Pieces Falling Into Place for Cubs During Spring

Posted on 22 March 2010 by Lou

Slowly, but surely, the pieces are falling into place for the Chicago Cubs during spring training.  Carlos Zambrano began the 1st Cubs starter to go 5 innings this spring – tossing 5 scoreless innings in the Cubs 4-0 win over the Kansas City Royals on Saturday.  Big Z gave up 3 hit and 2 walks while striking out 4 batters.  Esmailin Cardidad still hasn’t given up a run this spring – tossing a scoreless 8th inning to set up closer Carlos Marmol.  Marmol for his part didn’t disappoint – he gave up one hit, but struck out the side to preserve the Cubs win.  I love the Caridad/Marmol combo – which could be an effective combination during the 2010 MLB schedule.

The Cubs only managed 6 hits, but Ryan Theriot came through in the clutch with a base-clearing double in the 2nd inning that plated 3 runs.  Theriot is still hitting over .500 for the spring.  Marlon Byrd had 2 more hits and has been one of the Cubs more consistent hitters all spring.  Alfonso Soriano had another hit and is slowly showing better signs at the plate.  And Geovany Soto had 1 hit, with 1 RBI, 1 run scored and 1 walk – he is now batting .400 this spring.  The weight loss and better conditioning really seems to have helped Soto regain his 2008 form.

I hate to get too far ahead of myself, but it seems like the Cubs are putting together a good stretch of baseball here.  While this doesn’t count for anything, if the Cubs can gain a little momentum at the end of spring training and earn a little confidence in themselves that was lost during a dismal 2009 season, it can only mean good things for the organization.  Let’s hope they avoid any injuries down the stretch here and come out swinging against the Braves in Atlanta and the Reds in Cincinnati before they battle the Brewers at home at Wrigley Field during the Cubs home opener…

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