Lester Throws in Intrasquad Game at Riverview
John Andreoli and Ryan Dent slugged solo home runs and Rubi Silva drilled a two-run single, leading the Iowa Cubs to a 4-3 victory over the Tennessee Smokies in a five-inning Spring Training minor league intrasquad game played on Field #1 at Mesa CubTown at Riverview Park this morning.
Victor Caratini belted a two-run double and drew a walk and Kevin Brown singled, doubled, and scored a run for the Smokies.
Jon Lester got the start for the I-Cubs, and threw 84 pitches (62 strikes) while facing 20 hitters. He allowed eight hits (two doubles, a triple, and five singles) and no walks (but two wild pitches), and he struck out four (two looking and two swinging), with a 1/6 GO/FO. Lester threw 81 pitches through four innings and and it looked like his day might be over, but then he went back out to the mound and faced one batter (Jeffrey Baez) in the top of the 5th, who rifled a triple on an 0-2 pitch. At that point, Lester was relieved.
Lester looked VERY hittable today as the young Smokies hitters consistently squared his offerings up and made lots of hard contact. If the Cubs want to get Lester another minor league start before he faces MLB hitters, they could put him on the 15-day DL retroactive to last Friday (nine days prior to MLB Opening Day being the furthest back a DL stint can be backdated during Spring Training), and maybe have him start a minor league game this coming Sunday (the last day of Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games), and then he would be eligible to be reinstated from the DL on Saturday April 11th. (NOTE: MLB Cactus League and Grapefruit League Spring Training games are considered "official" games, so players on the DL cannot play in these games, and a DL stint cannot be backdated past the last time the player appeared in an official MLB Spring Training game; but pitching or playing in a minor league Spring Training game or in an intrasquad game does not affect DL eligiblity as far as backdating the DL stint is concerned, and a player on the DL can play in a minor league Spring Training game and/or in an intrasquad game without restriction).
Despite being sent down by the Cubs on Monday, Javy Baez, Kris Bryant, and Addison Russell have yet to take the field at Minor League Camp. None of the three played in the Futures Game last night at Sloan Park (and the Cubs sure could have used them, too), none of the three participated in work-outs (fielding practice, baserunning drills, and BP) with the Iowa squad this morning, and none of the three played in the Lester intrasquad game (and they were not on the bench, either). So it's very possible that Baez, Bryant, and Russell are still with the big club, despite being technically on the Iowa roster.
The game was called with two outs in the top of the 5th inning.
Here is the box score from this morning's intrasquad game:
1. Albert Almora, DH: 2-3 (1B, 1B, L-5, R)
2. Jeffrey Baez, CF: 1-3 (K, P-3, 3B, R)
3. Victor Caratini, C: 1-2 (E-5, 2B, BB, 2 RBI)
4. Jeimer Candelario, 3B: 0-3 (F-8, K, 4-6-3 DP)
5. Bijan Rademacher, RF: 0-2 (4-3, F-7)
6. Ben Carhart, 2B: 0-2 (F-9, K)
7, Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-2 (L-8, 1B)
8. Dustin Geiger, 1B: 1-2 (K, 1B)
9. Kevin Brown, LF: 2-2 (2B, 1B, R)
X. David Ross, C: 1-4 (5-3, K, P-5, 1B, R)
NOTE: Ross batted 2nd in the bottom of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th innings
1. John Andreoli, CF: 2-2 (HR, 2B, R, RBI)
2. Mike Baxter, 1B: 0-2 (4-3, K)
3. Kyle Schwarber, DH #1: 0-2 (3-U, K)
4. Dan Vogelbach, DH #2: 0-2 (K, K)
5. Jae-Hoon Ha, LF: 2-2 (1B, 2B, R)
6. Rubi Silva, RF: 1-2 (6-3 FC, 1B, 2 RBI)
7. Chris Valaika, SS: 0-1 (BB, F-8)
8. Stephen Bruno, 2B: 0-1 (6-3)
9. Ryan Dent, 3B: 1-1 (HR, R, RBI)
Felix Pena; 4.0 IP, 7 H, 4 R (4 ER), 1 BB, 5 K, 2 HR, 5/2 GO/FO, 75 pitches (50 strikes)
1. Jon Lester: 4.0 IP, 8 H, 3 R (3 ER), 0 BB, 4 K, 2 WP, 1/6 GO/FO, 84 pitches (62 strikes)
2. Michael Wagner: 0.2, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 1/0 GO/FO, 7 pitches (5 strikes)
TENNESSEE ERRORS: NONE
IOWA ERRORS: 1
3B Ryan Dent - E-5 (throwing error allowed batter to reach base safely)
WEATHER: Sunny & breezy with temperatures in the 90's
Dolorous Jon Lester 1 hour 54 min ago (view)
Agreed on every point. I think Jed is trying to create "his" team, a fully separate entity than Theo. Probably targeting 2023 or 2024 to return to actual contention.
He absolutely shouldn't have aired that out. He ends up looking like the bad guy. This is a good way to burn those bridges.
crunch 2 hours 23 min ago (view)
jed shouldn't have aired things out so blatently, even if true.
"I don't know why guys didn't want to sign. I don't know why guys didn't want to even counteroffer, oftentimes. Every one of these guys would say they wanted to stay in Chicago, 'we wanted to be a Cub,' but then we would sit down and do negotiations, that wasn't how they acted."
...dude, no. keep that to yourself.
Dolorous Jon Lester 2 hours 35 min ago (view)
After the feel-good videos and goodbyes, Jed decided to say the players didn't seem to want to negotiate and place blame at their feet. Rizzo responded today, basically saying "wtf man, shut up, that's a lie."
I haven't really blamed Jed for much of this as I feel mgmt forced his hand but this... definitely a misstep Jed. And it also makes me wonder, the next core, if they don't want to sign below market extensions, are we gonna see a similar tear down?
crunch 19 hours 44 min ago (view)
yeah. i think it would have worked better if they weren't local boys. better sell on having a built in "friend" in a new, far away place. still not a bad move for an incentive, though...
Dolorous Jon Lester 21 hours 13 min ago (view)
Was clearly just a signing as an incentive to sign his brother
crunch 23 hours 35 min ago (view)
david can go ahead and not sign with the cubs if he wishes.
there is absolutely nothing about his game that looks like he could even play A-ball. his low-division college game is weak and his summer league wood bat game is abysmal.
Wrigley Rat 1 day 15 min ago (view)
Grand Canyon University's pitching staff got a big boost with recent Phoenix Alhambra High School ace Daniel Avitia deciding not to sign with the Chicago Cubs and, instead, honoring his letter of intent to the NCAA Division I school."
Mostly, they didn't give me the money I wanted," said Avitia, who was asking for $300,000. "The best position for me is to go to GCU and get in the top rounds (after his junior season)." Avitia said that the Cubs wouldn't go any higher than $125,000 in negotiations.
Eric S 1 day 2 hours ago (view)
Edwin took the L today in team USA's extra inning loss to Japan - should be able to help the Cubs efforts to secure a high draft pick soon.
Arizona Phil 1 day 5 hours ago (view)
Even though the MLB Trade Deadline has passed, Cubs minor leaguers with MLB experience like RHSP Joe Biagini, LHRP Tony Cingrani, RHRP Ryan Meisinger, OF Ian Miller, and RHSP Adrian Sampson can still be traded up until one week prior to the scheduled conclusion of the MLB reegular season, and I would expect each of them to get some interest from contending teams prior to the August 31 midnight post-season roster eligibilty deadline.
cubbies.4ever 1 day 17 hours ago (view)
Still haven't seen/heard if Cubs signed 19th rd Daniel Avitia, the last of the unsigned or declined.
crunch 1 day 18 hours ago (view)
imagine he'll go into indie ball somewhere and hope he doesn't end up like matt harrington.
Sonicwind75 1 day 18 hours ago (view)
So is Kumar going "pro" by taking a KBO contract next season or something like that or does he just work out for a year? Not sure what the rules are for a player in his situation.
Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 21 hours ago (view)
Good. Suck it Mets
crunch 1 day 22 hours ago (view)
mets fail to sign k.rocker.
at the time it was considered a hell of a pick when he fell so far (11th pick). he was considered a top-5 pick for most of the year, #1 for a chunk of it. his medicals (elbow) gave the mets pause offering him slot value. his agent, boras, says he's healthy.
he will not return to vandy and will go "pro"...he returns to the draft next year and the mets get a compensation 11th pick in round 1 next season.
crunch 1 day 23 hours ago (view)
rizzo, baez, and bryant all homered in their 1st game with their new team.
Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 23 hours ago (view)
Winning very much to a backseat to profits. I would imagine it always kinda was that way, but it became very obvious after the title. I think when ownership saw Darvish struggle year one, that was that, no more free agent spending. And never adjusted after it became clear Darvish was back starting midway through year two.