Results tagged ‘ Pedro Strop ’
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 innings, 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.
Two games into his Cubs career, Jason Hammel is 2-0, both wins coming against the NL Central rival Pirates. Hammel was brilliant once again, as he worked seven strong innings, giving up three runs on three hits (all solo HR’s, more on that later), while walking one, and striking out six. Pedro Strop made things interesting in the ninth as he gave up two more solo home runs to make things closer than they needed to be. The Pirates had six hits tonight, five of which left the ballpark, and the Cubs still won, baseball.
More good signs from the Cubs offense in this one as well, the Cubs scored seven times on fourteen hits in the win. (Insert Emilio Bonifacio had two hits sentence). Anthony Rizzo is scorching hot right now, he went 4-for-5 with two doubles, an RBI, and two runs scored, he’s now hitting .375 on the season. Mike Olt, finally getting a start, responded in a big way, he went 2-for-5 with his second home run of the season, three RBI’s, and a run scored. Same goes for Junior Lake, as he went 1-for-4 with his first home run of the season, two RBI’s, and a run scored.
** PHOTO CREDIT: BRIAN KERSEY/GETTY IMAGES
Such a tough evening, on one hand you have to be thrilled with the Cubs coming back two different times in this one, on the other, throw strikes!!! The Cubs offense was up to the task tonight, but the pitching was dreadful, it started with Edwin Jackson, and ended with Pedro Strop, and James Russell.
Edwin Jackson “walked” away with a no decision in this one, and probably deserved worse. Jackson worked 4.2 innings, giving up six runs on nine hits, while walking four (yuck), and striking out four. Pedro Strop, who got the loss, worked a third of an inning, giving up one run, while walking two, and striking out one. The issue in this one was James Russell coming on and failing to do his job against Pedro Alvarez, he walked Alvarez to load the bases and Russel Martin delivered a game winning sac-fly.
Starlin Castro! What a night from Castro, he was 3-for-4 with two home runs, four RBI’s, and two runs scored. It was Castro’s first time hitting two home runs in a major league game, it was awesome to see, Castro is now hitting .310 on the season, look at that. Emilio Bonifacio continues to get hits, almost every time up to the plate, he was 3-for-5 with an RBI, a stolen base, and a run scored. Anthony Rizzo is also going well at the plate right now, he was 2-for-3 with a walk, an RBI, and a run scored in the loss.
I’ll leave you with this… STOP BUNTING! Goodnight.
** PHOTO CREDIT: ANDREW NELLES/AP
The Cubs did some good things today, getting hits with runners in scoring position was not one of them. But about those good things, the Cubs pitching was stellar, and their defense was just as good. Jeff Samardzija loves facing the Pirates, especially in Pittsburgh, one year after going eight scoreless against the Buccos, he went seven scoreless but settled for a no decision. Pedro Strop, Justin Grimm, and James Russell all did their job out of the bullpen, Carlos Villanueva, not so much. Villanueva faced one batter, and that was it, Neil Walker blasted a walk-off home run to move the Cubs to 0-1 on the young season.
The Cubs struggles were front and center at the plate as they went 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position, yikes. They also struck out a lot, eleven times to be exact as they were baffled by Francisco Liriano all day long. I did like the Cubs approach today though, as they worked deep counts and were able to get to the Pirates pen by the 7th inning, it just didn’t work out. Emilio Bonifacio had a big day at the plate in his debut as he went 4-for-5 with a double, the Cubs as a whole only had six hits in the loss.
* Photo credit: GENE PUSKAR/AP
Yeah, slop-fest. I wasn’t quite sure how to spell that in the title, but it seemed appropriate given that this was, indeed, a slop-fest. The Cubs only had one error on the day, but the Rockies really messed things up and had five, yet still won the game. But the news of the day, as it is almost every day, is Javier Baez showing off his unfathomable power, everyone is really excited.
At the Plate:
- Josh Vitters, hello. Vitters entered the game in the sixth and ended the day going 2-for-2 with a run scored, and a dropped fly ball, filling up the score sheet.
- Javier Baez (!), Baez went 1-for-3 with his second home run of the spring season, an opposite field shot which continued to fuel the inter-webs desire for him to start with the Cubs… sorry, won’t happen, hooray team control!
- George Kottaras has the backup catching spot locked down in my opinion, not only because we share the first name. Kottaras was 1-for-2 with his first home run of the season, which immediately followed Baez’s shot.
On the Mound:
- Jeff Samardzija got the start today and was roughed up a bit, but was able to escape with a no decision. Shark went three innings giving up three runs on four hits while walking one, and striking out one.
- Jose Veras, the new Cubs closer, worked a scoreless inning, which was a nice rebound after his not so great debut.
- Pedro Strop also worked a scoreless inning, and didn’t walk or strikeout anyone, madness.
- Chris Rusin was having a pretty solid outing until he lost command in the fateful seventh inning. Rusin worked 2.2 innings giving up three runs on three hits while walking two, and striking out one.
- Armando Rivero continues his push to make the Cubs bullpen with another solid outing, but he did have some trouble to work out of. Rivero worked a scoreless inning giving up three hits while striking out one.
Thanks to Brett at Bleacher Nation for the video
Finally, Spring Training is about to begin. The Cubs open their brand new facility in Mesa, and the 2014 Spring schedule tomorrow afternoon against the Diamondbacks. Jeff Samardzija gets the start amid trade rumors that are still swirling given the perceived stalled contract negotiations between him and the Cubs. The Cubs will be opposed by Bronson Arroyo and a power laden D-Backs lineup that was bolstered in the off-season with the acquisition of Mark Trumbo who will play LF for Arizona tomorrow.
Here are the lineups, and the extra pitchers that both teams will be carrying. For the image impaired that are reading, the Cubs plan to use Wesley Wright, Alberto Cabrera, Justin Grimm, Pedro Strop, Blake Parker, Hector Rondon, and Jose Veras in addition to Shark. The game begins at 2:00 PM CST, and will be televised (!) on WGN.
The Cubs are getting a head start on the trade deadline it appears as per Keith Law they have traded Scott Feldman and Steve Clevenger to Baltimore for Jake Arrieta, Pedro Strop, and international bonus money. Feldman, who is a free agent after this season is having a tremendous 2013 going 7-6 with a 3.46 ERA, the Cubs struck while the iron was hot. Sure the return doesn’t look like much but the Cubs are banking on the two guys they are getting in return to figure it out. Both Arrieta and Strop have talent, but both have issues finding the strike zone which has led to some pretty bad numbers recently. Strop was outstanding in 2012, but still struggles with control, his 7.35 ERA this year would point to his inability to pitch around walks as they are still there, and more common than in 2012. The Cubs plan heading into this season was to sign Feldman, see if they can compete and if they didn’t then deal Feldman for assets, mission accomplished? Only time will tell, as with so many other things with this team at the moment. More to come.