April 1, 2013 – Cubs @ Pirates / Opening Day Preview

It’s here!  Well, it’s almost here, the lineups will be posted once they are available, here is everything you need to know up to this point.

April 1 2013 Preview


LET’S GO CUBS!!  Thanks for reading,
– George

Darwin Barney Out of Opener, Possibly Longer

Just when you thought spring training was over, and you no longer needed to worry about injuries before the regular season…BOOM!  BarneyIn a game that meant nothing against the Astros Darwin Barney made a diving attempt at a meaningless foul ball, and did his best Bill Mueller impersonation and slid into a meaningless wall, and sliced open his knee.  It was bad enough to require five stitches and is now out of the Cubs opening day lineup and depending on a doctor’s visit today, could be out even longer and require a DL visit.  Barney’s absence isn’t a huge hit to the lineup, but it is a ginormous hit to the defensive aspect of the Cubs game, as the defending gold glover will have to wait awhile to begin his defense (get it?), seems rather ridiculous that he was hurt when he probably shouldn’t have been playing, but hindsight is 20/20 I guess.  Well, that was worth it, eh Dale?  Brent Lillibridge will now get the start at second base on Monday in Pittsburgh, and will be in the same starting infield as Luis Valbuena.. sigh, here we go!

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Overachieving…In the Trainers Room

Spring training is a time to evaluate talent, see which players may have taken a step forward or backward, and to see what some of your young prospects can do against some major league talent.  The other thing the Spring is known for is injuries, and the number one thing that teams want to come out of spring with is health.  The Cubs are not doing that.  The troubling news Bakercoming out of camp today is that both Scott Baker and Ian Stewart will both start the season on the DL, that’s not so great, and I haven’t even approached the Matt Garza situation yet.  We’ll start with Baker, and the news is not good.  Baker, who is coming of Tommy John Surgery felt some discomfort in his elbow after his spring debut this weekend, this could be considered normal, but the Cubs wanted an MRI.  Baker got an MRI and has now been shut down indefinitely as there is some inflammation and fluid build up in the elbow, so you can throw that mid-April return date out the window.  Now on to Ian Stewart, he can’t run, like at all, he can’t do it.  You need to be able to run in baseball, I mean, usually you do, and right now Stewart can’t do it because of a quad injury.  So what does this mean?  Well, the Cubs were prepared to start 2013 without Baker, so they will make do somehow with their increased starting depth, Samardzija, Garza (healthy?), Jackson, Wood, Feldman could be your rotation heading into opening day.  As far as third base goes it looks like Brent Lillibridge is now a lock to make the team, and he will back up starting third baseman Luis Valbuena, gently weep if you feel the need to.  Here are some quotes today that Brett had up on his site at Bleacher Nation

Per Carrie Muskat

“Cubs pitcher Scott Baker had a setback, and his throwing program has been suspended indefinitely. Baker felt some discomfort in his right elbow after his first Cactus League start on [Sunday] and underwent an MRI on Monday. The results of the test were not released, and Baker was to be examined by team orthopedic specialist Dr. Stephen Gryzlo this weekend. There’s no timetable for Baker’s return and the extent of the injury is not known.” 

Per Paul Sullivan

“I can hit and take grounders,” he said. “I just can’t run.”

Stewart said “it doesn’t feel like” it’s been healing, despite the prolonged rest this spring. Stewart will meet with manager Dale Sveum and the training staff this morning to assess his status.

“I know what it’s like to play through pain,” Stewart said. “That’s what’s hard about this. I can’t get through that pain and play with it. It’s just too much.”

Well, shoot.

Thanks for reading,
– George

March 18, 2013 Lineup vs. Padres

Edwin Jackson will make the start today for the Cubs against the Padres and look to get stretched out a little bit more as we are now just two weeks away from opening day.  Here is how the Cubs will line up today, and be still my heart, Soler hitting three and Baez hitting four…. ah, the future looks bright.

Sappelt CF
McDonald LF
Soler RF
Baez SS
Clevenger C
Maysonet 3B
Lillibridge 1B
Gonzalez 2B
E. Jackson P

Thanks for reading,
– George

A Collection Of Javier Baez Home Runs From Spring Training (VIDEO)

He’s exciting, he won’t be at Wrigley on opening day, this year, but it’s hard not to get excited about Javier Baez and what he is doing this Spring.  I’ve seen the kid play in person, and video doesn’t do this kid justice, he’s exciting, he’s confident, and above all else he is a ballplayer.  I really like seeing fan videos, something about a different angle, the crowds reaction, the sound of the ball off the bat, makes you feel like you are there, so enjoy.

Javier Baez Walk-Off Against Japan, Multiple Shots:

Javier Baez’s First HR vs Team Japan

Both of Javier Baez’s HR’s from yesterday’s game vs Royals

Here’s a link to the MLB.com video of both home runs

Thanks for reading, and watching,
– George