So How Bad Was That?

It was this bad: The Cubs just scored 5 runs in 3 games (plus an extra inning) against a team that had yielded 67 runs in its previous 7 games. The Cubs hit one home run in three games against a pitching staff that shared the NL lead with the Phillies in most homers yielded per game. The Cubs went 2-for-34 with men in scoring position, both of the hits coming in the 8th inning of the series finale, long after the game and the Houston sweep had ceased to be in doubt. Ironically, the Cubs have been at or near the top of NL in batting with RISP for much of the season. The Cubs still trail the Milwaukee Brewers, a team that was, itself, outscored in the past three days, 36-10; a team that has lost eight of its last nine road games and since its last visit to Wrigley Field has gone 17-21. The Cubs are about to play four road games against a talented young team after being embarrassed by a very poor one. Bad. Very bad. Side note: Today, the Hardball Times chronicled the pitch-by-pitch batting tendencies of 32 top minor league hitting prospects. Among those listed, Felix Pie swung at more first pitches than all but three. As we were reminded tonight, this skill has made the trip with Felix from Iowa.
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That was really disgusting. I'm seriously pained by getting involved again with this team. I let myself, in 2003, get emotionally connected to the team. That year was disappointing, but warranted. This year, for a moment, I felt it was warranted. I'm not sure what has happened to these guys, but during the winning streak when we were scoring runs via single after single, I was concerned. A team showing a lack of power can not be dominant in the modern game of baseball. While our run was fortunate, it was not driven by all-around solid offense, and this foretold the lack of offense we are experiencing now.

I hope we can turn this around, but things seem to have gone from bad to worse.

http://blogs.chicagosports.chicagotribune.com...

nothing much showed up on Ohman's MRI, he'll take a day or two off and go to Iowa.

Remember when everyone complained that the Cubs were scoring too many of their runs off homers a couple years back?

Those were the days.

If Milwaukee could've just won the last four games I'd have my mind on Bourbonnais by now.

Good news is, we're somehow still in this thing, even if we've taken it across the chin in the WC standings the last four days.

This is bad.

From the Trib: "It didn't help that Aramis Ramirez was a late scratch with a sore right wrist, hurting an offense that already has been handcuffed by the loss of the injured Alfonso Soriano. Ramirez will return to Chicago on Thursday to have his wrist examined."

Returning to Chicago? Grunt. I'm going to start rooting for the Harlem Globetrotters.

This is starting to remind me of 2004 all over again! Cubs suck.

Seems stupid to send him back to Chicago to get tests done. I think Denver has one of the better hospitals in the country. Some interesting notes from the A's game:

* Shannon Stewart did not start, but got into the game as a pinch runner. The MLB trade rumors guy has him pinned as a Type B frre agent meaning we would get a sandwich pick bewtten rounds 2 and 3 if he left as a free agent. Given that he is a low salary guy it would make good sense to offer him salary arbtraition as even if he accepted he would a nice 4th or 5th outfielder to have.

* Rob Bowen hit 2 Home Runs.

i think you sit jones and floyd both tomorrow,
floyd has been awful lately start patterson ,pie,
murton,derosa ,theriot,fontenot ,lee,and kendall.

shannonstewart? maybe three years ago

Stewart has something like 35 rbi and only 54 runs scored. he's hitting for average but he only has 9hr and 13 doubles. he's losing whatever extra base pop he once had.

why does hendry only become interested in these guys when they are clearly on their downside? i think some of our kids could do as well or better and not cost anything in trade.

http://tinyurl.com/2h974v

Trib's Paul Sullivan gives alot of medical updates including:

Soriano tells close pal Felix Pie that he's improving quickly and is targeting an earlier return (before Labor Day)

Daryle Ward to join the team today and should be reactivated soon

Hank White's left shoulder is better, and a minor league stint will happen in a week (or so)

Angel Pagan's (colitis) has a bleeding ulcer and he was told to bedrest for a week with medication for the ulcer.

he’s hitting for average but he only has 9hr and 13 doubles

Jason... those nine home runs would have been the second most in the starting lineup last night.

Ugh! I hate abandoning all hope for a game after the other team gets to three.
We need offense.
And if there's not going to be any offense, at least put up a good defense so there's a chance. I'm tired of seeing Floyd stumble around in RF. I'm a stats guy and I love OBP, but when it's attached to a slow player with no power and zero defensive ability it's not the only thing.

Lineup I'd like to see with Sori out (assuming Ramirez can play as well)

SS Theriot
LF Murton
1B Lee
3B Ramirez
2B DeRosa (RF against lefties)
RF Jones (Pick a 2nd basemen against lefties)
CF Pie
C Soto

Pie should eventually resolve his struggles. Even if it's not this year , it's not like anyone else is hitting. At least put a good defense in there and a catcher who has caught more than 0% of base runners.

"Angel Pagan...has a bleeding ulcer and he was told to bedrest for a week with medication for the ulcer."

I believe with this continued Cub slump, many of us will be in the same condition.

There is no more Barrett to punch. No more Lou tirade.

I vote that Zambrano punches Koyie Hill. It worked before. Why not punch another worthless catcher? If that doesn't work, at least it will get Koyie's bat out of the lineup.

The Cubs were due to cool off. If Ramirez's injury is serious, then the sky is falling...Lou really needs to sit Floyd and Jones in Colorado. Play the best defense available and put some energy in there. The team looks flat and is really pressing-or depressing depending on how you look at it.

The good news is the Brewers are playing worse and I don't think St Louis is as good as either one of these teams.

I'd vote yes on picking up Shannon Stewart.

"Pie should eventually resolve his struggles. Even if it’s not this year"

And the sun will eventually go super nova and swallow our entire solar system. Neither seems likely to happen in time to ease my pain this season.

As much as I hate to say this, I think that DLee may need to take a game off. Once we get Ward back, I say we sit him a game to rest because he has been looking terrible the last few games. Swinging at garbage and letting pitches he should smash go by without even a glance. We need him to find his mojo (or whatever he has) and start hitting the shit out of the ball. IMO

Cooling off is one thing. This is beyond that. The team seems to be in a free fall. It is not over, of course, by any stretch of the imagination. But it reminds me of the printed statements on rear side windows, you know, objects are closer than they appear. Well, I am thinking of the opposite of that printed statement. It does not feel like we are really one game out, that we are really that good. The Cards have their problems, too. But unlike the Cubs, they seem to have some position players who are really stepping it up as the pennant race heats up. It seems like the central division is ripe for the taking by the Cards once again. What is the psychology with our team right now? Cooling off just does not seem to describe what is going on. The guys just look less confident. If it is losing Soriano then I do not completely understand it because it was not like Soriano was anything close to being on fire when he got injured.

I guess it could be worse….
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/.....=270808117

I heard that Hendry might try to get Jr. before the deadline.

Oh wait.

Here's my thought provoking analysis of Felix Pie:

Pie sucks.

Here's my thought provoking analysis of our catcher situation:

Bring up Soto.

Well with alot of changes since opening day, I imagine Lou will try something dramastic(Scottie Pippenese) in Colorado this week end.

I threw up in my mouth when they couldn't get to Woody Williams on Wednesday.

Woody Williams!!!!!!!

Thanks for bringing that back up jacos. I just threw up in mouth again at the memory of that tragic event.

We need Pie in center because I'm sick of watching our guys standing and watching stuff go over their heads. This is currently the worst outfield in the majors.

And DeRosa isn't a right fielder. Fontenot has cooled off considerably. Give DeRosa 2nd base, where he belongs, and get some consistency into this lineup, for chrissakes, lou.

I definitely would like to see DeRosa just take over 2B now, Murton take over LF, and Soriano take over RF when he comes back. I am getting really tired of lineup changes and to me it hurts the batters much more then it hurts them.

well after the second big dip in the year was corrected, and we got back to just over .500,(about end of June) I projected that the rest of the year would consist of another long dip followed by a long correction, OR the inverse (which is what it seems to be now). So I'll still stand by my personal expectation that if we've peaked and are inexorably sliding, if we end up at or above .500, I'll be grateful for a year in which at least for two months, we had either "hottest team in MLB" or "hottest team in NL" status.

Agreed on Fontenot. True he is a good bet as a .275 avg .330 obp guy off the bench. He isnt solving the problems this offense currently has. This lineup needs all hands on deck. Murton/Jack Jones/Floyd need to start in the OF on a daily basis. I don't know how he found it. But Lou has dug up the Dusty Baker lineup generator and is having far too much fun with it. Matt Sinatro needs to distract Lou while Trammell buries that damn thing in the IVy.

I think we're all starting to see Lou's blind spots now. I loved his creativeness earlier in the year and I think everyone here applauds Theriot over Izturis, but lately he's been stuck in his ways.

Floyd would be a great bat off the bench, especially when we needed to get a runner on base. I hate Floyd as anything other than a part time LF/IB starter.

I was getting frustrated with Barrett, but somehow I think I hate Kendall more. From what I've seen of Soto he can locate the 2B/SS's glove on throws and he can't be any worse offensively than what we've had out there lately.

Defense is important. Our outfield is horrible now. There's a LF playing CF, and a 2B and a statue splitting time in RF. I've seen more bad routes and balls hit over guy's heads than any fan should ever be subjected to. No matter how you slice it, this team kind of sucks at scoring runs. At least put some outfielders in who don't turn flyouts into doubles and we may have a few more 2-1 wins instead of 5-2 losses and an overworked pen.

No question about it, they've reached new levels of suckitude recently - hate to admit that the experts were right all along, but this is the worst division in baseball, no matter that the team that won the WS last year happens to be in it. Least - worst ballclub takes the division title, once again...this is not a recording.

I wonder if Barrett could clear waivers? Maybe the cubs can re-aquire his bat to help out.

"Floyd would be a great bat off the bench..."

Floyd is not a good PH.

Daryl Ward is better in the last few years.

E-Man

I too would rather have Ward up given the two choices, but my intended point was everytime I see Floyd, RF I shudder.

Pinheadiella ignoring over a hundred years of statistical evidence:

"I'm putting the wrong lineups out there," he said. "I've got to figure out who's going to get the timely hitting done."

I guess if you get paid that much money you think that the team's success depends mostly on the way you arrange the lineup.

Going to Colorado for 4 games? I know a right handed hitting right fielder who is hitting .349 .425 .758 for his career there and available for an A ball middle reliever.

That article with the minor league batters is interesting, maybe pointless, but interesting.

Oh yeah,

I meant to agree that our defense should probably be Murton, Pie and Jones over the weekend, or maybe Patterson if he is any good. Balls in Coors Field fall faster than in lower altitude parks, so the more ground they can cover the better.

I'm not keen on LouPa's work these days, but Neal, the nickname "Pinheadiella" is probably the worst I've ever heard.

our defense should probably be Murton, Pie and Jones over the weekend, or maybe Patterson if he is any good.

Actually,what does it say about the pathetic state of our minor league braintrust (the same guys who told the Cubs that Theriot couldn't play SS in the ML and Fontenot needed to be benched so Patterson could play 2B at Iowa) that EPatt came up to Chicago as an outfielder when he spent his entire minor league career at second base. As AZ PHIL has said many times, Patterson should have been moved to the outfield two years ago.

Jedi Knight said: Floyd would be a great bat off the bench, especially when we needed to get a runner on base.

There's something to that. When Floyd comes up with men on base, he's murder. But he does get a lot of walks. Pitchers are frightened of him, even though he's toothless. I think that's how Floyd keeps his average up without doing much hitting. If you go 1 for 3 with a walk and then 1 for 4, you're .285.

Use him as a leadoff pinch hitter and then run for him.

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