Baez Owns Lester, Apparently

Jeffrey Baez belted a solo home run leading off the game and contributed two RBI doubles later in the contest (all three run-scoring hits coming off Jon Lester), but it wasn't enough as Carlos Penalver drilled a solo HR leading off the bottom of the 1st inning, Wladmir Galindo smacked a solo shot onto the freeway berm beyond the left field fence in the bottom of the 6th, and Jonathan Sierra belted a two-run home run in the bottom of the 7th, helping the Iowa Cubs (AAA affiliate of the Chicago Cubs) rally to tie the Tennessee Smokies (Cubs AA affiliate) 7-7 on Field #6, and Carlos Sepulveda singled, doubled, and tripled, scored two runs, and drove-in two more, Trent Giambrone belted a three-run HR, walked, stole a base, and scored two runs, Connor Myers doubled, walked, stole two bases, and scored a run, and RHSP Thomas Hatch (Cubs 2016 3rd round draft pick - Oklahoma State) hurled three innings of shutout ball with five strikeouts, leading the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (Cubs Hi-A affiliate) to a 9-1 victory over the South Bend Cubs (Lo-A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs) on Field #5, in Minor League Camp intrasquad doubleheader game action this morning at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ.   

Chicago Cubs ace LHSP Jon Lester came over to Minor League Camp to get his scheduled game work, but the Tennessee Smokies were ready for him, hammering him to the tune of six runs on nine hits (including three doubles, two triples, and a home run). Lester eventually recorded 12 outs (including three strikeouts) and did not issue any walks, but he left the game with his team trailing 6-3.  

Willson Conteras was Lester's catcher, and he batted five times in six innings, going 1-4 with a single and a walk, and two strikeouts. He also was thrown out attempting to steal a base. Defensively he was 0-1 CS.

Sometimes called the "Other Baez" by those who follow the Cubs farm system, Jeffey Baez was signed by the Cubs previous regime as a 16-year old International Free-Agent out of Venezuela in July 2010. Now 23, the "other Baez" has moved somewhat slowly (fits & starts) through the Cubs system over the past six years, only occasionally showing the five-tool package the Cubs thought they had when they signed him. But he does have skills (plus-arm, plus-power, plus-speed), and he was MVP of Cubs Extended Spring Training in both 2013 and 2014 (he led the EXST Cubs in home runs both seasons), and he tied for the league lead in stolen bases in the Carolina League in 2016 (built like an NFL running back, Baez is an excellent base stealer). But 2017 is a make-or-break year for the Jeffrey Baez Cub connection, because he is eligible to be an MLB Rule 55 six-year minor league free-agent post-2017, and so the Cubs must decide by 5 PM (Eastern) five days after the final game of the World Series whether to add him to their MLB 40-man roster, or let him walk away as a minor league free-agent (or possibly trade him before he hits free-agency). He is projected to be the starting RF at AA Tennessee in 2017 (although he can play all three outfield positions), so we will just have to wait and see how Baez performs at the AA level, and what the Cubs will choose to do with him post-2017. I'm not sure the Cubs will want to let a talent like Jeffrey Baez just walk away after investing so much time and effort in his development.

It was a "bullpen day" for both the South Bend Cubs and Tennessee Smokies, with a number of pitchers battling for pen jobs getting an inning of work. The best performance of the day among the relievers who threw in the two games was turned-in by Iowa Cubs RHRP Daniel Corcino, who threw high-octane gas past three Smokies hitters while striking out the side1-2-3  in the 7th. Tennessee RHRP Scott Effross also struck out the side 1-2-3 in his one inning of work.

Here are the box scores from the two games:

FIELD #5

SOUTH BEND LINEUP:
1. Jose Gutierrez, CF: 1-3 (P-6, 1B, 6-3, BB, SB)
2. Andruw Monasterio, SS-DH: 0-4 (F-9, K, E-3, F-8, CS)
3a. Jhonny Pereda, C: 0-3 (K, K, 4-3)
3b. Miguel Amaya, C: 1-1 (2B, RBI)
4a. Kwang-Min Kwon, RF: 2-3 (E-5, 1B, 1B)
4b. Zach Davis, RF: 0-1 (K)
5a. Jose Paniagua, 1B: 0-1 (HBP, P-4)
5b. Michael Cruz, 1B: 1-2 (1B, 5-3)
6a. Ruben Reyes, LF: 0-3 (6-4-3 DP, 4-6-3 DP, 6-3 DP)
6b. Luis Ayala, LF: 0-0 (BB)
7a. Adonis Paula, 3B: 0-3 (K, K, 5-3)
7b. Richard Nunez, PH: 0-1 (4-6 FC, SB)
8a. Edgar Rondon, 2B: 1-3 (K, 1B, 6-3, SB)
8b. Yeiler Peguero, 2B: 0-1 (K)
9. Zach Short, DH-SS: 1-2 (1B, K, HBP, R)

MYRTLE BEACH LINEUP:
1. Carlos Sepulveda, 2B: 3-4 (3B, 6-3, 2B, 1B, 2 R, 2 RBI, CS)
2. D. J. Wilson, CF: 1-5 (K, 4-3, P-5, 1B, K, RBI)
3a. Connor Myers, LF: 1-2 (2B, K, BB, R, RBI, 2 SB)
3b. Tolly Filotei, LF: 0-1 (1-3 SH, 4-3)
4. Matt Rose, 3B: 0-2 (5-3, 4-3, BB, F-8 SF, R, RBI)
5. Trent Giambrone, DH: 1-3 (K, BB, HR, 6-3, 2 R, 3 RBI, SB)
6. Robert Garcia, RF: 0-3 (K, 1-3 SH, F-7, 3-U)
7a. Tyler Alamo, 1B: 1-2 (E-5, 2B, R, RBI)
7b. Kevin Zamudio, 1B: 0-1 (F-8, BB)
8a. Sam Tidaback, C: 0-1 (HBP, P-3)
8b. Franklin Tineo, C: 0-1 (BB, 4-6 FC, SB, CS)
9a. Bryant Flete, SS: 0-1 (P-5, HBP)
9b. Delvin Zinn, PR-SS: 0-1 (BB, F-9, 2 R, SB)

SOUTH BEND PITCHERS:
1. Oscar de la Cruz: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GO/AO
2. Manuel Rodriguez: 1.0, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1/1 GO/AO
3. Colton Freeman: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GO/AO
4. Ho-Young Son: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1/1 GO/AO
5. Nathan Sweeney: 0.1 IP, 2 H, 4 R (4 ER), 1 BB, 1 HBP, 1 HR, 0/1 GO/AO
6. Andry Rondon: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 0/2 GO/AO
7. Pablo Ochoa: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 2 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 0 K, 2/1 GO/AO 
8. Junior Marte: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 2/1 GO/AO
9. Javier Assad: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GO/AO

MYRTLE BEACH PITCHERS:
1. Thomas Hatch: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 1/2 GO/AO
2. Tyler Peyton: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 1/1 GO/AO
3. Dillon Maples: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GO/AO
4. Jose Leidenz: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1/0 GO/AO
5. Michael Rucker: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 2/0 GO/AO
6. Tanner Griggs: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 0/1 GO/AO
7. Mark Malave: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GO/AO

SOUTH BEND ERRORS: 2
1. 3B Adonis Paula: E-5 (dropped pop fly allowing batter to reach base safely)
2. P Nathan Sweeney: E-1 (errant pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner to advance to 2nd)

MYRTLE BEACH ERRORS: 2
1. 1B Tyler Alamo: E-3 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
2. 1B Kevin Zamudi: E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)

SOUTH BEND CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Jhonny Pereda: 0-3 CS
2. Miguel Amaya: 2-4 CS

MYRTLE BEACH CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Sam Tidaback: 0-2 CS
2. Franklin Tineo: 1-2 CS

MYRTLE BEACH OUTFIELD ASSIST:
RF Robert Garcia threw-out batter (Kwang-Min Kwon) attempting to stretch single into double

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FIELD #6

TENNESSEE LINEUP:
1. Jeffrey Baez, RF: 3-4 (HR, 2B, 2B, K, R, 3 RBI)
2. Daniel Spingola, LF: 0-4 (4-3, K, 4-3, K)
3. Cael Brockmeyer, 1B: 1-4 (K, 3B, 6-3, K, R)
4. Jesse Hodges, 3B: 0-4 (L-5, 6-3, P-6, 4-3, RBI)
5a. Tyler Pearson, C-DH: 1-3 (3B, E-5, K, R)
5b. Marcus Mastrobuoni, PH: 1-1 (2B) 
6. Andrew Ely, 2B-SS: 1-4 (6-3, 6-3 DP, 1B, K, RBI, SB)
7a. Aramis Ademan, SS: 2-2 (1B, 1B, 2 R, SB)
7b. Jhonny Bethencourt, 2B: 1-1 (1B, CS)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
8a. Vimael Machin, DH #1: 2-3 (1B, 2B, 4-3, R)
8b. Ian Rice, C: 0-1 (K)
9a. Roberto Caro, CF: 0-1 (K, F-9 SF, RBI)
9b. Brandon Cummins, CF: 0-0 (BB, SB)
10. Jose Gonzalez, DH #2: 0-1 (K)
NOTE SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TWO TIMES THRU BATTING ORDER 

IOWA LINEUP:
X-1. Willson Contreras, C: 1-4 (K, 1B, BB, K, F-8, CS)
NOTE: Contreras batted second in the 1st inning, and led-off the 2nd, 3rd, 4th & 6th innings 
X-2. Ali Solis, C: 1-3 (6-3, 2B, L-6, R)
NOTE: Solis batted fourth in the 6th inning, third in the 7th, and fifth in the 8th 
1a. Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-1 (HR, BB, R, RBI)
1b. Rafael Narea, SS: 0-2 (K, K)
2. Stephen Bruno, 2B: 1-3 (K, 4-3, 2B, RBI)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
3. Yasiel Balaguert, 1B-DH: 1-3 (1B, K, 5-3, R, SB)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
4. Todd Glaesmann, RF-CF: 0-2 (BB, K, K, R)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
5a. Trey Martin, CF: 1-2 (2B, K, 2 RBI)
5b. Jonathan Sierra, RF: 1-2 (F-9, HR, R, 2 RBI)
6. Wladimir Galindo, 3B: 1-4 (P-3, 3-U, HR, F-8, R, RBI)
7. Kevonte Mitchell, LF: 1-3 (F-8, K, 2B, R, SB)
8. Rafael Mejia, DH-1B: 0-3 (P-4, F-9, F-8)

TENNESSEE PITCHERS:
1. Jonathan Martinez: 1.0 IP, 4 H, 3 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 0/2 GO/AO
2. Josh Conway: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K, 0/1 GO/AO
3. Scott Effross: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K
4. Pedro Araujo: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO
5. Cole Brocker: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO
6. Daniel Lewis: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HR
7. Daury Torrez: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 1/1 GO/AO
8. Mario Meza: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 0/2 GO/AO

IOWA PITCHERS:
1. Jon Lester: 4.0 IP, 9 H, 6 R (6 ER), 0 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 1 GIDP, 5/2 GO/AO
2. Jordan Pries: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO
3. Randy McCurry: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO
4. Daniel Corcino: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K
5. Juan Carlos Paniagua: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GO/AO

TENNESSEE ERRORS: NONE

IOWA ERRORS: 1
3B Wladmir Galindo: E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)

TENNESSEE CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Tyler Pearson: 1-2 CS
2. Ian Rice: 0-1 CS

IOWA CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Willson Contreras: 0-1 CS
2. Ali Solis: 1-3 CS   

ATTENDANCE: 63

WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 80's  

Comments

heyward playing CF today...underwood starting.

10 minutes into hawk/steve and the "get off my lawn" bitching about how everyone does everything wrong and how they know how it should be done is already reaching critical levels. ...and as i'm writing about this hawk is bitching about sabermetrics confusing young players making them suck at the plate. i think i got a bingo.

schwarb HR in the top 3rd...big one. also uehara pitched the second...seems to be a "pen day"

Not just players but "latin players". /racist old bastard

i really don't get who this broadcast team entertains aside from angry 50+ year olds. they constantly crap on youth, complain about how everyone is doing things wrong, and being total homers for the home team at the expense of not being able to call the game when they get mega-emotional about things...along with constant "in my days" stories about the 60s-80s when everything went 100% well 100% of the time. the amount of complaining about the youth just doesn't stop, but at least they're ready with the solution for everything that's wrong with them. yeesh.

Phil, did you see any gun readings on Lester? I'm hearing that his velo is way down this spring. I don't put a lot of stock in results, but bad velo + bad results is never a good sign, even in March.

JOHN B: I did not see any velocity readings on Lester, but he was throwing strike after strike with all of his pitches, FWIW. 

It looked to me like it was a glorified "live BP" session from his POV, where he was just trying to throw easy strikes without any deception and get his pitch count up without having to do it in front of paying fans and TV cameras.

Just like you probably don't want to see how they make hot dogs, you also probably best not watch an established MLB pitcher get ready for Opening Day. It isn't always pretty.

Which is fine. I really don't care at all about spring results because guys may go out with a plan (throw all strikes, for example) and not even be focused on results themselves. It's the big velocity drops in March that I do believe are fairly predictive of the season to come, so that's usually what I watch and worry about in March.

Rip Dorothy, jagers for everyone https://twitter.com/cubs_insider/status/84291...

good news...still alive...false report.

Recent comments

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  • crunch 8 hours 2 min ago (view)

    https://images.spot.im/v1/production/gsqady7hf53k5duw7hhf

     

  • tim815 8 hours 31 min ago (view)

    He's better than Taylor Davis.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 9 hours 13 min ago (view)

    He's at a career juncture where I think he is a toss up of he is who he is or there's a little more left for him to achieve. Playing this as his age 27 season he is either in or damn close to his peak. I personally think he doesn't need the everyday playing time, just based on the fact that he's not a top prospect, is older, and doesn't project to be a starter at any spot for a first division team.

     

  • Charlie 10 hours 10 min ago (view)

    This is the take if you see him as a legit prospect. Which, maybe? I know little about him, and his numbers in limited AAA exposure last season were really nice. Maybe a lively ball helps his career.

     

  • bradsbeard 10 hours 28 min ago (view)

    Sounds like a long shot to get a trade done then. Thanks for clarifying!

     

  • Arizona Phil 10 hours 49 min ago (view)

    BRADSBEARD: Before making a trade with the Rule 5 Draft pick's former club, the drafting club must first place the player on Outright Assignment Waivers and any of the other MLB clubs can claim the player for the $50,000 waiver price and assume the Rule 5 Draft obligations (actually it's Rule 6 Selected Player obligations, but you know what I mean). 

     

  • bradsbeard 12 hours 3 min ago (view)

    AZ Phil, the "work out a trade" part of Rule 5 is still a mystery to me. Do the Cubs have to put Megill through waivers and (if he clears) offer him back to SD before they can trade for him?

     

  • Arizona Phil 12 hours 4 min ago (view)

    For those of you who didn't see the game, here are the pitch-velo readings from Wednsdays Cubs - Royals game: 

    Kyle Hendricks: 
    FB: 84-87 
    CH: 77-80 
    CV: 78-80
    NOTES: An amazing pitcher... he's probably in mid-season form right now...  just needs to gradually increase innings...   

    Alec Mills: 
    FB: 89-92 
    SL: 80-82 
    CH: 77-80 
    CV: 66-70 
    NOTES: A legit candidate to be the 5th starter 

     

  • Craig A. 13 hours 3 min ago (view)

    he

     

  • Craig A. 13 hours 3 min ago (view)

    He'll be 27 in May and he's played in 36 games at AAA. Seems like he should be playing regularly. 

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 13 hours 47 min ago (view)

    I really like this idea. They've talked of a 3rd catcher as 26th meaning Phegley, who seems a waste of roster space, good spring notwithstanding. Higgins is far more interesting 

     

  • tim815 16 hours 54 min ago (view)

    Is Brailyn Marquez getting any time in big league camp? Having him around the veterans would seem a solid use of resources.

    Thanks, as always.

     

  • Charlie 17 hours 14 min ago (view)

    Hot take: The Cubs should be considering PJ Higgins as the potential 26th man. 3rd catcher / infield sub who can put the bat on the ball.

    I think I'm just stealing an AZ Phil projection from a while ago, actually. But it makes sense!

     

  • Charlie 18 hours 16 min ago (view)

    Zagunis's stock has dropped a lot since his first exposure to MLB pitching. His 2019 at AAA is particularly alarming given the power spike in that league.

     

  • Hagsag 23 hours 52 min ago (view)

    I see that Dillon Maples hasn't pitched yet. Is he injured or spending time in the lab?

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 7 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have purchased the contract of 26-year old RHRP Jonathan de Marte from Quebec (Frontier League) and he has been assigned to AZL Cubs Blue.

    He is the closer for Team Israel and has no previous experience in affiliated ball.

    He was a NDFA out of the U. of Richmond in 2017 and has been playing independent ball for the past three seasons in the Atlantic League and Can-Am League as well as winter ball in Australia this past winter.