Results tagged ‘ Javier Baez ’
* The addition of Blake Parker gives the Cubs another option for save situations, joining Pedro Strop, Hector Rondon and Justin Grimm. The Cubs are trying to fill in for Jose Veras, who will be used in a different role after his struggles in his first four games. Parker is the career saves leader at Iowa, and knows how hard it is to get the last three outs.
“It’s an unbelievably hard role, especially in the big leagues with the crowd involved and the umpires are a little bit tighter and the quality of the hitters is way better,” Parker said. “It’s the hardest job for a pitcher to get those last three outs. To just be able to come in and get outs is my thing, whether it’s the ninth or the sixth.”
The Cubs have seen two pitchers – Strop and Rondon – each record a save within the first 11 games of the season. Last April, the Cubs had three different pitchers record a save within the month of April for the first time since the save became an official MLB statistic in 1969.
“They give me various options,” Renteria said of Strop, Parker, Rondon and Grimm. “You still have to put them in situations where they feel comfortable.”
* The Cubs have two off days this week but will not tweak their rotation, which means Jeff Samardzija, Carlos Villanueva and Edwin Jackson will start next weekend against the Reds at Wrigley Field. Villanueva will stay in the rotation despite lasting three innings Saturday against the Cardinals.
* After an off day Monday, the Cubs play the Yankees in the first of eight Interleague series this season at Yankee Stadium. This will be the Cubs’ first-ever regular season games at the new Yankee Stadium, which will be the 122nd different ballpark in which the team will have played. After Tuesday, the Cubs will have played a regular-season game in every current Major League city and a game in every active ballpark.
“It was a little more traditional, and it was more of a pitcher’s ballpark,” Jose Veras said of the old Yankee Stadium. “The [new one] is a hitters ballpark now. It’s way different now.”
The Cubs did play the first two games in the history of new Yankee Stadium, however, when the teams met in exhibition action prior to 2009. The Yankees won both games.
* Top prospect Javier Baez was placed on the seven-day disabled list with Triple-A Iowa because of a sprained left ankle, injured while taking ground balls on Friday. Baez was 4-for-26 (.154) with two home runs in eight games this season.
* This weekend was manager Rick Renteria’s first exposure to the Cubs-Cardinals rivalry.
“I noticed, looking outside my hotel room, that there were a lot of people waiting to get into [Busch] stadium and that was early in the morning,” Renteria said. “It’s neat. I think the fan base here and in Chicago are unique. I like my fan base.”
– Carrie Muskat
* Javier Baez was placed on Iowa’s seven-day disabled list because of a sprained left ankle, suffered Friday while taking ground balls during batting practice. He was 4-for-26 with a double, two home runs and three RBIs in eight games so far.
* Outfielder Jae-Hoon Ha has been transferred to Tennessee from Triple-A Iowa. Ha has played for Tennessee in each of the last three seasons. In a corresponding move, infielder Giuseppe Papaccio has been transferred from Tennessee to Extended Spring Training. He was hitless in two pinch-hit appearances. Left-hander Austin Kirk has been transferred from High-A Daytona to Tennessee. In two relief outings for Daytona, Kirk gave up four earned runs over 4 1/3 innings. Right-handed reliever Frank Batista has been transferred to Extended Spring Training from Tennessee.
* Pitcher Duane Underwood has joined Kane County from the Cubs’ spring training complex in Arizona while pitcher Scott Frazier has been transferred to Arizona. Underwood is active and scheduled to start Sunday’s game. Underwood, a second round pick in 2012, went 3-4 with a 4.97 ERA at Short-A Boise in 2013. Underwood is one of three 19 year olds on the roster, joining fellow starting pitcher Jen-Ho Tseng and infielder Carlos Penalver.
Javier Baez hit his second homer of the season to back Kyle Hendricks and lead Iowa to a 5-1 win over Nashville on Thursday. Hendricks gave up five hits and walked one over seven innings, striking out five. Chris Valaika had two hits and two RBI, and Marr Szczur and Arismendy Alcantara each had two hits.
Jake Arrieta gave up three hits and walked two over 3 2/3 innings in a rehab start for Tennessee, which lost 1-0 to Chattanooga. Arrieta struck out four, and threw 66 pitches, 44 strikes.
Tayler Scott gave up eight runs — four earned — on 11 hits over three innings in Daytona’s 12-2 loss to Dunedin. Bijan Rademacher was 3-for-3.
Tyler Skulina gave up five runs over 5 2/3 innings and got the win in Kane County’s 7-5 victory over Fort Wayne. Skulina struck out six. Daniel Lockhart and Carlos Penalver combined to go 4-for-10 and scored five runs. Yasiel Balaguert had three RBI.
The development of Javier Baez continued this past weekend, and Theo Epstein said the team’s top prospect got an important lesson, thanks to his teammates. Baez was hitless in his first nine at-bats at Triple-A Iowa, and ejected from Saturday’s game after arguing a checked swing third strike call. He reportedly exchanged words and had an altercation in the dugout with teammate Eli Whiteside.
“He had a nice conversation with a teammate and that was a good thing,” Cubs manager Rick Renteria said Tuesday. “It’s a tremendously great learning experience.”
Baez ended his hitless streak in style Sunday with a pinch-hit home run in the seventh inning.
“I think it was a great development and experience for him,” Epstein said. “He started out not feeling real comfortable at the plate and he let it frustrate him and he showed it on the field. His teammates, they know how good he can be and how good a teammate he can be and they called him out on it.
“He responded just the right way and took it to heart and came back the next day with a pinch-hit home run,” Epstein said. “He’s hit the ball hard in five straight plate appearances. He’s taking the responsibility of being a good teammate and taking it to heart. Experiences like that will just help him get where he needs to be.”
– Carrie Muskat
* Chris Valaika hit a walk-off RBI single to lift Iowa to a 4-3 win over Memphis on Sunday. Iowa erased a 2-1 deficit when Javier Baez hit a pinch-hit home run in the seventh. It was his first Triple-A hit in 10 at-bats. Eric Jokisch started, and gave up two runs, none earned, on six hits over seven innings. Josh Vitters was 3-for-4.
The home run for Baez came one day after he was ejected for arguing balls and strikes. Baez’s frustration carried over into the dugout where he and catcher Eli Whiteside were involved in an altercation, according to the Des Moines Register.
“I was mad, he was mad, everybody was mad,” Baez told the Des Moines Register. “We argued a little. Nothing personal.”
Baez talked to Whiteside on Sunday, and patched things up. Baez is aware of the high expectations on him.
“I don’t really care about what other people think,” he told the Des Moines Register. “I’ll do my job and I’ll do the best I can for my teammates and for the team.”
* Dustin Geiger hit a solo home run in the ninth but it wasn’t enough as Tennessee lost 3-2 to Pensacola on Sunday. Geiger was 2-for-3. Ivan Pineyro started, and gave up two runs over four innings.
* Daytona was off on Sunday and scheduled to return to action Monday against Brevard County.
* Quad Cities scored five runs in the seventh to beat Kane County, 7-3. Juan Paniagua started and gave up two runs on three hits and four walks over four innings.
* Kyle Hendricks gave up six earned runs on seven hits over 4 2/3 innings in Iowa’s 11-1 loss to Memphis. Chris Coghlan was 2-for-4. Marcus Hatley struck out four over two innings of relief. Javier Baez was ejected in the third inning for arguing a checked swing third strike call.
“Javy probably should have gotten thrown out,” Iowa manager Marty Pevey told the Des Moines Register. “As soon as he throws his hands up in the air, you’re gone.”
Baez is hitless in his first nine at-bats and has struck out six times.
“He’s frustrated,” Pevey told the Des Moines Register. “There’s frustration there. Anybody that competes is going to react that way. He’s got to understand that all his teammates have his back and we understand.”
On Sunday, Baez delivered a pinch-hit home run in the seventh for Iowa.
* Jake Arrieta served up one run and took the loss in a Minor League rehab start for Tennessee. The Smokies lost, 5-0, in a game shortened because of rain. Arrieta gave up one run on one walk and struck out three. He threw 42 pitches, 28 strikes, and the run scored on a wild pitch in the third inning.
* Albert Almora was 5-for-6 to pace Daytona’s 21-hit attack in a 13-2 win over Brevard County. Every Daytona starter had at least one hit. Tayler Scott picked up the win, giving up two hits over seven shutout innings. Jeimer Candelario hit his first homer, a solo shot in the fourth.
* Tyler Skulina threw six shutout innings but did not get a decision in Kane County’s 2-1 loss to Quad Cities in the first game of a doubleheader. Kane County took the second game, 5-4, in 10 innings. Jake Hannemann and Daniel Canela each hit home runs in the second game.
Javier Baez and Kyle Hendricks, the Cubs’ 2013 Minor League player and pitcher of the year, are both on the Triple-A Iowa roster, announced Wednesday.
The roster features 10 players on the Cubs’ 40-man roster, 13 players with Major League experience, and 12 that have played with Iowa before.
Baez is the Cubs’ top prospect after hitting .282 (146-for-517) with 37 home runs and 111 RBI combined between high-A Daytona and Double-A Tennessee last year. He will be joined by fellow prospects Arismendy Alcantara and Christian Villanueva on the infield. Alcantara represented the Cubs in the All-Star Futures Game in New York last year. Villanueva led the Southern League in doubles, total bases, and extra-base hits last season.
Veterans Lars Anderson and Chris Valaika round out the infield. Both have big league experience. Anderson was up with the Red Sox for 30 games from 2010-12 and Valaika has played 55 games with the Reds (2010-11) and Marlins (2013).
Former top prospects Brett Jackson and Josh Vitters return to the patrol the outfield. They’ll be joined by Matt Szczur, who played at Tennessee last season, and veteran Chris Coghlan, who won the NL Rookie of the Year in 2009.
The Cubs will feature three left-handers in the starting rotation, including 2013 Pacific Coast League All-Star Chris Rusin who will get the start on Opening Day. It’s his second straight Opening Day start for Iowa. The rest of the rotation will be right-hander Carlos Pimentel, Hendricks, lefty Eric Jokisch, and lefty Tsuyoshi Wada. Pimentel signed with the Cubs as a Minor league free agent after seven seasons in the Rangers’ organization.
Hendricks combined to go 13-4 with a 2.00 ERA in 27 starts between Tennessee and Iowa last year, finishing seventh in minor league baseball in ERA. Jokisch, a product of Northwestern University in Chicago, pitched a no-hitter last year for Tennessee, and led all Cubs’ minor leaguers with 137 strikeouts in 160 2/3 innings.
Wada recorded 107 wins in 201 games over nine seasons with Fukuoka in his native Japan before coming to the United States and signing with the Orioles in 2012. He has pitched the last two seasons at Triple-A Norfolk.
The bullpen has six of the eight pitchers who appeared for Iowa in past seasons, including Blake Parker, Casey Coleman, Marcus Hatley, Marcos Mateo, Yoanner Negrin and Zac Rosscup. Eli Whiteside and Rafael Lopez will handle the catching duties.
The Cubs made roster moves on Saturday. Blake Parker was optioned to Triple-A Iowa, and Javier Baez, Brian Schlitter, Jonathan Sanchez, Chang-Yong Lim, Chris Valaika and Casper Wells assigned to Minor League camp. With the moves, the spring camp roster is now at 37.
Cubs top prospect Javier Baez was fine on Saturday, one day after coming out of a game because of a right heel contusion suffered because of some bad cleats. With one out in the sixth and the Cubs leading 4-0 against the White Sox, Baez hit a grounder to shortstop Alexei Ramirez. Baez beat the throw but stepped awkwardly on first base and appeared to slip with his right foot.
“It’s happened before,” Baez said Saturday. “I can’t wear [metal] cleats. I reached for the bag and I felt it a little bit on my heel. I could’ve kept playing but it was my last at-bat anyways so they took me out of the game.”
He has no problem with rubber cleats but was wearing the metal ones because of the wet surface in Glendale.
“If I wear cleats, I just have to cut the back cleat and I’ll be all right,” Baez said. “When I hit the ground hard with all my weight, it hurts.”
He said his shoe “pinched” his heel but the pain was gone quickly.
“It bothered me for a couple minutes and it was gone,” he said. “It’s happened before.”
Baez was listed as a reserve on the Cubs’ roster for Saturday’s game against the Reds.
– Carrie Muskat
Edwin Jackson gets the start on Saturday when the Cubs play host to the Reds at Cubs Park in Mesa. Mike Olt, trying to lock up a spot on the Opening Day roster, will make his second start at third base. Luis Valbuena showed his power on Friday, hitting two home runs in a 7-0 win over the White Sox. We’ll get an update on Javier Baez, who bruised his right heel running to first base on Friday in Glendale. Also, Starlin Castro may get some at-bats in the Cubs’ Minor League games in Mesa. The Triple-A and Double-A teams are facing the Giants squads on Saturday.
The Cubs-Reds game will be on WGN-TV and WGN Radio. Here’s the lineup:
E. Jackson P
* If you’re coming to Saturday’s game, please take a moment to check out the Cubs Wives mystery baseball fundraiser in the left field corner, located inside the ballpark. For $30, fans can purchase an autographed baseball. You also can check out some game-used items to purchase. Proceeds go to Paz de Cristo in Mesa.