Baez and the Cubs Walk-Off Team Japan – Cubs 7, Team Japan 5

Spring Training Game Twenty-One – Cubs (ss) 7, Team Japan 5

WP – Jensen Lewis (1-0) LP – Tekeru Imamura (0-1) Save – None

wflag-pubIn what was technically an exhibition game in which none of the stats will count, the Cubs walked off with a win over Team Japan on Friday afternoon at HoHoKam Park.

Javier Baez (3-for-4 with two home runs, three RBI and three runs scored) had a huge day at the plate that included a walk-off two-run homer in the ninth. Baez made it a 5-4 game in the seventh with a tape measure shot off Kenji Otonari. Dan Vogelbach (1-for-4 with a RBI) singled in the tying run in the eighth and set it up for Baez’s dramatics in the ninth. Baez called his walk-off home run, he told Welington Castillo, who was in the on deck circle, that he would not be hitting.

The Cubs jumped out to a 3-0 lead on a sac fly RBI off the bat of Alfonso Soriano (0-for-2 with a RBI), a run scoring double by Dave Sappelt (3-for-4 with a double, a RBI and three runs scored) and a RBI single by Josh Vitters (1-for-3 with a RBI) in the first inning.

Travis Wood could not hold the lead and gave up five runs, four earned, on seven hits with no walks and four strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings. But the Cubs’ pen did not allow a run over the last 4 1/3 innings. Cory Wade, Rafael Dolis, Casey Coleman and Jensen Lewis put up zeros and gave the offense a chance in the exhibition game.

Christian Villanueva (1-for-2 with a double) led off the ninth with his first non-home run hit of the spring. Villanueva was on board for Baez’s second home run.

Video of Baez’s Home Run from Boys of Spring

Click here from photos from Boys of Spring

Saturday is another split squad day for the Cubs. Half of the Cubs’ roster will face the Rangers at Cashman Field in Las Vegas, Jeff Samardzija against Nick Tepesch, while the other half will host the Royals at HoHoKam Park, Hisanori Takahashi against Bruce Chen.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO and @TheCCO_Minors

Quote of the Day

"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." – E.E. Cummings

Share on Fancred
  • P-Town Tom

    The kid called his shot? Man. I love his confidence.
    I love that he can back it up even more.

  • Neil

    Added a video to the recap from Tim at Boys of Spring, make sure you watch it and check out his photos.

    • paul john catanese

      Very nice swing, reminds me of someone else that raps the bat back and then , wow.

      • paul john catanese

        I meant Gary Sheffield

  • Dorasaga

    I know it’s just one game, and statistically, a meaningless expo game, but hey! Baez even earned a walk. Are we witnessing a future third baseman in the making?

    • Tony_Hall

      No matter where he plays he will be a plus bat at the position. I think his future position is a race between all the possible 2B and 3B in the organization. We only need one of them to stand out and take a position, so that he can take the other.


    nice swing!