Results tagged ‘ Matt Szczur ’

One Bad Inning Does in Cubs

Cubs Final 4-14

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Jake Arrieta had his typical no hit stuff against the Reds once again, at least until the fourth inning.  The Reds scored three times on five singles in the fourth inning en route to a 3-2 victory to even up the three game series.  The Cubs didn’t exactly go quietly, that seems to be their thing this year.  Welington Castillo smacked a pinch hit homer in the 8th inning to bring the Cubs to within one, but they couldn’t get any closer.  The Cubs had two more guys on base in the eighth and the ninth, but couldn’t come up with a big hit, this time.  Being able to come back in games is a nice thing to be able to do, you just don’t want to be doing it every night.

At the Plate:

  • Welington Castillo didn’t start but probably had the best game, he was 1-for-1 with a pinch hit dinger, two RBI’s, and a run scored.
  • Matt Szczur, also coming off the bench, had two plate appearances, and walked each time.
  • Dexter Fowler, Anthony Rizzo, Jorge Soler, and Starlin Castro had the other hits, one each.

On the Mound:

  • Jake Arrieta got the start, and was just fine except for that fateful fourth inning, he worked 6.2 innings, giving up three runs on seven hits while walking one, and striking out five.
  • Zac Rosscup made his 2015 debut, he worked 1.1 scoreless innings, he walked one, and struck out two.
  • Pedro Strop worked a scoreless inning to give the Cubs a chance in the ninth, he struck out one in the process.

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Opening Night Roster Taking Shape

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The Cubs have been busy so far today, mostly off the field.  The club has announced that Brian Schlitter, Junior Lake, and Zac Rosscup have all been optioned to Iowa.  The news was expected for the most part as all three guys have options left, there was an outside chance that Lake would make the team.  What this does mean is that Matt Szczur is all but a lock for the opening night roster, as Cubs beat writers pointed out on twitter, it’s down to three guys for two spots (Szczur, Sweeney, and Herrera).  I think Szczur and Jonathan Herrera have the edge right now, Szczur can play all over the outfield with a tremendous glove, and Hererra would be the only the second guy off the bench that can play the infield.  This leaves Sweeney as the odd man out, the only thing that he really brings to the table is the left handed bat, but I don’t think that is enough to keep him around.  The Cubs also made it clear today that they will be starting the season with three catchers, so Miguel Montero, David Ross, and Welington Castillo will all be in Chicago.

The bullpen is also starting to come together, but the question of what do with Edwin Jackson remains.  Jackson will not be a member of the five man staff, and will not act in some sort of piggyback role with Travis Wood, so what to do?  The Cubs have already made a huge financial commitment to Jackson so cutting him doesn’t seem to be an option, but the Cubs could admit the mistake and move on.  If I had to guess, I think that Drake Britton will be waived, and the bullpen will have Jackson as a long guy which means the Cubs will carry only one left-handed arm in the pen, Phil Coke.  Still a lot to figure out as we are now only four days from the start of the season, tingly feeling.

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Szczur Hits One Into the Parking Lot (VIDEO)

Oh, I see you Matt Szczur, that was a big boy homer right there.  Matt Szczur is making a lot of noise in camp, today might have been the exclamation point as he destroyed a Derek Holland 1-1 offering into the parking lot.  This kid has a place on the opening night roster in my opinion.

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Spring Fever – March 26, 2015 (Cubs Lineup, Broadcast Info)

Bryant Dinger

Bright lights for the Cubs tonight as they battle the Angels on ESPN tonight, first pitch is at 6:05 PM CST.  The lineup the Cubs are trotting out tonight is worthy of the National media, and I’m sure there will be endless talk about how the Cubs are handling Kris Bryant, so tune in…  Eric Jokisch gets the ball for the Cubs, he will face off against veteran right-hander Jered Weaver, and a pretty regular season looking Angels lineup.  The Cubs made cuts earlier today, no surprises really (Almora, and Schwarber included), the roster now stands at 40.

1. Baez – 2B
2. Russell – SS
3. Bryant – LF
4. Soler – RF
5. Rizzo – 1B
6. Olt – 3B
7. Castillo – C
8. Jokisch – SP
9. Szczur – CF

Impressions?  Kris Bryant is getting his first start in LF this spring, and Joe Maddon is once again hitting the pitcher 8th, obviously something he likes to do. Also of note, Chris Denorfia is battling a hamstring issue that will most likely keep him off the opening day roster, so Matt Szczur has another great opportunity to get noticed tonight.

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Cubs No Match For Taijuan Walker

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I’m not even mad.  Taijuan Walker put on a pitching clinic last night in what had to be the fastest spring training game in the History of ever.  The Cubs couldn’t do much of anything against the young right-hander, and they could only manage six hits in the 3-2 loss.  Travis Wood wasn’t terrible, he just couldn’t keep up in the five innings he worked.  Wood gave up three runs on five hits, while walking two, and striking out three, his spring ERA sits at 4.19 which is fine.  The pen did some work last night, Pedro Strop, Phil Coke, and Hector Rondon combined to work three scoreless innings, giving up one hit while walking two, and striking out four.

Fake Rally

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Spring Fever – March 18, 2015 (Cubs Lineup, Broadcast Info)

Arrieta FIRE

Jake Arrieta is back at it today as the Cubs take on the Dodgers at 3:05 PM CST on MLB.tv (with paid subscription), the game can also be heard on Cubs.com.  The plan is for Arrieta to go four innings or so, obviously it depends on pitch count, and how well he is throwing the ball.  The Cubs lineup this afternoon is intriguing because Matt Szczur is hitting 5th, the kid has a real shot at making this team, I hope he does.  No Kris Bryant today as he is still resting his shoulder, not sure if he will make it in later today as there is no DH.

1. Coghlan – LF
2. Alcantara – 3B
3. Rizzo – 1B
4. Soler – RF
5. Szczur – CF
6. La Stella – 2B
7. Ross – C
8. Russell – SS
9. Arrieta – SP (Hitting today)

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Spring Fever – March 17, 2015 (Cubs Lineup, Broadcast Info)

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day, if you’re into that kind of thing.  Jason Hammel gets the ball for the Cubs as the host the defending AL champ the Kansas City Royals, still sounds weird saying that.  First pitch today is at 3:05 PM CST, there is no TV that I’m aware of, but the game can be heard through mlb.com.  It’s been a rough spring for Hammel, I don’t think it’s more than just working on his stuff, but it would be nice to see him find a groove today.  Three big surprises from camp so far are in the lineup today, Mike Olt, Junior Lake, and Matt Szczur, all are fighting for spots on the opening day roster.

1. Fowler – CF
2. Denorfia – DH
3. Rizzo – 1B
4. Castro – SS
5. Montero – C
6. Lake – RF
7. Baez – 2B
8. Olt – 3B
9. Szczur – LF

SP – Jason Hammel

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Szczur Blasts Third Dinger of the Spring (VIDEO)

I mentioned it before the game today, Matt Szczur is doing everything right so far this spring, and Joe Maddon has to be taking notice.  Szczur ripped his third homer of the spring this afternoon in the Cubs’ 10-5 victory over the Brewers, enjoy the video.

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Spring Fever – March 14, 2015 (Cubs Lineups, Broadcast Info)

Hendricks

Two more games today as the Cubs take on the Athletics at 2:05 PM CST in Vegas, and also battle the Brewers at 3:05 PM CST.  Kyle Hendricks gets the ball against the A’s, the game can be listened to through mlb.tv, but there is no TV.  Back in Arizona, Edwin Jackson will take the mound against the Brewers, the game can be watched, and listened to on mlb.tv with a subscription.  It’s a big start for Jackson as he needs to show this coaching staff something or else he will not be in the rotation, I still think he loses out to Travis Wood.

vs. Athletics – 2:05 PM CST -Vegas

1. Fowler – CF
2. Rizzo – DH
3. Soler – RF
4. Bryant 3B
5. Lake – LF
6. La Stella – 2B
7. Valaika – 1B
8. Teagarden – C
9. Herrera – SS

SP – Kyle Hendricks

@ Brewers – 3:05 PM CST

1. Coghlan – LF
2. Alcantara – 2B
3. Castro – SS
4. Sweeney – DH
5. Olt – 3B
6. Baxter – 1B
7. Castillo – C
8. Chambers – RF
9. Szczur – CF

SP – Edwin Jackson

Some things to keep an eye on for today.  Both Matt Szczur, and Junior Lake have had a really good spring, both guys are vying for bench spots on the 2015 opening day roster.  While I think Szczur has the edge because of his defense, I’ve been very impressed with Junior Lake’s purpose at the plate, it clearly has carried over from Winter League ball.  Joe Maddon said not to read too much into Rizzo batting second, and he’s there again today, so start reading into it.  Mike Olt is getting every day at bats right now because he has earned them, he’s winning the third base job with his Spring so far, he needs to keep progressing to nail it down.

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Wada Leaves Early as Cubs Fall to Indians

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Tsuyoshi Wada was a pleasant surprise for the Cubs last season, so far this season has been one setback after another for the left-hander.  Wada, who has been slowed by hamstring and groin injuries this spring, left today’s game early with a re-aggravation of said going injury.  It’s a tough pill to swallow for Wada who is in the running for the 5th spot in the rotation and/or a bullpen spot.  Another battle heating up is the one for the 5th outfield spot, and right Matt Szczur is doing everything he can to steal it.  Szczur led the game off today with his second home run of the spring, he’s having good at bats, can steal a base or two, and can pick it in center, all good things to have off the bench.

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