Baby Jordan Goes Yard at Riverview Park

Rashad Crawford walloped a game-tying solo home run over the RF fence in the bottom of the 6th and Luis Hernandez threw three innings of shutout relief, as the Cubs and Diamondbacks played to a 1-1 tie on Field #5, and Carlos Hernandez tossed four innings of one-hit shutout ball and combined with four D'back relievers to blank the Cubs 2-0 on Field #6, in a Cactus League Extended Spring Training split-squad doubleheader played this morning at the Under Armour Performance Center at Riverview Park in Mesa, AZ.

 
Both games were scheduled to be eight-inning affairs, but the game on Field #5 was called after 7-1/2 innings with the score tied.

RHP Tevor Graham (Cubs 2013 13th round draft pick - Franklin Pierce University) got the start for Squad "A" and threw three perfect innings with six strikeouts on Field #6. Graham has a plus curve, and it was really working for him today.

Five Cub pitchers combined to punch-out 14 Diamondbacks on Field #6, albeit in a losing cause.

Known as "Baby Jordan" in high school because of his basketball prowess, 6'3 Rashad Crawford (Cubs 2012 11th round draft pick out of Mundy's Mill HS in Georgia) is an outstanding defensive CF, but hitting has been a real struggle (just 202/304/256 in 51 games and 197 PA at AZL Cubs 2012-13). He gave up switch-hitting at Extended Spring Training last year and now only hits left-handed, and he has been trying to learn to play "small ball" to take better advantage of his plus-speed, so hitting his first professional HR today was quite a surprise. 

Here are the abridged box scores from the two games (Cubs players only): 

FIELD #6:

CUBS SQUAD "A" LINEUP:
1. Charcer Burks, CF: 0-3 (BB, 6-3, K, F-9)
2. Kevin Brown, LF: 0-2 (F-8, BB, E-4)
3. Jeffrey Baez, RF: 1-3 (F-7, 1B, K)
4. Tyler Alamo, DH: 0-3 (6-3, 4-3, F-8)
5. Justin Marra, C: 0-3 (F-7, 3-U, P-6)
6. Gleyber Torres, SS: 0-3 (P-3, F-9, 6-3)
7. Zak Blair, 2B: 0-3 (K, 3-U, K)
8. Roney Alcala, 1B: 1-3 (3-1, 2B, F-7)
9. Jesse Hodges, 3B: 0-3 (6-3, K, L-5)

CUBS SQUAD "A" PITCHERS:
1. Trevor Graham: 3.0 IP, 0 H, 0 BR, 0 BB, 6 K, 0/3 GO/FO, 33 pitches (24 strikes)
2. Jeferson Mejia: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 1 WP, 0/2 GO/FO, 36 pitches (21 strikes)
3. Corbin Hoffner: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 0/2 GO/FO, 9 pitches (6 strikes)
4, Trey Lang: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 0/1 GO/FO, 15 pitches (9 strikes)
4. Alberto Diaz: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 PO, 22 pitches (11 strikes)

CUBS SQUAD "A" ERRORS: NONE

CUBS SQUAD "A" CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Justin Marra: 1-1 CS  

FIELD #5:

CUBS SQUAD "B" LINEUP:
1. Bryant Flete, 2B: 0-2 (4-3, BB, K)
2. Elliot Soto, SS: 1-3 (F-7, P-3, 1B)
3. Shamil Ubiera, RF: 0-3 (K, 5-3, 1-3)
4a. Eloy Jimenez, DH: 0-2 (5-3, P-4)
4b. Dalfis Ortiz, PH: 0-1 (6-3)
5. Rony Rodriguez, 1B: 1-3 (1B, F-7, 5-3, SB)
6. Adonis Paula, 3B: 0-2 (BB, K, F-9, PO)
7. Mark Malave, C: 0-3 (K, 4-3, K)
8. Ricardo Marcano, LF: 0-2 (K, K)
9. Rashad Crawford, CF: 1-2 (K, HR, R, RBI)

CUBS SQUAD "B" PITCHERS:
1. Adbert Alzolay: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 36 pitches (22 strikes)
2. Luis Hernandez: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 PO, 5/0 GO/FO, 35 pitches (24 strikes) 
3. Michael Wagner: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 3/1 GO/FO, 38 pitches (20 strikes)
4. Carlos Llano: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 2/1 GO/FO, 22 pitches (11 strikes)

CUBS SQUAD "B" ERRORS: NONE

CUBS SQUAD "B" CATCHERS DEFENSE:  
Mark Malave: 1-2 CS

ATTENDANCE: 16

WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's 

Comments

So, he hits like Jordan, too.

stupid rain delay with delayed start...i was timing my dinner to be ready for the 8pm start. /firstworldproblems

I know, right? Now you'll have to watch the game sleepy with a belly full of food and a good rain-delay drunk on.

ha. life = hard.

also, game on.

j.arrieta knocked around a bit in daytona...

5.2ip 5h 2bb 7k, 5r/3er (3hr)

t.wood 3r HR...lulz...ARZ, you suck.

...and he follows it up with a RBI double...ARZ, you suck.

I wonder how Travis Wood feels about playing 2B and leading off during his off days...

it's still really weird seeing wrigley so empty. hopefully it will pick up this summer.

they keep announcing attendance in the 27K-30K+ range...even though most of the time it looks like the "butts in seats" attendance is 10-15K at best. i haven't seen bleacher attendance so low since before the sosa/mcgwire HR chase days back in 98.

one really annoying side effect is (at least on CSN feeds) that they keep the field+crowd mics cranked up in volume...though it does lead to picking up a lot more player cussing/anger for side effect lulz.

The attendance may get a little better as the weather warms up, but get used to the generally sparse crowds until the Cubs as an organization start showing some signs of competitiveness. I think it's the right signal for fans to send to management: we're not going to pay big dollars to come to the park until you put out a product worth paying for.

The attendance may get a little better as the weather warms up, but get used to the generally sparse crowds until the Cubs as an organization start showing some signs of competitiveness. I think it's the right signal for fans to send to management: we're not going to pay big dollars to come to the park until you put out a product worth paying for.

I absolutely agree. And if they're not going to put out a competitive product, at least play the kids pretty much exclusively and abandon that platoon bullshit. Why should fans pay to watch guys like Barney, Valbuena and Schierholtz? There's no excuse, especially, for not playing Olt every day, I don't care if he is hitting a buck ninety. This is the only real opportunity to see what he's got, and figure out if they need Bryant to stay at third or move him to OF.

Junior Lake is a lot more fun to watch than Kalish or Sweeney.

On the other hand, Lake has a steep learning curve, which he might navigate a little more quickly knowing he could be riding the bench tomorrow. While on the bench, he might contemplate what he will do differently the next time the pitcher throws one of those tantalizing-but-high fastballs.

The manager should talk softly but carry a big pencil (for writing the lineup card).

IMO it's the big dollars part of it that's keeping people away. Going out to Wrigley on a whim is fun regardless of how the Cubs are playing, but not if you're spending $70+ for a ticket and $9/beer. That's what 60" HDTVs are for.

I propose this new rule for Cubs' management: The most expensive ticket in the park should be no higher than the total number of wins from the previous season. A Dugout Box for $66 would get some butts in the seats!

Do they still have the stupid f-ing ticket queue on ticket day? That thing has totally turned me off to buying Cubs tickets. Oh, yeah, I know, I could pay more than face value if I purchase from the 'legal' Cubs scalper.

Personally, the drive to Cincy takes just as long for me as the drive to Chicago, so these days I just go to Cincy to watch the Cubs play.

Stub hub you can get in the park for under $10.00

Phil, any fresh observations on Mejia or Luis Hernandez, the giants? Does Hernandez look like he throws hard, or not particularly? Mejia is pretty fast, I think, although obviously control is not so much.

Strange..so platooning Olt and Lake...kinda..Ruggiano against a righty too and hitting second.
Interesting lineup I suppose?

Recent comments

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  • AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

    Hagsag 2 hours 22 min ago view
  • Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!

    Hagsag 2 hours 23 min ago view
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 12 hours 4 min ago view
  • 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.

    johann 15 hours 2 min ago view
  • 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.

    crunch 15 hours 14 min ago view
  • 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.

    The E-Man 15 hours 23 min ago view
  • 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.

    The E-Man 15 hours 29 min ago view
  • 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...

    crunch 15 hours 47 min ago view
  • Good Hendricks sure is fun to watch. He was hitting all his corners today and the Phillies couldn't do anything with his changeup.

    johann 16 hours 23 min ago view
  • Bryant and I believe Zobrist both did that too.

    johann 16 hours 41 min ago view
  • 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.

    The E-Man 16 hours 43 min ago view
  • 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.

    crunch 17 hours 1 min ago view
  • j.urias optioned back to AAA...guess we wont be seeing him in the LAD series.

    crunch 17 hours 8 min ago view
  • 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.

    crunch 18 hours 3 min ago view
  • That Heyward move to avoid Bryant's ball hit at him was a thing of beauty too.

    johann 18 hours 21 min ago view
  • 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.

    crunch 18 hours 26 min ago view