Golden Sparkles for Cubs at Talking Stick
Reggie Golden drilled a two-run single, an RBI double, and a triple, Mark Malave singled, doubled, walked, and scored two runs, Jeffrey Baez singled twice, walked, stole a base, and scored a run, and James Pugliese hurled four innings of shutout baseball, leading the Cubs to a 6-4 victory over the Rockies in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Dust Storm Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort, east of Scottsdale, AZ.
After beginning the Cactus League Extended Spring Training schedule mired in a 1-22 slump (045/276/091 in 29 PA over the course of 11 EXST games), Cubs 2010 2nd round draft pick Reggie Golden has been on fire, hitting 423/483/692 over his last nine games (29 PA), bringing his season slash-line up to a more-respectable 250/438/479. Golden suffered two torn ligaments in his left knee a year ago while running the bases as a member of the Peoria Chiefs, and missed the rest of the 2012 season. He is just now rounding back into playing shape.
James Pugliese has been pitching "lights out" over his last four Cactus League EXST appearances (two GS), allowing no runs on four hits and four walks with 11 strikeouts in 10.1 IP. With Josh Conway out for the season and Dillon Maples having been promoted to Kane County, Pugliese is putting in a claim on one of the open starting rotation slots at Boise.
Wilfredo Petit returned to action today, catching for six innings and getting three AB. Petit suffered a bruise on the back of his left hand last week after being struck by a bat on a Catcher's Interference error, and although it initially appeared to be a serious injury, x-rays were negative.
Here is the abridged box score from today's game (Cubs players only):
1a. Albert Almora, CF: 0-4 (6-3, 6-3, F-8, K, RBI)
1b. Kevin Encarnacion, CF: 0-1 (4-3)
2. Jeffrey Baez, DH: 2-4 (1B, K, 1B, K, BB, R, SB)
3. Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-5 (6-3-5 DP, P-3, K, F-9, 1B, SB)
4. Jacob Rogers, 1B: 1-4 (F-9, K-WP, BB, 1B, K, R)
5. Reggie Golden, LF: 3-4 (3B, 4-6-3 DP, 1B, 2B, R, 3 RBI, CS)
6a. Garrett Schlecht, RF: 0-1 (HBP, K, BB, PO)
6b. Jose Dore, RF: 1-1 (1B)
7. Brad Zapenas, 2B: 0-4 (6-3, F-8, F-8, P-4)
8. Mark Malave, 3B: 2-3 (BB, K, 1B, 2B, 2 R)
9a. Wilfredo Petit, C: 0-3 (3-U, E-3, K, R)
9b. Erick Castillo, C: 0-1 (6-3)
1. James Pugliese: 4.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 GIDP, 42 pitches (31 strikes), 5/2 GO/FO
2. Carlos Rodriguez: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 0 K, 27 pitches (14 strikes), 1/2 GO/FO
3. Larry Suarez: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 43 pitches (26 strikes), 3/3 GO/FO
4. Matt Iannazzo: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 PO, 27 pitches (17 strikes), 1/1 GO/FO
CUBS ERRORS: NONE
CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Wilfredo Petit: 1-1 CS
2. Erick Castillo: 0-1 CS
CUBS OUTFIELD ASSISTS:
RF Jose Dore - potential tying run thrown out 9-2 trying to score from 2nd base on single
WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's
"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."
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.
Only 3 pitches for Leathersich. Not much of a rehab outing.
Thanks for the reporting Phil.
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.
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.
Sounds like a much better game than last night's fiasco in Flushing.
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.
I noticed that too. He's getting to everything, but when he gets right under it on a high flyball he looks uncomfortable
Did you expect anything different?
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?
men on 2nd/3rd, 0 out...and nothing.
cubs lose :(
UH OH! RALLY TIME!
Getting tired of this Heywood weak sauce
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.
The use of Peralta in any
semblance of a high leveragesituation is questionable at best.
fixed that for ya.
The use of Peralta in any semblance of a high leverage situation is questionable at best. Hind sight is easy but Peralta had nothing.