Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Royals – 03/04/11

Spring Training Game Six: Cubs (1-4) vs. Royals (4-1)
Game Time – 2:05pm CST
Coverage – TV: None – Radio: webcast
Location – Surprise Stadium, Surprise

Matt Garza (0-1, 22.50/3.00) vs. Bruce Chen (0-0, 0.00/1.00)

After a better effort Thursday at HoHoKam Park, the Cubs travel to Surprise this afternoon to face the Kansas City Royals. Today is the first of two trips to Surprise, the Cubs return on March 26 to face the Rangers … the Rangers and Royals share the Surprise Stadium complex.

Matt Garza will make his first start, second appearance, of the spring this afternoon. Garza was hit pretty hard in his first outing last Sunday (five runs on five hits, a walk, a strikeout and a grand slam by Coco Crisp in two innings). Garza just missed his spots and threw only fastballs and changeups.

Mike Quade reportedly will not use a designated hitter this afternoon. Quade would rather get Garza a couple of at bats.

A majority of the Cubs veteran players are expected to receive a day off after playing three days in a row … Aramis Ramirez, Blake DeWitt and Marlon Byrd are among the players not expected to make the trip.

Tyler Colvin is expected to make his professional debut at first base this afternoon. Colvin has seen time in left and right this spring. The Cubs would like for Colvin to be one of the backups to Carlos Pena when the season begins. Jeff Baker is slated to be Pena’s other backup and he played a couple of innings at first base Wednesday (in Maryvale against the Brewers).

Brett Jackson is also expected to be in the starting lineup. Jackson will patrol centerfield.

Bruce Chen will make his second start of the spring. The Royals have generated a ton of excitement over all of the young talent in their system. The Royals could have a rough year but many feel they are on the verge of becoming the next Tampa Bay Rays.

Bruce Chen did not allow a run in his first outing of the spring. Chen gave up a hit, a walk and struck out one in his two innings of work.

Ned Yost is expected to send Danny Duffy and Blaine Hardy to the mound after Chen. Billy Butler, who has had a huge spring, is expected to return to the starting lineup after getting a day off Thursday.

Today’s game can be heard on via a webcast from Surprise. Len Kasper and Mick Gillispie, the Smokies’ play-by-play announcer, will make the call. The Cubs return to WGN Radio Saturday with the first telecast of the spring Sunday from HoHoKam.

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Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"You can’t sit on a lead and kill the clock. You’ve got to give the other man his chance. That’s why baseball is the greatest game." - Earl Weaver
  • Neil

    Today’s starting lineup:

    Fukudome – RF
    Castro – SS
    Colvin – 1B
    Soto – C
    Scott Moore – 3B
    Baker – 2B
    Johnson – LF
    Jackson – CF
    Garza – P

    • Aaron

      Somehow, I get a good vibe from this lineup, and I think we’ll see some decent run production today. I could be wrong, but the lefty-righty mix is good, and prevents a lot of pitchers from getting comfortable and in a groove, especially if they rely on cutters, etc.

      In particular, I think Castro, Colvin, Soto, Moore, and Jackson will have good days.

  • Neil

    Samardzija, Wood, Alberto Cabrera, John Gaub and Marshall are expected to pitch today

    • Ripsnorter1

      And I don’t expect Samardzija or Gaub to have good days–even against the KC Royals AAA team.

    • Tom U

      Still no McNutt?

      • Aaron

        ….starting to wonder if he’s having arm issues.

        • GrantJones7

          I know someone very close to Trey il ask if hes having any problems

      • Neil

        McNutt was supposed to pitch yesterday. I saw him in the bullpen Tuesday, which typically means in ST they are pitching.

    • Aaron

      I’m REALLY interested to hear how Cabrera does today. All I have are his stats and they’re not that impressive, but he’s still just 22 yrs old, and supposedly he has a live arm

  • BosephHeyden

    I’m interested to see how the Royals do with Ned Yost. The Brewers weren’t that bad with him, in fact, they were pretty competitive: it’s just that, like so many other sports teams, when you get a diva superstar that doesn’t listen but comes up with great personal stats, it’s always the manager’s fault when they don’t perform.

  • Garrett

    Why has Trey Mcnutt pitched in a game yet? Top prospect and he is on the bench can someone explain that to me please?

  • Garrett

    Why has Trey Mcnutt not pitched in a game yet? Top prospect and he is on the bench can someone explain that to me please?

    • Neil

      Do not know right now … sorry. I will not speculate.

  • Neil

    Colvin with a hr to RF in the first off of the lefty Chen

    • GaryLeeT

      I am still scratching my head over the signing of a left handed Pena. This year’s going nowhere team would have been the perfect opportunity to play Colvin full time at first. They already had Baker as a back up. Now Hendry will make sure Quade puts his $10 mil square peg into that round hole, and Colvin’s development be damned.

  • roguesqr09

    Runner on third, 1 out, and we can’t score him. Same ole cubs.

  • Neil

    Garza drilled by liner to rib/kidney area. Drops to knees in delayed reax. Stays in game.

  • Neil

    Garza was lifted for a pinch-hitter, was supposed to go three today.

  • GrantJones7

    I asked a friend thats very close to Trey and they said

    “He isn’t hurt. They just keep pushing his pitching time back.”

    • Neil

      Grant, thanks for the info and checking … very cool.

      • GrantJones7

        No problem, i trust this person completly, but i dont see why they dont wanna see him pitch in game

  • Neil

    From the Sun-Times:

    Garza deemed fine by Cubs. Bruised ribs/lower back. Out for precautionary reasons

    • BillyFinT

      Well, like GM Hendry knows the old saying here, “we need all the pitchers we can get!” We might see a start or two of McNutt as a fill-in, right?

  • Neil

    Colvin with another 2-strike hit, 3-for-3 with 3 RBI, 2B and a home run.

    • Aaron

      Well, so far Soto and Jackson are making me look bad on my picks to click, but Castro, Colvin, and Moore have done just fine

  • Neil

    Wood with a 1-2-3 5th, hit 96 on the gun

    • Ripsnorter1

      That’s smokin’!

  • Patrick_Schaefer
    Baseball prospectus Profile of Brett Jackson, Good stuff.

  • John_CC

    Are in AZ, Neil?

    I’m heading down tomorrow. Probably go to Fitch on Sunday to celebrate my b-day with the rookies…I can’t say that I want to pay to watch the “real” team.

    • Neil

      John, I left yesterday. Have a great time and Happy Birthday!

  • Neil

    John Gaub was horrible in the sixth. Walked the bases loaded, at one point threw 9 straight balls, then gave up a slam to Eric Hosmer.

    • Ripsnorter1

      I told you he’d have an awful day. He’s not AAA caliber, let alone MLB caliber. Shouldn’t even be on the roster.

  • Patrick_Schaefer

    WUHHHH HOOOOO! No Errors today!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOL

    • gary3411

      Tru dat