On The Farm: McNutt Keeps Daytona Close To First

On The Farm: McNutt Keeps Daytona Close To First

Thursday Aug. 19, 2010
Posted: 8:45 a.m.
By Kevin Czerwinski
CUBS Daytona A
The Cubs blew by host Dunedin Wednesday night, 9-3, picking up a game on first place Tampa in the FSL North Division in the process. Tampa lost at home to Clearwater and now leads Daytona by a game.

Trey McNutt 4-0 was the dominant force for Daytona, pitching six shutout innings while allowing only one hit. He fanned six to improve to 10-0 on the year after starting out by going 6-0 at Peoria. McNutt has pitched shutout ball in three of his last four starts.

Casey Lambert added two scoreless innings of relief before the Jays touched up Oswaldo Martinez for three ninth-inning runs.

Ryan Flaherty had four hits, including a homer, and three RBIs while Rebel Ridling added four hits. D.J. LeMahieu had three hits.

Boise Short-Season A
The Hawks went deep three times in a 4-1 victory over visiting Everett at Memorial Stadium. The outburst marked the first time since July 15, 2007 that Boise hit more than two homers in a game.

Richard Jones gave the Hawks a 1-0 lead with an RBI single in the third inning but broke out the big lumber in the fourth as Ryan Cuneo and Jeff Vigurs each hit solo homers. For Vigurs, it was the first of his career. Jones added a solo homer in the fifth.

Austin Kirk allowed a run on four hits over five innings to pick up his fourth win of the year,
Peoria A
The Chiefs stretched their winning streak to four games Wednesday night, topping Burlington, 5-2, at OBrien Field.

Peoria scored three times in the seventh inning to break open what had been a close game. Anthony Giansanti and Logan Watkins had RBI singles in the inning. Nick Struck picked up his eight victory and is 6-0 in his last seven appearances after allowing two runs in five innings. Justin Bour drew his seventh intentional walk of the year, tying him for fourth all-time on the Chiefs single-season list with several players, including Albert Pujols. Daric Barton holds the franchise record with 10.
In other action, Eric Duncans RBI single in the 10th inning gave Mississippi a 7-6 victory over Tennessee at Smokies Park. The Braves had scored four eight-inning runs, tying the score at 6-6. Brandon Guyer had a pair of hits, including a homer and two RBIs, to extend his hitting streak to 18 games. Hes batting .471 33-for-70 with five homers and 24 RBIs during the streak. Iowa dropped its second straight at Sacramento, losing a 4-2 decision at Raley Field. Austin Bibens-Dirkx had his first Triple-A setback, giving up four runs on 10 hits in six innings to take the loss. Brad Snyder drove in his 88th run, extending his career high. The AZL Cubs dropped an 8-1 decision to the Padres.
WHITE SOXWinston-Salem A
Rain wrecked havoc with the Dash again on Wednesday but they did manage to finish one game, earning a victory in the process. Winston-Salem topped Salem, 4-3, in 14 innings, which was the completion of a Tuesday night washout.

The second and regularly scheduled game was stopped in the fourth inning because of the weather with the Red Sox leading, 1-0. That game will be finished on Thursday followed by a seven-inning affair.

Ozzie Lewis drew a one-out walk in the 14th and then went to third on a Logan Johnson single. Andrew Garcias sacrifice fly then brought Lewis home to end the marathon. Hector Santiago pitched 1 13 scoreless innings for the win.
In other action, Durham handled Charlotte, 5-1, at Knights Stadium, stretching the hosts losing streak to five games. The Bulls magic number for clinching a division title is four. Carlos Torres allowed four runs on eight hits over 5 23 innings. Brent Morel went 2-for-4 and is hitting .421 over his last nine games 16-for-38. Birmingham reached new lows in an already dismal season, dropping a 17-4 decision to visiting Huntsville. The 17 runs and 22 hits allowed were season highs while the 13-run loss was the worst of the year for the Barons. Josh Phegley was 2-for-5 in his Birmingham debut. Orem exploded for eight runs in the eighth inning Wednesday night to stun visiting Great Falls, 12-3. Mike Blanke was 3-for-4 and is hitting .412 over his last nine games. Mother Nature and Hickory got the best of Kannapolis as the Crawdads earned a 7-4 victory at Fieldcrest Canon Stadium. The game, which lasted more than three hours, also included a lengthy rain delay. Ryan Buch suffered his first Sally League loss after giving up four runs on seven hits in four innings. Tyler Saladino had a solo homer for the Intimidators.

Kevin Czerwinski can be reached at ktczerwinski@gmail.com.

Morning Update: Bulls win season opener; World Series returns to Wrigley

Morning Update: Bulls win season opener; World Series returns to Wrigley

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Bulls physicality a new wrinkle from last season

Bulls physicality a new wrinkle from last season

College teammates Jimmy Butler and Jae Crowder made plans to go to dinner after Thursday’s game in Chicago but for a few short moments they weren’t just competitors but unexpected combatants, getting tangled up in the second quarter.

There looked to be some harsh words exchanged after Butler took a charge on an unsuspecting Crowder near three-quarter court, with Crowder putting the basketball in Butler’s chest while Butler was still on the floor, causing players on both teams to convene for some tense moments.

Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas got involved and then before Butler could blink, Bulls guard Rajon Rondo joined the proceedings, as pushing and shoving ensued before technical fouls were assessed to both teams after an officials’ review.

If one wondered whether these Bulls—a team that touts itself as young with so many players having three years or less professional experience—could play with some bark and bite, perhaps the season opener provided a bit of a positive preview for the next 81 games.

Nearby, an unbothered Dwyane Wade took a practice 3-point shot, much to the delight of the United Center crowd, as observers witnessed the first sign of tangible proof the Bulls have intentions on regaining a bit of an edge on the floor.

Wade joked and took it as a sign of respect between the two teams.

“It looked like it, right? Yeah. It was a little something out there,” said Wade when asked if there was some chippy play. “Every time we play them it’s gonna be like that. Two teams finding their way in the Eastern Conference. We know we gotta see each other a lot. They never give up. They can be down 30 with 15 seconds left and they’re still gonna fight.”

The Bulls have externally preached toughness from the start of camp. Although Wade didn’t participate in that meeting of the minds, he isn’t exactly running away from such matters.
And Rajon Rondo is competitively ornery enough to have his voice hard no matter the setting.

[SHOP: Gear up, Bulls fans!]

“It’s been a big theme of practice,” Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. “We want to play with physicality and toughness. I think it was evident on the glass tonight.”

Yes, the Bulls outrebounded the Celtics by 19, but that could’ve been a by-product of the Bulls’ crashing the offensive glass on a porous shooting night. And yes, the slightly tense moment between Butler and Crowder probably won’t be an expected occurrence.

But when’s the last time one had multiple examples to dissect to discern this team’s level of toughness—or lack thereof.

“That’s something to show that the guys are out there fighting for each other,” Hoiberg said. “That they were playing with an edge. It happens with this game. You have to be competitive.”

Competition boiled over slightly, but considering the NBA isn’t exactly UFC, one doesn’t have to do much to display a little physical resolve.

“The fact that nothing escalated was good,” Hoiberg said. “The fact that those guys are out there and playing for each other and have each other’s back, that’s a huge thing right now.”

Too many times last season, it seemed the Bulls would submit in situations like those. Not that they were particularly soft, but it didn’t appear they had the collective will to fight for one another if an altercation arose.

Half the time, they looked like they could barely stand to be in the room with each other.

“It’s people’s will to win. Not saying a bad thing about anybody from last year,” Butler said. “To tell you the truth, I study the game and put in a lot of work but Rondo studies the game a lot. Every time I’m in the gym, he’s in the gym. That lets me know, these (dudes) are going to war with you. Every day. When I hit that deck, Rondo was right there. I wanna play with guys that’s gonna play hard, that’s gonna fight.”

And it didn’t take long for Butler to realize he has at least a couple teammates willing to jump in the foxhole with him.