Results tagged ‘ Javier Baez ’
Carlos Gomez hit a leadoff home run and Blake Lalli added a RBI double to back Marco Estrada and lead the Brewers to a 4-3 victory Sunday over the Cubs, who were playing a split squad game. Gomez led off the third with his home run off Drew Carpenter, and Lalli, a former Cub, added his double one out later. Javier Baez drove in all three Cubs runs. He hit a two-run home run in the fifth and drew a bases loaded walk with two outs sixth.
Baez fouled a ball off his left foot before he homered. The Cubs’ athletic trainer came to check on him but Baez said he was OK.
“It still hurts,” Baez said of his foot. “I told [the trainer] I was all right. I don’t like coming out of the game.”
So far, spending Spring Training in the big league camp has been pretty nice for Baez, the Cubs’ 2011 first-round Draft pick.
“You learn things that you don’t realize you’ll learn,” said Baez, who is getting a lot of tutoring on his defensive positioning.
He didn’t get the ball from his first home run. Was it a big deal?
“Not really,” Baez said. “I’m just going to keep trying to hit the ball hard.”
In Tempe, Brad Nelson and Brian Bogusevic each hit home runs in the Cubs’ win over the Angels. Bogusevic was 3-for-3 with two doubles and a home run. Nick Struck, the Cubs’ 2012 Minor League Pitcher of the Year, threw three scoreless innings, giving up two hits and striking out one.
* On Monday, right-hander Alberto Cabrera will make his first Cactus League start when the Cubs play host to the Indians at HoHoKam Stadium. With Matt Garza not expected to be ready for the first month, and Scott Baker sidelined until mid April, the Cubs need to get a good look at some of the other pitchers for the bullpen spots. Cabrera, who appeared in 25 games in relief last season, could be one. Brad Nelson will start at first base as Anthony Rizzo joins Team Italy for the World Baseball Classic. Jorge Soler will be the designated hitter and Steve Clevenger, who could win a job as a utility player, will start at catcher. The game will be broadcast on Cubs.com.
* Rizzo was looking forward to playing for Team Italy in the Classic.
“I’m going to be competing on an international level, which is going to be cool,” Rizzo said. “From what I’ve heard, the Italian team is pretty good. Hopefully we can shock some people and play good baseball.”
The Italian team will practice Monday, then play exhibition games Tuesday and Wednesday before facing Mexico on Thursday at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick. Rizzo talked to Cubs manager Dale Sveum before agreeing to play in the World Baseball Classic.
“Obviously, [Sveum] wants me in camp, and I want to be in camp, we want to build as a team,” Rizzo said. “For the short time I’ll be gone, I don’t think it’ll be much of a distraction at all.”
Sveum wasn’t too worried.
“He’d be playing here — it’s baseball,” Sveum said. “He’d be doing the same thing here that he’ll be doing over there. He’s in good shape and his legs are good and everything is fine. He’d be playing here just as much.”
* Former Cubs pitcher Rick Sutcliffe was back in uniform Sunday at HoHoKam Park, feeling much better after undergoing emergency hernia surgery. Sutcliffe actually stopped by Scottsdale Stadium on Saturday, four days after he had the procedure, to watch the Cubs-Giants game. He had just been released from the hospital. A Cy Young winner in 1984, Sutcliffe will get the stitches removed Wednesday, then go to work in the broadcast booth for the World Baseball Classic.
* Infielder Logan Watkins beat Rizzo in the first sweet 16 match of the Cubs bunting tournament. Three more matches will be played Monday, including video staffer Nate Halm’s showdown against pitcher Travis Wood.
– Carrie Muskat
Jerry Hairston Jr. drove in three runs, including a pair on a double in the second, and Brian Barden hit a two-run single in the fifth inning to lift the Dodgers to an 11-7 win over the Cubs Wednesday.
The Dodgers loaded the bases with two outs in the first and a run scored on a wild pitch by starter Brooks Raley. Chicago then batted around in the first against Aaron Harang. Luis Valbuena doubled to lead off and scored one batter later on Anthony Rizzo’s single. Rizzo was forced at second on Alfonso Soriano’s fielder’s choice, and Nate Schierholtz hit a RBI single to give Chicago a 2-1 lead. One out later, Welington Castillo walked to load the bases and Darwin Barney followed with a two-run single.
The Dodgers loaded the bases again in the second against Raley, who was then pulled. Hairston greeted Trey McNutt with a two-run double and Alfredo Amezaga hit a RBI single to tie the game at 4. Hairston then scored on Hanley Ramirez’s sacrifice fly.
The Dodgers loaded the bases again in the third, taking advantage of a fielding error by Scott Hairston, Jerry’s brother, who muffed Yasiel Puig’s fly ball, and Elian Herrera hit a RBI single, Jerry Hairston added a sacrifice fly, and Amezaga hit a RBI single, his third hit of the game.
A Cubs run scored on a throwing error by third baseman Omar Luna in the third, and another scored on a throwing error by shortstop Dee Gordon in the fourth.
* One of the Cubs’ highlights came in the eighth when top prospect Javier Baez knocked down Gordon with a line drive lead off single.
“I think I’ve seen balls hit as hard, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a ball hit harder,” Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. “That was like balls that [Gary] Sheffield used to hit.”
“You don’t teach the kind of bat speed Baez has,” Sveum said. “That’s special and comes around once in a while.”
Baez, the Cubs’ No. 1 pick in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft, didn’t say anything to Gordon about the rocket.
“It felt pretty good,” Baez said. “If you hit a ball like that all the time, you’re going to be great, you’re going to feel great. You just have to get on base no matter how.”
– Carrie Muskat
On Thursday, Dale Sveum will get his first in-game look at Jorge Soler and Javier Baez. The two top prospects will take part in the Cubs’ intrasquad game at HoHoKam Stadium and bat back to back for the Blue team with Soler in left, Baez at short. The Cubs have 39 Spring Training games this year, and Soler and Baez will get lots of at-bats.
How eager is Sveum to see them?
“I’m very anxious,” Sveum said Wednesday. “Those are the guys you talk about who are on your radar in your Minor League system who have all those God-given tools — the speed, the arm, the power, hopefully, the hitting ability, meaning OPS and those things, although a lot of that stuff comes a little later in their careers. This is pretty special talent and bat speed that those guys have that you want to see in person and at game speed.”
Soler, the Cuban outfielder, turns 21 on Feb. 25; Baez, who was the Cubs’ No. 1 pick in 2011, just turned 20 on Dec. 1.
The intrasquad game was scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. Arizona time at HoHoKam Stadium and was open to the public.
– Carrie Muskat
Highly touted prospect Javier Baez will be in his first Major League Spring Training camp, but the Cubs aren’t reserving a locker for him at Wrigley Field for this season.
“When a young guy’s name pops up as being invited to big league camp, often times people think it means he’s close to the big leagues,” Theo Epstein said Sunday. “In this case, Javy’s not. He’s got significant development still ahead of him. We’re really impressed by everything he’s done but he has a lot of work to do, he knows that. … He finished the year in high-A ball and that’s about where he’s going to start.”
Baez, 20, batted .333 at Class A Peoria with a .979 OPS, 10 doubles, 12 homers and 33 RBIs, and batted .188 in 23 games at Class A Daytona. For now, he’ll stay at shortstop although fans may see him play some second base in Cactus League games just to get him some at-bats.
“He’s a shortstop and he’s going to play shortstop,” Dale Sveum said. “If he happens to get in a game at third or second base, it’ll be because of flat numbers. It’s not that we need to take a look at him anywhere else — that’ll be a development question down the road.”
The invite to the Cubs’ big league camp was made to give Baez some insight into what it’s about.
“It’s nice for the fans to be able to see him, it’s nice for us to be able to see him, but this is not about making the Major League team, this is about experience,” GM Jed Hoyer said.
The same is true for highly touted outfielder Jorge Soler. Epstein said their plan is to have players spend at least one year at Triple-A. Soler played briefly at Class A Peoria last season.
– Carrie Muskat
For those of you interested in uniform numbers for some of the new Cubs, here’s an updated list:
32 – Scott Baker
46 – Scott Feldman
71 – Trey McNutt
56 – Hector Rondon
57 – Carlos Villanueva
41 – Arodys Vizcaino
67 – Robert Whitenack
4 – Dioner Navarro
61 – Christian Villanueva
74 – Logan Watkins
19 – Nate Schierholtz
68 – Jorge Soler
76 – Drew Carpenter
77 – Dayan Diaz
60 – Jensen Lewis
85 – Barret Loux
50 – Blake Parker
63 – Zach Putnam
81 – Nick Struck
47 – Hisanori Takahashi
59 – Cory Wade
79 – J.C. Boscan
78 – Michael Brenly
82 – Rafael Lopez
70 – Javier Baez
6 – Alberto Gonzalez
20 – Brent Lillibridge
65 – Edwin Maysonet
75 – Brad Nelson
66 – Brian Bogusevic
80 – Johermyn Chavez
16 – Darnell McDonald
Javier Baez is among the 22 non-roster players invited to the Cubs’ Major League Spring Training camp, which begins Feb. 12 when pitchers and catchers hold their first formal workout in Mesa, Ariz. Position players are invited to report Feb. 16 with the team’s first full squad workout on Feb. 17.
The following 11 pitchers have been invited to Major League camp: right-handed pitchers Drew Carpenter, Jaye Chapman, Casey Coleman, Dayan Diaz, Jensen Lewis, Barret Loux, Blake Parker, Zach Putnam, Nick Struck and Cory Wade, as well as left-handed pitcher Hisanori Takahashi.
Three catchers have been invited to big league camp: J.C. Boscan, Michael Brenly and Rafael Lopez.
Five infielders have been invited to major league camp: Baez, Alberto Gonzalez, Brent Lillibridge, Edwin Maysonet and Brad Nelson.
Three outfielders have been invited to big league camp: Brian Bogusevic, Johermyn Chavez and Darnell McDonald.
– Carrie Muskat
The Cubs had three players included in MLB.com’s top 100 prospects, revealed Tuesday night on MLB Network. The trio includes Javier Baez (ranked No. 16), and outfielders Albert Almora (No. 39) and Jorge Soler (No. 42). The annual ranking of baseball’s biggest and brightest young talent is assembled by MLB.com’s Draft and prospect expert Jonathan Mayo, who compiles input from industry sources, including scouts and scouting directors. It is based on analysis of players’ skill sets, upsides, closeness to the Majors and potential immediate impact to their teams. The list only includes players with rookie status in 2013.
Baez, 20, batted .333 with 12 home runs, 10 doubles and 33 RBIs in 57 games at Class A Peoria, then hit .188 when promoted to Class A Daytona. Almora, 18, the Cubs’ top pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, played for the Arizona Rookie League team and also Class A Boise last season, and combined to bat .321. Soler, who turns 21 on Feb. 25, played in the Rookie League and then Peoria last season, hitting a combined .299 with five home runs and 25 RBIs in 34 games. The Cuban outfielder signed a nine-year, $30 million contract with the Cubs last June. He made Wrigley Field look small in September when he took batting practice with the Cubs, hitting five home runs, including two that cleared the left field bleachers.
– Carrie Muskat
A dozen Cubs prospects completed a week-long rookie development camp on Thursday. The sessions included a workout at Northwestern University, a seminar, and some extra training. Kerry Wood, Mark Prior, David DeJesus, Theo Epstein and Tom Ricketts were among the people who addressed the group. The 12 players who participated included position players Javier Baez, Jae-Hoon Ha, Matt Szczur, and Logan Watkins, and pitchers Dallas Beeler, Marcus Hatley, Barret Loux, Trey McNutt, Zach Rosscup, Nick Struck, Robert Whitenack and Tony Zych.
Jason McLeod, the Cubs scouting and player development director, was asked about a few of the prospects. Here’s an update:
* How close is Baez to the big leagues?
“Javy’s still so young,” McLeod said. “He’s only played really three months of a full season and obviously, last year, he took the Midwest League by storm in a short time there and hit some bumps there in Daytona. Being that he just turned 20 years old [on Dec. 1], obviously, he’s a talented young man, he’s going to ultimately decide [when he's ready]. He loves to work, he works extremely hard. The plan for him this year is to get a full season under his belt.”
* McNutt was used as a starter and reliever last season at Double-A Tennessee. What’s his future role? McLeod said that’s to be determined. The results were better when McNutt pitched in relief and that may be the best spot.
* Jorge Soler worked out in the Miami area this offseason, and had some sessions with new hitting coordinator Anthony Iapoce and player development director Brandon Hyde.
“He’s still getting used to being in the states and getting ready to coming into Major League camp,” McLeod said of the Cuban outfielder.
Where will Soler play in 2013? That’s also to be determined. He spent last season at Class A Peoria.
“He’s put himself in position to start at a higher level but we have to see how things shake out,” McLeod said, noting that they have an overload of outfielders, including Reggie Golden and Evan Crawford, who are both coming back from injuries.
* Whitenack has missed time after needing Tommy John surgery in 2011, but is now 100 percent.
“I’m really looking forward to seeing what everyone here saw two years ago,” McLeod said of the right-hander, who was 7-0 in 11 starts in 2011 before he was hurt.
* Junior Lake has played infield and outfield in the Dominican Republic Winter League. Where will he end up? McLeod said Lake will get most of his playing time at shortstop or third, but will also play in the outfield this spring.
“We want to maximize his ability and versatility,” McLeod said.
– Carrie Muskat
Cubs top prospect Javier Baez has a non-displaced fracture of the tip of his right thumb, but was expected to be ready to go in Spring Training, GM Jed Hoyer said Thursday. Baez was playing in the Arizona Fall League when he was injured last Friday, apparently while giving someone a celebratory high five. Infielder Logan Watkins, who played for Double-A Tennessee, was added to the Mesa Solar Sox roster to take Baez’s spot.
“It is unfortunate,” Hoyer said of the injury to Baez. “He had some really good moments in the fall league and also had some really good learning moments.”
Brian Harper, who is a hitting coach for the Solar Sox after being the manager at Tennessee, kept Hoyer updated on Baez’s progress in the AFL with daily reports, saying the shortstop had made good adjustments.
“That’s the real shame of it — [Baez] played plenty of games this year,” Hoyer said. “To be a young player in the fall league and having to make adjustments was really good for him. The injury won’t hinder anything going forward.”
– Carrie Muskat
Cubs top prospect Javier Baez has been offiically removed from the Mesa Solar Sox roster, sidelined by a broken thumb. He’s been replaced on Mesa’s roster by infielder Logan Watkins, who was the Cubs’ 21st round pick in 2008. Watkins batted .281 in 133 games with Double-A Tennessee this season, with nine home runs, 20 doubles, 11 triples, 28 stolen bases and 52 RBIs. He primarily played second base, some shortstop and also a few games in center field. Baez was expected to be fully healed by Spring Training.
On Wednesday, Matt Szczur was 1-for-5 in Mesa’s 2-2 tie with Salt River in Arizona Fall League play. Nick Struck gave up two hits and walked one over two innings in relief. On Thursday, Mesa will play host to Peoria at HoHoKam Park, with first pitch scheduled for 12:35 p.m. MT.
– Carrie Muskat