The Bryan Hudson Ground Ball Machine Chews Up A's at Extended Spring Training

LHSP Bryan Hudson hurled six innings of two-hit shutout ball with six strikeouts, no walks, and a 10/0 GO/AO, Michael Cruz drilled a triple and two singles and scored two runs, Andruw Monasterio doubled twice and scored a run, and Jacob Hannemann (on AA Tennessee 7-day DL - knee injury) reached base four times (two singles and two walks), as the Cubs edged the Athletics 3-2 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training Opening Day game action this morning on Field #6 at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ. 

The game was called after eight innings of play. 

The 6'8 Hudson (Cubs 2015 3rd round draft pick - Alton HS - Alton, IL) was an absolute ground-ball machine, mixing an 87-89 MPH sinker, a plus-curve, and an occasional change-up to keep the A's hitters off-balance and constantly beating pitches into the ground. He also threw 70% strikes and averaged only 11.5 pitches-per-inning. Hudson's outing was simply one of the best performances by a starting pitcher in a Cactus League Extended Spring Training game I have ever witnessed (and I have seen many good ones over the last 40 years). There were three or four scouts from other MLB clubs in attendance at the game watching Hudson work, and I would think they probably came away favorably impressed as well. 

Prior to the game, the six newly-arrived pitchers from the Cubs Dominican Academy (LHP Faustino Carrera, RHP Hector Garcia, RHP Fauris Guerrero, LHP Brailyn Marquez, RHP Yunior Perez, and RHP Eury Ramos) threw "live" BP on Field #5. Each pitcher threw one inning (20 pitches). All six were at post-2016 AZ Instructs, so they have been at the Cubs Mesa facility before. Two other pitchers who attended post-2016 AZ Instructs (RHP Alfredo Colorado and Carlos Ocampo) were supposedly going to be at Extended Spring Training, too, but both will be remaining at the Cubs Dominican Academy.  

Also, Eloy Jimenez (on Myrtle Beach 7-day DL - right shoulder bruise) began taking BP this morning, as he gets himself into playing shape prior to playing in EXST games and (eventually) re-joining the Myrtle Beach Pelicans. However, he still is not throwing. Prior to today, Eloy had been participating in baserunning and outfield drills (without throwing), and he was "tracking" pitches in BP but not taking swings. So at least now he is able to swing the bat. Because the DH is used in the Carolina League, it's possible that Eloy could move-up to Myrtle Beach and be the DH even if he is unable to throw, although the Cubs will probably want him to complete the Rehab Throwing Program before he departs.

Here is the abridged box score from the game (Cubs players only): 

CUBS LINEUP:
1. Jacob Hannemann, DH #1: 2-2 (BB, 1B, BB, 1B) 
2. Zach Davis, CF: 0-2 (BB, BB, K, K)
3. Kevin Zamudio, 1B: 0-4 (K, K, 5-3, F-9)
4. Michael Cruz, C: 3-4 (3-U, 3B, 1B, 1B, 2 R)
5. Andruw Monasterio, SS: 2-4 (K, 2B, 2B+E9, P-3, R) 
6. Brandon Cummins, RF: 0-2 (4-3, K, F-8 SF, RBI)
7. Jose A. Gonzalez, LF: 0-3 (K, F-7, 6-3)
8. Luis Diaz, 2B: 1-3 (F-7, 4-3, 3B)
9. Edgar Rondon, 3B: 0-3 (3-U, 1-3, K)
10. Carlos Diaz, DH #2: 0-1 (K, BB, BB)

CUBS PITCHERS
1. Bryan Hudson: 6.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K, 2 GIDP, 10/0 GO/AO, 69 pitches (48 strikes) 
2. Mark Malave: 2.0 IP, 5 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 2/3 GO/AO, 39 pitches (23 strikes)

CUBS ERRORS: 2
1. 3B Edgar Rondon: E-5 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely)
2. 3B Edgar Rondon: E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)

ATTENDANCE: 12 

WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 80's 

Comments

Great to see Hudson throwing strikes after his struggles last year. Could be another big SP prospect moving up the chain soon.

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  • Mike Wellman 5 min 17 sec ago (view)

    The Hey, Hoe, Hen alignment...

     

  • crunch 28 min 43 sec ago (view)

    zobrist / cast / bryant / schwarb / contreras / caratini / heyward / hoe / hendricks

    this lineup seems to be a popular thing.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 4 hours 3 min ago (view)

    Lots of games where they failed to add on.

    Lots of games Strop has single handedly blown, too.

     

  • Charlie 4 hours 34 min ago (view)

    There are so many candidates. The early season losing streak comes painfully to mind.

     

  • Charlie 4 hours 34 min ago (view)

    JHey's swing looks like it slipped into groundout mode. That Nico lineout was heartbreaking. :(

     

  • Charlie 4 hours 35 min ago (view)

    Threw Vanmeter a curve and changeup that both looked great on TV, though Vanmeter didn't offer.

     

  • Mike Wellman 6 hours 19 min ago (view)

    First thing I'll point to, depending on the final order of finish, is the fact that, for the second year in a row we took the lead off of Hader in the 8th inning of a key late-season game @ Milwaukee & couldn't keep it. The second thing will be the game we led 5-0 after 7 & managed to lose. Nats next face Marlins. Cards come to town licking their chops/beaks to finish us off...

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 9 hours 26 min ago (view)

    They’re toast. Can’t finish games, can’t finish series, and it looks very much like they won’t finish this season.

     

  • Hagsag 10 hours 42 min ago (view)

    The Cubbies are in a tough situation. If they make the playoffs, they will have earned it!. Enjoy the ride folks.

     

  • Eric S 17 hours 9 min ago (view)

    Reds win season series 11-8 - possibly the first thing you point to should the Cubs miss the post season

     

  • Eric S 17 hours 16 min ago (view)

    Long looking swing for JHey ... and Nico - oof

     

  • Eric S 17 hours 17 min ago (view)

    Heard Len say Descalso’s name and about had a heart attack. Then heard him say “pinch runner” and settled down a bit

     

  • Charlie 17 hours 21 min ago (view)

    Contreras's receiving didn't do Norwood any favors in that Vanmeter at-bat. And Norwood needed some favors.

     

  • Eric S 17 hours 26 min ago (view)

    Gotta do better than three hits in nine innings in a start by Mahle - this one is on the bats

     

  • crunch 17 hours 31 min ago (view)

    4th pitcher of the inning coming in...neat

     

  • crunch 17 hours 36 min ago (view)

    ugg