Gloomy Skies Produce Sunny Result for Cubs at Riverview Park
LHP Jose Paulino tossed three innings of no-run/no-hit ball, Ho-Young Son belted an RBI triple, an RBI double, and a single, Tim Saunders reached base three times (a walk, an RBI single, and a triple) and scored two runs, Ricardo Marcano hammered a solo home run and an RBI single and scored twice, and Andrew Ely stroked an RBI double and a single, stole a base, and scored a run, leading the Cubs to a 6-3 victory over the Angels in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning on Field #6 at Mesa CubTown at Riverview Park.
In EXST Cubs roster news, Jordan Hankins has completed the Catcher Conversion Program course at the Under Armour Performance Center at Riverview Park and has been assigned to Hi-A Myrtle Beach. Hankins takes the place of C-1B Alberto Mineo, who moves down to Extended Spring Training from Myrtle Beach.
The left-handed swinging Hankins was drafted by the Cubs as an infielder in the 11th round of the 2013 MLB First-Year Player Draft (MLB Rule 4 Draft) out of Austin Peay University, and after playing 3B-2B with the AZL Cubs and Boise his first year of pro ball, he received initial catcher training at Instructs post-2013, and then again at Minor League Camp in 2014. But he was moved back to 3B once the 2014 minor league regular season started, and was good enough to be selected to the Midwest League All-Star game as a third-baseman while assigned to Kane County (he hit 322/361/461 in 50 MWL games). That earned Hankins a June promotion to Daytona (he and a struggling Jeimer Candelario changed places), but he was unable to find the same success at Daytona that he had found at KC (218/323/318 in 33 games at Daytona). He got a second opportunity to try catching at Instructs last fall, continuing the process into this season, first at Minor League Camp, and then at Extended Spring Training.
The 23-year old Hankins has been the best hitter on the 2015 EXST Cubs squad, putting up a 462/481/654 line (plus an eight-game hitting streak) with three doubles and a triple, four RBI, five runs scored, and only one strikeout in nine Cactus League EXST games (27 PA), while simultaneously learning the finer points of the receiving arts. (He also hit two home runs in EXST intrasquad games). Hankins likely projects as an "offense-first" left-handed hitting 3B-2B-1B-C bench guy at the higher levels (sort of a left-handed hitting version of Ben Carhart), but adding catcher to his "tool box" should make him more valuable as he moves up through the pipeline.
Also, 24-year old RHP Jose Rosario underwent an elbow UCL transplant ("Tommy John surgery") last month and will miss the 2015 season. Rosario is the second Cub minor leaguer to undergo TJS since the start of Spring Training (catcher Will Remillard was other one).
Born in New York City, Rosario was signed by the Cubs as a 17-year old international free-agent out of the Dominican Republic in April 2008. He was eligible to be an MLB Rule 55 minor league free-agent (so-called "six-year minor league free-agent") after the 2014 World Series, but he signed a 2015 minor league successor contract with the Cubs before being declared a free-agent. In 115 career minor league games 2008-14, Rosario has compiled a rather ugly 5.06 ERA and 1.56 WHIP, while allowing 489 hits (including 32 HR) and 192 walks in 437.2 IP, with 378 strikeouts.
Although he has plus-stuff, Rosario has been unable to harness it and has battled command issues throughout his career, He failed to reach AA in seven minor league seasons, and yet the Cubs saw enough in him to offer him a 2015 contract rather than allowing him to walk away as a free-agent. But he continued to struggle with his control at Minor League Camp this season, before being shut-down with a sore elbow the last week of Spring Training. Rosario is eligible to be a minor league 6YFA again post-2015, but since the TJS rehab process takes at least a year, I would not be surprised if he signs another minor league successor contract for 2016 so that he can continue his rehab with the same training staff.
It wasn't a Cactus League EXST game, but the Cubs did play an EXST intrasquad game on Field #5 yesterday (Thursday). 29-year old veteran MLB and ex-Red Sox RHRP Daniel Bard threw an inning in the game, and while he continues to have difficulty throwing strikes (24 pitches - only 9 strikes, with one walk and two WP in the one IP), he did manage to retire the side without allowing a hit or a run. Known as a hard-throwing late-inning reliever, Bard didn't show it yesterday. His fastball consistently sat at 91-92 MPH, and touched 93 only once.
Cubs Minor League Infield Coordinator Jose Flores is at Extended Spring Training this week, working with the young Cub infielders on the finer points of infield play. (He also throws a mean BP).
Here is the abridged box score from today's Cactus League EXST game (Cubs players only), followed by the box score from yesterday's EXST Cubs intrasquad game.
1. Kevonte Mitchell, CF: 0-3 (BB, 5-3, F-7, 4-3, SB)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIFTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
2. Alberto Mineo, 1B: 0-5 (P-4, L-4, K, K, 4-3)
3. Carlos Sepulveda, 2B: 1-3 (BB, 6-3, 1B, K, 2 SB)
4. Eloy Jimenez, RF: 1-4 (P-4, F-8, K, 1B)
5a. Tyler Alamo, C: 0-3 (F-9, 6-3, F-8)
5b. Tyler Pearson, C: 1-1 (2B, R)
6. Andrew Ely, 3B: 2-4 (4-3, 1B, P-4, 2B, R, RBI, SB)
7. Ricardo Marcano, LF: 2-4 (4-3, 1B, HR, 3-U, 2 R, 2 RBI)
8. Tim Saunders, DH #1: 2-3 (BB, 1B, 3B, F-9, 2 R, RBI, CS)
9. Ho-Young Son, SS: 3-3 (3B, 1B, 2B, 2 RBI, CS)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
10. Varonex Cuevas, DH #2: 0-3 (4-3, K, K)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
1. Jose Paulino: 3.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 4/4 GO/FO, 43 pitches (27 strikes)
2. Scott Frazier: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 18 pitches (7 strikes)
3. John Michael Knighton:1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GO/FO, 9 pitches (5 strikes)
4. Dillon Maples: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 15 pitches (9 strikes)
5. Andin Diaz: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 2/0 GO/FO, 9 pitches (6 strikes)
6. Daniel Lewis: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 2 R (1 ER), 4 BB, 1 K, 2 GIDP, 2/1 GO/FO, 44 pitches (19 strikes)
CUBS ERRORS: 2
1. 3B Andrew Ely - E-5 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely)
2. 1B Alberto Mineo - E-3 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
1. Tyler Alamo: 1-2 CS
2. Tyler Pearson: 1 PB
WEATHER: Mostly cloudy and very breezy with temperatures in the 70's
THURSDAY (5-7-2015) - INTRASQUAD GAME ON FIELD #5
Adonis Paula belted a solo HR and Kevin Encarnacion drilled a double and an RBI single.
The game was called after 6-1/2 innings.
CUBS SQUAD "B" LINEUP:
1. Roberto Caro, CF:1-2 (4-3, 1B, BB, R, SB)
2. Andrew Ely, 2B: 0-1 (F-9, BB, BB, R, RBI)
3. Kevin Encarnacion, RF: 2-3 (2B, 1B, 4-3 DP, RBI, CS)
4. Adonis Paula, 3B: 1-3 (K, HR, 6-3, R, RBI)
5. Yohan Matos, C: 0-3 (K, F-9, K)
6. Ricardo Marcano, LF: 0-3 (6-3, 6-3, K)
7. Carlos Jimenez, DH: 1-3 (F-9, 1B, F-8, PO)
8. Miguel Rico, 1B; 0-2 (F-8, BB, F-8, R)
9. Andruw Monasterio, SS: 1-3 (F-8, 2B, F-9, R)
CUBS SQUAD "A" LINEUP:
1. Kevonte Mitchell, CF: 1-2 (2B, 4-3, R)
2. Frandy de la Rosa, DH #1: 1-2 (1B, 4-3, RBI, CS)
3. Carlos Sepulveda, 2B: 1-1 (BB, 2B, 2 SB)
4. Eloy Jimenez, LF: 0-2 (4-3, F-8)
5. Tyler Alamo, 1B-DH: 0-2 (6-3, 5-3)
6. Jose Paniagua, DH #2: 0-2 (F-9, K)
7. Tyler Pearson, C: 1-2 (1B, K)
8. Ho-Young Son, SS: 0-2 (K, L-9)
9a. Tim Saunders, DH #3: 0-1 (F-9)
9b. Wladimir Galindo, 3B: NO AB
10. Roney Alcala, DH-1B: 0-1 (BB, 5-3)
11. Robert Garcia, DH #5: 0-1 (4-3)
12. Varonex Cuevas, 3B-DH: 0-1 (6-2 FC)
13. Jenner Emeterio, RF: 0-1 (K)
CUBS SQUAD "B" PITCHERS:
1. Mark Malave: 2.0 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 2/2 GO/FO, 41 pitches (22 strikes)
2. Daniel Bard: 1.0 IP, 0H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 2 WP, 2/0 GO/FO, 24 pitches (9 strikes)
3. Santiago Rodriguez: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 3/1 GO/FO, 23 pitches (14 strikes)
4. Yomar Morel: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 9 pitches (6 strikes)
CUBS SQUAD "A" PITCHERS:
1. Adbert Alzolay: 3.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 BALK, 2/4 GO/FO, 45 pitches (28 strikes)
2. Enrique de los Rios: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 3 R (3 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, 1 HR, 1 PO, 1 GIDP, 2/1 GO/FO, 34 pitches (14 strikes)
3. Sam Wilson: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GO/FO, 13 pitches (10 strikes)
4. Greyfer Eregua: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 0/3 GO/FO, 10 pitches (6 strikes)
CUBS SQUAD "B" ERRORS: NONE
CUBS SQUAD "A" ERRORS: 1
P Adbert Alzolay - E-1 (errant pick-off attempt at 1st base allowed runner to advance to 2nd and a runner to score from 3rd)
CUBS SQUAD "B" CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Yohan Matos: 1-4 CS
CUBS SQUAD "A: CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Tyler Pearson: 1-2 CS
Cubster 3 hours 21 min ago (view)
and they are including amusement tax, healthcare costs (Doc Adams doesn't come cheap!), social security and political donations to the City and the Governor of Nebraska.
bradsbeard 3 hours 46 min ago (view)
It all depends what you count as "payroll." If you include the $11M in Lester and Descalso's buyouts plus the $3M sent in the Darvish trade you get to somewhere like $145M. If you include the $15M in estimated share of player benefits, you get to $160M. I think that last year, including player benefits, they were slated to be up around $205M for MLB payroll before the pandemic.
crunch 13 hours 30 min ago (view)
not sure, but i think it's around 130-135m right now even with bryant/baez/contreras still on board...including the 3m to set darvish free and other random $$ expenses on the roster.
tack on another 3-4m for happ when that gets settled....plus other odds/ends that have a chance to make the roster (s.miller, a.morgan, j.holder, etc) and other pre-arbitration guys...
cubs still need someone to back up contreras (if he sticks around, which i wouldn't be surprised to see him stick around)...not sure if taylor gushue is gonna be that guy and m.amaya is too young.
George Altman 14 hours 19 min ago (view)
Seriously, what's the 2021 payroll number? Currently at approximately $165M and after they trade Bryant, Baez, & Contreras - $130M. Is that it, $135-140M.
crunch 14 hours 24 min ago (view)
Q to the angels...supposedly 1/8m
crunch 23 hours 19 min ago (view)
pete ricketts (the governor of Nebraska ricketts) is a key part of an anti-gambling Nebraska group called "Gambling With The Good Life" that actively lobbied their open legislature...including a speech by pete...to keep gambling illegal in Nebraska.
he last spoke for the group to the state government in-session 3 months ago.
...it's also worth mentioning all of this is separate from the Draft Kings/Wrigley Field deal that flew under the radar toward the end of the season that will put a sportsbook directly in wrigley field, itself.
Charlie 23 hours 54 min ago (view)
Of all the things, why does this most make me want to punch
Cubster 1 day 5 hours ago (view)
I thought the Cubs had lost a rising star in Porter, seems the just got lucky with him leaving the organization.
crunch 1 day 12 hours ago (view)
jared porter...damn dude...mets gm, ex cubs director of scouting...
crunch 1 day 16 hours ago (view)
cubs freeing up that chatwood + lester loot sure did help...wait...sigh.
Cubster 1 day 16 hours ago (view)
Plus Chatwood signing w Bluejays is done.
crunch 1 day 18 hours ago (view)
...and done. 1 year deal with a mutual option.
Cubster 1 day 19 hours ago (view)
Dolorous in discussions with the Washington Schwarbs.
crunch 1 day 19 hours ago (view)
that's where i'd put my money. he gave up an alarming amount of HR last season, giving pause. still, he's shown he's better than a 5 slot guy...
Cubster 1 day 19 hours ago (view)
God knows, the pitching staff needs more Garlick but the offense needs to ward off those strikeout demons.