No-no for the Cub-Cubs!! ... sort of
I was fortunate to catch the majority of the Cubs/A's game this afternoon and it was a good one. While it is still only spring training and it was a split squad game with mostly minor leaguers on the scorecards, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
The game flew by (10 innings in under three hours) and Cubs pitching retired 29 before allowing a hit. You read that correctly, 9+ hitless innings for the A's. Who accomplished this amazing, never before seen cactus league feat? It was a combined effort with Sean Marshall (who?) and Angel Guzman each working 4. Aardsma took care of the ninth before Koronka took over in the 10th and blew it (the no hitter that is). The Cubs did manage to pull this one out in the bottom of the 10th. Brandon Taylor (again, who?) got the RBI with a broken bat hit that made it to the left field wall. Final score was 1-0 in case you didn't infer that already.
This one really should have been over in the ninth. Jamal Strong started things off with a standing double. He advanced to 3rd on a sac bunt (nice!). Next, the A's decided to juice the bases w/2 intentional walks. The A's were able to prolong the inevitable two ground ball outs... Hopefully, once the season kicks off, we'll see less runners LOB. I'm not holding my breath though...the Cubs seem to do this REALLY well.
Some random good stuff from the game: 3 double plays (thanks to a few walks and Cedeno's glove), 2 sac bunts (Dusty is taking a page out of the south-siders playbook apparently...hopefully we see more of this once the season starts) and 1 shrouded Dusty. Let me clarify that last item: being in Mesa, I guess Dusty is trying to stay as cool (literally and figuratively? sure, why not) as possible. Throughout the game he was sporting a Cubbie blue shroud out of the back of his cap. Pretty sweet look but I think he'll retire it before opening day.