The Cubs required no rain delay to beat the Indians 11-6, and continue their all-out assault on the Cactus League. At 9-2-2, the Cubs are just ahead of the Brewers … um, Marlins, and Padres. Oh. It’s almost like Spring Training results don’t tell you much …
More from the game and the day at Spring camp …
- Jose Quintana didn’t have perfect command in this one, seeming to juuuuust miss his spots. But the strike zone was also pretty inconsistent and small. So, shrug. He biffed on a comebacker, which looked pretty ugly. He’ll take some extra pitcher fielding practice for that one.
- Dillon Maples faced three batters, and struck out three batters swinging. When he’s on, he’s just so nasty.
- But he might not have been the reliever that jumped out at me the most. Alberto Baldonado, a former Mets farmhand the Cubs signed this offseason, was throwing at least mid-90s with a fastball that seemed to get on the hitters quickly. He’s a lefty, whose build and delivery are extremely evocative of Aroldis Chapman. No, the velocity and extension are not THAT good, but if you’re judging based on how the hitters were seeing him, he was throwing extremely well in the 9th. He only just turned 25, for what it’s worth.
- Also: Jen-Ho Tseng’s changeup is nasty.
- Albert Almora absolutely hammered a homer in the game, and this is very true:
I’m not sure people think of @albertalmora as a guy with a ton of pop. But I’m always shocked at his batting practice sessions. He just crushes the ball. As in, he can keep pace with Schwarber, Bryant and Rizzo. #Cubs https://t.co/rqQReqLs33
— Gary Cohen (@GaryCohenVL) March 8, 2018
- The rub, as noted in the Almora homer post, is that his style at the plate has not been conducive to translating that power to in-game power. But it could be coming based on what he’s showed in the big leagues the last two years and the raw power ability that’s in there.
- Unfortunately, reliever Shae Simmons left with the trainer after walking a couple batters:
#Cubs Simmons left the game with tightness in his right shoulder. He'll be re-evaluated on Thursday
— Carrie Muskat (@CarrieMuskat) March 8, 2018
- Simmons is a big-league-caliber reliever whose career has been sent sideways by injuries, including a serious shoulder injury. So that’s not great news to see there for a guy who was competing for the final bullpen spot.
- Pitching prospect David Garner gave up a grand slam after failing to complete an easy double play that would have ended the inning. Well, let me clarify: completing the double play would have been easy, since all he had to do was toss the ball to second base. Thing is, he’d just caught a rocket liner back at him, so I can understand if the number of outs in the inning temporarily got knocked out of his mind:
- Beer Man was getting after it last night:
- Also, this guy:
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) March 8, 2018
- Oh, Clark and Ben Zobrist, getting into shenanigans:
- Energy + Enthusiasm = sweeping a doubleheader:
— Chicago Cubs (@Cubs) March 7, 2018