Results tagged ‘ Cubs ’
For those of you keeping tabs on Kris Bryant’s whereabouts, the third baseman and top Cubs prospect was batting third for the Triple-A Iowa Cubs Thursday in the first game of a doubleheader in New Orleans. What may be even more interesting about Iowa’s lineup is that Addison Russell was playing second base. Javier Baez has yet to rejoin the team following the passing of his sister.
As most Bryant watchers know, by delaying his promotion 12 days into the season, the Cubs gain an additional year of service time. The 12-day countdown ends Friday. When will Bryant be with the Cubs?
“I have not had a date given to me by anybody, Jed [Hoyer, general manager] or Theo,” manager Joe Maddon said Wednesday.
Here’s the lineup for Iowa’s first game Thursday:
Adron Chambers CF
Addison Russell 2B
Kris Bryant 3B
Chris Valaika SS
Mike Baxter 1B
Rubi Silva RF
Rafael Lopez C
Kevin Brown LF
Eric Jokisch P
— Carrie Muskat
Cubs reliever Neil Ramirez, forced to leave Wednesday’s game after throwing three pitches because of right shoulder discomfort, underwent an MRI exam on Thursday. The Cubs expected to have test results Friday. The Cubs are currently carrying 13 pitchers with the call-up of lefty Zac Rosscup on Tuesday. They have an off day Thursday to decide what to do with the roster.
Ramirez started the ninth inning against the Reds, and threw three pitches to Joey Votto, all balls. His last pitch bounced on the plate.
“It was like he was trying to get it there,” catcher Miguel Montero said. “Something wasn’t right.”
The Cubs already have reliever Justin Grimm (right forearm inflammation) on the DL.
— Carrie Muskat
Travis Wood threw seven shutout innings and Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run homer in the first, his first of the season, to lead the Cubs to a 5-0 victory Wednesday night over the Reds and clinch the series. Wood picked up his first win at Wrigley since May 18 when he beat the Brewers. Joe Maddon gave Wood and shortstop Starlin Castro the stars of the game. Castro turned a key double play in the eighth, and also had two hits and drew a walk. The Cubs have now homered in five straight games for the first time since an 11-game stretch, Aug. 16-27, last year.
* Neil Ramirez had to leave Wednesday’s game after throwing three pitches in the ninth. Maddon said the right-hander has “right shoulder discomfort” and will be re-evaluated on Thursday.
“The 90 mile an hour fastball was well below his thing, so something was obviously not well with him,” Maddon said, adding the news was “not real positive.”
The Cubs are currently carrying 13 pitchers.
* After an off day Thursday, the Cubs play host to the Padres at Wrigley Field. the pitching match ups will be:
Friday: Jason Hammel vs. James Shields
Saturday: Kyle Hendricks vs. Tyson Ross
Sunday: Jon Lester vs. Andrew Cashner
— Carrie Muskat
Chris Valaika and Jonathan Mota each had two hits, and Mota and Kevin Brown each drove in a run in Iowa’s 3-2 loss Wednesday to New Orleans. Kris Bryant was 0-for-3, drawing a walk, and scored a run. He’s batting .333 so far. Donn Roach started and threw six scoreless innings, giving up one hit. Drake Britton took the loss.
* In other Cubs Minor League news, left-handed pitcher Rob Zastryzny was placed on Double-A Tennessee’s disabled list, retroactive to April 13, and lefty Jeffry Antigua was transferred from Triple-A Iowa to Tennessee.
The Cubs will celebrate Jackie Robinson day tonight at Wrigley Field. All players, coaches and both managers will wear No. 42 in his honor. Robinson’s legacy is memorialized each year on April 15 to recognize the anniversary of the Hall of Famer breaking baseball’s color barrier. Each base used at Wrigley Field will feature a commemorative Jackie Robinson Day base jewel. These game-used bases and No. 42 jerseys will be available through Cubs Authentics to benefit Cubs Charities.
* Chris Coghlan admits he was a little surprised when Cubs manager Joe Maddon approached him in batting practice Monday to ask if he could play third base. Coghlan played the position in college but had not been there in a Major League game since 2013 when he played eight games there with the Marlins.
“I guess maybe a little bit [surprised], just because we have so many infielders,” Coghlan said Tuesday.
However, the Cubs were short-handed, and on Tuesday, infielder Tommy La Stella was placed on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to April 9 with a right rib cage strain. Mike Olt has been dealing with a bruised right wrist since Saturday.
“I guess I was the last guy able to do it,” said Coghlan, who subbed at third in the eighth inning Monday. “I was like, ‘Yeah, man, I don’t have a problem doing it.'”
Coghlan was prepared. He has his own infielder’s glove.
“If you have good instincts, you can do a good job over there,” he said.
* Maddon does not believe Jon Lester’s ability to throw to first base will become an issue.
“Only if you permit it,” Maddon said. “There are things we can control, there’s things we can do, and that’s what I want us to focus on.”
Lester did throw to first Monday for the first time since April 2013, and was successful on his first throw, then overthrew first baseman Anthony Rizzo for an error on the next attempt. Maddon says he has some ideas on how to make it work.
“Would throwing to first base help control the running game? Of course,” Theo Epstein said Tuesday. “[Lester will] face things head on and find a way to control the running game.”
* On Wednesday, the Cubs will join MLB by hosting Jackie Robinson Day at Wrigley Field. Uniformed players and personnel will wear Robinson’s retired No. 42 that day. Each base used at Wrigley will feature a commemorative Jackie Robinson Day base jewel. The game-used bases and No. 42 jerseys will be available through Cubs Authentics to benefit Cubs Charities.
The Cubs will present the ninth annual Jackie Robinson Most Valuable Diverse Business Partner Award, which recognizes diverse business partners who exhibit and continue Robinson’s legacy. Finally, several Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholars will be recognized on the field, and these students will have the honor of leading the seventh inning stretch.
* Maddon is happy with the information and scouting reports he’s getting from the Cubs baseball operations department. Said Maddon: “Our geeks are good.” … So far, having Miguel Montero, David Ross and Welington Castillo on the roster has worked. Maddon called them the “three-headed catcher.”
— Carrie Muskat
The Cubs felt the bullpen needed more help than third base, and recalled lefty Zac Rosscup from Triple-A Iowa Tuesday and placed infielder Tommy La Stella on the disabled list. La Stella is sidelined with right rib cage inflammation. Third baseman Mike Olt is limited because of a sore right wrist, injured when he was hit by a pitch on Saturday in Colorado, but was available to pinch-hit and play third if needed.
“You get to the point where toughness doesn’t matter and you have to start thinking about the team,” Olt said Tuesday. “It wasn’t ready to go [Monday] and wasn’t in a good spot where I felt I could get out there and really help the team. I had to put my toughness and competitiveness aside.”
Cubs fans would like to see third baseman Kris Bryant promoted to fill the void at third, but Theo Epstein said he didn’t want to speculate as to whether they’d add the team’s top prospect.
“It depends on what’s happening with the roster, what’s happening with his development,” Epstein said Tuesday. “We don’t know yet. Every day, check in with the trainers, the manager, development guys and see where we’re at.
“Right now we’re thinking about today’s game and that an extra reliever would really come in handy,” Epstein said.
Cubs relievers have totaled 21 2/3 innings in six games, and manager Joe Maddon wanted to be able to give some guys a breather.
“We do need some help in the bullpen,” Maddon said. “They’ve been very active the last few days.”
— Carrie Muskat
Jorge Soler, who hit two homers and drove in four runs Monday, now has 26 RBIs in his first 30 career games. According to STATS Inc. and historian Ed Hartig, that’s the most for any Cub in his first 30 career games in 60 years since Bob Speake collected 26 RBIs in his first 30 career games in 1955. Since RBI became an official statistic in 1920, just one other Cub has reached at least 26 RBIs in his first 30 career games, and that’s Mandy Brooks, who drove in 34 runs in 1925.
According to the Cubs pre-game notes, the previous NL player to collect at least 26 RBIs in his first 30 career games was J.D. Martinez, who had 29 RBIs in his first 30 games for the 2011 Astros.
Soler joins Brooks in 1925 as the only two Cubs since at least 1914 to record two multi-homer efforts in their first 30 career games as well.
— Carrie Muskat
Jorge Soler hit a pair of two-run homers, including a game-tying shot in the eighth, and Arismendy Alcantara smacked a walk-off RBI single with one out in the 10th to lift the Cubs to a 7-6 victory Monday night over the Reds at Wrigley Field. Soler hit a two-run homer in the first and the game-tying shot in the eighth. Chris Coghlan had three hits, including a solo homer. He also played third base for the first time since 2013 because the Cubs were short-handed.
Soler set a career high with four RBIs. It was his second career multi-homer game and first at Wrigley Field.
Jon Lester did not get a decision, giving up six runs on 10 hits over six innings. The Cubs bullpen has been solid, combining for a 1.59 ERA over the first six games. For Alcantara, it was his first hit of the season.
“The big thing for me is the way we played,” manager Joe Maddon said. “Of course, you want to get off to a good start, of course. If you’re playing the game properly and well, and the unity and camaraderie is starting to exist, and of course the bullpen — those guys have been really wildly good.”
— Carrie Muskat
Cubs infielder Tommy La Stella, sidelined with a strained right side, was to try and swing on Monday to see if he can pinch-hit. If not, the Cubs might need to make a roster move, and any time someone says that around the team, Kris Bryant’s name comes up.
Bryant, who smacked nine home runs and batted .425 in 14 Cactus League games in Spring Training, was 5-for-16 with two home runs and one double in four games at Triple-A Iowa, which opened a four-game series in New Orleans Monday. Could Bryant be up sooner rather than later?
“Maybe. We’ll see,” Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said Monday. “We’ll weigh all the factors. I said during Spring Training that his performance last year and even during Spring Training showed that he’s really close and that we’re probably more likely to get him sooner rather than later.
“[Iowa] just started,” Epstein said. “We’re trying to get [Bryant] into a good rhythm down there. We’ll see. His development is an important factor and the needs of the big league team as well.”
La Stella has not played since April 8, and was not available all weekend against the Rockies. Manager Joe Maddon said they would see how La Stella responded to treatment Monday, and then make a decision.
“We’ll talk about that post game today,” Maddon said. “That’s going to be about him and the [athletic] trainers and relying on their judgement and making their best call.”
— Carrie Muskat