Cubs AZ Instructional League game report
Hunter Bishop drilled an RBI triple and an RBI single, walked, stole a base, and scored two runs, Will Wilson doubled twice, singled, walked, scored two runs, and drove-in another, Luis Matos doubled twice and knocked-in a run, Brett Auerbach cracked a two-run triple, Logan Wyatt blasted a solo HR, and Alexander Canario made a game-ending diving catch in RF, as the Giants thrashed the Cubs 11-4 in AZIL game action Friday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
Canario suffered what appeared to be a significant left shoulder injury making the diving catch and had to be carted off the field.
Eight of the Giants' twelve hits were for extra-bases (including five doubles, two triples, and one HR).
Yonathan Perlaza hammered a solo HR and a triple and racked-up an outfield assist, Chase Strumpf collected two RBI singles, Jordan Nwogu singled twice, walked, stole a base, and scored a run, and Nelson Velazquez laced an RBI single for the Cubs in a losing cause.
The 21-year old switch-hitting Perlaza is being converted from an infielder (3B-2B) to an outfielder at Instructs, in large part to let him concentrate on his hitting. (His infield defense was pretty bad, and he would sometimes seem to take an error with him to the plate). But there is no doubting his offensive tools (hard contact with a slightly upper-cut swing path from both sides of the plate and above-average speed on the bases). He has played all three OF positions so far at Instructs, but looks most comfortable in LF (he played ten games in LF for South Bend in 2019). He will likely be added to the 38-man AAA Iowa reserve list on 11/20 so that he can be selected in the Major League Phase only ($100,000 draft price with the potential to re-claim in the Major League Phase, versus $24,000 draft price with no right to reclaim if he were to be placed on the AA Tennessee reserve list and be selected in the AAA Phase).
Cubs RHP Danis Correa pitched the 9th inning for the Cubs, throwing mostly all fastballs and consistently hitting 97-98. Like Perlaza, the 21-year old Correa is eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft, and while his secondaries need a lot of work and his command comes and goes, some club might want to take a gamble on him, if for no other reason than the high-velo FB. Because of his size (he is only 5'11 155), he likely profiiles as a one-inning high-octane bullpen arm. Like Perlaza, Correa is a virtual lock to be placed on the AAA Iowa reserve list on 11/20 so that he will be eligible for selection in the Rule 5 Draft's Major League Phase only.
Here is the abridged box score from today's game (Cubs players only):
Jordan Nwogu, singled, doubled, tripled, scored two runs, drove-in another, and made a diving catch in LF, Yonathan Perlaza singled twice and scored a run, and Manuel Espinoza hurled three innings of perfect baseball, as the Cubs cruised past the Diamondbacks 6-2 in AZ Instructional League game action Wednesday afternoon on Whirlwind Field at Salt Rivers Fields at Talking Stick east of Scottsdale, AZ.
Kristian Robinson drilled an RBI double for the D'backs in a losing cause.
Here is the abridged box score from the game (Cubs players only):
Matt Mervis blasted a three-run home run, Cole Roederer belted a solo HR, and Andy Weber stroked a single and an RBI double, helping to lead the Cubs to a 6-4 victory over the Brewers in AZ Instructional League game action Tuesday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
Carlos Rodriguez drilled an RBI triple and scored on a sacrifice fly to put the Brew Crew up 2-0 in the top of the 1st inning and Brice Turang laced an RBI single in the top of the 7th in a losing cause.
Cole Roederer drilled a line-drive two-out two-run single to CF to put the Cubs on the board in the bottom of the 1st, Alfonso Rivas doubled, singled, and scored, Luis Verdugo doubled, singled, and scored, Nelson Velazquez singled twice, scored a run, and drove-in another, Ethan Hearn singled twice and knocked-in a run, Cam Balego singled twice and scored twice, and Matt Mervis doubled and singled, as the Cubs collected 13 hits and edged the Athletics 5-4 in AZ Instructional League game action Monday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
Jonah Bride (two-run HR) and Tyler Soderstrom (solo shot) belted four-baggers for the A's in a losing cause.
Jake McCarthy clubbed a solo HR, walked twice, and singled, and SP Tyler Holton and four relievers combined to toss a shutout, as the Diamondbacks blanked the Cubs 2-0 in AZ Instructional League game action Saturday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
Cubs pitchers had a pretty good day, too, striking out 14 D'backs (13 swinging) while allowing two runs on five hits and five walks.
Jared Young tripled and singled for the Cubs in a losing cause.
Here is the abridged box score from the game (Cubs players only):
Yohendrick Pinango drilled an RBI single, Luis Vazquez ripped an RBI triple, and Cam Balego lofted a sacrifice fly to highlight a three-run 8th. as the Cubs rallied to tie the Giants 4-4 in AZ Instructional League game action Friday afternoon on Field #2 (AKA "Jim Davenport Field") at Indian School Park in Scottsdale, AZ.
Ghordy Santos laced an RBI double in the bottom of the 5th and hammered a line-drive two-run HR over the CF Batter's Eye in the bottom of the 7th for the Giants.
Chase Strumpf belted a two-run HR halfway up the LF berm and singled and scored, Jacob Wetzel clubbed a two-run HR halfway up the RF berm and walked and scored, Andy Weber stroked a single and a two-run double, and Alfonso Rivas drilled an RBI single, walked twice, and stole a base, in Cubs AZ Instructional League intrasquad game action Wednesday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
SP Gus Varland tossed three innings of one-hit shutout ball, Drew Millas singled twice, walked, and scored a run, and Danny Bautista singled twice, drove-in a run, scored a run, and stole a base, leading the Athletics to an 8-2 victory over the Cubs in AZ Instructional League game action Monday afternoon at HoHoKam Park in Mesa, AZ.
Luis Vazquez collected three hits (two singles and an RBI double) and Chase Strumpf belted a solo HR (opposite field high fly off the top of the RF fence) to provide what there was of Cub offense (the Cubs had only two other hits in the game).
Jared Young singled twice, stole a base, scored a run, and drove-in a run with a sacrifice fly, and Alfonso Rivas (RBI single), Matt Mervis (two-out RBI double), Cam Balego (RBI double), Christopher Morel (RBI triple), and Rafael Morel (game-tying two-out two-run single) collected run-scoring hits for the Cubs, and Armani Smith belted a booming three-run home run and Tyler Fitzgerald drilled a line-drive solo shot for the Giants, as the two teams played to a 7-7 tie in AZ Instructional League game action Saturday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
RHP Manuel Rodriguez (on Cubs MLB 60-day IL) made his first game appearance since leaving a Cactus League Spring Training game last March with a right biceps strain, throwing one inning (10 pitches) and allowing one hit and one run (Fitzgerald's solo HR). He struck out one (swinging) and retired the other two batters on a 4-3 GO and F-8 FO.
INF Kevin Made (July 2019 IFA - Dominican Republic - $1.5M signing bonus) made his pro game debut and got a hit in his first pro AB, reaching base on a two-out bloop single that fell in front of a diving Giants RF in the bottom of the 7th inning. Made would later score one of the two runs driven-in by Rafael Morel.
You may have noticed that the Cubs have been playing their infielders all around the infield in AZIL games (and in instructs pre-game and Camp Day infield practice as well), and that's because with the extensive use of shifting today in MLB, infielders need to know the mechanics of all three positions (2B, 3B, and SS) as they move forward, even if the player might profile primarily at one infield position in particular.
Cubs 2020 1st round draft pick Ed Howard IV (Mt. Carmel HS - Chicago, IL) drilled a pinch-hit RBI double in his pro game debut and Jacob Wetzel (2020 NDFA - Frederick CC) laced an RBI triple and scored on a Fabian Pertuz RBI single in his pro game debut, as the Cubs rallied to tie the Giants 5-5 in AZ Instructional League Opening Day game action Wednesday afternoon at Sloan Park in Mesa, AZ.
Rob Emery belted a three-run HR and Marco Luciano followed with a monster solo shot (both off Cubs SP Cory Abbott) to give the Giants an early 4-0 lead, before the Cubs came roaring back in the late innings.
Besides Howard and Wetzel, three other Cubs made their pro game debut on Wednesday. LF Jordan Nwogu (2020 3rd round pick - U. of Michigan) reached base on an HBP in his first pro AB and later scored from 1st base on the Wetzel triple, 1B Matt Mervis (2020 NDFA - Duke) drew a walk in his first pro AB and later scored on the Howard RBI double, and RHRP Ben Leeper (2020 NDFA - Oklahoma State) threw one inning in relief.