Cubs 2014 in Videos; 3/31/14 – Samardzija’s Gem on Opening Day

For the second straight season, Jeff Samardzija shut down the Pirates on opening day.

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Cubs Cut Ties With Kane County; Hello South Bend

Silver Hawks

After two seasons the Chicago Cubs are moving on from Kane County, and will begin a player development contract with the South Bend Silver Hawks next season (Low A affiliate).  For me this is disappointing only because it was very easy to get to Kane County to see the Cubs prospects play, South Bend is a little further.  On the bright side, the Silver Hawks are still in the Midwest League, so they will travel to Kane County regularly.   As pointed out on Twitter, Kane County is in a different division, and South Bend will not travel there in 2015…. Never mind that “bright side” comment.

South Bend would kill to get the Cubs, not saying they did…. (nervous laugh) but they were hard after the Cubs for a very long time, and it now is coming to fruition.  The main reason for moves like this are to enhance the player development within the organization, hence “player development contract.”  For the two years with Kane County, the Cubs wanted major improvements to the facilities, and while the Cougars announced that they were making upgrades this offseason, it seems as though it wasn’t enough.

I’m sad to say so long to the good people at Kane County, but excited for South Bend Cubs baseball, hope the price of gas goes down next summer…yeeeeeaaah.

 

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Daytona Throttles Dunedin in Game One

Daytona Game One

Full Box Score

The task facing the Daytona Cubs offense was a tall one coming into game one, Matt Boyd had been lights out for Dunedin in 90 innings of work this year.  Not tonight.  The D-Cubs torched Boyd for seven runs over the first 3.1 innings en route to an 11-1 laugher.

At the Plate:

  • Kyle Schwarber was 1-for-5, but it was a big one, a two-0ut grand slam in the fourth inning.  He finished with four RBI’s, and one run scored.
  • Dan Vogelbach had a huge game, he went 2-for-5 with a double, a home run, two RBI’s, and two runs scored.
  • Billy McKinney hasn’t slowed down all year, he went 2-for-4 with a double, and two runs scored in the win.
  • Willson Contreras was solid behind the plate, and at the plate, he went 3-for-4 with an RBI, and three runs scored.
  • Bijan Rademacher was also productive from the bottom of the order, he went 3-for-3 with three RBI’s.

On the Mound:

  • Rob Zastrynzy got the start, and was brilliant in picking up the victory.  Zastrynzy worked six innings, giving up one run on five hits, while walking one, and striking out four.
  • The D-Cubs pen worked three scoreless innings, but struggled with their command.  Starling Peralta worked an inning while walking two, and striking out one.  Gerardo Concepcion worked an inning while walking three (See?), and Jose Rosario mopped things up, working an inning while giving up two hits.

Game two is tomorrow night, the D-Cubs have a chance to make quick work of the best of three series.

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Playoff Primer; Daytona Cubs [vs] Dunedin Blue Jays

Daytona

 

If I would have told you that the Daytona Cubs would be participating in the FSL Playoffs this year you would have called me crazy, and probably kicked me a couple times.  But here we are, after a horrendous start to the season, the D-Cubs torched the FSL North in the second half of the season, going 41-27 thanks to some key additions to their lineup.  The two additions I’m thinking of are Kyle Schwarber (2014 1st round pick), and Billy McKinney who was acquired from Oakland in the Samardzija/Hammel deal in July.

Schwarber Aldrin Capulong

Schwarber played in 44 games for Daytona this year, he hit .302 with ten homers, and twenty-eight RBI’s while OPS’ing at a .952 clip.  Schwarber also knows how to get on base, he walked twenty-six times against only thirty-eight strikeouts.

McKinney had a similar season with Daytona, minus the power.  McKinney played in 51 games with Daytona, he hit .301 with twelve doubles, four triples, one homer, and thirty-six RBI’s.  Much like Schwarber, McKinney gets on base with the best of them, he walked twenty-five times against forty-two strikeouts, eerily similar to Schwarber.

Game one is tomorrow night in Daytona, and the Cubs need to take game one before the best of three series shifts to Dunedin.  Daytona sends Rob Zastrynzy to the mound in game one, Z was 4-6 with a 4.66 ERA with Daytona this year.  A stiff test awaits the D-Cubs lineup as Dunedin will go to Matt Boyd who has been lights out this year, he went 5-3 with a 1.39 ERA this season.

Check back for game updates, recaps, etc.  Please don’t rain.

 

FSL North Championship Series Schedule

Game 1 – Tuesday, September 2, 7:05 p.m. – Radiology Associates Field at Jackie Robinson Ballpark

Game 2 – Wednesday, September 3, 6:30 p.m. – Florida Auto Exchange Stadium

Game 3 – Thursday, September 4, 6:30 p.m. – Florida Auto Exchange Stadium (If Necessary)

 

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Jorge Soler Destroys Cardinals, Twice (VIDEO)

So, that was rather exciting.  The Cubs trailed all night, then Jorge Soler took over, Soler tied the game with a solo shot in the seventh inning, and extended the lead in the eighth with an absolute bomb, one of the farthest we have seen all year.

Expletive.  Enjoy.

 

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Hip Hip, Jorge! Soler Mashes First Major League Homer on First Swing

Just pure excitement, this has been a long time coming, and finally we Cubs fans are being rewarded with talent on the field.  It didn’t take Soler long to make an impact, he launched the fourth Major League pitch he saw 432 feet for his first career home run.

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Cubs Ride Homers From Rizzo and Alcantara to Fourth Straight Win

Cubs Line Score 8-26-14

Full Box Score

Solid pitching?  Check.  Just enough hitting?  Check.

It seems simple, but the Cubs have played some solid baseball over the past 90 games (45-45 before tonight), and they aren’t showing any signs of slowing down with their latest win in Cincinnati tonight, their fourth straight.  Travis Wood found his 2013 magic against his former employer, he worked six scoreless Cubs 8-26 Pictureinnings, giving up just two hits, while walking one, and striking out five.  The Cubs pen shut, no, slammed the door once again, as Neil Ramirez, Pedro Strop, and Hector Rondon were lights out.  Wood picked up his eighth win of the season, and Rondon registered his 22nd save of the year.

Offensively the Cubs got started in the first, and that was all they needed.  Anthony Rizzo hit an absolute bomb off of Cy Young candidate Johnny Cueto in the first, it was his 30th home run of the season, that’s impressive.  Starlin Castro returned from the bereavement list tonight, and picked up right where he left off, he went 2-for-4 in the win.  Arismendy Alcantara joined the fun late, as he blasted a two-run shot to give the Cubs some insurance in the seventh.

Get ready for Jorge Soler, he debuts tomorrow!

Note:  Anthony Rizzo left the game late with some back tightness, he should be fine.

Cubs 8-26 Box

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Soler Hits One Last Bomb With Iowa (VIDEO)

Not a bad way to go out, eh?  Jorge Soler took Taijuan Walker deep last night, then was pulled because he was getting called up by the Cubs, solid night.  Pure power on display here, gets a fastball up, and destroys it, I can’t wait for Wednesday when Soler is expected to make his debut with the Cubs in Cinicnnati.

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Hip Hip, Jorge! Per Reports, Jorge Soler is Getting the Call

Finally.  Per David Kaplan, Jorge Soler will be called up by the Cubs, and will be joining the big club in Cincinnati tomorrow.

LOUD NOISES!!!!

Soler hit his eighth home run (with Iowa) of the season tonight, off of Mariners number one prospect Taijuan Walker… then was pulled from the game, now we know why.  Welcome to Chicago, Jorge!  The one thing fans will notice with Soler is the advanced approach, he knows how to work his at bats, and will take his walks, a stark departure from what we have seen from Baez, etc.

 

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Addison Russell Continues to Show Off His Power (VIDEO)

It was an exciting day for the prospects yesterday, and Addison Russell made sure to join the fun.  Russell belted his 12th home run of the season with the Smokies (175 at bats), after a slow start, Russell has dominated Double-A pitching.

 

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