March 7, 2013 – Cubs Lineup vs. White Sox

Always want to beat the White Sox, even if it doesn’t count.  Here is how the Cubs will start things off today, the White Sox will use the DH, the Cubs will not, and the Sox had to get permission to do so from the Cubs, Spring Training folks.

1. David DeJesus, CF
2. Darwin Barney, 2B
3. Nate Schierholtz, RF
4. Alfonso Soriano, LF
5. Luis Valbuena, 3B
6. Welington Castillo, C
7. Brad Nelson, 1B
8. Edwin Maysonet, SS
9. Carlos Villanueva, P

Thanks for reading,
– George

March 5, 2013 – Cubs Lineup vs. Rockies

Yes, Mother Nature is dumping 10″ of snow on my current location, and beating up Chicagoland, but there is baseball to be played, here is how the Cubs will start things off today against the Rockies in Cactus League action.

Sappelt CF
Barney 2B
Castillo C
Schierholtz RF
Lake 3B
Bogusevic 1B
Maysonet SS
Szczur LF
Feldman P

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Season Tickets Have Been Printed, and They Are…..Awesome.

Cubs Season Ticket Cards

Baseball is an “old school” sport, meaning there is a lot of tradition, and usually teams do a solid job of recognizing that tradition.  Obviously the Cubs are one of them, they play in Wrigley, they play during the day, there is an old school feeling to everything that happens at Wrigley.  Well the Cubs, and the people at Topps have captured that feeling this year with the Cubs season tickets, they are top-notch.  Not only do season tickets get these awesome looking tickets, they get baseball cards from Topps as well (pictured above).  Colin Faulkner tweeted out a picture of one of the cards that will be going out (pictured above), yes please.  Darren Rovell tweeted out some examples of the tickets (pictures below), which was brought to my attention by my buddy Sarah Spain.  Enjoy.

Cubs Season Tickets 1Cubs Season Tickets 2

 

Thanks for reading,
– George

Shark Warning Issued For April 1st in Pittsburgh

Jeff Samardzija Opening Day Starter

The Cubs, or Dale Sveum have officially named Jeff Samardzija the opening day starter for the 2013 season.  Sure it’s only game one of one sixty-two, but it’s an accomplishment, especially for Samardzija, who just a couple of years ago was struggling out of the bullpen.  Here is what Sveum had to say about Samardzija, “He’s a guy who players rally around because of his work ethic, his bulldog mentality when he’s on the mound,” Sveum said Sunday. “It’s a very obvious choice, really, he’s that guy — it’s game on when he’s pitching that day,” Sveum said. “The other four days, he’s a starting pitcher who doesn’t sit around for four days. He’s into every game, and picking his teammates up.  He’s fallen into that leadership role as well.”  Some high praise from Sveum right there, and this could be a huge year for Shark as he has the chance to take a big step forward as the ace of this Cubs staff for not only this year, but years to come, he’ll also get paid for it too as his contract needs to be extended after the year.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs Shut Down Garza

There are many reasons that teams need starting pitching depth, this would be one of those reasons.  Matt Garza, the clear number one or two on the Cubs staff is being shut down by the Cubs because of his lingering lat injury.  Garza had been progressing nicely until Saturday when he was supposed to amp up the intensity in his throwing program.  Matt Garza ShockedWhen he did that, he didn’t feel right, and the Cubs pulled the plug.  The word out of Cubs camp is that Garza will be shut down for a week, and could miss up to a month which all but guarantees the right hander will start the 2013 season on the 15-day DL.  As expected, Garza, who wears his emotions on his sleeve, was none to happy about the setback, “He’s pretty down about it,” Sveum said. “He was obviously looking forward to it going well, and it didn’t go so well. He’s pretty down right now about it.”  To be clear, the injury hasn’t gotten worse, it just wont calm down enough for Garza to move forward.  “It’s just to the point where he’s just not ready to throw a baseball yet,” Sveum said. “It’s not torn or real bad. It’s just not quite ready to throw. It’s not a setback, it didn’t get worse, it’s just not ready — it’s like an evaluation process. Obviously, the evaluation was that he’s not ready to step up any extra intensity throwing.”  Hopefully this additional week of rest does a World of good for Garza and he’s able to return quickly, in the meantime the Cubs will lean on the pitching depth they built during the off-season.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Late Cubs Rally Falls Short

Cactus League Header

Cubs-Giants Line Score 3-2-13

Full Box Score

  Every time the Cubs fought back in this one the Giants would tack on a couple of insurance runs to keep the Cubs at bay, the Cubs final push came in the ninth inning as they scored twice, but ran MLB: Spring Training-Chicago Cubs at San Francisco Giantsout of outs as they fell to the Giants 9-7.  Carlos Villanueva made his second appearance of the Spring, and had a much better performance.  Villanueva was able to make it through three innings, giving up one run on four hits while walking one, and striking out two.  It was nice to see Villanueva find the strike zone repeatedly in this one, I’ll take giving up hits over walks any day, and he was able to work around the hits for the most part.  Barret Loux came on in relief and didn’t have it today, he tossed two innings, giving up four runs, all earned on three hits while walking one and striking out one, Loux was hung with the loss.  Jaye Chapman also struggled today as he surrendered two runs on two hits in his inning of work.  After having a rough Spring debut, Robert Whitenack bounced back nicely today as he pitched a scoreless inning, walking one and striking out one.

  The Cubs were once again productive at the plate as they scored seven runs while pounding out ten hits.  Brian Bogusevic got the start in right field today and was stellar at the plate going 2-for-2 with a triple, a walk, and two runs scored.  Dioner Navarro only had one hit but he had a productive day, he ended the day 1-for-3 with a walk, and two RBI’s.  Steve Clevenger got the start at first base today, yes first base, and he did his best Anthony Rizzo impersonation going 2-for-3 with two RBI’s, Clevenger is having a solid Spring at the plate, hitting .500 (4-for-8) in the early going.  Brett Jackson didn’t start, but had an eventful day nonetheless going 1-for-1 with a double, and a stolen base.  Jackson is having a resurgent Spring, and a lot of that can be contributed to a new swing, and new-found confidence, he his slated to start 2013 in Iowa, but is doing everything he can to make that decision anything but a given, he’s hitting .375 (3-for-8) with two triples, and a double this Spring.

Cubs-Giants box Score 3-2-13

Cubs-Giants Pitching Box Score 3-2-13

Thanks for reading,
– George

Walk This Way; Cubs Hand Game to D-Backs Behind Eight Walks

Cactus League Header

Cubs-Dbacks Line Score 3-1-13

Full Box Score

  On the surface it looks as though the Cubs staff struggled as a whole today, but that really wasn’t the case.  Jeff Samardzija got the start and turned in the longest outing of any Cubs pitcher so far, tossing three innings giving up one run on one hit, while walking three and striking out one.  It could have been much worse but Shark wiggled off the hook in the second after loading the bases with no outs.  MLB: Spring Training-Arizona Diamondbacks at Chicago CubsObviously he didn’t have his best command as illustrated by the three walks, but he battled, and he wasn’t the only one that struggled with command today.  Michael Bowden walked two in his inning of work, and Rafael Dolis imploded, walking three in a third of an inning while giving up four runs, three earned, on just one hit.  Cory Wade, Blake Parker, James Russell, Casey Coleman, and Shawn Camp all had scoreless appearances.

  The Cubs were able to plate two runs in the first inning off of Trevor Cahill, but that is all they would get in this one.  Anthony Rizzo continued his strong spring going 2-for-3 with a double, and an RBI, he’s now hitting .364 (4-for-11) in the Cactus League.  Luis Valbuena continues to make a strong case to be the starting third baseman going 1-for-2 with a run scored, he’s hitting a robust .571 (4-for-7) this Spring.  Jorge Soler had a solid day at the plate going 1-for-2 with a triple, it’s impressive to see a guy that big run that well.

Cubs-Dbacks Box Score 3-1-13

Cubs-Dbacks Pitching Box Score 3-1-13

Thanks for reading,
– George