Cubs Bore-nstein A's to Tears with Grand Slam and One-Hitter at Fitch Park
SP Justin Steele and five relievers combined to hurl a one-hit shutout, Robel Garcia belted a solo HR and an RBI single, Eddy Julio Martinez drilled two RBI singles, walked, and scored, and Jhonny Bethencourt hammered a single and a double, stole a base, and scored two runs, as the Tennessee Smokies (Chicago Cubs AA affiliate) blanked the Midland RockHounds (Oakland Athletics AA afffiliate) 8-0 on Field #3, and Zach Borenstein walloped a monster grand slam HR over the CF batter's eye, Zack Short ripped a solo HR and an RBI single and scored two runs, Fernando Arcia singled twice, walked, stole a base, and drove-in a run, and SP Duncan Robinson hurled 4.2 IP of one-run ball (he gave up his only run on a sac fly on his 71st and final pitch), propelling the Iowa Cubs (AAA affiliate of the Cubs) to a 7-1 victory over the Las Vegas Aviators (AAA affiliate of the A's) on Field #4, in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training game action Saturday afternoon at the Lew Wolff Training Complex at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ.
Of the ten Cubs minor league pitchers who threw in the games at Fitch Park on Saturday, only two (Duncan Robinson and George Kontos) are actually assigned to the AAA Iowa squad at Minor League Camp. The other eight who threw (including two who pitched in the AAA game) are assigned to the AA Tennessee squad.
Speaking of the AA Tennessee pitching staff, with Bailey Clark throwing three innings for Tennessee in Friday's intrasquad game at Riverview and Ian Clarkin and Tyson Miller working out of the Smokies bullpen Saturday at Fitch Park (each threw only 19 pitches), it would appear that the Cubs may be prepping Clark to be a SP and Clarkin and T. Miller to be bullpen guys at Tennessee (which is the exact opposite of how things looked just a week ago).
Here are the abridged box scores from Saturday's games (Cubs players only):
1a. Roberto Caro, LF: 1-3 (1B, K, FC, SB, CS)
1b. Jared Young, LF: 1-1 (BB, 1B, R)
2. Eddy Julio Martinez, RF: 2-4 (F-8, 1B, 1B, BB, P-6, R, 2 RBI)
3. Nico Hoerner, SS-DH: 0-3 (BB, 2-3, 4-3, F-9 SF, E-9, RBI)
4. Robel Garcia, 3B: 2-4 (6-3 DP, HR, 6-3, 1B, L-3 DP, R, 2 RBI)
5a. Carlos Sepulveda, 2B: 0-3 (5-3, E-3, L-6)
5b. P. J. Higgins, 2B: 1-1 (1B, RBI)
6. Tyler Alamo, 1B: 2-3 (BB, 4-6-3 DP, 1B, 2B, R)
7. Jhonny Pereda, C-DH: 0-4 (6-4-3 DP, 6-3, 5-4 FC, K)
8. Luis Ayala, CF: 2-4 (4-3, 1B, F-9, 1B, R, RBI)
9. Jhonny Bethencourt, DH-SS: 2-4 (1B, 4-3, 2B, K, 2 R, SB)
10. Cam Balego, DH-C: 1-2 (1B, F-8, R, RBI)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TWO TIMES THRU BATTING ORDER
1. Justin Steele: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 3/1 GO/AO, 28 pitches (17 strikes)
2. Ian Clarkin: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 2/1 GO/AO, 19 pitches (9 strikes)
3. Tyson Miller: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 3/1 GO/AO, 19 pitches (14 strikes)
4. Oscar de la Cruz: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 27 pitches (19 strikes)
5. Tyler Peyton: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1/1 GO/AO, 15 pitches (8 strikes)
6. Scott Effross: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 3/0 GO/AO, 10 pitches (7 strikes)
TENNESSEE ERRORS: NONE
TENNESSEE CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Cam Balego: 0-1 CS
1a. Donnie Dewees, CF: 0-3 (F-7, F-8, F-9)
1b. Connor Myers, CF: 1-1 (3B, R)
2. Fernando Arcia, DH #1: 2-3 (4-3, 1B, BB, 1B, RBI, SB)
3. Jacob Hannemann, RF-CF: 0-4 (F-8, K, K, K)
4a. Phillip Evans, 3B-DH: 1-3 (2B, 5-3, K, R)
4b. Raymond Pena, PH: 1-1 (1B)
5. Jim Adduci, 1B: 1-4 (1B, F-9, L-4, F-7, R)
6. Charcer Burks, LF: 1-3 (HBP, 1B, K, K, R, PO)
7a. Zach Short, SS: 2-3 (1B, P-3, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI)
7b. Luis Diaz, 3B: 0-1 (6-3)
8a. Zack Borenstein, DH #2: 1-3 (HR, K, 4-3, R, 4 RBI)
8b. Aramis Ademan, SS: NO AB
9a. Ian Rice, C: 0-2 (K, F-8)
9b. Tyler Payne, C: 1-1 (1B)
10. Yeiler Peguero, 2B: 3-3 (1B, 1B, 1B, 2 SB, CS)
1. Duncan Robinson: 4.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 5 K, 6/3 GO/AO, 71 pitches (47 strikes)
2. George Kontos: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 0 K, 1 HR, 2/2 GO/AO, 18 pitches (13 strikes)
3. Zach Hedges: 1.2 IP, 0 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 0 K, 3/2 GO/AO, 29 pitches (15 strikes)
4. Jordan Minch: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 3/0 GO/AO, 29 pitches (17 strikes)
IOWA ERRORS: 1
SS Zach Short: E-6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
Tyler Payne thrown out 8-5 attempting to advance from 1st to 3rd on single to CF
WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 70's
"Just because it isn't official doesn't mean it didn't happen"
Arizona Phil 15 min 11 sec ago (view)
CUBSTER: Manuel Rodriguez was one of about two dozen players signed by the Cubs out of Mexico 2015-17 and he was one of the most-advanced (he spent three seasons in the Mexican League before signing with the Cubs).
Arizona Phil 54 min 33 sec ago (view)
KKvG: The Cubs are doing their Strength & Conditioning Camp October-Thanksgiving and will have Winter Instructs in January.
KingKongvsGodzilla 1 hour 14 min ago (view)
Cool post, thanks. To go completely off topic - are Fall instructs happening this year? Did they already happen?
Cubster 1 hour 25 min ago (view)
Grandal leaves Brewers for WSox, 4/73 for a 31 yr old switch hitting catcher that hit .246 with decent on base and power.
crunch 2 hours 18 min ago (view)
mekkes plays out like d.maples, but mekkes doesn't throw as hard, mostly just throws his fastball, and it has great deception. both of them have no predictable command and control.
given that mekkes is only expected to be a pen arm at best anyway, someone might very well snag him even if they end up sending him back before the season.
if we still were in an era where you could have "specialist" relievers rather than this new era of innings-guys, he would probably be on the cubs roster given that righties are generally lost against him.
cubbies.4ever 23 hours 45 min ago (view)
Why no Dakota Meekes? Somebody is gonna take him.
Cubster 1 day 15 min ago (view)
Per S Sharma: "Cubs have added C Miguel Amaya, RHP Tyson Miller, RHP Manuel Rodriguez and INF Zack Short to the 40-man roster, which now stands at 36."
...Manny Rodriguez must be a bit of a surprise.
erich081 1 day 7 hours ago (view)
Interesting, thanks AZ Phil.
Arizona Phil 1 day 7 hours ago (view)
First.Pitch.120: Without citing the source, I can say that other than Miguel Amaya, no Cub eligible for selection in the 2019 Rule 5 Draft is more-likely to be selected (if left unprotected) than P. J. Higgins, and if Higgins is selected, the Cubs will almost certainly not get him back.
First.Pitch.120 1 day 10 hours ago (view)
AZ PHIL: can you tell us a bit more about the "likely" ranking for PJ Higgins? I haven't had a chance to see him IRL. His stat sheet looks ok but not necessarily above some others. Is it a case of the "useful AAA catcher who can also do other things while not destroying you with the bat"?
JustSayin' 5 days 8 hours ago (view)
I hear you but welcome to the world of Theo. The team is always a step or two away from the World Series in his mind, whether that is true or not. Therefore, the thing to do on the margin is to trade top prospects or younger guys on the roster for that missing puzzle piece, not build for the future. I had a front-row seat for this as a Red Sox fan. If Pedro Martinez doesn't insist the Red Sox sign David Ortiz for table scraps and Chris Bryant isn't the no-brainer second pick in the draft, we'd all be wondering what happened to that Theo guy who was in the Red S
Cubster 5 days 9 hours ago (view)
Shogo Akiyama is a lefty bat, career BA at.301 w/ Seibu Lions. Recent OBPs: .419, .385, .398, .403 and .392. HR 20-15 in last 3 seasons Stolen bases, 12 in 2019, 18 in best season (2016). Defense supposedly plus-plus, 7-10 assists (10 in 2016). Clearly a leadoff hitter.
crunch 6 days 2 hours ago (view)
christian yelich committed internet homicide on yu darvish...
Charlie 6 days 6 hours ago (view)
Little in the offseason could make me happier than the Cubs finding ways to retain the good MLB players who came up with them while remaining competitive. This Javy extension talk makes me much happier as a fan than the Bryant and Contreras trade talk.
crunch 6 days 6 hours ago (view)
"Javy Baez. The two-time All-Star shortstop and 2018 MVP runner-up already has begun negotiations on a potential long-term extension with the Cubs, according to sources."
also, some talk of being linked to shogo akiyama (CF, Japan, 32yo in April)
crunch 1 week 2 hours ago (view)
j.odorizzi accepted his qualifying offer (17.8m) from MIN...so did j.abreu (CWS)....everyone else is gonna play the FA market.
w.smith (SF) immediately signed with the braves for 3/39 (13m team option/1m buyout on the backend). braves lose a 2nd round pick...which they'll probably get back when someone signs j.donaldson.