scott baker twinsAll is well on the family front after a touch over a week with The Little Boy in the fold. We’ve got the nighttime “shift” thing down pretty well, with me covering 8pm to 1am, and The Wife covering 1am to 6am (and maybe a touch longer when she feels like hooking me up with bonus sleep time). The Little Girl is adjusting well, and certainly seems to think The Little Boy is fascinating and awesome.

  • Scott Baker is feeling good after throwing a simulated game, so he’s on pace to throw in a minor league game next week, and then a Cactus League game thereafter. He talks about the mental side of recovering from injury, per CSN: “You definitely have to marry the physical and mental together, because there’s a feeling where you trust it, you trust your ability to give it everything you got. There’s no holding back, you’re finishing all your pitches, you’re trusting that the elbow’s going to hold up, and you can tell yourself that all you want, but until you start letting it go and you don’t have any adverse effects, generally there’s nothing else you can do but fill that intensity and feel good about doing it.” His fastball is already up to 89 mph, which is a great sign. That would be fine this time of year for most pitchers who in-season like to sit in the low-90s, let alone one coming off of Tommy John.
  • Ian Stewart is doing all things baseball at this point, and says he worked out without feeling any tightness or soreness yesterday. He’s guessing he’s just a few more days from returning to game action, which would be an earlier return than we’d been expecting. It’s just a couple days earlier, but with Stewart battling to maintain his roster spot, a couple more games and the associated at-bats can’t hurt.
  • Patrick Mooney on Dale Sveum for the long-term.
  • Javier Baez on the multitudes of pitchers you’ll see as you march toward the big leagues (and then try to stay in the big leagues).
  • Anthony Rizzo’s Team Italy won again yesterday, blasting Team Canada in another upset. They’re now 2-0 heading into today’s game against Team USA (tonight on MLBN at 8pm CT), which lost last night to Mexico. Rizzo got a sizable donation to his charity of Dale Sveum and a number of players and coaches thanks to the wins.
  • Speaking of Team Italy’s wins, if you wanted to see Rizzo’s game-winning hit against Mexico, BN’er Corey found a video:

  • TommyK

    Man,look how small the crowd is at the WBC. Is that thing going to last?

    • Tim

      It was because the game was originally supposed to be played at the diamondbacks spring training stadium but the rain moved them. The Mexico and USA game last night had over 40,000 people in attendance

    • Internet Random

      Don’t know, but don’t forget TV revenues.

    • Diesel

      I don’t care if it goes away or stays. Last time I turned on one of the games from the WBC the announcer took an opportunity to plug yankees-red sox. I hate that crap there are other teams out there.

  • 100 Years of Tears

    Cool Rizzo video… just turn the volume down after the crack of the bat!

  • Dave

    The Phillies released Joe Mather, the Cubs FO can rectify their greatest mistake of the offseason.

  • Die hard

    Beginning to think Stewart is a head case… Hopefully he doesn’t turn to roids to speed the healing

    • gocatsgo2003

      Normally I would ignore anything you say, but you may very well be our resident head case expert.

      • Crazyhorse

        I guess losing a 101 games and this season not looking any better will do that to fans,
        I guess having faith in Stewart a player a proven DL STUD and weak every day player is over the top,

  • Kubphan82

    Did the OF’er lose it in the sun? Oh well, if so, a hit is a hit is a hit…

    • Crazyhorse

      A cheap hit . is a hit . but to call a cheap hit a spectacular hit is the differance

  • Dustin S

    I’ve been doing the Gameday audio thing, but seeing Rizzo in the WBC definitely makes me look forward to another 7-10 days when we start getting video for most of the rest of the Cubs ST games.

  • DB Kyle

    The more Ian Stewart actually bats, the less impressive he is, so maybe coming back early will hurt him :)

  • Jp3

    Stewart is coming back????!! (Yawn) he’ll be hurt in 20 minutes then

  • Troy

    Cubs minor leaguer Yoanner Negrin is starting against the dominican team in the WBC right now. Should be a good test against a stacked Dominican batting order

  • Morken

    When Luis Valbuena is your starting 3B, you know you’re in for a long season.

    • Spriggs

      Very true!

    • Die hard

      Finally somebody else is saying no to the front office koolaid …… This team is looking more and more worse than last years

      • gocatsgo2003

        Isn’t that kind of the point — Break it down to build it back up? There’s no upside to being a middle-of-the-road team in terms of draft picks, international signing pool, etc.

        Would 75 wins instead of 65 really make you that much happier?

        • MichiganGoat

          Precisely a losing season is a losing season the worse thing a team can do is constantly dance around just below .500 baseball. The new CBA really makes signing mediocre FA and losing that draft pick even more reason to build a quality team through the draft and if you going to only win 70 might as well only win 60 and collect more talent this year.

          • Crazyhorse

            The difference in a 60 win and 70 win season is huge. . The biggest concern would be is the team cheating it fans, On paper it might be the best chance to get better prospects and draft positions to get a better chance in develping a core of player to compete. But the word might carries alot of wieght . drafted Might get hurt . Drafted Players might bomb out.

            When the Cubs are in a close game despite thier losing record the game is more intresting. but if the cubs are on the ls on end of a blow out. well its almost better to trun off the TV, radio and or internet,

            Becasue the Cubs lose more games Might have the benefit of selecting better players . Its a poor a poor mission statement,

            • MichiganGoat

              So any losing season is cheating the fans and if they are losing you just turn off the TV or radio? Wow you are quite the fan are you. If two crappy years create a dynasty of competing teams then sign me up. The short sightedness and impatience of some of you “fans” is frustrating and disturbing.

              • Crazyhorse

                The answer is NO to any losing season , . but if your mission statement is to lose games so a team can secure high draft picks then yes you are cheating your fans .

                • MichiganGoat

                  Okay last comment because you struggle to logically follow an arguement:
                  1-the difference between 60 or 70 wins to a fan should be nothing compared to the benefits of selling flipable prospects and securing a top five pick. To get disappointed that a team loses 60 games as compared to 70 games is laughable. YEAH WE ARE ONLY 10 GAMES BELOW .500 VS 20 GAMES YEAH.
                  2-I’m not advocating losing as a mission statement nor have I ever been excited to lose but when losing is the reality then losing big is better than losing by a few games.
                  3-I’m sure all you negative horses will be celebrating when we win and forget that all this losing was the path that created the winners we will see for the upcoming dynasty — that’s reality.

    • Crazyhorse

      Maybe, but atleast he has earned his contract and he seems to play hard. I think we as fans do a disservice to the Cubs if we let the team think that Stewart is the Answer, No doubt give him a chance but cmon people we argue about a guy that will hit 210 and give us 20 homeruns in his prime/ Give the bat to Lake and let the rebuild begin.

  • http://Bleachernation Loyal100more

    Let’s start a ” lake at 3rd” promotion… I’d rather see lake get the at bats and flame out. It would be more of a risk reward experiment than letting Stewart, and the fans believe that we are willing to go into the regular season with a “broken down” 3rd baseman because it’s all we got at the major league level…I’d like to here by promote the ” jr. Lake at 3rd experiment” we could get a big surprise answer, to one of our biggest question marks going into the regular season… Youth movement?

    • Jim

      I have yet to see Lake play 3rd base. Have any of you? If so, how has he looked? I envision as an outfielder and maybe he gets his chance if Soriano is moved. But if he can play average to decent D, then I am all for giving him a shot. Of course this is equal to kicking Vitters to the curb. Are we ready to do that?

  • Crazyhorse

    Let the rebuild begin at third base ! ! !