Cubs Pounded by the Padres in Peoria – Cubs 4 Padres 14

Spring Training Game Twenty-Four – Cubs 4 Padres 14
WP – Aaron Harang (2-1) LP – Matt Garza (0-3) Save – None

Q’s crew had a very rough afternoon in Peoria. Not only did the pitching staff allow 14 runs for the second straight game but two of the pitchers that figure in the Cubs’ plans for the upcoming season had bad outings.

Matt Garza struggled with his command. Garza had trouble with his location once again and allowed three runs on three hits in three innings of work. Garza also issued three walks and finished his afternoon in the bullpen. Garza left with a tight left hamstring after having trouble with the landing spot on the Peoria Sports Complex mound.

Jeff Samardzija put together the best outing of the five pitchers Mike Quade used Saturday. After giving up a leadoff single, Samardzija struck out the side.

Braden Looper, who was one of the favorites to land the fifth spot in the rotation, gave up eight runs on eight hits in just two innings of work (53 pitches, 31 for strikes). The big hit off Looper was a grand slam by Chase Headley in the sixth inning. Looper served up two homers, walked two and struck out three.

Jeff Stevens and Scott Maine did not fare any better than Garza and Looper. Stevens gave up a pair of runs on one hit and two walks in his inning of work. Maine served up the Padres’ third longball of the game but struck out three in the eighth.

While the Padres’ offense was busy taking batting practice (14 runs on 15 hits with seven walks) against Cubs’ pitching, Q’s offense was non-existent.

The Cubs managed only five hits with all four of their runs coming on one swing of the bat … a grand slam in the eighth off the bat of Max Ramirez. Quade ran out a majority of the players that figures to begin the season on the Cubs’ 25-man active roster and once again the players did not perform.

On the error front, the Cubs were credited with only one error but committed more miscues than the official scorekeeper kept track of Saturday.

Again, wins and loses in the spring are not important but at some point Q’s group of players must start playing better baseball.

Saturday was another frustrating day for the Cubs. Before Saturday’s game, Mike Quade talked about the Cubs needing to improve in certain areas … those areas should have expanded after Saturday.

Matt Garza’s afternoon started on a negative note and went downhill from there. Garza could not locate his fastball and rarely hit his spots.

Eric Patterson led off the game with a triple to left and scored on a sacrifice fly to right off the bat of Jason Bartlett. Garza got out of the first without allowing another hit and retired the Padres in order in the second.

Garza labored through a long third inning. Nick Hundley walked to start the inning. Aaron Harang sacrificed him to second and Hundley scored on a double to right off the bat of Eric Patterson … Patterson should have ended up at third.

Garza retired Bartlett on a fly out to right, Patterson advanced to third and scored on a double to left by Orlando Hudson. Garza walked Ryan Ludwick and Chase Headley to load the bases.

Garza struck out Brad Hawpe to end the inning.

The Cubs lifted Garza after the third inning. An uneven mound led to Garza straining his left hamstring. Garza finished getting his work in during a session with Lester Strode in the pen.

Jeff Samardzija got through the four without allowing a run.

Braden Looper took over in the fifth … and was horrible. Bartlett singled to center to start the inning. Orlando Hudson hit a ground-rule double to left center. With runners on second and third with no outs, Looper struck out Ryan Ludwick swinging on a 3-2 pitch. Chase Headley walked to load the bases.

Brad Hawpe singled to center and plated Bartlett and Hudson … 5-0 Padres.

Looper recovered and struck out Cameron Maybin and Nick Hundley to end the inning.

The game went from bad to worse in the sixth.

Oscar Salazar and Aaron Cunningham reached on back-to-back singles to start the inning. Cunningham stole second with Jesus Guzman at the plate. Guzman lined out to Scales at second for the first out.

Logan Forsythe drove in Salazar with a single to left.

Lopper walked Everth Cabrera to load the bases ahead of Chase Headley. Headley’s slam deep to right made the score 10-0. The last run allowed by Looper came off a solo home run by Cameron Maybin.

The Cubs only runs came in the eighth. Reed Johnson singled to start the inning. Kosuke Fukudome reached on an error by Cabrera at short. Following a Bobby Scales fly out, Tyler Colvin singled to right to load the bases.

Max Ramirez launched an opposite field slam over the wall in right … the only highlight of the game for the Chicago Cubs.

Saturday was one of those games … and one that has been played over and over this spring.

Box Score from MLB.com

Randy Wells and the Cubs host the Giants at HoHoKam Park Sunday afternoon.

Quote of the Day

"Everyone needs to be valued. Everyone has the potential to give something back." - Diana Frances
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  • Ripsnorter1

    Just to put things into perspective:
    The Padres have a poor offensive team.

    In 2010, they were 28th of 30 teams in Batting average; 28th in slugging, 22nd in runs scored, and 23 in on base percentage.

    And don’t forget that the Padres have lost their best hitter in Agon since then, too.

    How does that encourage you concerning our pitching?

    • paulcatanese

      Rip,did you not read that it was the mound that gave gave Garza the problem not the Padre hitters. must have affected Looper the same way. On the other hand the Shark and all of the Padre pitchers liked the mound so you just must be confused about our wonderful staff. And Garza finished his work in the bullpen,guess that mound was okay,no one hit him there.

      • paulcatanese

        I guess I’m missing the big picture here and should be encouraged by the fact that Quade has declared himself as a “Players manager” and all is forgiven and tommorow is another day.Go get em guys!!Different mound,wind and old players against us,we got a real chance to look like a ballclub today. And don’t worry, we may have another retread on the way who will show us how to win and elmiinate errors,especially mental ones.And don’t worry bout him, he will make a lot less than I do,so he will listen to me.

    • diehardcubfan

      Nothing encourages me about this team as of now. I pray it is not a long summer.

  • diehardcubfan

    I suspect Luis Castillo will be a Cub on Monday or early next week. After all we need some more guys who can’t hit.

    I would have preferred Castillo a couple of years ago but not now.

  • cubtex

    A few facts about Matt Garza……

    1. Won 15 games in the AL East last year with a sub 4.00 ERA
    2. Came up big in big games!!!!
    3. Pitched over 200 Innings the last 2 years.

    Now for those concerned about spring training…..Remember he has been pitching in the Grapefruit League the last several years which is a totally different climent. Florida = Humidity Arizona= “A Dry Heat”

    Now…..Take a look at Garza’s Spring Training line from last year!!!!

    22.2 IP 2.78 ERA 4BB 21K’s

    Are you still worried???? Do you think that he is a bust based on his FIRST spring training pitching in ARIZONA?

    Hopefully this will open some of your minds and realize that spring training doesn’t mean a whole hell of a lot for a veteran like Garza. He will be a very solid pitcher for the Cubs!

    Here are some example of a couple of pitchers who had bad springs and didn’t do too badly during the year!

    Zach Greinke(Cy Young Year) 28 1/3 IP 9.21 ERA Reg Season 229 IP 2.16
    Cliff Lee (Cy Young Year) 8.31 ERA Reg Season 22-3 2.49 ERA

    I am not saying Garza will win the Cy Young but I am saying to relax and realize that he is not a rookie and he has a solid TRACK RECORD!

    Too many people get caught up with spring stats on a player without looking at his total body of work!

    • Tony_Hall

      If Facts are what you want, then lets look at his 2nd best season.

      Take your pick between
      11-9 – 3.70 ERA and 1.24 WHIP in a 184 innings
      8-12 – 3.95 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in a 203 innings

      Fact – even though playing on a team that won lots of games over the last 3 years, his 2nd best win total is…………….11 wins

      Fact – 2009 he won only 8 games! I know wins aren’t the best stat to judge a SP by, but 32 starts, a team that won 84 games, and he could only win 8 games! That’s hard to do.

      He is a very good pitcher, who is not elite. There is nothing wrong with that, and many teams would love to have this guy. I really don’t care what other teams, were reported to trade for him, as we did trade for him, and gave up to much, acting like he was an ACE, who was the difference maker to the 2011 season. There is nothing we can do about it now, not like we could have done anything about it before.

      ST is just that ST, the stats do not go on the back of the baseball card. But, cmon, you have to be concerned with what you are seeing with your own eyes….right?

      • cubtex

        Tony- I have played and seen enough baseball in my lifetime to not be concerned about spring training! Fact- He is 27 years old!!! Give it a rest and at least wait till the REAL season starts before you start judging players!!!

        • Tony_Hall

          So that means you are not concerned with what you can see with your own eyes. That is fine. If you are not concerned.

          Last year Carlos Silva, a proven SP in major league baseball, had an awful spring, then went out and pitched really good for a dozen or so starts.

          Do we give him the benefit of the doubt? He is a proven commodity, that he can pitch at the major league level.

          He is no stud like Garza, but has was 10-6 last year in 21 starts.. That is 10 wins, on a bad team, in only 21 starts.

          I think we must then, give him the benefit of the doubt, it is just ST, and put him in the rotation as well.

          Sometimes our eyes can fool us, sometimes our minds, and sometimes our hearts.

          Can we fast forward a week and half, please?

          • cubtex

            So now you are comparing Silva and Garza?? Again…..this is his first spring training pitching in the dry heat of Arizona and with a new club. Can you at least wait to judge a player after you see him pitch during the regular season?

          • Tony_Hall

            What part of “He is no stud like Garza” did you not understand?

            You always seem to make things up, that people say. I never compared Silva to Garza. I said if, ST stats don’t matter for Vets that have done this before, then Silva should make the rotation out of ST, since he has proven he can pitch at the ML level. You can’t worry about his ST, since last year, head a very good start to the year, until he got injured. Silva was 8-2 through 14 starts last year, remember it took Garza 32 starts to get 8 wins, on a good team in 2009. So shouldn’t Silva be given the benefit of the doubt as well, or does the benefit of the doubt only go to pitchers you like.

            Now you say, that Garza is having trouble pitching in the dry heat of Arizona. He doesn’t need any help with his excuses. He seems to have enough of his own.

            I have followed Garza for the last 2 years, and know his ups and downs. He will have a very good stretch, but will also have a bad stretch. He is not a lock down SP, that only has a couple bad outings a year. If he doens’t have good stats in May, this will be an awful deal, as the Cubs early season schedule is extremely easy. I am more worried about Garza in June – Sept – take a look at his June 2010 ERA of 6.83. He also got 4 of his 15 wins during that month, when he was pitching awful, to get him over career high of wins of 11 on a season. Just think if he pitches like that for the Cubs, he won’t win any games.

          • cubtex

            Tony….Don’t most starting pitchers have a bad stretch during a year? Look, we can agree to disagree but I for one think the Cubs have the best top 3 pitchers in the rotation that they have had since I can remember.
            The fact that Garza is going from the AL East to the NL will be an easier adjustment since he is only facing 8 hitters and a pitcher don’t you agree?
            I am sure all 32 teams would take Garza on their staff!
            So based on last years spring training stats where he had a 2.78 ERA with 21K’s and 4 BB’s he won 15 games during the season with TB.

            Based on this years spring training stats….what are your projections for Garza since ST is such a good criteria on how the regular season bodes!

          • Tony_Hall

            First – most #2 and # 3 and of course the 4’s and 5’s do. ACES generally don’t. They will have 1 bad start, but very rarely do they follow it up with another bad start. It can happen, but when you watch Garza week after week, he is not a pitcher you say, he’s a stopper of a starter. If you think Garza is anymore than a #2 or #3, then we can agree to disagree.

            The old AL East to the NL.. Of course it should lower his number, except, lets consider the park difference. He is moving to much more hitter friendly park. A fly pitcher, can have some really bad days in the summer.

            Would all 32 teams take Garza for no cost except his payroll…most likely. But only one team was willing to overpay in prospects and pay him, and that was JH. All trades like this, the team getting the vet, overpays.

            I also could care less about his ST stats, this is the part you keep not getting, I am using my eyes!

            As far as what do I think Garza’s stats to be, I would expect a slightly lower WHIP, slightly lower ERA, but that is more based on the fact that the Cubs defense will allow him to give up more unearned runs,. But I also expect him to start the year well, the Cubs are playing a weak schedule, early, but I expect him to start to struggle when, the temps rise, He will give up more HR’s.

            What would I like to see happen, I would love to see him come in and dominate and take over the #1 spot in the rotation, sub 3 ERA, win 15+ games and be a CY Young Candidate. But then again, I like to get what I pay for, and that is what we paid for, with our prospects.

            And in case your memory is short, Wood, Prior, Zambrano, and add in Clement if you want was the best I remember.

          • cubtex

            Isn’t Ted Lilly a fly ball pitcher who did OK at Wrigley. Look… How many true #1’s are there in the majors??? I don’t consider Dempster to be a #1 or Zambrano either for that matter. So Garza is a #2 or at worst a #3. I’ll take that for giving up some prospects to get a 27 year old #2 or #3 who is locked up for 3 years. Prospects are called prospects for a reason! Look at the Cubs drafts for the last decade and you can see all these high draft choices and Baseball America top 10 prospects and how many of these actually became top players. You can count them on one hand.
            Again. I will take a proven starter everytime over a prospect and I might get burned once or twice but just like in Vegas……I will win much more than I will lose!!!

          • Tony_Hall

            We will have to agree to disagree on which direction works. Your way is the way the Cubs have been doing it…I’m just saying!

            Lilly did do ok, but I would rather have not rolled those dice again.

            I count 22.

            As far as drafts go, I only care about Tim Wilken’s drafts, and he keeps drafting athletic ballplayers. The farm system has been and will continue to bring up players to the 25 man roster, unless JH keeps trading them away first.

            This is not the year, Garza didn’t put us over.

            I agree to disagree!

    • paulcatanese

      Now it’s the difference in the weather that should excuse Garza. Yesterday it was the mound that caused his bad outing and stetched hamstring,yet he could throw in the bullpen afterwards. What does this guy need to perform?I know its ST and there should be some leeway, but it’s his style I object to. ST or not he is a high ball pitcher, I think it will kill him at Wrigley. Even with and ERA of 3.00 coupled with the poor offense at his back he has no chance, and I doubt he will reach that mark in ERA. He is here and I hope he does well but my opinion was and still is thats a trade that should not have happened.

      • cubtex

        Paul- Didn’t you mention that yesterday was the first time that you saw Garza pitch???

        What would your opinion have been of him is if the first time you saw him pitch was the no hitter he threw last year??

        He pitched in the AL East with tremendous hitters parks! Fenway and Toronto to name a few!

        Garza should be the least of the Cubs concerns!!!

        • Tony_Hall

          Have you looked at his stats against those AL East teams. Not pretty!

          Yes he should be the least of our concerns, that is what is so concerning.

        • paulcatanese

          Yes,yesterday was the first time I have seen him pitch. It didn’t take a brain surgeon to see he is a high,fly ball pitcher. Granted when he kept the ball down the pitches were effective,especaily the slider or curve.The control of those pitches will deterimine his success at Wrigley. Unfortunatly I watch no other teams to a degree only the Cubs. Also the run support he gets will play a big role, and presently he can only dream about that. Their is no doubt he has a tough road ahead. Let me add this, I feel the same concern for the whole staff,not just Garza, offense,offense,offense.

        • paulcatanese

          Since you asked about first impressions I will say that the ones that the ones that impressed me the most were Sandy Koufax,and Kerry Wood(rookie years both). Koufax to the point if I knew he was scheduled to pitch against the Cubs I would just stay home as the results were very predictable.

  • Aaron

    Just wanted to point out that I was right yet again…..(thumps chest)….LOL…j/k…but seriously, check out what I posted earlier:
    ********************************************************************************************
    On the negative side:
    1) Garza continues to suck, and is NOT worth the talent the Cubs gave up, no matter how you look at it. He’d have to be an Ace to warrant that, and he just is clearly nowhere near that caliber….even though it’s Spring Training…he wasn’t that to begin with in Tampa….I can’t wait for his interview after this game. I wonder what his excuse is now. Oh….Len just said it for him…It’s a “tight” hamstring…LOL….surrrrrrrrrrrrrrre
    ********************************************************************************************

    Looks like Garza blamed another outing, on……….drum roll please…………………………………………………………………………………………….A bad mound….yup, true story….check it out:
    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/cubs/ct-spt-0320-bits-cubs-spring-training20110319,0,4103246.story

    His excuse was the “slippery slope” one, the slant of the Peoria Complex mound making it impossible for him to find a good landing spot and thus causing his left hamstring to tighten up.
    ……………..
    “Nothing was wrong physically, mechanically I was fine,” he said. “It was just the landing (spot). I had to alter it so many times it was hard to get back to normal.

    WOW

    • cubtex

      Aaron….Your ignorance continues to amaze me!!! I believe you said that you used to pitch at one time in your life????? Correct????
      Did you ever notice a difference in a pitcher’s mound at different facilities. I for one have heard that common complaint amongst teammates quite often.

      Do you realize that Garza has pitched in Florida the last several years for ST instead of Arizona???

      So…..did you see Garza’s ST stats from last year??? Based on your assesment of player….you would be calling Garza a stud and ace.

      Get a clue and go on a south side forum!

      • Tony_Hall

        Our proven major league pitcher, can’t adjust to a mound? Give me a break. I know it is only ST, but they do have a grounds crew, and that excuse just doesn’t fly during the regular season.

        I guess it is only ST, but it seems like he is working on his excuses more than his game.

        • cubtex

          It’s a spring training complex Tony!!!!! This is not a major league park.
          Get back to me in May!

          • Tony_Hall

            So they don’t have a grounds crew to fix a mound that is not right?

            These are professional sports teams, I don’t think the mound could be in that bad of shape.

        • Aaron

          Just stop responding to him….he’ll go away. He calls us ignorant, yet puts words in our mouth (and others he disagrees with on here). NOTHING he says makes any sense. Even within posts, he contradicts himself, like the whole Garza thing with his spring ERA last year vs this year, etc.

          • cubtex

            You are a genius in your own mind!!! Clueless!!!!! And thank god you do not make baseball decisions for a living! ha ha ha

          • Tony_Hall

            I’m not sure how long you have been reading, but Aaron is right way more than he is wrong. I know we are just armchair GM’s (I believe that is all you are as well), but many of these decisions, are very easy to make, and also very easy to see what JH will do, based on his past experiences. Aaron outlined that in the last 6 months, and it makes so much sense, as to why JH navigates to certain players.

          • cubtex

            I will be here to call you on your bullsh… everytime. You might fool the casual fan with these ridiculous stats comparing players in ST and minor leagues…but you won’t pull that crap past me!!! Have a great day!!!!

          • paulcatanese

            It must be great to have all the insight that you seem to project. I would say that to respond in a civil manner is acceptable to anyone but I think you were a little harsh in the comments of your’e replys. Aaron and Tony are pretty well respected by most on this site and have posted informative subjects that we all have enjoyed. I enjoy youre’s as well, just try not to get personal,you are to informed to do that.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

      I am not going to defend Garza for a soso spring. There is some truth behind his latest excuse though. Every place is different as far as pitching aspects is concerned. This does not bode well for the cubs though because it is true in the Majors as well not just ST.
      If Garza can not make the adjustments that are needed to go and be successful in different situations it could very well be a long year. But I for one am going to wait till he pitches when the games count before throwing him under the bus.

    • Jay from Sandwich

      Aaron, Yes we over paid for Graza, which happens more times then not in Baseball. But look at it this way, Lee may never hit Major league pitching, Archer had one good season in minor when found some control (sounds like a lefting we had a few years back by the name of Hill), Henc e the best Player they got was an Outfielder which we all liked but did not figure in the Cubs Future because of Jackson/Colvin/Ty W./Golden etc….
      Hence the Cubs could aford to let three nice prospect go for a #3/#2 pitcher was a future. I would have oerfer that one of this three would still be was the Cubs but Kim Hendry has a track record of picking managers who use rookie as there scape goats for whats wrong with the Cubs. Hence we either bring young players up to early and or dod not let them play ever day for 3/4 of a year before we send them down and ruion there Confindence alol Paterson/Pie etc. etc.
      That why we needed Sandberg as manager. He had a bad frist 1/2 of his rookie year playing every day a hitting less than 200. But with tome figure it out and had a good secoubd half of year and the rest is History.
      Until we get a Manager that knows how do handle young players we will continue to ruin good young talent.
      We already know that Q has made an exsample and a scape gost out of our young SS last year so he is not the answer……..

      Players manager with no Major league playing time with a bunch of veterns like ours equails a long, long, very Long Season.

      So lets bring a malconten from new york to play Secound Base and end the season over quickly. Then maybe the oweners will clean house……
      Go Cubs Go

    • John_CC

      “I was right yet again…..(thumps chest)….LOL…j/k…but seriously, ”

      So what is it? Since you ended with – but seriously – I’d say you are not just kidding but yet again praising yourself.

  • Patrick_Schaefer

    Time to cut Perez, Silva, Looper(or send him to the pen, to face only righty batters cause he can’t get Lefty bats out), send DeWitt down he has an option left, he can’t field or hit, Cut Koyie Hill, and Cut Ojeda.

    Keep Castillo over Hill,
    Rotation
    Demp
    Z
    Garza
    Wells
    Cash
    Pen
    Marmol
    Marshall
    Wood
    Maine
    Grabow
    Looper (long man) or righty specialist
    Stevens? Shark? Mateo? No one is overwhelming
    Bottom 3 not to encouraging!!!
    OF
    LF Soriano/Colvin/(Jackson later in the season)
    CF Byrd/Johnson/Camp/Jackson
    RF Colvin/Fukudome/Jackson
    1b Pena/Colvin
    2b Barney?Baker? Moore?Camp?
    SS Castro/Barney/Camp?
    3b Ramirez/ Moore/Baker/Barney/Camp?
    C Soto/Castillo/Ramirez

  • Tony_Hall

    I would love to see the Cubs make some, well, un-Cub like moves.

    Cut a player, even though they have a contract they must pay.

    Cut a player, even though he is a nice guy, and is liked in the clubhouse.

    Take a chance on a player, even though is nothing more than a role player.

    Pick the young guy, who has upside for this team, versus a vet on the downside of his career.

    And last but not least – Pick the best 25 players!

    • Tom U

      If I could type a standing ovation, I would give you a ten minute one.

      • Aaron

        Ditto

    • paul catanese

      I know Tony,but we all can dream about the above post, unfortunatly it can only be a dream and wer’e stuck with what we have.

      • Dorasaga

        Dreams are beautiful because they are hardly reachable.

        • paulcatanese

          Not always not reachable, been married to mine for 54 years now,and she is a Cub fan.

  • Patrick_Schaefer

    RT @CarrieMuskat Randy Wells is starting Sunday. Also scheduled to pitch for #Cubs: Justin Berg, John Grabow, Sean Marshall & Carlos Marmol 5 minutes ago
    RT @CarrieMuskat #Cubs Casey Coleman gave up 2 H over 3 IPs vs #Giants Triple-A team Sat in Minor League game. No BB, no Rs, & 3 Ks 28 minutes ago
    RT @CubsInsider #Cubs lineup vs. #SFGiants (3/20): Camp RF, Castro SS, Byrd CF, Ramirez 3B, Moore 1B, Soriano LF, Scales 2B, Hill C, Wells P about 2 hours ago

    Time to cut dead weight Justin Berg, why is he still here is it because of his 22.50 ERA? Scales is going to AAA we know that so why is he still here and starting at 2b and taking playing time away from Barney who could use more playing time at 2b? Hill has done nothing yet still here over Clevenger?
    DeWitt has been a big disappointment on offense and defense has an option left yet is still here taking AB and playing time away from others.

    Coleman with an impressive outing was sent down early and not really given any chance to make the team. Don’t get me wrong I like Wells and Cash in the rotation but would still like to see Coleman face more ML hitters to see what he can do.

    • paulcatanese

      Patrick,’The Natural’ starts in HD five minutes from now onTMC

  • paulcatanese

    Cubs win,Cubs win. Guess the Giant pitchers couldn’t figure out the mound.