View From The Bleachers

Talking Cubs Baseball Since 2003

Thursday

6

June 2013

46

COMMENTS

Game 57 – Extra Inning Excitement

Written by , Posted in General

Cubs 8, Angels 6

Box Score / Highlights

Like Jedi, this two-game series in Anaheim was my first chance to see the 2013 Cubs in person. And while you tend to miss a lot of the game when your group includes four children under the age of four, here’s a few things I walked away with from the Cubs’ extra innings win over the Angels.

Anthony Rizzo is a cool guy; he’s trying to help you. Prior to his single in the ninth inning, Anthony Rizzo had grounded out to first in each of his four at-bats. That’s the kind of night that can get into a hitter’s head; the kind of night that makes him start pressing in the wrong places and squandering late-inning opportunities. But not Rizzo. He came up in the tenth inning with the bases loaded and two outs–the exact kind of game-changing situation so many other Cubs’ sluggers have disappeared in in the past. Instead, Rizzo offered up the biggest hit of the night–a bases-clearing double to right, breaking the tie and giving the Cubs a protect-able cushion for the bottom of the tenth. Put it this way: a lot of hitters can inspire hope. Rizzo inspires confidence. In that situation there’s no one I would have rather step up to the plate (at least while Castro’s mojo is still AWOL).

Viva la Garza. I’ve been in the less-than-optimistic camp when it comes to Matt Garza’s return to form, but he seems to be doing well so far. Wednesday wasn’t the best performance I’ve seen from him, but it was better than serviceable, and therefore, better than what I expected. (Also in the better-than-expected camp: Ryan Sweeney.)

Trumbo in paradise. Much has been said already this season about the Angels’ high-priced roster of underperforming sluggers. What looks on paper to be a partial All-Star lineup has fallen far short of expectations, and I wouldn’t be surprised to see a shakeup in the near future. One name that should be in demand is Mark Trumbo. On several other teams, he’d be one of the marquee players. For the Angels he fades into the background, despite his performance. Wednesday night he went 2-for-4 with two homers, driving in a third of Anaheim’s runs for the game and looking every bit the top-shelf hitting talent his teammates are paid to be. With a surplus of OFs and 1Bs who can hit, expect the Angels to shop Trumbo. And if Wednesday night was any indication, expect him to have several suitors.

If I could reach you, I would hit you. I cannot bring myself to trust Kevin Gregg with the baseball in his hands. Even if he’s been one of the Cubs’ most consistent relievers this season, he doesn’t inspire confidence when you watch him on the mound. In fact, he inspires the opposite of confidence. It’s an intense, concentrated worry; like the inescapable  feeling your bladder is about to explode, and you’re a great distance from shelter and a fresh pair of pants. And it’s all compounded by the still-vivid memories of his first, disastrous go-round with the Cubs. Gregg received the win for Wednesday’s effort, but the terminology is deceptive. He outlasted the Angels. Or better still: his ineptitude was overcome by theirs. (On a side note, I hit up the Portillo’s in Buena Park on the way home last night, along with what seemed to be most of the Cubs fans who attended the game. Amidst the crowd was a mildly jubilant, less-mildly drunk Cubs fan who was complaining about our shaky bullpen. He wanted me to know he was pleased we survived an inning of Marmol, even though Marmol never took the mound Wednesday. So I guess congratulations are in order for Hector Rondon, who it seems is officially the drunk man’s Carlos Marmol.)

Trip advisor. Since Southern California is a vacation destination, and there’s a good possibility that some readers might be heading out this way in the coming months, I want to give you a brief heads-up on the baseball situation in the greater LA area. Unless you’re a fan of rampant profanity, territorial aggression, drunken brawls, and a general lack of safety, I’d encourage you to skip Dodger Stadium altogether and instead head down to Angel Stadium. Seriously, the Anaheim crowd is friendly, peaceful, and into the game. None of that seems like an achievement until you’ve visited Dodger Stadium. But I strongly suggest you don’t.

  • I think I’ve already decided that if I were in LA, I would not go to Dodger Stadium. I’d rather not be beaten to the point of severe brain damage for supporting the “wrong” team.

    I’d also like to apologize for my emotional comment yesterday. It’s just frustrating when you’re not being heard. Maybe the Cubs brass should listen more to fans while “rebuilding”, and actually try to take care of whatever legitimate complaints we have.

    Rondon was confused by a drunk for Marmol? He’s not that bad, is he?

  • I think I’ve already decided that if I were in LA, I would not go to Dodger Stadium. I’d rather not be beaten to the point of severe brain damage for supporting the “wrong” team.

    I’d also like to apologize for my emotional comment yesterday. It’s just frustrating when you’re not being heard. Maybe the Cubs brass should listen more to fans while “rebuilding”, and actually try to take care of whatever legitimate complaints we have.

    Rondon was confused by a drunk for Marmol? He’s not that bad, is he?

  • BLPCB

    I plan to visit all 30 parks in my lifetime. Including Dodger Stadium. I’ll just wear my Lakers hat and shirt when I go to hide that I’m a Cubs fan. But that is a long time away. Because when I visit Southern California, I plan to make it a baseball trip, as well as all the theme parks (Disney, Universal, Seaworld)

    • Be sure not to wear a Six Flags shirt to Disney. They’ll tear you to pieces.

      • BLPCB

        I was thinking about wearing Simpsons shirts that I intend to buy at the Kwik-E-Mart when I visit Universal.

      • That is definitely a solid option. Just to be on the safe side, you should come up with a few coats for your potential Universal visit, and stick together a few pants /vs/ shorts potential wardrobes. Turtlenecks may be in style in the future, so you should plan accordingly.

  • AC0000000

    I plan to visit all 30 parks in my lifetime. Including Dodger Stadium. I’ll just wear my Lakers hat and shirt when I go to hide that I’m a Cubs fan. But that is a long time away. Because when I visit Southern California, I plan to make it a baseball trip, as well as all the theme parks (Disney, Universal, Seaworld)

    • Be sure not to wear a Six Flags shirt to Disney. They’ll tear you to pieces.

      • AC0000000

        I was thinking about wearing Simpsons shirts that I intend to buy at the Kwik-E-Mart when I visit Universal.

      • That is definitely a solid option. Just to be on the safe side, you should come up with a few coats for your potential Universal visit, and stick together a few pants /vs/ shorts potential wardrobes. Turtlenecks may be in style in the future, so you should plan accordingly.

  • Doug S.

    Really great racing to the box score this morning to find out who the Cubs hero was and not the goat.

    Been to both LA area ballparks, Dodger (x4) Angels (x1) – Not in love with the location of either. Have not experienced any problems during those visits, nor drunker, louder or ruder people than most parks. Once you get past the tough on the eye, puke yellow colored seats at Dodger, it’s OK. Dodger is where I’ve paid the most for a ballpark beer at $12.50, but it was a big one.

  • Doug S.

    Really great racing to the box score this morning to find out who the Cubs hero was and not the goat.

    Been to both LA area ballparks, Dodger (x4) Angels (x1) – Not in love with the location of either. Have not experienced any problems during those visits, nor drunker, louder or ruder people than most parks. Once you get past the tough on the eye, puke yellow colored seats at Dodger, it’s OK. Dodger is where I’ve paid the most for a ballpark beer at $12.50, but it was a big one.

  • Eddie Von White

    If I can’t reach you, I will find a way so I can hit you.

    Our household slept with big smiles on our faces last night after Rizzo’s heroics.

    Been to about 8 different ballparks, including Dodger Stadium, and I can’t tell the difference between the fans. Even the drunk ones are hospitable and decent to us Cubs fans. Most of them express sympathy.

    • BLPCB

      “Most of them express sympathy.”
      That’s how the Boston fans are to us, even after we got their GM

  • Eddie Von White

    If I can’t reach you, I will find a way so I can hit you.

    Our household slept with big smiles on our faces last night after Rizzo’s heroics.

    Been to about 8 different ballparks, including Dodger Stadium, and I can’t tell the difference between the fans. Even the drunk ones are hospitable and decent to us Cubs fans. Most of them express sympathy.

    • AC0000000

      “Most of them express sympathy.”
      That’s how the Boston fans are to us, even after we got their GM

  • BLPCB

    Jeremiah and Jedi – Is Dodger Stadium in a rough part of L.A. or is Chavez Ravine safe to hang out before/after the game?

    • Jedi

      Haha, no – not safe. It’s the anti-Wrigleyville. Plus there’s really nothing to do, it’s just a giant parking lot.

      • BLPCB

        Sounds like the United Center almost. You don’t want to be there unless it’s gameday

      • Jeremiah Johnson

        I’ve been to the United Center. Dodger Stadium is less hospitable.

      • BLPCB

        Well when you consider the kind of people that are going to Bulls and Hawks games, it’s understandable. What I meant was you don’t want to be hanging around that area when it’s not gameday because then it’s kind of sketchy. I went a few times to buy tickets for games. Never again. If I need to buy a ticket in advance these days at the UC, I do it on gameday.

      • Jedi

        I think only the Black Hole at a Raider game would be less hospitable than Dodger Stadium.

      • Doug S.

        The Raider Black Hole must be rock bottom on the hospitable scale.

  • AC0000000

    Jeremiah and Jedi – Is Dodger Stadium in a rough part of L.A. or is Chavez Ravine safe to hang out before/after the game?

    • Jedi

      Haha, no – not safe. It’s the anti-Wrigleyville. Plus there’s really nothing to do, it’s just a giant parking lot.

      • AC0000000

        Sounds like the United Center almost. You don’t want to be there unless it’s gameday

      • Jeremiah Johnson

        I’ve been to the United Center. Dodger Stadium is less hospitable.

      • AC0000000

        Well when you consider the kind of people that are going to Bulls and Hawks games, it’s understandable. What I meant was you don’t want to be hanging around that area when it’s not gameday because then it’s kind of sketchy. I went a few times to buy tickets for games. Never again. If I need to buy a ticket in advance these days at the UC, I do it on gameday.

        And when I was a kid, my dad never wanted to take me to a Bulls game because the area was so run down. Even after Jordan retired and tickets were cheap

      • Jedi

        I think only the Black Hole at a Raider game would be less hospitable than Dodger Stadium.

      • Doug S.

        The Raider Black Hole must be rock bottom on the hospitable scale.

  • Chuck

    It is difficult to engender any sort animosity and rancor in opposing fanbases (Cardinals fans aside) when you have not won anything meaningful since the advent of the automobile.

    • BLPCB

      Even Cardinals fans have a sliver of sorrow for us. There is one fanbase that fits what you said about the Cardinals though, Chuck.

  • Chuck

    It is difficult to engender any sort animosity and rancor in opposing fanbases (Cardinals fans aside) when you have not won anything meaningful since the advent of the automobile.

    • AC0000000

      Even Cardinals fans have a sliver of sorrow for us. There is one fanbase that fits what you said about the Cardinals though, Chuck.

  • Seymour Butts

    I’ve been to LA once for a wedding. My issue is that in a 45 minute drive from the airport to the hotel (15 yrs ago), I did not see any patch of ground that had grass on it. Concrete, asphalt, and buildings. It’s all yours.

    • The Subway at Redondo is alone worth a return visit. They really hook up the veggies.

      • BLPCB

        What about the ranch dressing and sodium laced meats?

      • Cap’n Obvious

        My home Subway! Bask in the glow of its magnificence. And a Portillo’s in Buena Park…

  • Seymour Butts

    I’ve been to LA once for a wedding. My issue is that in a 45 minute drive from the airport to the hotel (15 yrs ago), I did not see any patch of ground that had grass on it. Concrete, asphalt, and buildings. It’s all yours.

    • The Subway at Redondo is alone worth a return visit. They really hook up the veggies.

      • AC0000000

        What about the ranch dressing and sodium laced meats?

      • Cap’n Obvious

        My home Subway! Bask in the glow of its magnificence. And a Portillo’s in Buena Park…

  • Doc Raker

    I was at the game also. Some observations I made.

    1) Garza labored. After a 6 pitch 1st inning he hit 100 pitches before the 6th inning, he did not have command of his pitches.

    2) Rizzo didn’t look comfortable verse the lefties but once he saw pitches from the righties he got his mojo going.

    3) Barney looked overmatched at the plate.

    4) Gregg looked in command. The bomb he gave up to Trumbo was acceptable since it was with a three run lead with 1 out in the 9th it was time to just challenge the hitter. He challenged Trumbo and got beat but closed the game out regardless. He painted the corners on Trout and then got him to fish.

    5) I always learn so much about sailing when attending an Angel game. I just sit in the box seats and listen to all the Angel season ticket holders talk about their sail boats and their real estate deal in escrow. I teach Angel fan the cup game, mound ball and the outfield game and they teach me about LIBOR rates and marina dock rates (Newport Beach dock rates are much higher than Long Beach dock rates I have learned).

    • Cap’n Obvious

      Redondo Dock rates are up as well. My people are recommending San Pedro.

  • Doc Raker

    I was at the game also. Some observations I made.

    1) Garza labored. After a 6 pitch 1st inning he hit 100 pitches before the 6th inning, he did not have command of his pitches.

    2) Rizzo didn’t look comfortable verse the lefties but once he saw pitches from the righties he got his mojo going.

    3) Barney looked overmatched at the plate.

    4) Gregg looked in command. The bomb he gave up to Trumbo was acceptable since it was with a three run lead with 1 out in the 9th it was time to just challenge the hitter. He challenged Trumbo and got beat but closed the game out regardless. He painted the corners on Trout and then got him to fish.

    5) I always learn so much about sailing when attending an Angel game. I just sit in the box seats and listen to all the Angel season ticket holders talk about their sail boats and their real estate deal in escrow. I teach Angel fan the cup game, mound ball and the outfield game and they teach me about LIBOR rates and marina dock rates (Newport Beach dock rates are much higher than Long Beach dock rates I have learned).

    • Cap’n Obvious

      Redondo Dock rates are up as well. My people are recommending San Pedro.