Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Brewers – 03/02/11

Spring Training Game Four: Cubs (1-2) vs. Brewers (2-1)
Game Time – 2:05pm CST
Coverage – TV: None – Radio: webcast
Location – Maryvale Baseball Park, Maryvale

Carlos Silva (0-0, -.–/-.–) vs. Yovani Gallardo (0-0, -.–/-.–)

The Cubs play the Brewers for the second, and last time of the spring this afternoon. A Brewers split-squad beat the Cubs 5-3 Monday afternoon at HoHoKam. Milwaukee was without Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks and Casey McGehee two days ago … all three figures to join Ryan Braun in the starting lineup this afternoon.

For the second time in as many days, Q’s offense will have it’s hands full with one of the best young pitchers in the National League. Yovani Gallardo has handled the Cubs in the past and there is no reason to feel the trend will stop in Gallardo’s first outing of the spring.

Mike Quade is expected to run out a majority of his regulars again this afternoon behind Carlos Silva.

The Cubs pathetic defense has been credited with nine errors in the first three games of the spring. Q’s defense is not making the routine plays in the field, much less the spectacular ones. The Cubs must improve their defense before the games actually count.

Of the 30 pitchers in big league camp, only a handful has not pitched in a game … Alberto Cabrera, Rafael Dolis, Kyle Smit, Trey McNutt and Robert Coello. James Russell is expected to follow Carlos Silva this afternoon and Braden Looper is on the schedule for Thursday. Angel Guzman is slated to throw batting practice today after a successful side session Sunday.

Cubs Starting Lineup vs. Brewers

Kosuke Fukudome – RF
Starlin Castro – SS
Marlon Byrd – CF
Aramis Ramirez – 3B
Carlos Pena – 1B
Alfonso Soriano – LF
Blake DeWitt – 2B
Koyie Hill – C
Carlos Silva – P

Today’s game can be heard on via a webcast from Maryvale. Len Kasper and Mick Gillispie, the Smokies’ play-by-play announcer, will make the call.

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Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"People who write about Spring Training not being necessary have never tried to throw a baseball." – Sandy Koufax
  • Neil

    It was very interesting to watch the Brewers work on their infield defense. Weeks was busting his backside and Robin Yount was playing first base … and of course giving pointers.

  • xaxinho

    … and we started early today. Error by Aramis

  • Neil

    This defense is horrible. 3 more errors, all in the first inning.

  • gocubs

    Someone please tell me why Byrd is our #3 hitter?

  • MikeT_2008

    Ok I know we’re not even a week in Spring games but the errors are rediculous, 3 per game, I guess if someone had to see a silver lining is that it is the first week of Spring and not late March, but still this should not be happening at this rate

  • Neil

    There was a fight in the dugout. Silva has left the park.

  • Cloycub13

    So, 12 errors in 4 games and counting….
    A blow up in the dugout…
    Crappy clutch hitting….
    Add it all together and we have same stuff different day…and that is the G-rated version.
    I am going to say it again, and I agree with most here… Quade has talked the talk, and all of the vets supported him… Fine. But it is now time to walk the walk and I just ain’t seeing it. I am not going to overreact as it is 4 days into spring camp, but a manager that stressed the fundamentals and defense and pitching sure as hell is not getting results.

    The last time I will say this… The Cubs will rue the day that Neil had to post “From the wire Quade hired as manager of the Cubs”.

    My faith was weak to start, it gained some steam as camp opened just by pure excitement of Winter closing and baseball back on the air… but early returns on this is garbage. They had better get their act together by 4/1. Fans will show Ricketts et al what they are made of if this is the product we have to look at all season long.

    • Cloycub13

      Make that 13 Errors and counting

    • studio179

      I am not going to overreact so early on in spring training, either. But I agree. Quade needs to step up early or he will get stepped on.

      The Cubs can not play sloppy ball and expect to come from behind or win fans over who already know it could be a long, long year.

    • JedMosley

      Is Quade the one out there dropping the fly balls? No, give him a little break. These players need to suck it up and just start making plays. I wouldn’t put this on Quade though, it sounds like he’s doing all he can, but the players need to respond.

  • studio179

    Early or not, these errors look horrible.

    Silva fighting looks horrible. Don’t just leave the park today, just leave.

    It looks like will get a good look and see what kind of manager Quade is and how he handles the above situations.

  • Kojak Osborne Jr.

    This is ugly, Silva need to be released his behavior is unacceptable.

  • cubtex

    I suspect Silva will be released very shortly! He is done!

  • gary3411

    At least it’s mostly irrelevent pitchers getting creamed so far, other than Garza. (Russell, Silva, Berg)

  • Agustin_Rexach

    What happened? Who was fighting?

    • Kojak Osborne Jr.

      From what I heard it was Silva and Ramirez

      • Neil

        It was Silva and Ramirez. Before the confirmation that it was Ramirez, the talk at the park was it was either Ramirez, Soto or Hill.

        The defense is worse than the 14 errors. Quade and the team is concerned but they don’t want the players to feel they are pushing the panic button.

        • Kojak Osborne Jr.

          Thanks Neil for the update.

  • jw

    Hey, this is just the way the Indians started in “Major League” with Charlie Sheen as “Wild Thing” …Who has the voodoo doll “Jo-Bu” in a locker?

    Seriously, Silva needs to worry about not throwing goppher balls and let Quade worry about errors. I worry about Castro who appears to be losing confidence. This started in the winter league…Maybe they should call in Chuck Knoblauch for some suggestions. I hope he can pull out of this.

  • BillyFinT

    Good job as always, Neil, esp. on picking up little details like a Hall of Famer guiding the next generation of second baseman.

    This kind of scene reminds me of this brilliant commercial from MLB Network, and Robin Yount was easily the first I could identify:

    The 12 errors…

    Fear not, fella! The DBacks tonight still has a chance to pass our dear Cubbie, and keep that title of Most Defensive Miscues at their Cactus home!

  • cc002600

    Nice Start

  • The Maven

    The cracks are already beginning to show

    • paulcatanese

      Yes and Hi HO Silva leads the charge. And by the way,will there be any “fingers” left on the infielders when the season starts.(per Quade,finger for every error)?

  • Tom U

    Neil, do you know whether Blake DeWitt has any minor league options left?

  • Aaron

    I’m just laughing my ass off now, because I called this calamity that is about to ensue come Opening Day….

    That being said, guys that helped their cause today (meaning bubble players):
    Jay Jackson
    Rice (long-shot)

    Guys that hurt themselves:
    Camp (long-shot)
    Scales (long-shot)
    Baker *signed though
    Hill *virtually ensured a spot though b/c of Hendry’s boner for him
    M Smith (long-shot)
    Silva *contract makes him a lock, even with outburst in dugout
    Russell *second bad outing, which virtually ensures he starts in Iowa, even if it is early still

    The problem with all of this, is there really aren’t any hitters that are standing out other than Castro, Soriano, and Byrd. That doesn’t really bode well for us.

    Last year, we had Colvin and Castro come out in Spring Training guns a blazin’, and Colvin earned a spot. This year, it does not appear we will have any surprises on who comes up north for the start of the season….especially on offense. Pitching-wise, I wouldn’t be shocked to see Jay Jackson earn a pen spot.

    But Smith, Castillo, Snyder, LaHair, Vitters, Jackson, and Max Ramirez aren’t really coming out on fire, and that’s PRECISELY what they had to do to even remotely earn consideration for this roster.

    At this point, I’d say Ojeda, Johnson, and Koyie Hill are virtual locks to make the team, and that does NOT bode well for the organization as it stunts growth, which we so desperately need. A few baseball pundits are saying we have the most MLB talent of any organization right now. Okay….then why don’t we give them a shot?!?

    Also…with Pena on board, wasn’t our defense supposed to magically improve…LOL

    • Kojak Osborne Jr.

      Once again Hendry is looking bad when will the Cubs finally get rid of him.

  • Aaron


    I would like your opinion on this post I found elsewhere. Normally, I don’t care what others say elsewhere, but this was very very interesting

    I’m wondering when it’s going to dawn on Starlin Castro that Q-Ball is using him as a scapegoat for the general rotten defense of the Cubs. Frankly it’s getting tiresome reading about Quade chewing Starlin out in public.

    This is why I was NOT a fan of Quade getting the gig in the first place. I know Sandberg wouldn’t have come out in public like that with some young player. Quade has now done it twice. Once last year with Castro down the stretch when veterans were making even more egregious mistakes, and now already this spring while veterans are making even worse mistakes.

    Who is more to blame? A 21 year old kid who has 120-ish games under his belt, or a veteran that makes worse mistakes, and has 500-1,000+games under their belt?

    I can’t stand this organization and their double standards. It’s like politics and the media.

    • Neil

      Aaron, I would like to hear about Quade chewing out the vets as well. I do not know about the comment from above or where you got it from.

      I will say this, Castro is not focused but he is not the only one from what I’ve seen. This entire roster appears lost and unfocused. When Alfonso Soriano is one of the lone highlights after four games, there is a problem.

      After what I’ve seen for the past four days, it is time for Quade to let the entire team have it and make sure the door is cracked so the media can hear it.

      • Aaron

        Neil, the comment wasn’t from a source or anyone special, just a poster on TCR.

        The sole reason I posted it, is because I was thinking the exact same thing. I’m wondering why this joker (Quade) is going out in public talking about Castro’s defense, when others have been just as bad, if not worse…they just happen to be veterans, or slightly older (in DeWitt’s case)

        I just don’t get it. My point is that, I highly doubt Sandberg would stand for any of this, and he certainly wouldn’t single out a young guy like Castro. You play the game hard, and you play it the right way. As veterans, you expect more. Younger guys need to learn the game, but they also deserve a bit of leeway.

    • paulcatanese

      Aaron,good article. Obviously there’s no back talk when you chew out a young soph player. I have also said if you chew someone out,take him off to the side,tis has been totaly double standards by Quade. Instead he could have told Castro about the home run to left center showing some pull power. That called for positive input. I dont believe Quade will ever chew a vet out in public,they would probably buy his contract out and ship him off.

  • cubs1967

    last time I checked; the players asked PK McCaskey for Quade to come back…………………so Ricketts asked for this.
    why give the reigning AAA mgr who happens to be a HOF player and your most popular player ever besides Banks a chance………..right Tommy boy.

    has anyone heard how many tix got sold last Friday. they used to always make a big deal about it…………was it the worst in the past decade like I predicted so NOW there is no details????

  • cubs1967

    1 more thing now that i’m sufficiently pissed off;
    when does quade get turned out; who is quade??? a journeyman minor league mgr who in 20 yrs fans will remember fondly w/ jim essian?? or lee elia>>
    but who is ryno–1st more popular than any player in the clubhouse including woody, 2nd a HOF that not one player in the clubhouse will ever be>??..

    so………..quade is lou jr yelling at the kids and letting the vets do nothing, be responsible for nothing, and make more errors than a blind team.

    SOS…………103 yrs and counting………..NO grace period…….NO championships!

  • Tom U

    With the current discussion on defense, I looked up the top fielding percentage teams in the AL and NL over the past five years
    Among the leaders in the AL include the Yankees, the Red Sox, the Rays, the Angels, and the Twins. In the NL, it was the Reds, the Cardinals, the Padres, the Phillies, and Braves.

    Does this pattern look familiar?

    Teams that develop and promote their own talent tend to do better defensively. There is consistency in how the organization approach defense and expects their players to play. The Cardinals have used this as a basis for their organization for decades. When you have players contantly coming from different organiztions, each may have a different perspective in how to field their position. This can lead to some of the errors.

    As an extra kick in the head to Cubs fans, the White Sox have also been one of the best fielding teams in the AL over the past five years.