Game 35 Recap: Cubs 4, Phillies 1
A Lilly for Mother.
- Looks like a "high sky" today - very clear with lots of sunshine. Theroit did a nice job battling a very high pop fly in the first.
- Wind continues to make fly balls an adventure, as Soriano gets a second life after the wind blows his fly ball into the seats in the Third. Burrell staggered after it like a drunk toddler.
- And as a result, Soriano walks after taking a VERY close pitch off the corner.
- Top of the fourth, Ward doubles, Ramirez is safe at first on a throwing error that perhaps should have been an error on Helms, the 1Bman. Murton then guides a single into center for the first run of the game. Nice stroke by Murton.
- And how about that: A tw0-out RBI by Izturis in the fourth. Don't look now, but he has a modest six-game hitting streak.
- Not that I expected much from Lilly, but bunting with two strikes and two outs and a runner on second? Bad call.
- That said, we're paying him to pitch, and Lilly responds with a 1-2-3 inning, striking out Werth and Utley. He's making it look easy, today.
- I didn't notice, but Lilly had an Interesting Statistical Event through 4 IP. He lost it when Nunez hit a sharp groundball to second. Theriot broke right, the ball was to his left, and it got through. A base hit, but the proper break on the ball would have made it an easy play.
- With runners at first and second in the sixth, and one out, Murton gets thrown out trying to score on a single to left. Burrell fielded the ball in shallow to mid-left, threw a strike, and with Ruiz blocking the plate, it wasn't close. Philly outfielders keep gunning down Cubs runners...
- And with Izturiz getting a hit on the next AB, that's four consecutive singles, and nary a run scored in the inning, yet. Lilly up with the bases loaded and two outs. Lilly might pitch like Babe Ruth, but he can't hit like him. Inning over.
- The first "Real" hit off Lilly comes by Wes Helms, to lead off the eighth. He laces a single to center.
- The wind is still dangerous. The fly ball that results in the second out in the bottom of the eighth almost gets by Jones in center. That would have been a Cubs-like disaster.
- Don't look now, but Izturis has seven hits in the series
- Here's a good test for the Cubs: Runners at first and thirdd in the ninth, no outs, and Alfonseca pitching. Soriano strikes out, 1 out. Pagan steals second, now second and third, with one out. Theriot walks, bases loaded, one out, heart of the order coming up. It's a 2-1 game with Dempster to come into the game. A good team has GOT to score runs in this situation. DeRosa pinch-hits for Ward...... and walks on four balls! Send him to the Minors!
- Very little booing from the Philly fans on mother's day, until we get to the ninth inning when things begin falling apart for them. At that point, they begin booing everyone and everything.
listening on ESPN 1000, caller says Bill Welke will be the home plate ump today. Supposedly his reputation is for having an even bigger strike zone than last night's Phil Cuzzi. Some of the issues with bad umpiring come from an inconsistent strike zone. Hoping at least for consistency. Last night's called strike on David Ross was outright embarrassing for Cuzzi.
That might work out in favor of Kyle Hendricks, who benefits much from a large strike zone.
it's kind of mesmerizing to watch
should Theo add some Ted Abernathy videos for minor league pitching coordinator's use?
sadly, Ted passed away in 2004 from complications of Alzheimers. I always loved the Cub bullpen trio of Phil Regan, Ted Abernathy and Hank Aguirre. As a kid, I even worked on both Phil Regan (very quirky delivery) and Ted Abernathy (extreme submarine) imitations when throwing a rubber ball against a wall. It wasn't a good imitation unless I could scrape my knuckles off the ground. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for submariners.
HAGSAG: Chris Pieters was sent to instructs to develop his hitting, bunting, and outfield play (he is already a decent first-baseman).
Pieters is tall and rangy , a "long-strider" in the same mold as Trey Martin and Rashad Crawford. He is a very patient hitter (unusual for a hitter with his lack of experience) and has an outstanding (almost uncanny) eye at the plate, and he is a fast runner with unusually good baserunning instincts, and he is a good basestealer, too.
I doubt we will see Pedro in any more "high leverage" situations this series. With Hendricks and the pen today, we need Bryant-Rizzo-Castro to get going ASAP.
One funny thing to see before the game was the two submariner pitchers (David Berg and Corbin Hoffner) playing catch with each other. Both pitchers throw "submarine" even when they play catch, and it's kind of mesmerizing to watch, even for the other players.
CUBSTER: One of the points of emphasis at "basic" Instructs this year was teaching the position players the art of baserunning and base-stealing, like getting a good primary and seconday lead, reading the pitcher, cutting bases sharply, and different ways to slide to maximize the baserunner's chance to arrive safely.
Brooksbaseball.net has some interesting stats/graphs on pitch and strike zones and you can dial up individual games/pitchers. I'd love to see some comments from readers who can interpret this better than I can. I thought the Ump was really inconsistent with a very wide zone. Does this info seem to match up with my eyeball perception? Also, looking at the graphs, Lackey was not throwing as many pitches below the K-zone (certainly more above) while Lester was clearly getting his pitches down and not many above.
As I was fearing in my post yesterday, Maddon keeps trotting Strop out against the Redbirds and he constantly fails. I understand the psychology behind this, but in a series where there is a finite lock on who moves on, why does he keep riding the wrong horse?
AZ Phil: Agree, this must have been a really fun game to watch. There was a lot of base stealing going on. Are the pitchers not holding runners or is the catching still a work in progress?
Cuzzi has long been known as having the biggest strike zone among all umpires.
AZ Phil, give me a scouting report on Chris Pieters since he has become a 1B/OF.
I think it's probably hard to adjust to an ump's zone mid-game, as least for hitters. Pitchers can locate to an ump's zone, but hitters have minimal time to react.
But, whatever. Umps are going to miss calls. Let's beat up on the non-Lackey starters.
Watched a little of Mets-Dodgers.
Jason deGrom -- oh, my.
Cubs 3-4-5 hitters are 0-21 so far in the post-season.
Let's change that in a big effin' way tomorrow, boys.
Considering how players reacted it seemed pretty accurate high and wide (to righties), but not so accurate low and in. I thought the strike zone by the ump was awful, but it was consistent and the Cubs never adjusted.
Rizzo and Bryant need to have good at bats. They are really looking outclassed in these two games.
that game sounds fun as hell.