Cubs Lose Pair, And Players

Scottsdale, AZ, USA; Chicago Cubs third baseman Adrian Cardenas catches a pop fly by Colorado Rockies first baseman Todd Helton during the third inning at Salt River Fields. Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

MESA, Arizona -- The Cubs lost both split-squad games Thursday, and the team, which had been relatively healthy all spring, also lost a few players, though none of the injuries seem too serious.

Darwin Barney, who was announced in the Mesa game's starting lineup, was scratched right before game time with tightness in his side after a BP swing. Ian Stewart, same story, in the original lineup at Talking Stick, pulled for a sore right quad. Both of them, as are we all, day-to-day.

Then Blake DeWitt, who actually did play in the Talking Stick game, got hit by a pitch and left that game. This injury doesn't appear serious either.

Any injuries suffered by Cubs pitchers in the 12-2 loss to the Diamondbacks were purely psychological. Ryan Dempster wasn't horrible, but wasn't very good either, giving up eight hits in less than four innings. It might have been worse if not for a nice double play that ended the third inning.

You know it was a bad pitching day when Carlos Marmol had the best outing of any Cubs hurler, and even that wasn't that good. Marmol walked the first man he faced... another "here we go again" moment. But he settled down and threw a decent inning, even snapping off some good sliders. Meanwhile, Kerry Wood's line looks awful, but in reality, a couple of the hits he gave up might have been fielded by a major league infield and two of the runs charged to him scored on bases-loaded walks given up by Jeff Beliveau, who was horrific today. Beliveau was sent to Iowa today and clearly, his game needs work. He also helped the D'backs finish their scoring by allowing a monster grand slam to Paul Goldschmidt; the ball cleared the back fence behind the left field berm and hit a little brown car in the parking lot, providing some needed entertainment for the remains of a decent crowd of 9,912, that reportedly included a walkup sale of over 1,600. The season total for seven dates is 61,962, an average of 8,851.

I didn't see the 7-5 loss to the Rockies so I can't really say anything about it that you can't find yourself in the box score. I see Junior Lake homered; that's good and even though he was also reassigned, I hope he still gets some time in a couple of MLB games before this spring ends, as I'd love to see him play in person.

Friday back at Mesa again, Matt Garza will face the Giants' Eric Surkamp.

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