Kyle Hendricks got his final tuneup start against the Royals in Surprise. The Cubs lineup was laden with minor leaguers in a very uneventful game. (Box score)
Why the Cubs Won
Two 9th inning home runs gave the Cubs a 5-1 lead, after which they managed to hold on for the win.
Pinch-hitter Ian Rice blasted a long homer to left field off of Blaine Boyer in the 9th inning. The two-run dinger gave the Cubs a 3-1 lead.
Stats That (Don’t) Matter
- Hendricks walked his first two batters of the spring, might be time to send him to Iowa. Seriously though, the Professor looked good again, allowing only one hit and striking out two in four scoreless frames.
- One of only two regulars to start Sunday, Ben Zobrist walked and doubled twice. He got held up in traffic and almost missed the start of the game, so perhaps he should be late all the time.
- Anthony Bass pitched a scoreless inning of relief. The Cubs haven’t announced the final bullpen spot, for which Eddie Butler is the favorite, but Bass is alive for that spot as of now.
Hendricks looks ready to go for his start Friday in Miami against the Marlins.
Yu Darvish and the Cubs head to Fort Myers, Florida to play the Red Sox at mini Fenway — I mean JetBlue Park — on Monday. The 5:05pm CT game airs on MLB.tv and an audio stream is on Cubs.com.