Cubs Down on the Farm Report – 04/12/12

Hot bats are what’s in this spring, but there have been some cold results. Anthony Rizzo flashed big power while Josh Vitters has shown he is ready to play in Iowa. Jae-Hoon Ha remains steady in Tennessee. Rubi Silva has impressed at Daytona, and Wes Darvill is a surprise in Peoria. However, pitching still needs to catch up at every level.

To see where all of this is leading to … check out Thursday’s Down on the Farm Report.

Note: Monday’s report will cover games from Wednesday to Saturday. Thursday’s report covers games Sunday through Tuesday.

Low Class-A – Peoria Chiefs (2-3)
Pitching and defense were supposed to be the hallmarks of the Peoria Chiefs in 2012, but those areas came up short in Monday’s 6-3 loss to Quad Cities. Starter Ben Wells did his part, striking out three and allowing one earned run in four innings. However a passed ball by Rafael Lopez allowed a runner to get into scoring position, which would end up as an unearned run. Wes Darvill’s throwing error in the third eventually led to another unearned run. But the Chiefs’ offense was able to keep pace. Lopez and Darvill were able to make up for their errors by going 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI, and 2-for-4 with a double respectively. Brad Zapenas and Paul Hoilman also drove in runs to make the score 3-3. Kyler Burke came in for Wells and tossed four innings of shut-out ball, striking out three batters. With the score tied in the top of the ninth, Bryce Shafer imploded and gave up five earned runs, and the game ended with Peoria 8-3 losers.

It was thought that the Chiefs would be a little offensively challenged early this season due to their many young and inexperienced players. That showed up on Tuesday night as Peoria was three-hit in route to a 7-1 loss to Quad Cities. Only Zeke DeVoss, Eduardo Gonzalez, and Pin-Chieh Chen were able to manage hits, with DeVoss scoring the only run. In his second outing, starter Willengton Cruz struggled over 3.2 innings, allowing five runs, but only two earned, on seven hits, a walk, and two strikeouts. Scott Weismann came back from a poor showing to go 2.1 shutout innings with two strikeouts. Jeffrey Lorick continued his scoreless streak by striking out three in two innings. Luis Liria finished up by letting in two earned runs and striking out a batter in the final inning.

High Class-A – Daytona Cubs (1-4)
Acquired from the San Diego Padres, starter Zach Cates couldn’t find the strike zone in his organizational debut, as Daytona fell just short against Dunedin on Monday, 8-7. Cates walked four, and allowed seven hits and six earned runs in only one charged inning. Eduardo Figueroa took over for Cates after five batters in the second inning and proceeded to shut down the Blue Jays over four innings, striking out two batters. Brian Schlitter also had a strikeout in a scoreless inning. The D-Cubs tried to mount a comeback, as Elieser Bonne (1-for-4, outfield assist) singled and came home on a single by John Andreoli (1-for-4, stolen base, outfield assist) single in the bottom of the second. In the third inning, singles by Matt Szczur (1-for-3, stolen base) and Arismendy Alcantara (2-for-5, double) set the table for Greg Rohan (2-for-4, HR, 4 RBI), who delivered a three-run shot to cut the deficit to 6-4. However, errors by Rohan (one of three for the evening) and Alcantara tagged AJ Morris with two unearned runs in an inning of work. Another spurt occurred in the seventh, as Rubi Silva (1-for-5, RBI) singled home Szczur while Alcantara came home on a throwing error. Rohan then brought Silva home with a single to make the score 9-7. That’s where is would stand, as Ty’Relle Harris struck out two in two shutout innings.

Daytona rolled the dice by trying some players at new positions, and it ended up costing them as they fell 4-2 to Dunedin on Tuesday. The D-Cubs swapped Ronald Torreyes and Arismendy Alcantara, moving to them to short and second base respectively. Both committed errors that ended up costing three unearned runs in the eighth inning, hanging reliever Tony Zych with the loss. Starter Austin Kirk had a fine effort, striking out three over five scoreless innings. Casey Harman kept the streak going for two more innings, picking up his own strikeout. But Zych was touched for back-to-back doubles after Torreyes’ error, and then gave up another double after an error by Alcantara. Daytona got on the board in the second as Nelson Perez (2-for-4, two triples) tripled and came home on Elieser Bonne’s (2-for-4, two stolen bases, two RBI) single. That combination worked in the sixth inning, scoring the D-Cubs’ only other run. Matt Szczur was 2-for-5, while Torreyes was 2-for-4 with a double.

Double-A – Tennessee Smokies (4-2)
Sunday’s contest with Chattanooga saw starter Dae-Eun Rhee cruise through four innings, facing only fourteen batters, allowing no earned runs, and striking out three. However, an offensive surge by the Lookouts in the bottom of the fifth, while netting only an unearned run, seemed to take something out of him. Rhee started the sixth by giving up a solo home run, striking out two, and letting in another earned run before giving way to Ryan Searle. While a double brought in a third run for the inning, Searle was able to shut the door. Searle went another two scoreless innings, striking out two batters. Kevin Rhoderick then came in and set the side down 1-2-3 to bring home a 7-4 victory; Searle getting the win, and Rhoderick the save.

The Smokies’ offense staked Rhee to a 4-1 lead with a two-out rally in the top of the sixth. Logan Watkins (1-for-3) started it out with a walk. Jae-Hoon Ha and Justin Bour singled, driving home Watkins. Matt Cerda followed with a triple that plated Ha and Bour. Cerda came home on a Michael Burgess (1-for-3) single. In the top of the seventh, Nate Samson (2-for-3) led off with a single. Two batters later, James Adduci singled and Watkins was hit by a pitch to load the bases. A fielder’s choice by Ha scored Samson. Watkins then came home on a single by Bour. Ha ended the scoring, coming in on a throwing error on a hit by Cerda.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

The Smokies were unflappable on Monday, as they came from behind for the second day in a row to edge Chattanooga 3-2. Brooks Raley had a quality start, allowing two earned runs and striking out four over 8.1 innings. He even aided his own cause with a sacrifice fly to put Tennessee’s first run on the board. Alberto Cabrera delivered 1.2 scoreless innings and struck out two in relief. Frank Batista nailed down his third save with two strikeouts in the ninth.

Raley’s batting effort came in the fifth inning after Michael Burgess (1-for-2) and Michael Brenly (1-for-4) singled and Elliot Soto walked. In the sixth, Matt Cerda (1-for-4) doubled and went to third on Jae-Hoon Ha’s (2-for-4) single. A Justin Bour sacrifice fly brought Cerda home. It would remain 2-2 until the top of the ninth, as Rebel Ridling (2-for-3) walked to lead off. Pinch-runner James Adduci then came around with the go-ahead run on Elliot Soto’s (1-for-3, RBI) triple.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

The Tennessee bats fell silent on Tuesday, as they managed only two hits while losing 5-1 to Jackson. Jae-Hoon Ha continued to be steady, hitting safely in six of the first seven contests. However the big blow for the Smokies was James Adduci’s solo home run. Nick Struck wasn’t as dominant as in the opener; but after striking out five and allowing two earned runs in six innings, he was good enough to keep the team in the game. Both Casey Weathers and Dan Berlind struggled again, each allowed an earned run in an inning pitched. Joe Zeller, called up from Boise, struck out a batter in a scoreless ninth.

Triple-A – Iowa Cubs (3-3)
Iowa appeared to be in trouble on Sunday down 5-1 to Round Rock going into the bottom of the sixth inning. However, the I-Cubs’ bats came alive and brought home a 6-5 victory.

Tony Campana (3-for-4, double, stolen base) started the scoring in the third, doubling and eventually coming home on Luis Valbuena’s (2-for-3, RBI) sacrifice fly. The bottom of the sixth started off with consecutive singles by Brett Jackson (2-for-5, double, RBI) and Luis Valbuena, with a fielder’s choice by Anthony Rizzo putting runners at the corners. Jackson then came home on Welington Castillo’s (1-for-2, RBI) sacrifice fly. In the eighth, Campana led off with a single. After a single by Valbuena, a home run by Anthony Rizzo (1-for-4, 3 RBI) tied the score. Matt Tolbert then singled to lead off the ninth, and Brett Jackson doubled him home for the winning score.

Starter Jay Jackson looked to be in control, holding the Express scoreless and striking out two in four innings. However, Jackson ended up allowing four runs (three earned) and gave way with two outs in the fifth to Ryan Rowland-Smith. Rowland-Smith gave up an earned run in 1.1 innings with a strikeout. Jeff Beliveau pitched two scoreless innings and struck out four to hold Round Rock in check. Scott Maine then set the side down in order in the ninth to earn the victory.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

In what started out to be a laugher almost turned into a nail-biter as Iowa topped Albuquerque 10-6 on Monday. It was a coming out party for Anthony Rizzo, who was 3-for-3 with two home runs and three RBI. Adrian Cardenas also had a good showing, as he was 2-for-3 with a double, triple, and an RBI. Josh Vitters was not to be outdone, going 2-for-4 and two RBI, while starting pitcher Travis Wood smashed a two-run homer. Dave Sappelt was also 1-for-4 with a double and an RBI.

Travis Wood was also pretty good on the mound, going six innings and allowing three earned runs while striking out six batters. However, Manny Corpas made the game interesting by walking two, allowing two hits and three runs (two earned) in 0.1 innings. Esmailin Caridad came in and put out the fire, striking out two over 1.2 innings to earn a hold. Blake Parker then tossed a scoreless ninth.

Click Here for Complete Box Score

In a matinee on Tuesday, Iowa couldn’t overcome a three-run third innings by Albuquerque and ended up losing to the Isotopes 6-5. Randy Wells started and had a typical Randy Wells-type effort: six innings, four earned runs, and five strikeouts. Nate Robertson bounced back from a poor outing and pitched a scoreless inning. Frankie De La Cruz followed and allowed an earned run in only 0.2 of an inning. Jeff Beliveau was saddled with the loss after giving up an earned run in 1.1 innings. Both Adrian Cardenas and Josh Vitters stayed hot. Cardenas was 2-for-4 with a double, home run, and two RBI. Vitters also collected an RBI as he was 2-for-3. Blake Lalli and Luis Valbuena drove in runs, while Tony Campana stole two bases.

News and Notes
The Iowa Cubs placed IF Edgar Gonzalez on the 7-day disabled list. The Tennessee Smokies placed RHP Marcus Hatley on the 7-day disabled list; RHP Joe Zeller assigned to Tennessee. The Peoria Chiefs placed IF Kenny Socorro on the 7-day disabled list; 1B Ryan Cuneo assigned to Peoria.

CCO’s Prospect Watch

  • Javier Baez (IF) – Extended Spring Training
  • Jeimer Candelario (3B) – Extended Spring Training
  • Zeke DeVoss (2B) – .250, double, two RBI (Peoria Chiefs)
  • Reggie Golden (OF) – .158, stolen base (Peoria Chiefs)
  • Junior Lake (IF) – is currently inactive
  • Dillon Maples (RHP) – Extended Spring Training
  • Matt Szczur (OF) – .200, RBI, stolen base (Daytona Cubs)
  • Ronald Torreyes (2B) – .313, double (Daytona Cubs)
  • Josh Vitters (3B) – .412, three RBI (Iowa Cubs)
  • Dan Vogelbach (1B) – Extended Spring Training

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Quote of the Day

"A day without laughter is a day wasted." - Charlie Chaplin

Share on Fancred
  • Bryan

    Tom…thank you for the Farm report.  For many of us, it provides us with the only (well captured) view within the system.  Well done.

    Back to our “major league” team, I couldn’t help but chuckle when reading Soto’s comment in today’s online Trib.  He states…”We’ve been in close ballgames so far most of the time, one hit or one pitch away. Really we’ve been playing solid baseball.”

    How delusional, and just typical Cubs-speak.  The Bulls players and coach always critique themselves (in the press), and always strive for “something better”, even when winning.  The Blackhawks, similarly, also press for better play, and never settle for just “good effort”.  It has to translate into results on the scoreboard.

    I recognize that baseball is a long-drawn season, and it’s about momentum, but how about Byrd coming out and saying “you know, I really suck right now, and unfortunately isn’t helping the team a bit”. Or our new manager quickly stepping up and saying, “I’m not pleased with our early results nor approach to the game execution. Some guys needs to now get going, and take accountability”.  I’ve watched other teams early in the season, and for many you can see the early-season urgency to get-after-it.  For some reason this current Cubs roster reminds me of the really pathetic teams in the 70’s.  No heart, no character, no urgency. 

    And this whole free-agency, super 2 status, or whatever it’s called is just bad for baseball. Whatever happened to having the best 24 players on your roster?  Instead, we essentially crap another season, because by the time June rolls around, and now you introduce your truly best roster, the season is done. 

    How can you be in a major market, draw 3 million fans per year, have the third highest ticket prices in all of baseball, and yet settle for this product on the field.  Folks, something is just wrong with this equation….shame on the “business side” of baseball.

    • paulcatanese

      Bryan, that was well said and on the button.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      I don’t disagree with Soto’s comment.  They have been close in most games and could easily be 4-1

  • Cloycub13

    Hit the panic button folks, actually pound that darn thing into submission, beat on it and slam it around a little, and when you are done with that ask yourself one question… Did I really expect the team to be even good this year?

    They are hustling, I like the agressive nature on the basepaths (I actually saw a few 1st to 3rd on singles), starting pitching has been solid (Exception Maholm/Volstad), and the Cubs have been in every game! I think Sveum has been questionable in some of his moves late but I dig his style. The offense is simply attrocious! But again what did you expect?

    I agree that the super 2 thing is dumb, annoying, worthless and hampers teams from putting their best foot forward. I would think that if teams have payroll flexibility they should not be concerned about super 2. Simply lock up the gems to extensions (See what everyone else in the league is doing…however the Reds are going to regret having an aging Phillips and eventually aging Votto who is signed til he is 40 with albatross contracts…you watch, they will need a rebuild soon enough) and play the best team!

    I am with Aaron on this one:
    C-Castillo/Clevenger
    1B-Rizzo
    2B-Barney/Cardenas
    SS-Castro
    3B-Vitters/Stewart
    LF-Lahair
    CF-Jackson/Campana
    RF-Soler(God get this kid PLEASE)/Dejesus

    Soon folks soon! I am being patient, This team was in shambles and no Prince Fielder CJ Wilson Yoenis Centipede Cespedes and Yu Darvish’s of the world was going to get them out of it. Theo is good but he is not Jesus. And Jesus may have had a hard time putting a 2012 winning Cubs team on the field. Give them at least 1 draft. Last years draft class (The best I have seen in a long time) is all in EXST. It will take time. How about for now just enjoy the fact that baseball is here, Winter is over, and Summer is around the corner.

    Go Cubs!

    • John_CC

       Here, here!  Agreed top to bottom, Cloy. 

      (those Reds contracts are going to really hurt in the future)

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      Agreed…

  • cc002600

    I also agree with this notion about super 2 status. That has really annoyed me from the beginning. I could see if the cubs still had a large payroll and were trying to control costs that were exploding.

    But my God, their payroll is nowhere near what it once was, and after this year their financial committments will be basically nothing, besides Soriano.  Since when did we become KC or Pitt ?????

    Talk about pinching pennies, gimme me a break.  Think about it, if they don’t sign any BIG free agents this winter, their payroll could be 65M next year. 

    That’s a slap in the face to the fans when you are paying for some of the higher ticket prices in baseball.  I’m not saying they should go out and spend stupid money, but holy cow throw us a bone. 

    You can’t rebuild completely through the farm system, because if you do, you are looking at 5 or 6 years MINIMUM.

    • Ripsnorter1

      How much homegrown talent is on the Yanks roster? Boston? Tampa? Cards?

      Answer: not much.

      Pittsburgh has been rebuilding for 21 losing seasons in a row. KC? I’ve lost count….

      How many Yanks are homegrown?
      Neither C…Russell or Stewart are from other organizations.
      1B…Texieria is not homegrown.
      2B…Cano is homegrown.
      SS..Jeter…is also homegrown.
      3B…ARod is not.
      LF…Gardner is homegrown.
      CF…Granderson…not.
      RF…Swisher…not.

      Bench…Jones, Ibanez, Chavez are not.

      Eduardo Nunez is.

      Pitching staff….
      CC, Garcia, Kuroda, Logan, Rapada, Soriano, Wade are not homegrown.

      Hughes, Nova, Rivera, Phelps, Robertson are.

      Totals: Yanks have 9 homegrown players on their 25 man roster.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        His Super 2 status is not. Super 2 is based on days at the big league level. Rizzo was optioned, not accruing Major League time yet this season.

        As for options, after this season he still has one option year left.

      • cc002600

        yea, I guess this is more of a statement about BJax.

      • gary3411

         **25 man roster**

        And 9 is a good amount, especially when that group includes Cano, Jeter, Nova, Rivera. Plus a few of the other studs were acquired trough trades which only could have happened with good homegrown talent to deal.

        Yankees are not the most talented team out there.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Which team, in your opinion, is the most talented? Rangers? 

          • gary3411

             I’ll take the Rangers, Angels, and Tigers over Yankees in a 7 game series if my money is on the line.

          • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

            I agree.  The 3 you mentioned are absolutely loaded. 

          • John_CC

             The Rays.

          • gary3411

             Probably the Phillies too.

        • John_CC

           Two certain, 1st ballot HOF, and a potential HOFer in Cano.  Not too shabby.  Toss in Petite and Williams and Posada the Yankees have been so successful exactly because they have produced such important, successful core players for the past 2 decades.

      • John_CC

         9 out of 40?  Where did you get that figure?  You should go back recount that.  Maybe 9 out of the active 25 man roster, I would accept that.  By my count the Yankees 40 man is 50% “homegrown” i.e. drafted or signed by the Yanks.

        • cubtex

          that is what he said. Re-read

          • John_CC

             It is not what he wrote initially. Before being edited, it said 40 man, as Gary noticed and pointed out as well. I’m sure it was an honest mistake.

    • victor59

      No team in baseball can build completely through there farm system and be a consistant winner . The Ricketts family has not spent a dime since they have bought the cubs and brought in theo and company to spin us a new way to win philosophy that is nothing more than a smoke screen for not spending any money. If they didnt have the resources to put a winner on the field and give us a chance to win,  they should not have bought the team.Its tough enough , but then to have to put up with a  miser for a owner just gives you no hope. Reminds me too much of the Wrigley era. 

      • Ripsnorter1

        They bought DeJesus and Maholm.

        These won’t bring victory. But they spent that much money.Oh. They bought Team Theo and a McDonalds, too.

      • Hoosierboy3423

        ok so the guys they have now arent contributing, but if we added 2 big free agents this year would it really have made much of a difference. If we wait on our young guys to be ready to come up and then spend some money in FA to fill the holes doesnt that seem like a better plan. Why start spending money on FAs and put them on a team thats not going anywhere. Sounds like spending money just for the sake of it to me.

        • Ripsnorter1

          The Cubs could have been competitive in 2012 with some judicious moves. 

  • Tom U

    Nobody, including myself, should ever feel that a major market club like the Cubs develop entirely from the minor leagues. The revenue to compete for players in the open market is there, and the need to capture the attention of fair-weather fans drives that.

    However, a team does need to establish a core of homegrown players, and continue to augment that core. The Yankees did it in the late 90’s with Jorge Posada, Derek Jeter, Bernie Williams, Andy Pettite, and Mariano Rivera as their core. They continued to supplement them over the years, and used touted prospects such as Alan Jackson, Ian Kennedy, and Jesus Montero in deals. 

    The only player the Cubs can say is a core player right now is Starlin Castro. Jeff Samardzija may become one, but it’s too early to tell at this time. Until the Cubs establish a core, going out and getting high priced players is unproductive.

    How soon people forget about the dangers of free agent contracts. Previous management was handing out guaranteed deals like free samples at a Sam’s Club on Saturday mornings. New management is showing some fiscal responsibility. Waiting until the Super 2 date places potential core players under team control for another year. Hopefully, when the Cubs are closer to competing, those dollars that are saved can be used to complete the picture. 

    • Bryan

      Tom…well stated comments.  My only “exception” is on this whole Super 2 mentality for the sake of keeping a player under control for another year.  For so many die-hards, how many times have we heard “next year, next year, etc” from management.  I still contend you play the best 24 that represents your organization, and deal with the financial side separately.  I’m all for spending money wisely (aka, not making another Bradley/Soriano move), but I don’t subscribe for promoting nor supporting a mediocre product (current state) for the sake of saving a few bucks and holding back talent that’s ready to play at this level.  It just sends a bad message to your fan base.  And I contend that you bring up a Jackson and Rizzo, increase the energy on the roster (and the fans), and you might strike lightening relative to performance and results.

      • Tom U

        Bryan, here’s a little something for everyone to chew on. Here’s a link to the Yankee’s yearly attendance records. 

        http://www.baseball-almanac.com/teams/yankatte.shtml 

        From 1990 to 1995, before the establishment of the “Evil Empire”, the Yankees were around the AL average for attendance despite finishing no higher than second over that time (they were first in the 1994 strike year). After that, the Yankees went on a streak of 16 playoff appearances in 17 years, and have had basically 3 million attendance plus since 1998. 

        Maybe getting down to the NL average for attendance, establishing fiscal responsibility, and establishing a core of talent is what the Cubs need?

    • cc002600

      Tom,

      I agree with everything you said, and I’m not at all advocating spending crazy money again.  But at some point you need to bring in some marquee players that will be impact players. My worry is that more and more we are seeing teams lock up their own impact players, leaving less and less of them to go on open market.

      So that means you could be left with just your own farm system to build a team, which I am excited for, but that will take a long time. A loooooong time.  Not 1 or 2 years, but 5 or 6. 

      They now have the money available again. For example, if this winter they do not go after a guy like Cole Hamels, I will be very disappointed….that’s assuming he doesn’t re-sign with Phillies.  This is a big market, not Kansas City.

      • cubtex

        If Cole Hammels even makes it to free agency(he might get locked up before like Matt Cain) unless the Cubs outbid everyone else by a ton…..why would Cole Hamels want to sign here??? They will probably be 25 games under .500 this year with a shaky bullpen.
        I have been saying the same thing as you for months. There was no need to put such a terrible product on the field for this year! They are going to lose fans and a lot of money by people not showing up to the ballpark.

        • cc002600

          yes, I said that about Hamels….good chance he re-signs with Philly…..and that was my overall point about free agency now….more and more we are seeing the best FA’s being locked up by their own teams before they even get to free agency, whichs basically leaves you with crap in the FA market.

          • Hoosierboy3423

            all the more reason to do a better job developing home grown talent.

    • John_CC

       Thanks for the great work Tom and level headed, pragmatic long view.

  • gary3411

    Anyone know what the deal is with Shark’s contract after this year? Did we pick up the club option for this year and we can next year as well? Then after that is it off to free agency for him because he was under a major league contract when drafted? That really would stink if we get only 2 more years of him, or is he still under control until the 6 years is up (2014 or 2015?)?

  • cubtex

    Tom….Nice to see Vitters hitting but do you have any idea how he is looking defensively? Has he been playing strictly 3B? Thanks in advance.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      I know you asked Tom … The Cubs are happy with the progress he’s made defensively to start the season. They have seen improvements with both his fielding and throwing.

      • Tom U

        I concur with Neil. The only bad play I saw was an off-balance throw in which he tried to make a play with his arm. He still needs to know when to stick those in his back pocket.

        • cubtex

          Thank you! I am going to check out a couple of games this weekend in Round Rock. Excited to see some of the future.

      • cubtex

        Thanks Neil. Has he been playing 3rd base exclusively?

        • Tom U

          Every game has been at third. He got a day off, with Adrian Cardenas subbing.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Sorry, I missed this earlier. Yes he has as Tom said, except the one game that Cardenas played.

  • John_CC

    Sveum is benching Byrd. 

    And just think, exactly one year ago Quadsie had him “hitting” in the three hole. 

    • paulcatanese

      Amazing, Sveum is listening to me, said it yesterday, give Byrd a rest:)

    • cubtex

      He is sitting him for 1 day. Expected back in lineup Friday.

      • John_CC

         One game at a time…

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        I heard a couple of games at least.  I like the move and think it could help the guy.  I almost feel sorry for him because he just looks lost…

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Thanks Tom for another great update …

    • Tom U

      Your welcome Neil. And thank you to everyone for your comments.

  • Redlarczykg

    The “New Cub Way” looks an awful lot like the “Old Cub Way”? 

    • John_CC

       I disagree.  I have seen aggressive base-running and improved defensive efforts.  Yes, the one run losses are awful and too familiar, but this team has also shown more fight late in the games they are losing. “The Cubs Way” is a fundamental that will take time to permeate the through the system. 

      • paulcatanese

        Kind of agree John. They are trying to play better baseball. Their are pieces out there that surpass the effort from last year,just not enough for a winner.
        Kind of good pitch-no hit, good hit-no pitch. At least it’s clear why they lose and are not “inventing” ways to do so.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      I completely disagree as well.  Things look a lot different to me and it’s only a few months in!  I’m very excited about what I consider to be a new direction. 

  • John_CC

    Tom, Neil et al,

    If, big “if”, Stewart is hitting .265ish with some pop and playing a solid 3B AND Vitters can get his bat going and play acceptable 3B at the AAA level … who is the trade chip? 

    • Tom U

      Stewart.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

       Stewart

  • paulcatanese

    Thanks Tom, good report, like it.

  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    Why is Junior inactive?

    • Tom U

      He has a problem with his back.

    • Tom U

      He has a problem with his back

  • Alancolester

    I am 55 and I give up I’ll die before they will!!!!

  • Alancolester

    There is no such thing as a diehard cub fan you will diehard before they win 55 years iv waited how long will u

  • ttt

    Hello,  Does anybody know where I can find the schedule for the Cubs Extended Spring Training in Mesa?  Thanks – any unput would be greatly apprecitated.