Carrier Gets Carried Away and Pacheco Gets Carted Off, Leaving Remaining Cubs in the Dark

Chris Carrier drove-in two runs with a solo HR and two singles and scored twice, Fernando Kelli tripled, singled, walked, and scored a run. and Jonathan Sierra and Reivaj Garcia each drilled an RBI double and a single and scored a run, in an eight-inning Cubs Extended Spring Training intrasquad game played Saturday night on Field #1 at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ. 

Carrier hit his HR in the bottom of the 6th right after being informed that he was being called-up to one of the Cubs full-season affiliates (presumably South Bend, but it could have been one of the others), so after blasting the bomb far over the LF fence, Carrier gathered his gear, hugged his teammates, and made a bee-line for the UAPC (slip-sliding on the concrete in the process) and then to Sky Harbor Airport. (It's always a trip when a player at Extended Spring Training gets called-up during a game). 

On a more somber note, Carlos Pacheco was carried off the field after suffering what appeared to be a serious leg injury in the top of the 7th after tripping over 1st base while attempting to beat-out an infield hit. 

The game was called with a score of 8-6 prior to the start of the 9th inning after the lights suddenly switched themselves off. (Unbeknownst to Carmelo Martinez and the rest of the EXST Cubs, the lights were pre-set to turn off automatically at 10 PM so that the Riverview Park ground crew and City of Mesa personnel could go home without having to wait around for the game to end, but none of the Cubs knew how to over-ride the timer and turn them back on). Dalton Geekie and Yan de la Cruz were warmed-up and ready to throw one inning each, but obviously they were unable to get their scheduled game-work. (The Field #1 sprinklers also turned themselves on automatically a few minutes prior to start of the game).  

The Cubs will be playing AZL home games at both Sloan Park (the Cubs Spring Training stadium) and across the street at Riverview Park Field #1 (the only Riverview back-field with lights) on nights when both AZL Cubs #1 and AZL Cubs #2 are scheduled to play home games, so it's probably good to be aware of potential problems and get the glitches worked-out now rather than after the AZL season starts.  

Here is the box score from the game: 

SQUAD "A" LINEUP:
1. D. J. Wilson, CF-DH: 1-4 (E-4, 3B, F-7, L-7, R, RBI, CS)
2. Fernando Kelli, LF-CF: 2-3 (3B, 4-3, 1B, BB, R)
3. Jonathan Sierra, RF: 2-4 (F-8 DP, 6-3, 1B, 2B, R, RBI, CS)
4a. Cam Balego, C: 0-2 (K, BB, K)
4b. Kevin Zamudio, C: 0-0 (HBP, R)
5. Yovanny Cuevas, DH #1: 0-2 (5-3, BB, P-2, BB)
6a. Carlos Pacheco, DH #2: 0-2 (BB, 5-3 DP, 6-3) 
6b. Kevin Moreno, LF: 1-1 (1B, 2 RBI, CS)
7a. Luis Vazquez, SS: 0-3 (K, 6-3, F-8)
7b. Yonathan Perlaza, SS: 0-1 (3-U)
8. Fidel Mejia, 3B: 1-2 (BB, F-9, 1B, 2 R)
9. Reivaj Garcia, 2B: 2-3 (4-3, 1B, 2B, R, RBI)
10. Luis Hidalgo, 1B: 1-3 (2B, K, K, R, RBI)

SQUAD "B" LINEUP:
1. Luis Diaz, 2B-DH: 1-3 (2B, K, F-8, R)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
2a. Chris Carrier, DH #1: 3-3 (1B, 1B, HR, 2 R, 2 RBI)
2b. Ramsey Romano, 2B: 0-1 (K) 
3. Orian Nunez, 3B: 1-3 (2B, 6-3, BB, F-9, R, RBI)
4. Jonathan Soto, C: 2-4 (1B, K, 1B, 6-3)
5. Christopher Morel, SS: 0-3 (F-8 SF, F-8, L-6, 5-3, RBI)
6. Henderson Perez, DH #2: 0-2 (4-3 DP, BB, 5-3, PO)
7. Abraham Rodriguez, LF-DH: 1-3 (3B, K, 4-3, R)
8a. Kwangmin Kwon, RF: 0-3 (K, K, K)
8b. Ruben Reyes, RF: NO AB 
9. Jose A. Gonzalez, DH-CF: 1-1 (3B, R)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST TWO TIMES THRU BATTING ORDER
10. Jose Gutierrez, CF-LF: 1-2 (F-9 SF, 6-3, 3B, 2 RBI)
11. Gustavo Polanco, 1B: 1-3 (1B, 6-3, K)

SQUAD "A" PITCHERS
1. Faustino Carrera: 5.0 IP, 8 H, 5 R (5 ER), 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR, 1 PO, 1 GIDP, 4/4 GO/AO, 70 pitches (51 strikes) 
2. Mitch Stophel: 1.2 IP, 3 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 2 K, 2/1 GO/AO, 42 pitches (28 strikes) 
3. Raidel Orta: 1.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/1 GO/AO, 20 pitches (12 strikes) 

SQUAD "B" PITCHERS
1. Erling Moreno: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 1/1 GO/AO, 28 pitches (17 strikes) 
2. Chi-Feng Lee: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 3 R (3 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 1 GIDP, 5/0 GO/AO, 36 pitches (16 strikes) 
3. Alfredo Colorado: 2.2 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 1/4 GO/AO, 37 pitches (22 strikes) 
4. Sean Barry: 1.1 IP, 4 H, 5 R (5 ER), 2 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 4 WP, 1/1 GO/AO, 45 pitches (25 strikes) 

SQUAD "A" ERRORS: NONE 

SQUAD "B" ERRORS: 1 
2B Luis Diaz: E-4 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely) 

SQUAD "B" CATCHERS DEFENSE
Jonathan Soto: 3-3 CS 

CUBS SQUAD "B" OUTFIELD ASSIST
CF Jose Gutierrez threw out runner (Fernando Kelli) attempting to score from 3rd base after F-8 

ATTENDANCE: 4

WEATHER: Clear skies with temperatures 100+ 

Arizona 
Scoring
Service 

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

Comments

How is Erling Moreno looling? Why is he still in Arizona? Thanks Phil.

HAGSAG: Erling Moreno has been at EXST working on his mechanics since the end of Minor League Camp and he is doing very well. His FB is consistently at 95-96 T 97-98 and he shows a good feel for his breaking ball (with command). His future is very likely as a reliever. (He reminds me a lot of Hector Rondon).

Moreno is Rule 5 Draft-eligible post-2018, and while he really isn't close to being MLB-ready, he could be a candidate to get plucked by a rebuilding team if the Cubs don't add him to the 40 by 11/20.

Phil,

With the league schedule starting soon, how many players do you anticipate being released from the current camp list?

 

VIDEO: With Eugene and now two AZL Cubs teams, the Cubs really don't have to release anybody this year even after the draft picks start arriving. That doesn't mean nobody will get released, because you want players to compete without feeling like they have a free ride. But this season is one year when the Cubs really need "bodies" in the AZL.

You can probably tell from the EXST game box scores I post here who plays or pitches regularly and who are the back-up or second-tier guys. The best prospects start more often and hit higher in the batting order when they do play, while the others start less-often and usually come into games late (just like NRI guys in MLB Spring Training) or pitch fewer innings and/or more irregularly.

FWIW, the EXST Cubs top 15 prospects right now are fairly obvious: SS-3B Christopher Morel (he's definitely been one of the top position-player prospects among players from ALL organizations in Cactus League EXST games and is also probably a Cubs organizational Top 10 prospect), C Jonathan Soto (the #2 catching prospect in the organization behind Miguel Amaya and probably an overall Cubs organizational Top 15), RHSP Jose Albertos (a Top 5 Cubs prospect prior to his extreme command issues but probably still a Top 15), Brailyn Marquez (clearly the top pitching prospects at Cubs EXST and probably a Cubs Top 20 prospect), Luis Vazquez (Top 25), Fernando Kelli (Top 25), Luis Verdugo (Top 30), Henderson Perez (Top 30), Jeremiah Estrada (Top 30), Luis Diaz, Jonathan Sierra, Faustino Carrera, Abraham Rodriguez, Eury Ramos, and Orian Nunez (I would say probably in about that order).

What's somewhat interesting is that most of the top prospects at Cubs Extended Spring Training this year are position-player prospects rather than SP prospects.  

The Cubs (perhaps more than most other MLB organizations) like to challenge their best prospects with aggressive promotions, so I would not be too surprised if Morel and Soto (and perhaps Kelli) jump the AZL and go directly to Eugene. (Marquez, Vazquez, Estrada, Sierra, Carrera, and Ramos played or pitched in the AZL last year. so they were likely ticketed for Eugene anyway). NOTE: Estrada has not pitched since leaving an EXST game at Angels a week ago yesterday with a right elbow issue, so I don't know if he will be initially assigned to Eugene or remain in Mesa for a while.

You have more access than I do. I have been told the following. Sign South Carolina's Justin Row. No idea, but you're my antenna out there. .965 OPS in the SEC as a middle infielder. All for now.

PHIL: Have you gotten a chance to see the all-everything former Golden Gopher, Brian .Glowicki while he was out your way? What are your thoughts? He is doing “ok” for South Bend currently, but there was a great deal of buzz when the Cubs drafted him, at least in the Big Ten circles.

E-MAN: RHRP Brian Glowicki (who was the Cubs 2017 10th round pick) as well as OF Chris Carrier (who was the Cubs 2017 9th round pick) were Top 10 round selections only because they agreed in advance to sign for $5,000, which is $125K+ below their draft slot values. That way, the Cubs 2017 Signing Bonus Pool could be increased for rounds #1-8, which allowed the Cubs could to sign 5th round pick OF Nelson Velazquez and 6th round pick RHSP Jeremiah Estrada for "over-slot" bonuses.

So it was entirely possible that Glowicki would not have been drafted at all if he had not agreed in advance to sign for $5,000, or if he was drafted later, it would have probably been in the round #30 range.

But despite having just average stuff (at best) across the board, Glowicki has done a nice job as a closer in pro ball (so far), and as long as he continues to get outs he will continue get opportunities to pitch. He throws strikes and competes, and sometimes that's half the battle right there.

Bottom line is, Glowicki and Carrier did the Cubs a solid last year, and I would think they will get a "longer leash" and more deference going forward than other draft picks of similar talent. They still have to perform, however.

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    MLBTR has an update on the latest owner's revision proposal. 

     

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