Despite a weekend’s worth of games in the Caribbean, only a few Cubs participated in the action. Jonathan Mota had the most notable three-day stretch in Puerto Rico. Here are some notes from the weekend’s action around the Caribbean.
Jonathan Mota, 2B/3B – Mota had a big Saturday, going 2-for-4 with a homer and a triple in a 3-1 loss. Batting third on Sunday, he drove in Ponce’s only run of the game again with a single. He finished 1-for-4.
Greg Rohan, 3B – Rohan finished 0-for-3 Saturday with a walk.
Rubi Silva, LF – Silva was hitless in three at-bats both Saturday and Sunday.
Eduardo Figueroa, RHP – Eduardo Figueroa pitched to one batter for La Guaira and retired him in the top of the ninth Saturday.
Luis Valbuena, 2B – Valbuena had a single Sunday for Lara but went 0-for-3 Saturday with a walk.
The Cubs announced their minor league coaching staffs for the 2014 season on Wednesday. Managers from Short-Season A Boise through Triple-A Iowa all remained the same, along with the hitting coaches at all levels. However, many of the managers will have new pitching coaches to work with this year. The staff is as follows. Bold designates new personnel at the position:
Manager: Marty Pevey
Pitching Coach: Bruce Walton
Hitting Coach: Brian Harper
Pevey begins his second season at Triple-A Iowa and his sixth in the Cubs organization. He was previously the catching coordinator for three seasons (2010-12). He was also the manager at Single-A Peoria in 2009. He has 30 years of professional experience, including 13 as a player, and was named the 2009 Midwest League co-Manager of the Year. Walton spent 2010-12 as the Blue Jays’ pitching coach and was previously their bullpen coach dating back to 2002. Harper returns for his second season after managing at Double-A Tennessee in 2011 and Single-A Daytona in 2012.
Manager: Buddy Bailey
Pitching Coach: Storm Davis
Hitting Coach/Assistant: Desi Wilson/Leo Perez
Bailey is back for his fourth season as Tennessee’s manager (third-straight). This marks his 26th season as a manager and his ninth in the Cubs organization. He previously spent three years as the manager of High-A Daytona. Davis spent 2013 with High-A Daytona as the pitching coach. It’s his second season in the organization, following a 13-year major league career. Wilson returns for his second year with Tennessee and sixth with the organization. He held the same position with Daytona in 2012.
Manager: Dave Keller
Pitching Coach: Ron Villone
Hitting Coach: Mariano Duncan
Keller is back for his second year with Daytona, after leading the D-Cubs to the Florida State League title last season. This will mark his 11th season with the organization. He spent 2012 as the hitting coach in Iowa and 2011 as an assistant on the major league staff. In his third season with the club, Villone jumps up from Single-A Kane County. He also had a 15-year major league career. Duncan returns for his second season after two campaigns with Double-A Tennessee (2011-12) as the hitting coach.
Single-A Kane County
Manager: Mark Johnson
Pitching Coach: David Rosario
Hitting Coach: Tom Beyers
Johnson returns for his second season with Kane County after serving as Short-Season Boise’s manager from 2011-12. He played professionally for 17 years, including time with the White Sox, Athletics, Brewers and Cardinals. Rosario has been the pitching coach at Boise for the three seasons, and this is his 10th overall campaign with the organization. Beyers has been with the Cubs for 14 seasons and returns for his second season with the Cougars.
Manager: Gary Van Tol
Pitching Coach: Brian Lawrence
Hitting Coach: Bill Buckner
Van Tol helped Boise secure a playoff spot in his first season in charge of the club and brings 21 years of coaching experience. He coached at Gonzaga (1991-93, 2006-08) and the University of Portland (2003-05). He was also the manager of Centralia Community College in Washington (1994) and Treasure Valley Community College (1997-2001). Lawrence spent last year in the Padres’ organization as a Single-A pitching coach. Prior to that, he had a six-year major league career with the Padres. Buckner returns for his third season with the club. He enjoyed a 22-year career as a player.
Rookie League Mesa
Manager: Jimmy Gonzalez
Pitching Coach: Anderson Tavares
Hitting Coach: Ricardo Medina
After serving as hitting coach last season, Gonzalez now steps in as manager. The former catcher played 14 minor league seasons after becoming a first-round pick in 1991. Tavarez is back for his second season in Mesa after spending six seasons as the pitching coach in the Dominican. Medina has been a coach, manager or scout with the Cubs since 1999.
Rookie League Dominican
Manager: Juan Cabreja
Pitching Coach: Leo Hernandez
Hitting Coach/Assistant: Oscar Bernard/Yudith Ozorio
Cabreja was the Latin America assistant field coordinator last year and managed the Dominican club in 2012. Hernandez will act as pitching coach in his 19th season with the Cubs, while Bernard will be the Dominican hitting coach for the second straight year.
Rookie League Venezuelan
Manager: Pedro Gonzalez
Pitching Coach: Angel Guzman
Hitting Coach: Franklin Blanco
Gonzalez begins his first season with the Venezuelan club, while Guzman, who spent four years with the Cubs from 2006-09, will serve as pitching coach. Blanco begins his eighth season with the organization.
Smokies pitcher Eduardo Figueroa returned to action in Venezuela, infield prospect Jonathan Mota contributed to his team in Puerto Rico, and Frank Batista picked up the win in Dominican play. Here are some notes from yesterday’s action around the Caribbean.
Frank Batista, RHP – Batista picked up the win, pitching 1.2 scoreless innings of relief for Cibaenas. He struck out one in his first victory of the winter.
Walter Ibarra, SS – Ibarra was hitless in four at-bats, striking out three times for Mazatlan.
Jonathan Mota, 3B – Mota blasted his first homer of the winter, driving in a pair. He finished 1-for-3 with a walk and a run scored in the Ponce loss.
Rubi Silva, CF – Silva went 1-for-4 with a single and a run scored Wednesday.
Greg Rohan, DH – Rohan finished 1-for-4 with a single for Ponce.
Eduardo Figueroa, RHP – Figueroa returned to action for the first time since Oct. 17, pitching a scoreless eighth inning, striking out one and allowing no hits for La Guaira.
Despite a full slate of games in the Dominican and Mexico, the Cubs didn’t have any representation in those leagues Tuesday. But a trio of farmhands got into the game for Ponce in Puerto Rico, and Luis Valbuena had a hit for his side in Venezuela. Here are some notes from Tuesday’s action around the Caribbean.
Jonathan Mota, 3B – Mota had a pair of singles and finished 2-for-4 in the Ponce win.
Greg Rohan, DH – Rohan was hitless in four at-bats Tuesday.
Rubi Silva, LF/CF – Silva went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts for Ponce.
Luis Valbuena, 2B – Valbuena recorded a single and a run scored, going 1-for-5 for Lara Tuesday.
All Caribbean leagues had the day off Monday, but plenty of games were played over the weekend. Luis Valbuena had three good games, and Jonathan Mota made his plate appearances count as well. Here are some notes from action around the Caribbean this weekend.
Frank Batista, RHP – Despite giving up no earned runs and allowing only one hit in two innings, Batista walked one batter, and he eventually came around to tie the game Saturday. It was the right-hander’s second blown save of the winter. He struck out three.
Alberto Cabrera, RHP – Cabrera had a rough outing Friday, going 0.1 innings, giving up two earned runs, walking one and striking out one.
Walter Ibarra, SS – Ibarra finished 1-for-4 Friday with a single for Mazatlan, and went 0-for-3 with a walk Saturday. On Sunday, he recorded a hit and scored a run.
Jonathan Mota, 3B/SS – Mota finished 2-for-4 Friday with a double and a run scored in the Ponce loss. He added another double and another run on Sunday.
Greg Rohan, 1B/DH – As DH on Sunday, Rohan went 1-for-2 with a single. He was hitless in four plate appearances Friday for Ponce.
Rubi Silva, LF – Silva recorded a single on Sunday, going 1-for-3. He didn’t get a hit Friday’s game however, finishing 0-for-4.
Yoanner Negrin, RHSP – In 5.1 innings, Negrin gave up two earned runs on seven hits and a walk, striking out three in the no-decision for Caracas.
Luis Valbuena, 2B – Valbuena had a double and two walks Friday, and he went 1-for-3 with two walks, an RBI and a run scored for Lara Saturday. He had his third double of the weekend Sunday and scored a run in the loss.
Carlos Pimentel, who continues to have a great winter, picked up another win in Dominican action Thursday night. Here are some other notes from Thursday’s action around the Caribbean leagues.
Frank Batista, RHP – Batista picked up his first save of the winter. He walked the first batter he faced, but retired the next to close out the Aguilas win.
Carlos Pimentel, RHSP – Pimentel (5-0) continued his strong winter effort, giving up three hits over six innings and surrendering just one earned run. He fanned three batters and walked one for Escogido.
Walter Ibarra, SS – Ibarra went 0-for-2 with a walk in Mazatlan’s loss Thursday.
Jonathan Mota, 3B – Mota went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts for Ponce.
Greg Rohan, DH – Rohan had a single, finishing 1-for-4 for Ponce.
Rubi Silva, LF – Silva went 0-for-4 with two strikeouts Thursday for Ponce. He’s still hitting .302, despite his shaky day.
Luis Valbuena, 2B – Valbuena finished 0-for-3 with a walk for Lara.
Over the last two days, plenty of players in the Cubs organization excelled in Caribbean League play. Cubs newcomer Carlos Pimentel picked up a win Wednesday in the Dominican, Walter Ibarra made an impact, and Luis Valbuena contributed in a double-header. Here are some other stat lines from action around the winter leagues.
Frank Batista, RHP – Batista pitched a scoreless eighth inning for Cibaenas Wednesday, giving up no hits.
Junior Lake, LF – On Wednesday, Lake had an RBI triple and a run scored for Estrellas. On Thursday, he finished 1-for-4 with a single.
Carlos Pimentel, RHSP – Pimentel continued a solid winter run, improving to 4-0 with a dominant effort for Escogido Wednesday. He pitched six scoreless innings, striking out seven, giving up two hits and walking one. The 24-year-old signed a minor league deal with the Cubs after spending 2013 with the Rangers.
Walter Ibarra, SS – Ibarra went 1-for-3 with a double Wednesday for Mazatlan. He also added a run scored. He continued his hitting ways with an RBI double on Thursday, driving in the Venados’ only run.
Jonathan Mota, 3B – On Wednesday, Mota recorded a single in three at-bats.
Rubi Silva, CF – Silva was hitless in four at-bats for Ponce, striking out three times Wednesday.
Yoanner Negrin, RHSP – Negrin pitched 4.2 innings, giving up two earned runs on six hits and a walk Wednesday, earning the loss for Caracas. He struck out one.
Hector Rondon, RHP – Rondon had a rough inning of work, giving up two runs on three hits in a Caracas win Thursday. He had one strikeout.
Luis Valbuena, 2B – Valbuena went 1-for-4 with a single Thursday in the first game of a double-header for Lara. In Game Two, he went 2-for-4 with a walk and two runs scored.
The Venezuelan league had the day off Tuesday, but Junior Lake delivered a three-hit performance for his side in the Dominican. Here are some results from yesterday’s action in the Caribbean.
Junior Lake, LF – Lake bounced back from a four-strikeout afternoon Monday to go 3-for-4 Tuesday with a double and an RBI. Estrellas fell 4-3.
Walter Ibarra, SS – Ibarra had a hit and drew a walk for Mazatlan Tuesday. The 25-year-old hit .276 in 58 games of combined Double- and Triple-A ball for the Yankees last year.
Jonathan Mota, 3B – Mota went 1-for-4 with a run scored for Ponce in a 9-3 win.
The Venezuelan league’s one scheduled game was rained out, and the Mexican league had the day off Monday. Aside from Marcos Mateo earning his third save in four days, there weren’t many Cubs highlights in the Caribbean. But here are some notes from yesterday’s action.
Alberto Cabrera, RHP – Cabrera blew his first save of the winter, allowing one earned run on three hits in a Toros loss.
Junior Lake, OF – Lake struck out four times for Oriente.
Marcos Mateo, RHP – Mateo gave up a hit and a walk, but struck out the side to pick up his eighth save of the winter for Estrellas. He has a 0.98 ERA this offseason.
Edwin Maysonet, SS – Maysonet had a single and a walk as Santurce picked up a win.
Frank Del Valle and Yoanner Negrin both pitched well in their starts over the holiday weekend, while Junior Lake and Edwin Maysonet contributed offensively for their respective teams. Here’s how the Cubs representatives fared this weekend in the Caribbean.
Alberto Cabrera, RHP – The Cubs reliever gave up an earned run in one inning pitched on Saturday. He struck out one batter.
Marcos Mateo, RHP – Mateo continues to be a reliable arm for Oriente, as he racked up his sixth and seventh saves of the winter on Friday and Saturday.
Junior Lake, LF – On Saturday, Lake went 2-for-3 with a pair of singles, a walk and a run scored for Oriente. The Cubs outfielder added two more hits on Friday.
Edwin Maysonet, SS – In Friday’s game, Maysonet had a pair of hits, including a double and a run scored, for Santurce.
Jonathan Mota, 3B – Mota was hitless in two official at-bats, but he drew a pair of walks and scored a run on Friday for Ponce.
Frank Del Valle, LHSP – Del Valle started for Margarita on Friday, going six innings, giving up two earned runs and striking out seven in a no-decision.
Yoanner Negrin, RHSP – Negrin got the start on Thursday for Caracas and picked up the win, going five innings and giving up no runs on three hits and striking out three.
Hector Rondon, RHP – Rondon pitched the eighth inning for Caracas on Friday, giving up an earned run and striking out one in the win.