I-Cubs and Smokies Pound RockHounds and Sounds at Fitch Park

Ian Rice hammered an RBI double and a single and scored a run, Jesse Hodges belted an RBI triple and a single and scored a run, Tyler Pearson slugged a solo home run, and five pitchers combined to toss a shutout, as the Tennessee Smokies (Cubs AA affiliate) blanked the Midland RockHounds (AA affiliate of the Oakland Athletics) 5-0 on Field #3, and David Bote ripped an RBI triple and two singles, stole a base, and scored two runs, Charcer Burks drilled a triple and an RBI single, walked, stole a base, and scored a run, Jason Vosler singled, doubled, stole a base, and scored two runs, and Brandon Cummins (recently acquired from the Southern Illinois Miners of the Frontier League) singled twice, stole two bases, scored a run, and drove-in another, leading the Iowa Cubs (AAA affiliate of the Chicago Cubs) to a 9-5 victory over the Nashville Sounds (A's AAA affiliate) on Field #4, in Cactus League Minor League game action Wednesday afternoon at the Lew Wolff Training Complex at Fitch Park in Mesa, AZ. 

The game on Field #4 was called after eight innings of play.

The A's started two of their top pitching prospects in the games, with RHSP Jharel Cotton getting the start for Nashville and RHSP Daniel Gossett the SP for Midland. Both pitchers were sent down to Minor League Camp by the A's specifically to pitch in the two games against the Cubs AA/AAA affiliates, and they are the type of high-end MLB-ready (or near-ready) arms the Cubs might target in a potential trade involving Cubs excess position-player prospects somewhere down the line. Cotton was acquired from the Dodgers as part of the Rich Hill trade last July and led the PCL in strikeouts, WHIP, and OppBA in 2016, and Gossett was the A's 2nd round draft pick out of Clemson in 2014.

As is typical for minor league Spring Training games, a few Cubs position-players were moved up to higher levels for the two games. 

Also, while Zach Hedges is assigned to the Tennessee squad at Minor League Camp, he was the starting pitcher for Iowa, and Adbert Alzolay is assigned to the Myrtle Beach squad at Minor League Camp, but he was the starting pitcher for Tennessee. (Alzolay's fastball was sitting at 95, BTW). All of the other Cubs pitchers who worked in the games pitched for their assigned squads (levels), including Jake Stinnett, who "piggy-backed" with Alzolay in the AA game but actually threw more innings and six less pitches than Alzolay.

Cubs pitchers being stretched out as starters (Alzolay, Stinnett, and Hedges) were limited to three innings or 45-50 pitches (whichever came first).  

RHP Tyler Skulina (Cubs 2013 4th round draft pick - Kent State) is being moved to the bullpen in 2017. (He was a SP at AA Tennessee last season). He threw a scoreless inning in the AAA game on Field #4 (but only 50% strikes).

Here are the abridged box scores from the two games (Cubs players only):


FIELD #3

TENNESSEE LINEUP:
1a. Jeffrey Baez, RF: 1-3 (6-3,  2B, K, R)
1b. Robert Garcia, RF: 0-2 (K, K)  
2a. Daniel Spingola, DH #1: 1-4 (1-3, E-3, 1B, F-8, R, SB)
2b. Sam Tidaback, PH: 0-1 (K)
3. Eddy Julio Martinez, LF: 0-3 (F-8, L-9, F-9, BB, CS)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIFTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
4a. Ian Rice, C: 2-3 (1B, 2B, F-9, R, RBI)
4b. Tyler Pearson, C: 1-2 (HR, P-3, R, RBI)
5. Andrew Ely, SS: 0-4 (F-8, P-5, F-7, K)
6. Jesse Hodges, 3B: 2-4 (3B, L-4, K, 1B, R, RBI)
7a. Franklin Tineo, DH #2: 0-1 (BB, F-7)
7b. Rafael Narea, 2B: 1-1 (BB, 1B, PO)
8. Alberto Mineo, 1B: 1-3 (3-U, F-8, 2B, RBI)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
9. Vimael Machin, 2B-DH: 2-3 (1B, 1B, K)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
10. Roberto Caro, CF: 0-3 (L-7, K, F-8)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FOURTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER

TENNESSEE PITCHERS:
1. Adbert Alzolay: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HBP, 2/2 GO/AO, 46 pitches (28 strikes)
2. Jake Stinnett: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 0 K, 4/4 GO/AO, 40 pitches (24 strikes)
3. Jeremy Null: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 2/3 GO/AO, 24 pitches (16 strikes)
4. Craig Brooks: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K, 0/1 GO/AO, 27 pitches (17 strikes)
5. Ryan McNeil: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GO/AO, 16 pitches (12 strikes)

TENNESSEE ERRORS: 2
1. LF Eddy Julio Martinez : E-7 (dropped fly ball allowing batter to reach base safely)
2. 3B Jesse Hodges: E-5 (errant throw allowed batter to reach base safely) 

TENNESSEE CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Ian Rice: 1-1 CS

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

FIELD #4

IOWA LINEUP:
1. David Bote, DH-SS: 3-5 (6-3, 1B, F-9, 3B, 1B, 2 R, RBI)
2a. Stephen Bruno, 2B: 0-3 (F-9, F-8, K)
2b. Trent Giambrone, 2B: 1-2 (1B, K, R, RBI, SB)
3. Trey Martin, CF-RF: 2-5 (P-3, 3-1, 1B, 1B, F-8, RBI, CS)
4. Charcer Burks, LF: 2-3 (3B, 1B, 5-4-3 DP, BB, R, RBI, 2 SB)
NOTE: SLOT WAS SKIPPED FIFTH TIME THRU BATTING ORDER
5a. Yasiel Balaguert, 1B: 0-3 (P-3, F-7, 6-3)
5b. Kevin Zamudio, 1B-3B: 0-2 (K, K)
6a. Jason Vosler, 3B: 2-4 (1B, P-4, F-9, 2B, 2 R, SB)
6b. Marcus Mastrobuoni, PH-1B: 0-1 (E-5, R)
7a. Kwang-Min Kwon, RF: 0-3 (K, 1-3, F-7)
7b. Brandon Cummins, CF: 2-2 (1B, 1B, R, RBI, 2 SB)
8a. Erick Castillo, C: 2-2 (1B, 1B, RBI)
8b. Jhonny Pereda, C: 1-2 (K, 1B)
9a. Carlos Penalver, SS: 1-2 (4-3, 1B)
9b. Richard Nunez, PH-DH: 0-2 (E-5, K, F-9 SF-DP, R, RBI)

IOWA PITCHERS:
1. Zach Hedges: 2.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 3 K, 1 BALK, 1 PO, 1/3 GO/AO, 48 pitches (27 strikes)
2. Andury Acevedo: 0.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, 0/1 GO/AO, 29 pitches (13 strikes)
3. Tyler Skulina: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO, 22 pitches (11 strikes)
4. David Garner: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 1/1 GO/AO, 16 pitches (10 strikes)
5. Gerardo Concepcion: 2.0 IP. 1 H, 1 R (1 ER), 3 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 2/3 GO/AO, 40 pitches (18 strikes)
6. Nick Sarianides: 1.0 IP, 1 H, 2 R (2 ER), 1 BB, 3 K, 1 HR, 20 pitches (10 strikes)

IOWA ERRORS: NONE

IOWA CATCHERS DEFENSE:
Jhonny Pereda: 0-1 CS

ATTENDANCE: 48

WEATHER: Mostly sunny with temperatures in the 80's 

Comments

Phil, when do you think the minor league cuts will occur?

HAGSAG: I wouldn't expect the big cut (batch release) at Minor League Camp until the last week of March, although there will probably be one cut here or a couple there in the interim.

seattle jumps out to an early lead in the "baseball is back" weird humor commercials for 2017... https://streamable.com/2iipp

Is Zach Hedges going by Trey now?

BRADSBEARD: Right after they were drafted, for some unknown reason I periodically would confuse the names "Zach Hedges" and "Trey Masek" (even though they don't look alike or even have similar pitching styles). Masek is long-gone, but still every now & then I will write "Trey Hedges" when I mean "Zach Hedges." It's a programming glitch in my brain, and our Admin here at TCR is working on fixing it if it doesn't cost too much. Personally, I blame Drupal.

Ha! It's understandable when you are trying to keep a few hundred or so players straight. I sometimes struggle with Zach Hedges and Jesse Hodges myself.

It's trumps fault.

j.fernandez has been confirmed as the driver of the boat...he was intoxicated and piloting at 65mph at the time of the crash

Sigh. Young men do stupid things. Very sad.

182.1ip - 149h - 55bb - 253K ...as a 23 year old animated personality. great backstory. crazy that chapter has closed on baseball history.

White Sox fans lone highlight for 2017 http://chicago.suntimes.com/sports/ken-harrel...

I look forward to hearing, "He gone."

Recent comments

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  • crunch 16 hours 37 min ago (view)

    don't worry, i'm sure even though he was spared from cuts there's some hardship he's being tortured with that he has to unfairly overcome.  #coreystrong #onthecross #yolo #swag #kony2012

     

  • crunch 16 hours 38 min ago (view)

    there's no way a system like that or something similar to that would work.

    "oh hi." - green bay packers

    *shoves out of way*

    like i said, there's no way that would work.

     

  • Hagsag 19 hours 34 min ago (view)

    Corey Black still has a job.

     

  • Charlie 19 hours 42 min ago (view)

    I am ready for MLB owners to give it a f***ing rest. I don't have any outrage to spare on them.

    If they can't afford this crisis, maybe they can surrender franchise rights to the players, grounds crew, concession employees, etc., and MLB teams can be employee owned.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 23 hours 55 min ago (view)

    Couldn't have said it better myself, unfortunately.

     

  • JustSayin' 1 day 8 hours ago (view)

    These players weren't cut/released; laid off is more like it. Fifty-two minor leaguers let go before any real games played, in two waves. The draft will be five rounds this year, not forty.  This is industrial downsizing, anticipating no traditional season this year and capitulation to MLB demands for a much smaller minor league system in 2021.  Next year or 2022 could also see a labor stoppage in the big leagues, over what promises to be a very tough CBA negotiation.  The game will not be what it used to be after this.

     

  • crunch 1 day 12 hours ago (view)

    i don't blame the ownership/font office for doing what they did with bryant.  it was just kinda bad timing that bryant was the client that boras was finally "i'm sick of this" over.  the cubs were warned that boras was going to make a stand and it dragged on so long there has to be some kind of toll on the boras/cubs relationship.

     

  • bigsky33 1 day 12 hours ago (view)

    Hi Phil, yes, hoping for an extended AZ Fall League.  Do you think there will be more cuts?  De La Cruz was the only big sureprise to me. I thought he had some upside. 

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    It'll be more over when Kris leaves. Or whenever the same thing happens to another of his clients.

    He isn't wrong though...

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    Presuming there is no traditional minor league season in 2020, expect an expanded Arizona Fall League (with potentially a new "Florida Fall League" as well) for the best prospects and expanded post-season instructs for other minor leaguers (all TBA). 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    My understanding is that the other two Cubs minor leaguers who are to be released are the two post-2019 Article XX-B MLB free-agents who signed 2020 minor league contracts, Brandon Morrow and Jason Kipnis. The Cubs will then supposedly re-sign them to new minor league contracts without the $100K retention bonus and 6/1 opt-out. 

     

  • Arizona Phil 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    CRUNCH: Agreed. Not counting the "4-A" guys, Oscar de la Cruz is the one legit MLB prospect on the list.  

     

  • crunch 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    aww...de la cruz had some decent looking spring outings (though late inning spring work isn't exactly challenging).  the years of injuries insanely slowed his progression.  totally wouldn't mind seeing him return in 2021 if the team would still be on his radar after getting cut at a time like this.

     

  • crunch 1 day 16 hours ago (view)

    that whole "kris bryant thing" is over...but it's never going to be over as long as this ownership group and boras is around.

    boras could have focused this on 29 other teams, especially the more vocal ones because the cubs have been mostly silent.  the cubs aren't the only team out there paying off "creatively financed" loans, either.

    he chose the cubs.

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    Not looking forward to seeing that list. Hate to see it when a guy you've invested any sort of energy in is given up on.

     

  • Cubster 1 day 21 hours ago (view)

    Chi Tribune today. Boras picks, and focused on the Ricketts. 

    Headline writer, fun job: Agent won’t let Cubs get away Scott-free Matt York/AP and Paul Sullivan.

    Boras told his players “the game can not be played without you” and asked them to share the concept with teammates and opposing players when “MLB requests further concessions or deferral of salaries” during negotiations.