Alcides Escobar got into Eddie Butler‘s first offering and yanked it foul. Then he blasted the second pitch he saw over the wall in left-center. From that point on, the Ed Sheeran lookalike pitching for the Cubs was seeing fire from his castle on the hill. Even after retiring the next five Royals he faced, Butler was still ready to serve up justice.
You know how they say that when you get locked up, you need to pick out the biggest dude in the yard and go after him to prove you’re not a punk? Well, dudes don’t come much bigger than Jorge Soler. Eager to prove his worth to his new teammates, Butler went right after one of their old teammates.
Okay, so it wasn’t really like that. I mean, Butler did cut loose a fastball that rode in and caught Soler in the shoulder. The location wasn’t great, but it was nice to see the 94 mph velo just the same. I’m betting the big Cuban will be moving extra gingerly after taking that heater to arm from a red-haired guy.
The Cubs’ offense today came pretty much exclusively from role players and prospects, as Chris Dominguez, Eloy Jimenez, Jacob Hannemann, Chesny Young, and Carlos Corporan all knocked in runs. Victor Caratini joined the party with three hits and continues to build his profile as a very solid catcher.
Following Butler on the mound was Ryan Williams, an under-the-radar bulldog who has excelled at pretty much every level of the minors and could find himself with a bigger role in Chicago before too long.
More happened, but I’m not going to write about it. Please forgive me. Actually, you really shouldn’t be upset with me about not going into more detail on this one.
Stats that matter
- Cubs notched 12 hits, allowed only 4
- Caratini went 3-for-4
- Butler threw only 21 pitches, induced four ground-outs
With only three or four regulars in the lineup, there isn’t much to take away from this game. No more than we can take away from one of Team Canada’s WBC pitchers allowing an opp bomb to a member of the Cubs’ front office, anyway.
Rob Zastryzny makes his second exhibition start and the hope is that he doesn’t tire early as the Cubs take on the Reds in Goodyear.