Cubs Have Little to Show for 2017 First-Round Pick

Eddy Julio Martinez reached base on a HBP, tripled, singled, stole a base, and scored, and collected an RBI with a sacrifice fly, Yonathan Perlaza tripled, singled, stole a base, and scored a run, Oswaldo Pina ripped a two-run double and a single, and SP Brendon Little tossed two perfect innings and combined with five relievers on a two-hitter, as the Cubs "A" team defeated the Giants Orange squad 5-1 in Cactus League Extended Spring Training game action Saturday morning on Field #1 at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ. 

The game was pre-planned as a ten-inning contest. 

The Cubs 2017 1st round draft pick out of SCF - Sarasota-Manatee, Little saw his first game action of the season after suffering a lat strain in his first "live" BP session the first week of Minor League Camp in March. And Little didn't miss a beat, either, easily retiring all six Giants he faced (P-2, F-8, K * F-9, 4-3, 5-3) on just 14 pitches. He displayed a 92-94 MPH FB, a plus-CV, and a CH, and he had command of all three of his pitches and threw all three pitches for strikes. In fact he was so efficient that after he finished his two innings, he was sent down to the bullpen to throw an additional 15 pitches (five FB, five CV, and five CH). So things are looking up for Little. 

Prior to the Cactus League EXST game on Field #1, RHSP Keegan Thompson (on AA Tennessee 7-day IL since April 11th) threw a two-inning "sim" game on Field #5. 

Here is the abridged box score from the Cactus League EXST game on Field #1 (Cubs players only): 

CUBS "A" TEAM LINEUP:
1. Fernando Kelli, CF: 1-4 (K, K, K, 1B, R, SB)
2. Angel Pagan, LF-RF: 0-4 (1-3, 1-3, L-8, F-7)
3. Eddy Julio Martinez, RF-DH: 2-2 (HBP, 3B, 1B, F-9 SF, R, RBI, SB)
4. Yonathan Perlaza, 2B: 2-4 (K, L-7, 1B, 3B, R, SB)
5. Henderson Perez, C: 1-4 (4-3, HBP, 6-U FC, 1B, 2 RBI, SB)
6. Jake Slaughter, 1B: 1-3 (1B, 6-4-3 DP, K, HBP, R)
7. Luis Diaz, 3B: 1-4 (1B, K, K, K, R)
8. Oswaldo Pina, SS: 2-4 (2B, 1-3, 1B, 5-3, 2 RBI)
9. Carlos Pacheco, DH-LF: 0-4 (K, K, 5-4 FC, K)
10. Danny Zardon, DH #2: 1-4 (P-6, 2B, L-8, F-8)

CUBS "A" TEAM PITCHERS
1. Brendon Little: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/3 GO/AO, 14 pitches (10 strikes)
2. Chad Hockin: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 1  (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 1 BALK, 3/0 GO/AO, 34 pitches (18 strikes)
3. Enrique de los Rios: 2.1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 GIDP, 2/2 GO/AO, 23 pitches (15 strikes) 
4. Blake Whitney: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 1/2 GO/AO, 17 pitches (14 strikes)
5. Elias Herrera: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 3/0 GO/AO, 12 pitches (5 strikes)
6. Riley McCauley: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO, 21 pitches (12 strikes)

CUBS "A" TEAM ERRORS: 1 
3B Luis Diaz: E-5 (fielding miscue allowed batter to reach base safely) 

ATTENDANCE: 12 

WEATHER: Sunny with temperatures in the 90's 

Arizona 
Scoring 
Service 

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

Comments

I saw outfielders Carlos Morfa and Kevin Moreno get hugs and handshakes as they left the bench and headed for the clubhouse prior to the conclusion of yesterday's game and they were absent today at BP, so they may be headed for the DSL. I wouldn't be surprised if LHP Joel Machado and RHP Willy Cabrera (and possibly RHP Manuel Espinoza) got a ticket to the DSL, too, since they are now M. I. A. as well.  

AZ PHIL- Bummer about Duncan Robinson, but along those same lines what in the world makes Corey Black so special that they'd hang on to him this long, one TJS is acceptable, worry some, but acceptable.  A second I'd likely say too much.  Then he struggles after 2 getting healthy, and now a 3rd TJS and (so far) they have kept him or is he expected to be released.  Is this just Theo wanting to say I got something for Soriano (a lot of dr bills)

cubbies.4ever: I don't think the Cubs saw the most recent Black TJS #3 coming or they wouldn't have offered him a 2019 minor league contract after he became a minor league 6YFA post-2018. But generally speaking, as long as the player follows the rehab program the Cubs will usually keep the guy until he's somewhat close to being healthy and no longer requires rehab services.

Not speaking from personal experience you understand, but it's sort of like being on Death Row. They won't execute you while you have the flu. They wait until you're healthy, then you can be executed. 

at least corey black has more time to sit around and tweet about how "the circle game" is absolutely nothing else, and why in the world would anyone think otherwise because there's obviously never been a huge pile of video, written, and photographic evidence otherwise.

Gotcha.  Theo really does like his TJS pitchers though.  On their 40 alone, Chatwood 2x, Collins 2x, Darvish, Rosario, Mills, Steele, Graveman.  Throw in Duensing.  Plus a bunch of minor leaguers.  How many of those pitchers have done anything worth while (Given Steele and Graveman get a TBD card) for the Cubs?  Maybe there's a theme here.  You always hear about the Adam Wainwright success stories, but never about the Corey Black's.

ken rosenthal reports the cubs are exploring craig kimbrel (according to "major-league sources") thanks in part to money saved from this zobrist incident (about $2m a month).

OF Eddy Julio Martinez was moved back up to AA Tennessee after Saturday's Cactus League EXST game at Riverview. His hard-contact rate has been outstanding and he has been displaying his full five-tool package in games. 

speaking of draft picks...

i don't think i've ever seen such a lack of interest in the draft on this board or from cubs fans in general.  it's hard to project such late picks, which takes some excitement out of it, but the interest from fans seems to be at a near all-time low in my recent memory.

Ever?

I don''t  think Cubs faans tend a much toward college in the first place. With no chaatter from the paid talkinng heads, no bonus picks, and it gets useless  to write  on the  topic.

i'm just saying the draft is tomorrow and not only have i not seen any discussion here, some of the "real life" local cubs fans i know haven't even chimed in about the draft in any cubs talk we've been having.

it's a personal observance rather than some cold, hard fact, but the draft seems to have little interest from cubdom.

CRUNCH: The MLB draft is just so different from the NFL and NBA drafts because even players selected in the 1st round aren't MLB-ready and (in most cases) won't surface in the big leagues until maybe two or three years later (if at all), and so it's hard for fans to wrap their heads around it.   

What I usually do is check the most-recent Baseball America mock (which was posted today) and get a general idea of who BA believes is on the Cubs radar at #27 overall:

1. Braden Shewmake, SS (Texas A&M) - BA has this as the Cubs pick - lanky 6'4 athletic SS who sounds like a LH-hitting version of D. J. LeMahieu (good hitter but not much power, probably can't stay long-term at SS, could end up as multi-positional super-sub utility guy);  
2. Kameron Misner, CF (U. of Missouri) - sounds a lot like Brett Jackson (6'4 toolsy CF, LH hitter with HR power, plus-speed, takes walks, strikes out a lot); 
3. Michael Toglia, 1B-LF (UCLA) - 6'5 switch-hitter, has HR power to all fields, takes walks, lots of strikeouts;
4. Rece Hinds, 3B (IMG Academy - Bradenton, FL) - LSU recruit is 6'4 beast & has the most pure raw HR power in the draft & throws 98 MPH if he doesn't make it as position player (or could he be viewed as a possible future two-way player?). Throws & bats right.   

Interestingly all four of the guys mentioned by BA in relation to the Cubs 1st round pick are at least 6'4 and are position players, and three of them are big-time HR hitters (especially Hinds).  

Of course last year the Cubs selected SS Nico Hoerner (Stanford) with their 1st round pick and - NOBODY - saw that one coming, so outside of the Cubs draft room nobody really knows who (or what) the Cubs are targeting with the #27 overall pick. 

weak pitching crop this draft...lot of "tools and high ceiling" guys and not many slam dunks (a.rutschman, a.vaughn, b.witt, jj.bleday).  even the slam dunks aren't that impressive except for a.rutschman.

rustchman got IBB a few days ago with the bases loaded and 0 outs.  that's b.bonds-level fear.

seeing cubs/misner linked on more than a few lists.

AA's last 3 outings @ Iowa: IP:17 H:6 BB:2 SO:23

Phil...now that extended spring trainInglis is over, what are your overall observations? Players to watch this year?

Brendon Little with an outstanding three-inning "sim" game at Riverview Park on Friday: 45 pitches - 34 strikes, 13 swings & misses. FB velo holding at 92-94 with a plus-CV and CH. 

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  • crunch 7 hours 3 min ago (view)

    https://images.spot.im/v1/production/gsqady7hf53k5duw7hhf

     

  • tim815 7 hours 32 min ago (view)

    He's better than Taylor Davis.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 8 hours 14 min ago (view)

    He's at a career juncture where I think he is a toss up of he is who he is or there's a little more left for him to achieve. Playing this as his age 27 season he is either in or damn close to his peak. I personally think he doesn't need the everyday playing time, just based on the fact that he's not a top prospect, is older, and doesn't project to be a starter at any spot for a first division team.

     

  • Charlie 9 hours 12 min ago (view)

    This is the take if you see him as a legit prospect. Which, maybe? I know little about him, and his numbers in limited AAA exposure last season were really nice. Maybe a lively ball helps his career.

     

  • bradsbeard 9 hours 30 min ago (view)

    Sounds like a long shot to get a trade done then. Thanks for clarifying!

     

  • Arizona Phil 9 hours 50 min ago (view)

    BRADSBEARD: Before making a trade with the Rule 5 Draft pick's former club, the drafting club must first place the player on Outright Assignment Waivers and any of the other MLB clubs can claim the player for the $50,000 waiver price and assume the Rule 5 Draft obligations (actually it's Rule 6 Selected Player obligations, but you know what I mean). 

     

  • bradsbeard 11 hours 5 min ago (view)

    AZ Phil, the "work out a trade" part of Rule 5 is still a mystery to me. Do the Cubs have to put Megill through waivers and (if he clears) offer him back to SD before they can trade for him?

     

  • Arizona Phil 11 hours 5 min ago (view)

    For those of you who didn't see the game, here are the pitch-velo readings from Wednsdays Cubs - Royals game: 

    Kyle Hendricks: 
    FB: 84-87 
    CH: 77-80 
    CV: 78-80
    NOTES: An amazing pitcher... he's probably in mid-season form right now...  just needs to gradually increase innings...   

    Alec Mills: 
    FB: 89-92 
    SL: 80-82 
    CH: 77-80 
    CV: 66-70 
    NOTES: A legit candidate to be the 5th starter 

     

  • Craig A. 12 hours 4 min ago (view)

    he

     

  • Craig A. 12 hours 4 min ago (view)

    He'll be 27 in May and he's played in 36 games at AAA. Seems like he should be playing regularly. 

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 12 hours 48 min ago (view)

    I really like this idea. They've talked of a 3rd catcher as 26th meaning Phegley, who seems a waste of roster space, good spring notwithstanding. Higgins is far more interesting 

     

  • tim815 15 hours 55 min ago (view)

    Is Brailyn Marquez getting any time in big league camp? Having him around the veterans would seem a solid use of resources.

    Thanks, as always.

     

  • Charlie 16 hours 15 min ago (view)

    Hot take: The Cubs should be considering PJ Higgins as the potential 26th man. 3rd catcher / infield sub who can put the bat on the ball.

    I think I'm just stealing an AZ Phil projection from a while ago, actually. But it makes sense!

     

  • Charlie 17 hours 18 min ago (view)

    Zagunis's stock has dropped a lot since his first exposure to MLB pitching. His 2019 at AAA is particularly alarming given the power spike in that league.

     

  • Hagsag 22 hours 53 min ago (view)

    I see that Dillon Maples hasn't pitched yet. Is he injured or spending time in the lab?

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 6 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have purchased the contract of 26-year old RHRP Jonathan de Marte from Quebec (Frontier League) and he has been assigned to AZL Cubs Blue.

    He is the closer for Team Israel and has no previous experience in affiliated ball.

    He was a NDFA out of the U. of Richmond in 2017 and has been playing independent ball for the past three seasons in the Atlantic League and Can-Am League as well as winter ball in Australia this past winter.