Strop Sharp in 2018 Debut at Riverview

Dairon Blanco ripped a bases-loaded triple with two outs in the top of the 9th as the Stockton Ports (Oakland Athletics Hi-A affiliate) rallied to edge the Myrtle Beach Pelicans (Hi-A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs) 4-3 on Field #6, and Anthony Churlin went 4-4 with a solo HR (off an MLB pitcher) and three singles to lead the Beloit Snappers (A's Lo-A affiliate) to a 4-2 victory over the Cubs Lo-A South Bend affiliate on Field #5, in Cactus League Minor League Camp doubleheader game action Monday afternoon on John Arguello Way at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ.  

Wladimir Galindo collected three hits (two singles and a double), drove-in a run, and scored a run, and RHSP Oscar de la Cruz hurled three shutout innings for Myrtle Beach, and Christopher Morel drilled two doubles (both pulled sharply into the LF corner) for South Bend (the SB Cubs managed only three hits, and Morel had two of them).

South Bend 1B Austin Filiere left the game after being hit on the helmet with a pitch in the bottom of the 5th.  

Both games were called after 8-1/2 innings of play.  
Cubs RHRP Pedro Strop (calf strain) made his 2018 debut in the game on Field #5, and he was outstanding, working 1.1 IP (18 pitches - 89% strikes) and allowing a single while striking out four (all four swinging, all four on hard sliders). Most of the Beloit kids probably have never seen a slider like Strop's so it was a true education for the youngsters, but no question Strop was on his game. Cubs closer Brandon Morrow and LHRP Brian Duensing also saw action in the South Bend game, with Morrow allowing an unearned run on a single and a walk with two strikeouts, and Duensing surrendering a solo HR in his one inning of work (and he also two recorded a couple of punch-outs). 

NRI catcher Ali Solis was sent to the Riverview backfields from the Cubs MLB squad, and he caught Strop, Morrow, and Duensing. AAA Iowa catcher Cael Brockmeyer was also assigned to the South Bend game to warm up the MLB guys in the bullpen, and he got a couple of token AB as a DH as part of the deal. 

Will Remillard (2015 & 2016 TJS) saw his first game action of 2018 on Field #6. He looked healthy and in great shape, throwing out a Stockton baserunner who was attempting to steal 2nd with a strong pinpoint throw, and he also reached base on an opposite-field double that bounced off the warning track and over the fence in RF.  

Here are the abridged box scores from the two games (Cubs players only):


1. Chris Singleton, CF: 0-3 (BB, K, 5-3, K, R, SB)
2a. Ali Solis, C: 0-1 (BB, L-8 DP)
2b. Miguel Amaya, C: 0-2 (P-3, K)
3a. Ramsey Romano, 3B: 0-1 (BB, K)
3b. Rafael Narea, 3B: 0-1 (5-3)
4a. Jonathan Sierra, RF: 0-2 (4-6-3 DP, 4-3)
4b. Kwangmin Kwon, RF: 0-1 (K)  
5a. Nelson Velazquez, LF: 0-2 (6-3, 4-3)
5b. Zach Davis, LF: 0-1 (K)
6a. Luis Vazquez, DH #1: 0-1 (F-9, HBP, R, SB)
6b. Delvin Zinn, 2B: 0-1 (BB, SB)
7a. Austin Filiere, 1B: 0-1 (5-3, HBP)
7b. Rafael Mejia, PR-1B: 0-0 (BB)
8. Jared Young, 2B-DH: 1-3 (1B, 6-U FC+E6, 6-4-3 DP)
9. Cael Brockmeyer, DH #2: 0-2 (L-8, F-8)
10. Christopher Morel, SS: 2-3 (3-1, 2B, 2B)

1. Pedro Strop: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K, 18 pitches (16 strikes)
2. Brandon Morrow: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 1 R (0 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 23 pitches (14 strikes)
3. Brian Duensing: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 1/0 GO/AO, 18 pitches (14 strikes)
4. Javier Assad: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 2 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 3/2 GO/AO, 49 pitches (30 strikes)
5. Jesus Camargo: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 2/0 GO/AO, 27 pitches (18 strikes)
6. Brendan King: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1/1 GO/AO, 8 pitches (8 strikes)

SS Christopher Morel: E-6 (two-out throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely and unearned run to score)

Miguel Amaya: 3-6 CS



1. Austin Upshaw, DH: 0-3 (F-8, K, K, BB)
2. Aramis Ademan, SS: 0-2 (BB, BB, 1-3, K, R, SB)
3. Brandon Hughes, CF: 0-2 (BB, K, BB, L-6 DP, SB)
4. Wladimir Galindo, 3B: 3-4 (1B, F-9, 2B, 1B, R, RBI)
5a. Fernando Kelli, LF: 0-3 (K, 4-3, K)
5b. Kevonte Mitchell, LF: 0-1 (K)
6a. Gustavo Polanco, 1B: 0-2 (F-9, 6-3)
6b. Adonis Paula, 1B: 1-1 (BB, 1B, R)
7a. Chris Carrier, LF: 0-2 (K, F-7)
7b. Yovanny Cuevas, LF: 1-2 (P-6, 2B, RBI)
8a. Yeiler Peguero, 2B: 0-2 (6-3, K)
8b. Jhonny Bethencourt, 2B: 0-2 (4-3, 6-5 FC, RBI)
9a. Will Remillard, C: 1-2 (2B, K)
9b. Michael Cruz, PH-C: 0-1 (BB, P-2)

1. Oscar de la Cruz: 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/5 GO/AO, 34 pitches (22 strikes)
2. Jose Paulino: 4.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 2 K, 2 GIDP, 5/3 GO/AO, 56 pitches (36 strikes)
3. Wyatt Short: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 3 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HBP, 1 BALK, 2/2 GO/AO, 28 pitches (19 strikes)

1. SS Aramis Ademan: E-6 (throwing error allowee batter to reach base safely)
2. 1B Adonis Paula, E-3 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)

1. Will Remillard: 1-1 CS


WEATHER: Partly cloudy with temperatures in the 70's


"Just because it's not official doesn't mean it didn't happen"


Phil, do you think de la Cruz will wind up in Myrtle Beach?


Per Patrick Mooney, Justin Wilson has a minor blister he was recently dealing with (creating Helter Skelter outings).

Has he had it since July? Some blister...

Some blister...

Some may say he's been pee-ing on himself over that time (hear that, Moises)

j.turner (LAD) to miss at least a month with a broken wrist. he got HBP last night.

Hate seeing that happen to anybody. D. Lee didn't seem to be the same hitter after his busted wrist.

Great news about Remillard!

For those wondering about Adbert Alzolay, he apparently pitched against an Angels affiliate yesterday:

Adbert Adzolay showing plus curveball with sharp bite from same arm slot, consistent mechanics. Fastball was in the mid-90s #Cubs

Thanks, beard, that's great to get some positive news on Alzolay. Some kind of physical thing is presumably the reason he's not been pitching, that's the usual reason. But I have wondered if the Cubs did the unusual and just thought they'd delay him for a month, so he'd have some innings left for September/October?

Hi Arizona Phil,

Have any of the pitchers with the South Bend or Eugene/Mesa group impressed you thus far this spring?

Thank you!

O's about to sign a.cobb for some reason...alright then.

I was just wondering what was up with him. So, Greg Holland now stands alone?

as far as impact players who 100% should have a job, yeah. there's still a few decent "secondary/support" guys out there like melky cabrera and yunel escobar.

4/57m on cobb fwiw... 14.25m a year...part of it deferred. he'll start the season in the minors getting ready to join to the team in mid-april.

Recent comments

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The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • crunch 1 day 18 hours ago (view)

    the news is mostly based on a Baseball America article from the 11th (behind a paywall) the gist of it is rather legit rumor-wise, though it's still too far in the future to call it a 100% done deal.

    btw, the cubs have been strongly linked to pursuing christian hernandez for quite a while.  the BA writer that wrote the article about the cubs links has been following c.hernandez since he was a 14yo talent and is quite familiar with him.  that signing probably is in the bag.


  • Wrigley Rat 1 day 20 hours ago (view)

    I don't know much about this website, but they are speculating that the Cubs may sign two of the top International Free Agents available during this signing period: Does anyone know if this sounds legit?


  • Arizona Phil 3 days 42 min ago (view)

    Minnie Minoso was playing in the Mexican League (as a DH) at age 47 and Julio Franco was playing in the Mexican League (as a DH) at age 49, so Mexican League teams clearly do not have a problem with signing older players. 

    And of course the ageless Satchel Paige was still working as a SP in AAA (with the Miami Marlins) into his early 50's (and prior to that he pitched in MLB as late as age 46).  


  • crunch 3 days 1 hour ago (view)

    b.colon has signed to a mexican league team.  woo old dudes.  he turns 47 in may...believed by some to be older.


  • Cubster 3 days 9 hours ago (view)

    Replacing someone like David DeJesus?


  • crunch 4 days 2 hours ago (view)

    mark grace returns to chicago as an analyst/on-air-talent for Marquee.

    he won't be part of the main game calling crew, but will be doing support content during games.


  • Eric S 4 days 6 hours ago (view)

    Increasing levels of smoke concerning a possible Arenado/KB trade

    Get Arenado to agree to push back his opt out a few years or so down the road and this could work out nicely for the Cubs


  • Arizona Phil 4 days 20 hours ago (view)

    Jason Kipnis (like Brandon Morrow) was a post-2019 Article XX-B MLB free-agent who signed a 2020 minor league contract, so he gets a $100K retention bonus and an automatic June 1st player opt-out if he is not released by 12 PM (Eastern) on the 5th day prior to MLB Opening Day or added to an MLB 40-man roster or MLB 60-day IL by 12 PM (Eastern) on MLB Opening Day. 


  • Arizona Phil 4 days 21 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have signed post-2019 second-contract minor league FA catcher Jordan Procyshen to a 2020 minor league contract and he has been assigned to AA Tennessee.  


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 4 days 22 hours ago (view)

    Q could be subbed in for any of those too


  • crunch 5 days 18 min ago (view)

    darvish, lester, and mills could combine to give up 100 homers between the 3 of them.


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 5 days 37 min ago (view)

    I would have liked to give him a shot. I don't see much more out of a Chatwood and Alec Mills competition for the 5th spot.


  • crunch 5 days 3 hours ago (view)

    M's sign him 1/2m


  • crunch 5 days 3 hours ago (view)

    walker throwing for the M's today...hopefully they see something they like and can outbid the cubs.  it should be easy since the cubs seem to be hiring guys with camel cash and canadian tire money.


  • Cubster 5 days 4 hours ago (view)

    BA ranks Cubs system @22.

    LHP Brailyn Marquez (37), SS/OF Nico Hoerner (40), OF Brennen Davis (94)

    Skinny: Towering lefty Brailyn Marquez took as big of a jump as any pitcher in the minors and has drawn comparisons to both Aroldis Chapman and David Price. Nico Hoerner got a taste of the big leagues, too. The system still has a ways to go to return to prominence, however.


  • Charlie 5 days 5 hours ago (view)

    Probably an upgrade over Descalso, but not clearing that very low bar by very much.