The Cubs lost to the Brewers at Hohokam today, 10-6 in 10 innings in front of 9,977. The Cubs plated 2 runs in the 9th to tie the game at 6, then brought in Jose Ascanio to pitch the 10th. Ascanio surrendered 4 runs, including a tie-breaking pinch hit HR by Brewers Gabe Gross. By the end of this 3 hour and 37 minute game, less than 3,000 of the nearly 10,000 fans remained, by my estimate.
Kosuke Fukudome, batting in the #2 spot for the first time this spring, went 3 for 3 at the plate, including his first spring round-tripper. Dome also made a nice catch in the 4th inning on the warning track. Geovany Soto had a good game, driving in 2 runs on a 3rd inning double and got on base 2 more times with walks. He also had a nice running grab on a pop up behind the plate.
Ryan Dempster making his 2nd start of the spring, had a rough first inning: walking 2 batters along with beaning a Brewer, but only allowed 1 run on 1 hit in the inning. In the 2nd, he allowed a lead-off triple to Tony Gwynn who was left stranded as Dempster got the next 3 outs. By the 3rd inning Dempster had settled down, and had an easy 1,2,3 inning. Sean Gallagher was touched for 3 runs in 2 innings, including 2 HR’s. Kerry Wood had a 1,2,3 inning in the 6th. Kevin Hart struck out 3 of his 4 batters in the 9th.
It was good to see Mark DeRosa back and in good spirits after his medical procedure. Today was the 2nd time this spring I’ve bumped into legendary Cubs clubhouse manager Yosh Kawano, out on Center Street. Fukudome’s interpreter, Ryuji Araki, was shagging some fly balls during BP. I know that guy is in good shape by watching him run from field to field at Fitch Park, following Fukudome around practice. Eric Patterson was standing on the top of the dugout steps before the game, signing autographs on anything the fans tossed him.
The guys in the next room who run the music, accidentally blared the first few notes to Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer out over the PA during Ryan Braun’s at-bat against Dempster. Dempster must have been able to “name that tune” even if it was subliminally, because he proceeded to nail Braun with the pitch. Ivan DeJesus has been filling in as first base coach for Matt Sinatro, who’s recovering from knee surgery. Today, Sinatro brought out the starting lineups to the umpires before the game.
A heavy mood lay over many Brewers fans today, and it’s gonna take more than a beer, a brat, and a spring training victory to bring them out of the Brett Favre retirement funk. I was happy to add to their mood by reminding them in my introduction of the Cubs being Central Division Champions.
Mark DeRosa (far right) today during bp.