Pierce Johnson Sharp at Sloan Park

RHSP Pierce Johnson (on AAA Iowa 7-day DL since May 5th retro to 5/3 with a lat strain) hurled three innings (30 pitches - 83% strikes) of one-hit shutout ball with five strikeouts, Jose Paniagua belted an RBI double and two singles and scored a run, and Marcus Mastrobuoni hammered a triple and a single and scored two runs, leading the Cubs to a 7-2 victory over the Rockies at Sloan Park, and LHSP Manny Rondon (acquired from LAA last July for C Rafael Lopez) tossed four innings of one-hit shutout ball with ten strikeouts, Chris Pieters (ex-LHP) ripped two two-run doubles (four RBI total), and Andruw Monasterio drilled an RBI single, walked twice, and scored two runs, helping the Cubs defeat the Rockies 5-2 on Field #1 at the Riverview Park Baseball Complex, in Cactus League Extended Spring Training split-squad doubleheader action this morning in Mesa, AZ. 

Alex Castellanos (ex-LAD) slugged a solo HR for the Rockies at Sloan Park. 

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

SLOAN PARK 

CUBS SQUAD "A" LINEUP:
1. Robert Garcia, CF: 0-5 (K, K, 3-U, F-9, K)
2. Yeiler Peguero, 2B: 0-4 (5-3, L-6, K, F-8)
3. Kevonte Mitchell, RF: 1-3 (6-3, BB, 1B, K, R, SB)
4. Jose Paniagua, 1B: 3-4 (6-3, 1B, 2B, 1B, R, RBI)
5. Isaac Paredes, SS: 0-3 (6-3, F-9, 6-3, BB, R)
6. Marcus Mastrobuoni, DH #1: 2-4 (1-3, 5-4-3 DP, 3B, 1B, 2 R)
7. Alberto Mineo, C-DH: 0-1 (3-1, BB, F-8 SF, BB, RBI, PO)
8. Roberto Caro, LF: 1-3 (BB, 1B, 3-U, K, 2 R, SB)
9. Vimael Machin, 3B: 0-1 (BB, L-7 SF, BB, K, RBI)
10. Eric Gonzalez, DH-C: 1-3 (1B, 6-3, 6-4 FC, BB, RBI)

CUBS SQUAD "A" PITCHERS
1. Pierce Johnson: 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 5 K, 3/1 GO/AO, 30 pitches (25 strikes) 
2. Luis Aquino: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 3/1 GO/AO, 29 pitches (19 strikes) 
3. Jared Cheek: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 3 K, 1/2 GO/AO, 33 pitches (20 strikes)
4. Tyler Peitzmeier: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 0/1 GO/AO, 12 pitches (9 strikes) 
5. Mark Malave: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GO/AO, 12 pitches (8 strikes) 

CUBS SQUAD "A" ERRORS: NONE 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

RIVERVIEW PARK BASEBALL COMPLEX - FIELD #1

CUBS SQUAD "B" LINEUP:
1. D. J. Wilson, CF: 1-3 (HBP, P-6, 2B, L-6, 2 R)
2. Andruw Monasterio, SS: 1-1 (BB, 1B, BB, 2 R, RBI, CS)
3. Chris Pieters, DH-1B: 2-3 (2B, K, 2B, 4 RBI, CS)
4. Waldimir Galindo, 3B: 1-3 (4-3, 1B, K)
5. Alex Bautista, DH #2: 0-2 (6-3, BB, F-9)
6a. Gustavo Polanco, C-DH: 0-2 (P-3, 6-3 DP)
6b. Tyler Payne, PH: 0-1 (F-8)
7. Kevin Zamudio, 1B-C: 1-3 (K, 1B, 1-3)
8. Yohan Matos, LF: 1-3 (K, 1B, 6-3)
9. Edgar Rondon, 2B: 0-2 (E-4, 4-6-3 DP, BB, R, PO)
10. Luis Ayala, RF: 0-3 (3-U, 1-3, K)

CUBS SQUAD "B" PITCHERS
1. Manny Rondon: 4.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 10 K, 2/0 GO/AO, 60 pitches (41 strikes) 
2. Enrique de los Rios: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 3/3 GO/AO, 22 pitches (15 strikes) 
3. M. T. Minacci: 1.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 2/3 GO/AO, 16 pitches (10 strikes)
4. John Michael Knighton: 1.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 2/2 GO/AO, 16 pitches (9 strikes)

CUBS SQUAD "B" ERRORS: NONE 

CUBS SQUAD "B" CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Gustavo Polanco: 0-1 CS 

CUBS SQUAD "B" BASERUNNING ADVENTURES
Chris Pieters - thrown out 8-4-5 attempting to stretch double into triple 

ATTENDANCE: 29 (combined both games - some spectators went back & forth between the two venues) 

WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's 

Comments

Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

ERIC S: Best outing I've ever seen from Manny Rondon, and I've seen most of his outings since the Cubs got him from the Angels. 

M. Rondon is competing with six others (Dylan Cease, Bryan Hudson, Jose Paulino, Pedro Silverio, Jesus Castillo, and Erling Moreno) for a starting slot at Eugene, and (as you can probably tell from the EXST box scores)  the competition has gotten fierce over the last couple of weeks, With the exception of Moreno, the Eugene SP candidates have upped their game lately, and M. Rondon's outing yesterday was especially impressive/dominating. 

It will be interestiing to see how the seven perform over the next ten days. 

But whatever happens, Eugene should have one helluva starting rotation.  

AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC. 

PHIL: Any movement on P. Johnsons pitches? What was his "out" pitch? I know he was working on a 4th pitch, so wondering what he is looking like these days. Thanks.

E-MAN: Pierce Johnsion was mixing a 92-94 MPH fastball with a plus-change-up AND curve, and he threw strike-after-strike-after-strike with all three of his pitches. I believe that was the best command and pitch-efficiency I've ever seen from Johnson, who often pitches from behind in the count and issues too many walks.  

Of course now he has to avoid a recurrence of the lat strain (whch he has had previously in his career) as well as all of the other miscellaneous physical problems he's had over the last three years (hamstring, quad, back, etc).  

BUT (big but) if he can stay healthy, Johnson is a legit MLB pitching prospect, either as a MOR starter, or possibly as a reliever (if he has stamina or durability issues). 

Recent comments

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  • Dolorous Jon Lester 4 hours 2 min ago (view)

    I agree with all of this. I think KB is traded for a SP. I guess here is my guess at the pitchers:

    Darvish

    Hendricks

    Trade Acquisition 

    Cheap FA

    Mills/ Alzolay 

    Bullpen: Mills/ Alzolay, Underwood, Adam, Tepera, Wick, Kimbrel, Ryan, Wieck (Alzolay if he loses the 5th spot battle with Mills is still starter number 6, and likely being groomed to join the rotation either later in the year or 2022)

     

  • Charlie 15 hours 42 min ago (view)

    Frazier beat him on an inside corner two-seamer (albeit belt high), but the Hayes homer came on an 0-2 meatball. Not very professorial.

     

  • crunch 15 hours 49 min ago (view)

    hendricks starts the game giving up back to back homers.  wtf...

     

  • crunch 18 hours 18 min ago (view)

    happ / rizzo / contreras / schwarber(DH) / maybin(LF) / heyward / baez / kipnis / bote

     

  • George Altman 19 hours 34 min ago (view)

    Let's hope so. It would be great next year to NOT have to 'piece together a bullpen'.

     

  • Arizona Phil 19 hours 55 min ago (view)

    DJL: I think that if Lester, Chatwood, Quintana, Jeffress, and Chafin leave via free-agency and do not return or are not replaced by at least one veteran MLB FA SP, the default Cubs 2021 Opening Day pitching staff will be Darvish, Hendricks, Mills (out of options), Alzolay (could be out of options - TBD), and either Rea, T. Miller, Steele, Abbott, Marquez, or D.

     

  • Arizona Phil 20 hours 49 min ago (view)

    I understand that any team can win a three-game series, but if I'm a division winner I'd want to be the #3 seed rather than the #2 seed in both the A. L. and the N. L., because I would rather face the worst second place team (Houston in the A. L. and probably Miami or Philadelphia in N. L.) than the best wild card team (Cleveland in the A. L. and probably Cincinnati or Milwaukee in the N.L.).  

     

  • Hagsag 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    Maybe, if he makes the roster!

     

  • Charlie 1 day 10 hours ago (view)

    Jose Martinez is going to hit some big post season homerun, isn't he?

     

  • Cubster 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    Is the Chafin experiment over yet?

     

  • crunch 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    well that sucked.

    even with the loss the cubs officially clinched a playoff slot tonight, though.

     

  • crunch 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    oh, it's totally the hitters unless the coach is forcing guys into trying ill advised changes...which is doubtful to the point of obsurdity for this many slumping hitters.

    it's just that a near team-wide hitting outage with no one getting "fixed" isn't a good look for a hitting coach.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    How many hitting coaches would that be over the past five years?

    At a certain point maybe it's just the hitters? I love the current group but we've been burning through hitting coaches recently

     

  • crunch 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    anthony iapoce might want to start updating his resume...

    i'm not saying it's his fault, but it doesn't seem like much is going right with the bats and it's getting worse over time.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    I look at the 8 man pen for next year and would assume 6 RHP 2 LHP. The LHP would currently be two of Ryan, Wieck, and Steele (and I guess Osich but I suspect he's non-tendered).

    The 6 RHP would be from Kimbrel, Wick, Tepera, Adam, Underwood, Alzolay, Winkler, Rea (and potentially others). I feel like they're only keeping one of Tepera/ Winkler for final arb year. Tough to say which is better value at this point.

     

  • crunch 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    im impressed tepera has "only" given up 2hr in 19.2ip, but i wouldn't hold out on that holding up.  also, his control is sketchy as ever...

    he's got promising stuff, but at age 33 (few weeks from now) what more does he have to learn/show?

    it would probably cost the cubs 1.5m or so to keep him around (900K this year).  they liked something about him to pick him up, but who knows where that's at now...