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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  • JustSayin' 1 hour 3 min 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 4 hours 50 min 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 4 hours 58 min 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 6 hours 50 min 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 7 hours 2 min 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 7 hours 14 min 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 7 hours 18 min ago (view)

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

     

  • crunch 7 hours 22 min 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 8 hours 44 min 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 14 hours 9 min 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 14 hours 20 min 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.

     

  • Cubster 14 hours 22 min ago (view)

    The billionaires vs the millionaires. The beauty of the game is not the business of the game. 

     

  • Cubster 15 hours 3 min ago (view)

    Bat-signal seen in the Mesa skyline...AZ Phil, time to don the mask and cape.

     

  • Cubster 15 hours 5 min ago (view)

    per mlbtr, supposedly the Cubs have released 30 minor leaguers although Stewart and Asuaje are the only two names so far.

     

  • crunch 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    cubs release brock stewart (AAA Rule 5 pick) and carlos asuaje (middle IF'r)...both older AAA/MLB-replacement-part types.

     

  • crunch 1 day 6 hours ago (view)

    after dragging their feet, the cubs commit to paying their minor leaguers through june.

    i'm a bit dissapointed they're not going to pay the last 2 months.  yeah, they're not the worst owners (in fact, the "through june" thing is common), but they can do better for their baseball household.