SCOTTSDALE, Arizona -- I thought this revelation from Jake Arrieta was interesting:
After breezing through the first inning Monday against the Padres, Cubs starter Jake Arrieta said he issued an "intentionally unintentional" walk to Derek Norris leading off the second. "I wanted to pitch with guys on base," he explained. "I wanted to work on pitching from the stretch with good timing, good rhythm, good tempo."
There, in one statement, is one of the clearest indications that pitchers are sometimes working on specific things during spring training, not necessarily focused on winning. Arrieta continued:
"It's hard to work on everything in one outing," Arrieta said. "I would've liked to have thrown a few more changeups today, but the biggest concern was from the stretch with guys on base and still executing quality pitches, spinning some good breaking balls."
Which he did quite well, I thought. The article says Arrieta will pitch "Friday" on a back field against minor leaguers "instead of facing the Indians in Goodyear," but the game against Cleveland is on Saturday, and Saturday would be normal rest for Jake, so I'm assuming he'll be throwing on Saturday. That would also keep him on target for Opening Day in Anaheim April 4.
Here are today's particulars.
Fowler CF, Heyward RF, Rizzo 1B, Schwarber LF, Candelario 3B, Baez 2B, Federowicz C, Alcantara DH, Kawasaki SS
Jay LF, Norris C, Myers 1B, Kemp RF, Solarte 3B, Ramirez SS, Spangenberg 2B, Margot CF, Ross P
This, I believe, is the first time an opposing pitcher has been in a batting order against the Cubs this spring. I assume Cubs pitchers will start hitting in games soon.
Clayton Richard starts for the Cubs. Also scheduled: Ryan Williams, Neil Ramirez, Justin Grimm, Brandon Gomes and Spencer Patton.
Tyson Ross goes for the Padres.
Today's game is on cubs.com with Len Kasper and Mick Gillispie. If you have MLB.tv it's available through the Padres broadcast on Fox Sports San Diego.
Please visit our SB Nation Padres site Gaslamp Ball. If you do go there to interact with Padres fans, please be respectful, abide by their individual site rules and serve as a good representation of Cub fans in general and BCB in particular.
Please note that during spring training, Gameday doesn't usually go pitch-by-pitch as it does during the regular season -- usually, it will update after each at-bat.
For spring-training games, we'll have a first-pitch thread at five minutes to game time and one overflow thread, 90 minutes after game time (because I know how you all like overflow threads!). For today, that will be 3 p.m. CT and 4:30 p.m. CT.
These threads will not post individually onto the front page; instead, you can find links to them in the box marked "Chicago Cubs Game Threads" at the bottom of the front page. There will also be a StoryStream on the front page with all the game thread links, as well as the recap after the game is over. The pitcher boxes and regular-season stats will return on Opening Day.
Discuss amongst yourselves.