Results tagged ‘ Justin Grimm ’
The Cubs Convention closed on Sunday with an informative session on the Minor League system. Here are some highlights from that:
* Javier Baez will open the 2014 season at Triple-A Iowa and is close to getting to the big leagues. The Cubs already have a young shortstop in Starlin Castro, who turns 24 in March. This spring, Baez may get some playing time at second base, depending on what the Cubs and manager Rick Renteria want to do.
“Our goal for Javy is to have him play shortstop for as long as he possibly can,” said Jason McLeod, director of scouting and player development. “He certainly has some things to clean up with the errors that were made last year.”
The Cubs’ No. 1 Draft pick in 2011, Baez made 44 errors combined last season.
* Some past Cubs’ first-round picks have struggled. Brett Jackson, 25, the No. 1 selection in 2009, and Josh Vitters, 24, the first-round pick in 2007, both battled injuries last season. Jackson batted .210 in 95 games, while Vitters hit .267 in 33 games.
“They did not stay on the field long enough, first and foremost,” McLeod said. “We still have belief in both of them, especially a guy like Josh. He was drafted in 2007, and you’ve heard his name so much, you’d probably think he’s 26 years old or 25 years old. When he was on the field, the performance was pretty good. He was born to hit and he’s always hit. There were other parts of his game that we felt he had to work on.”
Vitters is focusing on left field, and he and Jackson will be in the Cubs’ Spring Training camp.
“They both took this offseason to regroup, get healthy, and they’ll both be in camp here in a couple weeks,” McLeod said.
* McLeod has a little bit of history with Justin Grimm, acquired from the Rangers in the Matt Garza deal last July. When McLeod was with the Red Sox, he drafted Grimm out of high school. The Red Sox invited the right-hander to Fenway Park for a visit and he arrived alone. Grimm had a scholarship offer to attend Georgia.
“I think he just wanted a free trip to Boston, to be honest with you,” McLeod said Sunday.
Grimm didn’t sign, and was selected in the fifth round by the Rangers in 2010. He signed. But McLeod saw him before that when Grimm was pitching for Georgia in the SEC Tournament as a freshman. Theo Epstein, who was the Red Sox GM at the time, watched the young pitcher. It was the first time Epstein saw Grimm.
“He comes out firing 97 mile an hour fastballs, and Theo is about 15 rows up behind me and comes down in front of a full section of scouts and tells me, ‘You’re fired,’” McLeod said.
In the end, the Cubs and McLeod did get Grimm as he was part of the package for Garza.
* McLeod said the Cubs are waiting to see which team Masahiro Tanaka picks. Expect a decision this week. Friday is the deadline.
“Obviously, he’s talented and I think any team in baseball would want a 25 year old starting pitcher,” McLeod said. “We’ve scouted him extensively over the years. … The evaluation process is complete. We met with him last week in [Los Angeles] and we’ll find out in the next week. He’s obviously talented.”
* Among the Convention highlights was seeing the fans’ response to Derrek Lee, Ted Lilly and Mark Prior. All received loud ovations whenever they appeared at an event.
* Mark your calendar: Single game Cubs tickets go on sale March 7.
* If you can’t make it to Mesa, Ariz., this spring, you can listen to Cubs broadcasts on Cubs.com with Len Kasper and Mick Gillespie.
– Carrie Muskat
* The Cubs look to win three-straight for the first time since sweeping the Giants in San Francisco, July 26-28. They also are trying to win three-straight games in a single homestand for the first time since May 29-31 vs. the White Sox (2-0) and Diamondbacks (1-0).
* With Justin Grimm’s season debut Friday, the Cubs have utilized 53 players, tying the franchise single-season record done a season ago. Still looking to make their season debuts are catcher J.C. Boscan and pitchers Daniel Bard and Chang-Yong Lim.
* The Cubs rank second in the Majors with 95 home runs at home. The Orioles lead MLB, having hit 100 at Camden Yards. The Cubs’ 95 home runs at Wrigley are their most at home since hitting 106 in 2008.
The Cubs added pitchers Justin Grimm and Brooks Raley and catcher J.C. Boscan from Triple-A Iowa and selected Zac Rosscup from Iowa. Rosscup was not on the 40-man and to make room, outfielder Dave Sappelt was designated for assignment.
Grimm, 25, was acquired from the Rangers on July 22 in the Matt Garza deal. The right-hander was 2-3 with a 4.68 ERA in eight starts at Iowa. He was acquired from the Rangers in the xx. In his last outing against Nashville, he gave up one run on five hits over six innings, striking out six.
Raley, 25, was 8-10 with one save in 27 games (25 starts) for Iowa, giving up 70 earned runs over 141 1/3 innings, while striking out 95 and walking 45.
Rosscup, 25, acquired from the Rays in the Garza deal in 2011, began the season at Double-A Tennessee, and was 2-1 with three saves in 37 games in relief, holding batters to a .197 batting average against. He was promoted in early August to Iowa, and did not give up an earned run over 7 2/3 innings in nine games. He struck out 17.
Boscan, 33, batted .232 in 74 games at Iowa with nine doubles and 18 RBIs. He’s appeared in 11 Major League games with the Braves. He’s played professional baseball since 1997.
– Carrie Muskat
Justin Grimm gave up three runs over seven innings in Iowa’s 3-0 loss to New Orleans. Ty Wright had two hits. Kyle Hendricks starts Sunday.
Eric Jokisch gave up three earned runs over 6 1/3 innings in Tennessee’s 6-4 loss to Chattanooga. Javier Baez hit a double and drove in a run, extending his hitting streak to seven games. Christian Villanueva had one RBIs and a double, his 38th, tops in the Southern League.
Ivan Pineyro gave up six runs over five innings in Daytona’s 10-2 loss to Brevard County. Kris Bryant had two hits and one RBIs, and has hit safely in five of six games with Daytona.
Michael Heesch gave up three runs over six innings in Kane County’s 7-6 win over Clinton. The Cougars rallied with three runs in the seventh. Rock Shoulders, Oliver Zapata and Giuseppe Papaccio each had two hits and one RBIs.
Michael Wagner gave up three runs over three innings in Boise’s 11-0 loss to Tri-City. Carlos Penalver had two hits and a stolen base.
Charcer Burks, Jeffrey Baez and Kevin Brown each had multi-hit games in Mesa’s 9-7 win over the Reds.