I’ll say right up front that I sure was wrong about the Cubs’ regulars getting out of this one quickly. Heck, as of a week ago, I assumed they wouldn’t appear in this game at all – an exhibition game the day before the season starts. But, in reality, several of the Cubs’ regulars were in there for three plate appearances.
In retrospect, I guess that makes sense, especially with yesterday’s off day. They can stay a little more fresh and, admittedly, the increased injury risk to positional guys by staying in a little longer is very small.
The Angels, for what it’s worth, took the opposite tack, sitting most of their regulars. We’ll see whose strategy was better tomorrow, which will definitively answer the question, even in a single-game sample. (Sarcasm font.)
In the end, the Cubs’ minor leaguers gave it up late against the Angels’ minor leaguers 6-4 (Box Score), but that’s OK. Their real season starts soon enough, too.
- Kyle Hendricks went five innings (66 pitches), and got in his expected volume of work. He allowed two runs (one earned) on five hits and no walks, and he struck out seven.
- Miguel Mejia (minor league signing) got the next inning, and looked really interesting, as he has in his appearances this Spring. He took a weird route to the Cubs, but maybe he’s got something. C.J. Riefenhauser also looked good in his inning of work.
- Offensively, the Cubs got dingers from Addison Russell, Anthony Rizzo, and Kris Bryant. Rizzo was later hit by a pitch and left the game, but it wasn’t a hard pitch and he was due to exit anyway. I don’t think there’s any reason for concern.
- Albert Almora made another awesome catch (this time in right field) because it’s what he does.
- OK. That’s is. Fake baseball season over. REAL THING TOMORROW NIGHT.