Cubs And Giants Rally to Victory at Indian School Park

Shilo McCall lined a walk-off two-run double into the left-centerfield alley with two outs in the bottom of the 9th to cap a three-run rally as the Giants edged the Cubs 4-3 on Field #1, and Arnaldo Calero looped an RBI single over the second-baseman's head into short right field to tie the game in the top of the 8th and Tyler Alamo shot a sharp grounder through the box into CF for what turned out to be the game-winning RBI single in the top of the 9th, as the Cubs derailed the Giants 2-1 on Field #2, in a Cactus League Extended Spring Training split-squad doubleheader played this morning at Indian School Park in Scottsdale, AZ. 

RHPs Erick Leal and Trevor Graham were the starting pitchers for the Cubs, and both threw three innings of shutout ball. Leal had the more-impressive outing of the two because he had to pitch around two errors, striking out four and inducing two timely DP grounders to get out of trouble. RHP Luis Hernandez "piggybacked" with Leal and also threw three innings (the three middle innings) on Field #1, although he did surrender a run, two hits, and three walks.  

Jorge Soler continued his EXST rehab assignment with Squad "A" on Field #2, playing RF for five innings and getting a total of five Plate Appearances (one in each of the first five innings). He went hitless in the game, although he did reach base once. Specifically he grounded out 6-3 in the 1st inning, was called out on strikes (a three-pitch AB) in the 2nd, reached base after being hit by a pitch (left shoulder) in the 3rd, grounded out 6-3 again the 4th, and flied out to the warning track in front of the Batter's Eye in CF (400+ feet from home plate) in the 5th.

In four EXST games this week, Soler has totaled 20 Plate Appearances. He is 3-17 with an RBI double (line drive into the LF corner) and two singles (both ground singles, one of which drove-in a run), two fly outs (one of which was an RBI sacrifice fly), ten ground outs (all ten being one or two-hop choppers hit to the left-side of the infield), and he reached base on an E-1. He has struck out twice (once swinging and once looking), and he has reached base twice on an HBP (he was hit in the lower back and on the left shoulder). He has yet to draw a walk  He has played RF twice (both times for five innings), and he does not appear to be favoring his right leg while running, although he has been just jogging to 1st base on the ground outs. 

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


X. Jorge Soler, RF: 0-4 (6-3, K, HBP, 6-3, F-8)
NOTE: Soler batted 3rd in the top of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th innings
1. Gleyber Torres, SS: 0-2 (BB, BB, K, K)
2. Zak Blair, 2B: 0-3 (F-7, K, HBP, 6-3)
3. Shamil Ubiera, LF: 1-4 (5-3, 2B, K, 5-3)
4. Kevin Brown, 1B: 2-4 (E-1, K, 1B, 2B, R)
5a. Varonex Cuevas, DH #1: 0-1 (K, BB)
5b. Tyler Alamo, PH-DH: 2-2 (1B, 1B, RBI)
6. Jesse Hodges, 3B: 1-4 (K, F-8, 4-3, 1B)
7. Antonio Valerio, C: 0-4 (5-3, 4-1, K, K)
8. Charcer Burks, CF: 1-3 (K, BB, 1B, 6-4 FC, R, SB)
9b. Arnaldo Calero, DH-RF: 1-2 (K, 1B, RBI) 

1. Trevor Graham: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 4 K, 2/2 GO/FO, 65 pitches (36 strikes)
2. Michael Wagner: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HBP, 1/1 GO/FO, 31 pitches (20 strikes)
3. Alberto Diaz: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 PO, 3/2 GO/FO, 22 pitches (10 strikes)
4. Francisco Carrillo: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/3 GO/FO, 24 pitches (18 strikes)

2B Zak Blair - E-4 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)

Antonio Valerio: 2-3 CS


1. Rashad Crawford, CF: 0-3 (BB, K, L-8, K)
2. Alberto Mineo, 1B: 1-4 (L-8, K, 1B, 3-U, SB)
3. Oliver Zapata, LF: 0-4 (K, 4-3, K, 4-3)
4a. Eloy Jimenez, RF: 1-3 (6-3, P-3, 1B)
4b. Ricardo Marcano, RF: 0-1 (K) 
5. Rony Rodriguez, DH: 0-3 (BB, F-7, K, F-8, R)
6. Elliot Soto, SS: 2-4 (1B, 4-3, L-8, 1B, R, SB)
7. Adonis Paula, 3B: 1-4 (1B, L-9, K, K, R)
8. Erick Castillo, C: 1-3 (2B, 6-3, E-6, RBI)
9. Dalfis Ortiz, 2B: 1-3 (1B, K, K, RBI)

1. Erick Leal: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K, 1 HBP, 2 GIDP, 4/1 GO/FO, 52 pitches (34 strikes)   
2. Luis Hernandez: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 3 BB, 2 K, 1 PO, 3/3 GO/FO, 60 pitches (34 strikes)
3. Greyfer Eregua: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K, 0/2 GO/FO, 23 pitches (18 strikes)
4. Yomar Morel: 0.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 0/1 GO/FO, 29 pitches (21 strikes)

1. 3B Adonis Paula - E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)  
2. SS Elliot Soto - E-6 (two-base throwing error allowed batter to reach 2nd base safely)


WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 80's


Have there been any Kyuji Fujikawa sightings since April 14th?

Fujikawa and Veras are both big reasons why I hate big money free agent pitcher signings. Best to grow your own. Hoyer alluded to that the other day, when he mentioned that signing a free agent pitcher can be a huge mistake and he actually pointed to Veras as an example. He also mentioned that his inability to find the plate came as a complete surprise.

That's also my number one reason for not wanting to see them resign Samardzija. He may or may not develop into an ace, but at well in excess of $100 million, I don't think that's a worthy risk. I can't think of any free agent pitchers, even at ace status, that is worth the money that is being thrown around these days. Sign one, watch him get hurt.

I hate to sound like the Dana Carvey old man character on SNL, but when I was a kid, they wouldn't let us throw curve balls at all. No breaking pitches. Now, you see these little leaguers throwing breaking stuff that looks like it is falling off the table. No wonder free agency = TMJ.

Q-MAN: No.

That's too bad. Thanks Phil.

Sam Fuld is fun to watch.

CCO quoting our Rock Star, AZ Phil, including a link (regarding the status of Fujikawa)

...put it up to 11

I hope Mueller is not teaching Rizzo to take all the way on 2-0 counts.

Second time this year Ive seen him do it.

Whatever Mueller is saying, I hope he keeps saying it.

Thank God Sweeney went on Dl.

Cubs bullpen looks like roadies for the Allman Bros.

/get off my lawn

Tony Four Sacks

/starting to feel it

He's getting more Bonds-like in his ABs every day. The league is really starting to not want to pitch to him at all. It's interesting that the league decided before he did how good he is.

Cubs win a series!
Cubs win a series!

...and they're not in last place in the NL Central (lead PIT by 0.5 games)

That game is why I find Junior Lake so interesting. The third pitch in the home run AB was a change up low and and out of the zone he would have swung at, and missed, last year. Wacha, for some reason, then threw him a high fastball, same as the double he hit. That was a head scratcher. I guess a lot of guys swing and miss at those because it was up high but also outside a bit. But the fact that Junior can turn on a pitch like that is pretty cool.

Recent comments

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  • based on what SF has been doing every other year lately, getting access to the postseason playoffs seems to be what's important. bring on dat short series!

    that said, skipping the sudden death 1-game WC would be nice from here on out.

  • I know what you are saying, but I feel compelled to point out that there's no such thing as luck, curses, etc. The Cubs this year have as good as a chance as the Pirates to move on to the next round. If the Cubs proceed to the next round or not tomorrow, it will not be because of luck, but because one team outlasted the other. When/if the Cubs are lucky enough to make it to the league series, that's where they may find their biggest challenge. The Dodgers have a good, deep pitching staff.

  • debuting the new format 1 game "sudden death" WC matchup at yankee stadium does a perfect job of showing the intense emotion and drama this game can be.

    that said, i'm ready to not see yankee stadium or hear fans at yankee stadium for another 5 and 1/2 months. at least i don't have to sit through the braves with their "tommy hawk chawp" this postseason.

  • i'd like to know why the internet radio feed of the game (which is always delayed by a few seconds at best) is almost a minute faster than the ESPN cable TV coverage. wtf?

  • i dont know what order they'll be in, but i pretty much expect fowler/schwarb/rizzo/bryant/montero/castro/lastella/arrieta. any change at all (aside from the first 4 guys) wouldn't shock me, though. coghlan is still a wildcard in the lineup joe could always march d.ross out there with very slow arrieta pitching.

  • Yup. Have to agree. Baseball, like golf, certainly has that psych component for the player. There is no real reason why a fielding position should affect a batting average. The Cubs are 106 years over due for a little luck. Don't you guys think so? Maybe the rookies can bring some dumb luck on.

  • probably stacking capable lefties vs cole while keeping the "hot" castro in the game. fwiw, he's 1-6 lifetime with 0 bb/k vs cole (double).

    i chalk bryant's issues at the plate while playing OF up to coincidence so far.

  • I will call your dead horse, "Trigger".

    In one game, when anything is possble, I am glad that Joe Maddon is our Manager.

    He knows the stats better than all of us. It would seem, IF La Stella gets the start at 3B, it will be only up to the point that they were to get the lead (crosses fingers). From everything I have read, the game will be managed like a hoops game: offense/defense. So expect La Stella to be out of the game by the 5th. This team is incredibly deep which is so surprising. We never woulda thunk it.

  • i don't know what their roster plans are, but j.herrera is out there practicing with the team.

    i can't imagine him making any roster, though. dude had 4 PA the entire month of sept. him being a good dude to be around while keeping the clubhouse loose seems to be his main role at this point.

  • I know it's my own personal dead horse to beat --but Bryant has been a lousy hitter when playing the OF this year. Given that it's his first playoff game, I really hope they keep him in his natural position and don't mess with his routine.

    Lousy as in 8-for-45 with one XBH and no HR. Small sample and all that -- but why take the chance?

  • hard to tell what's up given they'll probably want to stack as many good lefties into the lineup as possible.

    castro being a bit hot doesn't help things. if he was still cool they'd probably stick la stella at 2nd and call it a day.

  • Madden won't announce lineups but Stella is practicing at 3rd and Bryant in LF today. I'd rather see Bryant at 3rd but I guess Stella has been hotter than Coghlan.

    /edit. Though I guess they could be practicing this with the idea Stella would come in as a PH then double switch him to 3rd base and Bryant to LF. Hope that's the plan instead

  • I really like the sound of that idea about expanding the AFL to ten teams. Each org. gets to field more players.
    They should do that anyway, regardless of Adv. Instructs.

  • Dallas Beeler, Corey Black, David Garner, Pierce Johnson, Steve Perakslis, James Pugliese, Duane Underwood Jr, and Rob Zastryzny threw early-morning bullpen side-sessions at Riverview yesterday.  

    Underwood threw last, and received specific one-on-one instruction from pitching coach Mike Mason. 

  • HAGSAG: There are only five advanced instructs squads left, and presently the only "co-op" team operating is the Angels/Cubs.

    The league was originally established as a "parallel" league to the AFL (a sort of "junior AFL"), for players too advanced for traditional ("basic") instructs but who were unable to get placed on AFL rosters due to AFL player-limits.

  • He is but I would think it'd be better to start out with offense and then bring in Jackson and LaStella once they have a lead. Stella has very good PH #s too.