Balls

J-Hey reached double figures Tuesday night, less than halfway through the season after managing only eight all of last year, and he’s not the only one who’s putting up some impressive HR numbers in 2019.

Monday was Getaway Day for the I-Cubs. It was a beautiful day for a ballgame in Des Moines and this one was scheduled for a noon start. Even though I work for the school district and summer break is in full swing, I had to report for light duty. The best I could do was pack a sack lunch to enjoy at the ballpark along with the first couple of innings, so that’s what I did. I ate my ham sandwich in the parking lot, then sat in the sun-soaked bleachers to watch the first inning before heading back to work. But first, I decided to walk a lap around the ballpark which straddles two rivers. I’d just rounded the RF corner when the idling crowd started to rev and I looked up to see heads turning in my general direction. I looked higher and picked up the flight of a ball riding a generous breeze clear out of the park where it landed on a concrete terrace of fountains and bounced to a stop in the grass beyond. I was the only one nearby and could have taken my time retrieving the bright white meteorite. Still, I hustled as quick as I’m able. Always have with regard to baseball(s). That’s HR #4 for me this spring/summer. A few weeks ago, I recorded my first-ever two-homer game. In addition, I’ve collected 3 in-park foul balls, 1 parking lot foul and 4 BP balls; 2 outdoors and 2 that escaped the indoor clubhouse batting cage through a door left slightly ajar. Last year I tallied a career high 11 PCL pearls, none of which were homeruns (though one was the single hit by Kris Bryant when he stopped here for a few games on his way back into the Chicago lineup late last August. After it was taken out of play and trickled back to the I-Cub dugout, Taylor Davis handed it to me in the dugout annex reserved for shutterbugs.). In the gift shop they sell pristine ones for $20. To me, the abrasions on mine are worth more. (For the record, The Hannemann hit it. Mostly he runs well and plays strong OF defense, but he’s wearing other caps since rejoining the I-Cubs after EXST. He’s had a couple appearances as a pitcher and he later homered again on Monday. Everybody likes hitting the juicy MLB balls in PCL clothing they’re playing with this year.)

Comments

Thanks for the scene, Mike! (Almost makes up for not being able to take my lunch by the ballpark!)

games attended by me: hundreds - balls caught by me: zero

games attended by my wife: a few dozen - balls caught my my wife: two (one literally bounced into her lap)

*shrug*

CRUNCH: The following is an absolutely true story:

I can't say I've been to hundreds of Cubs games, but it's been quite a few. I, too, had never gotten a ball until one day in 2004 during batting practice. (To this day, I've never gotten an in-game ball.) I was in the left field bleachers and a ball rolled onto the warning track. Moises Alou was out there shagging and came over to get the ball. I yelled, "Moises! Hey, Moises! I've been coming to Cubs games for 30 years and have never gotten a ball!" He looked at me like "yeah, right" and tossed the ball to a pretty girl. Another ball rolled onto the warning track and again I called out, "Moises, serioulsy, I've been coming to Cubs games for 30 years and have never gotten a ball!" He again looked at me in disbelief, and this time tossed the ball to a kid. But I didn't give up, on the next ball I did the same thing. "Hey! Moises, c'mon man, I'm serious! I've been coming to Cubs games for 30 years and I've never gotten a ball!" He looked up at me and asked, "For real?" I said, "Yeah, man, for real." And , much to my surprise, he tossed it to me. Everyone around me in the bleachers cheered. 

A short while later, another ball rolled over in my direction and again Alou came to retrieve it. I yelled, "Hey, Moises, I've been coming to Cubs games for 30 years and only gotten 1 ball!" He, and everyone around me, laughed. He looked up and said, "Now that's funny. man," and tossed me that one, too. 

haha.  awesome.

that was funny.

*tosses you a ball that didn't come from someone who pees on his hands*

Recent comments

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  • JustSayin' 3 days 8 hours ago (view)

     I hear you but welcome to the world of Theo.  The team is always a step or two away from the World Series in his mind, whether that is true or not.  Therefore, the thing to do on the margin is to trade top prospects or younger guys on the roster for that missing puzzle piece, not build for the future.  I had a front-row seat for this as a Red Sox fan.  If Pedro Martinez doesn't insist the Red Sox sign David Ortiz for table scraps and Chris Bryant isn't the no-brainer second pick in the draft, we'd all be wondering what happened to that Theo guy who was in the Red S

     

  • Cubster 3 days 9 hours ago (view)

    Shogo Akiyama is a lefty bat, career BA at.301 w/ Seibu Lions.  Recent OBPs: .419, .385, .398, .403 and .392. HR 20-15 in last 3 seasons Stolen bases, 12 in 2019, 18 in best season (2016). Defense supposedly plus-plus, 7-10 assists (10 in 2016). Clearly a leadoff hitter.

     

  • crunch 4 days 2 hours ago (view)

    christian yelich committed internet homicide on yu darvish...

    https://twitter.com/ChristianYelich/status/1195462...

     

  • Charlie 4 days 6 hours ago (view)

    Little in the offseason could make me happier than the Cubs finding ways to retain the good MLB players who came up with them while remaining competitive. This Javy extension talk makes me much happier as a fan than the Bryant and Contreras trade talk.

     

  • crunch 4 days 6 hours ago (view)

    "Javy Baez. The two-time All-Star shortstop and 2018 MVP runner-up already has begun negotiations on a potential long-term extension with the Cubs, according to sources."

    also, some talk of being linked to shogo akiyama (CF, Japan, 32yo in April)

    https://chicago.suntimes.com/cubs/2019/11/15/20966...

     

  • crunch 5 days 3 hours ago (view)

    j.odorizzi accepted his qualifying offer (17.8m) from MIN...so did j.abreu (CWS)....everyone else is gonna play the FA market.

    w.smith (SF) immediately signed with the braves for 3/39 (13m team option/1m buyout on the backend).  braves lose a 2nd round pick...which they'll probably get back when someone signs j.donaldson.

     

  • crunch 6 days 3 hours ago (view)

    nice.

    it's not like i think he's something special, but if he had 5mph more on his stuff he'd probably be a top prospect in the system combined with his command/control.  he's got highly repeatable junk and he's still young enough there might be a little more velocity to discover.

     

  • Arizona Phil 6 days 6 hours ago (view)

    CRUNCH: As long as Carrera is placed on the AAA Iowa reserve list on 11/20 he should be safe from selection, and I would say he is in fact close to a lock to be placed on the Iowa roster.

    Presuming he is on the Iowa reserve list going into the Rule 5 Draft, I doubt very much that he would get selected in the Major League Phase because he hasn't pitched above Lo-A. 

     

  • crunch 6 days 6 hours ago (view)

    nice info...

    i'm low-key keeping an eye on faustino carrera if he's not protected...which he may not be protected.

    he throws junk, but he throws it well, and with great control.

     

  • Arizona Phil 6 days 6 hours ago (view)

    I've talked to Player Development people over the past many years about the Rule 5 Draft and how an organization goes about deciding whether to protect or not protect a player from selection. 

    STEP 1: How many of your Rule 5 Draft-eligible players are actually legit candidates to get selected in the Major League Phase?. Usually there a dozen or more who could conceivably/realisticaly get selected. You need to identify them and then carefully evaluate them. 
    EXAMPLES: See my lists above. 

     

  • crunch 6 days 9 hours ago (view)

    "There are no untouchables," Epstein said.

    In truth, the Cubs boss has said the same every year, but it certainly sounds like he means it this time. "We're in the 'information collecting' stages of the process," one general manager put it on Tuesday.

    https://www.espn.com/mlb/story/_/id/28066390/there...

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 week 11 hours ago (view)

    I think, in relation to the higher profile guys like Javy or Contreras, they're trying to put some pressure on to sign extensions.

    That said I do think they're listening on everyone with the only name I haven't seen being Rizzo.

     

  • crunch 1 week 1 day ago (view)

    i wonder where the cubs will go with things.

    there's a lot pointing to the cubs being expected to listen to offers on almost anyone.  as it is, on paper, the cubs could roll right into 2020 with no changes whatsoever and still field a very competitive team.  the whole "shakeup" thing seems to be a very hot topic from a variety of sources, though.

    bryant, contreras, schwarber have all been linked to "cubs may be listening" rumors...probably listening to anything on happ, bote, almora, russell, too...

     

  • Hagsag 1 week 1 day ago (view)

    Even the Cubs should be able to out bid the Marlins!

     

  • crunch 1 week 1 day ago (view)

    "According to Joe Frisaro of MLB.com, the Marlins are "believed" to have interest in free agent outfielder Nicholas Castellanos."

    by interest, i assume they mean they'd like to have some baseball rookie cards or his or maybe a hug from him.  i can't imagine they actually want to spend money on someone they could use to make their team better because that makes no sense.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 week 1 day ago (view)

    Prior to joining the Cubs in 2012 Scott Harris was Director of Baseball Operations in the MLB office, which means he received, reviewed, and approved all major league and minor league contracts and transactions, as well as providing MLB clubs with schedules, rules updates, and draft information.