August 2012

August 30, 2012 – Cubs Lineup vs. Brewers

Please don’t get swept.  It’s been a nightmare season against the Brewers as the Cubs have lost all but three games, they’ve played 16 times!  Brooks Raley looks to finish off the season series with a win this afternoon against Shaun Marcum.  Anthony Rizzo is back in the lineup, while Alfonso Soriano gets a breather, here is how the rest of the Cubs will line up.

1. DeJesus LF
2. Valbuena 3B
3. Castro SS
4. Rizzo 1B
5. LaHair RF
6. Clevenger C
7. Jackson CF
8. Barney 2B
9. Raley P

Thanks for reading, go Cubs!
– George

Amaya Named to NWL All-Star Team!

In my opinion the Boise Hawks got jobbed.  They are the hottest team in the NWL, and are tied with Yakima for the best record in the East League overall.  That’s saying something considering how bad of a first half they had, so I was expecting more than one all-star.  Oh well, guess Boise will just have to go out and win the whole thing instead.  The man who did get elected to the all-star team is Gioskar Amaya, the second baseman regularly led off for Boise and was a big reason for the second half surge.  I love the fact that Amaya gets on base (.373 OBP), he understands his role, and that’s not the easiest thing to do for a 19 year-old.

 Congrats to Gioskar, and best of luck to him and his Boise teammates in the playoffs!

Thanks for reading,
– George

Vogelbach and Martinez-Pumarino Named to AZL All-Star Team!

It’s a short season so the AZL selects an all-star team as an end of year award.  It’s not your typical, you’re an all-star now go play in a meaningless game, it’s basically an MVP award at each position, with one player awarded the overall MVP award.  The AZL Cubs have two players that have been named best at their position for 2012, first baseman Daniel Vogelbach and relief pitcher Carlos-Martinez-Pumarino!

Both guys had outstanding seasons for the AZL Cubs, what’s most impressive is Daniel Vogelbach was not even with the AZL Cubs for the whole season, quite the accomplishment.  The full list of MVP’s can be found here, here’s a look at what Vogelbach and Martinez-Pumarino did this year.

Congrats to both guys, and good luck in the playoffs as both Boise and the AZL Cubs are headed there.

Thanks for reading,
– George

8/29: Around the Cubs Minor League System

Our daily look at the Cubs minor leaguers.  Tennessee was off and the AZL Cubs regular season has come to an end.  They wound up winning the wild card.

FULL BOX SCORE

Boise got the bats going once again beating Everett 9-5.  Stephen Bruno was back at it going 2-for-3 with an RBI, he is now hitting .354.  Dan Vogelbach was 1-for-3 with a home run, his 10th of the season.  Rock Shoulders had a nice night going 2-for-4 with a double, a run scored, and two RBIs.  Darien Martin and Marco Hernandez each had a hit and an RBI.  Albert Almora was 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored.  Tayler Scott started, but did not factor in the decision pitching only four innings and allowing three runs, two earned.  Michael Heesch did get the win pitching the next two innings not allowing a run.  Nathan Dorris pitched two scoreless innings and Eduardo Orozco pitched the final frame, giving up two runs.

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FULL BOX SCORE

Cedar Rapids jumped on Peoria early and held on to beat Peoria 9-5.  Jorge Soler was 2-for-3 with two runs scored and an RBI.  Chadd Krist and Jacob Rogers each had one hit and one RBI, with Krist having a triple.  Zeke DeVoss and Dustin Geiger each had a hit and a hit and combined to score three runs.  Yao-Lin Wang started and struggled, giving up nine runs, seven earned on eight hits in getting the loss.  Bryce Shafer and Pete Levitt combined to pitch the last five scoreless innings.

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FULL BOX SCORE

Christian Villanueva had a good first game as Daytona won 4-1.  Villanueva was 2-for-3 with a home run, RBI, and two runs scored.  Javier Baez was 1-for-3 with a triple, RBI, and run scored.  Taylor Davis, Elieser Bonne, and John Andreoli all had a hit a piece in the win.  PJ Francescon started and was really good pitching six innings allowing one run on three hits, while striking out three.  AJ Morris got the call in the seventh and recorded his sixth save of the season.

FULL BOX SCORE

It took extra innings in game two as Daytona ended up on the losing end of the second one 3-1.  Frank Del Valle started and pitched five innings allowing one run and striking out six.  Ryan Searle pitched a scoreless sixth, but Jeffrey Lorick struggled giving up two runs in the eighth inning as he took the loss.  Rebel Ridling accounted for the only run for the Cubs as he hit a home run in the fourth inning.  Javier Baez was 1-for-3 with a stolen base in game two.  John Andreoli, Elieser Bonne, and Rafael Lopez all had a hit in the loss.

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Iowa got shut out on Wednesday losing 3-0 to Nashville.  Ryan Rowland-Smith started and took the loss giving up one run, two earned in five innings.  Jay Jackson threw one perfect inning in relief striking out one and Jeff Beliveau gave up one run in two innings of work.  There was nothing too exciting on the offensive end.  Diory Hernandez was 2-for-4 with two doubles.  New Cub Anthony Recker was 1-for-3 with a double and Adrian Cardenas also had a double in the loss.  Greg Rohan, Dave Sappelt, and Jeff Frazier all had one hit a piece in the shutout loss.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

 

Offensive Struggles Continue For Cubs in Loss

Let’s not kid ourselves, this is pretty bad, sure it’s something that needs to happen in order to get better, but it’s really bad.  The Cubs had one more hit than they had last night, a whopping four, at least two of those hits went for extra bases, bright side right?  Another piece of good news is that the Cubs only struck out seven times as a team tonight, a moral victory if you will.  It’s a shame too as Jeff Samardzija turned in another solid outing as he winds down his first full season as a big league starter.  Shark finished his night after seven innings, he gave up three runs, two earned, on seven hits, he didn’t walk anyone and struck out ten.  To think that at the beginning of the season the Cubs were “taking a chance” by putting Samardzija into the rotation, he has been a bright spot all year-long, and looks to be near the top of the rotation in 2013.  The Cubs had nothing going offensively as Mike Fiers was as equally as impressive as Samardzija, shutting the Cubs down for 7.1 innings.  Starlin Castro and Welington Castillo each had a double in the loss, but at least there was something to get excited about tonight if you were a Cubs fan.  Congrats to Darwin Barney, who tonight set the NL single-season record with his 114th consecutive error-less game at second base.  Wish you weren’t turning into Theriot at the plate, let’s avoid the sweep tomorrow afternoon!

FULL BOX SCORE

Game Highlights:
Barney’s RBI Groundout

Thanks for reading,
– George

August 29, 2012 – Cubs Lineup vs Brewers / No Rizzo

I’m not even going to mention strikeouts tonight, that right there wasn’t a mention.  The Cubs are tired of seeing the Brewers, can’t really blame them as they have lost 12 of 15 meetings this year.  Jeff Samardzija will try to change the Cubs fortunes tonight against Mike Fiers who has emerged as a top of the rotation guy for the Brewers this year.  No Rizzo tonight, here is how the Cubs will line up.

1. DeJesus – RF
2. Valbuena – 3B
3. Castro – SS
4. Soriano – LF
5. LaHair – 1B
6. Castillo – C
7. Jackson – CF
8. Barney – 2B
9. Samardzija – P

Thanks for reading, go Cubs!
– George

Cubs Announce Arizona Fall League Roster

I wish the Arizona Fall League was closer to Chicago, obviously there are reason’s why it’s not, I’m not a complete moron.  I wish it was closer so I could see games because the rosters are made up of some of the best prospects from all over baseball.  There are six teams competing in the league, here is the breakdown of Major League team participation.

Cubs players will be grouped with players from the Orioles, Astros, Tigers, and Dodgers to form the Mesa Solar Sox.  Click here for the full roster, the Cubs will be sending Javier Baez, Matt Szczur, Rubi Silva, Dae-Eun Rhee, Nick Struck, Tony Zych, Kevin Rhoderick, and Zach Rosscup.  The purpose of this league is to get a look at guys, could be guys that didn’t play too much during the season or guys that are ready to jump a level, possibly to the major league level, or are on the bubble for a 40 man roster spot.  If they are not added to the 40-man roster they will be eligible for the Rule 5 draft and could be lost to another team.  The three players vying for a spot on the 40-man roster are Rhee, Rosscup, and Struck, all others are already on the 40-man roster.  So this league is clearly important, it could be make or break for some guys, or it could be an important building block for others. 

One glaring omission is Jorge Soler as he didn’t get too much time to play here in the States this year.  My guess is that he will be playing somewhere this offseason, most likely a winter league as the organization would like to see him get more 2012 at bats.

Thanks for reading,
– George

8/28: Around the Cubs Minor League System

The Cubs minor league recap for Tuesday, August 28.  Daytona was again cancelled because of rain.

FULL BOX SCORE

The AZL Cubs tried to come back, but ended up losing to the Diamondbacks 6-4.  Dillon Maples started and got the loss allowing two unearned runs in one inning.  The Cubs used six more pitchers to get through the rest of the game.  Some of the good pitching performances were Loiger Padron who struck out three and allowed one hit in two innings.  Anthony York struggled giving up three runs in just 0.2 innings.  Daniel Adrian, Jin-Young Kim, and Arturo Maltos-Garcia all combined to strike out eight in just three innings.  Garrett Schlecht was really good night going 4-for-4 with a double, triple, and three runs scored.  Yasiel Balaguert was 2-for-4 with a triple and a run scored.  Trevor Gretzky and Carlos Penalver each had a hit and an RBI.  Justin Marra had a double and Jeff Baez knocked in one run in the loss.

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Boise jumped on Everett early scoring seven runs in the first two innings and ended up winning 7-3.   Stephen Bruno has been outstanding and Tuesday was no different going 3-for-5 with a run scored.  Jeimer Candelario and Gioskar Amaya each hit a home run with Candelario driving in two and Amaya three.  Wilson Contreras and Marco Hernandez had two hits a piece with Contreras having two RBIs.  Carlos Escobar and Darien Martin each had a hit in the win.  Although he didn’t have a hit it was nice to see Albert Almora get back in the lineup.  Pierce Johnson got the start pitching two innings, allowing one unearned run on three hits while striking out three.  Jose Arias pitched the next three innings allowing one run on one hit, while walking four and striking out three.  Brian Smith pitched the next 2.2 innings and got the win not allowing a run and striking out three.  Rafael Diplan notched his first save of the season, striking out two of the four outs he recorded.

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FULL BOX SCORE

Peoria gave up three runs in the ninth and lost to Wisconsin 4-1.  In some really good new Ben Wells got the start in his first game with Peoria since coming back from injury.  He pitched two innings allowing no runs on two hits, with one walk.  Willengton Cruz did a very nice job in relief pitching five innings allowing one run on three hits, while striking out four.  Justin Berg took the loss giving up three runs in the ninth inning.  The Chiefs only had four hits on Tuesday.  Pin-Chieh Chen and Dustin Geiger each had hits as did Timothy Saunders and Jacob Rogers.  Jorge Soler did not have a hit, but walked twice and scored the Chiefs lone run.

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FULL BOX SCORE

Tennessee gave up one run in the ninth to tie the game, but walked-off in the 10th beating Mobile 6-5.  Logan Watkins was the hero hitting the walk off home run in the 10th, he ended the night 2-for-4 with a double and a home run.  Michael Brenly had quite a nice night as well going 3-for-4 with a home run, one RBI and two runs scored.  Matt Cerda was 2-for-4 with a run scored and Michael Burgess had a pinch hit RBI single.  Junior Lake and Rubi Silva each had a hit in the Smokies win.  Austin Kirk got the start going seven strong innings.  He gave up three runs, two earned on seven hits, while walking one and striking out one.  Kevin Rhoderick gave up a run in one inning, but got the ball to Frank Batista with the lead.  Batista blew the save, but got the win.  Tennessee is playing good ball lately and they are now 33-32, but it appears to be too late as they are five out and are one game away from being eliminated.

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FULL BOX SCORE

Iowa lost to Nashville 7-3.  Horacio Ramirez wasn’t good giving up seven runs on nine hits in 4.2 innings.  Miguel Socolovich, Rafael Dolis, and Jairo Asencio combined to pitch 3.1 innings not allowing a run.  Alfredo Amezaga was 2-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs.  Tony Campana and Matt Tolbert each had two hits, with Tolbert scoring a run.  Greg Rohan, Dave Sappelt, and James Adduci each had a hit in the Cubs loss.

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

Cubs Shut Down By Gallardo

Can’t really fault Travis Wood too much in this one, he had a quality start on the mound and was the only Cubs offense in a 4-1 defeat.  In the game preview I mentioned that the goal last night was to strike out less than ten times, goal failed.  The Cubs struck out 11 times last night, the Cubs have struck out 65 times in the last five games against the Brewers, all losses.  Back to Wood, he was solid going seven innings giving up three runs on five hits and striking out four.  Wood’s only mistake was a 3-0 fastball to Jeff Bianchi who launched his first major league home run into the left field bleachers to give the Brewers a 3-0 lead.  The Cubs had no answer for Gallardo as they were only able to record three hits, one of which was a home run by Cubs starter Travis Wood that left the yard.  Everyone on the Cubs seemed lost last night, a lot of that had to do with Gallardo’s dominance, he had every hitter off-balance and guessing, it’s not everyday that Rizzo stikes out three times.  Luis Valbuena and Starlin Castro were the only Cubs to register base hits other than Wood, both singles.  Game three of this four game series will be tonight, let’s make contact!

FULL BOX SCORE

 

Game Highlights:
Travis Wood Postgame
Valbuena’s Great Play
Travis Wood Goes Deep

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs DFA Hinshaw, Promote Blake Parker

So that’s what gets you released, giving up five runs in spectacular fashion.  The Cubs have designated Alex Hinshaw for assignment, and promoted Blake Parker who has just completed his rehab assignment in Iowa.  Parker was a bright spot early in the season and should help a depleted Cubs pen.

Thanks for reading,
– George

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