Alzolay Stifles Snakes at Salt River Fields

Pedro Martinez drilled an RBI single to drive-in Rochest Cruz and put the Cubs on the board in the top of the 3rd and then Diamondbacks Joey Rose and Keshawn Lynch belted back-to-back doubles with one out in the bottom of the 5th to knot the score, and that's the way it ended as the Cubs and D'backs played to a 1-1 tie in Cactus League Extended Spring Training game action Thursday morning on Whirlwind Field at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick Resort east of Scottsdale, AZ.    

SP Adbert Alzolay (on Iowa 7-day IL - lat strain) hurled three innings of shutout ball for the Cubs (F-9, P-5, 4-3 * P-4, 1B - CS, K * K, K, 1B, 6-4 FC). He threw 39 pitches (11 in the 1st, 12 in the 2nd, and 16 in the 3rd), of which 22 were strikes. All three of his strikeout victims went down swinging. Alzolay velo was FB 92-95 (T-96), CH 83-86, and CV 79-82, and he was generally able to command all three of his pitches. The FB gained velo during the outing, starting at 92-94 in the 1st inning before consistently sitting at 94-95 (touched 96 once) in the 2nd and 3rd. He mixed his FB & CV (only) in his first two innings, before introducing his CH (he threw five) in his third inning. Alzolay was almost too efficient, because after finishing his three innings of work in the game, he was directed to throw an additional 15 pitches in the bullpen (five FB, five CV, and five CH). 
 
The Cubs played only one Cactus League EXST game today, so the squad that traveled to Salt River Fields consisted of elements of both the "A" team and the "B" team. 

Here is the abridged box score from the game (Cubs players only): 

CUBS LINEUP:
1. Jacob Hannemann, CF: 1-3 (1B, 5-3, 3-U)
2. Rochest Cruz, DH #1: 1-2 (4-3 DP, BB, K, R, 2 SB)
3. Pedro Martinez, SS: 1-3 (F-9, 1B, P-6, RBI, CS)
4. Wladimir Galindo, DH #2: 1-3 (2B, 5-3, 6-3)
5. Fabian Pertuz, 3B: 0-3 (L-3, P-4, P-6)
6a. Jonathan Soto, C: 0-2 (P-2, L-7)
6b. Alexander Guerra, C: 0-1 (6-3)
7. Reivaj Garcia, 2B: 1-3 (5-3, 1B, K, CS) 
8. Jake Slaughter, 1B: 1-3 (F-8, E-6, 3B)
9. Dalton Hurd, RF: 0-3 (6-3, P-6, K)
10. Fernando Kelli, LF-DH: 0-2 (5-3, K)
11a. Widimer Joaquin, DH #3: 0-1 (K) 
11b. Brandon Vicens, LF: 1-1 (1B, CS)

CUBS PTCHERS:
1. Adbert Alzolay: 3.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K, 2/3 GO/AO, 39 pitches (22 strikes) 
2. Chi-Feng Lee: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (1 ER), 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 2/2 GO/AO, 27 pitches (18 strikes)
3. Fauris Guerrero: 2.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 K, 1 WP, 1/3 GO/AO, 24 pitches (16 strikes)
4. Benjamin Rodriguez: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K, 0/5 GO/AO, 27 pitches (16 strikes) 

CUBS ERRORS: NONE 

CUBS CATCHERS DEFENSE
Jonathan Soto: 1-1 CS 

ATTENDANCE: 14 

WEATHER: Partly cloudy with temperatures in the 80's 

Arizona 
Scoring 
Service 

"Just because it isn't official doesn't mean it didn't happen" 

Comments

Fauris Guerrero and Benjamin Rodriguez doing it.

Hey PHIL! Thanks for the eyes on the ground there, sir! What is the level of competition out there right now? Curious and trying to gauge what level the hitters he faced are at. 

E-MAN: In terms of the Cubs it would be approximately equivalent to Eugene, but it's a mix of guys from various levels. For example, this was the AZ lineup that faced Alzolay this morning (2018 level in parenthesis):

1. Matt Szczur, CF (MLB/AAA - post-2018 minor league FA - age 29) 
2. Kevin Watson Jr, LF (AZL/SS-A - AZ 2017 18th round pick - age 19)
3. Liover Peguero, SS (DSL/AZL - AZ 2017 IFA - age 18)
4. Jesus Marriaga, RF (AZL/SS-A - AZ 2016 IFA - age 20) 
5. Joey Rose, 3B (SS-A/Lo-A - AZ 2016 5th round pick - age 21) 
6. Keyshawn Lynch, 2B (SS-A - AZ 2017 14th round pick - age 22) 
7. Joe Gillette, 1B (AZL - AZ 2018 36th round pick - age 23) 
8. David Sanchez, DH #1 (SS-A - 2015 IFA - age 20)
9. Ryan January, C (SS-A - AZ 2016 8th round pick - age 21) 
10. Rafael Jimenez, DH #2 (DSL - AZ 2016 IFA - age 19) 

Alzolay struck out Lynch, Gillette, and Sanchez (all swinging), and Rose and January got the two hits (both singles). 

OF Kristian Robinson and SS Blaze Alexander are among the Diamondbacks Top 10 prospects and they are both at EXST, but they did not play in the game. 

is szczur coming off an injury or are they deciding what to do with him or what?

CRUNCH: Szczur is on the AAA Reno 7-day IL, but I can't say for sure that he has (or had) an injury. Sort of like Jacob Hannemann.  

hell yeah, alzolay...nice.

cj picks up the win in relief for iowa and b.duensing has given up earned runs in his last 5 appearances without missing many bats (5.2ip 14h 4bb 1k, 7er)...

disregard

Thank you, Phil. Is Jose Albertos still in Arizona? I know that the kid is still only 20, but after last season's difficulties, what can we expect from him this year?

KPB: Jose Albertos is at EXST working on finding the strike zone, and he did that (more-or-less) on Friday, throwing only 18 pitches (61% strikes), issuing no walks, and inducing six soft-contact ground-ball outs in his two innings of work. His CV and CH are both plus pitches, but he still has some difficulty comanding his FB (which is consistently 91-94 MPH), but it looks he may be turning the corner somewhat. 

Thank you, Phil. That sounds encouraging. 

Recent comments

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  • Eric S 1 hour 16 min ago (view)

    Not a hill I’m going to die on for sure, but compare the 2019 defense vs 2016, I believe Cubs are bottom half on defense.  Also, last info I saw on the topic, Cubs lead the majors in outs recorded on the basepaths.  At six games over .500, Four teams in the NL have better records than the Cubs, who are now tied with the Phillies and just a game ahead of the Brewers. I think it was Bill Parcells who said you are what your record says you are - have to agree here too. 

     

  • CubbyBlue 1 hour 51 min ago (view)

    I've lost the joy of making this Cub fan blow himself up.

    If I had continiued today, Dan would have dragged himself back into frame as a bloodied Leonardo DiCaprio and said, "I ain't afraid to die any more. I done it already."

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 5 hours 19 min ago (view)

    I wonder if Joe will talk about how he feels re: next years contract to media today?

     

  • Dolorous Jon Lester 5 hours 20 min ago (view)

    I don’t think Kintzler threw a single pitch where a Pirate swung and missed. All swings led to foul balls or that walk off hit. It was obvious he had nothing. The guy hadn’t pitched in over a week, so I can’t really blame him.

     

  • Jackstraw 6 hours 18 min ago (view)

    Cubs at home = Roadrunner

    Cubs on road = Wile E. Coyote

     

  • crunch 13 hours 11 min ago (view)

    23 years old and carving up the hopes and dreams of the very young kids he was pitching against...

    hard to take a 23 year old in DSL too seriously, but his numbers were filthy.  0.87 era, 0.48 whip, 11.6 k/9

     

  • Arizona Phil 13 hours 26 min ago (view)

    RHRP Marcos Encarnacion (DSL Cubs #2 closer) busted for PED (the ever-popular stanozolol), gets 72-game suspension that will carry through the 2020 season (he will be 25 in November 2020). Encarnacion formerly pitched in the Reds organization and was signed as a 23-year old second-contract FA by the Cubs in June. 

     

  • crunch 13 hours 53 min ago (view)

    truth.

     

  • Charlie 13 hours 59 min ago (view)

    By the end of this road trip, Bill might really have seen some things. No shortage of stuff to discuss in therapy.

     

  • crunch 14 hours 6 min ago (view)

    obligatory farnsworth flashback video...

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZbG5MPsfYM

    some nice bonus "pissed off sarge" gary matthews in there, too...and dusty baker handling shit.  say what one wants about his lineup construction, dusty put up with some insane baseball attitudes with players he managed.  i still can't believe a clubhouse with jeff kent and barry bonds didn't result in attempted murder at the very least.

     

  • Charlie 14 hours 16 min ago (view)

    I think they are better than slightly above average in every area but the bullpen. Fangraphs WAR numbers suggest they are top 4 offense in the NL, top 5 rotation in NL, and bottom 5 bullpen in the NL. But that still suggests they should be right where they are, struggling to stay in the back of the pack of contenders for the postseason. So, that's probably close to what you are saying, but we could maybe attribute it mostly to one flaw--the bullpen.

     

  • Eric S 14 hours 25 min ago (view)

    Brandon Morrow says hello too re the front office’s best laid plans

     

  • Charlie 14 hours 34 min ago (view)

    Started to feel like I was watching Kyle Farnsworth and just knowing that he didn't have a way of getting the batter out.

    For those looking to identify the particular nightmare I was reliving: https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/sports/2004...

     

  • Charlie 14 hours 39 min ago (view)

    Kyle Ryan and Brandon Kintzler handling a 1-run lead in a 9th inning following a sweep to the Phillies. This is not the bullpen the front office has been trying to assemble. The closer, the setup man/backup closer (Strop), the future closer (Edwards), and the replacement closer (Kimbrel) have all fallen through in one way or another. If they can make the playoffs, I suppose we expect Kimbrel and Cishek as reinforcements? It's still going to be rough with Strop underperforming.

     

  • crunch 15 hours 8 min ago (view)

    this has been a particularly rough set of losses...ow.

     

  • Eric S 15 hours 9 min ago (view)

    The thing is, this Cub team has so many flaws you really can’t take the inevitable  meltdowns too harshly. The Cubs are a slightly above average team - that’s all