Two Red Taters Sink Angels/Cubs at Riverview

Aristides Aquino and Jose Siri belted solo home runs, providing just enough offense to allow the Reds to edge the Angels/Cubs co-op team 2-1 in AZ Advanced Instructional League game action Wednesday afternoon on Field #1 at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ. 

The game was pre-planned as a seven-inning affair. 

Here is the box score from the game (Cubs players highlighted in bold & underlined): 

1. T. J. Friedl, CF:  0-2 (K, BB, 1-3, SB)
2. Gabriel Ovalle, SS-1B: 0-2 (K, BB, 6-3)
3a. Phil Ervin, LF: 0-2 (K, K)
3b. Daniel Sweet, LF: 0-1 (6-3)
4a. Aristides Aquino, RF: 1-2 (HR, F-7, R, RBI)
4b. Jose Siri, RF: 1-1 (HR, R, RBI)
5a. James Vasquez, 1B: 0-2 (4-3, 6-3)
5b. Alfredo Rodriguez, SS: 0-1 (4-3)
6. Chris Okey, DH: 0-2 (K, 6-3, BB)
7a. John Sansone, 2B: 0-2 (F-7, K)
7b. Francis Azcona, 2B: 0-1 (L-8)
8a. Cassidy Brown, C: 1-1 (1B)
8b. Mitch Trees, PH-C: 1-2 (1B, K)
9. Brantley Bell, 3B: 0-2 (4-6-3 DP, 6-3)

1. Donnie Dewees, CF: 1-3 (1B, K, 6-3)
2. P. J. Higgins, DH #1: 1-3 (1B, 6-3, 6-3, CS)
3. Matt Thaiss, 1B: 0-2 (BB, 4-3, K)
4. Andrew Daniel, 3B: 0-3 (K, K, F-7)
5a. Brendon Sanger, RF: 1-2 (6-U FC, 1B)
5b. Brennon Lund, RF: 0-1 (K) 
6. Eddy Julio Martinez, LF: 1-3 (6-3, F-8, 1B)
7. Ian Rice, C: 0-2 (P-4, BB, F-7)
8a. Hutton Moyer, SS: 1-2 (2B, K, R)
8b. Connor Justus, SS: 0-1 (K)
9. Carlos Sepulveda, 2B: 1-2 (1B, L-7, RBI)
10. Alberto Mineo, DH #2: 0-2 (K, P-6)

1. Ryan Hendrix: 3.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 3 K, 4/1 GO/AO, 49 pitches (33 strikes) 
2. Tanner Rainey: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 1/3 GO/AO, 37 pitches (22 strikes) 
3. Jimmy Herget: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 1/2 GO/AO, 31 pitches (20 strikes) 

1. Dylan Cease: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 4 K, 1 HR, 1/1 GO/AO, 30 pitches (19 strikes) 
2. Thomas Hatch: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 1 K, 1 WP, 1 GIDP, 3/1 GO/AO, 27 pitches (12 strikes) 
3. Jen-Ho Tseng: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/0 GO/AO, 13 pitches (7 strikes) 
4. Justin Steele: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 3/0 GO/AO, 7 pitches (5 strikes) 
5. Jared Cheek: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HR, 1/1 GO/AO, 18 pitches (10 strikes) 



Cassidy Brown: 1-1 CS 

Ian Rice: 0-1 CS 

LF Eddy Julio Martinez - batter thrown out 7-4 attempting to stretch single into double 


WEATHER: Partly cloudy with temperatures in the 90's 


Hey AZ PHIL: Thanks as always. How does Thomas Hatch look to you? Is he getting some positive attention? Any ideas where he'll be placed in the system? With more kids seemingly being able to throw in the high 90's these days, what Cubs youngsters other than Cease have a buzz?

E-MAN: I think the fact that Thomas Hatch was moved-up from Basic Instructs to Advanced Instructs this week indicates the Cubs are putting him on the fast track for 2017. That doesn't mean he will necessarily begin the 2017 season at Myrtle Beach, but I do think he will get a good shot.

I actually like Bailey Clark (Cubs 5th round pick) better than Hatch. I have seen both of them pitch, and Clark has filthier stuff. BTW, the only reason Clark is not at Instructs is because he returned to Duke to complete his degree, but I think he's got the highest ceiling of any of the Cubs 2016 draft picks. Hatch is more-polished, but Clark has the best pure stuff. 

Based upon my own personal observations and after speaking with others in the know both inside & outside the Cubs organization, I would say that AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW, the 15 best Cubs starting pitching prospects below AA are Dylan Cease, Trevor Clifton, Oscar de la Cruz, Jose Paulino, Bailey Clark, Jose Albertos, Thomas Hatch, Bryan Hudson, Manuel Rondon, Jake Stinnett, Justin Steele, Brailyn Marquez, Ryan Kellogg, Preston Morrison, and Kyle Miller (in that order).

I believe there are four main reasons to implement the DH in the National League:

1. To protect starting pitchers from added injury liability beyond that incurred by pitching or fielding his position. The cost of starting pitching is such that it isn't worth it to risk an injury to a pitcher by having the pitcher bat and run the bases, unless he knows what he's doing (and most pitchers don't).

2. With the number of interleague games played during the MLB regular season plus the World Series, the rules should be the same in both leagues. It is unfair to have National League teams with a roster constructed without the DH have to play against American League teams who construct their roster with a DH, and it's also unfair to American League teams to not be able to use their DH when playing road games versus National League teams.

3. Adding the DH would provide a marginal increase in offense.

4. Expanding the DH to the National League would allow more veteran players to extend their careers as a DH.

Two suggestions for changes in the DH rule as it presently is constituted:

1. The DH can be used to hit for any player in the lineup. The DH does not have to replace the pitcher, so if you have a Madison Bumgarner or Jake Arrieta pitching, he can hit, and the DH can bat in place of one of the other position players (defensive-oriented catcher, slick-fielding SS, Gold Glove defender in CF, etc).

2. The DH can be moved to a defensive position or even back & forth to DH and a different player can be moved to DH or inserted into the game as the DH during the course of the game. This preserves strategy, and allows a manager to put his best defensive team on the field if he has a starting pitcher who is a good hitter. And then when the starting pitcher leaves the game, the original DH can move to a defensive position and/or a different player can replace the starting pitcher in the batting order and play defense or be the DH if the original DH moves to a defensive position.

Interesting thoughts AZP. I fully agree that they need the same rules for both leagues -- once they moved the Astros to the AL, and created two 15-team leagues, it basically forced interleague play on a daily basis. It made no sense to do that but not align the rules. Same thing for the WS -- deciding the championship with teams playing under different rules from the regular season is bizarre. It would be as if the NBA allowed 3-point shots in the Eastern Conference but not the Western. A couple reactions: - I can't think of many pitchers getting hurt due to hitting. I understand the risk, but I don't remember it happening much. - I thought the DH could already bat for anyone in the lineup?

A few have been hurt running the bases over the years. Wainwright and Chien-Ming Wang come to mind.

Both Zambrano and Prior got hurt not just from the hitting but from the running after and there's a good chance that the Prior injury was what ended his career. I personally cringe every time I see one of the Cubs pitchers running and would be happy never having to see one slide again.

Fair enough. I'm in.

I believe there are four five main reasons to implement the DH in the National League: 5. Kyle Schwarber

AFL streaming Mesa vs Salt River at 3:35pm

Len Kasper(Marquette alum...Go Warriors) tweetstorm...wise words though.

Beware of narratives. "History staring Cubs in the face" pretty much irrelevant to Contreras/Baez/Bryant/Lester. They're just trying to win. Been around big league teams enough to see what makes them tick. 100 things to worry about when game starts. Franchise history not 1 of them. I LOVE a good story. Non-fiction fanatic. But narratives are retroactive. We assign larger themes to events after they occur. Human nature. So, while there IS value to extrapolating what it all "means" to us, do not let people tell you it steers games/performances. It doesn't. Lastly the Cubs' motivation in the 9th to win wasn't "we need to avoid the tension of heading home 2-2." It was, "LET'S WIN THIS GAME BOYS!" Does this make sense? We watch & think, "If they don't win, Game 5 will be tough" But players just think about the moment & just try to win. Only AFTER the game are players confronted with the "Man, facing Cueto would have been difficult." You're not thinking that in the 8th inn

@Ken_Rosenthal Source: Qualifying offer this off-season will be $17.2M. System expected to remain in place in new CBA, with possible adjustments.


Dusty on Game 5: "Tell you the truth, I got up this AM, said my prayers like I always do, had a cup of coffee & started packing for Chicago"

Says Strasburg won't be available in NLCS

Dusty still lives in Chicago?


@MDGonzales Lester Game 1 starter, all signs point to Hendricks for Game 2 but nothing official. Zastryzny in mix if Cubs opt for 12 pitchers

jason "has jason hammel been traded yet" hammel seems to be quite undesired.

Dodgers. Rob Z smiles.

crawl says: Dusty goes to 1-7 in potential series clinching games. Then they say Dusty has been in 9 potential series clinchers. So it's some really ugly number between 7-9.

Games that His Team Could Advance

  • 1998: Loss WC tie-breaker to Cubs (0-1)
  • 2002: Beat Braves in NLDS after being down 2-1, Beat Cards in 5, then loss to Angels in 7 with 2 shots (2-3)
  • 2003: Beat Braves in NLDS in 5 but were up 2-1, loss to Marlins in 7 after being up 3-1 (3-7)
  • 2012: Loss Game 5 to Giants in NLDS...after being up 2-0 (3-10)
  • 2013: Loss WC to Pirates (3-11)

 Elimination Games

  • 1997: Swept by Marlins (0-1)
  • 1998:  Loss to Cubs in tie-breaker game (0-2)
  • 2000: Loss to Mets in NLDS 3-1 (0-3)
  • 2002: Beat Braves in Game 4 of NLDS down 2-1 and then won Game 5, loss Game 7 to Angels  (2-4)
  • 2003: Beat Braves in Game 5 of NLDS, loss to Marlins in Game 7 of NLCS (3-5)
  • 2010: Swept by Phillies in NLDS (3-6)
  • 2012: Loss Game 5 to Giants in NLDS...after being up 2-0 (3-7)
  • 2013: Loss WC to Pirates (3-8)

Rob G smiles also :)

What I thought I heard on the broadcast was that he had lost 9 clinching opportunities in a row. That would be the 3 with the Cubs against the Marlins in 2003, 3 with the Reds against the Giants in 2012, the wild-card loss to the Pirates in 2013, and the 2 clinching opportunities this week.

that seems to be it...thanks.

Ken Rosenthal has the lowdown on Javy Baez. Loved the whole piece, but especially the part where Wilken praises Maddon.

We all know the stories of how Trib and Zelll handcuffed Wilken when drafting, think he did a good job with the circumstances.

H. Simpson notwithstanding, but it isn't like 16th picks are locks anyway and there aren't a ton of guys around that area that got picked that really have done much. C. Yelich being by far the best (at 24 but out of high school so probably out of Cubs budget at the time)

VItters was unfortunate, he wanted Wieters (and you have to go the 9th or 10th pick before anyone that had any real success in J. Parker and M. Bumgarner).

The Colvin/Samardzija gambit actually worked out pretty well. Donaldson is a beast. You look from 2006-2011 and it isn't super-flashy, but a lot of decent major leaguers(LeMahieu, Samardzija, Barney, Cashner) just not a lot of stars and probably the best of the bunch never played for the Cubs (Donaldson).

I said many times since this thing got going that, "if the player makes it to the majors, its considered a success". That was before I realized what Theo really could really get accomplished. He plays at a completely different level- but made mistakes as well. Henry just missed on too many upper round prospects year-after-year. Or, traded the best ones for horse shit. At best, Hendry overall was a middle of the pack, or below, GM.

When I was in the mood to defend Hendry from the accusation that he mainly provided employment for cronies, I used to cite Wilken as a good outside hire. Later I learned that he went to the same high school, too. (I think it was Dunedin.) Whenever I see Bochy, I'm reminded that Hendry almost hired him when his term expired in San Diego, but at the last minute chose Piniella instead. The rest is history (three titles in SF and 0-6 in the postseason for the Cubbies); but if Bochy had managed the Cubs it might have saved Hendry's job for a while and there might never have been a Theo regime, or at least not as soon.

Hendry's secret plan was just to set up the pieces for Theo to take over and save the franchise. He's the real genius.

Recent comments

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  • crunch 16 hours 7 min ago (view)

    cubs trade for travis lakins for a PTBNL or cash considerations from the rsox.


  • Charlie 20 hours 46 min ago (view)

    I mean, the "overrated" criticism is always more about other people deserving of the honor being snubbed or put through more rigamarole. Jeter was definitely a great player for a long time. I just want people to remember that guys like Scott Rolen are not 60% less deserving, as the current voting system seems to indicate.


  • crunch 1 day 4 hours ago (view)

    speaking of the HOF...

    schilling had a nice bump in his 8th eligable year going from 60.9% to 70.0%.  he's probably gonna get in next year...and if not for his abrasive personality and questionable interests outside of baseball he would probably already be in.  he's good enough to be there based on performance alone.

    fellow 8th year guys bonds and clemens held steady, going up around 1% point to 60%-ish range.  they may or may not get some love entering their 9th or 10th years.


  • crunch 1 day 9 hours ago (view)

    m.ozuna signs with the braves 1/18m.

    he was expected to sign for similar pay over a number of years.  the cards must be "wtf?" about him walking away from the 17.8m qualifying offer, though.  at least they get a draft pick out of it.


  • crunch 1 day 9 hours ago (view)

    5x gold glove...and earned 0 of them.

    whatever.  hell of a hitter, and he played SS "good enough" to not embarass himself or the team.

    but yeah, overrated even if he's a no-doubt 1st ballot hall of famer...which seems like an odd thing to say even if it's true (at least in the eyes of many).


  • Charlie 1 day 9 hours ago (view)

    That's a significant boost for being the face of the Yankees. Expected, but in retrospect he wasn't that much better than plenty of people who didn't have full support for the hall (Santo comes to mind).

    *Tries to start an "over-rated" chant.*


  • crunch 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    d.jeter and l.walker (10th and final year on ballot, 76.6%) are going to the HOF.

    jeter got 99.75% of the vote...highest for a position player (griffey jr 99.32% 2016).  m.rivera got 100% last year.

    larry walker decided to dress up for his first post-election interview.  class act.


  • crunch 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    nice.  i love seeing the undrafted who still try to make a career get a shot.

    it seems he's somewhat recently hit 97mph on his fastball which helped attract some interest.

    good luck to the dude.


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 17 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have released eight players from their Dominican Academy: RHRP Donato Auguste, RHRP Marco Encarnacion, RHRP Rodrigo Garcia, RHRP Francisco Gracia, LHRP Anderson Parra, RHRP Willians Vasquez, 1B Jeinser Brete, and OF Kevin Miranda.  


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 17 hours ago (view)

    Rex Brothers has one minor league option left and Article XX-D status (so he can elect free-agency if outrighted) if he were to be added to the Cubs MLB 40-man roster at some point in 2020. 


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 17 hours ago (view)

    RHSP Max Bain (contract acquired by Cubs from Utica Unicorns of USPBL last week) minor league UPC has not yet been filed with MLB. 


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 17 hours ago (view)

    The Josh Phegley, Bryan Brickhouse, Rex Brothers, Juan Gamez, and Caleb Simpson minor league contracts have been filed with MLB, but the Tyler Olson and Jason Adam contracts are still pending.  


  • Arizona Phil 1 day 18 hours ago (view)

    The Cubs have signed LHRP Rex Brothers (ex COL, ex-ATL), RHRP Bryan Brickhouse, RHRP Juan Gamez (pitched in Mexican League in 2019), and RHRP Caleb Simpson to minor l;eague contracts, and Brothers is the only one of the four likely receive an NRI to Cubs MLB Spring Training. 


  • crunch 2 days 10 hours ago (view)


    ""There’s a lot of disrespect from people there that I don’t want to be a part of," Arenado said. "You can quote that." Arenado added, "You ask what I thought of Jeff’s quotes and I say I don’t care what people say around there. There is a lot of disrespect."

    The third baseman didn't want to elaborate on what he felt was disrespectful, but clearing the relationship between Arenado and the front office needs to be repaired."


  • crunch 2 days 11 hours ago (view)

    some good news...or bad news depending on how you feel about it...for the k.bryant trade market...

    "Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich on Monday indicated that Nolan Arenado will not be dealt prior to spring training and trade talks involving the third baseman are off for now."

    now MLB and crew need to decide whether bryant has an extra year of club control or not...still waiting...

    rangers, braves, and nats are supposedly looking at 3rd base upgrades.  cards are, too, but bryant to the cards would be a mutiny level trade decision.


  • crunch 2 days 18 hours ago (view)

    "Ben Nicholson-Smith of reports that the Marlins, Cubs, Rangers, and Brewers are "believed to be among the teams with some interest" in free agent reliever Pedro Strop.

    Nicholson-Smith on Sunday that Strop had three offers in-hand (two from NL clubs and one from an AL club) and will likely make his decision soon."