Roster Crunch and Cat Skinning
Submitted by Rob G. on Wed, 06/15/2005 - 10:19am
GAME 64 PREVIEW FLORIDA MARLINS (32-30) at CHICAGO CUBS (34-29) Wrigley Field, 7:05pm CT, TV: FSFL, WGN
First things first, Sergio! A wonderful performance blighted only by the return of his facial hair. And the fact no-one now can bring themselves to look past his last sixteen innings or so whenever someone has the audacity to suggest he should be traded. But you know me, though I'm one of Mitre's biggest fans, since before this time last week too, I'm audacious. And trading Mitre now makes a lot of sense. His value may never be higher, this team still has serious needs that can only be resolved via trades, and the Cubs are staring down the barrel of a serious pitching roster crunch come next year, with five or six pitchers the Cubs believe to be major-league ready (Maddux, Rusch, Mitre, Williams, a healthy Guzman and now Rich Hill too) potentially fighting over just two rotation spots behind Prior, Zambrano and Wood. It's a nice position to be in, but something is going to have to give somewhere.
What a contrast in styles we'll see today. There's Maddux, of course, who hasn't thrown a pitch over 90mph in years. And then there's A.J. Burnett, who hasn't thrown a pitch over 100mph in, well, the last four days (actually, I'm not even sure of that, he's probably thrown a side session in that time). There's Maddux, who throws more pitches than you can shake a stick at (but no curve) with all the guile in the world. And then there's Burnett, who throws nothing but red-hot heat and knee-buckling power curves (okay, that's not quite true, he does once every few starts throw a change, and that change is about as fast as Maddux's fastball!). There probably couldn't be a greater contrast between two pitchers, at least short of Maddux being left-handed. And yet both at their best are as good as any pitcher in the game. There's more than one way to skin a cat.
Go Cubs! And behave yourselves in the comments, or I'll send Greg Maddux over to skin your cat. And you thought he looked like such an amicable guy...
|SP Greg Maddux||SP A.J. Burnett|
|CF *Juan Pierre||SS #Neifi Perez|
|2B #Luis Castillo||CF *Corey Patterson|
|LF Miguel Cabrera||1B Derrek Lee|
|1B *Carlos Delgado||RF *Jeromy Burnitz|
|3B Mike Lowell||3B Aramis Ramirez|
|C Paul Lo Duca||2B *Todd Walker|
|RF Juan Encarnacion||LF *Todd Hollandsworth|
|SS Alex Gonzalez||C Michael Barrett|
|Pitcher's spot||Pitcher's spot|