Results tagged ‘ Blake Lalli ’

8/27 Minor League report

Chris Rusin struck out seven and gave up three runs over seven innings but took the loss in Iowa’s 4-3 loss to Oklahoma City on Sunday in the last home game of the season. James Adduci had two hits, and Blake Lalli was 2-for-4 with a double and two runs scored. It was Rusin’s 11th quality start. The Iowa Cubs travel to Nashville Monday.

Jae-Hoon Ha hit a RBI triple in the eighth to help Tennessee beat Mobile, 4-3. Ha was 3-for-4 with a double, triple, and one RBIs. Eric Jokisch posted a quality start, giving up three runs over seven innings. Trey McNutt got the win, throwing two innings in relief.

Daytona was off Sunday, and plays host to Clearwater on Monday.

Jeffry Antigua threw seven shutout innings in Peoria’s 10-3 win over Wisconsin. Jacob Rogers hit his first home run, Jorge Soler had two hits and two RBIs, and Dustin Geiger had three hits and three RBIs. Antigua struck out seven and did not walk a batter. He’s 2-2 with a 1.53 ERA.

Jeimer Candelario and Darien Martin each had two hits in Boise’s 5-1 loss to Vancouver. Felix Pena took the loss, giving up four runs over 4 1/3 innings.

Duane Underwood gave up two hits over 2 1/3 scoreless innings in Mesa’s 5-2 win over the Athletics. Ben Carhart and Trevor Gretzky each had three hits. Juan Paniagua picked up the win in relief.

— Carrie Muskat


8/27 Cubs acquire Recker

The Cubs have acquired catcher Anthony Recker from the Athletics in exchange for catcher/infielder Blake Lalli. Recker was batting .265 with nine home runs at Triple-A Sacramento. He had been designated for assignment on Aug. 20. In 18 games over two seasons with the A’s, Recker hit .146. He was an 18th round pick in the 2005 Draft. Recker, who turns 29 on Wednesday, will join Triple-A Iowa’s roster. To make room on the 40-man roster, left-handed pitcher Scott Maine was designated for assignment.

— Carrie Muskat

7/1 Minor League report

Logan Watkins hit a solo homer in the bottom of the eighth to help Tennessee beat Birmingham, 3-2, on Saturday. Michael Burgess also homered for the Smokies. Kevin Rhoderick picked up the win in relief. Jae-Hoon Ha, who will play in the All-Star Futures game, had two hits.

Kyler Burke gave up two runs, one earned, on three hits over four innings in Daytona’s 5-2 loss to Dunedin. John Andreoli had two hits.

Zach Cates gave up four earned runs on six hits over four innings and struck out five in Peoria’s 9-5 loss to Wisconsin. Paul Hoilman hit a double, and now has hit safely in 10 of his last 11 games.

Jose Arias gave up five runs on nine hits over five innings in Boise’s 12-6 win over Spokane. Stephen Bruno had two hits and one RBIs and Jeimer Candelario had three hits and two RBIs.

Justin Berg, making a comeback from Tommy John surgery, threw two scoreless innings in Mesa’s 12-8 win over the Royals. Carlos Penalver had three hits and three RBIs.

— Carrie Muskat


6/15 Minor League report

Blake Lalli hit his fifth home run but it wasn’t enough as Iowa lost, 10-8, to Albuquerque on Thursday. Brooks Raley gave up eight runs on nine hits over 5 1/3 innings. Brett Jackson had three hits and two RBIs, and was batting .267. Anthony Rizzo did not play, still nursing a bruised knee.

Nick Struck gave up four hits over 5 2/3 innings in Tennessee’s 3-2 win over Birmingham. Matt Cerda had three hits, including his second home run. Justin Bour had two hits and two RBIs.

Daytona lost 7-3 to Brevard County in the first game of a doubleheader. Robert Whitenack gave up three runs on four hits over three innings. In the second game, Daytona lost, 2-1. The game was called after eight innings because of unplayable field conditions. P.J. Francescon threw five shutout innings and did not get a decision. Micah Gibbs hit his fourth homer.

Kyler Burke gave up three runs on six hits over 6 1/3 innings in Peoria’s 5-3 loss to Beloit. Javier Baez hit his second homer in as many days, and was batting .310 this year.

— Carrie Muskat

5/26 Cubs lineup & homecoming

Blake Lalli gets the start Saturday night for the Cubs against his former favorite team, the Pirates as the Cubs try to snap a 10-game losing streak. Lalli grew up in nearby Gibsonia, Pa., and went to games at Three Rivers Stadium and PNC Park as a kid. He was a teammate of Pirates second baseman Neal Walker at Pine-Richland High School. Walker was a catcher and Lalli was a pitcher and shortstop. He’d play short on days he wasn’t pitching. Walker would catch him.

In 2004, Walker was drafted out of high school in the first round but Lalli wasn’t and couldn’t get a college baseball scholarship. He played for Gardner-Webb in North Carolina, and was not drafted until his junior year.

When he was called up May 18, Walker sent Lalli a text to congratulate him.

“That meant a lot,” Lalli said. “It means a lot from everyone — a lot of people congratulated me. But Neil, we played together in high school, and he was always a great guy. He’s had so much success up here. It meant a lot.”

Paul Maholm gets the start against his former team, the Pirates. He has the most wins at PNC Park of any pitcher.

“He’s a polished pro,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “At the end of the day, we just felt we needed to go in a different direction. But I’m glad he’s in a good place; we’ll do everything we can to get him to a bad place. It’ll be kinda neat for someone who was a Pirate for such a long period to come back on the other side and compete against a lot of his old teammates.”

One thing Hurdle has to do is get an autographed ball from Maholm for his daughter, who is a big fan.

Here’s Saturday’s lineup:

DeJesus RF

Castro SS

Mather CF

LaHair 1B

Soriano LF

Stewart 3B

Barney 2B

Lalli C

Maholm P

— Carrie Muskat

5/22 Cubs lineup

Blake Lalli gets his first Major League start and Bryan LaHair gets a day off Tuesday as the Cubs face the Astros in Game 2 of a three-game series. Lalli has most likely caught Travis Wood at Triple-A Iowa. No roster move yet to open a spot for Wood. LaHair is 1-for-19 in his last six games, and Dale Sveum wanted to give the first baseman a breather. Here’s the lineup:

RF DeJesus

CF Johnson

SS Castro

LF Soriano

3B Mather

1B Baker

2B Barney

C Lalli

P T. Wood

— Carrie Muskat

5/18 A little about Lalli

Blake Lalli, 29, owns a .298 career batting average with 126 doubles, 36 home runs and 274 RBIs in 591 Minor League games since he was signed by the Cubs as a non-drafted free agent, May 22, 2006.  A left-handed batter, Lalli was a non-roster invitee to Major League Spring Training for the second time in 2012 (also in 2010), and in his first career action at the Triple-A level has appeared in 20 games for Iowa, hitting .178 (13-for-73) with two doubles, three home runs and 11 RBI. He has played 15 games behind the plate and appeared at first base in two contests.

— Carrie Muskat

4/30 Extra bases from Des Moines

Notes from a trip to see the Iowa Cubs:

* You’ve heard about Brett Jackson and Anthony Rizzo, but they may not be the best player on the Triple-A Iowa roster. Keep an eye on Adrian Cardenas.

“I think he’s the best hitter on our team, in my opinion,” Rizzo said of Cardenas, whom the Cubs claimed off waivers from the Athletics in February.

The infielder appreciated the compliment from his Iowa teammate.

“It might have a lot to do with the fact that I don’t chase that many pitches,” Cardenas said. “I’m not for making contact and putting the barrel on the ball most of the time. I’ve taken it to another level on timing and when to be aggressive and when to take it back.”

He gives credit to working with Cubs hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo and Iowa hitting coach Dave Keller.

“I feel I’m becoming an all around real good hitter,” Cardenas said.

Through Saturday, he was batting .324. He’s focused on baseball as well as his studies. Cardenas, 24, had a 10-page final due Monday to complete his African-American literature class at New York University. He’s not just trying to win a job on the Cubs roster; he’s working on his degree. This summer, Cardenas will be playing for the I-Cubs and working on a report for his studies, focusing on Cuba and the Cuban revolution. Cardenas is Cuban-American.

“It’s something I’m passionate about and something I’m excited to learn about,” he said.

At the ballpark, he’s all baseball. On Friday, when the Iowa Cubs game against Nashville was postponed by rain, Cardenas was one of many players in the batting cage, getting extra work.

“I’ve never seen so many people have the same goal in mind which is to get better and take their game to the next level,” he said of the Minor League team. “It’s everybody, from top to bottom.”

* Rizzo can only play first base and knows that Bryan LaHair is doing well at that position with the Cubs.

“People always say, ‘LaHair’s doing great, what are you going to do?'” Rizzo said. “Well, LaHair is a great player. I’ve said that to every one of my friends, my parents. He’s a good hitter and I remember seeing him last year here and the numbers he put up. It’s just something I can’t control.

“I’m here,” Rizzo said. “There’s nothing I can do about it. Every day here, when I don’t feel like doing something, I just think of the massive contracts signed by a few other guys in the league and it’s motivation.”

LaHair is able to play the outfield corners, so the Cubs could make room if they felt Rizzo was ready. The two talked about being in the same lineup some day.

“That’d be pretty cool,” Rizzo said. “I’d catch if I had to.”

He’s that eager to get to the big leagues. Blake Lalli, now the No. 1 catcher for Iowa after Welington Castillo was called up, had to pitch one day this season.

“I’d pitch, too,” Rizzo said.

* Brett Jackson has 27 strikeouts in 21 games, which is higher than he’d like.

“I haven’t had the April I’ve wanted,” Jackson said. “You always want to have higher numbers than .250 and 25 strikeouts or whatever. It’s been an adjustment for me. I feel as if I’m adjusting into the player I want to be and I don’t think strikeouts will be a concern in the future.”

Iowa hitting coach Dave Keller isn’t worried about Jackson. This is part of the young outfielder’s development.

“It takes awhile for every hitter, I don’t care who it is, whether it’s Manny [Ramirez] or [Albert] Pujols or [Alex Rodriguez] or [Derek] Jeter,” Keller said. “Ask anybody and they’ll tell you it takes awhile before you understand how to hit with two strikes and there’s no panic that’s involved.”

*  The pitcher to watch at Triple-A Iowa is Chris Rusin. He has a 2.63 ERA in five starts, giving up eight earned runs over 27 1/3 innings. He’s struck out 13 and walked six.

* Junior Lake has not joined one of the Cubs’ Minor League teams because he’s been rehabbing at the extended Spring Training camp in Mesa, Ariz. Lake has been slowed by back problems. The Cubs hope he’ll be assigned to a team in the next 10 days or so.

* Edgar Gonzalez, who was batting .286 in nine games with the Iowa Cubs, has been released and will reportedly join the Tokyo Giants. He is the brother of Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez.

— Carrie Muskat

3/16 Giants 3, Cubs 2

What went right:

Anthony Rizzo launched his second homer this spring and second off the Giants, connecting off lefty Eric Surkamp leading off the second inning. Blake Lalli also homered in the eighth, hitting a solo shot. Matt Garza was much improved, giving up two runs on three hits and one walk over four innings, his longest outing this spring.

What went wrong:

Catcher Steve Clevenger’s throwing error led to a run in the Giants fourth. An error by Lendy Castillo led to another Giants run. Joe Mather was thrown out at third base trying to advance in the ninth on a sac bunt.


“PlayStation made fun of us the other day with their commercial and the Cubs fan crying but there’s special stuff going on in here, man. You never know. This stuff could be reality pretty soon. I’ve got a pretty good feeling. I can’t wait to get this thing kicked off and get going.” — Matt Garza

Injury report:

Blake DeWitt, Ian Stewart and Darwin Barney are all day to day with minor injuries. X-rays of DeWitt’s right hand were negative. He was hit by a pitch on Thursday. Stewart has tightness in his right quad. Barney has tightness in his left side and said he felt better Friday.


* David DeJesus beat Casey Coleman to win the Cubs bunting tournament on Friday. DeJesus beat Welington Castillo to win the position players bracket, while Coleman topped Paul Maholm to take the pitchers’ bracket.

* The Cubs claimed right-handed pitcher Frankie De La Cruz from the Brewers. In three games with the Brewers this spring, De La Cruz has given up eight runs on seven hits and three walks over 3 1/3 innings. He’s been added to the Cubs 40-man roster. The Brewers had hoped De La Cruz would clear waivers and start at Triple-A Nashville. Cubs pitching coach Chris Bosio knows the right-hander well.

Up next:

The Cubs will play split squad games Saturday and Sunday with half the team in Las Vegas to play the Rangers. On Saturday, Jeff Samardzija will make his second start and third spring appearance in Vegas against Derek Holland, while Paul Maholm will start for the Cubs in Phoenix against the Athletics. On Sunday, Chris Volstad will start in Vegas against the Rangers’ Matt Harrison while Andy Sonnanstine will make his first start Sunday for Chicago against the White Sox in Mesa. That will be the Cubs and White Sox last game before the Interleague games during the regular season. Saturday’s game in Phoenix will be on WGN Radio and Sunday’s game will be broadcast on

— Carrie Muskat

3/12 Cubs 8, Reds 6

What went right:

Alfonso Soriano belted his fourth spring homer, Joe Mather added a go-ahead three-run shot in the seventh, and Blake Lalli hit a solo homer in the eighth to power the Cubs. Paul Maholm made his first spring start and gave up one run on two hits over two innings. Lendy Castillo struck out two of the three batters he faced.

What went wrong:

Carlos Marmol had another tough outing. The Cubs closer walked the first batter he faced, gave up a double, and one out later, hit a batter to load the bases. Donald Lutz hit a two-run single and Marmol walked the next batter before Didi Gregorius’ sac fly, which gave the Reds a 6-4 lead.


“I was happy to get out there. After going through [pitcher fielding practice] and throwing bullpens, you really don’t feel a part of it and then you get out there and it went well. I wish I would’ve gotten ahead of a couple more guys. My main thing was no walks and I was aggressive and went after the guys.” — Paul Maholm

Up next:

Chris Volstad will make his second spring appearance when he starts Tuesday for the Cubs against the Giants in Scottsdale. Volstad, one of the candidates for a spot in the rotation, gave up one hit over three innings in his first outing. The game will be broadcast on

— Carrie Muskat