Results tagged ‘ Cubs ’
If you’re going to Tempe on Friday to see the Cubs face the Angels, here’s the lineup:
It’s Opening Day for the Cubs and new manager Rick Renteria. The forecast is for sunshine and temps in the 70s. Jeff Samardzija gets the start against the Diamondbacks at new Cubs Park. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts and Mesa Mayor Scott Smith will throw out ceremonial first pitches. The game will be on WGN-TV, MLB.TV and you can listen on Cubs.com. Here’s the lineup:
Emilio Bonifacio 2B
Luis Valbuena 3B
Starlin Castro SS
Anthony Rizzo 1B
Junior Lake CF
Welington Castillo C
Justin Ruggiano LF
Mike Olt DH
Darnell McDonald RF
Olt is limited to DH duties for now because of some tenderness in his right shoulder. He says it’s normal this time of year.
– Carrie Muskat
* Kyle Hendricks, the Cubs’ Minor League pitcher of the year in 2013, retired all eight batters he faced in Wednesday’s intrasquad game. The right-hander was a combined 13-4 at Double-A Tennessee and Triple-A Iowa combined last season.
“He’s probably put himself on everybody’s radar by the way he went about his business last year,” Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. “It doesn’t hurt anybody to come out and do well.”
Justin Ruggiano, Welington Castillo and Christian Villanueva each hit solo home runs and Junior Lake hit a RBI single in the intrasquad game, which the “home” team won, 5-3. Jorge Soler walked, stole second and scored on Ryan Kalish’s single for the tie-breaking run in the fifth.
* Mike Olt did not play third base on Wednesday but was able to get an at-bat as the designated hitter, and drew a walk in the fifth. He said his right arm is a little tender, and the soreness is not unusual.
“It’s how it is every year,” Olt said. “It hasn’t bothered my swing.”
Acquired from the Rangers last July in the Matt Garza deal, Olt is a candidate for the Cubs’ third base job. He was scheduled to be the designated hitter on Thursday in the Cubs’ Cactus League opener.
* Second baseman Darwin Barney has been working a lot with new hitting coach Bill Mueller in hopes of getting back on track after batting .208 last season.
“We’re happy with where we’re at right now and feeling comfortable,” Barney said. “We feel we have a solid game plan, so we’ll keep continuing to move forward with that. I feel good to go. I feel mechanically sound. I feel like I’m getting results off the bat that I want and hopefully I can carry that forward.”
* Welington Castillo was the designated hitter on Wednesday in the intrasquad game in an effort to give him at-bats. Castillo had arthroscopic knee surgery in mid September and was slowed a little this spring because of his groin. So far, he’s passed all the tests.
“I think everybody is assured he’s completely healed and recovered,” Cubs manager Rick Renteria said. “Like anything, we need to make sure we’re giving him the load of work he needs to get him into the season and that’s what we’re going to try to do.”
Castillo showed his swing is just fine as he led off the fourth inning with a home run off lefty Tsuyoshi Wada.
* Arodys Vizcaino, who has not pitched since 2011 after needing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, threw one inning in the intrasquad game, and walked two and gave up one hit.
“I’m just hoping his health continues to not be an issue,” Renteria said. “His arm is live. [The ball] comes out of there pretty easy. It looks like he’s using his secondary pitches in live [batting practice] the way he wants to. If he wants to bury a pitch he does it, if he wants to go off the corners he can.”
* Jake Arrieta is throwing from flat ground, and continuing to make progress this spring. Arrieta, who was projected for the Cubs starting rotation, was slowed because of tightness in his right shoulder.
* Matt Szczur made a great catch in left field in the intrasquad game Wednesday, but had a bloody right wrist to show for it. He didn’t let up just because it was intrasquad.
“There’s only one way to play,” he said.
– Carrie Muskat
On Wednesday, prior to the Cubs’ intrasquad game, the media was treated to some of the new food at Cubs Park in Mesa. The food, which is being handled by Ovations, offers a lot of variety, from pastrami to chicken nachos. Jay Satenspiel, regional vice president of Ovations, says fans will be able to eat something different at every Cactus League game.
The Cubs’ new Spring Training complex in Mesa, Ariz., will be named the Under Armour Performance Center at Cubs Park. The stadium itself, which hosts its first Cactus League game on Thursday, remains Cubs Park. The Under Armour Performance Center, which opened this year for the first time, features the largest and most advanced strength and conditioning space in the Cactus League. The Cubs built the facility on the former Riverview Golf Course, and it includes a two-story weight and cardiovascular facility, hydrotherapy room, 120-seat theater, video room and cafeteria. The Major League clubhouse can house 68 lockers, and the Minor League facility has 206 lockers.
It was only 20, 25 pitches but it was the first time off a mound since he had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow, and Cubs pitcher Kyuji Fujikawa said he is continuing to make progress. Fujikawa threw off a mound Monday for the first time since having the procedure done last June.
“It’s one step at a time and it’s a long process,” he said Wednesday through interpreter Ryo Shinkawa.
The right-hander, limited to 12 games last season, his first with the Cubs, said he didn’t hesitate during his side session.
“I didn’t have any doubts because I was throwing with pretty good intensity on flat ground,” he said.
“All I can say now is I’m playing light catch today,” he said. “Anything can happen each day. I’m following the medical staff and the [athletic] trainer’s plan and following the schedule.”
The Cubs are hopeful Fujikawa can pitch for the big league team this summer.
– Carrie Muskat
Here are the lineups for Wednesday’s Cubs intrasquad game at new Cubs Park, scheduled to start at 1 p.m. AZ time:
vs. Team 2:
Tuesday would’ve been Ron Santo’s 74th birthday. His latest replacement on WGN Radio, Ron Coomer, was at the Cubs’ Spring Training complex to prep for his first season in the broadcast booth.
Coomer, 47, is replacing analyst and former Cubs player Keith Moreland, and will join play-by-play man Pat Hughes. And Coomer has nothing but respect for Santo, who was doing the Cubs broadcasts when Coomer played for the Cubs in 2001.
“You don’t replace Ronnie,” Coomer said of Santo. “I’m not looking to be the next ‘Pat and Ron’ show. Hopefully, I can just do my job.”
Coomer received a No. 10 honoring Santo after a fantasy camp, and it’s hanging up in his pool room at home. He attended Lockport (Ill.) Township High School, and still has links on the south side of Chicago. Coomer expects his favorite sandwich place, Parisi’s, to deliver to Wrigley Field. He also has some Santo stories to share with listeners. They talked about playing third several times.
“We were headed to Cincinnati, and he came walking to the back to the plane and says, ‘Hey, big boy, what are you doing tonight?’” said Coomer, who knew he’d be talking baseball with Santo that evening.
“He was a legend,” Coomer said of Santo.
– Carrie Muskat
* The Cubs will play a six-inning exhibition game at new Cubs Park on Wednesday, starting at 1 p.m. MT. Kyle Hendricks and Eric Jokisch are scheduled to start. The game is a tune-up for Thursday’s Cactus League opener, when the Cubs play host to the Diamondbacks.
One of the players eager for a game is third baseman Mike Olt, who batted .201 last season combined in the Minor Leagues, first with the Rangers and then the Cubs. So far, Olt, who struggled with vision problems, has passed all the tests in batting practice.
“Everyone’s going to be a little rusty but I feel I’m at a different stage than I was last year, heading into the first scrimmage,” Olt said. “I’m just excited to get back in the box and have that competitive edge. Even with live [batting practice], you don’t have the competitive dge that you would in a game.”
Other pitchers scheduled to throw on Wednesday include Arodys Vizcaino, Neil Ramirez, Tsuyoshi Wada, Brian Schlitter, Chang-Yong Lim, Marcus Hatley and Armando Rivero.
“It’s going to be good for me and for the staff to see the guys put themselves out there between the lines with a little more competitive aspect of the game,” manager Rick Renteria said. “They’ll be able to see where they’re as far as timing and pitchers will see where they’re at with the hitters and game-type situations, which is what we’re building up to do. It’ll be good to see them out there playing.”
* Kyuji Fujikawa threw 20-25 pitches in a side session on Monday, his first time off a mound since undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow last June.
“It went very well,” Renteria said of the pitcher’s session. “He gave me a thumbs up.”
* The new rule adopted Monday by Major League Baseball in regards to plays at the plate will affect baserunners, not just catchers. The Cubs will work on sliding drills on Wednesday.
“We all understand the biggest key is to eliminate the possibility of a baserunner actually going after the catcher who’s not covering the plate, and eliminate injuries that come from that,” Renteria said.
* Hall of Fame pitcher Fergie Jenkins addressed the players on Tuesday in the Cubs’ big league camp as well as the 50-plus taking part in the Minor League mini camp. Jenkins noted that when he was with the Cubs, they had 40 players sharing one field in Spring Training. Now, the Cubs have six fields plus a half field plus the stadium at the new facility.
* In case you missed it, I have a feature on top prospect Dan Vogelbach on Cubs.com and how he lost 30 pounds this offseason. Vogelbach wanted to quiet critics who felt he was too heavy to play first base. He hasn’t lost his powerful hitting stroke. Minor League hitting coach Desi Wilson says Vogelbach still has good bat speed and is better defensively.
“He hasn’t lost anything — he’s gained,” Wilson said of Vogelbach, ranked No. 10 on the Cubs’ top 20 prospects.
– Carrie Muskat
The Cubs announced details for purchasing single game tickets for the 2014 season. Single game tickets go on sale March 7 at 10 a.m. CT at http://www.cubs.com and by phone at 800-THE-CUBS (800-843-2827).
Fans may once again participate in the MasterCard pre-sale, starting March 4 at 10 a.m. CT. Any fan using a MasterCard can purchase single game tickets in advance of the general on-sale date at a 15 percent premium, while fans using other forms of payment may purchase tickets at a 20 percent premium.
The Cubs will no longer host a two-hour on-sale event at Wrigley Field prior to online and phone sales. The Wrigley Field ticket windows will open March 8 at 9 a.m. CT.
In celebration of Wrigley Field’s milestone, the team has introduced a section of MasterCard Century Seats with tickets priced at $19.14 before tax for every game of the season. This 350-seat section is located in the Upper Deck Box level in left field. These tickets must be purchased with a MasterCard and are available at http://www.cubs.com/CenturySeats or 800-THE-CUBS with no service or delivery fees.
Following Opening Week, Cubs fans will be treated to a variety of elements to celebrate 10 decades during 10 unique homestands at Wrigley Field. These festivities include historic bobblehead giveaways on the first Friday of each homestand to honor key individuals or events from the corresponding decade; “Throwback Sunday” games on the first Sunday of each homestand when the Cubs and many visiting teams will wear throwback uniforms; retro toy promotional giveaways to children 13-and-under on those same Sundays; a dedicated “Decades Diner” with rotating food and beverage options; plus commemorative ballpark décor, guests and game entertainment.
While the entire season is dedicated to celebrating 100 years of Wrigley Field, the actual 100th birthday is April 23. On that date, the Cubs will host the Diamondbacks a century after the Chicago Federals opened then-Weeghman Park against the Kansas City Packers. Both teams will wear commemorative uniforms and the first 30,000 fans receive a replica 1914 Chi-Feds jersey. Like any good birthday party, Wrigley Field’s celebration will feature special guests, gifts, cake, entertainment and even a serenade to the tune of “Happy Birthday.”
Here are details for each single game purchasing option:
* MASTERCARD PRE-SALE:
The Cubs will offer the MasterCard Pre-sale starting March 4 at 10 a.m. CT. Fans using a MasterCard can purchase single game tickets in advance of the general on-sale date at a 15 percent premium, while fans using other forms of payment may purchase tickets at a 20 percent premium. MasterCard Pre-sale tickets may be purchased at http://www.cubs.com.
* SINGLE GAME GENERAL ON-SALE:
Via the Internet: Visitors to Cubs.com can purchase tickets beginning at 10 a.m. CT. A virtual waiting room will be used for all Internet orders. The virtual waiting room will begin accepting customers March 7 at 9:30 a.m. CT. At 10 a.m. CT, customers will be selected from the virtual waiting room to begin purchasing tickets. All Internet customers will need a valid Cubs.com account. Customers are recommended to register for an account prior to March 7.
By Telephone: Tickets can be purchased by telephone beginning at 10 a.m. CT on March 7 by dialing 800-THE-CUBS (800-843-2827).
At the Wrigley Field Ticket Office: Tickets will be available for purchase at the Wrigley Field Ticket Windows March 8, beginning at 9 a.m. CT. Due to offseason construction in the main concourse and fans’ increased use of online ticket purchasing, the team will not host a two-hour on-sale event at Wrigley Field prior to online and phone sales.
* MASTERCARD CENTURY SEATS:
In celebration of Wrigley Field’s 100th birthday, the Cubs and MasterCard have partnered to offer a consistently low-priced seating option for every game during the 2014 regular season. Cubs fans can use their MasterCard to buy tickets priced at $19.14 before tax with no service or delivery fees. This 350-seat section is located in the Upper Deck Box level in left field.
MasterCard Century Seats must be purchased with a MasterCard, which serves as the buyer’s day-of-game ticket for admittance along with a photo ID. Guests will receive email confirmation of their purchase, however print-at-home tickets are not available for MasterCard Century Seats. These tickets are non-transferable. MasterCard Century Seats are available at http://www.cubs.com/CenturySeats or 800-THE-CUBS beginning March 8 at 10 a.m. CT.
For updated ticket pricing, visit http://www.cubs.com. For more information, contact the Chicago Cubs Ticket Office at 800-THE-CUBS (800-843-2827).