Another day, another run total in the (four)teens. For the opponent. Matt Garza had very little going for him today – he nibbled just off the edge of the plate, and when he came back into the zone he got hit. Hard. For what it’s worth, he says the mound in Peoria (where he pitched successfully just five days earlier) was jacked up. Aaron Harang didn’t seem to have a problem, but I’ll take Garza at his word…
- Garza wasn’t the only Cubs pitcher to have a rough day (such tends to be the case when the team gives up 14). Braden Looper, who had been looking good as of late, was a disaster. He gave up eight very earned runs on eight hits and two walks in just two innings of work. And remember: this is the Padres. Without Adrian Gonzalez.
- Scott Maine was just so-so in a late inning of work. Though he struck out the side, he was facing minor leaguers, and gave up a moon shot to smallest baseball player I’ve ever seen. Well, at least since I looked in the mirror freshman year of high school.
- Fernando Perez played a full game in center field today, going 0-4 at the plate, though he had some solid at bats. But he looked lost in center today, misplaying two balls off the center field wall and generally taking questionable routes. Reed Johnson, for his part, remains the one-eyed man in the land of the blind, going 1-2.
- Max Ramirez outproduced Koyie Hill’s entire Spring (who am I kidding, entire 2010 season) with one swing of the bat: a late grand slam that gave the Cubs their only four runs of the game.
- Jeff Baker went 1-3 playing third, and Blake DeWitt went 0-3 playing second (and looked uncomfortable on a couple grounders). I’m calling it now: even against a righty, Jeff Baker starts at second base to open the season.
- Perhaps the lone bright spot for the Cubs was *gasp* Jeff Samardzija. Not only did Samardzija strike out the side in his inning of work (he gave up one hit), but he looked good doing it. And better still, he actually pitched in the early innings against real Major League players. I’m not saying trade him now, but, well, you know.