Results tagged ‘ Carlos Villanueva ’

Series Preview – Giants @ Cubs; April 11 – April 14, 2013

Ah, Spring in Chicago, either it’s great or horrible, usually no in between.  Hopefully the weather cooperates today, and all weekend as the Cubs welcome the defending champion San Francisco Giants to town for a four game set.  Should be some great baseball on display this weekend, hopefully for both teams.  As usual the Giants boast of formidable pitching staff that will most definitely pose a challenge for the Cubs anemic offense.

Last Series:

The Cubs split the two game series with the Brewers as the final game was rained out.

The Giants swept the Rockies in a three game series at home.

Game Times and Broadcast Information:

  • Thursday, April 11, 2013 – 1:20 PM CST on CSN Chicago
  • Friday, April 12, 2013 – 1:20 PM CST on CSN Chicago
  • Wednesday, April 13, 2013 – 12:05 PM CST on FOX
  • Sunday, April 14, 2013 – 1:20 PM CST on WGN TV

Starting Pitchers Scheduled:

Cubs:

Game One – Scott Feldman (0-1, 7.71)
– Career vs. Giants (4 appearances, 2 GS)  (0-3, 5.54)

Game Two – Carlos Villanueva (0-0, 1.35)
– Career vs. Giants (13 appearances, 1 GS) (2-1, 4.15)

Game Three – Jeff Samardzija (1-1, 2.63)
– Career vs. Giants (6 appearances, 1 GS) (0-0, 2.53)

Game Four – Edwin Jackson (0-2, 5.73)
– Career vs. Giants (5 appearances, 4 GS) (2-2, 4.73)

Giants:

Game One – Ryan Vogelsong (0-1, 8.44)
– Career vs. Cubs (15 appearances, 9 GS)  (4-5, 5.73)

Game Two – Matt Cain (0-1, 8.38)
– Career vs. Cubs (13 GS) (6-2, 2.45)

Game Three – Madison Bumgarner (2-0, 1.32)
– Career vs. Cubs (6 GS) (3-2, 2.79)

Game Four – Tim Lincecum (1-0, 4.91)
– Career vs. Cubs (10 GS) (4-4, 3.43)

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not:

Something happened in the Brewers series, the Cubs found some offense, not only offense, but clutch offense.  In both games the Cubs mounted comebacks, one successful, and one not so successful.  Regardless, it was good to see guys having good at bats and driving the ball when they needed to.  Welington Castillo has been a consistent threat at the plate since day one for the Cubs, he’s hitting .381 on the season with two doubles, a home run, and five RBI’s.  Nate Schierholtz is also swinging a hot bat as he is hitting .304 on the season, and sports an impressive .385 OBP.  Alfonso Soriano is scuffling, he’s back to missing his pitch and then getting himself out on the pitchers pitch.  He’s hitting .194 on the season and has no extra base hits, or RBI’s.  The Cubs pitching is starting to show some dents, but for the most part the starters have been great.  Hector Rondon has been very good out of the pen, while Shawn Camp has struggled of late.

It’s a former Cub that is leading the offensive attack for the Giants, Angel Pagan is hitting .361 in the early going.  Pablo Sandoval is also swinging a hot bat hitting .345 on the season with two home runs and six RBI’s, and has only struck out once in 29 at bats.  Brandon Belt is struggling at the plate as he is only hitting .148 with only two extra base hits and no RBI’s.  The Cubs won’t see Barry Zito in this series, usually that’s a bad thing, but not this year, Zito started on his comeback trail last year, and has continued it this year as he hasn’t given up a run so far this year in two starts over fourteen innings.  Ryan Vogelsong and Matt Cain have been knocked around a bit as Vogelsong has a 8.44 ERA, and Cain has a 8.38 ERA, when was the last time you saw that?

Bold Prediction:

The Cubs usually play up to their competition, at home at least, I think they play well enough to split this four game series.  If they get a surprisingly solid performance from Feldman and Villanueva they might take three of four.

Thanks for reading, go Cubs!
– George

Marmol Coaster Comes Off Tracks in Loss to Braves

April 6 line score

Full Box Score

Over the course of 162 games there will be losses that are harder to take than others, this is one of those losses, in fact this might be the toughest one of the season.  After an outstanding performance from Carlos Villanueva the Cubs held a 5-1 Braves Walk off 4-6lead in the 8th inning.  A poor outing from Kyuji Fujikawa made the game close and another Carlos Marmol meltdown gave the Braves a walk-off victory.  All of this could have been avoided if the Cubs capitalized on a golden opportunity in the top of the 8th.  The Cubs loaded the bases with no outs and failed to push across a run, that usually comes back to haunt you, and tonight is definitely did.

At The Plate – The Cubs finally found some offense, unfortunately it was the failed opportunities that will be remembered in this one.  The Cubs pounded out thirteen hits, a season high by far, but unfortunately that wasn’t enough.  Every Cubs hitter in the starting lineup registered at least one hit, even starting pitcher Carlos Villanueva.  Anthony Rizzo got things going as he was 2-for-5 with a home run, two RBI’s, and a run scored.  Nate Schierholtz had another solid game going 2-for-5 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored.  Welington Castillo and Luis Valbuena also had two hits with Valbuena hitting his first home run of the season.

On The Mound – A tale of two games for sure, Carlos Villanueva got the start and was outstanding.  Villanueva went 6.2 innings giving up one run on six hits while walking two and striking out six.  Kyuji Fujikawa had a rough inning as he could only throw his fastball for strikes.  Fujikawa gave up three runs in one inning of work on four hits while walking one and striking out one.  Carlos Marmol was a disaster, he entered the ninth with a lead and could only record one out before the game was over.  Marmol gave up two runs, on two hits, a solo home run to B.J. Upton and a solo home run to Justin Upton.  Look for Marmol to be officially removed from the closer roll as early as before first pitch tomorrow.

Up Next – Jeff Samardzija takes the hill for the Cubs in the series finale against Tim Hudson at 12:35 PM CST.  Samardzija looks to build off his dominant performance in the season opener.

Stat Of The Night – Coming into the night the Cubs had 16 hits on the season, they registered 13 tonight.

April 6 box score

 

April 6 box score 1

 

Game Highlights:

Schierholtz RBI Single
Luis Valbuena goes deep
Rizzo’s two-run shot

Thanks for reading,
– George

April 6, 2013 – Cubs @ Braves Lineups!

The Cubs look to get their offense moving in the right direction tonight against Julio Teheran and the Braves.  Carlos Villanueva makes his Cubs debut against a potent Braves lineup.

April 6 lineup

 

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Still Searching for Offense in Loss to Braves

april 5 line score

More of the same from the Cubs offense tonight in Atlanta as they could only manage five hits and one run in a 4-1 loss.  Sure Mike Minor was pounding the zone, but Cubs hitters made things way too easy on Braves pitching by Rizzo 4-5having way too many aggressive at bats.  The Cubs have two losses now, both with the “lefty lineup” on display, meaning DeJesus and Schierholtz on the bench.  Not saying that they would have made a difference, but the Cubs always seem to struggle against lefties.  Scott Feldman was all over the place, but battled, the result was being over 100 pitches and out the game before the end of the fifth inning.  It’s not the end of the World, the Cubs are 2-2 which is probably a fair record at this point, if not better than it should be given the offensive struggles.

At The Plate – Another night, another low number in the hit column for the Cubs.  Alfonso Soriano, Scott Hairston, Welington Castillo, and Alberto Gonzalez were all 1-for-3.  Hairston provided the only offense of the night with a solo home run in the fifth inning off of Minor.

On The Mound – Scott Feldman made his Cubs debut and really never settled into a groove.  For the most part he was able to pitch around trouble but couldn’t get out of the 5th.  Feldman went 4.2 innings giving up four runs on five hits while walking four and striking out one.  The bright spot was the bullpen, Michael Bowden and Hector Rondon shut the door over the last 2.1 innings but it was to no avail.

Up Next – Carlos Villanueva will make his Cubs debut opposite Julio Teheran at 6:00 PM CST.  The Cubs will have their hands full again as Teheran is a high-class talent that will give them fits if they aren’t patient.

Stat Of The Night – The Cubs have 16 hits in the first four games of the season.

April 5 box score

 

April 5 box score 1

 

Game Highlights:

Scott Hairston goes deep

Thanks for reading,
– George

Series Preview: Cubs @ Braves; April 5 – April 7, 2013

Consider this a stiff test for the Cubs, nothing against the Pirates, but the Braves are a different animal.  The weather should be much nicer than it was in Pittsburgh so hopefully that means that Cubs bats will heat up with the temperatures as they have been cold as ice so far.  That said, the Cubs enter the series with a 2-1 record, the same as the Braves, below you will find all the important information pertaining to the upcoming series, everything you need to know in one convenient place.

Last Series:

Cubs won two out of three against the Pirates in Pittsburgh

Braves won two out of three against the Phillies at home

Game Times and Broadcast Information:

  • Friday, April 5, 2013 – 6:30 PM CST on CSN+ (click to find your channel), MLBN
  • Saturday, April 6, 2013 – 6:10 PM CST on WGN TV
  • Sunday, April 7, 2013 – 12:35 PM CST on CSN Chicago

Starting Pitchers Scheduled:

Cubs:

Game OneScott Feldman (0-0, 0.00)
– Career vs. Atlanta (1 GS)  (0-0, 2.57 ERA)

Game TwoCarlos Villanueva (0-0, 0.00)
– Career vs. Atlanta (10 appearances, 1 GS) (1-2, 7.20 ERA)

Game ThreeJeff Samardzija (1-0, 0.00)
– Career vs. Atlanta (8 appearances, 2 GS) (2-0, 2.66 ER)

Braves:

Game One – Mike Minor (0-0, 0.00)
– Career vs. Cubs (4 GS)  (4-0, 4.30 ERA)

Game Two – Julio Teheran (0-0, 0.00)
– Career vs. Cubs (First appearance)

Game Three - Tim Hudson (0-0, 6.23)
– Career vs. Cubs (6 GS) (2-1, 3.44 ER)

Who’s Hot / Who’s Not:

For the Cubs, the entire offense is frigid, only scoring six runs over the first three games of the season.  They aren’t getting hits either as they have the worst team batting average in all of baseball at .121, they don’t ask how, just how many when it comes to wins….or something like that.  Closest thing resembling a hot hitter would be Nate Schierholtz, Nate had a huge two-run homer yesterday, and is hitting .333 on the season.  The Cubs pitching has been fantastic, well Cubs pitching not including anyone named Carlos Marmol.  The Cubs are 8th in the Majors with a 2.08 team ERA, a big reason why they are 2-1.

The Braves have as many home runs as the Cubs do runs (six).  Freddie Freeman is on a mission in the early going, hitting .500 (5-for-10) with one double, one home run, and six RBI’s.  One of the Braves newcomers isn’t finding things so easy, B.J. Upton has been slow out of the gate going 0-for-11 with seven strikeouts.  The Braves are hovering around the middle of the pack when it comes to team ERA with a respectable 3.00, surprisingly Tim Hudson isn’t helping as his only start was a rough one where he gave up three runs in 4.1 innings of work.

Bold Prediction:

Look for the Cubs bats to get healthier in this series despite having to face two young stars in Minor and Teheran, and one solid veteran in Hudson.  Unfortunately the Braves will continue their hot hitting and take two out of three from the Cubs this weekend.

Thanks for reading, go Cubs!
– George

March 7, 2013 – Cubs Lineup vs. White Sox

Always want to beat the White Sox, even if it doesn’t count.  Here is how the Cubs will start things off today, the White Sox will use the DH, the Cubs will not, and the Sox had to get permission to do so from the Cubs, Spring Training folks.

1. David DeJesus, CF
2. Darwin Barney, 2B
3. Nate Schierholtz, RF
4. Alfonso Soriano, LF
5. Luis Valbuena, 3B
6. Welington Castillo, C
7. Brad Nelson, 1B
8. Edwin Maysonet, SS
9. Carlos Villanueva, P

Thanks for reading,
– George

Late Cubs Rally Falls Short

Cactus League Header

Cubs-Giants Line Score 3-2-13

Full Box Score

  Every time the Cubs fought back in this one the Giants would tack on a couple of insurance runs to keep the Cubs at bay, the Cubs final push came in the ninth inning as they scored twice, but ran MLB: Spring Training-Chicago Cubs at San Francisco Giantsout of outs as they fell to the Giants 9-7.  Carlos Villanueva made his second appearance of the Spring, and had a much better performance.  Villanueva was able to make it through three innings, giving up one run on four hits while walking one, and striking out two.  It was nice to see Villanueva find the strike zone repeatedly in this one, I’ll take giving up hits over walks any day, and he was able to work around the hits for the most part.  Barret Loux came on in relief and didn’t have it today, he tossed two innings, giving up four runs, all earned on three hits while walking one and striking out one, Loux was hung with the loss.  Jaye Chapman also struggled today as he surrendered two runs on two hits in his inning of work.  After having a rough Spring debut, Robert Whitenack bounced back nicely today as he pitched a scoreless inning, walking one and striking out one.

  The Cubs were once again productive at the plate as they scored seven runs while pounding out ten hits.  Brian Bogusevic got the start in right field today and was stellar at the plate going 2-for-2 with a triple, a walk, and two runs scored.  Dioner Navarro only had one hit but he had a productive day, he ended the day 1-for-3 with a walk, and two RBI’s.  Steve Clevenger got the start at first base today, yes first base, and he did his best Anthony Rizzo impersonation going 2-for-3 with two RBI’s, Clevenger is having a solid Spring at the plate, hitting .500 (4-for-8) in the early going.  Brett Jackson didn’t start, but had an eventful day nonetheless going 1-for-1 with a double, and a stolen base.  Jackson is having a resurgent Spring, and a lot of that can be contributed to a new swing, and new-found confidence, he his slated to start 2013 in Iowa, but is doing everything he can to make that decision anything but a given, he’s hitting .375 (3-for-8) with two triples, and a double this Spring.

Cubs-Giants box Score 3-2-13

Cubs-Giants Pitching Box Score 3-2-13

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Let Big Early Lead Slip Away in Loss to Dodgers

Cactus League Header

Cubs-Dodgers Line Score 2-25-13

Full Box Score

  The Cubs used the long ball early and often against Chad Billingsley and the Dodgers staff to build a 6-2 lead through three innings.  Nate Schierholtz hit a solo shot in the Castillofirst, and then Welington Castillo went back to back with Darnell McDonald in the third inning.  McDonald padded the RBI numbers with a three run homer, a no doubter.  Unfortunately that was about it for the Cubs offense as they couldn’t scratch across another run the rest of the afternoon.  Carlos Villanueva made his Cubs debut and it could have been better as he struggled with his command.  Villanueva couldn’t make in through the first inning as he walked two guys, and gave up two runs in two-thirds of an inning.  Blake Parker and Barret Loux had solid outings, each turning in a scoreless effort.  Robert Whitenack struggled today, giving up three runs, while not allowing a hit, yes he struggled with command as well, walking two in two-thirds of an inning.  The news of the day came from Dontrelle Willis, not because he made his debut, but because he only threw seven pitches before leaving with what is being described as shoulder stiffness, he took the loss.

Cubs-Dodgers Box Score 2-25-2013

Cubs-Dodgers Pitchers Box Score 2-25-2013

Game Highlights:

Darnell McDonald’s Three-Run Bomb
Dontrelle Willis leaves with an Injury
Welington Castillo’s Solo Shot
Nate Schierholtz Goes Deep

Thanks for reading,
– George

Sveum Sees Feldman in Rotation Already

I’m not going to say that Scott Feldman making the Cubs rotation is surprise, I just expected to be writing about it at the end of a very competitive camp, not before it even starts.  Patrick Mooney reported today that Dale Sveum has penciled Scott Feldman into the rotation behind “the big three” of Garza, Samardzija, and Edwin Jackson.  Yes, barring a step back from Samardzija, a blown apart Garza elbow, and an Edwin Jackson disaster, the Cubs can actually be considered as a team that has a big three at the top of the rotation.  At this point, if you look at the top three for the other teams in the Central Division, I like the Cubs.  They have three power arms at the top, and now, edwinjacksoncubsslideaccording to Sveum they have Scott Feldman following them.  “Feldman’s going to be one of the starters,” Sveum said Thursday. “There’s an above-average chance Baker’s going to probably start a little bit late, just because you don’t want to really rush him. There’s no need for anything like that.”  The words from Sveum today caught me a little off guard because the one word that I think describes this Cubs camp the best is competition, not saying there still won’t be plenty of it, I just expected more of it before naming Feldman to the rotation.  As Mooney says in his article, both Feldman and Baker were promised a chance to redeem themselves this year as starters, so one would think that gives them the inside track.  Not so fast, if we have learned anything from this Cubs organization since Theo took over is that they are calculated, everything they do has a reason or four behind it.  Sveum continued with the comment of “there are no guarantees” in the rotation behind Garza, Samardzija, and Jackson, so what Sveum is saying in my opinion is that Feldman, and Baker for that matter, will be slotted in the rotation but if they give the coaching staff any reason to doubt that they belong there they will be bumped for someone who deserves it.  So my final thought on this is expect there to be plenty of competition all Spring long, and don’t be surprised if Feldman doesn’t start the season as a starter, for my money, I think he will, but don’t count out Carlos Villanueva, or Travis Wood quite yet.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Sources: Cubs to Sign Carlos Villanueva

According to Jon Heyman the Cubs have agreed to sign pitcher Carlos Villanueva.  Villanueva, 29 has spent time as both a reliever and a starting pitcher.  Cub fans probably remember him during his stint with the Brewers in which he did most of his work out the pen.  Last year with the Blue Jays he made 16 starts and over the last two years he has made 29.  He will be looking for the opportunity to win a spot in the rotation and hopefully have a chance to be a starter.  No news yet on the terms of the deal.  As more becomes known we will let you know.

George Update:

Deal is confirmed, 2 years $10M for Villanueva, here is more from mlbtraderumors.com

Villanueva, 29, pitched to a 4.16 ERA with 8.8 K/9 and 3.3 BB/9 in 125 1/3 innings spread across 16 starts and 22 relief appearances for the Blue Jays last season. He’s made 29 starts and 42 relief appearances over the last two seasons and has proven capable in both roles. Earlier this offseason we heard Villanueva was reportedly seeking the opportunity to make 30 starts next season, an opportunity the Cubs can provide.
Read more at http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/#em7qv4cy58jEhbbl.99

Thanks for Reading,
-Mark

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