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...

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  • early tim tebow stuff rolling in...

    ran a 6.7 60yd (above average)...shagging flies in RF and showed off a rather impressive arm a few times, but average-at best on most of his throws...hit a few over the fence (both fields), fouled or weak contact a few...he's got a touch of power

    it'll be interesting to see who bites on this project. he probably projected himself out of RF and into LF, but unless he can make that power work on a steady basis it'll be hard for him to play himself up anyone's system.

    crunch 1 min 56 sec ago view
  • LHP Clayton Richard (released by the Cubs earlier this month) is pitching very well as a starting pitcher for the San Diego Padres and could be a good candidate to get traded to a contender looking for a veteran SP before tomorrow night's post-season roster eligibility deadline.

    Because they released him, the Cubs are paying most of Richard's 2016 salary (the Cubs are on the hooks for $2M, minus the pro-rated portion of the MLB minimum salary that is paid by the Padres).

    Arizona Phil 1 hour 46 min ago view
  • it is honestly awesome (for real) that anyone would even have a strong opinion on AZL playoffs. i guess if you invest enough time watching it, you want to see a fair/just playoff structure.

    plus, the kids deserve it.

    crunch 1 hour 47 min ago view
  • The AZL team with the best record over the course of the full 2016 AZL season and the only AZL team to play .600 ball (the AZL Dodgers) did not qualify for the AZL playoffs, and the AZL East Division team with the best record over the course of the full season (the AZL Athletics) did not qualify for the AZL playoffs, either. 

    That's because of the ridiculous "split season" schedule most of the minor leagues now play, a stupid system that rewards mediocrity at the expense of the worthy. 

    Arizona Phil 1 hour 54 min ago view
  • Despite good movement on his fastball, I think location kept him from getting Ks. Left some pitches up and away that got hammered up and away. Then of course Travis Wood gave up the 2-run double in the 7th, but both runs counted against Arrieta.

    Charlie 2 hours 30 min ago view
  • "i'm gonna make you my main squeeze one day, bro. save the date."

    This level of discourse is #charming.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 2 hours 31 min ago view
  • I would be having this discussion with anyone who (a) blathered on ad nauseum about the topic. (See, "Olt, Mike, not given an opportunity") or (b) responded directly to what I posted (which you did).

    Have a nice day.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 2 hours 33 min ago view
  • what would you do without me? aside from having your posting content here cut by 75%+?

    i'm gonna make you my main squeeze one day, bro. save the date.

    crunch 2 hours 37 min ago view
  • In this instance, yes, I care more about the result of this big thing that isn't really a big thing.

    #crunchsplaining

    #willlistentojeffsullivanmorethanyou

    #blessyourheart

    #hitler

    #tcrmartyr

    #billyhamiltonwar

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 2 hours 37 min ago view
  • Two things:

    Fangraphs WAR #s include baserunning and Hamilton is elite at that. He leads in SBs with the 54 and and has an 87% rate which is really good. I'm sure once he gets on base he's able to take the extra base quite often too. Both those things will up his overall WAR value.

    The differences between BR and FG WAR is pretty well documented online and thus If there are discrepancies it's fairly easy to figure out why. It's fairly well accepted that BR WAR is fine as a snapshot but FG is better at predicting future value.

    johann 2 hours 41 min ago view
  • i have no doubt at all you quit reading at that point. you're very enamored with outcomes without caring what it takes to get there.

    the fact it's exploitable, especially without someone to cover the running game for him, as well it's evolution in how people are testing possible exploits is interesting to some people...to me...i'm some people...hurrah.

    some people want to check the boxscore to see who won, some want to know how it went down.

    crunch 2 hours 54 min ago view
  • I read it as him saying it's not really that much of a concern and that the one time it really cost Lester, vs. K.C., was an anomaly.

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 2 hours 59 min ago view
  • if jeff says it, it's cool...when i say it, it's straight from the mouth of hitler.

    aside from the lack of jeff touching on the insane leads runners take and lester's inability to throw if he's fielding, this is a lot of what i've said about the issue.

    exploitable, needs his own personal catcher to control his shortcomings, relies on his ability to get outs along with his personal catcher keeping runners in check before things become further exploited...

    crunch 3 hours 2 min ago view
  • That would be Rice Krispy Treat

    The E-Man 4 hours 20 min ago view
  • "Crunch's cousin"

    Butterfinger or Baby Ruth?

    VirginiaPhil 4 hours 34 min ago view
  • I saw the first three innings and the last three, so I didn't see Arrieta get hit. His stuff looked nasty at first...what happened? Any insight from anyone who watched?

    #baseballtalk

    Tito 4 hours 46 min ago view