Bond Bullet Snatches Tie from Jaws of Victory at Riverview

Alexander Guerra drilled a two-run HR and a single and Jonathan Sierra doubled, walked twice, and scored a run for the Cubs, and Francisco Medina belted a solo HR for the Giants black squad, as the two teams played to a 3-3 tie in Cactus League Extended Spring Training game action Monday morning on Field #5 on John Arguello Way at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ.   

With two outs and the scored tied in the bottom of the 9th inning, Jonathan Sierra sliced an opposite-field double into the LF corner, but then was thrown out at the plate by Giants LF Aaron Bond a batter later to end the game while attempting score on an Alexander Guerra ground single to left.   

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

1. Fernando Kelli, CF: 1-4 (1B, K, 5-3, 6-4 FC, R)
2. Reivaj Garcia, 2B: 2-4 (1B, 1-3, 1B, 4-3, PO)
3a. Luis Vazquez, SS: 0-2 (4-3, E-3, CS)
3b. Herson Perez, 3B: 0-2 (K, K)
4. Jonathan Sierra, RF: 1-2 (BB, BB, 4-3, 2B, R)
5. Alexander Guerra, C: 2-4 (HR, F-8, 5-3, 1B, R, 2 RBI)
6. Yovanny Cuevas, LF: 0-3 (K, P-2, F-7)
7. Eric Gonzalez, DH #1: 1-3 (K, L-8, 1B)
8. Carlos Pacheco, DH #2: 0-3 (K, K, K)
9. Fabian Pertuz, 3B-SS: 0-3 (K, K, F-7)
10. Fidel Mejia, 1B: 0-2 (F-7, 3-U, BB) 

1. Eury Ramos: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K, 1/2 GO/AO, 31 pitches (15 strikes)
2. Yovanny Cruz: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 1 GIDP, 2/2 GO/AO, 27 pitches (15 strikes) 
3. Nathan Sweeney: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 1 WP, 2/3 GO/AO, 28 pitches (13 strikes) 
4. Eugenio Palma: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 1 R (0 ER), 2 BB, 3 K, 0/3 GO/AO, 30 pitches (17 strikes)
5. Yan de la Cruz: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO, 14 pitches (9 strikes) 

3B Herson Perez: E-5 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely) 

Alexander Guerra: 0-4 CS. 1 PB 

Jonathan Sierra - thrown out 7-2 attempting to score fom 2nd base on ground single to LF 


WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's 


"Just because it isn't official doesn't mean it didn't happen" 


Another de la Cruz. Any relation?

BRADSBEARD: As far I know they are no relation. They don't look alike (Yan is 5'11 and Oscar is 6'4) and don't pitch alike (Oscar is a power-pitcher while Yan features an 84-86 MPH cutter and a slow curve), and while both are Dominican, they are from different cities in the DR.

BTW, Yan de la Cruz is 24 and will be 25 in August (so he's nearly two years older than Oscar) and has been in short-season ball for five years (originally signed by Houston in 2014, then was released in 2016 and signed by the Cubs as a minor league second-contract  FA). He has used up his max four years in the DSL so it's AZL or bust for Yan in 2018. 

That explains why we’ve never heard much about Yan!

The party line is that the SB Cubs, with a stacked young pitching staff and some potentially interesting bats, can make noise in 2018 and it will bode well for the parent club down the road. The problem I have with half of this theory is that all of these interesting bats are part of an infield which has made a brutal 20 errors in just 14 games. One of this group has a serious reputation of "good bat, needs to find a position" which doesn't seem to have followed him to Chicago, yet.  All of these players are South American, or second/third-day draftees. We're all rooting for diamond in the rough stories here but there is no DH on the North Side. So are these hidden gems, scouting mistakes or some of both?

Kind of different issues. Making noise in 2018, as far as competing for the post-season, is based heavily on health, and similar things. Also, Brendon Little will likely be wild, somewhat often. The offense is based around a few players through the Cubs Dominican pipeline. An 18-year old infielder will often bobble more chances than a 23 year old from a 4-year college. If the pipeline pitching over the next 5-6 weeks meets or exceeds, the Cubs can likely draft hitter-heavy, which should help long-term than another year of almost exclusive pitching.

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  • crunch 4 hours 59 min ago (view)

    at least...


  • Charlie 5 hours 53 min ago (view)

    Lester pitched 35 innings today.


  • crunch 8 hours 33 min ago (view)

    2019...cubs fan...being thankful heyward and chatwood are


  • Eric S 9 hours 19 min ago (view)

    Like having a 5-1 lead going into the ninth?


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 10 hours 15 min ago (view)

    With our vaunted late inning tandem of Tyler Chatwood and Rowan Wick!

    Who would have thought?


  • Jackstraw 10 hours 16 min ago (view)

    Cubs 1-10 with RISP in the series.  Left lots of ducks on the pond.  Could take some of the pressure off the pen.


  • Jackstraw 10 hours 17 min ago (view)

    You could hit your thumb with a hammer.  Or take a big bite of wayyyy too hot pizza.  Just sayin.


  • Eric S 10 hours 21 min ago (view)

    I’m a little surprised and confused that Bote wasn’t in the infield in the ninth? Wth - need that one out boot to complete my day


  • crunch 10 hours 22 min ago (view)

    cubs win!  about time.


  • Eric S 10 hours 31 min ago (view)

    Cubs have to scratch mightily to get two runs against the mighty second half buccos


  • crunch 11 hours 2 min ago (view)

    K, diving catch by happ for an out, HBP to load the bases, ground out


    PIT has loaded the bases 3 times in this game.


  • crunch 11 hours 11 min ago (view)

    ...and we're doing more 0 out, men on base stuff...

    2 on, 0 outs...up to 103 pitches and lester's day is done.

    bullpen time.  oh. boy.  neat.

    chatwood in.


  • crunch 11 hours 24 min ago (view)

    bryant has not forgotten how to hit homers.



  • crunch 11 hours 27 min ago (view)

    2 on, 0 out, and also gets out of that.

    btw, bryant has forgotten how to play 3rd base the past 2 innings...da hell...


  • crunch 11 hours 41 min ago (view)

    no one scores!  hell yeah.  phew.


  • crunch 11 hours 47 min ago (view)

    walking the pitcher to load the bases with 0 outs.

    this cubbery is thicker than the humidity.