Results tagged ‘ John Gaub ’

Get to know: Left-hander John Gaub

A former 21st-round pick of the Indians, reliever John Gaub has had to prove himself every step of the way to get to the major leagues. Vine Line had the first cup of coffee with Gaub in early September, talking to him about overcoming injuries and developing a new pitch that helped him get to the majors. It’s an exclusive look at the player development in the Cubs organization. Subscribe to Vine Line to read more from Gaub’s interview and everything from minors to majors. (Photo by Stephen Green)

SPINNING YARN Earlier in my career I [threw] just two pitches—a fastball and slider. My slider’s a fairly hard pitch, so this year with [Iowa pitching coach] Mike Mason I started working on a curveball. And it came around really quick. I started throwing it a lot.

MORE THAN LEFTIES-ONLY The curveball helped. I developed that this year, especially against right-handers. With the slider breaking towards them, it’s an easier pitch for them to hit, so the curveball, which is more or less almost like a change-up, is just a third speed. It’s something else you’ve got to keep in the back of your head, especially right-handers, I’ll throw that earlier, I’ll go to it later if I need to. I’ve attacked lefties the same way I always have, I’ve always done well, but right-handers is really something I wanted to improve upon.

HEALTH At one point I spent about three straight years in recovery from surgery. After the second one, they told me it’s a very small chance I’d be able to pitch again pain-free. Just that in itself I consider a success, let alone pitching for as long and as well as I have. I’m blessed to not only have the arm that I do but to be able to have come through the injuries.

Gaub’s adjustments earn him his first call-up

Left-handed reliever John Gaub was one of three additional call-ups announced today, making his debut with the big league club. Lou Montañez and DJ LeMahieu also were recalled to Chicago.

Below is our Minor League Notebook on Gaub, featured in the July 2011 issue of Vine Line. A subscription to the official magazine of the Chicago Cubs gets you monthly coverage of the farm system, including expanded scouting reports and player tracking that debuted this month. (Written by Mike Malloy; photo by Stephen Green)

The good news for John Gaub is that he’s done with shoulder surgeries. The reason for the good news is the bad news: His left shoulder can’t handle any more surgeries.

Gaub, 26, has bounced back from his latest physical setback. Over 55.1 minor league innings, opponents hit just .209 off the left-handed reliever. His fastball has hit 97 mph this season with Class AAA Iowa, and it consistently ranges from 93 to 95.

“He’s throwing harder than he ever has,” Iowa pitching coach Mike Mason said.

He’s also added a curveball to his well-established fastball and slider.

“A major league bat can cover 95 and 86 [mph],” said Mason, referring to Gaub’s fastball and slider speeds.

The curveball, Mason said, comes in at a dazzlingly slow 78-80 mph, getting hitters out in front and making his fastball appear that much faster. (more…)

Farm Report: LaHair leads Triple-A All-Stars

Bryan LaHair has torn up Triple-A pitching this season. (Photo by Stephen Green)

Starlin Castro isn’t the only player in the Cubs organization representing his team in an All-Star Game. (Though he’s the only one with two stolen bases in one, entering in the fifth inning as a pinch-runner.)

Between Chicago and the club’s top four minor league levels, 27 players were selected to All-Star teams. Vine Line’s August issue covers Cubs farmhand experiences, from personal and developmental perspectives, at the various midsummer events.

Wednesday night’s Triple-A All-Star Game [MLB Network, 8 p.m. CT] showcases three Iowa Cubs on the Pacific League team: Bryan LaHair, Welington Castillo and John Gaub.

Starting at first base, LaHair currently shares the league lead in homers (25) and has an impressive line of .349 AVG/.418 OBP/.681 SLG. The Cubs acquired him as a minor league free agent after the 2009 season.

Marlon Byrd talked on his blog, The Byrd’s Nest, about his first-hand experience with LaHair and Castillo during his rehab appearances.

“His [LaHair’s] numbers are phenomenal. At some point, hopefully he gets a chance to help the team, whether it’s here or somewhere,” Byrd said. “Welington Castillo is looking good back there and still learning.” (more…)

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