Game 124 Thread / Cubs @ Marlins (3 of 3)

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SP Ryan Dempster SP Chris Volstad

13-5, 2.92, 139 K, 62 BB, 157.1 IP
4-2, 3.03, 26 K, 18 BB, 38.2 IP
LF Alfonso Soriano SS Hanley Ramirez
SS Ryan Theriot LF *Luis Gonzalez
1B Derrek Lee 3B Jorge Cantu
3B Aramis Ramirez 1B *Mike Jacobs
RF *Kosuke Fukudome 2B Dan Uggla
C Geovany Soto RF *Jeremy Hermida
2B *Mike Fontenot CF Cody Ross
CF Reed Johnson C *John Baker
P Ryan Dempster P Chris Volstad


The Cubs end the brief road trip with a chance to win yet another series and take the season matchup with the Fish, which currently stands at three victories each.

Ryan Dempster, who is profiled by Alan Schwarz in Sunday's New York Times, goes up against 21-year-old Chris Volstad, who pitched well in an ND when the Marlins were in Chicago.

Aramis Ramirez and Derrek Lee return to the starting lineup.


Scrappy, scrappier, scrappiest...all in the same lineup.

locker combination: 9-2-17

Nice Edmonds interview before the game.

Fuck the umps and their half-assed job they do. Bring in instant replay. Absurd.


#1. Theriot can not steal third....ever.
#2. Why in the heck are they moving the runners with a power hitter up? If it's the bottom of the order, it might make sense. I just can't even comprehend what Lou was thinking.

Wow, what an utterly horrendous job of managing by Fredi Gonzalez. Removes Hermida, one of the better defensive RFers in baseball, to move Ross over from CF, but leaves one of the worst defensive OFers in L.Gonzo who botches Soriano's 2B. Then leaves Pinto in to face 4 straight rightys when sinkerballing Kensing is up and ready in the pen. That's Baker-esque.

The purpose of double switches is so that the pitcher's slot does not come up soon.

If they would have pulled L. Gonzalez, the pitcher would have gone into that slot and been up 4th the next inning.

It wasn't a defensive substitution - it was a batting order substitution.

Now... leaving Pinto in? That is a whole different issue.

going by the #s, pinto has handled righties much better this year.

but that's what happens when you manage strictly by the numbers in some cases.

I support and endorse the top of the 7th.
That was 3 years of frustration in this ballpark let loose.
Agreed DB, horrible managing by Gonzalez.

That's exactly what I was thinking. Of course, the 8 runs we scored in THIS game will never be enough to make up for the 8 runs we gave up in THAT game.

horrible managing by gonzalez....and the gonzalez who plays outfield is absurdly slow.

that was fun....i really cannot believe pinto faced all of those righties....

huge huge win to cap a great road trip. turn to TBS to watch brewers-dodgers btw, just started.

5-1 roadtrip. 5 game lead. (7.5 for playoffs)
13 of 16 coming up at home. Need to gain some more ground to make a very tough September schedule much more relaxing.

Guzman update.

3 IP's, 1 h, 1 BB, 3K's, no runs and 4/2 GO/FO.

Anyone think Pinhead and Hendry will have the zygotes to DFA Howry?

Rosters expand in less than two weeks. Howry may not be very trustworthy but he can at least be depth until October. Plus, Guzman has quite the injury history. I'm not sure how comfortable I'd be with relieving corps of basically Guzman, Samardzija, Cotts, Marmol, and Wood.

If Howry is useless, odds are he's not going to pitch meaningful innings. I can't see the advantage of keeping him around, he's a FA after the season, right?

I guess because I don't think he's completely useless. No, I wouldn't use him in a tight game (although I'm not sure Lou feels the same) but he can still be an innings-eater and throw strikes (and gopher balls). If needed, for example, he could have pitched the eighth or ninth today.

Yeah, but Guzman, Wuertz and Ascaino can all do the same thing, and more maybe give us something good for the playoffs and 2009.

True, although, at least a few weeks ago, both Wuertz and Ascanio weren't doing too well. I would certainly be in favor of seeing what they can do, however, even if it requires a "phantom" DL stint for Howry until rosters expand. Howry certainly has his faults -- the HR ball the worst of them. But what he tends to not do (and what Wuertz, Marmol, etc. will on occasion do) is just melt down and walk two or three guys in a row. I'm not really arguing to use Howry in any meaningful situation, but at least keep him around until you're sure you don't need him esp. with September almost upon us.

Are you kidding? Having Cotts, Samardzija, Marmol and Wood to cover innings 7-9 is an awesome bullpen. Throw Marshall and Lilly in there and we have a very strong relief staff built to shut teams down in short playoff series. Z, Dempster and Harden are as tough a starting 3 as any.

I agree it could be very good, but you're talking about one guy who until recently wasn't much good (Cotts), one guy who's just started his major career (the Shark), and two guys that can be lights out and can also be, albeit rarely, completely off (Marmol and Woody). Throw the oft-injured Guzman in there and you've got a potentially great but also potentially volatile bullpen.

No Gaudin?

Forgot about Gaudin. He would certainly be a stabilizing presence.

See, gets even better with Gaudin. I definitely wouldn't wanna face the Cubs if I were the other teams.

You mean 'The Buzzard'?

Colvin update too. As AZ Phil has been mentioning, he's starting to hit again now that he's taking fewer pitches. After a double and triple last night he's up to .301 .326 .545 for the 2nd half. He's ISO OBP is down from .061 in the first half.

While I am at it, Vitters has 17 hits in his last 10 games and is at .347 .385 .521 on the strength of a league leading (sheesh) 17 doubles (190 AB's), he turns 19 later this month. His 22 year old left side of the infield partner is cruising along at .314 .397 .536

NL Domination

Cubs have now won the season series with:
Los Angeles
San Francisco
San Diego

Currently leading the season series with:
St. Louis
New York

Currently Tied:

Currently Losing:


I'm with you on Guzman over Howry......I've got to believe Lou has had these discussions with Hendry: Howry/Ward replaced by Hoffpauir/Guzman.

brews score 4 to tie the game in the 9th. ho.

hung a breaking ball on 0-2 two outs...ridiculous.


Aghhhhhhhh I hate you.

Don't be trashin my boy. We needed that fantasy home run. besides, we already arranged for Ethier to win it.

there we go.
Nice save Dodgers.

Andre Ethier wins it for the Dodgers. Nice loss, Brewers!

Go Doyers!!!! (sic)

quite the long flight back from LA to Milwaukee

Cubs get yet another day off tomorrow before the Cincy series.

Monday is no day off for the Brewers who will face one of three teams to get 8 wins in their last 10 games...Astros, who are as hot as anyone but haven't gained any ground, well here's your chance 'Strohs.

The Cubs will need all the cushion they can get as the last 2 weeks of Sept are a bitch.

Cubs have won every series since the MKE sweep. Nice trend, hope they keep it up.

...we may be screwed:

"Kerry Wood, Carlos Marmol and Jeff Samardzija did a pregame photo shoot Saturday for an upcoming Sports Illustrated feature on the Cubs' bullpen."

I hope they don't end up on the cover.

In case you doubt the effectiveness of the SI curse, I offer you this.

All part of Lou's plan. We give you NASTY BOYS V2.0

Is there anything to dislike about this guy?

Except him being Canadian?

I keed.

Unfortunately I don't see how the Cubs will keep him this off season unless new ownership with big bucks come in.

This will probably his last and only chance at a big money contract and I hope he gets it.

Great road trip.

Time to sweep castrated Reds next.

Good article.

I was really impressed with Dempster's off-season work. I really hope we re-sign him.

Which brings up an interesting question...

If you HAVE to win a game-- who would you rather start: Dempster or Zambrano?

If we're facing another team's ace, Zambrano. Anyone else, Dempster.

What a minute!

Did you just call Z "a gamer"?

I didn't think that statheads believed in gamers?

Where've you been, Chad? didn't you know that there is a stat now that is used specifically to measure gamerism?

I think Chad knows all about the gaymerism stat. ;-)

So that's what they use those gaydars for. I was wondering why all of the scouts liked to talk about a player's make-up.


I am saying Dempster is more consistent. If you're confident 2 or 3 runs over 6 or 7 innings is going to get the job done, then go with Dempster. If you think you need to have 1 or 0 runs over 7 innings, go with Z, and know there's a chance that you'll lose 7-1.

As I pointed out in Parachat the other day, Z is our new stopper. Every time we get a 4 game winning streak, he stops it.

As of right now, Demp is definitely the guy I want starting when the series is on the line. He's only had one bad outing this year (2.1 IP, 8 ER vs the Sox). Otherwise, the Cubs have been in every game he pitches, and at least half of those were fairly dominating performances.

Dempster and Harden are the guys who give me the most confidence this year. Lilly has actually been quite good in terms of keeping the team in each ball game (particularly after April), but he gives up too many homers for me to feel really comfortable with his starts. Z can be the most dominating of them all, but you never know if you're going to get good Z or bad Z.

Time to sweep castrated Reds next.
You mean the Cincy "It's not my team, it's Krivsky's team"

Lefty Jeremy Papelbon has thrown AT LEAST 34.1 consecutive scoreless innings for Daytona.


rock on,

this tidbid in the morning Tribune...

Class A Boise prospects Josh Vitters, Michael Brenly and Andrew Cashner will be sent to the instructional league after their season ends.

Speaking of Brenly, I wonder if AZ Phil has any info on why a guy his size hasn't yet figured out to generate much power. He's a big dude, and he's been able to hit for average and take walks, but he has yet to take advantage of his large frame. Then again, maybe that's what they'll teach him in the instructional league. Maybe they'll teach Vitters how to throw accurately to first base while they're at it. If we get really lucky, they'll teach Burke and Harvey how to throw a changeup and a slider...

He should work with Santo. He's the one who straightened Aramis' throwing problems, right?

Well... he certainly didn't sort out his running problems.

You laugh, but I hear that ARam really has credited Santo for helping him with his footwork.

Bob Brenly is too smart to let the Cubs' minor league instructors ruin his son's swing.

mike brenly doesn't have much of an arm and isn't projected to sniff the majors, anyway.

his bat speed is pretty cruddy and he's already had multiple concussions.

I remember wondering a few years ago if anyone had ever been intentionally walked with the bases loaded. I figured it must have happened at some point, and I haven't thought about it since.

I guess it happened last night - the Rays walked Josh Hamilton intentionally to keep him from hitting a game-tying grand slam.

Ultimately, the game came down to Maddon's decision on whether to pitch to Josh Hamilton with the bases loaded and two outs. Rather than risk Hamilton hitting a grand slam that would have tied the game, Maddon elected to have Grant Balfour issue an intentional pass, which scored the Rangers' fourth run and brought the winning run to the plate in the form of Marlon Byrd. Fortunately for the Rays, Dan Wheeler came in to pitch to Byrd and struck him out swinging to end the game.

I suppose if you're going to have an IBB specialist on staff, he may as well have a built-in nickname.

I think Showalter did it to Bonds in a Dbag's game.

according to ESPN it was in '98.

LOL. Nice catch, Brick.
Grant Ball Four

Rice got walked once with the bases loaded.

Felipe Alou once decided to walk McGriff with the bases empty and a one run lead (or tie game) because he didn't want the Crimedog to hit a game changing Home Run. Of course, McGriff came around to score.


So it looks like I may be banned from BCB.


EDIT - Not banned. I was worried for a minute. :)

You've been replaced by a little chinese girl because BCB deemed you "insufficiently cute".

That's like Milwaukee banning Fielder from meat.

Or like Milwaukee banning CC from the post game spread.

Piniella can go with super-sub Mike Fontenot, who's slugging at a .519 clip and has enough glove skill to play several different positions.


If Theriot needs a night off and DeRosa is working the outfield, Fontenot has him covered at short, with Ronny Cedeno (.277) more than capable of having a big game at second.

Don't let the truth get in the way of your story angle, Mr. Hill.

another fun one..

Johnson can play center if the Cubs are hitting against a southpaw that might give Edmonds trouble (not likely, based on history) or hold down the fort in left when Soriano is down.

Edmonds with a .724 OPS vs lefties over the last 3 years, .484 this season.

Just for arguments sake, couldn't Edmonds steep decline this year in OPS vs lefties be a result of having many fewer opportunities against lefties this year so he might lose the delivery from lefties?

It's most likely to do with the fact that he got his PA's versus lefties with the Padres when he wasn't hitting anyone, but his 3 year split prior to this season show a .868 vs .724 split, with a Jacque like .225 BA against lefties.

the .724 was bad enough, just showing this year's numbers in case his idea of history was 2008.

What about:

"The third hole can be occupied by first-year Cub Kosuke Fukudome, who has chilled considerably after a fast start, but uses commendable patience to maintain a high on-base percentage. Jim Edmonds, the former St. Louis Cardinal who hit miserably during an early run as a San Diego Padre, can hit third now while answering what had been a big question mark in center field. "?

I mean, Ronny Cedeno and Henry Blanco can bat third as well... but they don't. Fukudome and Edmonds have a grand total of 0 PA's batting third. Blanco has 2 (3.500 OPS) and Cedeno has 3 (3.000 OPS). If we go by the Soriano theory, the only reason these guys aren't destined to be inner circle Hall of Famers is they haven't been given enough bats in their comfortable lineup spot.

Yeah, I think the bottom line point of the article is good. What's seperating the Cubs isn't that they have a dominant 3-4 punch, it's that they have an incredibly steady lineup 1-8. But the details he lists in the article seems pretty clear that he hasn't seen the Cubs more than a few times this year.

yeah, that too

Edmonds batted third on Saturday though. So that's a grand total of 3 or 4 PA's.

I had to chuckle here: "and many teams do worse than running out Jason Marquis as the fifth starter."

via Rotoworld...

Matt LaPorta has been hospitalized after being hit on the helmet by a pitch Monday during the United States' win over China in the Olympics.

LaPorta knocked China's catcher out of the game during a fifth-inning collision at the plate and the next inning Nate Schierholtz collided with his replacement. China manager Jim Lefebvre was ejected from the game and LaPorta was hit by a fastball in the seventh inning, as the ball deflected off his shoulder into his helmet. Pitcher Zhen Xu was ejected and the U.S. team was hit by a total of five pitches in a 9-1 victory. "He never lost consciousness," Indians general manager Mark Shapiro said. "He's been held for observation. He will have spent at least a day in the hospital." Shapiro declined to say whether LaPorta would rejoin the Olympic team once he's released from the hospital.

Need more Michael Phelps on team USA.

If it was up to me, Jim LeFebvre would be in Gitmo right now.

since the late 70s there's not many more "american" things to do than help china. we've helped make them a superpower. give that man an no-bid contract.

still...that's gonna be a hell of a Q/A he's gonna have to give if shapiro catches up with him somewhere stateside. hell, i imagine he's already had an interesting phone call or two.

"You laugh, but I hear that ARam really has credited Santo for helping him with his footwork."

I'm not laughing, that story is true. For those of us lucky enough to have watched Santo play, he was far and away the best defensive 3rd bagger to play for the team in many decades. Best offensive, too. If Santo had had access to the current treatments for diabetes, there's no telling what kind of career he would've had.

Don't they have a diabetic on the 25-man right now? Who am I thinking of...

...I think I remember an article on Sam Fuld this spring, and they mentioned that he was diabetic... Anyone else remember that?

Yep, that's right. It was Sam Fuld.

Speaking of diabetes, there are few things that freak me out more than that idea of an insulin pump.

Best story about Santo's playing days - during a crucial game, Santo started experiencing blackouts, due to his diabetes. He stayed in the game and hit a critical home run, and almost fell down running the bases.

supposedly that at bat was against Bob Gibson...he apparently saw three balls coming out of Gibson's hand and swung at the 2nd one...for a HR.

might do a check to see how many HR's Santo had vs Gibson.

Cliff Lee according to the BP numbers...pretty thorough dismantling of K-rod.

Subscription articles suck.

But Cliff Lee wouldn't be a bad pick - should win the Cy Young and an added MVP would be nice.

The AL MVP voting is tough...

You have Lee and Halliday on the pitching side.

You have Morneau, Quintin, Kinsler, Hamilton, Bradley, Youkilis, Sizemore, and ARod on the offensive side.

No one has really set themselves apart from the rest. And it is pretty ridiculous that the Rangers have three of the top eight (or so) hitters in the league this year. And the Indians could have the best pitcher (Cliff Lee) and the best all around player (Sizemore) and still be awful.

sorry, thought it was a free one.

according to WARP-1 rankings:

Lee, Halladay, Kinsler, Mauer, A-Rod, Youklis, etc

Hamilton will win on sympathy voting.

I'd probably vote Mauer. 

Cliff Lee MVP?

C'mon! If you are going to give the MVP to a guy who only plays 1 of 5 games, his team needs to win the division.

I have to admit that I like the MVP's coming from competitive teams. If Morneu were to win again, it would be the second time that he's won without being the best player on his team (though the gap with Mauer is closing). I would guess that right now it's Hamilton and Quentin, but the AL voters are even barmier than the NL voters, so it's hard to say.

agreed...hamilton/quentin are running a 2-man race for MVP right now unless the voters get 80s-itis for player evaluations of "greatness".

i dont see how mauer/mourneu would pique the interest of many voters no matter how technically sound they are this year.

From Southtown Economist

"To honor the Chicago funny-man, the White Sox - his favorite baseball team - presented a No. 1 jersey to his wife, Rhonda McCullough. Chicago Cubs superfan Ronnie Woo-Woo was also in attendance - in full Cubs uniform."


If anyone sees Ronnie Woo-Woo in full uniform at my funeral, please escort him off the premises.

Thank you in advance.

in hand cuffs.

I'd be quite happy if Woo Woo were escorted off the Wrigley Field premises. Still remember when I had season tickets, and the guy always seemed to be stationed about two seats away from me - it got so bad that I couldn't even hear myself think anymore.

"Woo! Sandberg! Woo! Sutcliffe!" Gawd awful stuff.

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