I'll freely admit I didn't see the last half of this game -- the West Coast starts wind up ending far too late for someone whose work schedule starts at 4 am -- but three former Cub farmhands were primarily responsible for the Cubs' 7-6 loss to the White Sox in Las Vegas late last night.
Michael Restovich, who Jim Hendry signed in 2006 to provide a potential platoon partner for Jacque Jones (and then Dusty Baker refused to play him), homered off Angel Guzman in the 8th inning to tie the game. Then, Ben Broussard and Josh Kroeger, who were teammates at Iowa in the Cubs' organization last year, teamed up in the ninth for the winning run, Broussard driving in Kroeger, who had singled and advanced to second on a wild pitch by David Patton.
During the part of the game that I did see, Jeff Samardzija gave up three runs in three innings, issuing no walks. That's good, but the two batters he hit isn't. The Shark seemed up in the zone throughout, and the Sox got 14 hits off Cubs pitching, five of them for extra bases. John van Benschoten, a one-time first-round pick of the Pirates who has never been able to stick in the majors, was responsible for six of those hits and allowed four of the Cubs runs. At 28 and with a 9.20 career major league ERA in 90 innings, I might gently suggest that van Benschoten try another line of work.
Good things from Cubs players: Ryan Theriot had three hits and Mike Fontenot (a triple) and Aramis Ramirez had two each. That's about it -- Cubs pitching wasn't that great, except for the scoreless innings thrown by Chad Fox and J. R. Mathes, neither of whom has much of a chance of making the 25-man roster.
Len & Bob spent quite a bit of time on the air with a PR flack touting the virtues of spending vacation time and money in Las Vegas, which gave me the impression that hotel bookings in Vegas are way down and they're getting a little desperate in these tough economic times. The attendance of 11,459 was pretty good on a cool night. We'll see if the day game attendance today is as good. I'll have a game preview/thread up at 1 pm CST.