Iowa Cubs

The Night the Lights Went on In Bushville

Like an obedient child emulating a revered parent the Iowa Cubs are at work on the installation of a new state-of-the-art HD video board in time for their home opener on April 17th.

At 24x64 or 1,536 square feet the magic screen will pale in comparison to the 42x95, 3990 sq. ft. colossus that’s being erected to tower above Wrigley Field’s left field bleachers and Waveland Avenue. It will be less than half the size but is certainly imposing enough to be viewed, let us say, as a Triple A scale model.

It’s high time for an upgrade. Depending on the vantage point and the mood of the sun the new board’s predecessor could be effectively invisible and in recent years has displayed more marketing and promo filler than, for instance, player stats. Not that that trend’s likely to change.

Speaking of trends at America’s ballparks, you know of course that all of this modern malarkey traces directly back to an event that happened right here in Des Moines, long a baseball hotbed, on May 2, 1930, right?

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Harden Makes It Look Easy at Fitch Park

Rich Harden threw four shutout innings and Welington Castillo's two run home run capped a five-run 5th, as the Iowa Cubs (Cubs AAA affiliate) edged the Sacramento River Cats (Oakland A's AAA affiliate) 5-4 before an unusually large Minor League Camp crowd of 50+ at cool & breezy Fitch Park Field #3 this afternoon

Cubs Pitching Coach Larry Rothschild and Assistant Pitching Coach Lester Strode were in attendance, and the place was absoluely crawling with beat writers, bloggers, and assorted Cubs fans intent on watching an actual Cubs major league pitcher throw on a day when the big club had the day off, and they were not disappointed.

However, very few stayed for the whole game. 

So for those of you who want to know how Harden looked, but also just HAVE to know how the Iowa Cubs did it,.. here is... the... rest...of... the... story...

Hill Climbing in the Flatlands

Expecting to see the enigmatic Rich Hill make a not so triumphant return to the scene of some of his finest professional work, I headed to the ballpark last night planning to call it a night whenever he did.

He only lasted five innings but I stayed for a sixth when it was assigned to Scott Eyre.

The battery in the starting lineup was Hill squared, and after three innings it was hard to say whose arm was more impressive, the left of Rich or the right of Koyie. At that point Rich had fanned three but Koyie had thrown out a man stealing and picked another off of second.

For the record, Rich Hill allowed seven hits and two runs while walking one and striking out five on the night. I had him for 47 strikes among his 78 pitches, but left with other less quantifiable impressions of his work.

Hill's misses weren't close. The 'balls' he threw were so flagrant that the batter was rarely tempted by them.

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How Does Gallagher Spell Relief? W-A-L-K-I-N-G...

I delayed my end-of-homestand post for a day so I could see how Sean Gallagher followed up on his brilliant outing from last week.

The results? Mixed.

Gallagher retired the first ten Fresno hitters he faced. He entered the sixth having surrendered only one run and retired the first two routinely before an infield single dripped from the faucet. A stolen base followed, then an intentional walk, then an accidental walk and Gallagher called it a night, leaving the bases loaded and the water running for Carmen Pignatiello.

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  • First team to 60 wins! Onward to 70, 80, 90 and 100!

    billybucks 4 hours 17 min ago view
  • I. Hate. The. Mets.

    billybucks 4 hours 45 min ago view
  • OK Marlins -- take 'em down. Fernandez, at home, tomorrow for the Fish.

    Gotta say, though -- as much as I can't stand them, the Cardinals have had some very impressive late-inning wins against premier closers.

    billybucks 4 hours 46 min ago view
  • Very impressive that he hit a 3-2 curve ball. Such a dynamic ballplayer. If he ever learns the strike zone....

    billybucks 4 hours 52 min ago view
  • If Jason Hammel doesn't get a potato chip sponsorship deal, somebody messed up. Attaboy, Jason!

    billybucks 4 hours 55 min ago view
  • I am looking forward to AChap facing the Cardinals.

    The E-Man 5 hours 3 min ago view
  • Sure is fun to watch them score finally. To think they were no-hit until the 7th...

    The E-Man 5 hours 15 min ago view
  • Got to admit it - it was comforting seeing Rondon come out for the eighth after just taking a two run lead ... And put the hammer down with a 7 pitch inning. Good stuff

    Eric S 5 hours 20 min ago view
  • GRAND SLAM RUSSELL

    blown the hell open...7 run lead

    crunch 5 hours 21 min ago view
  • 11 hits off Wainwright tonight. Everything going right for the Cards right now. Motherfucking motherfuckers.

    The E-Man 5 hours 31 min ago view
  • it was more no-doubt than bryant's HR. it wont make any end-of-season highlight reels, but that one was booked to leave on contact.

    crunch 5 hours 40 min ago view
  • Javy! Javy! Javy!

    How sweet was that - Cranked it!

    393 happy feet

    Eric S 5 hours 47 min ago view
  • baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaez!

    cubs take a 2 run lead in the 7th. sweet.

    crunch 5 hours 50 min ago view
  • ...and the Cards tie and take the lead in the 9th. off Familia.

    blockhead25 5 hours 55 min ago view
  • Familia blows his first save of the season -- gives up 2 in 9th to the Cards.

    Not much going our way these days.

    billybucks 5 hours 55 min ago view
  • bryant's back!

    no-doubt HR towering to CF...tie game.

    crunch 6 hours 12 min ago view