Another packed house at Hohokam Stadium today, 12, 837, only 69 short of the Cactus League single-game record set by the Cubs at Hohokam last season. The Cubs lost to the LA Angels of Disneyland, 6-5. Six of the Cubs’ last seven spring games were decided by 2 or fewer runs. We had the Northern Illinois University Alumni Association at the ballpark today and had a moment of silence before the start of today’s game to honor the victims of the shooting that occurred at NIU.
Game notes: Ryan Dempster started today and had a rough go of it after a quick 1-2-3 first inning he gave up 6 runs on 5 hits, walking 2, before being pulled in the 2nd inning. Dempster also had a throwing error on a swinging bunt by Casey Kotchman in the 2nd. Today is not going to help Dempster’s cause in his fight for a spot in the starting rotation, especially after the outstanding 4 innings of shutout ball pitched today by Jon Lieber. Lieber allowed only two hits and also struck the side in the 7th. Kerry Wood set down the Angels in order in the 4th inning. Michael Wuertz relieved Dempster in the 2nd, allowing only 1 hit while striking out 4 in his 1.1 innings.
Today at bp, later Lee and Blanco would have 3 of the Cubs extra base hits.
With the bats, Derrek Lee pounded the ball, finishing 2 for 4 with a double and a triple. Alfonso Soriano had an RBI double in the 1st, but also struck out twice. Henry Blanco hit his 1st spring HR. Eric Patterson, starting today in CF, was 2 for 4, and had a stolen base. However, Patterson was caught stealing in the 9th for out #2 (he was the tying run), Josh Kroeger ended the game striking out. The consensus in my booth, was that Patterson was safe at 2nd, but the umpire didn’t agree.
Aramis Ramirez made an outstanding, diving snag of a Maicer Izturis hard grounder in the 4th. Very frightening moment, a screaming foul ball off the bat of Mark DeRosa hit Cubs Alex Cintron viciously in the face while he was standing in the batting circle. Cintron fell immediately to the ground, was taken to the hospital for x-rays, right now they’re saying he’s day to day and treating him for swelling. Fukudome faked a steal in the 1st inning, only to have Angels catcher Mike Napoli throw down to 2nd, problem was there wasn’t anyone to take the throw. The ball sailed onto the Centerfielder, allowing Dome to take 2nd
Ryan Theriot and Denny Terrio related?
The Angels had two #65’s in the game at the same time today- always fun for the public address announcer. The iron Hoff-power plays again- Micah Hoffpauir has played everyday of the Cubs Cactus League schedule this spring. The Cubs wives held their annual food drive to benefit Mesa’s Paz de Cristo today.
The Cubs travel to Tucson tomorrow to take on the White Sox, the game is on WGN TV with those “other” announcers.