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cactusSurprise! The Cubs lost in Surprise today to the Rangers. It was a low-scoring affair, and the Rangers were coming with most of their regulars, so … moral victory?

  • Hisanori Takahashi had a mixed three innings today for the Cubs. On the one hand, he struck out four. On the other hand, he gave up five hits, two walks, and three earned runs. On the other other hand, it was a pretty potent Rangers lineup (full of regulars) he was facing. On the other other other hand, a lot of the damage came off of lefties, so it’s not like he was even neutralizing the guys he was supposed to. On the other other other other hand, it’s just one outing while he stretches out a bit. No biggy.
  • Michael Bowden followed Takahashi with two scoreless innings, allowing just two hits. It’s interesting – the Cubs flirted with the idea of re-converting Bowden into a starter during the offseason, but apparently it isn’t happening. Might he become a long reliever, though? Maybe he’s directly in competition with Takahashi for that role.
  • Jaye Chapman and Trey McNutt each threw a scoreless inning as they sit on the outside of the bullpen competition looking in (it’s just a numbers game). McNutt’s inning took just seven pitches.
  • Rule 5 pick Hector Rondon continues to give the Cubs no reason not to keep him this year – he threw another scoreless frame, and hasn’t given up an earned run yet this Spring.
  • Brian Bogusevic came off the bench and had another double.
  • Junior Lake had a single and a triple while manning third today, but what I’d like to get a better sense about is how he’s handling the regular playing time there defensively.
  • The Cubs went 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position. Insert “they’re in regular season form” joke. The Cubs had just seven hits and two walks on the day.
  • Rcleven

    Just too many K’s.

  • cub2014

    Hey Brett, Junior lake looks like he is hitting big league
    pitchers, how has he looked at 3rd?

    • MightyBear

      Remember its AZ. More fastballs, less breaking balls etc.

  • cub2014

    As for Junior Lake, I know hitting wise it’s early.

  • Bill

    Is Brian Bogusevic the 2013 version of Joe Mather?

    • MightyBear

      Yes Brian Bogusevic is officially 2013 Joe Mather. Get ready for a .200 BA. I hope not but it wouldn’t surprise me.

      • TWC

        Lulz…

        Baseball-Reference has Tuffy Rhodes as #1 on Bogusevic’s Similarity Score index.

      • CubFan Paul

        Bogusevic has actually had some success in the league with just a down 2012 year…same can’t be said for Mather

        • TWC

          Easy Pauly. Don’t just look at the bottom line numbers. His 2011 total was based off only 182 plate appearances. We’re well into “small sample size discrepancy land” here. Over the last three seasons, Bogusevic hasn’t even had a full season of ABs.

          • CubFan Paul

            I’m not calling Bogusevic an everyday player-if platooned properly (like 2011) he IS way better than Mather.

            • TWC

              That may be. My issue is which Bogusevic are you getting? The 164 ABs of 2011 decency? Or the 383 ABs of 2010 & 2012 Joe Mather levels of garbage?

            • Bric

              I’m not going to call Bogusevic anything at all (since I struggle to spell and pronounce it). I’m just going to call him Bill.

              • TWC

                That’s racist.

                • spencer

                  who let u out of the closet?

                  • Bric

                    I’m just kidding. Where’s the ghost of Harry to stand up and say it’s just a name?….

                    • TWC

                      Heh. I meant absolutely nothing by that. Just jabbin’ you in the eye for no good reason. Cheers, pal!

                    • http://bleachernation loyal100more

                      the ghost of harry would say his last name backwards

                  • TWC

                    Yeah, hey, you’re kinda new here, so I’ll forgive you for not knowing when someone is joking.

                    • Spencer

                      I just changed my email address and made my name lowercase to screw with you. duh.

                    • TWC

                      Riiiight.

    • Spencer

      Just yesterday, this tweet from Carrie Muskat: “Sveum calls Brian Bogusevic the “the Joe Mather of camp” and he appears to have lead in winning bench spot”

      What a disaster.

      • DB Kyle

        I was prepared to freak out if one of Bogusevic or Lillibridge was given a spot. I think we’re headed toward both :(

        • CubFan Paul

          Hilarious. According to Sveum the bench is now: Navarro, Hairston, Bogusevic, Lillibridge, and one of Sappelt, Valbuena, & Clevenger.

          • cub2014

            Navarro, Hairston & Valbuena yes, but I would have
            Clevenger and Lake. Clevenger can catch or play 1st
            and emergency 3b. Lake can play 3b-SS-OF. That
            would be a versatile crew. Then Bogusevic hit .203
            with 28 rbi with 355AB that is horrible. Then Lillibridge
            career .213 over 6 years 66 rbi’s with 780 plate
            appearances. Those two are so bad!!!!

  • gratefulled

    SUPER BOGES!!!!!

  • Jp3

    Where can I get my Super Bogus jersey… That maybe the funniest name ever on a cubs uni minus Fuk u do me

  • Mike S

    Texiera is out 8-10 weeks. Hello Soriano!!

    • cubzfan

      I would expect to see Yankee scouts at some games soon, but not to look at Soriano. Ian Stewart would be a better bet. They can move Youkilis to first and are just looking for a stopgap.

      • bails17

        No…Hafner will play 1B….there is no way they will be looking at Stewart. Soriano make much more sense to them now.

  • http://meaninginhistory.blogspot.com/ mark

    So if we’re seeing the real Dave Sappelt–offensively–what does the Cubs OF look like this year?

  • BluBlud

    I really think they should consider letting Lake make this team out of the ST. What do they really have to lose. I know the service clock thing, but can we really play that game with all our prospect. He is better then any of our other options. We are set a catcher, so I say just keep Sappelt, Shierholtz, Lake and Valbuena and let Lake play a little OF and Hairston fill in when needed at first.

    • Hee Seop Chode

      Is that a given if Stewart doesn’t make the squad?

  • http://meaninginhistory.blogspot.com/ mark

    I understand Lake played an out into a single (no error) at 3B today. I don’t think many people really believe that’ll be his position if he makes it as a regular. But I think they’ll keep playing him there as well as in the OF just for depth purposes. There are an awful lot of non-compelling players trying to make this roster, but it’s still hard to see Lake sticking out of ST–wouldn’t be fair to him, probably, and could ruin a good prospect. Mid year …

  • Jeff1969

    Is Vitters hurt or something? Haven’t been seeing his name at all around the 3B mess.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

      Yep. Minor injury. He should be back fairly soon, if I remember right.

  • Patrick G

    You got alot of hands

  • Crazyhorse

    Lake or Stewart ? Lake may surprize, while Stewart will do what is expected if he make the team. Stewart will go on the Dl and blame his injury. Lets give the kid (Lake) a chance, Stewart has gone a couple of years with his chances with two ball clubs and still finds reason to be a limp wrist no show. Seems like Steard is the on the wrong side of thirty as well – wait those are only excuses in signing proven free agents,

    • Jim

      I have been saying for awhile now that Lake might be the best prospect out of all of them. His defense has been what most people point at. I truly believe that he will end of an outfielder and maybe our Left Fielder if Soriano is traded. An outfield of Lake, Almora, and Soler in a year or two could be one of the best.

    • Jimmy James

      Proven? As in uber-spensive?

    • John (the other one)

      that’s broken wrist. and they are really hard to recover from. (see garciaparra, d lee)

      • Crazyhorse

        Unlike D.Lee and and Garciaparra- the Cubs should not invest time with a player that has no Club history except being on the losing end of a bad trade and being on the Disable list for 3 years and counting.

        If stewart can not be ready by opening day- then he should be cut and let the rebuild begin the field.

        • CubFan Paul

          Garza has been on the DL three years running too. A lot of idiots think the Cubs were on the losing end of that deal too.

          If Garza can not be ready by opening day- then he should be cut and let the rebuild begin the field…

  • http://meaninginhistory.blogspot.com/ mark

    If the Cubs are gonna be respectable–big if, if they wanna be–they need to pick up at least one for real OFer. I just can’t see the pack of longshot wannabes they have in camp doing the trick, and any prospects they have are still unproven–including Jackson. I see Castellanos is now a LFer for Detroit. Marmol and Soriano for Castellanos on the theory that Jackson really will be ready in a few months? Is there a for real center fielder available somewhere? I dunno. I think the natives will start getting restless this year if the the movement over the winter turns out to be for naught.

  • 5412

    HI Brett,

    I was at the game today and was impressed by Junior Lake in the field. He turned a nice double play. In addition he dove on a hard hit ball down the line. Even though he could not make the play, he saved a run by keeping it in the infield.

    Cubs made little attempt to win today. They had the tying runner on third and lead run on second and could not bring them in. With two out they pinch hit Solar for DeJesus with a right handed pitcher on the mound.

    Solar struck out. I told my friends when he had two strikes, he will not see another fast ball and that turned out to be accurate.

    I was not impressed with Mr. Baez today…kinda sorta. You could certainly see his bat speed but he did not come close to squaring up on the ball. He was seeing a good diet of breaking balls and a couple of times he looked overmatched to me. He is a good athlete and the problems are likely nothing that 1,000 more at bats won’t help a great deal.

    Clevenger handled hs own at 1B however he sure seemed to run and look like a catcher. His lower body does seems to be a lot bigger than his upper body.

    On a bunt today AJ Pierzinski got forced out at 3B. I mentioned to him in a loud voice that he looked like Michael Barrett running down the line. Some of the old timers that remembered their fist fight got a chuckle out of that.

    Headed to Ho Ho Kam on Saturday.
    regards,
    5412

    • cubchymyst

      Thanks for posting a live account

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