Game 152 Thread / Cardinals @ Cubs

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SP Adam Wainwright SP Carlos Zambrano
9-3, 3.20, 84 K, 26 BB, 121 IP
14-5, 3.41, 127 K, 65 BB, 182.1 IP
       
CF *Skip Schumaker LF Alfonso Soriano
LF Ryan Ludwick SS Ryan Theriot
1B Albert Pujols 1B Derrek Lee
2B Felipe Lopez 3B Aramis Ramirez
3B Troy Glaus CF *Jim Edmonds
RF *Adam Kennedy RF Mark DeRosa
SS *Aaron Miles 2B *Mike Fontenot
P Adam Wainwright C Henry Blanco
C Jason Larue P #Carlos Zambrano

 

In his post-game press conference Thursday, a giggly Lou Piniella implied he was planning to go out last night to tie one on in celebration of the spectacular comeback victory. (I believe the exact quote was, "This is going to be a bad night for me.") It's a relief then, looking at today's lineup, to see Lou didn't stumble into the lockerroom still drunk and blindly pencil Koyie Hill into the leadoff spot as his second baseman or give a spot start to Michael Wuertz.

Geovany Soto gets the day off owing to irritation of a joint in his left hand. He is listed as day-to-day.

Our man Zambrano makes his first start since last Sunday's no-no at Milwaukee. I took a look at the last ten National Leaguers to throw complete game no-hitters before Zambrano to see how they fared in their very next outing.

First of all, the ten pitchers constitute a fairly motley crew, with luminaries like Randy Johnson, A.J. Burnett, and Kevin Brown mixed in with much lesser lights like Bud Smith and Jose Jimenez. In other words, the ten are hardly are a perfect list of comparables for Zambrano.

Anyway, in their first, post-no-hitter starts, these pitchers averaged a little over 6 IP, with about 6 hits and 3 ER allowed, for a cumulative ERA of 4.18. Combined they won 5, lost 3, and had a couple of ND's. Also, these 10 NL pitchers, who averaged 112 pitches in their respective no-hit games, averaged about 104 pitches in their first games following.

I'm not sure how instructive any of this is—as I said, it's not a great list of comps for Zambrano. What's more I don't know that any of these pitchers was fresh off a bout with rotator cuff tendinitis, which raises what is probably the most important aspect of this afternoon's game as it relates to the Cubs' World Series-winning prospects: gauging how well Zambrano has bounced back after a 110-pitch start.

One other thing to keep your eye on in this series: whether or not Tony LaRussa, who strikes me as being insane, decides to exact "revenge" on the Cubs and Ted Lilly, Saturday's scheduled starter, for Lilly's clean takedown of Cards catcher Yadier Molina last week in St. Louis. (I put revenge in quotes because I don't personally understand why a completely fair home plate collision would beg for some sort of vengeance, but I believe in TLR's world, it just will.)

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Comments

we hope....

Go Cubs Go!

Get well Geo, we need you.

He should have the day off anyways.

LaRussa is a douche.

Add Z to the bad list after a no-hitter.

Yikes.

They need to start carrying tranquilizer darts in the clubhouse for when Z comes unglued. It never bodes well.

In case you're wondering, Zambrano was just as bad as that quick five-spot in the first indicates.

He had ZERO command of the strike zone.

gameday shows mostly low 90's on Z, a couple in the 94-95 range though.

Fuck.

Time for another shot, Carlos.

why is he so bad? what is happening?

wow. this is impressive suckage.
Guess you gotta shut him down until the playoffs and hope he is strong out of the gate.

My hope is this is just the result of a week of crazy giddiness and too much off the field distractions following his no hitter.

Can you start Z in game 1 after an outing like this? I wouldn't think so.

This is a particuarly curious comment.

"Guess you gotta shut him down until the playoffs"

"Can you start Z in game 1 after an outing like this? I wouldn't think so"

Do you want to shut him down, or have him make another start to 'right the ship'?

Not sure what the confusion is with that particular post you responded to.

The two things I said were not in contradiction with one another.
1. Shut him down until the playoffs.
2. Don't start him in game 1. (meaning start him in game 2 or 3)

However, after thinking about it more...I think maybe he should get one more start to make sure he has some confidence going into the playoffs.

2nd inning

It's hard to believe this is the same guy who pitched that gem in Milwaukee.

It's like Z caught Howry disease. Over-the-middle-of-the-plate-itis.

Hurt? Bad? Both?

definitely bad, not sure about hurt.

Had no command whatsoever...

Anywhere from 90-95 on his fastball, so I don't know.

Kennedy asked for a trade today. I guess he was trying to help increase his worth.

from Lou...

Z tries to walk off the mound before Lou gets there to take him out and Lou points to the mound and tells him to get back the fuck up there.

Then proceeds to take him right out.

Z is a mental midget.

God this is our # 1 for the playoffs.

Was Z out partying with Lou last night?

The no-hitter was great fun, and I guess you had to let him go for it, but pitching a complete game after 2 weeks on the DL seems a bad idea, in hindsight.

What the Fungus? If it's physical, I am concerned and could understand, but if it's mental, I am concerned and annoyed. Someone tell El Toro38 he can take his mental health break in November.
I just hope and pray that Carlos and the rest of the Cubs have the Mental tenacity to see this thing through. I'm not so sure they do. I would feel better if they went back to working pitch counts at the plate. Oh yeah, they have to actually be AT the plate, not hte deadbirds.

Not good, but Z should get another start before the end of the year. Let's see how his arm feels and whether he can put a good effort together then.

The one good thing about this game is that I didn't buy tickets to go to it.

So... Z threw the OPPOSITE of a no-hitter today? Neat.

You gotta wonder if maybe, after the last start, he came out today a little tight, as if he were trying to continue the streak. He puts a little forced heat on the fastball and it straightens out and catches the plate.

Reaching for straws, probably. Definitely discouraging. Considering recent results, but minus the no-no, I'm almost tempted to go Dempster, Harden, Lilly for the playoff rotation.

C'mon, the game is being televised AND it's on gameday.
Speculating that his fastball was "straightening out" when it actually was breaking 4-7 inches is just wasting time and probably killing brain cells all over the country.

Z had no command of the strike zone. His pitches were just sliding into the middle of the plate with alarming regularity.

And speaking of crap pitching. What is Guzman doing on the active roster? We already have one Howry.

Yeah, that fucking Guzman with the 0.00 ERA really is crappy. I mean, if he were any good his ERA would be like -6.00 or something. When you put him in the game he should take runs away from the opposing team.

Guzman has a 0.00 ERA? I'm missing the joke, or you are very confused.

Angel Guzman has a 9.63 ERA

What Guzman are you talking about?

I mean... 0.00 and 9.53 are pretty close, but come on.

Angel Guzman's WHIP is also 1.77 and his ERA+ is 47.

Pretty sure all of those would meat the definition of crappy.

A bad start after an amazing one, and there's at least one suggestion to take him out of the playoff rotation...

Nice sense of perspective.

Nice sense of perspective.

If that's aimed at me, I said I was tempted not that I would necessarily do it.

You have to admit though that Lilly, Dempster, and Harden have all been better than Z for the last 5 or 6 starts now, so it's not as if it's just this start alone. Something's wrong, whether's it more tendinitis/dead arm, something worse, or something mental (which is maybe worser still). Still, you can't discount his propensity to pitch big in big games and his status as our perennial ace. Let's see what his next start brings before any rash decisions are made.

P.S. One way or the other, I hope we're beyond the idea of starting Marquis in a playoff rotation.

I can't second guess Lou for leaving Z out last start, you just don't pull a guy who is 6 outs from a No-Hitter.

I would like Z to be skipped a day, and pitch next Thursday. Marshall can make his scheduled start Wednesday. We have the bullpen arms to go to a 6-man rotation. If anyone else needs to make a start, we could use Randy Wells.

double post

Hey knuckleheads. I will bet money that Z was still on a cloud and was not mentally prepared for this game. His pitch count was not excessivly high last time around.

i would have bet money that he shit the bed today. Ok, not as bad as he did, i would have predicted

4ip 5 er 4bb 4ks

"I would have predicted".

Too bad TCR doesn't allow any predictions.

Any chance the Brewers will figure out a way to lose 2 games today?

It was partly directed at you, because you had the thought of skipping Z.

Harden wasn't lights out yesterday, he just didn't pay for it.

My point was that I find the Z stuff a bit ledge-jumpy. I would think a no-hitter where he appeared pretty damn healthy and, as Chad pointed out, didn't throw a ton of pitches would give him some benefit of the doubt. I was wrong, apparently.

The only way Marquis gets a playoff start is due to someone else's injury.

So you are upset that people don't have perspective because they are judging Z by one game...when you are doing the exact same thing.

Remember what happened before the no-hitter? He sucked for a full month.

I do think and hope that this result was the result of just being amp'd and distracted all week after the no-no, but I think it's reasonable to question which is the "real" Z, and if he can be trusted in the critical game 1 of a short 5 game series.

Personally, I absolutely keep him in the rotation for the playoffs, no doubt. but I tend to think Cubs would be better off if he pitched game 2 or game 3.

Not intending to defend Tito's logical troubles there, but I just want to point out there's no difference between games 2 and 3 in the playoffs. Both games are going to be played and both pitchers won't pitch again in that series.

NLDS game 5 is scheduled 5 days after Game 2 I believe and could go on 4 days rest. That does mean the Game 1 starter would have to go on 3 days rest in Game 4 or maybe the Game 2 starter just comes in relief in Game 5, but he definitely could pitch again.

11-0. It's time to get Howry in there to see if he can "straighten it out" and "turn things around".

Prince Fielder's answer to the number of pounds he's dropped since goin vegan-
http://thebiglead.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/p...

Gooz continues to be a tease.

Actually, more of a myth than a tease.

Dempster has been their most consistent pitcher all year, always keeps them in the game and doesn't have a history of mental breakdowns. I would go with Dempster #1 and Z #2 -- Z might do better with a little less glare on him.

Guzman is not a tease nor a myth.

He is a BUST.

Well, first of all, I'm not the least bit upset. Secondly, I'm not judging him on just the no-hitter. I'm judging him on his body of work, while acknowledging that he's had a health issue. The health issue may or may not be overblown in here. I lean toward the former.

He had a bad August. He had one last year, then pitched very well.

yes, last year he had a good September. It was absent of any 1.2 IP, 8ER outings...unlike this year.

So, the question is, do we ignore all of August, and ignore 1 start in September, and just assume because last year all ended fine, that this year will too? Or do we actually look at his "body of work" and see that maybe there is a problem here...and maybe it's worth discussing the risk associated with not knowing which Z we are going to get in the playoffs. I think that's an extremely valid question and concern. But that doesn't mean I know the answer.

Outing...singular.

I'm not assuming anything. I'm just saying I found it odd that he has a bad start after a no-hitter and all of a sudden the hand-wringing begins anew. It's like the no-hitter never happened. And I'm not saying that just because he threw a no-hitter that means he's going to duplicate that in the playoffs.

There may be a problem, but it seems like more people assume that than try to see that this one start could be a blip.

And don't forget, his "body of work" also includes April, May, June and July, not just August and one bad September start.

I'll zip it now, since I'm clearly in the minority about this.

1. You are certainly not in the minority of those who think Z should start in the playoffs, I could pretty much guarntee that. But again, I'm not saying he shouldn't.

2. Yes, I do think this start was a "Blip" in and of itself, and there are a lot of non-baseball factors that could explain it away. The question is, which was more of a "blip", this start or last start? I tend to think both were blips....and that's the exact concern. I don't know which Z we'll get in the playoffs. That's why I believe we should start Demp in Game 1, and Z in game 2.

Does anyone else actually want Howry to get shelled, so Lou finally gives up on him before the playoffs, before he can REALLY do some damage?

Is that wrong of me to think that?

Cardinals have 18-- count 'em-- hits today and 6 walks.

Adam Kennedy 4 for 5 with a 3-run bomb, a double and 5 rbi. That's just embarrassing.

Z on radio WSCR-
His grandmother died and he made a trip to go see her.
He went Venzuela on Wednesday am got back last night.

Wow!

He was jet lagged and his legs were tired.

poor guy, that's tough... 

wow, now I feel bad for him. 

Then why the hell did he pitch?

Push his start back a day or two!!

my thoughts exactly.

f lou.

If he flew back and forth from Venezuela, shouldn't his arms have been tired and not his legs.

I've burned through a passport in my times, but I wouldn't pretend to travel as much as MLB players. That being said, if you go someplace for a day, then come back, you're not jet lagged. Jet lag comes from going someplace where the sun sets 3+ hours different from where you live. Caracacs being an hour and a half different from Chicago wouldn't qualify.

Listen bucco! I just visited the baltic sea, one stop being Copenhagen . I know plenty about jet lag.

I never said jet lagged. but long travel is tiring. You don't sleep well on planes (at least i don't) and I'm not talking about passing out on ambien. Travel makes you tired. It's fact.

"He was jet lagged and his legs were tired."
"Lou should have pushed him back"
"My thoughts exactly"

Don't disagree that travel is tiring, just not to your legs, nor, if you're going north-south, does it give you jet lag.

Traveling can be very tough on your legs....just as sitting in an office chair all day can do bad things to your legs if you don't get up and stretch once in awhile.

You can have jet lag flying North South. If you fly through the night, it throws your schedule off. Even flying during the day can throw your eating, sleeping and excersize schedule off.

Anyway, that's all semantics.

I take Zambrano's comments to mean he was generally tired...and when you are tired, sometimes you don't feel strength in your legs and can't get your legs behind you even if your arm is feeling just fine.

I've flown to Colombia a few times from the Midwest and let me tell you it sucks. You fly 3-4 hours from Chicago to Miami, then it's another 3-4 across the Sea to South America. He worked out Wednesday morning. Left for the airport. Then spent all day Wednesday in a plane. Spent Wedneday night greeting greiving family members. Thursday morning/afternoon was probably funeral services of some sort. Then he takes a late flight back to the states on Thursday. He probably spent an hour just standing in line in customs on the way back. He probably gets home in Chicago at midnight or later. Then wakes up and gets ready to pitch at 1:00. I would be exhausted.

nor, if you're going north-south, does it give you jet lag.

That's correct.

travel is tiring, just not to your legs

The "not your legs" comment is nonsense.

Something else to note: airline travel causes dehydration, and dehydration can lead to fatigue. Zambrano's issues with dehydration are well-documented.

maybe a dude from Venezuela just used the wrong term and meant he was tired, or maybe he didn't even say that at all since you're basing your rant off what jacos said on WSCR.

"My legs didn't respond when I was warming up in the bullpen," Zambrano
said. "You do the best you can to battle in the game and give your team
a chance to win the ballgame, and I didn't do that. It's over with, and
we're in a good situation and we can clinch tomorrow or the next day.
We have to come ready to play." 

said he flew after Wednesday's morning workout and came back Thursday night...

He also took the trip to say goodbye to a dead family member who he was apparently close to. Admirable and respectful thing for a young, wealthy man to do.

I, among others, have issues with Z's mental makeup at times.

But, for me, this is a totally different ballgame.

Try and find Lou's post game interview.

He was asked why Z was not pushed back?

"Who would have I started?!?"

Reporter-"Marshall"

Lou rolls his eyes.

Priceless

Lou was dumb to start him today given his travel and the magic number being 2. With a 40 guy roster there is no reason not to find a spot starter. why risk a injury with are ace? As for the Game 1 starter it should be Dempster because he is nearly unbeatable at Wrigley and gives us the best chance to win at home. As for the rest of the rotation it depends on who we play if it is the Mets or Dodgers I would go Harden, Z, Lilly, if its the Phillies I would go Lilly, Z, Harden as I dont trust Lilly at CBP.

lol!

He apologized to Lou for walking off mound early.

why is it when people can't point to something physical with someone...even if they don't know for sure it is...that it's gotta be mental?

it's thrown around with very little but speculation as a stock answer for the unexplained.

maybe it is mental...maybe it's physical...maybe he's addicted to speed and this is a bad day for him...maybe he's lost a bunch of loot in the market at his mind isn't on the game...maybe he just had a bad day...maybe the clubhouse guy got the wrong kind of gum...maybe his family is being dicks to him...maybe its aliens.

5 days ago Z was "back", large and in charge, and no one was questioning whether he was playoff ready.

Well, it could very well be physical, but with Z there are a lot of mental issues to go around. You can just see out on the mound when he's breaking down, getting angry, yelling at himself and at umps. He obviously has a large temper and when he starts doing stupid things it can easily snowball. That's the mental part I worry about. Can he handle the pressure of the playoffs?

Why do I think Z is a mental headcase?
Because I've been watching him pitch for 5 years or so.

Other than that, not sure what you are trying to say. I know others may feel otherwise, but I wasn't sold that his no-hitter wiped out all of August and meant we had nothing to worry about.

Anyway...the news about his grandmother is very sad, and it certainly makes for a good explanation as to why he was so off today.

Give him a start next week, have him throw 60-70 pitches to hopefully make sure his confidence is back...then get him ready for game 2.

He's always been a Jekyll and Hyde - type of player, but more Jekyll, so I'll take it.

3-0 in the first.

Votto hates them too.

setting it up perfectly for the clinch tomorrow.

5-0. They are simply dead in the water.
Don't think getting rid of Yost with 15 games to play was the answer to their prayers.

Dusty reducing the Cubs' magic number!?

Let's get it tomorrow!

Myers stinking up the joint for Philly. 5H, 5R, 0 outs in the 1st.
5-2 Fish.

Wow, am I glad I missed this game.

Looks like we get to celebrate on the field, tomorrow. Go Reds.

Tomorrows game is a must see. The brewers play at the same time so as they post scores the crowd will go wild.

...and it's on Fox's feed for the east (NC part of "east", anyway).

woo.

stupid fox saturdays...

directv guide tells me that fox will carry cubs cards here in los angeles tomorrow!

Here in Seattle my Directv guide says I have the Rays/Twins...ugh! Fox should show the Cubs clinching game all over the country. Hopefully they'll at least break away to the Cubs game so I can see the final outs and some of the celebration. I hope the Superstation shows live celebration.

Speaking of jet lag, I left on vacation on the 10th, having seen the cubs losing 8 of nine and the lead down to 4 games.
-Stayed far away from the internet, afraid of what I would see.
I come home to find an 8 game lead, the denouement of a no hitter, and the extra inning come from behind victory!

I think that you guys should take a collection to send me back to europe for the entire month of October. :)

This may be old news, but if you haven't heard Eddie Vedder's new song about the Cubs, stop what you are doing and listen to this.

http://hirejimessian.com/wp-content/media/Someday%...'ll%20Go%20All%20The%20Way%20(quality).mp3

Don't let anyone say that it's just a game.
For I've seen other teams and it's never the same.
When you're born in Chicago, you're blessed and you're healed.
First time you walk into Wrigley Field.

Our heroes wear pinstripes; heroes in blue.
They give us the chance to feel like heroes too.
Whether we'll win, and if we should lose,
We know someday we'll go all the way.
Yeah, someday we'll go all the way.

We are one with the Cubs, with the Cubs we're in love.
Yeah hold our heads high as the underdog.
We are not fair weather but foul weather fans!
We're like brothers in arms in the streets and the stands.

There's magic in the ivy and the old scoreboard.
The same one I stared at as a kid keeping score.
A world full of greed I could never want more.
Someday we'll go all the way.
Yeah, Someday we'll go all the way.

And here's to the men and the legends we've known.
Teaching us faith and giving us hope.
United we stand and united we'll fall.
Down to our knees the day we win it all.

Yeah Ernie Banks said, "Oh let's play two."
But did he mean 200 years?
In the same ballpark, our diamond, our jewel.
The home of our joy and our tears.

Keeping traditions and wishes made new.
The place where our grandfathers' fathers they grew.
A spiritual feeling if I ever knew.
And if you ain't been I am sorry for you.

And when the day comes, when that last winning run,
And I'm crying and covered in beer.
I'll look to the sky and know I was right.

To think someday we'll go all the way,
Yeah, Someday we'll go all the way.

I am much too punk rock to be moved by such a thing as Eddie Vedder (pfft!) taking the tune of "A Hard Rain's a-Gonna Fall" and...what? No! That's not a little tear in my eye...nope...naw...SHUT THE HELL UP GO AWAY

Ha, I had a similar reaction, but by the time he hit the last stanza I was in full goose bump mode.

is it that easy to make a grown man shed a tear?
I guess a 100 years of hope can do that to you.

Use instead of "Go Cubs, Go"? I think it could work.

But yea, wow.

Wow.

Not a PJ fan, but wow, what a tune!

Fuck 'Go Cubs Go.'

I still prefer "Dying Cubs Last Request"

Blah blah blah, you can call it While My Guitar Gently Weeps and it still sucks.

Ok, everybody draw three cards, I called it first.

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