MESA, AZ – The Cubs paid a visit to the Rockies at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on Monday afternoon, and the Cubs got a boost offensively from outfielder Matt Szczur as they went on to defeat the Rockies 9-6 in a ballgame that featured a very long eighth inning for both clubs.
The Cubs got 4.2 innings out of their starting pitcher on the afternoon, Kyle Hendricks, allowed two runs in the fourth inning versus the Rockies. Hendricks struck out four and walked none during his outing, and ran his spring strikeout total to 14 in just 13.2 innings of work thus far.
The Cubs got on the board first in the top of the third inning when prospect Jeimer Candelario doubled to open the frame, Kyle Schwarber eventually drove Candelario in on a base-hit to right field. Albert Almora would drive in the second run of the inning when he scored Cubs shortstop Munenori Kawasaki on a sacrifice-fly, giving the Cubs a 2-0 lead at that point in the game.
Trevor Story opened the scoring for the Rockies in the fourth against Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks with a lead-off double, before Story and Raimel Tapia scored on RBI singles by Cristhian Adames and Dustin Garneau.
The Cubs scored five runs on five hits in the top of the eighth inning against Colorado reliever Jairo Diaz to take a 9-2 lead over the Rockies, before Colorado scored four of their own in the home half of the eighth inning, cutting the Cubs lead to 9-6.
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Eloy Jimenez to be Sidelined for Three Weeks
The Cubs top ranked prospect, Eloy Jimenez was injured last Tuesday in a game against the Milwaukee Brewers when he made an awkward throw, and began to experience shoulder soreness as a result.
The outfielder has underwent an MRI on the injured right shoulder, and the Cubs will seek the opinion of Dr. Stephen Gryzlo on the matter. Jimenez will be out of action for at least the next three weeks at this point, effectively ending his spring training, one in which he impressed the Cubs and the fans alike.
“He obviously opened a lot of eyes this spring,” Hoyer said. “He played great, he carries himself so well. We’ll get this right and get him back out there.”
“We love the way he swings the bat, the way he carries himself,” Hoyer said. “The ball comes off like very few people in the game in terms of velocity off the bat. His balance is terrific at the plate. I thought he had a great camp for a 20-year-old kid.
“He didn’t just open eyes in batting practice with his power, but he opened some eyes in the game,” Hoyer said. “He had some really good at-bats and we thought he played great. It’s a shame he’ll start the season a little late, but that’s when you remember it’s a five-month season.”
Jimenez will not be able to swing a bat or participate in throwing activities during his three week rest period, and will be reevaluated at the end of the three weeks by the Cubs medical staff.