The Cubs lost under the lights tonight 7-3 to the Diamondbacks, but I’m sure folks there had a lovely time nevertheless. Spring baseball is just swell. And, hey, the winning pitcher? Old friend and cult hero Brian Matusz.
- Kyle Hendricks gave up a couple runs, which will prevent him from heading into the regular season with the unbearable weight of a fake scoreless streak on his back. Whew. (I joke, but even as Hendricks said after the game, it’s a good thing to get in trouble in spring without all of your pitches or locations working, because you have to practice dealing with it.)
- The Cubs got a couple dingers from Ben Zobrist and Addison Russell, which gave the team the lead in the middle innings, though it did not last. That was just about it as far as offense went for the Cubs, who got their other run on a Jon Jay triple followed by a Kris Bryant single.
- Miguel Montero threw out a runner attempting to steal, which is good to see.
- Wade Davis, Pedro Strop, and Carl Edwards Jr. pitched in this one, with it being Edwards’ night to give up runs. AAA Iowa rotation hopeful Seth Frankoff pitched the final two innings, giving up three earned runs on five hits and a walk.
- Meanwhile, Hector Rondon pitched tonight for Venezuela in their game against the United States, and his appearance was extremely exciting … for the wrong reasons. Well, for Venezuela, anyway. Rondon gave up five hits, including two homers, didn’t finish his inning of work, and coughed up the lead in the 8th inning. Sure, he was, by definition, facing a loaded lineup, but it was about as bad as the outing could have gone. Meaningful? Meaningless? We’ll discuss a bit tomorrow morning, but it reminded me a lot of Rondon’s spring last year: plenty of velocity, poor location, team tees off.
- The big blow:
— MLB (@MLB) March 16, 2017
- While the Cubs were springing in Arizona, former Cub David Ross was in the clubhouse back in Chicago doing this:
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) March 16, 2017
- I spent my morning at the back fields watching an intrasquad game started by Casey Kelly and this guy:
Alec Mills pic.twitter.com/gMtn17Cyx5
— John Arguello (@CubsDen) March 16, 2017
- Mills, in particular, was really good. Granted, he was facing A-ball players who are just getting going, but they – God bless them – looked utterly helpless. If there was a single good swing on him, I didn’t see it. Kelly was a little less dominant, with some loud contact here and there.
- This was not loud, but it was cool to see notable young prospect Isaac Paredes knock a double:
Paredes gets Kelly this time on a bouncer down the line. pic.twitter.com/kpJkCbgWqT
— Brett Taylor (@BleacherNation) March 15, 2017
- I will add, about Jonathan Sierra, age 18, that he looks like a MAN:
Really liked the way Jonathan Sierra was attacking the baseball today, made hard contact twice to his pull side. pic.twitter.com/LiqzCFbDfz
— John Arguello (@CubsDen) March 15, 2017
- Physically, at least, you could see why Sierra got the Cubs’ biggest bonus in their 2015-16 IFA blowout.
- He’s sticking with baseball:
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) March 15, 2017