Lester Goes One-for-Four at Minor League Camp

Cubs #1 prospect Gleyber Torres belted an RBI double and a single and scored a run, and side-armin' RHP Preston Morrison (Cubs 2015 8th round draft pick - TCU) tossed 3.2 IP of no-hit/no-run relief, helping the iowa Cubs edge the Tennessee Smokies 2-1 in Minor League Camp game action this morning on Field #1 at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ. 

The game was called after six innings of play. 

Jon Lester got the start for the Smokies (pitching against Iowa) and threw five innings (68 pitches - 78% strikes), allowing two runs (both earned) on six hits (five singles and a double) and no walks, with five strikeouts (two swinging) and 8/0 GO/AO. He made three errant pick-off attempts at 1st base (with the baserunner advancing to 2nd each time), but he did pick-off Dan Vogelbach. Lester also one-hopped SS Carlos Penalver on a 1-6 FC, and Penalver made a nice play just to keep the ball from bounding into CF. 

Matt Murton saw his first game action of the Spring after undergoing an emergency appendectomy on February 26th, working as a DH for the Iowa squad and batting four times. He went 2-4 with a single, a double, a 6-3 GO, and a called third strike (all four PA versus Lester). He was running the bases full-tilt, and looks to be very close to 100%.      

David Ross was Lester's catcher (natch), and he went 0-4 (three fly outs and a 6-4-3 DP), batting once in each of the first four innings. He also threw out a runner trying to steal 3rd. Ross left the game when Lester did. 

The game also featured the first game action for RHRP Jose Rosario since 2014 (he missed the 2015 season after undergoing TJS last April), and he worked a scoreless inning. The 25-year old Rosario was signed by the Cubs as a 17-year old IFA out of the Dominican Republic in 2008, and although he was eligible to be a minor league 6YFA post-2015, he opted to return to the Cubs organization in 2016. Rosario shares a similar background with Cubs 3B prospect Jeimer Candelario, in that both were born in New York City, but moved to the Dominican Republic when they were children.  

Four players were added to the Iowa roster for the game, with RHP Preston Morrison moving up from the Tennessee group, SS Gleyber Torres and 2B Ian Happ moving up from the Myrtle Beach squad, and 3B Wladimir Galindo moving up from the South Bend group.


 (updated daily)

Here is the box score frrom the game: 


IOWA LINEUP
:
X. Matt Murton, DH #1: 2-4 (6-3, 2B, 1B, K)
NOTE: Murton batted third in the top of the 1st inning, and second in the bottom of the 3rd, 4th, and 5th
1 Gleyber Torres, SS: 2-2 (1B, 2B, R, RBI)
2. Matt Clark, DH #2: 0-2 (K, 5-2 FC)
3a. Bijan Rademacher, DH #3: 0-1 (1-3)
3b. Ben Carhart, PH: 0-1 (1-6 FC, RBI, CS)
4. Ian Happ, 2B: 0-2 (K, 6-3) 
5a. Will Remillard, C: 0-1 (K)
5b. Cael Brockmeyer, PH-C: 0-1 (K)
6. Kelly Dugan, RF: 0-2 (4-3, F-7)
7. Dan Vogelbach, 1B: 1-2 (1B, L-9, PO)
8. Anthony Giansanti, LF: 1-2 (3-1, 1B)
9a. Mike O'Neill, CF: 0-1 (3-1)
9b. Bryant Flete, PH-CF: 0-1 (K)
10. Wladimir Galindo, 3B: 1-1 (1B, R)

TENNESSEE LINEUP:
X. David Ross, C: 0-4 (F-7, F-8, 6-4-3 DP, F-7)
NOTE: Ross batted second in the bottom of the 1st & 2nd innings, sixth in the bottom of the 3rd, and third in the bottom of the 4th 
1a. Trey Martin, CF: 0-1 (K, F-8 SF, RBI)
1b. Danny Lockhart, PH: 0-1 (4-3) 
2. Chesny Young, 2B: 1-1 (1B, BB) 
3. Billy McKinney, RF: 0-1 (K, BB)
4. Mark Zagunis, LF: 0-2 (L-8, K)
5. Jason Vosler, 3B: 0-1 (BB, F-8)
6. Jacob Rogers, 1B: 0-1 (BB, 3-1)
7a. David Bote, DH #1: 0-1 (P-3)
7b. Erick Castillo PH-C: 0-1 (F-9)
8. Victor Caratini, DH #2: 0-1 (BB, K, R)
9. Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-2 (1B, 1-3)
10. Shawon Dunston Jr, DH #3: 0-1 (HBP, 4-3) 
 
IOWA PITCHERS
1. Tyler Skulina: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 4 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 1 WP, 0/5 GO/AO, 49 pitches (27 strikes)
2. Preston Morrison: 3.2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 GIDP, 5/3 GO/AO, 42 pitches (26 strikes)

TENNESSEE PITCHERS:  
1. Jon Lester: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 5 K, 1 PO, 8/0 GO/AO, 68 pitches (53 strikes) 
2. Jose Rosario: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 0/2 GO/AO, 16 pitches (11 strikes) 

IOWA ERRORS: NONE 

TENNESSEE ERRORS: 3 
1. P Jon Lester: E-1 (errant pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner to advance to 2nd) 
2. P Jon Lester: E-1 (errant pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner to advance to 2nd) 
3. P Jon Lester: E-1 (errant pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner to advance to 2nd) 

TENNESSEE CATCHERS DEFENSE
David Ross: 1-1 CS

ATTENDANCE: 50 

WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 70's 

Comments

Check out John Arguello's (Cubs Den) report from the quad side of Minor League Camp: 

link  

thanks for the "expanded coverage" links you've been passing on lately. ...and for the horror show reporting on lester throwing. it's spring...it's spring...it's spring...i'm gonna keep reminding myself that. would someone like rizzo at 1st have stopped some of those wild throws? his great D is in play even if it wouldn't have resulted in an out. keeping the runner close and scared of the possibility of an out is generally the greater benefit than the rare(ish) out anyway.

Phil, is Morrison being stretched out to start?

AZBOBBOP: Yes, Preston Morrison is being stretched-out as a starter. He piggy-backed with Tyler Skulina in Tuesday's game, but Morrison is primed as a starter. Where he will be at the start of the minor league regular season is still TBD, but at present Morrison is assigned to the AA Tennessee squad. If I had to guess, I would say Morrison will probably be in the starting rotation at Myrtle Beach on Opening Day. 

BTW, another 2015 draft pick (LHP Ryan Kellogg - 5th round - Arizona State) is also assigned to the Tennessee squad at Minor League Camp and (like Morrison) he is being stretched-out as a starter, too. So both Morrison and Kellogg could very well be in the starting rotation at either Tennessee or Myrtle Beach (but more likely Myrtle Beach) at the start of the regular season. 

And David Berg (2015 6th round pick - UCLA) and Craig Brooks (2015 7th round pick - Catawba College) are also assigned to the AA Tennessee squad at Minor League Camp, and both could start the season in either the Tennessee or Myrtle Beach bullpen (TBD).

Morrison, Kellogg, Berg, and Brooks are the only pitchers from the 2015 Cubs draft class assigned to the Tennessee squad at Minor League Camp, which is an indication that the Cubs consider those four to be advanced enough to move quickly through the pipeline (like 2015 Cubs Minor League pitcher of the Year Ryan Williams did last year, after being drafted out of East Carolina in the 10th round of the 2014 draft). 

Seems like Sox told LaRoche no more kid in lockeroom, so he retired Dejan Kovacevic ‏@Dejan_Kovacevic 6m6 minutes ago Dejan Kovacevic Retweeted Tebow to Bears That's VERY impressive. Winner. Dejan Kovacevic added, @Dejan_Kovacevic @whitesox They didn't want his kid in the clubhouse this season like he was last year. 4 retweets 5 likes Good for the White Sox.

That can't be right. How does an issue like this get blown up into a $36 million dollar contract being cut short? Wouldn't somebody sit down and have a reasonable conversation with him, like "no family in the clubhouse 2 hours before game time" and then that's that? Bizarre. I'm not buying it.

According to Kenny Williams he told LaRoche can be in there but "not 100%" of the time.

That's different than what I said, though- You set a rule that applies to everybody, based in a focus on the team winning. If you are singling out one person's kid, then yes, I see why LaRoche would automatically react negatively.

#thoughtsandprayers Bob Nightengale ‏@BNightengale 23m23 minutes ago Chris Sale has. Adam LaRoche and Drake LaRoche uniforms hanging in his Whitesox locker

what a bunch of morans.

g.stanton and a slew of slugging marlins lost a backfield HR derby to their 51 year old hitting coach...some dude named barry bonds. unfortunately there's supposedly no video of the event.

cubs load the bases with 0 outs...2 pitches later, 3 outs, 0 runs scored (popout, double play).

Shark !!!! IP H ER BB SO 4.0 8 7 1 3 3 hrs too

another bad day for rondon...really bad...

Too early to panic, but he does not look great. If Ramirez is back, then at least equal = equal.

Is Baez hurt? /slid into first

doesn't seem like it...though JD had a lot to say about how much he doesn't like seeing anyone slide into 1st, especially during spring. speaking of injuries... "On the injury front, veteran outfielder Shane Victorino (tight right calf) is expected to play by this weekend. Matt Szczur (oblique) is progressing and Tommy La Stella (strained left calf) is taking ground balls. "Nothing is horribly wrong with any of those guys," Maddon said. "We are just being cautious."" http://m.cubs.mlb.com/news/article/167742732/...

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  • crunch 3 hours 32 min ago (view)

    cole hamels continues to suck.

    3.1, 4.1, 3.1 innings his last 3 starts.  he hasn't been the same since coming back after his july injury rest.

     

  • crunch 4 hours 29 min ago (view)

    so far so good...

    go schwarb

    it's kinda frightening that schwarb in LF is a better option than schwarb playing 1st with rizzo out.  i wonder how bad it really is...

     

  • crunch 7 hours 17 min ago (view)

    zobrist / cast / bryant / schwarb / contreras / caratini (1st) / heyward / hoe / ham

     

  • crunch 7 hours 19 min ago (view)

    rizzo to wear a boot for 5-7 days then they'll see where it goes from there.

     

  • Charlie 8 hours 12 min ago (view)

    It makes sense, for sure. I'm more concerned about the Brewers than the Nats, though. The optimal outcome would be Cubs sweep, Nats sweep, Brewers get swept. Can't pass the Nats that way, but can take the division lead and put the Brewers further back.

    Odds on that (using Fangraphs #s):

    Cubs sweep: 24.6%

    Cubs sweep and Cards get swept: 4.9%

    Cubs sweep, Cards get swept, Brewers get swept: 0.29%

    I can dream.

     

  • bradsbeard 10 hours 4 min ago (view)

    I just want whatever will maximize the odds of the playoffs. The Cubs have the opportunity to take care of the Cards themselves. Ideally there is still a wild card slot for them if they can’t. 

     

  • Charlie 10 hours 20 min ago (view)

    Absolutely agree. Winning the division is both much better for playoff progression chances *and* far more satisfying than coming in second to the Cards. I root for whatever gets them closest to that at this point.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 10 hours 45 min ago (view)

    Gotta root against StL. I don’t want a wild card appearance. I don’t like our chances at home vs Scherzer, Strasburg, or Corbin a whole lot more than I do in Washington.

     

  • bradsbeard 11 hours 32 min ago (view)

    I’d almost feel better if the Cards took 2 of 3 from the Nats. If the Cubs sweep, they'd be just 1 game back of the Cards and a half game up on the Nats.  

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 12 hours 8 min ago (view)

    Even worse for StL. 7 vs Cubs, 3 vs Nationals

    The fate of Cubs and Cardinals season is going to come down to 7 games against one another. Cubs gotta win 5 if they want to win division I think. Good thing 4 of 7 are at Wrigley.

     

  • crunch 15 hours 21 min ago (view)

    13 games left for CHC...7 vs STL

    13 games left for MIL...all vs teams under .500 (SD, PIT, CIN, COL)

    buckle up...it's gonna be a "fun" couple of weeks.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 15 hours 44 min ago (view)

    The way MIL is playing makes me... uneasy. Too bad we didn’t bury them. Especially because they won’t play anyone with a winning record from here on out.

    That said, much as I LOATHE the team and fans at Wrigley North, I’d still rather see them take the division than the shitbirds.

     

  • crunch 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    bote really needs to overcome his weird habbit of trying to duck under high/inside pitches rather than leaning out of them.

     

  • crunch 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    47 cubs runs in this 3 game series...14 HRs.

     

  • crunch 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    STL up by 1...MIL with 2 outs, bases loaded, top 9th.

    r.braun grand slam.  MIL leads by 3.

    barring some crazy comebacks, STL's lead should shrink to 2 games.

     

  • crunch 1 day 8 hours ago (view)

    sprained right ankle for rizzo...xray showed no break...MRI tomorrow