It was a “mental game” for the likes of the Chicago White Sox’s Oscar Colás and Romy Gonzalez, who watched Thursday’s game along with coaches from the dugout.

Catcher Carlos Pérez had two hits and one RBI for the Sox in a 5-4 loss to Team Colombia in an exhibition game at Camelback Ranch.

“(Colás is) off from the physical stuff but not from the mental side of it or the development side of it,” manager Pedro Grifol said. “The guys who are there and not in the game, the young guys coming up, it’s a mental game for them. We have to take full advantage of that.”

Jameson Taillon didn’t let a long three-run first inning derail his outing Thursday against the Cincinnati Reds. The veteran right-hander got the work in he wanted, going 3⅔ innings in the Cubs’ 8-6 comeback win, their eighth straight Cactus League victory.

“Sometimes days like that can be valuable,” said Taillon, who gave up four hits and four runs. He didn’t walk a batter and struck out three.

“I feel like if this were the regular season, I could turn that into like a six or seven inning outing, but the conversation on the bench was awesome,” he said.

Trey Mancini, Patrick Wisdom and Christopher Morel homered in the sixth, part of a six-run inning to erase the Reds’ lead.

Chicago Tribune baseball writers LaMond Pope and Meghan Montemurro will be providing Cubs and White Sox updates throughout spring training.

Manny Rodríguez trying to build case for bullpen spot

Flashing 98- and 99-mph fastballs early in spring is one way to get noticed.

Throwing clean innings will help a pitcher’s cause too. Rodríguez’s strong start through three Cactus League appearances has garnered attention for the way he has been having success.

“Watching him in the past he was more of a thrower,” Cubs manager David Ross said Thursday. “The last couple outings he’s really looked like a pitcher. He’s moved the ball in and out threw a couple backdoor sliders. … He’s just continued to evolve in his skills and obviously he’s healthy and looks really good on the mound.”

Rodríguez, 26, has tossed three scoreless innings with only one hit and one walk. His path to a spot in the opening-day bullpen will be challenged by his lack of a 40-man roster spot after the organization designated him for assignment in the offseason. But he has an opportunity to stay on the …read more

Source:: The Mercury News


Cactus League report: ‘A rough night’ for Dylan Cease — while a Cubs pitcher opens some eyes in bid for a bullpen spot

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