Murton For Certain

CUBS 2, PIRATES 1 W: Bob Howry (2-0) L: John Grabow (0-1) S: Ryan Dempster (7)">Wrapup | Box ScoreSounds like it was a nail-biter last night, as the stoppable force (the Cubs' offense) came up against the moveable object (the Pirates). Our boys in blue (well, actually, white with blue stripes) prevailed, with some timely hitting from Matt Murton overcoming some bad baserunning by Jacque "It's A Dumb Decision" Jones. Sean Marshall was very efficient -- it looks like's he's learning how to pitch at the big league level and it's a good thing, considering he's currently the Cubs' #2 starter. Of course, I didn't get to see it, because of the arcane MLB blackout rules. In case you're wondering, yes, I am going to mention this every time it comes up, which means every time the Cubs and Pirates play each other. In case you didn't read my post the lat time I wrote about this (and I don't blame you), I live in an area where Pirates games are blacked out under MLB rules, as are Phillies, Orioles, and Nationals games. That means none of those teams' games are available to me on DirecTV Extra Innings. The Phillies, Orioles, and Nationals have a number of games broadcast either over the air or on the local Fox or Comcast sports channel, and I get those games. But, because I am outside of the Pittsburgh area as far as DirecTV is concerned, I cannot get Fox Sports Pennsylvania (or whatever it's called), which broadcasts Pirates games. So, there is no way for me to watch a Pirates games. Now obviously that's not that big of a deal, except for the 15 TIMES A YEAR the Pirates play the Cubs. It's a stupid, arcane set of rules that MLB and DirecTV need to work together to change.


arcane or archaic? =P No matter what you call it, its rather stupid in my opinion.

I was really impressed with Marshall last night, sure he was facing the Pirates, but he was mixing stuff up, striking guys out with his change and fastball, along with the nasty hook he has. Brenley made a good point about that, noting it was a good thing that he was trying to get guys out with different pitches rather than falling into an (easily recognizable) pattern of going to the hook as an out-pitch. We've really gotta work on this baserunning though. Cedeno getting picked off twice in the same AB on Sunday, Jacque completely mis-reading a simple pop-up, etc. Its getting pretty bad honestly. We really need A-Ram and Matty to pick things up offensively...

How did Howry get the win if we lost 7-0 to the Brewers. Seriously, I hear a Bachelor of the Arts is cool too. :) duh huh huh need to let it go.

I suppose I should probably check to make sure the score is right before I post these reviews, huh?

It's fixed now.

Retro, it's actually arcane *and* archaic -- arcane because the way they're set up is unknown (and probably unknowable), and archaic because times have changed to the point where they need to be re-written.

Ok. I'm letting it go... into my pants because you're so smart. OK ok ok. For real, truce, I'll drop it.

Any TCR posters going to today's game by chance? Hit me at the email above if you want to meet up for a brew.

Christian -- can you solve that by getting the DirecTv Sports Pack for the $10/month? I have it and it gets me access to all the local Fox Sports channels. Maybe they would still black the Pirates games out, but I doubt it if you already have the Extra Innings package.

The FOX blackouts are the worst though. All i want is to watch a nice Saturday Cubs day game, and as far as i can tell there is no way to do that from Cali. Even with Extra Innings Fox Saturday games are still blacked out as i understand it. THAT blows.

433, that wouldn't work -- the Sports Pack would give me all of the regional sports channels but I wouldn't be able to get any out-of-market baseball games on those channels.

What is worse is that 2 summers ago I drove from Baltimore to Pittsburgh to see a Pirates-Cardinals game on a Saturday evening. Unbeknownst to me, living in Baltimore, the local FOX people changed the start time from 7:30 or so back to 3pm so it could be a FOX game of the week, and I arrived after the game had already ended. No update on the MLB website previous to the game starting, no update on ESPN, no notice anywhere that I could find. And I missed the game. ANd no refunds either. Bastards!!!

But Im not bitter. Not at all.


sadly I believe your only hope is to sign up for using a credit card with a zipcode outside of the blackout area. That used to be the work around although they may have fixed it now and go by IP addresses or something...

You probably don't want to be paying for that though if you already bought the DirecTV package.

I hope I don't get in trouble for posting something not-quite legal, but for those of you with, when they black out the Saturday Fox games, you can use a proxy server to trick the to think in you're in, say, Brazil or something. Then there are no blackouts for ESPN, Fox, etc.

OMG, check out the starting lineup for the Cardinals at this very second.

Tell me what is missing........

That's one helluva bench they've got today.

OMG is right....that is possibly the WORST lineup that a team with legitimate playoff aspirations has ever posted.

rolen=bronchitis....edmonds=arm numbness?...pujols=day off? maybe it's more...

gall (?!)
luna (?!?!)

that's atrocious. they're trying to give this one to the reds....

Rob, they fixed the credit card loophole, as I found out this spring. They now go by IP address, so a proxy server would be the only way to get around that.

I just went with the radio-only package instead. At work, I can't actually watch the game, so listening to it is good enough (and a lot cheaper).

Wow...and I thought the Cubs have had some bad lineups at different points this year. The Cubs have definitely not had a starting lineup like that!

btw, the cards are up 2-0 in the 3rd, which only goes to show that the reds pitching (dave williams) sucks.

rolen btw has a viral infection and has lost 10 lbs...pujols is being given a day off bc his back is bothering him (probably bc of spiezio's wild throws)...edmonds i'm not sure of why. has he been playing recently, or more days off after that cubs series?

on cue, the Cards lead 2-0.

Edmonds has been dealing with shoulder and the strange no feeling in his forearm issues.

that's atrocious. they're trying to give this one to the reds....

That is absolutely horrible. They'll still probably win 8-4.

comment to ruz:

You better get used to Monday nights type of baserunning by Jacque "It's a dumb decision" Jones. I watched him play many games for the Twinkies. Monday's goof is par for Jones's base running ability and at 31, I don't think it will get any better. The reason you have not seen much of it earlier is he did not get on base enough to be a base runner

MLBTV had some weird black out rules when I got it free for a year with MSN. I live in Sioux City Iowa which is about 500 miles from Chicago and yet games were blacked out in my area. Now that is some stupid crap.

I also couldn't watch Cubs games when they visited St. Louis, or Denver. I was basically in MLBtv hell. But if I moved 2 miles across the river into Nebraska I could get all those cities.

Thank god Dish Network picked up Comcast sports and didn't charge extra for it.

"Rob, they fixed the credit card loophole, as I found out this spring. They now go by IP address, so a proxy server would be the only way to get around that."

They must be doing both. I get blocked from watching Pitt games even though my IP address would show up outside their viewing area. I'm pretty sure this is because I use a MLB.TV username and password that has a credit card address within the Fox Sports Pittsburgh viewing area.

Eric Gagne (elbow) made 50 throws from 75 feet on Monday. Gagne said he felt great after the session. He could return to the Dodgers in as little as three weeks if his rehab continues to go smoothly.

Gagne is already ahead of Prior in rehab. Thats kind of sad.

I am curious do any of the TCR staff live in Chicago and if not how do you get watch the Cubs games unless you have the DTV package?

I catch whatever is on WGN and ESPN. The rest I listen to on XM radio since I seem to be in my car most of the time when they're playing. I just got a new job so I may spring for the DirecTV package and a Slingbox or something soon.

Ruz, have you tried to petition DirecTV? Some times you can get special permission to get certain things done for you if you call them and explain what' going on. They have the ability to un-black out the game for you if they want.

MikeC, does Dish Network have Comcast Sports Net in HD?

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  • I don't think his issue(s) will have anything to do with it. He hasn't hit since he's been back. Coghlan has the hot hand.

    Tito 1 hour 52 min ago view
  • I'm not a denier but definitely a skeptic on Strop and Grimm, who struggle with fastball control. Strop doesn't go near the ninth inning, and note how Grimm couldn't close the deal even with a 5-run lead. So Felix Pena comes in and gets the 3-pitch game-ending strikeout like it was nothing.

    And how about Almora missing that very catchable ball? That was unexpected after all the hype about his glove.

    When Trea Turner misses balls like that--which he does--I draw conclusions from it. It seems to be the one chink in his armor. But I'll give Almora another chance.

    VirginiaPhil 1 hour 56 min ago view
  • Assuming Soler is good to go, I think it comes down to 3 of the following 4: Coghlan, TLS, Sczcur, Almora. Of the 4, TLS seems to be the hardest to justify, particularly given his behavioral issues.

    billybucks 2 hours 2 min ago view
  • I'm wondering if both Coghlan and LaStella make it. With Javy being able to play all the infield spots and Joe maybe wanting late-inning D when Soler plays (assuming he plays), hence either Szczur or Almora, I think LaStella might be the odd guy out.

    Tito 2 hours 5 min ago view
  • Hendricks needs the win, anyway, plus a couple more.

    My hunch is that Hendricks wins the Cy Young . . . for Lester. That is, without Hendricks tipping the scale toward the Cubs, Scherzer tops Lester.

    VirginiaPhil 2 hours 18 min ago view
  • Old Cub fans remember when Ken Hubbs died at 22 in the crash of a small plane he was piloting in a storm in Utah in 1964. But Hubbs was not an elite power pitcher like Score and Fernandez. Score lived a long time after the accident but it was (effectively) career-ending.

    VirginiaPhil 2 hours 21 min ago view
  • HAGSAG: Since I've only seen them throw in one game and in one "live" BP session, all I can do is provide initial first impressions.

    Brailyn Marquez is listed at 6'4 but is probably more like 6'5 or 6'6. I would describe him as a younger version of Bryan Hudson, throwing a ton of ground balls but not getting a lot of swings & misses (yet). Because of his size he could eventually grow into more velocity, but right now he's mostly a pitch-to-contact guy. He generally throws strikes.

    Arizona Phil 2 hours 27 min ago view
  • Phil, do Marquez and Ocampo look like prospects?

    Hagsag 6 hours 12 min ago view
  • It helps when your defense has declared war against the H in WHIP.

    Still impressive.

    John Beasley 6 hours 13 min ago view
  • Lackey finishes with a 3.35 ERA. Currently good for 13th in the NL. Not bad for a guy signed to be a #3 starter in a 15-team league.

    He is also 6th in WHIP. Pretty amazing: Cubs have the #2, #3, #5 and #6 starters in WHIP.

    billybucks 13 hours 8 min ago view
  • Completely meaningless game, but Pena striking out Sean the Turd to with the bases loaded was very fun.

    Other than one bad game in SD, Pena has been very good. Even with that game, 9.0 IP, 13 K, 0.89 WHIP.

    billybucks 13 hours 12 min ago view
  • 101 wins...most since 1910 (104).

    neat. ...or sad. pick one. pick both. 'murica.

    crunch 13 hours 28 min ago view
  • Just looked up Grimm's stats -- after a great run, he gave up 2 runs vs. MIL then didn't pitch for 10 days. Don't remember why?

    billybucks 13 hours 31 min ago view
  • Sean Rodriguez's helmet looks like it's taking a dump

    jacos 13 hours 35 min ago view
  • Grimm not doing himself any favors lately re: making the playoff squad. Seems to have lost the feel for his curveball.

    billybucks 13 hours 39 min ago view
  • j.grimm is literally worse than hitler.

    felix pena, your turn.

    crunch 13 hours 41 min ago view