3/15 D-Backs 12, Cubs 2; Rockies 7, Cubs 5
What went right:
Michael Brenly hit his first spring homer with proud dad, Bob Brenly, watching. Carlos Marmol didn’t have a 1-2-3 inning but it was much improved. Junior Lake hit his first spring homer in the Cubs’ split squad game against the Rockies. Marlon Byrd, Starlin Castro and Geovany Soto each had two hits against the D-Backs; Bryan LaHair was 3-for-5 against the Rockies.
What went wrong:
Cubs pitchers gave up 16 hits and walked six vs. the Diamondbacks. Jeff Beliveau walked two batters with the bases loaded to force in two runs and then served up a grand slam to Paul Goldschmidt in a seven-run seventh.
“I felt different. [Dale Sveum] talked to me [Wednesday] and I feel different. I was myself, I calmed down a little bit. It’s good the manager gives you the opportunity and he lets you know that he thinks about the players.” — Carlos Marmol on a conversation he had with the Cubs manager
Blake DeWitt came out of Thursday’s game against the Rockies after getting hit in the right hand with a pitch. He underwent X-rays. Ian Stewart was scratched from Thursday’s game against the Rockies because of a sore quad. Darwin Barney did not start Thursday’s game against the Diamondbacks because of tightness in his left side. Stewart may be sidelined two to three days, while Barney was day to day.
The Cubs will send Minor League pitcher Aaron Kurcz to the Red Sox to complete their part of the compensation package for Theo Epstein. A 10th round pick in 2010, Kurcz went 5-4 with a 3.28 ERA in 32 games last season with Class A Daytona. He struck out 139 over 109 2/3 innings and walked 45. On Feb. 21, the Cubs sent pitcher Chris Carpenter to the Red Sox, and at that time, the two teams also agreed to exchange Minor League players, to be named later. The Red Sox still owe the Cubs a Minor League player to complete the transaction.
Matt Garza will make his third Cactus League start on Friday when the Cubs play host to the Giants at HoHoKam Park in Mesa. So far this spring, Garza has given up six runs on six hits and two walks over 3 1/3 innings, serving up four of those runs in 1 1/3 innings in his last outing against the Dodgers. In that game, Garza stuck to two pitches and said he expected to add more in his next start. Friday’s game will be broadcast on Cubs.com. Plus, the final four of the bunting tournament will be held after batting practice. It’ll be Paul Maholm vs. Casey Coleman and Welington Castillo vs. David DeJesus.
— Carrie Muskat