Leave the Gum, Take the Canela

Danny Canela reached base five times on a two-run home run, a two run double, a single, and two walks, Pin-Chieh Chen blasted a three-run home run and walked, Cael Brockmeyer reached base four times on two singles and two walks, stole two bases, and scored a run, Jeimer Candelario singled, walked twice, scored two runs, and drove-in another, and Starlin Castro belted a triple and an RBI double and scored a run, as the Daytona Cubs rallied to tie the Visalia Rawhide (Diamondbacks Hi-A affiliate) 9-9 on Field #6, and Jamie Westbrook hammered a three-run HR and Daniel Palka drilled a two-run HR, leading the South Bend Silver Hawks (AZ Lo-A affiliate) to a 12-3 drubbing of the Kane County Cougars (Cubs Lo-A affilate) on Field #3, in Cactus League Minor League doubleheader action this afternoon at the Under Armour Performance Center at Riverview Park in Mesa, AZ.

Bijan Rademacher reached base four times on a triple, two singles, and walk for KC in a losing cause. 
The 23-year old left-handed hitting Canela is presently assigned to the Kane County squad, but (probably because of his age and D-1 college experience) he began Minor League Camp as a catcher with the AA Tennessee squad. He was moved from catcher to 1st base during the course of Spring Training (he is a very rotund 5'10, perhaps weighing as much as 260 pounds), but the slugger was temporarily moved-up to the Daytona squad today because both Dan Vogelbach and Rock Shoulders (the D-Cubs two first-basemen) were absent.

Canela was Carlos Rodon's catcher at NC State in 2012, but then he had some undisclosed personal issues that resulted in his transferring to Lee University (an NAIA school in Tennessee) for his senior year. After he wasn't selected in the 2013 draft (and I have to ask why, because this dude has some serious HR power), he signed with the River City Rascals of the independent Frontier League where he hit a cool 360/455/582 with 12 HR and 14 doubles in 67 games. He led the league in hitting and was named the Frontier League's Rookie of the Year, before signing with the Cubs as a non-drafted free-agent (NDFA) last October. If he does indeed end up playing 1st base (and DH) at Kane County in 2014 (he is blocked by both Vogelbach and Shoulders at Daytona), Cougar fans (and Chicago Cub fans who go to Cougar games) are going to have loads of fun with this guy.

For us old-timers who remember Riverview Park in Chicago, Danny Canela playing baseball at Riverview Park in Mesa can't help but bring back memories of Dick "Two Ton" Baker and his "Laugh Your Troubles Away" Riverview Park TV commercials in the 1960's... so now it's Danny "Two-Ton" Canela?

Starlin Castro (hamstring injury rehab) played shortstop for seven innings and batted six times in the Daytona game. He flied out his first three times up, then after striking out swinging in his 4th PA in the 6th, he laced an RBI double off the right-centerfield fence in the 7th, and a one-out triple into the RF corner in the 8th. He appeared to be running the bases at full speed, showing no ill-effects from his hamstring injury. He also was solid in the field, making several fine defensive plays, including a heads-up 6-5 FC that caught a D'backs baserunner trying to take 3rd on a grounder to Castro's left. 

Since he will be a AA rotation starter, C. J. Edwards (who got the start for the Cubs in the MLB Cactus League game versus the San Diego Padres at Peoria last night) was inserted into the D-Cubs lineup to practice his bunting skills when such situations presented themselves. Edwards laid down three picture-perfect sac bunts in the bottom of the 1st, 5th, and 6th innings, but but then he struck out (bunted foul for strike three) his fourth time up in the 7th. So he was 75% successful.  

Starting for KC (although he is assigned to the Daytona squad), 21-year old South African RHP Tayler Scott (Cubs 2011 5th round pick out of Notre Dame HS in Scottsdale, AZ) had a very poor outing, allowing seven runs (all earned) on five hits (including two triples and a HR) and five walks in just three innings of work (81 pitches - only 40 strikes). RHP Scott Frazier (Cubs 2013 6th round pick out of Pepperdine University) worked the 8th inning for the Cougars and could not find the strike zone, allowing two runs on three walks and an HBP in just 2/3 of inning (26 pitches - only nine strikes). There are those in the Cubs organization who believe the 6'5 235 Frazier (known by some as as "Sasquatch") has the best pure stuff in the system, but he just could not find home plate today.   

24-year old Dominican RHP Felix Pena got the start for Daytona, working 4.2 IP and allowing two runs (earned) on three hits and a walk. He also struck out seven and got a ton of ground balls (6/1 GO/FO), at one point retiring 12 South Bend hitters in a row before tiring in the 5th. Signed by the Cubs five years ago, it's taken Pena a while to put things together, but he has been one of the surprises of 2014 Minor League Camp (so far). On the other side of the coin was 24-year old RHP Zack Godley (Cubs 2013 10th round pick out of the U. of Tennessee), who followed Pena to the hill and was absolutely crushed, allowing seven runs on eight hits (including three triples and two doubles) in 1.1 IP.   

Here are the abridged box scores from the two minor league games played at Riverview Park today (Cubs players only):  

FIELD #3:

KANE COUNTY LINEUP:
1. Danny Lockhart, 2B: 1-4 (4-3, K, 1B, HBP, 5-4 FC, R, PO)
2. Carlos Panalver, SS: 1-5 (2B, K, 6-3, L-8, F-8, R, SB)
3. Kevin Brown, DH: 1-4 (L-7, 5-3, 4-3, 3B, BB, 2 RBI)
4. Jacob Rogers, 1B: 0-4 (BB, K, F-8, K, F-7)
5. Giuseppe Papaccio, RF: 1-4 (1B, F-8, 5-3, K, RBI)
6. Bijan Rademacher, LF: 3-3 (BB, 1B, 1B, 3B, SB)
7a. Mark Malave, C: 0-2 (K, K)
7b. Will Remillard, C: 0-2 (6-4 FC, 3-U)
8. Jordan Hankins, 3B: 0-3 (6-3, BB, F-8, 5-3)
9. Charcer Burks, CF: 1-3 (F-8, F-8, 1B, BB, R)  

KANE COUNTY PITCHERS:
1. Tayler Scott: 3.0 IP, 5 H, 7 R (7 ER), 5 BB, 2 K, 1 HR, 2/5 GO/FO, 81 pitches (40 strikes)
2. James Pugliese: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 3 K, 2/1 GO/FO, 32 pitches (23 strikes)
3. Michael Wagner: 2.0 IP, 5 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 6 K, 1 HR, 1 WP, 55 pitches (36 strikes)
4. Scott Frazier: 0.2 IP, 0 H, 2 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, 1 HBP, 1/1 GO/FO, 26 pitches (9 strikes)
5. Reinier Roibal: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 11 pitches (6 strikes)

KANE COUNTY ERRORS: 1
SS Carlos Penalver - E-6 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely) 

KANE COUNTY CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Mark Malave: 0-1 CS

FIELD #6:

DAYTONA LINEUP:
X-1. Starlin Castro, SS-DH: 2-6 (F-8, F-9, F-8, K, 2B, 3B, R, RBI)
NOTE: Castro hit 3rd in bottom of the 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 6th innings, and 2nd in the bottom of the 7th & 8th innings) 
X-2. C. J. Edwards, DH #2: 0-1 (1-4 SH, 1-4 SH, 2-4 SH, K)
NOTE: Edwards hit 2nd in the bottom of the 1st, 5th, and 6th innings, and 4th in the bottom of the 7th inning) 
1a. Tim Saunders, DH #1: 1-3 (HBP, K, L-8, 1B, 2 R) 
1b. Marco Hernandez, SS: 0-1 (F-9)
2. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 1-3 (1B, F-7, BB, BB, F-8, 2 R, RBI)
3. Danny Canela, 1B: 4-4 (1B, BB, HR, 2B, BB, R, 4 RBI, CS)
4. Yasiel Balaguert, RF: 1-5 (F-8, F-7, 1B, F-9, 4-6-3 DP, CS)
5. Jacob Hannemann, CF: 1-4 (F-7, 1B, K, 5-3)
6. Gioskar Amaya, 2B: 2-4 (1B, F-8, 1B, K, R)
7. Cael Brockmeyer, C: 2-2 (1B, BB, 1B, BB, R, 2 SB)
8. Pin-Chieh Chen, LF: 1-3 (HR, BB, 3-1, K, R, 3 RBI)
9a. SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIRST THREE TIMES THRU BATTING ORDER
9b. Justin Marra, DH #3: 0-0 (BB)

DAYTONA PITCHERS:
1. Felix Pena: 4.2 IP, 3 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 7 K, 6/1 GO/FO, 60 pitches (38 strikes)
2. Zach Godley: 1.1 IP, 8 H, 7 R (7 ER), 0 BB, 1 K, 2/1 GO/FO, 38 pitches (27 strikes)
3. Josh Davis: 1.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K, 1 WP, 1/4 GO/FO, 22 pitches (15 strikes)
4. Andrew McKirahan: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 2/1 GO/FO, 34 pitches (24 strikes)

DAYTONA ERRORS: NONE

DAYTONA CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Cael Brockmeyer: 0-2 CS  

Comments

d.canela's issues at NCSU weren't drug/alcohol or attitude related, fwiw. he was running into a bit of a roadblock in his career going into 2013 with brett austin slated to take a majority of the C duties and canela seeing more time as a bat-only DH/backup catcher player. he also had conditioning issues with his weight, though it's obvious he didn't miss much upper body gym time. unfortunately, he switched schools rather late in a baseball sense (which most likely limited his choices of transfer schools) and going to Lee University (out of NCAA Division 1 competition) didn't exactly help his draft stock. he went to indie ball and the cubs snagged him. power and a good eye...never was much of a defensive C, though he's got experience and a decent arm (unfortunately his bulk didn't translate well into getting good throws with the arm coming out of the crouch)...1st/DH type most likely going forward...loves the game...not lazy even with conditioning/weight issues plaguing him for quite a while.

Best Godfather/Baseball reference EVER az Phil! Bravo.

Olt and Kalish on the team

Are the Cubs the youngest team in the majors?

Last year it was 5) Cards 4) Pirates 3)Marlins 2)Braves 1) Astros Guessing still Astros

so you're really good or really bad if you're young, intriguing...

Cubs have to be up there this year I'd think, old man Soriano and DeJesus gone. Only over 30's I see are Jose Veras and John Baker with a couple at age 30 (Jackson, Schierholtz, Villanueva). Figure though Marlins and Astros are gonna stay near the top.

This whole thing is reminding me a bit of the Blackhawks when the younger Wirtz started fixing the badness that was old man Wirtz. They built a good core of young players. I hope that happens here. It's looking good so far. I'm actually interested in this team. I can root for these guys cuz they're coming up through the system, or they are young enough that if they're good they should be around awhile (Olt, Rizzo). Winning a division through free agency is dead, if it ever was really alive. All the good young players are getting extended, and Miguel Cabrera just got sewn up for two more years. Is Eloy ready yet? Let's bring him up!

w.wright gives up back to back homers in the top 9th...both to lefties.

no doubters, fast balls crushed. ugh Neal Ramirez came in and looked good to close

Ryan Roberts opts out of his deal with Cubs per Heyman. I don't think anyone expected him to get the last roster spot once Bonafiacio came on board and Olt wasn't going to AAA. https://twitter.com/JonHeymanCBS/status/44925...

the cubs willingness to play boni at SS opens up an opportunity to trade d.barney at some point (especially once castro proves his health). valbuena may not set the world on fire, but i wouldn't object to him taking over a majority of play at 2nd.

I'm going to miss the Donnie Murphy era.

I've got a bobble head to sell you...cheap.

I'll take two.

Az. Phil----Soler has not played in a minor league since 3/17---any word on what's going on?

CARMELO: Jorge Soler is on Limited Activity Only status, but he did take BP with the Tennessee squad Thursday morning. I don't know the nature of his injury or why he hasn't been able to play in games. 

 

Nats release Mike Fontenot. Reed Johnson is the only s-crappy player left in the league (RJ made the marlins 25 man roster).

He's my second-favorite recent Cub middle infielder whose last name ended in 'OT'.

http://i.imgur.com/HqvydQK.jpg also, rays sign fontenot to a minor league deal.

Neifi Perot?

BP mention on a bunch of relievers, last on the commentary was Jose Veras... http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php...
Jose Veras, Cubs Second verse same as the first, with a slight alteration. Relievers are the ultimate wild card. The stop being effective or get hurt for odd reasons. Billy Koch thought that he had tendrils growing out of his fingertips once and well, that was that for his baseball career. Let’s take intellectual leaps and say Kimbrel isn’t saving as many games for whatever reason as he had in the past. That opens the door up quite a bit for the field and while Veras does play for a rebuilding squad I think it will also be a squad that will look to shop him heavily at the trade deadline. Once again, I believe in Veras’ ability, and I think he would look quite nice in high leverage situations for some team that’s suddenly found itself in a playoff chase sans a capital C closer. Enter Veras and his healthy strikeout rate and improving command. I think he'll do quite well as The Guy, wherever he is needed. —Mauricio Rubio

from the department of "there are teams worse off than the cubs"... "Astros manager Bo Porter plans to hit Jose Altuve cleanup against right-handers this season."

Twitterverse says Reggie Golden has been released.

Heading to the showers.

(noticed)

(recognized)

Mahalo

(Na'u ka hau'oli)

(Na'u ka hau'oli)

go home haole!

Wow.

new drug policy

80/162/lifetime ban

no playoffs or playoff share

more urine testing

player can try and prove PED was taken accidentally or not intended to enhance performance during arbitration process

League will provide safe supplements throughout the year

If you can cash in on a big contract, then I think it would probably be worth getting caught once.

This hurts teams much more (which I'm personally in favor of). Does anyone know if teams can legally institute their own in-house drug testing?

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  • crunch 11 hours 55 min ago (view)

    minor league baseball has to provide housing for minor leaguers starting 2022 (paid for by MLB parent clubs).  this is HUGE news and will make it possible for guys to stick around longer without having to quit the game just to earn a basic living.  for minor league players working in expensive housing markets this is a life saver.

    activist players from the OAK and LAA minor league teams as well as minor league player labor advocacy organizations were a huge part of making this happen.  good work.

     

  • bradsbeard 15 hours 37 min ago (view)

    Did you have any occasion to observe Pedro Ramirez? Not sure if he got into any games or not (now that I think of it, you wrote up at least one game he played in). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 20 hours 51 min ago (view)

    azbobbop: Certainly LHSPs Drew Gray and Luke Little have emerged as legit significant high-end SP prospects. RHSP Luis Devers has probably displaced Koen Moreno as the top "pitchability" SP prospect in the lower levels of the Cubs system. Tyler Schlaffer (another "pitchability" guy) also had an impressive Instructs, although Devers is a better SP prospect because he has a solid three-pitch mix and knows how to use it, while Schlaffer has just the 92-94 FB & CV (although both are solid offerngs) and isn't as polished as Devers is.

     

  • Hagsag 1 day 3 hours ago (view)

    This is the first time I have heard about the four month program in November. 

     

  • azbobbop 1 day 9 hours ago (view)

    Phil, now that instructional scare finished, which players impressed you the most and who are disappointments.

     

  • tim815 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    Cool. Should help his trade value if the bat plays.

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    TIM: Peter Matt looks very comfortable at 3B. He is a classic "four-corner" guy (1B-3B-LF-RF). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    KKvG: I strongly suspect Koen Moreno's outing was more about getting out on the mound and throwing in a game than anything. He did get several swings & misses from his CH (which is a plus-pitch), and he uses his low 90's FB to set-up the CH.

    I didn't see any breaking balls, although it's possible I might have mistaken a CH for one.

    Koen Moreno is what scouts call a "pitchability" guy. Nothing wrong with that, BTW. MLB starting rotations are full of pitchers like that.  

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 15 hours ago (view)

    Childersb3: Not much bat speed. Just "lug-power." I actually like Matt Mervis better. 

     

  • Hagsag 1 day 17 hours ago (view)

    Thanks wrigley rat.

     

  • Wrigley Rat 1 day 19 hours ago (view)

    HAGSAG - Not Phil, but I think this info was from him in the past:

    RHP/OF (signed as a two-way player - seems to be sticking with hitting for now), R/R, 5'11 180, Age 18, SPAIN

     

  • Childersb3 1 day 22 hours ago (view)

    AzP,

    Does Bryce Ball have any real bat speed, or is he just a big guy that waves at the ball and makes contact 1of5 times?

     

  • Hagsag 2 days 3 hours ago (view)

    Phil, tell me about Frank Fernandez.

     

  • tim815 2 days 10 hours ago (view)

    If Matt is "not horrible" at third, that could be useful.

     

  • crunch 3 days 10 hours ago (view)

    bonds got a standing-O after being introduced between innings at LAD @ SF.

    as he sat down, dude looked extremely genuinely happy to hear the park errupt in cheers for him again.

    it's not his first time back, nor his first set of cheers, but the park is packed and loud.

     

  • Cubster 4 days 10 hours ago (view)

    Jed's GM search wrapping up, and the winner is: (Athletic write up): 37 yr old "Carter Hawkins, Cleveland assistant general manager, deals with all aspects of baseball operations in a front office admired for its stability, creativity in turning over the roster and ability to keep churning out pitchers.