Cubs vs. White Sox: Hamels vs. Nova (Game 72)
CHC (39-32): LHP Cole Hamels (6-2, 2.98 ERA)
CHW 3(34-36): RHP Ivan Nova (3-5, 6.28 ERA)
First pitch 7:05pmCDT
The Cubs return home to take on their cross-city rivals. They remain 0.5 games behind Milwaukee with the Cards lagging an additional two games behind the Cubs. Cole Hamels made his third start without an earned run, going seven innings with 9 strikeouts in Colorado last time out. Few White Sox have seen much of him. Jon Jay and his 13 at-bats are on the IL. Jose Abreu is 4-9 with a homerun off of him. Hamels has been a tremendous groundball pitcher this year, and the White Sox have the second highest GB% behind the Marlins--that may provide some incentive for Maddon to start his best defensive infield. The general impatience of the Sox lineup should play to Hamels' favor, although he seems to have harnessed his command of late.
The White Sox are hovering around .500 as they bring along some of their younger players. Key players Yoan Moncada and Lucas Giolito have taken big steps forward, and Tim Anderson is riding an early season hot streak to what look like breakout numbers. Former Cubs prospect Eloy Jimenez has looked overmatched at times, but his power has shown up and he does have a 127 wRC+ since returning from the IL on May 20. Ivan Nova gets the start. He's had a rough 2019 on the mound, getting generally knocked around. He allowed four earned runs in 5.1 innings against the Yankees in his last start. Current Cubs are 41-139 against him. Rizzo, Contreras, Gonzalez, Baez, and Heyward have all slugged over .500 against him. The Cubs have posted a team wRC+ of 85 since the beginning of June. Javy Baez hasn't walked since May 31 and he's batting only .226 in June.
crunch 4 hours 13 min ago (view)
i forgot about these types of update posts...thanks for the breakdowns. they're really useful.
strong agreement on the mess t.olson was throwing. he didn't even look happy with himself out there.
Arizona Phil 4 hours 13 min ago (view)
I know most of you saw the game or will be seeing the game, but for anyone else who might be interested, here are the Cubs pitchers velo readings from Saturday night's game:
NOTES: Nice mix of pitches... Mills obviously comes from the "I'm a pitcher not a thrower" school, all of which means command & control matters a lot and he had both tonight... a legit candidate for the Cubs #5 SP slot...
crunch 5 hours 14 min ago (view)
hell of a 1st game. even the good and bad mean nothing this early in spring, but it was a nice one. i'm not worried about rizzo misplaying a couple balls in the first innings, nor do i think bote is on his way to a batting title. spring is meaningless enough without trying to read into february spring games. it was a fun watch, though.
my biggest regret is not seeing souza chase down any plays in LF while he was in the game. that's something i really would like to see this early in spring.
Dolorous Jon Lester 6 hours 4 min ago (view)
I also hope they edit it for the season. doesn't list pitcher or hitter or pitches thrown.
crunch 7 hours 12 min ago (view)
"i'm feeling right at home." - mark grace
crunch 7 hours 18 min ago (view)
really not a big fan of the marquee network's score bug graphic location.
crunch 8 hours 49 min ago (view)
d.ross got sent home with flu-like symptoms, andy green managing...
crunch 8 hours 58 min ago (view)
cubs coming out big for their marquee network debut lineup...
bryant / rizzo / baez / heyward / contreras / kipnis / souza (LF) / bote (DH) / almora...mills pitching
Arizona Phil 12 hours 43 min ago (view)
Besides Quintero, Altuve, and Made, a fourth significant IFA signing by the Cubs during the off-season was 16 year old Dominican CF Anderson Suriel. He played for the Dominican 15U World Cup team in 2018.
Arizona Phil 12 hours 43 min ago (view)
Contrary to reports, 2019-20 IFA J-2 C Brayan Altuve was -NOT - signed by the Cubs in July. The Cubs did not have enough ISBP room initially to fit in his $1M bonus, so instead he was "officially" signed after the conclusion of the 2019 season, which means the Cubs will get an extra year before Altuve will be Rule 5 Draft eligible (post-2024, instead of post-2023 which would have been the case if he had signed in July).
Arizona Phil 12 hours 51 min ago (view)
CRUNCH: It's still drizzling in Mesa but it's clearing to the southwest (which is where the rain came from) so the Cubs should have at least three hours to get the field ready. The infield is covered, so it's just the outfield that will be wet.
Arizona Phil 13 hours 14 min ago (view)
As things stand right now, 109 pitchers and 20 catchers are scheduled to report to Cubs Minor League Camp next week.
Arizona Phil 13 hours 52 min ago (view)
Jordan Patterson will not get an NRI to MLB Spring Training but he will likely get considerable playing time in Cubs MLB Cactus League games as he competes with Corban Joseph for AAA Iowa primary 1B.
crunch 15 hours 31 min ago (view)
cubs moving the game up was a wise choice unless the rain lingers very long. everyone else in ARZ is rained out except LA/SF which starts in 4 hours (cubs in 7 hours)...and that LA/SF game still might get rained out because other games in that time slot have been cancelled/postponed (though they posted a lineup for today's game on twitter 10 minutes ago).
speaking of LA, m.betts makes his debut tomorrow vs CHC.
Arizona Phil 16 hours 24 min ago (view)
The Cubs have signed post-2019 minor league 6YFA 1B-OF Jordan Patterson (ex-COL) and RHRP Dario Beltre to 2020 minor league contracts.
Patterson (who has considerable AAA experience and some MLB time as well) was assigned to AAA Iowa and Beltre (who has not pitched above AA in ten minor league seasons) was assigned to AA Tennessee.
Arizona Phil 16 hours 35 min ago (view)
The Cubs have released 13 minor leaguers:
LHP Andres Bonalde
RHP Alfredo Colorado
RHP Julio Guante
OF Albert Hinirio
RHP M. T. Minacci
INF Rafael Narea
INF Herson Perez
RHP Tyler Peyton
RHP Casey Ryan
LHP Saul Vazquez
RHP Omar Ventura
OF Ricardo Verenzuela
OF Brandon Vicens