (including two doubles) and a walk. Wade threw several low-pitch innings in previous appearances and looked to be efficient if not over-powering, but he did that by pitching-to-contact and probably having some luck with BABIP. But today his stuff was exposed as below average and VERY hittable, and so I doubt that he will be seeing Wrigley Field anytime soon.    

Shawn Camp and Hector Rondon were very good, however, Camp striking out the side in a 1-2-3 8th, and Rondon throwing a scoreless 9th with one strikeout. 

The Cubs offense mostly struggled against Giants SP Ryan Vogelsong, eventually scoring three runs, one on an RBI double by David DeJesus that SF CF Angel Pagan lost in the sun, and the other a two-out two-run HR into the bullpen beyond the RF fence by Dioner Navarro in the bottom of the 6th (Vogelsong's last inning), Navarro's 4th Cactus League HR of 2013. 


The defense wasnt the best, but Cory Wade did not do himself any favors in making the pitching staff.

AZP--What's the deal with Panigua? This guy is presumably one of the Cubs' top 2-3 starting pitcher prospects, signed with much fanfare last year. Now he's gone all Waldo on us? Or have you sighted the guy in Mesa?

I get dark visions of Lillibridge as the New Jose Macias....

Don't you dare slander the non-great Macias. He's my favorite shitty ex-cub (closely beating out Choi, Fox and Dubois)

Choi actually had some talent until he got "outed". My fave shitty ex-Cub from the 2000's - on has to be Randall Simon. Wade Miller is up there too simply b/c he had the balls and the good sense to get Jim Hendry to sign him

None of those guys saved a season like Neifi.

(golf clap)

That's true...but I was only thinking of baseball players.

I like to fondly recall the time in spring training 2005 that Glendon Rusch got his entire $2 million salary paid to him in twenties and then stuffed it all into his uniform before taking the mound.

Isn't that about the same time Hendry slimmed down? Coincidence?

With a 12 year career, and a .7 WAR, Neifi wouldn't make my "shittiest Cub List". Typically mediocre and overused during the Dusty regime for sure, though.

920 PA .276/.297/.384 - .681 OPS - N.Perez

1244 PA .263/.305/.349 - .654 OPS - D.Barney

lulz. sigh.

Removed because I don't know how to read.

those are solely cubs numbers.

neifi needed injuries to get more ABs after his 1-season sink/swim...barney is getting ready to go into year 3 of being handed the job as a starter.

i hope they're done with him as soon as it's time to start actually paying him for his glove game...unless he's fine working injury replacement/rest replacement/late inning bench.

Of course Neifi was 31-32 with the Cubs:
Barney was 25-26 making:
2011- $500,000
2012- $562,000

yeah, that's why i hope the cubs are done with him when it's time to start paying him real money unless he's happy working part time off the bench.

d.barney is about to go into year 3 as the undisputed starter.

True. Barney as the cheap starter during rebuilding is all well and good.
I'm hoping he gets some competition from Logan Watkins next year.

I felt the same about Terry O.

...about Terry O.

Which insulted your senses more Neifi the lead off hitter or Neifi the # 5 hitter?

neifi's 115-ish leadoff PAs...the blight on the cubs that will never die.

he didn't deserve to be there, of course.

119 batting 1st...2 batting 5th...looked it up. he hit 7th and 2nd a lot more.

Wasn't his fault that Dusty was his manager. Sori is not to be faulted for Hendry giving him an 8-year contract with an NTC.

He sucked balls. That was his fault.

He had a few good years with the team. But the knee injury robbed him of several very productive years he may have had with the team.

everything is dusty's fault last i checked...and he's the only guy that would actually let d.barney be a starter for 3 years...i mean, let n.perez be a starter for 1 year.

Darwin Barney is a better hitter and defender than Neifi and is playing on a team that isn't trying to compete.

calling d.barney a better hitter is like saying having AIDS is better than having Super AIDS. hell, one could argue that d.barney is a worse hitter. neifi had .13 better BA, .08 worse OB%, and .27 better slugging...still, it's low level pathetic either way, either player, no matter who has the edge.

You can't argue he's a worse hitter and again the key here is non-competing team. Cheap player who plays very good defense and not blocking anyone that I know of. Unlike Neifi where we were actually trying to compete with that black hole at SS. This team is spending money on the players it really wants and I can guarantee if they see someone better at 2b when the time is right they will get them.

There is really no comparison.

yeah, you can argue he's a worse hitter...there's no slam-dunk...there's even an argument you can point to with numbers that he's a worse hitter.

still, this an argument about 2 of the worst full time players the cubs have had...1 got 1 full season...the other is getting a shot at a 3rd full season. ronny cedeno got a full year, too, worse than neifi or least he only got 1 season, though.

Which insulted your senses more Neifi the lead off hitter or Neifi the # 5 hitter?
I love this question.

Some of this history is a bit blurry to me these days but as I recall...When DLee broke his wrist (April 2006) it was Neifi who replaced him. Todd Walker was shifted to first and Neifi played 2nd. I don't recall Neifi being put into DLee's spot in the lineup, so he probably batted in the 1-2 slot. Did Neifi really bat 5th? As I recall, they went with Todd Walker over Grudz (after 2004 season) because Walker hit lefty...foreshadowing the Hendry's Milton Bradley choice when he and Lou decided the Cubs needed to get more left handed.

With Lee out, the Cubs could move Todd Walker over from second base or use veteran utility player John Mabry, manager Dusty Baker said after Wednesday's game.

neifi had 7 PA batting 5th in 06...2 PA in 05. he mostly hit 2nd or 8th in 06...2nd or 7th in 05...

dusty had/has a thing for "contact hits 2nd" matter the ob%, if you don't K a lot and make contact, that's how he loves to use the #2 slot. it was nice to see dusty use t.walker in the 2 slot vs righties when he was a's the type of guy you give a manager like dusty if you're a GM that wants your "contact hits 2nd" manager to plug into the #2 slot a guy who has ob% along with his contact.

Neifi batting 5th more then once was enough. I just remember him batting 5th or 6th and bunting for last out with tying run on third in 9th.

Neifi started out with some good ideas and good intentions.

He just took them a little too far....

needs more adderall and methamphetamines.

he kept the trains on time

Ha ha. I saw what you did there.

Since (golf clap) has already been used on this thread, I'll just say thanks for that comment.

OPS+ by year

2003 - 141 (67PA - ignore)
2004 - 79
2005 - 53 (before trade to Detroit)

2010 - 54 (85 PA - ignore)
2011 - 83
2012 - 79

OPS+ is even hated by a lot of stat geeks =p

it's a "park adjusted" faith stat along with a comparative season aggregate stat.

most people hate ERA+ more, though.

Isn't it normalized by league average? It seems traditional measures wouldn't account for the currently depressed run environment.

Muskat with some quotes from Scott Baker after his recent MRI and MD visit with Dr. Gryzlo. Not much news but, whatever.

...and the Halos received a couple of token minor leaguers in outfielder Exicardo Cayones and lefty reliever Kramer Sneed.

This is interesting only in that Soriano might bring. Wells to the Yankees with NY picking up $13M/2 for 2 useless prospects and salary relief for the Angels that gets them under the salary cap.

useless is practically an over-statement. e.cayones is interesting, but he has an alarming lack of power with no above-average speed to match. k.sneed's numbers makes him look like he's close to being out of organized ball given his age, performance, and level.

if the best the cubs can hope to get out of shifting soriano is saving $10-$15 and picking up little of talent in exchange...well, they still have to replace what soriano can do even if he's overpaid to do it.

Totally different beast. The Yanks wanted a name on the cheap without giving up prospects. Epstein wants prospects as a key portion of the deal. Hence, why the deal never happened with Soriano.

late-in-thread hijack:  Head to Head league looking for one (or three) more players. Mostly TCRers, though some of us aren't around here much any more, like me.  Low-intensity, high year-to-year continuity, engagement.  Check it out:  yahoo id 62369 and password samfuld

Recent comments

The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • Oh what do you know, Cubster? Go back to your day job.

    --- Ducks, puts on Cardinals cap, runs.

  • Russell had a severe hamstring last year while with the A's system, forcing him to miss the first half of 2014. I've even wondered if his injury last year was a component of Billy Beane putting him on the trade market. He was quoted saying that last year's injury was a 10 out of 10 when it happened. Last night he said his hamstring soreness was a 1/1.5 out of 10. Hamstring injuries are tricky though, so I'd expect the medical team to be overly cautious here.

  • ...I want to reinforce the observation that there was no sea of red in the crowd. The usual Cardinal fans roaming the stadium were few and far between.

    Also, almost every 2 strike pitch brought the fans to their feet. Good for those in knee rehab.

  • "1st team hit hit 6HR in a game in the postseason." rises above obvious...i checked it with the official fact-finding commission of Douche, Douche, and Douchestein. they agreed with you, but they're a bunch of f'n douches so who cares?

    btw, the cubs are 2-1 in the post-season series.

  • I should be able to watch the game on the NFL replay app, whatever that thing is called. I've got it on my iPad. This is the first year I haven't forced myself to somehow watch every game - no I take that back, last year was - in quite some time. Last year was so unbearable, no pun intended.

    You make some good points about Cutler, and I was a holdout defender of Cutler for a long time. I gave up on him a bit after one too many dumb interceptions, but last year doesn't count. Trestman was the worst coach in Bears history.

  • Nice little reportage there!. I think you're older than me. Considerably older. Maybe several generations. Working out is so essential, especially as age kicks in, isn't it? I still lift weights, and so I'm confident that when I get to be at the hip breaking age, mine won't be a statistic. But I have a ways to go for that to be a concern.

  • What was impressive to me is that the Cubs won despite poor base running, several defensive miscues, Russell leaving due to injury, Arrieta having an off game and getting knocked out early, and Rondon giving up 2 runs in the 9th. If they can win a game like that... 

  • I was there too. The crowd was absolutely electric. People were standing for every big and semi-big moment, from the first inning on. It felt incredibly strange and exhilarating to see the Cubs (the Chicago bleepin' Cubs!) score playoff insurance runs on the Cardinals. What a game. One to remember.

  • 14 in attendance. What's the record for attendance in the fall? I guess I should ask what the record attendance listed is in one of your recaps.

  • I was there too, with my grown son. This is my miracle year-- I rose to the top of the season ticket list after eight years, completely unexpectedly, and my wonderful wife agreed to put the ticket fee on the emergency credit card. The whole point of course was that the Cubs were going to be good this year, and then for a while, so to get season tickets with the guaranteed shot at the postseason was incredible timing. We got to the remote lot at 4:10 after stopping at Nhu Lan for our usual banh mi sandwiches, only to find the lot full, way earlier than normal.

  • Wrigley was electric tonite
    Not many card fans
    Video board was great, they played "there goes my hero" by foos over ryno highlights before he came out. Spectacular

    Good times hopefully they win tomorrow but think Lester will beat poopy pants on Wednesday.

    Happy 4th anniversary of Theo's signing

    Go Cubs !

  • Yeah. "Goodbye!" is a lame HR call.

    I miss Len and JD -- although, driving home from a friend's, WBBM played all 6 HR calls in a row -- and Len got to call the Bryant/Rizzo back-to-back. Very fun.

  • Lackey has been a beast against us. His stats on 3 days rest, however, not as nice. There is plenty of hope.

  • And, no dreadlocks grown yet.

  • Captain Obvious Strikes Again!!!

  • Amen, brother.