Brooks Looking Good at Diablo
Sam McDonnell drilled two RBI singles including one that drove-in the tying run, as the Angels rallied for two runs in the bottom of the 9th to upend the Cubs 5-4 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training action this morning at Tempe Diablo Stadium in Tempe, AZ.
Rafael Mejia belted a two-run double and a single, scored a run, and knocked-in a third run with a 6-3 GO and Alberto Mineo tripled, walked twice, and scored a run for the Cubs in a losing cause.
RHSP Aaron Brooks (on Cubs MLB 15-day DL since Spring Training with a hip contusion) made a rehab start for the Cubs and tossed three shutout innings (32 pitches), allowing a lead-off single in the bottom of the 1st (erased on a CS) before easily retiring the next eight in a row (3-U, K, K, L-8, P-3, 4-3, 1-3, K). A healthy Brooks (and hopefully a healthy Pierce Johnson and a healthy Dallas Beeler) should help upgrade the Iowa starting rotation once the trio have completed their rehab work at EXST within the next week or two.
LHRP Jack Leathersich (July 2015 TJS) continued his EXST game rehab work, following Brooks to the hill and hurling a scoreless inning (1B, K, F-7, 6-3). The ex-NYM lefthander who was claimed by the Cubs off waivers last November looked a lot better today than he did in his first rehab outing last week, needing 15 pitches (11 strikes) to record three outs. (He struggled to throw strikes and could not complete his assigned inning in his previous outing). The Cubs are hoping Leathersich can rehab successfully from the TJS and offer some lefty relief help down the stretch drive, and today's outing certainly provides some reason for optimism.
6'8 LHP Bryan Hudson (Cubs 2015 3rd round draft pick - Alton HS - Alton, IL) got "piggy-back" duty today, following Brooks and Leathersich to the mound. Like Dylan Cease yesterday, Hudson was supposed to stretch-out a bit today and throw five innings and/or about 75 pitches (whichever came first), but he hit 71 pitches after only 2.0 IP, and so I guess he'll have to try and make it through five innings next time out. The 19-year old lefthander allowed three runs on six hits (two doubles and four singles) and four walks (and a WP) and was lucky to surrender only three runs given the ten baserunners he allowed, but he benefited from four well-timed strikeouts (his stuff wasn't all bad, he just couldn't command it) and an Angel batter thrown out trying to stretch a double into a triple. This was definitely Hudson's worst outing as a pro.
Here is the abridged box score from the game (Cubs players only):
1. Roberto Caro, CF: 1-4 (E-6, 3B, 3-U, K, SB)
2. Robert Garcia, DH #1: 1-4 (K, P-5, 2B, 4-3, R)
3. Kevonte Mitchell, RF: 1-4 (K, F-9, 1B, K, R, SB)
4. Isaac Paredes, SS: 0-4 (6-3, F-8, L-7, K)
5. Alberto Mineo, 1B: 1-2 (3B, BB, K, BB, R)
6. Rafael Mejia, 3B: 2-4 (6-3, 4-3, 2B, 1B, R, 3 RBI)
7. Jhonny Pereda, C: 1-4 (3-U, 3-1, 1B, F-8, RBI)
8. Vimael Machin, 2B: 0-3 (HBP, K, 4-3, 4-6-3 DP)
9. Ruben Reyes, LF: 0-3 (F-7, L-5, K)
10. Eric Gonzalez, DH #2: 1-3 (L-8, 1B, K)
1. Aaron Brooks: 3.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 B, 3 K, 3/2 GO/AO, 32 pitches (24 strikes)
2. Jack Leathersich: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO, 15 pitches (11 strikes)
3. Bryan Hudson: 2.0 IP, 6 H, 3 R (3 ER), 4 BB, 4 K, 1 WP, 1/0 GO/AO, 71 pitches (37 strikes)
4. Andry Rondon: 2.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 3 K, 2/0 GO/AO, 36 pitches (21 strikes)
CUBS ERRORS: 1
P Andry Rondon - E-1 (dropped catch attempting 3-1 put-out allowed batter to reach base safely)
CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Jhonny Pereda: 2-4 CS, 1 PO
CUBS OUTFIELD ASSISTS:
LF Ruben Reyes - batter thrown out 7-6-5 attempting to stretch double into triple
WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's