A round of applause for Arizona Phil and his Cubs ST coverage!

I thought I knew a little about baseball til I started reading your posts here at TCR, Arizona Phil.
The depth of your knowledge and your frank, watchful eye have kept us all deeply in the loop of our favorite team.
Thanks.

And now...2012!
Whatever the hell it turns out to be. 

Comments

Here here. Thanks, Az Phil

Thanks, Phil.
Always appreciate the in depth information.
Head over to the Woodshed in Mesa and have some wings on me.

I love your spring coverage. I love your coverage when the rest of the media returns to Chicago even more. Then we get XST coverage we'd get nowehere else.

I can't agree with this enough. Every day I check the site, hoping to see an AZ Phil recap about a game at Fitch Park that I couldn't follow elsewhere. Other teams might get a tweet or two about EXST or Fall Instructs, but the Cub fans get full box scores. Thank you, and I will most definately have to buy you a beer (or other beverage if you do not consume alcohol) when I finally am able to convince my wife to let me attend ST.

You could buy him a beer at Dwight Patterson Field -- no alcohol is allowed at Fitch Park (and it's strictly a BYOB situation there).

Yep keep up the good work AZ Phil.

Absolutely. Thank you, AZ Phil!

Thanks to all those who keep TCR alive and engaging! Thanks for the work and energy you put into this blog!

I have learned more from Phil than any baseball expert.

Agree--not only about how the Cubs' minor leaguers are doing, but also about good roster management and even batting and pitching tidbits. Thank you!

I seldom post, but often read. I too wanted to thank you for your coverage and insight!

Ditto from me, AZ PHIL. I never would have had the full appreciaton of how badly the Hendry regime mis-managed the 40-man without your thoughtful and detailed explanations. Thanks so much!

And, of course, your attendance reports frlom EXST and AFL. ;)

May the Cubs finally win a World Series in our lifetimes and when we can still enjoy it.

Ditto Ditto Ditto

Careful with the praise, someone is gonna make a "massaging his balls" comment soon.

There really are no other sources for the kind of stuff Phil writes.

It was also somewhat refreshing to see you express some opinions (not always favorable) on TheoCorp's early moves, particularly regarding the rule 5 stuff. And your excitement about Rizzo carries a lot of weight for me, too. Let's hope you find some more guys to give us some hope and that some of the lesser knowns that seem to have promise keep growing.

For me, what Phil brings most is his first hand evaluations and opinions on Cubs minor league 'prospects' in actual game situations (i.e. ST Exhibitions, EXT Spring games, AZ Rookie league, Fall Instructional, etc.). It's also obvious he has access to certain Cubs player development people as well as other organizations scouts/player development people. From this base, he puts his evaluations in print.

For me, Law, Sickels, Callis, Goldstein,et al do way more talking/texting MLB scouts/minor league people than actually viewing prospects 2, 3, 4 times a year. Since they're all national writers, I understand they have to do that to 'cover' 30 major league teams. Again for me, I take all of that type of evaluation with a major grain of salt.

At the end of the day (and to use an analogy from the intelligence community), I prefer boots on the ground intel to aerial/satellite recon.

Last point, at the end of the day all 'scouting' reports on Top 10/15/25/30 prospects is future predictions written in Jello. If/until they reach the majors (or even AA), adjust when the league adjusts to them, then adjust again, no one knows how any of them are going to turn out.

So, based on that, please keep the reports coming AZ Phil and I would love to take our families out to Vito's in Mesa for pizza (if it's still there) the next time we're in the Valley.

Ditto. Phil provides updates throughout the season from the Cubs activities in Mesa, we'd get that info nowhere else without him. Thanks AZP......

n

n.

Geez GEORGE! So enthralled you had to post it three times?

Still figuring out how to use this computer.

try hitting the save button once.

Here here

The Wizard of Az...

Yes!

Thanks for another great spring, Phil.

Right on AZ Phil!

Thanks AZ Phil! Thanks Rob G.!

And thank you to everyone for making this such an enjoyable place.

thank you phil!!

Thank you Phil!!!!!!!!

Thanks, everybody.

Recent comments

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  • For sure! Russell and Baez are the first infielders in a while to make me think of star defensive players in football or basketball--it's almost like they force turnovers, and they definitely play the field with a degree of athletic aggression I'd expect from a linebacker.

    [Edit: Was meant to be a response to JB above.]

    Charlie 17 min 22 sec ago view
  • tebow hit a HR in the 1st pitch he sees in instructs..lulz.

    crunch 24 min 40 sec ago view
  • I don't think his issue(s) will have anything to do with it. He hasn't hit since he's been back. Coghlan has the hot hand.

    Tito 2 hours 48 min ago view
  • I'm not a denier but definitely a skeptic on Strop and Grimm, who struggle with fastball control. Strop doesn't go near the ninth inning, and note how Grimm couldn't close the deal even with a 5-run lead. So Felix Pena comes in and gets the 3-pitch game-ending strikeout like it was nothing.

    And how about Almora missing that very catchable ball? That was unexpected after all the hype about his glove.

    When Trea Turner misses balls like that--which he does--I draw conclusions from it. It seems to be the one chink in his armor. But I'll give Almora another chance.

    VirginiaPhil 2 hours 53 min ago view
  • Assuming Soler is good to go, I think it comes down to 3 of the following 4: Coghlan, TLS, Sczcur, Almora. Of the 4, TLS seems to be the hardest to justify, particularly given his behavioral issues.

    billybucks 2 hours 58 min ago view
  • I'm wondering if both Coghlan and LaStella make it. With Javy being able to play all the infield spots and Joe maybe wanting late-inning D when Soler plays (assuming he plays), hence either Szczur or Almora, I think LaStella might be the odd guy out.

    Tito 3 hours 1 min ago view
  • Hendricks needs the win, anyway, plus a couple more.

    My hunch is that Hendricks wins the Cy Young . . . for Lester. That is, without Hendricks tipping the scale toward the Cubs, Scherzer tops Lester.

    VirginiaPhil 3 hours 14 min ago view
  • Old Cub fans remember when Ken Hubbs died at 22 in the crash of a small plane he was piloting in a storm in Utah in 1964. But Hubbs was not an elite power pitcher like Score and Fernandez. Score lived a long time after the accident but it was (effectively) career-ending.

    VirginiaPhil 3 hours 18 min ago view
  • HAGSAG: Since I've only seen them throw in one game and in one "live" BP session, all I can do is provide initial first impressions.

    Brailyn Marquez is listed at 6'4 but is probably more like 6'5 or 6'6. I would describe him as a younger version of Bryan Hudson, throwing a ton of ground balls but not getting a lot of swings & misses (yet). Because of his size he could eventually grow into more velocity, but right now he's mostly a pitch-to-contact guy. He generally throws strikes.

    Arizona Phil 3 hours 23 min ago view
  • Phil, do Marquez and Ocampo look like prospects?

    Hagsag 7 hours 8 min ago view
  • It helps when your defense has declared war against the H in WHIP.

    Still impressive.

    John Beasley 7 hours 10 min ago view
  • Lackey finishes with a 3.35 ERA. Currently good for 13th in the NL. Not bad for a guy signed to be a #3 starter in a 15-team league.

    He is also 6th in WHIP. Pretty amazing: Cubs have the #2, #3, #5 and #6 starters in WHIP.

    billybucks 14 hours 4 min ago view
  • Completely meaningless game, but Pena striking out Sean the Turd to with the bases loaded was very fun.

    Other than one bad game in SD, Pena has been very good. Even with that game, 9.0 IP, 13 K, 0.89 WHIP.

    billybucks 14 hours 8 min ago view
  • 101 wins...most since 1910 (104).

    neat. ...or sad. pick one. pick both. 'murica.

    crunch 14 hours 24 min ago view
  • Just looked up Grimm's stats -- after a great run, he gave up 2 runs vs. MIL then didn't pitch for 10 days. Don't remember why?

    billybucks 14 hours 27 min ago view
  • Sean Rodriguez's helmet looks like it's taking a dump

    jacos 14 hours 31 min ago view