The Kimbrel Kronicles
Here is what I saw this week from Craig Kimbrel's Spring Training in June at the Cubs Mesa facility:
He's wearing #24
26 pitches (14 strikes) in late afternoon (104 degrees) "live" BP/sim game on Field #1 at Riverview Baseball Complex
Seven batters faced
1. hard-contact ground ball down 1st base line on a 1-0 pitch (would have been a double or a triple)
2. hard contact fly ball (HR) to LF on 1-1 pitch
3. strike out swinging on 2-2 pitch
4. strike out looking on 2-2 pitch
5. walk on 3-2 pitch
6. hard-contact line-drive to left-center on 1-0 pitch (would have been a double)
7. soft contact grounder to SS on 1-2 pitch (would have been 6-4 FC or 6-4-3 DP if needed)
NOTE: Also two foul balls - one hard contact line-drive off 1st base side bench fence, the other lined straight back
COMMENT: Still has command issues and stuff was not as electric as in previous outing on Thursday
24 pitches (15 strikes) in late afternoon (108 degrees) "live" BP/sim game at Sloan Park (Cubs Spring Training stadium)
Five batters faced
1. hard contact line-drive to RF on 0-2 pitch (would have been a single)
2. strike out swinging on 2-2 pitch
3. strike out swinging on 3-2 pitch
4. strike out swinging on 2-2 pitch
5. soft-contact two-hopper to 1st base on 2-1 pitch (would have been a 3-U)
NOTE: There were also four foul balls popped into grandstands, two on 1st base side and two on 3rd base side.
COMMENT: Had difficulty commanding FB but velo in mid-90's and slider was sharp
44 pitches thrown in morning bullpen session (10:45 AM local).
COMMENT: He bounced slider a few times but went straight-through without stopping and looked pleased after he was done (smiled and shook hands with everybody who was there).
My favorite part of Kimbrel's two "live" BP outings was 35 or 40 of the Cubs AZL pitchers standing around watching him warm up in the bullpen before he took the field.
So my general opinion of Kimbrel's performance this week is that while he clearly has good FB velo and his slider has bite, he also has difficulty commanding his stuff and throwing strikes, and inexperienced AZL hitters were able to barrel-up his stuff and make hard contact a bit too often.
Hagsag 1 hour 51 min ago (view)
Predictions on the Rule 5 draft this morning?
Hagsag 2 hours 10 min ago (view)
Very, very interesting Phil. Thanks for the post.
Arizona Phil 6 hours 21 min ago (view)
What was the stated purpose of the 1953 Bonus Rule?
COMMISSIONER FORD FRICK: "We want the kind of bonus rule that will discourage the Majors from paying out big bonuses, and encourage the little fellows (he is referring here to the minor leagues) to sign these youngsters and then sell them to clubs of a higher classification."
crunch 8 hours 50 min ago (view)
g.cole - yanks - 9/324m
s.strasburg - nats - 7/245m
a.rendon - angels - 7/245m
boras has signed $814m of contracts for his guys this week. not bad.
crunch 8 hours 57 min ago (view)
still waiting for rich hill to happen over here...i promise to be totally not impressed or happy about it. not a tj guy, but he's injured as hell and not expected to show up until mid-season at best.
whoever they pick to give a few million dollars over a couple seasons to not pitch for the cubs in any of them, i welcome them.
on a serious tip, there are rumors of a minor league deal for b.morrow.
bradsbeard 9 hours 31 min ago (view)
Taijuan Walker is a good candidate.
cubbies.4ever 10 hours 57 min ago (view)
So who is left in the free Agent market that has had Tommy John surgery? That seems to be a Prerequisite for Theo. Cotton and Winkler both did adding to all the other signings of Theo. I would love to see how many people Theo has signed or drafted who has had TJS.
Charlie 19 hours 39 min ago (view)
I hope "isn't happening" was more like, "we'd love to continue to discuss this soon"--after extensions/trades of younger players are a bit more sorted.
Charlie 19 hours 42 min ago (view)
If only they had revenue from having recently won the World Series and a string of playoff appearances along with a new TV contract! Then they could really spend.
crunch 19 hours 59 min ago (view)
i wish this team was owned by billionaires rather than these...oh, nevermind.
Dolorous Jon Lester 20 hours 36 min ago (view)
Apparently Cubs were approached by Rizzo's agent about an extension. They told him it wasn't happening.
Cubs organization is performing a master class in how to burn good will among fans!
Arizona Phil 1 day 10 hours ago (view)
jdlym: The contract Brad Brach signed with the Mets includes a $850K base salary for 2020, a $1.25M club option for 2021, $400K in potential performance bonuses in 2020, potentially $2.25M in 2021 salary accelerators, and $500K in potential performance bonuses in 2021, so ordinarily the Cubs salary obligation to Brach would be the difference between Brach's new 2020 base salary ($850K) and what would have been his 2020 player option salary ($1.35M) if he hadn't been released by the Cubs.
jdrnym 1 day 17 hours ago (view)
Hey AZPhil, when a player is released with money/years still remaining on his contract, does his next team *have* to give him the prorated major league minimum or can they offer more (meaning the original club owes less) to "outbid" other teams that may have had interest? I'm assuming that's what happened with Brad Brach, where the Mets signed him for 2020 at $850,000.
crunch 1 day 18 hours ago (view)
jeremy jeffress agrees.
Rob Richardson 1 day 22 hours ago (view)
It's high time if you ask me.