Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 07/18/11

Consistency has suffered on all levels, as continued roster moves have played havoc. One time offensive juggernaut Tennessee is now struggling. Peoria is searching for answers offensively, while Boise seemed to run into a buzz saw in Vancouver. However, the name of the game is speed, speed, speed in Daytona and Iowa, as the improvement has made their pitchers happy, and opposing batteries nervous.

All of that, and more, in this edition of CCO’s the Down on the Farm Report.

Short Season-A – Boise Hawks (15-14)
Vancouver stymied the Hawks on Wednesday, managing only three hits in a 4-2 loss. No player collected more than one hit, and Reggie Golden and Wes Darvill drove in both runs. Starter Ben Wells was stretched out a bit, going five innings and allowing two earned runs while striking out four batters. Juan Rosario finished out the game, letting in two earned runs in three innings of work.

The Hawks outhit Vancouver 8-6 on Thursday, but just couldn’t string enough of them together, as they lost to the Canadians 5-1. Paul Hoilman was 3-for-4, while Wilson Contreras was 2-for-3 with an RBI. Starter Yao-Lin Wang impressed with nine strikeouts, but allowed three earned runs in 4.2 innings. Cameron Greathouse finished up, letting in two runs (one earned).

In a rare Friday matinee, Boise outlasted Vancouver 7-6 in eleven innings. The Hawks were leading 3-1 after five innings based on strong pitching by Su-Min Jung. Jung allowed an earned run and struck out two batters to lower his ERA to 1.80. Jin-Yeong Kim followed and gave up five earned runs in 1.2 innings to tie the score at 6-6. Colin Richardson and Bryce Shafer then blanked the Canadians the rest of the way.

Brad Zapenas and Wes Darvill were both 2-for-5 with a double and stolen base. Rafael Lopez drove in two, while Paul Hoilman blasted his sixth home run, a two-run shot.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

In a rain-shortened game, Boise lost to Vancouver on Saturday 6-2 in five innings. To take advantage of their team speed, the Hawks moved Pin-Chieh Chen to the third spot in the batting order, with Kyung-Min Na taking over at leadoff. Chen delivered by going 1-for-2 with an RBI and run scored. Rafael Lopez drove in Blair Springfield for Boise’s other run. Austin Reed did well for the first four innings, then fell apart in the fifth, allowing three earned runs. Reed ended up going 4.2 innings yielding six runs (five earned) while striking out three batters. Kyler Burke faced one batter before the game was stopped.

Low Class-A – Peoria Chiefs (42-50)
Well, they can’t all be no-hitters for Austin Kirk, as he and the Chiefs were smoked for fifteen hits in Peoria’s 10-2 loss to Lake County on Thursday. Kirk allowed six earned runs in four innings, while Robinson Lopez gave up three earned runs in 1.1 innings. Dan Berlind was somewhat better, letting in one earned run in 2.2 innings. P.J. Francescon was the only pitcher to walk away untouched, striking out three in his inning of work. Rubi Silva continues to thrive in the leadoff spot, going 3-for-5 with a triple. Arismendy Alcantara was 3-for -4.

Peoria righted the ship against the Lake County Captains on Friday, winning 6-5 in ten innings. It was a seesaw affair, with the lead changing hands five times. Elliot Soto (2-for-5, RBI, stolen base) singled home Ryan Cuneo (1-for-5) for the game-winner. Sergio Burrell was 2-for-4 with a double, while Richard Jones was also 2-for-4 with a double, two RBI, and his 17th homer.

Starling Peralta had another strong effort, allowing four runs (three earned) while striking out three in five innings. Pete Levitt pitched two scoreless innings. Yohan Gonzalez let in the tying runs, and then shut the door, tossing three innings for the victory.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

Outfielder Taiwan Easterling made a splash in his Peoria debut, but it wasn’t enough as the Chiefs fell to the Fort Wayne TinCaps on Saturday, 4-3 in thirteen innings. Easterling was 2-for-5 with his first professional home run, along with two RBI. Richard Jones and Anthony Giansanti were 2-for-6 each, while Micah Gibbs was 2-for-5 with two doubles and an RBI. Eric Jokisch had a good effort spoiled, as he went five innings allowing two earned runs while striking out five batters. Alvaro Sosa let in the game-tying run in his 2.1 innings, while Brent Ebinger pitched 3.2 innings of scoreless relief. P.J. Francescon gave up the winning run after tossing two innings

High Class-A – Daytona Cubs (58-34)
Daytona got back into the win column, as they rapped out 18 hits in a 5-2 victory in 10 innings over Fort Myers on Thursday. Evan Crawford rose to second in the Florida State League in batting with a 4-for-5 evening. Justin Bour was 3-for-6 with a double, while Matt Cerda was 3-for-5 with a double and two RBI. Logan Watkins, Michael Burgess, Michael Brenly, and Dustin Harrington each had multi-hit nights.

Jeffrey Lorick gave the D-Cubs a solid effort, giving up only an unearned run and striking out four in 5.2 innings. Eduardo Figueroa held the Miracle scoreless for 2.1 innings. Frank Batista picked up a blown save as he suffered an unearned run, while Jordan Latham blanked Fort Myers the rest of the way.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

On Friday, Daytona’s comeback bid fell short, as they lost to Fort Myers 5-4. Matt Szczur collected two hits, while Rafael Valdes was 2-for-3 with two RBI. The D-Cubs couldn’t overcome the deficit provided by Brett Wallach, as he allowed five earned runs in 5.2 innings while striking out four batters. Larry Suarez and Juan Serrano held the Miracle scoreless the rest of the game.

Using the organizational philosophy, Daytona relied on solid starting pitching, a potent offense, and lights-out bullpen to secure a 7-4 victory over Fort Myers on Saturday. Showing the way was the Florida State League’s leading hitter Evan Crawford, going 3-for-5 with two doubles, two RBI while swiping his 22nd base. Matt Szczur was 2-for-5, while Logan Watkins was 2-for-5 with a triple and RBI. Justin Bour cranked his 18th homer, and along with Michael Brenly and Rafael Valdes enjoyed a multi-hit night.

Casey Harman was given his second start and turned in a solid performance. Harman allowed three earned runs in four innings. Aaron Kurcz followed and blanked the Miracle over his two innings. Jordan Latham allowed an earned run in his 1.2 innings of work, while Frank Batista slammed the door for his 18th save.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

Double-A – Tennessee Smokies (53-40)
The new-look Smokies kept things close on Wednesday then fell apart and Jeff Stevens imploded for five runs as Tennessee lost 10-2 to Mississippi. Matt Loosen was respectable, giving up three earned runs while walking five in five innings. Kyle Smit let things slip by allowing two earned runs in two innings. Then Stevens came in and was picked apart by the Braves’ offense. Oswaldo Martinez cleaned up and recorded the final out. Tennessee vets Josh Vitters and Steve Clevenger were 2-for-4, while David Macias drove in both runs.

GoodBrooks Raley showed up on Thursday, as the lefty allowed an earned run and struck out four in seven innings of Tennessee’s 5-4 victory over Mississippi. Kevin Rhoderick followed with a scoreless inning, while Rafael Dolis had a shaky ninth. Dolis allowed three earned runs to make it close.

Luis Flores came to the rescue for the offense, as he slammed two homers and drove in three in a 2-for-3 evening. Matt Spencer was 2-for-4.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

The Smokies showed signs of regaining the potent offense they had prior to promotions, but came up short in a 5-4 loss to Mississippi on Friday. Jae-Hoon Ha paced the ten hit attack by going 3-for-5 with a double. Rebel Ridling was 2-for-5 with a double. Ryan Searle, still adjusting to the starter role, allowed four earned runs in three innings. Oswaldo Martinez let in an earned run in two innings, while Jeffrey Beliveau and Marcus Hatley tossed-up zeroes the rest of the way.

Tennessee continued its offensive struggles on Saturday, as hard-luck pitcher Dallas Beeler wound up losing to Mississippi 5-2. Beeler tossed seven innings and allowed all five runs (four earned) while striking out three batters. Jeff Stevens pitched a scoreless inning. Timely hitting was the problem, as the Smokies recorded nine hits but failed to provide run support. Rebel Ridling led the way, going 2-for-3 with a double. Nate Samson was 2-for-4.

Triple-A – Iowa Cubs (43-51)
Debut Thursday didn’t go so well, as Nick Struck was shelled for seven runs (five earned) in Iowa’s 8-4 loss to Oklahoma City. Struck pitched 4.2 innings, and the two unearned runs were a result of his throwing error. Marco Carrillo came on and restored order, allowing an earned run and striking out three in 2.1 innings. Robert Coello and Blake Parker tossed a scoreless inning each. Tyler Colvin blasted his 17th homer, while Brett Jackson and Ryan Flaherty each doubled in their Triple-A debut.

Speed was on display for Iowa on Friday, as their swift new top to the order completely rattled Oklahoma City in a 7-1 victory. With a battery of major league veterans, the RedHawks withered as Brett Jackson was 2-for-5 with a double, triple, and a stolen base. D.J. LeMahieu drove in Jackson for the I-Cubs’ first run, while Tyler Colvin forced an error with his speed. The main beneficiaries were Bryan LaHair, who thumped a two-run homer (his 26th), and Welington Castillo, who was 3-for-4. Ryan Flaherty also clubbed his first Triple-A home run.

With a renewed offensive output and speedy defense, Jay Jackson looked like a new man as he tossed a free-and-easy seven innings, allowing one earned run and striking out four batters. John Gaub and Justin Berg held Oklahoma City in check the rest of the way.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

After spotting Oklahoma City two runs to start the game on Saturday, Iowa turned things over to their offense, defense, and relief pitching as they bested the RedHawks 5-2. Casey Coleman survived a shaky first inning, and ended up allowing two earned runs in six innings while striking out four batters. Freshly back in Iowa, Chris Carpenter tossed two scoreless innings, while Scott Maine picked up his ninth save by striking out the side in the ninth.

Once again, the I-Cubs’ newcomers sparked the offense. Brett Jackson was 2-for-3 with a double, two walks and an RBI. D.J. LeMahieu was 2-for-5 with and an RBI, while Ryan Flaherty was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI. For the second consecutive night, Bryan LaHair stroked two-run homer, as he was 1-for-2 with two RBI.

Also worth mentioning is that the addition of Jackson, Flaherty and LeMahieu, along with Marwin Gonzalez and Tyler Colvin, has significantly tightened Iowa’s defense. It has allowed them to turn five double plays in the past three games, while cutting off the gaps in the outfield.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

News and Notes
The Chicago Cubs optioned RHP Chris Carpenter and assigned RHP Dave Bush to Iowa. Iowa placed 3B Marquez Smith on the 7-Day disabled list. Right-handed pitcher Austin Bibens-Dirkx was assigned to Tennessee from Iowa. Peoria placed 2B Pierre LePage on the 7-Day disabled list retroactive to July 13. Outfielder Taiwan Easterling was assigned to Peoria from the AZL Cubs. Outfielder Zeke DeVoss and LHP Andrew McKirahan were assigned to the AZL Cubs.

Top Prospect Watch

  • Michael Burgess (OF) – .215, .315 OBP, .715 OPS, 20 Doubles, Triple, 11 HR, 48 RBI, 9 Outfield Assists (Daytona Cubs)
  • Chris Carpenter (RHP) – 0-0, 2.79 ERA, 9.2 IP, 3 ER, 8 K, 7 BB, 1.97 WHIP (Chicago Cubs) 2-1, 5.82 ERA, 21.2 IP, 14 ER, 22 K, 17 BB, 1.85 WHIP 3 Holds, 2 Saves (Iowa Cubs)
  • Micah Gibbs (C) – .254, .369 OBP, .673 OPS, 7 Doubles, HR, 17 RBI, Stolen Base, 28% Caught Stealing (Peoria Chiefs)
  • Reggie Golden (OF) – .274, .384 OBP, .763 OPS, 3 Doubles, 2 Triples, HR, 10 RBI, 5 Stolen Bases, 2 Outfield Assists (Boise Hawks)
  • Jae-Hoon Ha (OF) – .276, .311 OBP, .733 OPS, 15 Doubles, 2 Triples, 8 HR, 47 RBI, 7 Stolen Bases, 8 Outfield Assists (Daytona Cubs) .281, .329 OBP, .797 OPS, 7 Doubles, Triple, HR, 8 RBI, Stolen Base, Outfield Assist (Tennessee Smokies)
  • Brett Jackson (OF) – .256, .373 OBP, .816 OPS, 10 Doubles, 3 Triples, 10 HR, 32 RBI, 15 Stolen Bases, 3 Outfield Assists (Tennessee Smokies) .385, .467 OBP, 1.236 OPS, 3 Doubles, Triple, RBI, Stolen Base (Iowa Cubs)
  • D.J. LeMahieu (IF) -.328, .355 OBP, .717 OPS, 2 Doubles, 6 RBI, 2 Stolen Bases (Iowa Cubs)
  • Trey McNutt (RHP) – 1-3, 4.80 ERA, 45.0 IP, 24 ER, 26 K, 18 BB, 1.64 WHIP (Tennessee Smokies)
  • Hayden Simpson (RHP) – 0-1, 16.62 ERA, 4.1 IP, 8 ER, 2 K, 5 BB 3.23 WHIP (AZL Cubs)
  • Matt Szczur (OF) – .314, .366 OBP, .796 OPS, 15 Doubles, Triple, 5 HR, 27 RBI, 17 Stolen Bases, 3 Outfield Assists (Peoria Chiefs) .263, .300 OBP, .563 OPS (Daytona Cubs)
  • Josh Vitters (3B) -.281, .316 OBP, .753 OPS, 19 Doubles, Triple, 8 HR, 40 RBI, 3 Stolen Bases (Tennessee Smokies)

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  • Vivid_Reality

    I really hope Jay Jackson gets at least a September call up. He has pitched much better than his numbers indicate, FIP is a full run and a half lower. He can’t be much worse than what we have run out lately.

    • zonk

      He would have been up by now, it he wasn’t so terrible early in the year.

      He probably will get a September, because I think the Cubs need to add him to the 40-man after this season, which they surely will based on his upside. 

      The Iowa Rotation overall has been a train wreck all year

      • Aaron

         The problem is, if/when the Cubs decide to bring him up, he almost surely will be used out of the pen, where he has proven to be ineffective, and you get rid of a good weapon (his bat).

        I would like for the rotation later in the year to feature the likes of Jackson and McNutt, just to see how they handle the pressure, and to see if the Cubs need to go all-out and get CJ Wilson. I’d also love to see Dolis thrown back into the rotation, where I think he’d be better served….I’d also like to see Struck and Cabrera….but here’s the thing about the PCL….

        For whatever reason, 2011 is the season of the hitter in that league, and by a wide margin. In the past, pitchers haven’t fared as well as other leagues, but NOT to the extent of this year.

        I think that might be one of the reasons the Cubs have demoted a few of them to AA to see how they fare, then make a call from there as to if they’ll be released, or whatever, but the ball is flying out of the park in the PCL, so I’d much rather judge a pitcher by what he does in AA than at Iowa.

        The lowest ERA’s among starting pitchers in the entire PCL are:
        Dana Eveland-3.62 ERA
        Brad Mills-3.71 ERA
        Sam Narron-3.79 ERA
        Adam Ottavino-3.91 ERA
        Wade LeBlanc-4.02 ERA
        Brandon Dickson-4.18 ERA
        Sergio Perez-4.21 ERA
        *Ramon Ortiz-4.26 ERA

        Who would’ve thought the worthless Ortiz would rank in the top 10 in pitching in any league?!?!? That tells you about all you need to know right there.

        • GrantJones7

          McNutt is not ready, leave him in Tenn

  • Aaron

    Here’s a September lineup for you:

    Jackson-CF
    Castro-SS
    LaHair-1B
    Vitters-3B
    Colvin-RF
    LeMahieu-2B
    Flaherty-LF
    Castillo-C
    Jay Jackson-SP

    The ONLY way that happens is if Hendry and Quade are fired, so it’s unlikely, but that’d be one exciting lineup in my opinion…with Clevenger, Ridling, Gonzalez, Campana, and someone like Spencer or M. Smith on the bench

    • Demitri

      Looks good but won’t happen. We don’t play the young guys

      • paulcatanese

        I know, not even with 5 games left and out by 30. Quade believes in his vets, and dosent want to look bad.

    • GrantJones7

      I like it all except Vitters, leave him down in teh minors for more time, and Castillo is our backup behind Soto, i liek that more

    • Brp921

      I can see this scenario at the end of the year. Quade will play the veterans in late August and September, against the AA guys of teams that are out of the race, like he did last year. The Cubs will win the majority of those games like they did when he took over for Piniella. The Cubs will improove their overall winning percentage for the year, and JH will state in a press conference that overall the Cubs didn’t do to bad considering the injury plagued season they endured. He will go on to say that they are only two or three moves away from contention. He will also keep Quade who did such a good job in the face of so much adversity. Tom Rickets will OK all of this, and save having to spend money to hire a new front office while still paying this front office.

    • Anonymous47701

      I Like this lineup in some ways:

      Everybody is where they need to be except 3 players; Castillo should be the backup for Soto, Vitters might get traded or not come up until late next season, and Flaherty… well I think of him as a utility player, but i’m sure he could start at 3B in 2012. 

      • Brp921

        I like to see young guys like Castillo play every day, not sit on the bench, so I wouldn’t make him the backup. What really got my goat was bringing him up to sit on the bench most every day when Sosa was hurt. I can understand the arguement of giving him a taste of the show and letting him watch a guy who ,they say, calls a good game. What I can’t understand though is hardly ever let him play while he’s up here, so he can get advice from a veteran bench guy, who calls a good game, so the kid can learn from the mistakes he makes, and get a taste of what it takes to hit major league pitching on a regular basis.

        • Anonymous47701

          Koyie Hill was the Problem.

  • Redlarczykg

    The “stars” are alligned at First Base in the Cubs Minors.   Get rid of Pena, a .220 or lower hitter last 3 years, who doesn’t believe left field exists.

    Time to promote:

    LaHair AAA  IOWA. 349  27HR  77 RBI to Majors
    Ridling AA    TENN .298  13HR  50 RBI to AAA
    Bour    A      DAY   .289  18 HR 68 RBI to AA TENN
    Jones  A      PEO   .307  17 HR 63 RBI to A DAY

    • Anthony

      Agree, and move Hoilman to Peoria to complete the bumping

      • Tom U

        I like Paul Hoilman also, but he’ll probably stay at Boise all season. 

        The organization is really high on Ryan Cuneo, and they’ll want to give him an opportunity at first if they end up promoting Richard Jones. 

        • Anthony

          watched the 3 game series in Peoria

          RJones is raking, and needs to move up. As fortunate as he has been, RF Klafczynski is on the opposite end of bad luck, hitting shots right at the opponents mitts, but, I give the kid credit for stellar defense and an OF arm that is plusplus, to say the least. Think the ORG likes his maturity, and track record and swing should come around.

          Way too early to give up on any newcomer. Jones needs to go, Hoilman needs to move up. By the way, a scout buddy sent me some info on Klafczynski athleticism, pretty impressive stuff. You would be especially surprised, think #23 and the UP’s?

    • Michael H

      Dont forget Blake Lalli in TENN, who btw has been way underrated.. what guy makes the all star game 3 seasons in a row (with 3 different positions), minor league avg over .300 and isnt in the parent club already..?  Blake Lalli. Instead, the Cubs focus on college propects that have years in the minors, yet havent delivered.

  • Patrick_Schaefer

     Jim Hendry isn’t interested in trading Ryan Dempster or Matt Garza, who he expects to be key parts on the Cubs’ 2012 pitching staff. He does not exclude Carlos Zambrano from trade discussions, however, which makes his next start, scheduled for Friday against the Astros, an important one.While his no-trade clause is a major issue, he looked like a guy who could be in demand at the trade deadline when he beat the White Sox on June 20 at U.S. Cellular. His fastball was regularly around 93 mph and climbed even higher, touching 95. But the buzz he was beginning to create died out when he went on the disabled list with back problems. His return outing against Florida on Saturday was ugly, with him allowing 11 baserunners and eight runs in 4 2-3 innings. But the good news is that his velocity was still largely there. The last of his 94 pitches was clocked at 93, and he hit 94 on four pitches. He’ll have two more starts before the July 31 deadline, and still has a chance to pitch well enough to get contenders interested (especially if the Cubs agree to eat some of his contract, as they might). The two keys are his command and his velocity,
    Phil Rogers actually had some decent stuff to say. http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/whitesox/chi-your-morning-phil-buehrle-big-z-joe-d-20110718,0,2911705.story

  • cubtex

    Phil Rogers is at it again. Said Yankees and Cubs are talking major trade with Soriano being one of the players involved. Yankees are believed to covet Sean Marshall. Like Tom says about Rogers……consider the source.

    • Zach

      I dont see the Cubs trading Sean Marshall.  I think that the Cubs should try to trade Aramis or Grabow (if the Yankees want a lefty reliever) with Soriano.  To me Marshall and Castro are the only players on the major league roster who should be off limits.

      • cubtex

        Maybe trading Marshall would be the only way the Yankees would take on Soriano? As much as I like Marshal….if that is what it takes…I would do it.

        • JW

          I would absolutely trade Marshall if it meant unloading Soriano! To be honest, if Woody wasn’t stinking up the joint, this would be a non-issue.

      • Brp921

        The only Cub who is untouchable in my mind is Starlin Castro. I am for a total rebuilding.

    • Frank Keating

      I totally agree!  You can’t put much credence into what Rogers reports!

  • Anonymous47701

    the 2012 lineup If Soriano is traded

    B.Jackson-CF
    S.Castro-SS
    D.Barney-2B
    B.LaHair-1B
    G.Soto-C
    R.Flaherty-3B
    L.Montanez-LF
    T.Colvin-RF
    Pitcher

    bench

    D.LeMahieu-INF
    R.Ridling-INF
    W.Castillo-C
    T.Campana-OF
    M.Spencer-OF

    • JW

      I’m all for Soriano being traded by Barney can’t and never will be a 3 hitter!

    • Ripsnorter1

      If that is our 2012 lineup, we will surpass the KC Royals, the Orioles and the Astros for the worst team in MLB. The reasons are . . . 

      1. Jackson fan 1 for every 3 AB in AA. On a ML level, that would increase to 2 for every 3 AB. He isn’t ready yet.

      2. LaHair is not a ML hitter. Sorry, he’s a career AAA player that has a huge hole in his swing.

      3. Colvin’s confidence is shot, and he’s done on the ML level, probably forever, but certainly while he remains a Cub. Quade’s incompetence has succeeded in destroying him.

      4. Montenez is a parttime player, not a starter.

      5. Campana is not a ML OF. Not enough power to even get it to the girl’s line. Awful. 

      6. Not sure if the others are ready just yet:  Spencer, Ridling, LeMahiew, Flaherty.

      7. You have ZERO run producers in that lineup. Can’t win without run producers.

      • Anonymous47701

        I WILL have to disagree with you, Ripsnorter. I think you may be fixated on the idea that Mike Quade and Jim Hendry are Coming Back next year, which I hope they do not. Only an inexperienced ML Manager like Quade could demolish a players confidence like Colvin, but it does not mean it can’t be brought back. If the Cubs bring in a coaching staff that has plenty of ML experience, it could be a positive difference maker, ya never know. That Point you made about not winning without run producers, well I am not expecting the Cubs to Sign Pujols or Fielder during the offseason, instead they should hire a new front office, a new manager like Sandberg or Brenly, bring in a coaching staff with a lot of experience in the Majors, and see if they can develop players like LaHair into run producers. How do you think the Cardindals pulled that off when they signed Lance Berkman? 

        • Ripsnorter1

          Berkman? He has always been a run producer. They also have Holliday and Pujols as run producers. 

      • zonk

        I think everyone loves prospects, until they prove they suck at the Major League level. 
         

        • cubtex

          Exactly! Just like the backup quarterback in football.

      • gocubs

        Also, Campana is a bad fielder.  He has a terrible arm.  Very little upside on that guy other than his speed.  Cant hit much, even worse in the field.  

        • paulcatanese

          The only thing I would say to you here is that Campana was brought up for only one reason, his speed as a pinch runner,not hit home runs or take over an outfield position, that was made very clear before he was brought up. So I would say that he has lived up to what was expected of him.

      • Skeldor

        LeHair has a total of 136 AB and those were all in 2008 so how do you know he’s not a ML hitter?  That’s one small sample from the guy who tears it up in AAA and he still hit .250 with 3hr in that 2008 season.  I’d like to give him some more exposure to MLB pitchers to make that determination. 2009 .289 26hr 85rbi, 2010 .308 25hr 81 rbi and 2011 .349 27 hr 77rbi.  I just can’t understand why he didn’t get a look at the end of last year, just shows how bad the Cubs are at developing talent. 

        • Brp921

          The Cubs sure have nothing to lose.

    • Cubbie74

      Flaherty isnt ready.. batting .188 in AAA. Call me crazy, but Im not impressed, especially because this is very dejavu to his short .100 avg stint in AA last year. He finished well, in High A. At highest, he should be in AA. Call up utility player Gonzalez, who is the best defensive player in the farm system, as well as the best BA on the AAA Cubs.

  • cubtex

    Nats rumored to be shopping Gorzellany. I guess they aren’t that high on him either.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Halladay starting for the Phils vs. Cubbies tonight. 

    FORGETABOUTIT.
    We have ChiChi Lopez going for us tonight. He ain’t half bad. But the problem is that Halladay and the Phils are all good. 

    • John_CC

      No hitter tonight? 

  • Ripsnorter1

    Just in case ya’ll missed this . . . .

    With yesterday’s series loss to the Marlins, the Cubs are now 13 of the last 14. That’s right: they have dropped 13 of the last 14 series they have played.
    No winning streak longer than two games! No other MLB team has a winning streak that short!

  • Ripsnorter1

    Let’s talk Little Alfonso . . . .

    He had a big March/April: 93 AB….10 HR…20 RBI….258
    That’s because he heeets the fastball. Can’t hit the slider much. Early in the season pitchers aren’t as sharp with their breaking stuff, and he sees more fastballs.

    May: 84 AB….2 HR…9 RBI….286
    He fell off in the power dept. ….

    June: 57 AB….2 HR….6 RBI…..265

    July:
    44 AB….0….6….205

    • cc002600

      There CANNOT be a worse overall OF in baseball than Sori, Fuk, and Byrd. 

      Can there ?

      Absolutely horrendous.

      • John_CC

        You were probably asking rhetorically, but I wanted to know, so I looked at the OF rosters of the most suspect teams.  Mind you I am not going to spend the time to pour over stats and make comparisons to determine which player or group of might be worse.

        The White Sox OF is pretty bad. Quentin is far better than any Cub, but Pierre and Rios are worse than both Byrd and Dome…the Cubs might not have the worst OF in Chicago!

        Nationals OF sucks.

        Minnesota and Cleveland are pretty bad. 

        Again, this is without compiling stats of all starting OFs, but it would be interesting.

        • cc002600

          Agreed.  It might be a tossup, but I think I would rate the sox OF slightly higher, but that sure ain’t saying much, because both are so bad.  (and I hate the sox)

          Rios and Pierre are total dogs, but nobody is worse than Soriano. NOBODY.
          There cannot be a worse all around outfielder in baseball than soriano.

          They will never win anything until they get rid of that guy, or at the very least, put him on the bench for the next 3 years….

  • Tom U

    Thank you to everyone for your comments.

  • Bill Jilarj

    I love my Lovable Losers, the Chicago Cubs!