The Grind of Spring Training, Emphasis on Practice, Maddon on Bullpen Carts, and Other Bullets

Social Navigation

The Grind of Spring Training, Emphasis on Practice, Maddon on Bullpen Carts, and Other Bullets

Chicago Cubs News

I got nothing for this space today. Mind is blank. I guess I’m just very CUBS focused right now …

  • Jose Quintana did a perfect job summing up why Spring Training results for veterans – especially pitchers – tell you so very little about how a guy will perform in the regular season. Watching him last night, I thought he was missing his spots just a bit, and didn’t have his best stuff. The problem with eyeballing a guy like Quintana in Spring Training? You don’t know what he’s working on ( “Spring games, I want to work on my stuff, hit my spots. Fastball command is important to me. I liked what I did tonight. I practiced going up and in and I hit that spot tonight. I just have to keep going, keep working.” He was practicing something. Who knows when he was missing his spots, and when he was practicing something? If he’s healthy – like Jon Lester, Kyle Hendricks, and Yu Darvish – he’ll be fine.
  • Relatedly, Albert Almora tried to play through his bloody nose the other day when Jason Heyward gave him the best possible advice ( “Dude, it’s Spring Training. Go take care of it.”
  • The Cubs’ biggest challenge with respect to Kyle Schwarber this spring? Making sure he doesn’t work *too* hard and grind himself into the ground ( He’s apparently been going all out to improve in the outfield, even stepping into Joe Maddon’s office yesterday to get an evaluation on how his defense has been coming along. (Maddon’s response was essentially that he didn’t have enough visual data to say, because Schwarber hasn’t been challenged yet. Focusing on that first step in the outfield is what Maddon wants to see.)
(Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
  • This is so very extremely the right take on bullpen carts:

  • The Cubs’ cart should be covered in ivy. Lots of ivy. Ridiculous amounts of ivy. So much ivy that you wonder how anyone can see or get in and out of the thing. So much ivy that it ensnares unsuspecting bystanders who are too close as the cart drives by, leading to hilarious what-have-you. So much ivy that Kerry Wood could pull an unseen Andre Dawson right out of it after it arrives on the mound.
  • Heh. I remember this:

  • I made a joke about the Cubs having a Kylo Hendricks bobblehead on ‘Star Wars’ Night, and Ben made a real picture happen:


Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.