Enhanced Box Score: Red Sox 4, Cubs 3 – June 16, 2012

Another one-run loss for the Cubs, who are the best in baseball at losing one-run games.

Jeff Samardzija had decent stuff tonight, for the most part, but good at bats by the Red Sox drove up his pitch count, and, by the end of the 5th inning, he was already at 95 pitches. Luis Valbuena provided all of the Cubs’ offense on a three-run homer.

Alfonso Soriano was excoriated by the fans after failing to run out a liner that was dropped by Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks. Soriano was thrown out easily, though he may have been thrown out had he run hard out of the box, anyway. That said, dude has to stop doing stuff like that if he wants the fans on his side. He does everything else right, believe it or not.

Brett Taylor is the editor and lead writer at Bleacher Nation, and can also be found as Bleacher Nation on Twitter and on Facebook.

97 responses to “Enhanced Box Score: Red Sox 4, Cubs 3 – June 16, 2012”

  1. this old cub 2

    We get one walk and they get FIVE, just what Dale is preaching…need more pressure on the other pitcher.

  2. Stinky Pete


    He ripped the hell out of that ball and thought Middlebrooks caught it. Why would he run if he thought it was caught?

    Baseball on Fox.

    I accept they are going to lose 90+ games this year. But having to listen to the two bozos on fox makes a loss sooooooo much worse.

    1. ThereWillBeCubs

      National media is only tolerable when you’re winning

    2. Toby

      noticed when Pedroia grounded out soon after that Buck and McCarver pointed out Pedroia running hard to first. I can’t stand those two.

    3. SirCub

      If I were a billionaire, I would buy Fox just so I could cancel Fox Saturday baseball. And, like, 90% of the rest of their programming.

      1. MichiganGoat

        Just leave the Simpsons and I agree.

  3. Chuck

    Agree with dale on soriano play.100% of players would have quit running on that play.

  4. art

    i guess i’m the one in the minority. he thought it was caught and took his eye off the play and looked to first base. that’s when he stopped running, turned and looked to first disappointed. my point is he should always keep his eye on the ball till he’s sure it’s caught, he didn’t. i think Dale is wrong. when i played i never took my eye off the ball as most of the guys i played against and with. just my opinion.

    1. Tim
    2. Cooper R

      Never supposed to watch the ball. You run to first as hard as you can no matter where the ball is and you pick up your base coaches…I still think Soriano just stopped because it was a reaction, not because he was lazy out of the box or anything.

      1. GoldFinch

        These things have been going on with him for years! It’s not a “one shot reaction.” Please.

        1. Cooper R

          Not sure what you are quoting since I never said that but do you honestly think he would’ve been safe if he had ran it out? It’s a non-issue and his teammates and coach are backing him on it. If he did something wrong Sveum wouldn’t be afraid to address it (like he did with Starlin).

        2. Kyle

          No, they haven’t.

          Like so many Cubs fans, you are getting your “coincidentally non-white players I hate” mixed up.

          1. Mrp

            Really? I thought you were better than that.

            1. Kyle

              You did? I’ve been beating this drum for awhile.

              Cubs fans, fueled by a few members of the local media, have managed to turn every season for the last few years into a “let’s run some player out of town” drumbeat, and it’s just a huuuuuuge coincidence that they’ve all been minorities.

              I don’t think they are being intentionally racist, just giving in to subtle stereotyping when they mentally classify players and plays. It becomes even more obvious when they can’t get straight which players they dislike for which reasons (Soriano is striking out, being overpaid and being prone to defensive gaffes, but nobody’s ever criticized his hustle. Teammates universally praise his hustle and work ethic).

              If Steve Clevenger hits that ball and stops, being thrown out by 45 feet instead of 50, it would have been a non-issue that everyone would have fogotten about already.

              1. Cooper R

                You’re right, it would’ve been forgotten if it were Clevenger but not because he’s white, it’s because of expectations. Plus, some Cubs fans always seem to have to place blame on something (goat, Bartman, etc.)

              2. GoldFinch

                Come on Kyle. Race has nothing to do with why fans like or dislike players! Was Andre Dawson despised by fans? Was Sosa despised by fans? Was Fergie despised by fans? I can go on and on.

                1. Kyle

                  Sosa was toward the end. This is a recent phenomenon.

                  1. GoldFinch

                    Sosa was run out of Chicago because he cheated! It had NOTHING to do with race.(Also, he did NOT respect teammates. Ask Kerry Wood,LOL)

                    1. Luke

                      He was run out well after the corked bat incident.  The final straw was him leaving the ballpark before end of the game at the end of the season, not the corked bat.

                  2. Serious Cubs Fan
                    1. Leroy K.

                      I was about to comment on Derrek Lee, Aramis Ramirez, Zambrano (who did it to himself), Juan Pierre, Jacque Jones, Moises Alou, Nomar Garciappara. I could go on quite a bit.

                  3. Serious Cubs Fan
                2. MichiganGoat

                  Racism is very real- even in sports.

              3. MichiganGoat

                It’s tough to believe this but it is very real. Consider how everyone would respond if Reed Johnson, Tony Campana, or Ryne Sandberg didn’t run that play out? Now consider if Milton Bradley, Jacques Jones, or Sammy Sosa? Do you see the inequality?

                It may not be intentional but there is something here. Too often we give the “hustle” “plays the right way” “hard working” mantra to players that are not minorities, but give the “showboat” “shellfish” “lazy” labels to minority. Step back and look at this objectively and one sees there is a double standard.

                1. GoldFinch

                  No, no I really don’t see the the inequality.

                  1. NCMoss

                    Since you don’t see a problem with ‘Jap slap’, you wouldn’t.

                  2. MichiganGoat

                    I understand, it is difficult to see or believe. We’ve spent years teaching equality and hate to believe inequality still exists, but it does. Visit the juvenile justice system and you will see the inequalities in our society. Baseball has those same issues, but I completely understand why you may not see it. It took me years of working in the system to see it.

                  3. calicubsfan007

                    Michigan: how did your kids do with that quote?

                    1. MichiganGoat

                      Sorry meant to reply earlier, the responses were quite weak. Most just replied with I don’t get it or I don’t care. This is typical with my students 1 in 100 are quality, but the quote was a good one.

                    2. calicubsfan007

                      Michigan: Well, no one said that the teaching of those kids would be easy. Still, thats sad. Thanks though.

                  4. calicubsfan007

                    @NCMoss: Please don’t start that up again. Its done, no need to bring that up.

                2. Cooper R

                  I think the fans would be even more angry if Campana had stopped because he would have a legitimate chance at beating it out. Milton Bradley is just a plain idiot so that example is a poor one and has nothing to do with race.

                  1. Kyle

                    Well, first, no, not even Tony Campana beats that play out. Nobody beats that play out.

                    But more importantly, Milton Bradley wasn’t any bigger of a raging douchenozzle idiot than, say, Ryan Theriot, who was beloved for his hustle and grit despite being an awful defender who was known to make brutal baserunning gaffes and other mistakes.

                3. @cubsfantroy

                  I hate to say it, but MichiganGoat is very right on that. You see it all the time whether you like to or not. It is sad, but it is the state of affairs in sports all around the world.

                4. Vladimir

                  I kind of agree with that. That’s cause we live in a society where fox new lies and propagandizes every single day. “The blacks are taking your money, the blacks are popping out babies for welfare and abort their babies”. When infact whites recieve more welfare and commit more abortions. Blame it on right wing media and STUPID americans.

              4. Gcheezpuff

                Cubs fans also ran Jim Hendry out of town as well… Last I checked, fat white guys weren’t a minority. Who are you referring to anyway, Milton Bradley… Cause he was a class act. D Lee was loved in this town. This is a garbage statement, I am sure racism exist with some fans, but this blanket statement is a bunch of nonsense. Stop looking for what you want to see so you can complain about it.

                1. MichiganGoat

                  I’m not complaining I’m simply observing what I see and I know is real. My examples might be weak, but the point is very valid.

                  1. Cooper R

                    The point is valid but I don’t think it is connected to this play. The Cubs are bad, fans are pissed and they needed a scapegoat tonight and they made it Sori. That’s just my opinion though.

                2. Kyle

                  Individual examples don’t disprove the trend. It’s not “Cubs fans hate every minority player and love every white player.” It’s “when looking to vent their frustrations, the local media lead fans in a selective sight that tends to focus on the negatives of minority players.”

                  And in general, the point isn’t even that they are wrong about those players. It’s that they focus on *those* players.

                  For every one of the offenses these players have committed, I guarantee you we can find white players who have done the same without comment. Athletes in general tend to be alpha-male, selfish jerks, and none of them can live up to the “Hustle 100% of the time, every second of every game” mentality over a 162-game baseball season.

                  1. DocPeterWimsey

                    Really, the only exception of whom I can think is Prior.  The local sports media was convinced that Prior’s problems were all in his head: except, of course, those people who were convinced that Prior was faking it!

                    Ultimately, this is much more of a cultural problem.  Our bizarre conflation of “success” and “effort” instead of “success” and “opportunity” (which might well have racist influences in the first place) is a problem that is far, far bigger than baseball.

              5. Ted

                I’m curious who’s on this list of players. If its Bradley/Soriano/Sosa I think you’re conflating racism with genuine frustration around three highly-paid players not living up to expectations (and two of them also being, at the time people were upset with them, a bit difficult).

              6. josh

                I don’t think race was an issue when the fans booed soriano. I just think people want to see good baseball from their team. Soriano has had a history of not running out of the box. I think he has been trying harder lately, despite the bad wheels. This just looked bad because he’s been under the microscope for past lack of hustle…this too shall pass… everyone seems too eager to point fingers on race issues. i don’t see the connection in this case

          2. GoldFinch


  5. Joshua Edwards

    What would it take to get Middlebrooks?

    Dempster, Soriano (give or take $1 mil) + ?

    1. @cubsfantroy

      I doubt Boston is even considering getting rid of him. If they did, it would take quite a few of our top prospects in my opinion. I could be wrong, but that is how I am seeing it.

  6. Toby

    I’ve been arguing with Goldfinch ever since the Soriano play happened. A player’s instinct is to stop running when they hit a linedrive that appears to have been caught.

    1. GoldFinch


  7. North Side Irish

    Just got home from the game and it was pretty brutal for Soriano…haven’t heard booing like that before. I understand why he stopped running, but it looked really bad when the ball was dropped.

    On the other hand, the Cubs fans were out tonight which was a nice change after the Tigers fans invasion this week.

  8. Joe N

    No offense Brett, but I think you’re wrong. I don’t think that it would matter how Soriano played at this point. He’s toast.

    The only possible exception is that somehow he’s playing left field in Game 7 of the World Series ( for the Cubs, of course ) and makes a game saving diving catch in the top of the 9th. Of course, he’d still have to have a walk-off Grand Slam in the bottom of the 9th to have any real chance of being golden with the fans. ( I’m only half-kidding, and that’s only because I don’t expect him to be on the Cubs when they get to the World Series. )

  9. notcubbiewubbie


    1. GoldFinch


    2. SirCub

      Considering that that “CRAPPY PLAYER” is the best hitter on our team right now, what does that say about the rest of the guys on the squad?

  10. calicubsfan007

    I just don’t get why Soriano stopped running, even when he thought someone caught the ball. Even when the ball squirted out, Soriano looked confused and still didn’t run.

    1. NCMoss

      Watch the video again. He jogs a bit and realizes it’s a lost cause.

      1. calicubsfan007

        NCMoss: You might be right with that. Just knee jerk reaction to get pissed at Sori for that. Maybe it’s because we as Cubs fans are used to Sori not really running after he hits it.

        1. GoldFinch

          Yes calicub! Soriano has always “gloated” at his homers and not done much else since becoming a Cub. You hit the nail on the head! ya, he will get his homers, but I would trust a rookie with runners in scoring position before I would trust a Soriano.

          1. calicubsfan007

            A lot of news coverage on this hit. I am wondering if this is the straw that broke the camel’s back that is the relationship between Sori and the Cubs fans.

            1. Cooper R

              It’s really stupid. He would have been out either way.

  11. @cubsfantroy

    I really need to see this play.

    1. calicubsfan007

      Cubsfantroy: the Sori play? Maybe it’s on youtube?

      1. @cubsfantroy

        Yeah, I can’t find it anywhere. I looked on youtube but didn’t see it. If anyone has a link for it, could you post it?

        1. calicubsfan007

          Cubsfantroy: I found news articles that talk about it, I have found the Dale Sveum interview about it, I can’t find the bloody replay of it though.

  12. Twiz
    1. @cubsfantroy

      Thanks Twiz.

      All I am going to say is, I don’t blame him and I have seen quite a few players do that before. I am sure it was a knee jerk reaction by fans to boo him. As far as listening to that last little bit of commentary, those guys can suck it. The whole you have to let the umpire call you out bs.

      1. calicubsfan007

        Cubsfantroy: Those FOX guys are those guys in high school who got beat up by the jocks. And I think they are contractually obligated by the Cards to rip the Cubs a new one.Take it with a grain of salt.

    2. calicubsfan007

      @Twiz: Thanks. It just looks really, really bad to see Sori stare at the ball and then somewhat jog. Still kinda annoyed, but I also feel really bad for Sori.

  13. calicubsfan007

    Soriano quote from interview after the game: “It’s unfair. They don’t understand the game.” Harmless quote, but can be misconstrude as being arrogant. I feel bad for Sori.

    1. @cubsfantroy

      I don’t know if I feel sorry for him because of his past play of laziness. Although he is getting a bum rap right now for this play.

      1. calicubsfan007

        Cubsfantroy: I feel bad that he’s being ripped a new one. I am annoyed about this play, but I still feel sorry for Sori. The people who hate Sori might have a field day with that quote.

        1. @cubsfantroy

          Sadly, yeah they are. I understand what he is saying by the quote and it is quite harmless, but other fans are going to let him have it for a few days in the news and at the games.

          1. calicubsfan007

            Cubsfantroy: Cubs fans aren’t forgiving when they feel like they got screwed by a person. Just ask Bartman.

  14. Allen

    Soriano sucks

  15. Kevin

    I like “sorry asshle” unfortunately he’s getting older and his knees are shot. He’s not the reson the Cubs are losing!

  16. Glotzbach

    Valbuena seems to look like a decent pick-up eh?

    1. calicubsfan007

      So far,yes. But, as Doc says, it’s a small sample size.

      1. Njriv

        True, I hope he keeps doing what he’s doing.

  17. Drew7

    Just got back from the game. Here are my observations in a nutshell:

    Mather and Baker looked terribly overmatched.

    Valbuena looked good, especially on the HR.

    Sori took a verbal beatdown, but it seemed like it took Middlebrooks an eternity to drop that ball. He hit a rocket and was disappointed- its a non-issue for me.

    A perfect example of what the “selectively-aggressive” approach was shown by the Sox tonight; they were sputtering on offense and still had Shark laboring all night.

  18. Madprizamwoo

    So if were able to trade:

    Sorino for cash savings of $9mm
    Dempster for top 5 prospect in a top 10 farm system

    Would we be happy?

    Or do we think we can get more?

  19. Mike F

    I think it’s wonderful we all want to trade people and get all they are worth, but Soraino is completely wrong here. He’s loafed and failed to run out plays before, this isn’t new to him. But in his defense, he isn’t a bad person and I don’t think he’s a poor work ethic guy, he’s just not a hustler or a head in the game type. The big issue is his play, not his leadership and off field work would and should scare any mgt team in terms of having young players around him. I’ll say it this way, he’s not a win or die trying guy in my book and never will be.

    As to the fans, hell yes they have right to boo him. They shell out a lot of money for this abortion and Soriano was wrong, we need to quit making excuses and trying throw around guilt here that isn’t warranted. Fans, not Tom Ricketts will be shelling out 45 Million for a very poor performer for the Chicago Cubs with little hope of doing anything to get any meaningful portion of that back. And his quote is moronic, he’s got plenty of gaul to talk about fans not understanding the game and being unfair. If anyone has failed over a career to understand the beauty of the game and value of winning, it’s Alfonso Soriano.

  20. Drew7


    While walking towards Wrigleyville about 2 hours before the game, we passed by a couple guys jogging. I saw one wearing a shirt that read, “I play for the National League”. When I looked up, I realized it was Dempster getting his day-after running in!

    Im not gonna even try to act like I wasnt star-struck. Honestly, I came very close to squealing (kind of like a “sque…wait…be cool. Act like this happens all the time…OMG that was Ryan F’ing Dempster!).

    1. Dustin S

      I know what you mean, we walked right by Theo and the Ricketts after a game a couple of weeks ago. Wish I could have thought of something to say but it was such a surprise we just left them alone and kept walking.

      1. Cheryl

        You did the right thing. These guys deserve their privacy. I lived in an area of California where I saw Hollywood stars many times. Never did I approach any of them. When they are performing or in front of a crowd, that’s different. But when they are relaxing,trying to grab a meal, that’s off limits.

        1. Drew7

          I mean, its not like shaking hands with the guy and saying hi would be that big of a deal.

  21. Dustin S

    I have to second the point btw that the national broadcasters are pretty hideous to listen to. They’re so bad about generalizing and exaggerating. I forget which one it was tonight that said he expected the Cubs would need more than 5 years to be a competitive team. Such a ridiculous comment when trying to predict anything more than beyond 2013 at most is a crapshoot. These are the same guys that pick the World Series winner in Spring Training.

    1. Serious Cubs Fan

      So essentially these guys are a bunch of Hawk Harrelson wanna be’s lol? Hawk I like how he has passion for his team but that guy is just sipping the cool aid a little to much. Probably the most obnoxious homer broadcaster I have a ever heard. I can’t stand listening to him broadcast. He is loud, obnoxious and says stuff completely out of his ass. Not to mention his commentary is awful and his broadcasting chemistry with with steve stone is the worst I have ever seen. Sometimes there just talk right over each other and a lot of the times the broadcast just goes dead silent and you wonder if they took a 5 minute break. Also one of my favorite things he said in a broadcast earlier this year was that he thought Alexei Ramirez was the best SS in chicago!!! The guy is a complete idiot!!

  22. Leroy K.


    Now….Go through this list, and see how many you can remember. I got 105/180. I know SOME of you can do better than that.

  23. chris

    Im such a jerk for wanting someone to run out a ball. So sorry alfonso, i’ll never boo again. Wait, im going again tonight, ill boo you again

    1. Leroy K.

      Everyone is guilty of that….not just Alfonso….you better boo everyone that doesn’t run it out…or slows down. Everyone has done it and everyone will still do it. Him running out that ball, he still doesn’t beat the throw. Campana yes, Soriano—not with his knees.

      1. notcubbiewubbie

        excuses excuses just think only two and half more years of soriano apologists. thanks jim hendry i have really enjoyed the soriano era!!!!!!!!!!!

        1. Leroy K.

          not even. He’s gone by April of next year.

  24. die hard

    A flea on an elephant’s butt is the significance of Soriano’s gaffe given where Cubs are in standings….A more significant issue is Cubs dont have a major league 3B….fuggatabout the dinger…Cubs hurtin there…could be another several generations before the next Santo shows up….Did Cubs get Stewart for Colvin?….if so, figures