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cactusToday’s was the kind of game that Spring Training was made for, an almost completely perfect ass-whoopin’ by the Rockies. Sans Tulo and Cargo, the Rockies put up a 13 spot on the Cubs, who were themselves goose-egged. That the Cubs’ lineup featured mostly regulars should be of no concern because, like, Spring Training. Well, let me re-phrase: while there are reasons to be concerned about the Cubs’ lineup, this singular game doesn’t really affect them. 

Similarly, the huge run total by the Rockies doesn’t really worry me either.

  • Travis Wood started and gave up five of those 13 runs. Four of them came in his third inning of work after recording two outs, at which point Junior Lake lost a ball in the sun in center field, and the wheels came off. Obviously Wood is still responsible for keeping things in check, but that’s a bit flukey to entirely pin on him.
  • Six of the remaining runs were scored on Hector Rondon, who was interestingly being tasked with going multiple innings in this one. Is he being looked at as a long-man? He was a starter throughout his entire minor league career, but that was two serious elbow injuries ago. I doubt the Cubs are considering converting him back to starting at this point, but it’ll be interesting to see how he’s used going forward. Given the multiple inning thing, and the Spring Training thing, I don’t know that today’s struggles will knock Rondon back in the bullpen competition. He’s not guaranteed a spot, given the superlative depth right now, but he’s one of the favorites for a middle relief gig.
  • The final two runs came off of Chang-Yong Lim, who is trying to win a bullpen spot. He walked a guy and gave up a homer to Ryan Wheeler before striking out a couple. Lim has the stuff to be a big league reliever, but, once again, depth. His contract situation is very unique (so much so that I read reports out of Korea that his agent was still working out the finer points with the Cubs as recently as a couple months ago – he was signed over a year ago), but I believe the Cubs have minor league control over him. Which is to say, I believe the Cubs can send him to AAA Iowa. If so, they probably will.
  • The best pitching performance of the day came from Dominican Winter League Pitcher of the Year Carlos Pimentel, who threw two scoreless frames, striking out two and walking one. At this point, Pimentel is likely battling for a spot in the AAA rotation.
  • On the offensive side, Darwin Barney had a single and a walk, which made him the star of the game. Seriously.
  • Albert Almora singled in a late-game at bat, and Brett Jackson walked. Given the other performances, these are things worth noting. Seriously.
  • Jon

    [img]http://www.welovetheiraqiinformationminister.com/images/07-minister.jpg[/img]

    • DarthHater

      “We are not afraid of the Rockies. Allah has condemned them. They are stupid. They are stupid” (dramatic pause) “and they are condemned.”

  • fromthemitten

    Lets hope BJax gets some starts and get things going. Him being a servicable CF this year would be a huge bonus. I have a pipe dream of a surprisingly prodctive Lake/Jackson/Vitters/Sweeney/Kalish OF rotation (assuming Schierholtz is trader)

    • ssckelley

      I think time is running out on BJax, the 40 man spots are becoming more and more valuable. The walks are nice but he has to prove he can put the bat on the ball on a consistent basis.

      • Funn Dave

        Hence the need to get him some starts :P

      • Mike

        Hard to let him get in any rhythm when we have sweet journeyman options eating up at bats like Roberts, Valaika, McDonald, etc. I’d rather see more of Vitters than BJax, but my point still applies. I’m really surprised Vitters isn’t getting any looks in the OF.

        • ssckelley

          I agree with you on that. I wish they would not have brought in so many non roster guys.

  • willis

    The cubs are going to be so very bad this year. Plug in Castro into that lineup and there’s what you’re going to see mostly at least early on.

    I know you can’t get real riled up by Spring Training, but a poor effort today. One thing positive I took from it though, the performance by Pimental.

  • David

    Anyone have a 2015 MLB mock draft? Who shall we be targeting with another top 3 pick?

  • Funn Dave

    I’m a fan of Rondon as a long reliever, if he can be consistent.

    • willis

      None of he, Parker or Lim are doing anything to try and grab that last bullpen spot. All have been putrid to this point. Sad thing is Vizcaino is better than all of the, but you have to gently work him back in at this point.

      • Jason P

        Parker shouldn’t have to do anything too earn a spot. His performance last year should make him a lock.

        • willis

          I think I agree with this. I was way bullish on it a month ago but he’s looked meh so far in ST. I think it was a lock, but now he needs to finish strong to get that spot now. I thought he was very good last year.

          • Jason P

            I guess its because I put so little stock into anything that happens during the spring, but I just don’t see why when it comes up that the Cubs have more effective bullpen options than they do spots, his name always comes up as a guy that could be pushed out.

            Why not Russell? Or Villanueva? Or McDonald or Rondon? Actually, you mentioned Rondon, but I’d easily rather lose those 4 before Parker.

            • willis

              Options. He’s got them, Cabrera doesn’t and Rondon kinda doesn’t. I think if it’s super crunch time, they’ll play that game. Before the Spring started, I wouldn’t have, but the way things have gone it may make that more attractive. Not that I think it’s the right move. I like Parker. A lot.

  • JL82

    Off the subject, but Brett what happened to Bear Nation?

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      On hiatus. There’s a post over there about it.

      • JacqueJones

        Too bad. Admittedly I didn’t read it since the bears were knocked out, but with the free agent signings today, I was looking forward to reading a good blog post about it.

        • ssckelley

          Yes the past couple of days would have been fun for a blogger. Free agent signings were blowing up last night on my NFL mobile feed, pretty much 1 after another.

  • JakeMac

    According to reports, Ervin Santana to the Braves on a one-year deal around $14 million. Takes them out of the running for Shark. Good news is it leaves Baltimore and Toronto in it still.

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  • brainiac

    13 is jed’s lucky number

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