Spring Training Miscellany: Rodriguez Injury Scare, Lester Solid, Báez Goes Way Deep, More

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Spring Training Miscellany: Rodriguez Injury Scare, Lester Solid, Báez Goes Way Deep, More

Chicago Cubs

The Cubs beat the Mariners today, with an injury scare to Manny Rodriguez being the news of the day. More on that and the game …

  • Jon Lester looked perfectly fine again in Spring start number two, so no worries there as he ramps up for the regular season. No one is expecting him to be an ace this year, but if he’s solid as a 3/4, the Cubs’ rotation will be in really good shape.

  • Javy Báez just obliterated this one, and a fan paid the price with his buttocks to go get it:

https://twitter.com/Cubs/status/1234238666320551936

  • The news from today’s game was electric relief prospect Manny Rodriguez leaving the game with an apparent arm injury. He threw an awkward-looking curveball, shook his arm, flexed his hand, and ultimately left with the trainer after *it appeared* they were investigating his biceps. It was hard to tell the precise issue, but you obviously hope it was just a little twinge of something that goes away in a day, but you will always be pulled in that situation. Rodriguez, 23, has yet to pitch above High-A, so he was a long-shot to make the Opening Day bullpen in any case. But he’s on the 40-man roster now, so you could see him contribute this year if healthy.
  • Ian Miller can FLY:

  • That was certainly not a routine grounder, but the shortstop got on it quickly and made a nice throw … and it wasn’t even close at first base. Miller is definitely making his case to be the 26th man. Would be really nice to have that speed lying in wait on the bench. The question is whether you can justify the bat (which has generally struggled at AAA, and doesn’t figure to be better than “well below average” at the big league level).
  • Jason Heyward is doing his defensive thing this Spring:

  • A general reminder about Albert Almora Jr. results in the spring, where his style has always played well:

  • Nice to see Dillon Maples throwing live BP, since we haven’t seen him in a Spring Training game yet:

  • That means there isn’t a current health issue that hasn’t been disclosed. For whatever reason, he’s just behind the rest of the crew. With Maples, you know the drill: if he can throw strikes – at all – he’s a must-have in the bullpen. The fastball is that good. The slider is that good. But throwing strikes consistently has been a career-long problem for the 27-year-old righty. He does still have a minor league option year left, so he’ll have to establish himself quickly to avoid the shuttle.
  • Lackey gonna Lackey:

  • A couple of 2011 draft picks – first and second round – just hanging out today like old friends:

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The #Cubs' 2011 first rounder and second rounder just hanging out. Old friends.

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Author: Brett Taylor

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