McNutt Off To Hot Start For Mesa

McNutt Off To Hot Start For Mesa

Friday Oct. 7, 2011
Posted: 6:30 p.m.

ARIZONA FALL LEAGUEMesa Solar Sox
Trey McNutt had mixed results this season at Double-A Tennessee, a year that could be described as disappointing when considering that he combined to win 10 games at three different levels in 2010.

McNutt, who won five games this season, made his AFL debut Friday afternoon and though he didnt factor in the decision as Mesa dropped a 4-3 decision at Salt River. He pitched three perfect innings, needing only 32 pitches to get through his outing. Twenty of those pitches were strikes as he exited without striking out a batter.

Fellow Cubs pitcher Marcus Hatley wasnt as fortunate. He was charged with the loss after giving up a run in the bottom of the ninth. He allowed a hit and a walk in 1 13 innings and was on the bench watching as Brandon Kloess, who pitched at three levels for the White Sox, induced what could have been a game-ending doubleplay.

Kloess got Nolan Arenado to hit a grounder but second baseman Jack Cunninghams throwing error allowed the winning run to score. Arenado was the first batter Kloess faced.

Josh Vitters went 1-for-4 for Mesa while DJ LeMahieu went hitless in four at-bats though he scored a run. White Sox prospect Brandon Short was had a triple and a walk in three at-bats while Tyler Saladino had a triple in four at-bats.
IBAF WORLD CUP
The undefeated Netherlands handed the United States its second loss of the IBAF World Cup Friday night, earning a 7-5 victory at Remon Cantera Stadium in Aguadulce City, Panama. The Cubs and the White Sox each had players contribute in a positive way after Los Angeles Angels starter Matt Shoemaker allowed seven runs in three innings.

Justin Cassell, who pitched at three levels for the White Sox this season, followed Shoemaker and pitched three scoreless innings. He fanned five and allowed only one hit. Jeff Beliveau, who split the season between Class-A Daytona and Double-A Tennessee for the Cubs, then threw two no-hit innings of his own, fanning four.

Sox prospect Andrew Garcia had a pair of hits, drew a walk and scored twice for the US. Teammate Jordan Danks went hitless in a pinch-hitting appearance while former Cubs top pick Brett Jackson went 1-for-5 with a run scored.

The US 3-2 will face Panama on Saturday night at Rod Care Stadium in Panama City while the Dutch improved to 5-0.

Bears looking into Teryl Austin’s past for clues on how Lions will scheme vs. Matt Barkley

Bears looking into Teryl Austin’s past for clues on how Lions will scheme vs. Matt Barkley

The adage “play the man, not the board” seems somehow appropriate for what the Bears are doing to prepare for the Detroit Lions behind quarterback Matt Barkley.

“The man” is Detroit defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, and the Bears have been scouting him as well as his defenses, beyond just Bears games, beyond this season and last, taking in his 2014 Detroit season when Austin prepared defenses for Jay Cutler and Jimmy Clausen.

How did Austin scheme for rookie Carson Wentz when the Lions played (and beat) the Philadelphia Eagles? How did he structure is defense to stop a rookie Teddy Bridgewater when Detroit played Minnesota? (Not very well, apparently, since the Vikings won both games and scored 54 points combined in the two games).

While the John Fox Bears staff went against Austin’s Lions defense twice last year, Cutler was the Bears quarterback. When the Bears beat Austin and the Lions two months ago, it was with Brian Hoyer.

Now the Bears quarterback is Matt Barkley, who has fewer NFL games played (seven) than Cutler has NFL seasons (11), Hoyer (eight), too, for that matter.

“Different defensive coordinators attack young quarterbacks differently,” said offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains. “Some guys blitz, some guys play a bunch of zone. This group on defense there, they have a really good defensive coordinator, they're really smart, they do a bunch of stuff. On the back end, they run all the coverages.

“As a game, we'll have to make adjustments as the game goes and see what their plan to come out is early.”

Coaches and players may talk about how they prepare for a scheme irrespective of which opposing quarterback, running back, linebacker or whatever they will be facing. But in fact, preparations start with who is orchestrating the opponent’s offense or defense – play the man, not the board.

[SHOP: Gear up Bears fans!]

A risk can be out-thinking yourself trying to anticipate what a coordinator will do. The first point, Loggains said, is to start with your own strengths.

“We definitely look at that,” Loggains said. “As you go in the league long and longer, you face these guys, you see them in crossover games. We always know how a guy attacks a rookie quarterback or attacks a young quarterback, a veteran, or, in Matt's case, a guy who hasn't played as much.”

Evaluations of Barkley’s performance will broaden, particularly now that he is on tape for defensive coordinators to scheme for and scout. And while they are watching Barkley, the Bears are watching them.

Bears Talk Podcast: Is there friction between John Fox and Vic Fangio?

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Bears Talk Podcast: Is there friction between John Fox and Vic Fangio?

In the latest Bears Talk Podcast, Jim Miller joins Pat Boyle to discuss the friction between John Fox and Vic Fangio. And are there changes in store for the Bears coordinators?

Plus, Brian Urlacher and Mark Schanowski break down the play of rookie Leonard Floyd and find out which one of Urlacher’s former teammates Floyd reminds him of.

And don't miss a preview of Sunday’s NFC North clash with the Lions, who will be out for revenge.

Check out the latest edition of the Bears Talk Podcast here: