Results tagged ‘ Cubs ’

Update on #Cubs Olt, La Stella

Cubs third baseman Mike Olt, hit on the right wrist by a pitch Saturday night, was able to pinch-hit Sunday while infielder Tommy La Stella remained sidelined with a strained right side.

Olt was hit by an Adam Ottavino pitch in the ninth inning, and was surprised his wrist was not swollen Sunday. He did pinch-hit in the ninth, and struck out, but stayed in the game at third base. The Cubs were short-handed because La Stella has been sidelined all weekend with the sore side, which he felt prior to Friday’s game.

“I’m feeling better every day,” said La Stella, who has not swung a bat for three days. “It’s one of those things where you don’t feel the need to rush it.”

La Stella will be re-evaluated on Monday.

Pitcher Travis Wood was listed on the Cubs lineup sheet as a right-handed hitter off the bench, and did get an at-bat on Sunday. Catcher Welington Castillo has been working out at third base in case the Cubs need a backup.

— Carrie Muskat

Final #Cubs 6, Rockies 5

Pinch-hitter Welington Castillo hit a RBI single and scored on Dexter Fowler’s two-run homer in the ninth to lift the Cubs to a 6-5 come from behind victory over the Rockies and take the series. DJ LeMahieu gave the Rockies a lead with a bases-clearing triple in the second inning off Kyle Hendricks, who did not get a decision. Hendricks gave up a career-high five runs on eight hits over 4 1/3 innings. This was Hendricks’ first start of the season. Hendricks did hit a RBI single, Miguel Montero added a RBI double and Anthony Rizzo hit a sacrifice fly. The Rockies made four errors, including two in the Chicago fifth that led to two runs.

Up next: The Cubs return home to face the Reds Monday night at Wrigley Field. Jon Lester gets the start.

#Cubs Montero is very convincing. Just ask Randy Johnson

Miguel Montero convinced both Cubs pitchers Jake Arrieta and Jason Hammel to follow his lead in their first starts and it paid off. There was a time when Montero’s advice wasn’t well received. Just ask Randy Johnson.

Montero recalls a game when they were together on the D-Backs. The first batter doubled off a hanging slider from Johnson. The next batter, Johnson threw a slider again, and this time, the batter hit a line drive off the pitcher’s leg.

“I go out to the mound and he looks at me,” Montero said Sunday. “[He said] ‘We have to quit throwing sliders to that guy.’ I looked up and said, ‘You have to quit hanging it.'”

Then, Montero turned and walked back to the plate, and realized what he had done.

“After I did it, I thought I was going to get sent down,” Montero said. “It didn’t happen — after the game, he came to my locker and said I was right.”

There are times when Montero is wrong. He remembered a game against the Pirates when Andrew McCutchen homered off a young D-Backs pitcher, hitting a change up.

“It hurts me when they give up a run — I take it personally,” Montero said.

Credit former big league catcher Bill Plummer with teaching Montero to focus on catching. Now, the Cubs are benefitting.

Is Montero always right at home, too?

“My wife has to be right,” Montero said. “Happy wife, happy life.”

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs Olt OK to pinch-hit; La Stella sidelined

Cubs third baseman Mikt Olt, hit on the right wrist by a pitch Saturday night, said he was available to pinch-hit Sunday and felt relieved that the swelling had gone done.

“I’ll be able to swing it for sure,” Olt said after taking some swings in the cage.

Olt was surprised that his wrist looked so normal after taking an Adam Ottavino pitch off it in the ninth inning.

“Last night, it was swollen, and I woke up this morning and it wasn’t,” Olt said. “That’s a big step in the right direction.”

He received plenty of treatment from what he called the “big word machines” that the Cubs athletic trainers have. Olt joked that he was ready for anything.

“I could probably steal a bag, whatever they need,” he said.

The Cubs bench was shorthanded because infielder Tommy La Stella is sidelined with a strained side, which he felt prior to Friday’s game. Pitcher Travis Wood was listed on the Cubs lineup sheet as a right-handed hitter off the bench. Catcher Welington Castillo has worked out at third base in case they need a backup.

When Olt had to leave Saturday’s game, there was social media buzz that the Cubs would promote top prospect Kris Bryant.

“Not today,” manager Joe Maddon said.

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs Minor matters: Bryant, Schwarber both homer

Saturday’s games

* Kris Bryant went 3-for-4 and missed hitting for the cycle by a triple in Iowa’s 13-0 win over Memphis. Bryant hit his first home run of the season in the ninth, and finished with three RBIs. Chris Valaika also homered.

* Kyle Schwarber went 2-for-4 with his first home run of the season in Tennessee’s 6-2 loss to Mississippi. Felix Pena gave up three hits over six scoreless innings. The Smokies were charged with five errors.

* Jeimer Candelario had three hits and two RBIs and Victor Caratini drove in the game-winning run in the 10th to lift Myrtle Beach to a 4-3 win over Wilmington. Shawon Dunston had two hits. Paul Blackburn struck out six over five innings.

* South Bend lost 7-5 to Bowling Green in 12 innings. Gleyber Torres had three hits, and Charcer Burks and Jeffrey Baez each had two.

#Cubs prospect Bryant goes 3-for-4, hits 1st HR for Iowa

The Iowa Cubs romped 13-0 over Memphis on Saturday night. Kris Bryant belted his first home run of the season, a two-run shot in the ninth, and missed hitting for the cycle by a triple. He also hit a sacrifice fly in the first, a single in the third, and a double in the fifth. He was 1-for-8 before Saturday’s game.

“The first two nights, I didn’t get much to hit and I was kind of going out of my comfort zone,” Bryant said. “Tonight I told myself to be a little more patient, wait ’em out and I got some more pitches to hit. It was a good night.”

Iowa wraps up its season opening series against Memphis Sunday and then heads to New Orleans for a four-game series, which starts Monday. The I-Cubs play their first home game Friday against Oklahoma City. Will Bryant be there?

“[I’m] not worried about that,” Bryant said. “I’m staying in the moment and for now, this is where I am.”

Final #Cubs 9, Rockies 5

Chris Coghlan, MIke Olt and Starlin Castro each hit solo home runs and Dexter Fowler hit two triples and drove in two runs to spark the Cubs to a 9-5 win over the Rockies on Saturday night. Jason Hammel got the win, giving up three runs on eight hits over six innings. Olt had a scare when he was hit by a pitch on his right wrist in the ninth inning. He had to leave the game. X-rays were negative.

The Cubs had scored three runs in their first three games of the season, and had not homered until they did so Saturday.

“The at-bats have been good. It’s just the ebb and flow of the season, and you want to get more consistent. I think our
judgement at the plate has been good.”

Hammel was a little miffed he was pulled after six innings. He felt strong and wanted another at-bat.

“He was disappointed i was taking him out because he had an opportunity to have his most at-bats in a game ever,” Maddon said. “More than him being taken out of the game, that’s what hurt him, that cut a little bit deeper. I’ll have to be aware of that.”

Back to pitching, Hammel knows how quickly things can change at Coors Field.

“Being here for the few years I was here, you learn, just hang in there, keep it close, keep battling,” he said. “The game can turn so fast. They answered real quick with two in the seventh and make a game of it.”

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs Olt hit by pitch

Cubs third baseman Mike Olt had to leave Saturday’s game after being hit on the right wrist by a pitch in the ninth inning. X-rays did not show a break, and the Cubs will re-evaluate Olt on Sunday.

“We’re going to approach it as if he’s going to be sore [Sunday],” Joe Maddon said. “I don’t know if he can play tomorrow but it does not appear to initially be a break.”

Olt said he was relieved that the wrist wasn’t broken. Olt hit his first home run this season in the third inning in the Cubs’ 9-5 win over the Rockies.

“Yeah, I was relieved,” Olt said of the X-ray results. “It’s a scary spot to get hit. There’s not much meat around it. I’ll be able to sleep tonight.”

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs notes: Fowler, Riz, Denorfia and more

* Cubs outfielder Dexter Fowler appreciated the applause from the fans at Coors Field when he was introduced on Friday for the Rockies home opener. After all, he called the ballpark home for six seasons.

“Everybody was awesome,” Fowler said Saturday. “Everybody was like, ‘We miss you.’ It was kind of an emotional day. It was weird. I’m glad we got the first day over with.”

The hardest part for Fowler was just finding his way. He had never been in the visitor’s clubhouse at Coors Field.

“This is a new chapter in my life, I’m a Cub now and happy to be here,” he said.

He got a nice ovation as he tripled to lead off Saturday’s game.

* When the Rockies employed a defensive shift against Anthony Rizzo with two outs in the seventh on Friday, the Cubs first baseman bunted toward third and was safe on the infield hit.

“That bunt by him was all him, and he picked a perfect time to do it,” manager Joe Maddon said Saturday.

Maddon said he prefers to have players make the adjustments on their own, and Rizzo did just that.

“I’ve had this conversation a lot lately,” Maddon said. “It seems it’s assumed to make adjustments easily on a Major League level and it’s really not, meaning a guy who hasn’t really bunted a lot bfeore, just because [the opposing team is] playing there, that player should be able to bunt it there, or because they’re playng there, he should be able to hit it there. You have no idea how difficult it is.”

Maddon’s strategy?

“I think this game works that way, where you try to prep in advance and then stay out of people’s way and let them be baseball players,” he said. “That’s what I’ve found.”

* Chris Denorfia was in Denver and took batting practice Saturday with the Cubs as well as get a check up from the medical staff. The outfielder, who is on the disabled list with a strained left hamstring, was to begin a rehab assignment with Class A Myrtle Beach on Sunday.

* Maddon has some fond memories of Colorado from his days playing semi-pro baseball in Boulder.

“I’m a Boulder guy back in the day,” Maddon said. “When I was there, I was a power hitter. The ball traveled 5 percent further. I felt I could hit homers when I played in Boulder.”

* Rizzo was hit by a pitch in the first inning Saturday. It’s the fourth time in four games.

— Carrie Muskat

#Cubs Jackson: “I just have to be ready”

Edwin Jackson’s first relief appearance of the season went smoothly and the Cubs right-hander said he was willing to pitch on Saturday. The other relievers have welcomed him.

“It’s cool,” Jackson said Saturday. “I’m like an inbetweener. I still chill with the starters, still chill with the bullpen, still chill with all the pitchers. I’m an inbetweener. I’m a bullpen-starter.”

Jackson began Spring Training vying for a spot in the Cubs rotation but Travis Wood got that job. On Friday, Jackson gave up one hit over two innings against the Rockies in his first relief outing.

“He’s been very professional, and then he gets his chance and does really, really well and that tells you how well he’s processed the whole moment,” manager Joe Maddon said of Jackson. “That speaks well for him and for us.”

Who knows? Jackson could get a spot start and extended innings.

“I just have to be ready for whatever situation arises and just stay in the game,” Jackson said. “That’s all you’re trying to do. Just be ready when the phone rings and your name is called regardless of the situation.”

— Carrie Muskat


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