I mentioned yesterday on Twitter that I was looking forward to watching the game and following Matt Garza rumors on Twitter. The Cubs continued their run of playing semi-decent baseball and made my night an enjoyable one.
- Before the game, the Cubs called up Junior Lake to take the place of injured outfielder, Brian Bogusevic, who was placed on the DL. I was a believer in Lake going into the season and was really hoping he’d make the opening day roster. Unfortunately an injury knocked him out of contention and forced him to start the season on the DL. Since then, he’s put up respectable numbers in Iowa and earned the call up. To say he made the most of his first opportunity is an understatement. The first pitch he saw, he drilled down the left field line for a double and then stole third on the very next pitch. He would finish the day with a 3-for-4 performance and high praise from his manager “Since I’ve been here, that’s the first kid that’s come up and looked like a major leaguer, aggressive, aggressive on the bases…He did a great job and swung the bat really nice.” While he got the start in CF, I’d expect him to also get some time at 3B and push Luis Valbuena.
- Jeff Samardzija, who was coming off a less than ideal start in his last outing against the Angels, turned in a really nice performance. Nevermind that he left the game in a little bit of a jam in the 8th inning, the game overall was a nice one. To be honest, I’m not quite sure what to do with Samardzija. I think he needs to be part of the future of this team, but I honestly have no clue what his value is and where he slots in this rotation. There are days when he can be absolutely unhittable and has the potential to throw deep into a game. Then there are days when he looks average at best. I hold to the fact that he is continuing to learn and develop, but I worry about the price he is going to command when he gets to the open market.
- Trade rumors continue to be all the buzz around this team. Yesterday it seemed that Garza was as good as gone and that we could see it announced sometime before or during the game. That obviously did not happen and word out of Texas is that something caused a snag and that now the deal is on hold. It’s hard to know what to believe. If you believe Jim Bowden, who apparently doesn’t check on the accuracy of his sources and then deletes the tweet to avoid embarrassment, then the deal will get done. I don’t really know what to believe. Ultimately, I think a move will be made today. You don’t get that close to a deal and then just shut down talks. If the deal is with Texas or not, we’ll just have to wait and see. It should be an interesting weekend of Twitter rumors. With that being said, I asked followers on Twitter last night how many players on the current 40 man roster they felt will be moved before September 1. I got a lot of replies to that. My prediction is 3. I think it will be Garza, Dioner Navarro, and Alfonso Soriano. While I think there is definite interest in guys like Kevin Gregg and James Russell, I think they will remain. It’s easy to predict things like 10 or 12 and rustle up every name you can think of, but when it comes down to it, teams just don’t make that many deals.
MINOR LEAGUE NOTES
Josh Vitters returned to the lineup for Iowa and hit home run # 4 on the season as part of a 2-for-4 night in a losing effort against Round Rock
Dae-Eun Rhee got his first start for AA since coming off the DL and went 3.2 innings, allowing a pair of home runs. Javier Baez contributed to the offense with his fourth home run since being promoted and 21st overall this season, but it would be Arismendy Alcantara who would double home the winning run in the 10th.
Scott Baker made his second rehab start in his quest to return to the Cubs rotation sometime in August and it was less than desirable. Baker allowed six runs on six hits over 2.2 innings while walking three and striking out one for the Kane County Cougars. Dan Vogelbach was 2-for-4 in the game with a run scored.
TWEET OF THE NIGHT
Love that trades can be "99% done" and then fall apart because people can't agree on who's in the deal. Seems that's in the first 99%, no?
— Craig Calcaterra (@craigcalcaterra) July 20, 2013