Cubs Are the Real Power at Riverview
Rafelin Lorenzo drilled an RBI triple and a double and scored two runs, Fidel Mejia belted an RBI triple and a double and scored one run, Levi Jordan cracked an RBI triple and a single and scored a run, and six pitchers combined on a two-hitter, leading the South Bend Cubs (Lo-A affiliate of the Chicago Cubs) to a 6-1 victory over the West Virginia Power (Seattle Mariners Lo-A affiliate) in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training game action Thursday night on Field #1 at the Riverview Baseball Complex in Mesa, AZ.
Although they were pitching for South Bend, it was actually a Eugene/Mesa "bullpen day" on Field #1, with six relievers from the Eugene/Mesa squad called upon to provide some "two-hit relief" for the SB-Cubs pen.
Meanwhile, Thursday night's offensive heroes Rafelin Lorenzo and Fidel Mejia have been two of the pleasant surprises at Cubs Minor League Camp.
Lorenzo was selected by the Cubs in the AAA Phase of last December's Rule 5 Draft from the Pittsburgh Pirates in what appeared to be just an organizational depth transaction, but it turns out he is a really good receiver with a plus-arm and he has some XBH power at the plate as well. He showed enough at Minor League Camp that he beat-out Alexander Guerra, Jonathan Soto, and Henderson Perez for the #1 catching job at South Bend, and he actually probably could have been the #1 catcher at Myrtle Beach or maybe even at Tennessee if it wasn't for a guy named Miguel Amaya at Myrtle Beach and P. J. Higgins and Jhonny Pereda at Tennessee. Kudos to the Cubs Pro Scouting Dept.
Fidel Mejia was leading (and may still be leading, I don't know) Cubs Minor League Camp in HR and XBH and (apparently) has won the starting 3B job at South Bend, even though he spent the last two seasons in the AZL and has yet to see Eugene. The 20-year old switch-hitter obviously put on some muscle during the off-season and now has pop from both sides of the plate (he hit a HR over the CF Batter's Eye on Riverview Field #5 last week), and he has worked hard to make himself into a decent-enough third-baseman that he should be able to stay at the hot corner as he advances through the Cubs system, although he can also play 1B and even a bit of 2B as well.
Meanwhile, the jury is still out on whether Cole Roederer will open the 2019 season at South Bend or at Extended Spring Training. Sometimes he looks great, and other times (like in Thursday night's game) he doesn't. So he is squarely "on the bubble," and it could go either way. (I guess we'll find out shortly).
Here is the abridged box score from the game (Cubs players only):
SOUTH BEND LINEUP:
1. D. J. Artis, LF: 1-3 (1-U, K, BB, 1B, R, SB)
2. Levi Jordan, 2B: 2-4 (6-3, 1B, 4-3 DP, 3B, R, RBI)
3. Fidel Mejia, 3B: 2-4 (2B, K, 4-3, 3B, R, RBI)
4. Jonathan Sierra, RF: 0-4 (K, F-9, F-7, K)
5. Nelson Velazquez, CF: 1-3 (F-8, 1B, K, F-8 SF, R, RBI)
6. Cole Roederer, DH #1: 0-3 (F-9, 1-3 SH, K, K)
7. Rafelin Lorenzo, C: 2-3 (4-3, 3B, 2B, 2 R, RBI)
8. Andy Weber, DH #2: 1-2 (1B, F-7 SF, 3-1, RBI)
9. Gustavo Polanco, 1B: 0-1 (L-4, HBP, F-8 SF, RBI)
10. Delvin Zinn, SS: 0-3 (4-3 DP, 6-3, K)
SOUTH BEND PITCHERS:
1. Jack Patterson: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 1 R (0 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 4/0 GO/AO, 30 pitches (22 strikes)
2. Casey Ryan: 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/3 GO/AO, 23 pitches (13 strikes)
3. Ivan Medina: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GO/AO, 18 pitches (11 strikes)
4. Blake Whitney: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 3/0 GO/AO, 24 pitches (16 strikes)
5. Jake Reindl: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 0 K, 1 GIDP, 2/0 GO/AO, 14 pitches (5 strikes)
6. Fauris Guerrero: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1/0 GO/AO, 12 pitches (9 strikes)
SOUTH BEND ERRORS: 1
2B Levi Jordan: E-4 (fielding error allowed batter to reach base safely)
WEATHER: Clear skies with temperatures in the 70's
"Just because it isn't official doesn't mean it didn't happen"
crunch 3 hours 35 min ago (view)
the indians waited too long to get trevor bauer away from influencing clevenger as a professional and human being...
there's a reason bauer has been sold "below cost" by 2 teams now.
also, do they even care that carlos carrasco is coming back from a boatload of chemo and has decided to participate in this season when he could have just taken his $$ and gone home for a year?
crunch 7 hours 16 min ago (view)
thursday stl/det double header postponed.
cards have played 5 games and might not play a 6th until the weekend...maybe.
some other teams will be 20+ games played at that point.
Eric S 7 hours 58 min ago (view)
Dietrich ends up with the Rangers on a minor league deal and sent to their alternate training site.
Cubster 8 hours 40 min ago (view)
No new Cardinals tested negative on Sunday. They need two days in a row of neg. testing to get the OK to resume the season. Today's tests are not back.
crunch 10 hours 7 min ago (view)
STL is going to go 1/2 month without playing a game...more at this point are possible.
they've played 5 games. some teams have played 16-17 games.
Childersb3 10 hours 32 min ago (view)
Why isn't Ryan Jensen at South Bend these days?
Regardless of if he gets called up. He should be there if he's healthy and able
crunch 1 day 6 hours ago (view)
"Zach Plesac (CLE) was sent home by the Indians and will be quarantined for 72 hours going out with friends in Chicago on Saturday night."
Eric S 1 day 7 hours ago (view)
Cubs have reset the rotation ahead of the series against the Indians: Lester, Hendricks, Darvish, Chatwood and Mills
Mills and Hendricks no longer back to back which makes sense given their similar styles
Mornington Crescent 1 day 8 hours ago (view)
They actually did a Strat-O-Matic simulation of the 1981 all star game at Municipal Stadium in Cleveland when the game was cancelled due to the strike, complete with scoreboard display. Bob Feller did the ceremonial first dice roll.
Arizona Phil 1 day 10 hours ago (view)
Derek Dietrich getting released and opening up a slot on the Cubs MLB Club Player Pool roster (which was full prior to Dietrich getting released) would allow Mark Zagunis to opt back into the season (if he so chooses) and return to the Club Player Pool, if being on the Restricted List was going to prevent him from being a first-time minor league 6YFA post-2020.
Arizona Phil 1 day 10 hours ago (view)
The path for Dietrich to the Cubs MLB Active List roster was always based on a potential injury to Rizzo, Kipnis, Schwarber, or Heyward, so I can see why Dietrich would request his release - IF - he has a for sure MLB gig with another club waiting for him, but otherwise no.
Eric S 1 day 11 hours ago (view)
Cubs released Derek Dietrich from his minor league contract - at Dietrich's request - so he can pursue other MLB opportunities. Wouldn't be surprised if he hooks on with the Braves as 2B Ozzie Albies was put on the IL last week with a wrist injury that may take considerable time to heal. In any event, the Cubs player pool back to 59 of a possible 60 players.
Cubster 1 day 14 hours ago (view)
Phillip Evans suffered a broken jaw and a concussion in his ugly collision with Gregory Polanco Per Jon Heyman.
Cubster 1 day 15 hours ago (view)
Pirates-Cardinals series also cancelled. Maybe they can play the games on Stratomatic with dice or All-Star baseball with spinners?
This was the Pirates only trip to StL but they do have a mid Sept series vs StL in PIT.
at least the Cardinals can't whine about losing home attendance revenue (but they do lose in Park advertising revs).
Jackstraw 1 day 18 hours ago (view)
So much for his offseason workouts with Kimbrel.