Cubs September Swoon

Another day, another disappointing Cubs loss....

One of the many sad parts of this run of losing is that the Cubs have been competitive in all but one of these games. Scores of 5-2, 5-3, 3-0, 9-7 (11 innings), 3-0, 10-2, a 14-9 win, then back to back 4-3 losses. The pitching hasn't been great, but good enough to win a couple of those games. The bats though have certainly struggled since August 30th:

Player  BA  OBP  SLG  OPS 
Soriano  205  295  513  808 
Lee  364 432 424  856 
Edmonds 176  364  353  717 
Johnson  200  250  200  450 
Fukudome  176  300  176  476 
Ramirez  216  237  297  534 
DeRosa  219   306 406  712 
Soto  382  400  529  929 
Theriot  303  361  394  755 

 

A few of our regulars are performing adequately, but no one is really on much of a hot streak. The only one that screams to be benched is Fukudome and we have seen his playing time dwindle lately. Out of the bench guys, Fontenot has a .771 OPS and Cedeno 1.303 out of anyone that has gotten some AB's. 

And while every Chicken Little sports reporter out there is just dying for another Cubs collapse so they can wax poetic about the 1969 and 2008 Cubs, the magic numbers have continued to go down over the last week for the 2008 team. The same can't be said for the 1969 club who watched the Mets bullrush past them in the standings when they lost 12 of 13 including 9 straight at one point and a five game lead turned into a 4.5 game deficit. The 2008 team has lost all of one game in the standings thanks to the Brewers suffering their own, far more worrisome, meltdown.

That isn't to say there's nothing to worry about, but it is to say that the baseball gods seem to be showing some restraint on our poor, fragile Cubs hearts. 

 

Comments

Brewers take the lead in the bottom of the 8th...4-3.

Torres time!!! 

Brewers win...sigh.

From the previous thread:

I hate David Weathers.

He always gets the Cubs out with his crap stuff.

He just blew the game in the 8th inning.

A Reds sweep, beating CC, would have been very demoralizing to the Brewers.

Now they have an uplifting come-from-behind late inning win.

I hate David Weathers.

Sabathia with back to back no decisions. His next outing will be Tuesday at Wrigley (he misses the Phillie series)

If the Cub rotation is Lilly, Harden (vs StL), Marquis, Dempster, Z (or Z/Dempster), (vs Houston),

the brewer series will be: Lilly vs CC, Harden vs Sheets and Marquis vs Parra.

but who knows what's going on with Harden or Z that far into the future.

Despite today's Weathers-izing, the Brewers 10-game homestand ended at 3-7, including 3-4 vs. the Padres and Phillies.

That is a gift.

fwiw...

Sean Gallagher started for the A's in his first outing since returning from the DL, in a 5-2 Oakland win.

4IP, 0 H, 6 BB, 6K...pitch count 88.

obviously a no decision (4 inning start). EPat had an rbi single and 3 K's...former Cub (in the Kendall trade) Jerry Blevins pitched the 5th, giving up the two runs Detroit got.

The only worry I have about the Brewers is that we have to face them 6 more times this year. If we go 1-5 in those 6 games, we could be in trouble for the division title. But I still think even the Cubs can't below an 8 game lead in the loss column for the WC with 18 games to go.

The Brewers take 5 of 6 from us? Have you been watching them play during the Cubs slump? I'm sure their fans would be optimistic to see them split those remaining 6 games.

The last time we were starting to panic about the Cubs, they took 4 straight from the Brewers.

This, too, shall pass.

Billybucks: (continued from last thread).

Your points are well taken about Cubs hitting. And I will concede that Z issue is not the sole reason for the collapse.

But, while not scientific, I think time may prove my theory somewhat. If Z comes back strong in his next outing and the Cubs go on a run . . . would that lend any credence to the theory that his struggle and subsequent injury had a more severe impact on team confidence than you thought?

Also I think in a way your angle is a bit more cynical. Ultimately I agree with the fairly popular logic that if Z and Harden are healthy we make a run at the Series. If not: no chance.

Whereas what I hear you saying is that Cubs have been masking poor hitting in the second half by a couple of hitters having hot streaks and that ultimately they are not that good at the plate? And that the pitching is fairly interchangable since Marshall and Marquis are pitching well. Is that a fair summary?

Wasn't me, but OK.

haha. sorry dude.

No problem.

It could have been much worse.

It was blockhead, who still thinks btw that you are saying EVERYTHING is Z's fault. Apparently he still hasn't seen the light that one thing can domino into many things. That one bad thing can start a string of many bad things but not necessarily be the direct cause of all those things.

That's true enough, but there's no way to really prove it, which implies that it could have been something else entirely. Maybe they all got the shits from eating spicy Thai food and a pall set over the clubhouse ever since. Maybe Lou's hemerroids are acting up and he's been more bitchy lately creating more pressure in the player's minds. Maybe some of the guys struggling have nagging injuries that we don't hear about. Maybe it's been Wood and Marmol's return to mortalhood that's weighing on the team. I just don't like the idea that if Zambrano is pitching, no matter how crappliy it is, the who team thinks that all is right in the world. They, just like us, are not stupid.

A little distraction...

In what year was the Famous Wrigley Field Marquee painted it's current red color? What color was it before this?

(no physical prize for getting this right, but on your deathbed, you will receive TOTAL consciousness)

...I'll be back in an hour.

Total guess...

1942 and Green.

it was hideous brown...

year..dunno..i'll guess 20,000 BC.

according to my Cubs 2008 desktop calendar...

The marquee used to be fern green until it was repainted red in 1960.

looks like manny's reward will be semi-consciousness

I'd love to see a picture of it in green (hold the photoshop, please) but it seems like most of the photo's from the 1950's or earlier posted on the net are B&W

Brandon Lyon blows a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the 9th vs SF after the Dbacks got a 2 spot to take the lead in the top of the 9th. Must be crushing given how things have changed in the west.

also Phils lose late to the fish, who scored one in the 8th to take a one run lead and 3 in the 9th to ice the game.

Recent comments

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  • Don't know if Cubs will recover from "spanking" Gordo

    http://chicago.suntimes.com/sports/cubs-sent-home-...

    jacos 1 hour 6 min ago view
  • 2nd in defensive WAR, NL.

    6th in NL in RBI

    Go complain about something else, like, "they never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.

    The E-Man 13 hours 33 min ago view
  • Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.

    billybucks 14 hours 48 min ago view
  • Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.

    billybucks 15 hours 32 min ago view
  • There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!

    billybucks 15 hours 33 min ago view
  • Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.

    billybucks 15 hours 34 min ago view
  • Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.

    Jackstraw 15 hours 37 min ago view
  • Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.

    Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.

    billybucks 15 hours 38 min ago view
  • Baez still learning

    jacos 16 hours 5 min ago view
  • heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.

    he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.

    crunch 17 hours 9 min ago view
  • stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.

    that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.

    crunch 18 hours 15 min ago view
  • brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.

    crunch 19 hours 4 min ago view
  • Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.

    VirginiaPhil 23 hours 35 min ago view
  • video of Maddon.

    http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561343809737202839-4

    always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.

    Rob G. 1 day 14 hours ago view
  • from Muskat:

    #Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs

    Rob G. 1 day 14 hours ago view
  • http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561339391889382475-4

    Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.

    Rob G. 1 day 14 hours ago view