Results tagged ‘ Kerry Wood ’
Kerry Wood pitched Thursday for the first time since May 18, and threw five pitches and that was enough. The right-hander entered the Cubs game in the fifth with one on and two outs, threw five pitches to James Darnell and struck him out. That was enough. As Wood came off the field in Peoria, he got a fist pump from pitching coach Chris Bosio and a handshake from manager Dale Sveum. Wood was expected to pitch two more times before the Cubs break camp.
– Carrie Muskat
What went right:
Paul Maholm struck out six over five scoreless innings against the Padres in Mesa. Carlos Marmol, pitching in his first game since March 20, gave up one hit, walked one and struck out one in one inning. Bryan LaHair, who had five hits in his last six at-bats, hit a RBI double in the first. In Scottsdale, Blake DeWitt was 2-for-4 with a double while Scott Maine walked two and struck out one in one inning.
What went wrong:
Cubs missed a chance in the second when they loaded bases with two outs and Padres pitcher Tim Stauffer got Starlin Castro to fly out. Castro did draw a walk in the first, his first this spring, and doubled in the fifth.
“I just want to stay where I’m at. I want to stay consistent with the breaking ball. I’ve had a good spring working on that, probably more than I have normally in Spring Training, and just command. You need to have a second pitch and have command of your fastball when you break camp. I’m trying to be fresh for the start of the year.” — Kerry Wood on his spring game plan
* The Cubs acquired right-handed reliever Shawn Camp, who was released by the Mariners on March 21. He may not be the only pitcher added before the regular season begins. The Cubs are looking at other options for the bullpen. Rafael Dolis could make the team. He picked up the save in Mesa and Dale Sveum has raved about his stuff this spring. Earlier this spring, the Cubs claimed Frankie De La Cruz off waivers from the Brewers. They may not be done as far as they try to find a workable bullpen.
Trever Miller was released on Monday, which left James Russell and Scott Maine as the only left-handed relievers still in camp. At least one of them will stay. Marmol and Kerry Wood are set, which would leave four openings. Lendy Castillo, 22, the Rule 5 pickup who is a converted shortstop, has a 3.12 ERA in eight appearances and has shown a lot of poise for a pitcher who last season was on a Class A roster in only his second season of pitching. Casey Coleman pitched well Monday against the Padres, giving up one hit and striking out two over two innings of relief. He could be the long man. So could Rodrigo Lopez if he’s not in the rotation.
* Kerry Wood is slated to pitch Saturday. It’s been his plan to cut back on Cactus League innings to prepare for the regular season.
Matt Garza will make his fifth spring start on Tuesday when the Cubs travel to Goodyear to face the Reds. Garza did not give up an earned run over five innings in his last outing, and has eight strikeouts over 12 1/3 innings. The game will be broadcast on Cubs.com
– Carrie Muskat
Kerry Wood was scheduled to pitch on Saturday and will have at least one more tune-up before the regular season starts. That’s all the Cubs right-hander apparently needs.
“I know what I need to get ready,” Wood said Monday. “We talked and the number was eight to 10 innings before camp started. I’ve done plenty of throwing. It’s just getting comfortable with secondary pitches.”
Last year, Wood totaled nine innings in nine Cactus League games and in the last six years, has pitched in as many as 12 2/3 innings in ’08 when he was the team’s closer. But this spring, the team decided to slow things down. So far, he’s appeared in four games for a total of 3 1/3 innings. The only time Wood has thrown less than six innings in Spring Training in the last six years was in 2007 when he reached five, then was shutdown and began the season on the disabled list with right shoulder tendinitis, and also in 2010 when he suffered a strained right lat after two innings in two games.
“I really just slowed it down,” Wood said of this spring. “I got off to such a fast start and I wanted to time it so we’re ready to roll when the season starts. I’ve got three, or four outings planned down the stretch and I’ll be ready for Opening Day.”
He did have some back spasms but that was before the Cactus League season began.
“I just want to stay where I’m at,” Wood said. “I want to stay consistent with the breaking ball. I’ve had a good spring working on that, probably more than I have normally in Spring Training, and just command. You need to have a second pitch and have command of your fastball when you break camp. I’m trying to be fresh for the start of the year.”
– Carrie Muskat
Carlos Marmol, pulled from a game last week because of cramps in his right hand, was scheduled to throw on Monday for the Cubs, while his main set-up pitcher, Kerry Wood, will get likely get two more appearances in spring games before the regular season begins. Marmol was lifted from a game last Tuesday and underwent an MRI, which revealed no significant nerve injury. The Cubs closer felt some tightness in his neck and shoulders as well. Wood had some back problems early in spring, pitched in four games and has not appeared in a game since March 18.
“There’s no reason for any extra workload,” Dale Sveum said Sunday about Wood.
The light workload was apparently planned before Spring Training began, Sveum said. Wood also has not had any side sessions. Sveum said the right-hander had no other physical problems.
– Carrie Muskat
Kerry Wood has not pitched since last Sunday. Dale Sveum said Saturday there are no issues and the right-hander will get a couple more outings before the team breaks camp. Wood, the Cubs primary set-up pitcher, did have some issues with his back this spring.
“The back always flares up once in a while,” Sveum said of Wood. “That’s not a concern now. He’s fine.”
– Carrie Muskat
Paul Maholm makes his first Cactus League start on Monday when the Cubs face the Reds at HoHoKam Park. The Cubs are using a DH since it is Maholm’s first start. Maholm was slowed this spring by the flu but Dale Sveum says the lefty isn’t that far behind the other starters.
“He hasn’t missed any time, he just hasn’t been out there for the first eight games to face another team,” Sveum said Monday.
The plan is for Maholm to go two innings or 30-35 pitches.
“Hopefully, two innings before the 35 pitches,” Sveum said.
Last season, Maholm was 6-14 with a 3.66 ERA in 26 starts with the Pirates. He made his final start Aug. 17 and then was shut down for the rest of the season because of a strained left shoulder. Sveum said they’ll watch Maholm’s innings.
“I think he’s a guy you have to stay on top of and keep those innings at a certain pace,” Sveum said. “He knows and understands how to get quick outs with the sinker so he can go deeper in the game.”
Other pitchers slated to go Monday include Lendy Castillo, Jeff Samardzija, Kerry Wood and Carlos Marmol.
– Carrie Muskat
Dale Sveum edged Kerry Wood to advance in the first round of the Cubs bunting tournament on Monday although the manager got a little help from the turf as he advanced when Wood’s last bunt swerved into the 30-point box rather than the 40 points that he needed.
“That was about as equal as you can get,” Sveum said. “I was lucky the grass was growing the other way.”
Sveum vs. Wood was the last match of the day Monday, and the manager called on pitching coach and former teammate Chris Bosio to be the “pitcher” rather than coach Pat Listach, who had thrown to the players in the six previous matches. Wood needed to get three bunts into the 40-point box to beat the skipper and just came up short.
“I got lucky by the way the grass was growing to the east,” Sveum said. “The ball kind of fell off the white line. I thought I was done and I was going to shake his hand, and the ball just trickled off the white line at the end.”
Others to advance on Monday include pitchers Carlos Marmol and Ryan Dempster. Position players to advance include Marlon Byrd, Geovany Soto, David DeJesus and Jeff Baker.
“It’s a fun thing but also a lot of people want to get better and care about it,” Sveum said. “This tournament shows you guys who like to compete as well. Coming into a camp, you get a feeling of guys who are bearing down and competing and some guys who aren’t competing as well. You get to know somebody a little bit through this tournament.”
– Carrie Muskat
Starlin Castro had a little welt on his right forearm after he was hit by a Kerry Wood fastball during live BP on Monday. Castro said he was OK, and the ball didn’t hit him too hard. After he was hit, Castro came out of the cage to be examined but he did go back in against Wood later in the round. When Wood was finished, he went over to Castro to check on the shortstop.
“He said, ‘I’m sorry,’” Castro said. “It was a fastball in, and it hit me.”
The pain must not have lasted long as Castro lined a ball off the right field fence off Carlos Marmol in his next live BP session. Castro also participated in two batting practice sessions off coaches.
“I’m OK,” Castro said. “He didn’t hit me too hard.”
The shortstop admitted it did hurt a little but that he’s not afraid in the cage.
“I’m never scared about that,” Castro said. “I’m never scared. I’m scared if it hits me in the head — that’s not good. … It happens all the time, practice, games, everywhere.”
Cubs manager Dale Sveum didn’t expect Castro to miss any activities on Tuesday.
“He’s fine,” Sveum said. “I wasn’t there to witness it but it sounded a little more scary but he’s fine. He stepped right in and did all his drills after that. It was almost like he didn’t get hit.”
– Carrie Muskat
The first round is expected to wrap up Monday at Fitch Park in the Cubs’ first bunt tournament. On Sunday, position players Darwin Barney, Starlin Castro, Ian Stewart and Joe Mather advanced, while pitchers Travis Wood, Jeff Samardzija, Randy Wells and Andy Sonnanstine also won their matches. There are 64 entries, and the bracket is similar to the NCAA basketball tournament set-up. Players get points for each bunt in three rounds of eight bunts each.
Dale Sveum pitched to the competitors on Sunday. Who will throw to him on Monday when he faces Kerry Wood?
“Probably [Chris] Bosio,” he said of the Cubs pitching coach. “He throws a nice soft ball. I’m going to get the best BP pitcher. I wish I could throw to myself.”
Among Monday’s matchups are:
Blake DeWitt vs. Geovany Soto
Jeff Baker vs. Alfredo Amezaga
Marlon Byrd vs. Reed Johnson
David DeJesus vs. Alfonso Soriano
Matt Garza vs. Carlos Marmol
Paul Maholm vs. Rodrigo Lopez
Ryan Dempster vs. Trever Miller
Kerry Wood vs. Dale Sveum
– Carrie Muskat
The bracket is up and there’s been plenty of trash talking. It’s time for the Cubs’ first annual match play bunting tournament to begin.
First round action with the pitchers will get underway Thursday at Fitch Park on a half field, marked with a grid that gives points from 10 to 40, depending on the bunt’s location. There are 64 entries, including Cubs manager Dale Sveum and strength and conditioning coach Tim Buss.
“We had to get it to 64 — we had 63 guys in camp, so I said, ‘Just throw myself in,’” Sveum said Wednesday. “Losing [Chris] Carpenter yesterday to the Red Sox, we put ‘Bussy’ in his spot.”
Carpenter was dealt to the Red Sox as part of the compensation package for Cubs president Theo Epstein, so the right-hander loses his chance at the prize. Sveum will face pitcher Kerry Wood, who says he took four or five swings last year.
“It’s a layup,” Wood said. “I should get right through that one, no problem.”
What Wood may not know is Sveum and Buss have been practicing on the half field.
Sveum started the tourney when he managed in the Minor Leagues with the Pirates.
“I always remembered it and always wanted to do something like that if I took over as manager,” Sveum said. “I thought it would be fun for the team and break things up a little bit and have a little fun with it. It’ll be fun as we go along, especially when we get to the sweet 16.”
Sveum had nothing to do with the seedings.
“I’m a 16 [seed],” he said of the bracket, “and I’m not a 16 seed.”
Wood picked Ryan Dempster and Randy Wells as early favorites since they’ve had more at-bats as starters. There will be a bracket for pitchers and another for position players. The top pitcher and position player will then square off in the final.
“It’s a good way to keep it lively,” Wood said. “Bunting gets very monotonous and covering first and all that stuff, so it’s nice to throw us a little bone and make it a competition and get the work done at the same time.”
Speedy outfielder Tony Campana has been boasting about his bunting skills, and will face catcher Steve Clevenger in the first round. Both infielder Jeff Baker and outfielder Reed Johnson have tired of the talk. They predict Campana will be eliminated in the first round because it’s not a bunt-and-run event, just straight bunting.
“You can’t run,” Johnson said.
“I know,” Campana said. “I think I’ll be OK. Clevenger, I’m not worried about him that much. I’m not worried until the third round. I think that’s when the challenges start coming. If somebody wants to beat me, that’s good. That means I have to worry and they’re going to try really hard. <p> “I’m kind of putting a bullseye on my back by talking so much trash,” Campana said. “If everybody’s talking about me, they know I’m dangerous.”
Pitcher Chris Rusin was a little nervous. His first-round opponent is Buss. He can’t lose to the strength coach.
“The pressure’s on me,” Rusin said.
– Carrie Muskat