Casper Wells Unfriendly to Guests at Riverview Park

Bryant Flete reached base four times (two singles and two walks), knocked-in two runs, and scored another, and Casper Wells singled twice, walked, drove-in two runs, and scored another, leading the Cubs to an 8-4 victory over the Angels in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning on Field #6 at the Under Armour Performance Center at Riverview Park in Mesa, AZ. 

Nataniel Delgado (2012 NDFA - Dominican Republic - $280K bonus) clubbed a three-run home run to account for three of the four Angels runs.  

Justin Ruggiano (Cubs 15-day DL - hamstring) continued his EXST rehab, serving as a DH and batting three times. He laced a line-drive single to center and then later scored in the bottom of the 1st inning, grounded out 6-3 in his second AB, and flied out to the warning track in dead CF his last time up.  

Casper Wells (AAA Iowa 7-day DL - back spasms) also continued his EXST rehab, playing RF for seven innings and reaching base in all three of his Plate Appearances (the aforementioned two singles and a walk). He was due to hit a fourth time in the bottom of the 8th, but he had already departed for the clubhouse by that time. He looks to be 100%, and so he may be rejoining Iowa very soon.  

RHP C. J. Edwards (AA Tennessee 7-day DL - shoulder fatigue) is at Riverview Park while awaiting the results of his latest MRI. He can participate in PFP drills, but he is not yet cleared to resume throwing.  

Here is the abridged box score from today's game (Cubs players only):  


CUBS LINEUP:
1. Rashad Crawford, CF: 1-4 (1B, HBP, E-1, K, K, 2 R, SB)
2a. Justin Ruggiano, DH #1: 1-3 (1B, 6-3, F-8, R)
2b. Shamil Ubiera, RF: 0-1 (BB, 6-3)
3. Bryant Flete, 2B: 2-2 (1B, 1B, BB, BB, R, 2 RBI)
4a. Casper Wells, RF-DH: 2-2 (BB, 1B, 1B, R, 2 RBI)
4b. SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
5. Rony Rodriguez, DH #2: 0-3 (BB, F-8, F-7, F-9, RBI)
6. Tyler Alamo, C: 0-4 (4-6-3 DP, 4-3, 4-3, 6-3)
7. Ricardo Marcano, LF: 1-4 (P-6, 6-3, 1B, K) 
8. Elliot Soto, SS: 0-4 (K, 5-3, K, E-5, R)
9. Justin Marra, DH #3: 1-4 (3-U, F-8, 3-U, 2B, RBI)
10. Mark Malave, 1B: 2-4 (6-3, 1B, K, 1B, R)
11. Adonis Paula, 3B: 1-4 (E-5, 6-3, 2B, K, R)

CUBS PITCHERS:
1. Jeferson Mejia: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 4 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 1 PO, 1 GIDP, 3/1 GO/FO, 57 pitches (30 strikes)
2. Luis Hernandez: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 2/3 GO/FO, 28 pitches (19 strikes)
3. Zak Hermans: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 3/1 GO/FO, 31 pitches (18 strikes)
4. Josh Davis: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, 1 GIDP, 2/1 GO/FO, 36 pitches (24 strikes)

CUBS ERRORS: 1
3B Adonis Paula - E-5 (fielding error alllowed batter to reach base safely)

ATTENDANCE: 7

WEATHER: Sunny & very breezy with temperatures in the 80's 
 

Comments

AZ Phil: Here's a link for the image that best fits today's article. Note that if it's in your original comic collection, you plunked down ten cents back in the day and probably had it next to your Hot Stuff comic!

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Y6B1qagtlds/TphsK_N9HXI/...

http://i.ebayimg.com/t/Hot-Stuff-92-September-1969...$T2eC16hHJHEE9ny2tld1BQw679Fp0g~~60_35.JPG

I refuse to watch tonight's game. I have the time, and I won't do it. I'm not going to add a set of eyeballs to the MLB app site, even tho I know it won't make any difference. I don't know what Renteria is thinking with this refusing to play Olt every day, but I'm boycotting the games he doesn't play in if for no other reason that it means one less home run tonight. WTF, not playing him is almost like saying, "we won't need any home runs tonight kids"

EDIT: I will say this, though. I would like to see Olt get a couple regular base hits once in awhile.

Agreed and agreed. Boycotting and hoping he can hit. I was excited about his opposite field blast yesterday and thought he was starting to relax a little.

Btw here is the f'ing litmus test: any doubt that Atlanta was happy as hell Olt was taken out of the lineup for extra innings the other night? Any doubt in your mind that the Cardinals are happy they don't have to face Olt four times tonight? None. No doubt. And it's not even because he's good. It's because he's dangerous and he's fairly hot. What manager doesn't play a player that unnerves the other team? Ever? Maybe an aging veteran who needs rest. That's about it.

First and Third

Barney up
~sad horn~

Haha. Yeah ... I'm pretty sure it effected how Wainwright pitched to Lake too.

Bryant homered again

Too bad Barney and Valbuena are blocking him

he can't stay in AA too much longer performing like he is. sure the Ks aren't ideal, but they're not alarming given what he's doing around those Ks (including the walks). his bat is playing like a guy who's done with AA.

his glove seems like a guy who's ready for LF/RF, though.

Soler doubled again too

AAA by July for Bryant?
Start playing some outfield?

Need to keep Bryant at Tenn so he can win the Southern League Triple Crown -- leads in HR, RBI, 3rd in BA.

Smokies have top 3 in Southern League OPS. Nice.

I like my crow served lukewarm with sprinkles please.

trade valbuena to whoever will play the cardinals in the playoffs

i still like valbuena playing...playing 2nd.

2 more years of club control.

Exactly. I'd really like to see the best team on the field. And I think Sureholds and Barney are on the field for less than honorable reasons! ;)

Somebody woke up Albert Almora tonight...3 doubles, 4 rbi

and Ben Wells had a nice night 6ip, 3 hits, 0 runs, 8K, 0 BB

Arrieta is walking a tightrope over thin ice on the edge of the world, um with no where to turn, well I mean - he's wild tonight.

Yes. That's what I meant.

Can someone tell me what he's talking about? I'm not being facetious. I've never heard a manager talk like this. Is he just saying "we're fucking around for a while"? I mean is there a subtext I'm missing? Is it that he has pressure from the front office to play certain people for trade deadline consideration. I'm totally flummoxed:

http://mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20140513&conte...

It's really really bizarre. I think we've all said it - that it would be understandable if there was an established vet. Half of Olt's hits (very nearly) are home runs, which is also a little bizarre. I'd like to see that change but I also wouldn't want them to mess with his approach just yet. The only way to really see what this kid is about is to play him and give him those ABs. But you nailed it best in a post earlier up the thread. OTHER teams are intimidated by his presence. That walk yesterday? I'm glad he took it. He has eight of them now. Teams are starting to really be careful around the strike zone, and he isn't showing signs yet of reaching out for crappy pitches. When he strikes out, he strikes out Brett Jackson style, just seems to miss the damn thing. Jackson, however, doesn't smash the ball into space the way Olt does when he does connect, so teams aren't afraid of him.

The thing is, even if he goes 0-4, he's a threat to turn a game around at every at bat. Why on earth would you not play him? I loved that post you wrote. It said it a lot better. It's really crazy. I just don't get it at all.

Olt must go into the fetal position in the club house after games.

He's a first round pick and is current rookie leader in hrs and rbi's, and has a good eye for walks.

Stop babying him, Cpt Happy!

He's has had more confidence since he was 14 then you had your whole life Rickey!

even though j.arrieta got to go 96 pitches in his last injury rehab tuneup, he's only been allowed to go 82, 81, and 82 since his return to the bigs.

baez 0-4 with 3Ks.

43K in 102ab. is b.jackson his hitting coach in iowa?

Olt ph BB

Use him early Dicky and make sure he doesn't stay in the game.

AZ Phil, does Wada have an "out clause" in his contract? Thanks.

HAGSAG: I don't know if Tsuyoshi Wada has an opt-out in his contract, but we might be able to deduce some things: 

1. Any international player who was at least 23 years old and who had played all or parts of at least five seasons in a recognized foreign "major" league (NPB, KBO, Serie Nacional, et al) prior to signing his first contract with an MLB club becomes an Article XX-B FA when the player's contract expires, 

Tsuyoshi Wada was an Article XX-B player post-2013. 

2. If an Article XX-B MLB free-agent signs a minor league contract at least ten days prior to MLB Opening Day (Wada's original contract with the Cubs was signed in January), and then is either not released by 12 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day prior to MLB Opening Day or added to an MLB Active List (25-man roster) or MLB Disabled List by 3 PM (Eastern) on MLB Opening Day, the player automatically receives a $100,000 retention bonus, and the player can unilaterally opt-out of the minor league contract on June 1st if he has not been added to an MLB Active List (25-man roster) or an MLB Disabled List by that date. 

The Cubs released Wada prior to 12 PM on the 5th day prior to MLB Opening Day.

So because Wada was released by the Cubs prior to 12 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day prior to MLB Opening Day, it probably means the Cubs either did not want to pay the $100,000 retention bonus and/or give Wada the right to opt-out of his minor league contract on June 1st if he was not added to the MLB 40-man roster by that date. 

Also, because Wada was released from a minor league contract, Outright Release Waivers were not required, and so no other MLB club would have had an opportunity to claim him at the time the Cubs released him, even if another club was interested.

So the Cubs could have just not released Wada and kept the original minor league contract with the $100K retention bonus and the June 1st opt-out, but they did not. They released him (and then almost immediately re-signed him), obviously to either avoid having to pay the $100K retention bonus and/or to remove the automatic June 1st opt out.

From Wada's POV, he must have received some added benefit that he would not have had in the original contract he signed with the Cubs, or he probably wouldn't have re-signed a week before Opening Day without first testing the market. 

It's very likely that he did not receive an earlier automatic opt out (like May 1st) in his new contract (the one signed in March immediately after he was released) or he probably would have exercised it, or (more likely) the Cubs woud have made sure to add him to their 40-man roster prior to the opt-out date and then option him to Iowa. So even without knowing the particulars of his "second" contract (the one signed in March), I think we can surmise that Wada must have received additional money in exchange for a later opt-out or maybe even no opt-out at all (other than becoming a free-agent after the season if he isn't on an MLB 40-man roster by the 5th day folllowing the conclusion of the 2014 World Series). 

Again, even if Wada does have a right to opt out on a certain date (let's say July 1st), the Cubs can just add him to their 40-man roster by that date and then either place him on the 25-man roster, or else they could option him to Iowa, because he has two minor league options left. It would cost the Cubs a slot on their MLB 40-man roster to do that, but at least they could keep Wada from becoming a free-agent until the end of the season. 

If Wada is on an MLB 40-man roster at the conclusion of the 2014 World Series and he is not signed for 2015, he will automatically become an Article XX-B FA. And if he is on a minor league roster at the conclusion of the World Series, he would automatically become a Article XX-D second-contract minor league FA at 5 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day following the conclusion of the World Series. The only way the Cubs can be sure to retain Wada for 2015 (if they want to do that) would be to sign him to a 2015 minor league successor contract (but then he would be eligible for selection in the December 2014 Rule 5 Draft), or add him to their MLB 40-man roster and sign him to a 2015 MLB contract.

Thanks Phil

Mets Try to Finish Off Job Started in 1984

http://thebiglead.com/2014/05/14/ryne-sandberg-and...

ryno making more friends on his roster in philly...

http://www.philly.com/philly/sports/phillies/20140...

Recent comments

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  • Thanks for the updates Phil. Too bad about Frazier.

    Hagsag 11 min 9 sec ago view
  • The Cubs have released RHRP Scott Frazier (2013 7th round dfraft pick - Pepperdine).

    A Cubs pitching coach told me in Spring Training 2014 that he thought Frazier had the best pure stuff in the organization. Absolutely electric fastball & breaking ball combo. Other pitchers would gather behind the screen just to watch him throw "live" BP. That's how amazing he was. 

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 19 min ago view
  • Got a chance to see Diamondbacks RHSP Zack Greinke (15-day DL - strained oblique) throw a rehab start at Sloan Park Friday night. Four of the first seven AZL Cubs hitters singled and the Cubs did score an unearned run in the bottom of the 1st inning, but then Greinke got serious and struck out five in a row.

    ZACK GREINKE: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 5 K, 4/0 GO/AO, 49 pitches (34 strikes)

    Arizona Phil 5 hours 34 min ago view
  • Eloy Jimenez grand slam tonight. Hoping Soler power returns and gets hot but future looks bright in the outfield regardless.

    Eric S 9 hours 45 min ago view
  • Have fun - It may be good for Arrieta to be facing a team that doesn't know him as well as the NL teams. A nice shutout would do wonders for his confidence. He is confident in public but baseball is hard and he could use a boost, I'm sure.

    Old and Blue 10 hours 25 min ago view
  • Me too. I'll be at the game tomorrow and would love to see Good Arrieta.

    Brick 10 hours 50 min ago view
  • Last few games have been the April version of the Cubs that disappeared completely the past two months.
    Hope they can sustain it.

    blockhead25 11 hours 17 min ago view
  • Don't sell yourself short, Judge.

    Jackstraw 11 hours 44 min ago view
  • I love this team.

    Looks like Mother Nature is trying to call this fight.

    Rob Richardson 13 hours 12 min ago view
  • Hey! I remember this team!

    billybucks 13 hours 20 min ago view
  • The key for Heyward's offense: get early leads. Heard a stat on Mike & Mike on the way to work that his avg/power much better this year when the Cubs have the lead. And true to form he gets the two run dinger with Cubs winning 3-0 ...

    Eric S 14 hours 46 min ago view
  • I'm sorry - I was probably not looking at the correct line, or spot, or...who knows!

    I could blame it on the weed, but I stopped smoking many years ago.

    Fortunately, I can rely on the rest of you sober and astute folks to bring the correct info forth.

    The E-Man 15 hours 14 min ago view
  • Oh yeah! It just felt like one for some reason.

    Old and Blue 16 hours 20 min ago view
  • Agreed. I was not including Fowler or Heyward.

    I'm just not a fan of 2016 Coghlan.....

    Dusty Baylor 16 hours 27 min ago view
  • @Dusty Contreras if it's a Lester or Arrieta start. TLS is good PH too. You also forgot about Heyward, assume Fowler is CF.

    chitownmvp01 16 hours 28 min ago view
  • I expect Soler to get optioned as well when activated and Cahill to replace Grimm. It wouldn't surprise me if Coghlan and/or Soler is included in a trade.

    Maybe Coghlan is up to see if he can get on track before someone acquires him.

    This move could also be to assure that we have as much OF depth as possible to maximize Joe's ability to rest players in September once we've clinched.

    chitownmvp01 16 hours 30 min ago view