The fog is rolling in here at Wrigley Field as the Cubs prepare to take on the Mets and right-hander Dillon Gee. We’ll take a look at some isolated power numbers for Aramis Ramirez as well as our trip around the minor leagues. GM Jim Hendry said Geovany Soto caught three innings at extended spring training today. He’ll catch 5-6 innings tomorrow at Class AA Tennessee and maybe a full game there Friday. If that goes well, he’ll be back here in time for Saturday’s game against the Pirates.
As we've been pointing out, the Cubs have a logjam at the top of their RBI leaderboard. Alfonso Soriano, who hasn't driven in a run since May 11, now is tied for the team lead at 23 with Darwin Barney and Starlin Castro. Soriano also hasn't homered since May 2. His line for May is .288/.329/.379 for an OPS of .708. He has 1 homer and 3 RBI for the month after hitting 10 homers and driving in 20 in April.
The other case is Aramis Ramirez. He has 1 homer for the season, and it came April 6. In May, Ramirez is at .296/.351/.366 for an OPS of .717. He has no homers and 6 RBI this month.
Let's take a look at Ramirez' isolated power (ISO), which measure extra-base hit performance and is calculated by subtracting batting average from slugging percentage. Ramirez's ISO is at a low .090. Here are Ramirez's ISO numbers for the past several years:
“We’ll always take the homers,” said manager Mike Quade. “Just putting together quality at-bats. If they’re not home runs, a double here and there, but basehits are fine."
Jeff Baker may be available to pinch hit tonight as he continues to nurse a slight groin injury, suffered Sunday night in Boston. Q says he wants to keep Reed Johnson in the lineup but that he may get Tony Campana a start somewhere tomorrow against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey.
From the game notes: Lou Montanez made his Cubs debut last night, almost 11 years after the Cubs drafted him. The longest wait for a Cubs draft pick to make his Cubs debut is almost 15 years. Pitcher Chuck Crim was drafted by the Cubs in 1979 but did not appear in a game with them until 1994 after pitching for the Brewers and Angels. Thanks to research historian Ed Hartig for the note.
Class AAA Iowa lost 4-1 to Las Vegas. Brad Snyder hit his seventh homer of the year. RHP Marcos Mateo fanned four in 3.2 perfect innings of relief, lowering his ERA from 6.75 to 1.80.
Tyler Colvin was 0-for-4 with an error. Since being sent to Iowa, Colvin is 7-for-24 (.292) with 3 doubles, 1 triple and 1 homer
"Mechanically I'm fine," Colvin told the Des Moines Register. "It's just about getting my timing back."
The goal is to get Colvin playing time and at-bats, two things he wasn't getting in Chicago.
"That's a tough role to play in the big leagues," Iowa manager Bill Dancy told the Register. "He needed at-bats, that's why they sent him here. And in the short time he's been with us, he's made good progress.
"He's part of the future of the Cubs. They're being patient with him. Everyone hears about the sophomore jinx - pitchers adjusting to you - now it's up to the hitter to adjust to the pitchers."
At Class AA Tennessee, Jae-Hoon Ha and Nelson Perez each hit his first homer. Ryan Flaherty hit his 11th as the Smokies beat Mississippi 10-5. Flaherty extended a hitting streak to nine games, going 2-for-4. Alberto Cabrera (6-2, 5.36) was the winner, going 7 innings and giving up 6 hits and 3 runs.
The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that outfielder Jim Adduci had a broken bone in his hand surgically repaired and could possibly miss the rest of the season.
Class A Daytona won its seventh in a row to improve to 34-12. Jake Opitz hit a walk-off homer to help beat St. Lucie 9-7. Justin Bour hit his 12th homer of the season, and Junior Lake hit his fifth. Bour was 3-for-4 with his third straight multihit game. Lake extended a hit streak to nine games, going 3-for-5 with his team-leading 18th stolen base. Opitz drove in 4 runs.
Class A Peoria lost 10-2 to Wisconsin. Su-Min Jung took the loss, working 3.2 innings and giving up 10 hits and 9 earned runs. Greg Rohan (.344) extended his hitting streak to five games, going 2-for-4. Richard Jones (.296) extended his hitting streak to four games, going 2-for-3 with a walk.