In what was one of the better performances by a Cubs starting pitcher at HoHoKam Park in quite some time, Jeff Samardzija showed Top-of-the-Rotation stuff while throwing six innings of shutout ball (67 pitches - 43 strikes), allowing just three hits and a walk while striking out five. Three relievers followed with three more shutout innings, as the Cubs blanked the Cleveland Indians 2-0 in Cactus League action this afternoon in Mesa, AZ.
(thanks to aaronb for the headline, now enough with the jokes)
The Cubs shortstop phenom Starlin Castro has been accused of sexual assaulting a woman last fall. The event occurred on September 29th, right after the Cubs season ended and Castro flew back to the Dominican Republic.
totally random trade thought if baseball was run on a PS3...
If you were the newly minted gonna-be-totally-awesome-and-do-everything-my-way GM, would you trade Starlin Castro for Jason Heyward? (Heyward is 7 months older than Castro).
I'm about 40/60 on that idea with a slight preference to keep Castro.
But what about Castro/McNutt for Heyward/Teheran?
the plot thickens...I'd have to say yes as Cub GM, although I imagine some romantic Cubs fans couldn't part ways with Darlin' Starlin.
Unless Starlin Castro goes 0 for the rest of the season, he'll get his 200th hit sometime over the next 6 games and when he does, he'll be the 10th such major league to do it before their age 22 season.
The Savior knocked out 3 hits including his 9th home run last year and is up to 190 hits. That's 10 hits shy of the magic 200 mark for the math impaired. He has 15 games to do it, which I don't believe will be a problem unless Q-Ball decides he needs another life lesson on the bench. By my back of the envelope calculations, if he stays healthy, he's on pace to reach 3,000 hits by age 36, sometime during the 2026 season.
- Baseball America took to some list making and recently rated the Cubs 2005 draft as the worst of the lot. A look at the 2006 draft, the first under Tim Wilken sees them moving up 5 spots.
$11.5 million investment in Tyler Colvin (1), Jeff Samardzija (5) has yet to pay off.
That year the Cubs lost their 2nd, 3rd and 4th round picks by signing Bob Howry (Type A), Scott Eyre (Type A) and Jacque Jones (Type B). Their 1st round pick was protected since it was in the top half of the draft. Other notable (notorious?) picks from that draft were Steve Clevenger, Jacob Renshaw (traded to Orioles for Trachsel), Chris Huseby ($1.3M bonus, released by Boston in August), Marcus Hatley, Matt Camp and Blake Parker.
- Quade has named his Opening Day starter and it won't be Zambrano's 7th straight start which would have tied Ferguson Jenkins for the Cubs record. Instead it will be Ryan Dempster, followed by Z and then Matt Garza. Z will get the road opener start against the Brewers. Presumambly the last two spots are still open with Randy Wells and Carlos Silva likely occupying them with James Russell and Andrew Cashner on the outside looking in.
Things have gotten so bad with the Cubs that Ron Santo's heavy sighs and plaintive wails and exclamations of "C'mon!" and "No!" actually capture precisely the way I now feel while listening to or watching the action.
Tuesday night the Cubs fell to a season-worst 15 games under .500, losing their seventh in a row, 4-3, to the Brewers. (Lest we forget, the Brewers had lost five in a row before this series began.)
More on the Cub Way.
Martinez is one of my least favorite pitchers in baseball. I'd love to see a game like yesterday's against him.
Send Soler down!
Awesome thanks AZ
Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.
Ben Zobrist is very enjoyable to watch!!!!!!
given that he seems to only be throwing low 90s these days rather than the 93-96mph he used to throw, along with his wildness issues this year, he may end up passing through.
i dunno if something is wrong with him physically or his past shoulder issues has rendered him what he currently is, but he's been throwing a lot of sliders he can't control well and his fastball isn't as sharp. even when his slider wasn't working in a game he was still throwing a lot of them.
Any scuttlebutt on where Neil Ramirez gets traded?
He seems better than some of the relievers on competitive teams. He ought to bring more than the waiver fee.
My guess? Toronto.
PHIL: It seems as if Paniagua has always played 1B with the Cubs. At 6'2 and 180#, what is his frame like? String bean? Have you seen him bulk up? Where do you project him? Thanks.
Phil, what's your thoughts on which position players are going to Eugene and who is staying in AZL?
Ahhh...way to bring me down BB.
Still - a win tomorrow will be an acheivement regardless.
Don't mean to spoil your mood, but with tonight's win the are 3-5 on the trip with one to play.
While I'm bringing the room down -- Richard comes in to pitch the 9th with a 12-1 lead...and can't finish the game. Woof.
For some reason
It is remarkable how my mood has become uplifted with one game against the Cards.
That is sick.
But, I have been an addict for a long time.
A W tomorrow and it will be a .500 road trip.
Also, to keep the losses in perspective, if the Cubs were to lose 10 games a month - a lot at this current pace - they still end up 102-60. Six months of the ride!
So, the Mesa Cubs should be solid this summer in the AZL Rookie League?
And, I like the, "But did you know" lead in there. Something a little different.
I can tell really like this group of hitters in AZ right now.
What pitchers out there, other than Cease, should we be excited about?
Thanks as always for the info.
back on the Run Differential hunt... (aka The Hunt for Blue October)
These are the 2016 Cubs I know and love. Also digging that Cardinals OF (lack of) defense.