[The Spring Training Miscellany feature generally goes over what happened in that days’ game(s) with a focus on guys involved in roster/positional battles, young players you might not get to see otherwise, and/or random interesting things. Thus, you won’t always see a ton of the regulars getting mentioned because it doesn’t quite matter as much, but you can always check that stuff out in the box scores.]
Ahhh! Blown leads in both games today! Bad omen! Other jokes!
It would have been nice to see the Cubs sweep their split squad games today, but only in a completely meaningless way. Instead, the Cubs settled for a tie at home against the A’s, and lost late to the Giants in Scottsdale.
At least there were some nice things …
- The biggest highlight of the day was undoubtedly the birthday grand slam by Kyle Schwarber in his first at bat:
- He wound up going 1-3 on the day with that homer, but I’m pretty sure he beat out a grounder that wasn’t challenged, because, well, whatever.
- The game against the Giants featured Schwarber, Kris Bryant, Jorge Soler, Arismendy Alcantara, Addison Russell, Albert Almora, and Billy McKinney, the latter of whom also went deep. The rest of that crew all had at least one hit apiece, except Bryant, but he did walk. Fun prospect game, for sure.
- That includes the pitching side, where Pierce Johnson did this, as part of a scoreless (one walk) two innings:
Cubs pitching prospect Pierce Johnson K's Brandon Belt. Makes him look a little silly in the process. pic.twitter.com/YVVHucsPbb
— Brett Taylor (@BleacherNation) March 5, 2015
- Jacob Turner pitched a couple scoreless frames, but gave up a hit and a couple walks. On the other side of town, Travis Wood, also a fifth starter competitor, went 1-2-3-4-5-6 in his two innings of work with two strikeouts. As well as the debut can go.
- Neil Ramirez followed Wood with a perfect inning of his own, and two strikeouts. He’s good.
- Bullpen competitors Jorge De Leon and Hunter Cervenka combined to let the game against the Giants get away.
- Lefties Joe Ortiz and Drake Britton each pitched a scoreless frame.
- Righty Gonzalez Germen actually got two innings of work in, and didn’t give up a run while walking two and striking out two. The two innings part is the most interesting. We’ll see if that’s reflective of him being stretched out (which would be a surprise), or the Cubs playing around with making him a multi-inning reliever.
- MIKE OLT! had a two-run homer, which accounted for all of the Cubs’ runs against the A’s. Otherwise, there wasn’t much offense in the game for the Cubs. Most of the starters went 0-2, including Javier Baez, but he did not strike out.
- Bijan Rademacher got a late at bat in Mesa, notching a hit before getting picked off.
- Corey Black, who didn’t have his best command, hit Giants outfielder Hunter Pence with a pitch that may have broken his forearm. You’d hate to see that in Spring Training, especially.