Rosscup Strikes Fear into the Hearts of A's at Sloan Park

Shane Conlon drilled two singles and a double, reached base on an HBP, scored two runs, and drove-in three more, leading the AZL Athletics to a 10-2 drubbing of the AZL Cubs in Arizona League action Saturday night at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ. 

The final two innings were played in a light drizzle.  

Yohan Matos ended a 1-25 skid by lining a bases-loaded opposite-field two-run single with two outs in the bottom of the 9th to account for the two Cub runs and avert what otherwise would have been a shutout.  

LHP Manny Rondon (acquired from the Los Angeles Angels for catcher Rafael Lopez earlier this month) got the start for the AZL Cubs and was terrible, allowing seven runs (six earned) on five hits and three walks and a WP in just 1.1 IP, including a 30-pitch 2nd inning in which he retired only one batter. 

LHRP Zac Rosscup (on Cubs MLB 15-day DL with left shoulder inflammation since June 17th) made his second AZL appearance of the week and was brilliant, working one inning (16 pitches - 12 strikes) and striking out the side, with a virtually unhittable mixture of 94 MPH fastball and hard-breaking slider. The young A's hitters looked totally befuddled trying to deal with Rosscup's plus-stuff.  

20-year old RHP M. T. Minacci (Cubs 2015 33rd round draft pick - Powermill Training Academy) worked a 1-2-3 7th inning (6-3, F-7, 4-3). Minacci was a teammate of Cubs 2014 4th round draft pick LHP Carson Sands at North Florida Christian HS in Tallahassee, and was selected by the Colorado Rockies in the 20th round of the 2013 First-Year Player Draft (Rule 4 Draft) but did not sign,. He chose instead to enroll at Florida State, but then transferred to Chipola College after only one semester at FSU, before joining Powermill last year. Minacci was working primarily with his fastball (90-92 MPH) Saturday night, with an  occasional slider and change-up mixed-in.   

In AZL Cubs roster news, LHP Tyler Peitzmeier (Cubs 2015 9th round draft pick - Cal State Fullerton) has been moved up to Eugene, and LHP Heath Dwyer (2015 NDFA - Virginia Commonwealth) has been moved down to AZL Cubs from Eugene. Dwyer pitched the 9th inning for the AZL Cubs in Saturday night's game, and was tagged for two runs on three hits (a single, a double, and a triple). Dwyer is a soft-tossing lefty who features a mid-80's fastball, a curve, and a plus-change up, but his smoke & mirrors stuff didn't fool the A's hitters. 

Here is the abridged box score from Saturday night's game (Cubs players only):  

AZL CUBS LINEUP:
1. Robert Garcia, CF: 1-5 (4-3, 3-U, 5-3, L-3, 1B, R)
2. Carlos Sepulveda, 2B: 1-5 (6-3, 1B, L-3, 4-3, E-8, R)
3. Michael Foster, LF: 1-4 (BB, K, 1B, F-8, K)
4. Alex Bautista, RF: 1-3 (4-3, BB, 1B, K, BB)
5. Yohan Matos, 1B: 1-5 (K, 5-3, 5-U FC, K, 1B, 2 RBI)
6. Carlos Jimenez, 3B: 1-5 (1-3, 6-3, 4-3, 1B, L-7)
7. Tyler Payne, C: 1-3 (BB, 4-3, 1B, F-9)
8. Andruw Monasterio, SS: 0-3 (BB, F-8, 5-4 FC, K)
9. Donnie Cimino, DH: 1-3 (HBP, P-4, 1B, F-8)

AZL CUBS PITCHERS:
1. Manny Rondon: 1.1 IP, 5 H, 7 R (6 ER), 3 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 2/1 GO/FO, 45 pitches (25 strikes)
2. Carlos Rodriguez: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 1 GIDP, 2/3 GO/FO, 44 pitches (24 strikes)
3. Zac Rosscup: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 16 pitches (12 strikes)  
4. M. T. Minacci: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1/2 GO/FO, 11 pitches (6 strikes) 
5. John Michael Knighton: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 3 K, 3/0 GO/FO, 22 pitches (12 strikes) 
6. Heath Dwyer: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R (2 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/FO, 18 pitches (13 strikes) 

AZL CUBS ERRORS: 3 
1. RF Alex Bautista: E-9 (throwing error on line single to RF allowed batter & baserunners to advance an extra base)
2. P Carlos Rodriguez: E-1 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
3. SS Andruw Monasterio: E-6 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely) :  

AZL CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE
Tyler Payne: 0-1 CS 

AZL CUBS OUTFIELD ASSIST
CF Robert Garcia - baserunner thrown out attempting to advance from 2nd to 3rd on fly out to CF

Comments

With Soriano coming, Rosscup on the mend, and a trade for Papelbon a possibility, this bullpen shake out will be interesting.

Ugh. I don't think Jedstein is going to bite on Papelbon.