May 2012

Neftali Rosario lined an RBI double into the LF corner and Trey Martin clubbed a two-run triple off the CF fence to highlight a four-run Cubs 2nd, but the Athletics rallied to score two in the 6th, two in the 7th, and three in the 8th en route to an 8-6 victory over the Cubs in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.

The Cubs go for the sweep and Dempster hopes to be awarded his first win of the season.

Gioskar Amaya hit for the cycle and drove-in five runs, as the Cubs edged the Rockies 6-5 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Dust Storm Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick east of Scottsdale, AZ.


The Cubs break the losing streak yesterday thanks to Jeff Suppan and a stiff wind out and look to start a streak the other way with Samardzija on the mound.

Hank Conger blasted a solo home run and an RBI double, Zach Borenstein hammered a three-run HR, and Mike Sodders cracked a three-run double, leading the Angels to a 17-1 Memorial Day thrashing of the Cubs this morning at Diablo Park Field #3 in Tempe, AZ.


Shawon Dunston Jr belted a home run leading off the game, and that was the only Cub run of the day.

The face of Joe Mather batting third will forever haunt my nightmares of the 2012 Cubs.

Ahhhh, boy...
Well look, Rafael Dolis is only 24, it's his first go-round in the bigs and under more normal circumstances his responsibilities would probably be much less.

Jair Bogaerts crushed a 420-ft HR over the CF fence to cap a four-run 5th inning and James Pugliese (four innings of one-hit shutout ball with five strikeouts) and three relievers combined to throw a three-hit shutout, as one squad of Cubs blanked one squad of Giants 4-0 on Field #2, and Javier Baez and Jeimer Candelario each doubled and drove-in two runs, Dong-Yub Kim doubled and tripled and scored two runs, Brian Inoa doubled and tripled and knocked-in two runs, and Wilson Contreras belted a solo HR, but Stephen Yarrow blasted a solo home run and Hector Mercedes hammered a three-run shot to propel the other squad of Giants to victory over the other squad of Cubs by a score of 11-9 on Field #3, in a Memorial Day Weekend Cactus League Extended Spring Training doubleheader extravaganza played this morning at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ.

Both games were seven-inning affairs.

From the previous thread, I came upon Old and Blue's complaint that he hates the phrase, "rebuilding year".

It implies that there is some actual construction going on. So far, best as I can tell, the only brick laid down is a Rizzo block, and there are no guarantees with prospects. Shark has been a pleasant surprise, but no credit for TheoCorp there. He's been in the system for some time.  I know I'm supposed to give this time, but so far, I'm pretty underwhelmed.

Hmmm. Maybe he's got something there. This made me think of a metaphor regarding the Foodie Fad of cooking deconstructed style. Yep, that's what Jedstein is using as their modus operandi.

They are deconstructing the Cubs:

  • More hits than runs
  • Good starting pitching without wins

Here is a working definition of what is going on (thanks to the Foodie Buddah.com site):

At heart, any deconstructed dish (ball club) should contain all the classic components found in the “original.” The difference is in the preparation. When creating a dish (ball club) utilizing deconstructive techniques, the ingredients (players) are essentially prepared and treated on their own. It is during the plating and presentation stages that everything is brought together.

Based on the Cubs puny offense of late, it is apparent that we are not at the "plating" stage, and far from the "presentation" stage. So to make my point just a little easier to swallow, you can choose which of the following deconstructed vs classic options you prefer. Just make sure there is enough alcohol content, 2012 Cubs watchers are going to need it.


...and I just wanted to give props to Tim Souers Cubby-Blue site. Awesome "Ryan Dempster Can't Get Any Support" pictures (Even Mrs. Dempster could use a little support in these trying times). Plus he tells a Metaphorical story (thanks, Charlie) that only a 10 game Cub losing streak could force out of him.

Jeff Pentland played with Reggie Jackson and has tutored Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa, Carlos Beltran and Matt Kemp, to name-drop just a few. He has advanced degrees in biomechanics. His playing days were on both sides of the chessboard; pitcher and hitter. What he doesn't know about the art/science of hitting may not be worth knowing.

No wonder the Dodgers fired him as their hitting coach last year.

It's not like there wasn't a precedent. But gurus like Pentland are never out of work any longer than they care to be. This year he signed on with the Seattle Mariners (again) as the hitting coach for their Triple A affiliate, Tacoma of the Pacific Çoast League. The Rainiers hit only .235 in April but this month they're banging away at a better than .300 clip and carrying a 13-game homer streak as Pentland settles in. He stepped away from the batting cage while the Rainiers are in Des Moines taking on the Iowa Cubs and talked with TCR.

Yasiel Balaguert singled three times, drove-in a run, and scored another, Sergio Burruel reached base three times on two singles and a walk, scored one run, and knocked-in another, and Dong-Yub Kim doubled twice and scored two runs, leading the Cubs to a 6-4 victory over the Rockies in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.

Trey Martin belted a bases-loaded triple and Kevin Encarnacion crushed a two-run triple to highlight a nine-run 3rd, Jeimer Candelario doubled twice, walked, and drove-in a run, and Rob Whitenack threw six strong innings, allowing one run (unearned) on three hits (all singles), with no walks and seven strikeouts, to help the Cubs cruise past the Brewers 12-1 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Maryvale Baseball Complex Field #7 (AKA “Paul Molitor Field”) in Phoenix, AZ.


Glad tidings from breezy Principal Park where the I-Cubs climbed all over the Tacoma Rainiers and snapped a four-game skid with an 18-8 slapstick win this afternoon. Anthony (Ratso) Rizzo (who else?) paced Iowa with a record-tying performance in support of Chris Volstad's first outing for the team.

Javier Baez drove-in six runs with a two-run HR and a grand slam, Yasiel Balaguert knocked-in four runs with a three-run home run and a sacrifice fly, Dong-Yub Kim drove-in two runs with an RBI single and a solo HR, and Wilson Contreras ripped a two-run double, leading the Cubs to a 14-4 demolition of the Angels in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.


2/3 of the way through 2012 Extended Spring Training, here are the Cubs Cactus League game statistics.

Trevor Gretzky singled, doubled, walked, stole a base, scored three runs, and drove-in another, and Danny Lockhart belted an RBI triple to key a five-run 5th, leading the Cubs to a 7-2 victory over the Diamondbacks on Quail Field, and Jeimer Candelario and Xavier Batista each rapped a two-run single and Dustin Geiger laced an RBI double to highlight a five-run 2nd inning, but the D’backs took advantage of four Cub errors (including three errant throws on attempted pick-offs) to score seven unanswered runs en route to a 7-5 victory on Mesquite Field, as the Cubs and Diamondbacks split an Arizona Barbeque Festival Cactus League Extended Spring Training doubleheader this morning at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort east of Scottsdale, AZ.


Like a bad penny, the Cubs can't seem to catch a break. Here is the list of the broken catchers:

Steve Clevenger -Oblique rib cage strain. He is scheduled to return to the batting cage this weekend and might be ready to come off the DL by next weekend in Pittsburgh.

Geo Soto - Went on the DL with a knee meniscus tear and had it repaired/ trimmed on Friday. Out at least 3 weeks.

Welington Castillo - Had an MRI of his knee this am and has a mild medial collateral sprain. Out of action about one week if things go well.

So who is left, you ask? Hint: Blake Lalli isn't in the starting lineup tonight...

Tags: 

Trey Martin laced a bases-loaded triple to key a six-run 2nd inning, and Javier Baez and Jeimer Candelario each blasted a two-run home run to highlight a five-run 9th, as the Cubs rode a 21-hit attack en route to a 14-5 thrashing of the Angels in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Diablo Park Field #3 in Tempe, AZ.

The game was extended an extra inning so that all of the pitchers who were scheduled to throw could get their work.

It was hinted at on twitter last night that big Cubs news was coming today and news did come.

Waiting for the game to begin tonight I noticed that the pitchers would be throwing into a stiff breeze. A couple young scouts, I thought, sat down a couple rows in front of me to chart the game, one of them armed with a jugs gun. I sauntered down to ask them how the scoreboard speedometer compared to their readings since the last time I checked it was thought to generally register a couple mph slower than actual velocity. No, the gunslinger told me, the scoreboard readings run pretty true. In fact, he said, he doesn't really use the gun when he's charting; he just goes by the scoreboard numbers. Only then did I realize the "scout" was Randy Wells.

Rock Shoulders drilled an RBI double and scored a run to highlight a two-run Cub 1st inning, and Rob Whitenack (2011 TJS rehab) threw five innings (60 pitches) of one-run ball, in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Indian School Park Field #4 in Scottsdale, AZ.

The game was called after nine innings with the scored tied 2-2.

Javier Baez (solo HR and a two-run single), Jeimer Candelario (two-run triple and an RBI single), and Danny Lockhart (two-run single and an RBI single) drove-in three runs a piece, Xavier Batista doubled twice, singled, and scored a run, and Micah Gibbs reached base four times on two singles and two walks and scored two runs, leading the Cubs to an 11-3 thumping of the Rockies in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.

Rock Shoulders belted a two-run home run and Shawon Dunston Jr doubled twice and scored two runs, but Kentrell Hill rifled a game-tying RBI triple in the bottom of the 7th to enable the Giants to avoid defeat on Field #1, while Ian Dickson and three relievers were combining to toss a three-hit shutout as the Cubs blanked the Giants 1-0 in the other game on Field #2, in a Cactus League Extended Spring Training doubleheader played this morning at Indian School Park in Scottsdale, AZ.

Both games were seven-inning contests (the game on Field #1 was called after seven innings with the score tied 5-5).

It's so cruel watching Ryan Dempster pitch one outstanding game after another and still not get his first win of '12.
Well, I guess he did give up 4 earned runs so his ERA ballooned to 1.97, but still.

The Cubs NL Central barnstorming continues with a trip to Missouri. NL ERA-leader Ryan Dempster tries to secure his first win against a Beltran-less lineup.

Rock Shoulders ripped a two-run double, walked twice, and scored a run, Trey Martin drilled a two-run single, and Danny Lockhart laced an RBI triple, leading the Cubs to a 6-2 victory over the Diamondbacks in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.


Miguel Marte and Jensi Peralta clubbed back-to-back home runs to highlight a six-run 9th, as the Athletics rallied to sting the Cubs 7-5 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Fitch Park Field #3 in Mesa, AZ.

The 6'3 230 Marte belted two home runs in the game, a solo blast leading off the top of the 4th to give the A's a 1-0 lead, and then a grand slam in the 9th that turned a 5-2 deficit into a 6-5 lead.

Javier Baez singled three times, stole two bases, and scored the only Cub run, but the Rockies scored three runs late in the game to break a 1-1 tie and defeated the Cubs 4-1 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Dust Storm Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick, east of Scottsdale, AZ


The game was extended an extra inning so that all of the Cubs and Rockies pitchers who were scheduled to throw today could get their scheduled work.


Cubs go with the right-heavy lineup against struggling southpaw Randy Wolf.

Dear Randy -

You could do a lot worse.

I bet you didn't know that Forbes Magazine ranked Des Moines the #1 city in America for young professionals. And you gotta be the only one around here pulling down $2.7M per annum. You should get out more and explore. That's probably advice you're not used to getting but since you may be here for a while...

Yasiel Balaguert singled, doubled, and walked, drove-in three runs, and scored another, and Xavier Batista drilled a two-run double, walked twice, scored a run, and notched another outfield assist (he now has five in 17 EXST games), leading the Cubs to a 9-4 victory over the Giants in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Indian School Park Field #4 in Scottsdale, AZ.

Wilson Contreras tripled twice, singled, scored two runs, and drove-in another, and Eduardo Gonzalez ripped a two-run triple and a single, but the Angels rallied for two runs in the bottom of the 8th and two more in the 9th, as the Cubs and Angels played to a 6-6 tie in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Diablo Park Field #3 in Tempe, AZ.


The game was called after the Angels tied the game in the bottom of the 9th.


Soriano sits because of a sore knee and an OPS in the .500's.

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