Results tagged ‘ Carlos Zambrano ’

Those are the breaks

The team took a blow this afternoon when it was found that Ryan Dempster had broken his toe. He was slated to start tonight’s game but instead had to be placed on the 15-day DL. Carlos Zambrano will be pitching on short rest, with Kevin Hart returning to the Chicago bullpen after being sent down just yesterday.

Fukudome, CF
Theriot, SS
Lee, 1B
Hoffpauir, RF
Ramirez, 3B
Soriano, LF
Fontenot, 2B
Hill, C
Zambrano, RHP

Right-hander Javier Vazquez (5-7, 3.05 ERA) pitches for the Braves.

Country Music Night

Soriano, LF
Theriot, SS
Fukudome, CF
Bradley, RF
Hoffpauir, 1B
Fontenot, 2B
Hill, C
Freel, 3B
Marshall, LHP

Right-hander Ian Snell (1-5, 4.88 ERA) pitches for the Pirates.

Needing that win

A win tonight would put us right back at .500. And Carlos Zambrano returns to the rotation tomorrow afternoon, after missing a couple weeks due to a strained hamstring.

Night-day vs. the Giants

It will be a quick series played against the Giants in less than 24 hours — tonight’s game at 7:05 p.m. and a 1:20 p.m. game tomorrow afternoon.

Soriano, LF
Theriot, SS
Bradley, RF
Lee, 1B
Ramirez, 3B
Soto, C
Johnson, CF
Miles, 2B
Dempster, RHP

Left-hander Jonathan Sanchez (1-1, 2.60 ERA) will pitch for the Giants.

30 is the new 20

That’s the name of Bobby Scales’ MLBlog, which you should check out for a couple cool posts on Pacific Coast League travel and looking back at some of his early years in the minors. The Cubs selected Scales’ contract from Triple-A Iowa today, placing Carlos Zambrano on the 15-day DL with a hamstring injury.

Fergie and friends

A day after having his No. 31 retired along with Greg Maddux, Fergie Jenkins had a meet and greet over at Harry Caray’s Tavern, across the street from the ballpark. Fergie was promoting the book Dugout Wisdom, a collection of accounts from several Hall of Famers, including Jenkins himself.

Ho, Ho, Kam! Merry Cubs fans!

Thumbnail image for ON LOCATION LOGO.jpgMESA, Ariz.–It’s the first workout for the Cubs at HoHoKam Park, and everyone’s here today. While it’s just business as usual for the team, stretching, batting practice, bullpen sessions, it’s a big deal for everyone else. First off, the media. National writers Bob Nightengale, Jerry Crasnick, Alan Schwarz and Phil Rogers (he was at Fitch yesterday) are all here to check out our team. But more importantly, more than a handful of Cubs fans have showed up to hang out and watch the Cubs workout.

And everywhere you go–Starbucks, souvenir shops, stores or restaurants, people are talking about the start of Spring Training.

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Z_Fontenot_shoot_1.jpgBy the way, there was an AP photo in some of the local papers today showing Carlos Zambrano and Mike Fontenot doing their pregame ritual. LIke I mentioned in my blog yesterday, that was a photo shoot set up specifically for our 2009 gameday program CUBS2009. Here (right) is one of the authentic photos from the shoot. 

Also, frequent photo contributor to Vine Line Chris Bernacchi added this perspective to photo day (below). Pretty interesting. I feel like I’m watching an old 70s episode of “Batman” with Adam West and Burt Ward. OK, I just dated myself really badly there.

photo set up.jpgOur “In the Dugout” session went extremely well, with Lou offering me 30 minutes of his time, which is a lot considering he had to fit lunch and me in between practice and a photo shoot with Aquafina. While the shoot was going on, we could hear the agency people and Lou yelling. But he wasn’t being cantankerous, they were simulating an argument with an umpire. But it cracked up media relations director Peter Chase.

And lastly, I conducted a roundtable discussion with Cubs beat writers Carrie Muskat, Paul Sullivan and Gordon Wittenmyer. It was interesting to get the perspectives from seasoned vets like them. We talked about travel, players, the journalism industry, the competitive nature of journalism, technology.

Tomorrow: The first Cactus League game. Like Lou said: “I got 39 games to figure things out. We got plenty of time.”

–Mike Huang

The annual ritual: Photo Day

ON LOCATION LOGO.jpgMESA, Ariz.—Every year, major-league ballplayers must endure an annual ritual of combing their hair, shaving their faces clean (or at least somewhat) and mugging for the camera. It is Photo Day for them, and they put their best faces forward, despite the fact it’s 7:00 in the morning.

The entire first floor of Fitch Park is turned into a massive photo studio. Among the participants, the Associated Press, Major League Baseball, Topps and Comcast, among others. It’s all put together very efficiently and organized, led by media relations director Peter Chase and his staff. Our staff photographer Steve Green organizes the photographers in location.

For the most part, all the players arrive at their designated times, albeit bleary eyed. There are very compliant to whatever poses we ask them to do. Steve and I are there to do a special photo shoot for our gameday program, CUBS2009. We had scripted the poses beforehand knowing we wouldn’t have more than a minute with each one.

photoshoot.jpgThe shoot went swimmingly. We got some great shots Geovany Soto and Ivan DeJesus modeling the WBC jersey of their home country Puerto Rico. We also got a couple and of Mike Fontenot and Carlos Zambrano doing their pregame routine of “Z” hammering “Font” into the ground. They were very playful and the shots turned out great. But to see them, you’ll have to get the program at Wrigley Field!!!!

We also got Ryan Dempster and Rich Harden playing hockey with hockey sticks and using a baseball as a puck. Tremendous. Chad Gaudin and Reed Johnson seem like they are in a competition to see who can look most like a billy goat. Perhaps when they finally shave off their goatees, we can say we killed the “curse of the billy goat!”

Of course, then there was manager Lou Piniella, who’s seen his fair share of photo days. In fact, say Lou, how many of these photo days have you seen?

“Too many,” he laughed.

However, Cubs legend Billy Williams skipped photo day and went straight out to the field..

“‘Greenie!’ You don’t need me, right? Man, you got enough pictures of me after all these years. Look, after you turn 65, your face don’t change much year to year,” Williams said, cracking up all the photographers.

Hey, when a Hall of Famer says he doesn’t want to take a picture, he doesn’t have to take a picture.

Thumbnail image for azmg102 2-17-09.jpgWe also worked with Morry Gash, the photographer from AP. I asked him for a photo that he shot the other day. It was such a candid shot of Alfonso Soriano that I had to ask him if we could just borrow it for the blog.

But altogether, the photo shoot–and day–worked out very well….I’d encourage everyone to check out the gameday program the next time you’re at Wrigley Field. The pictures and experience was certainly worth more than a 1000 words.

–Mike Huang 

 PS. And one special note of sympathy goes out to our hitting coach Gerald Perry, who also was not at photo day. He lost his father last Friday to colon cancer. We are all thinking about you, G.



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