Game 2 NLDS / Dodgers @ Cubs


SP Chad Billingsley   SP Carlos Zambrano
  16-10, 3.14, 201 K, 80 BB, 200.2 IP   2008   14-6, 3.91, 130 K, 72 BB, 188.2 IP
  0-0, 0.00, 3 K, 0 BB, 2 IP Post   0-1, 4.37, 20 K, 6 BB, 22.2 IP
SS #Rafael Furcal   LF Alfonso Soriano
C Russell Martin   SS Ryan Theriot
LF Manny Ramirez   1B Derrek Lee
RF *Andre Ethier   3B Aramis Ramirez
1B *James Loney   2B Mark DeRosa
CF Matt Kemp   CF *Jim Edmonds
2B *Blake DeWitt   C Geovany Soto
3B Casey Blake   RF *Kosuke Fukudome
P Chad Billingsley   P #Carlos Zambrano


It has taken a good 21 hours of self pity and a bracing White Sox defeat to clear my head and even let me think about previewing Game Two.

Yes, last night went down harsh, but from reading Rob's post and many of the ensuing comments earlier this afternoon, it is clear that there are still some optimistic souls in Cubdom. All I can say is, God bless you all.


Starters' Records Since 8/1/08

 No-Hitters Thrown
Billingsley 5 1 62 10.2 8.1 3.5 3.34 .73 0
Zambrano 2 2 47 8.6 6.5 5.0 7.28 1.80 1


Billingsley pitched twice against the Cubs this season. On both occasions, he matched up with Ryan Dempster. Once, Billingsley threw well (7 K, 2 ER in 6 IP); the other time, he threw not as well. The Cubs won both contests.

Among Cub hitters, only Jim Edmonds has more than 10 career plate appearances against the 23-year-old Billingsley, though Fukudome, Lee, and DeRosa have all tagged him for homers.

Zambrano, meanwhile,

pitched twice against the Dodgers in 2008. In the series the Cubs swept at Wrigley, he held L.A. to a single run over eight innings, but was only spared a loss when the Cubs pushed across a run in the bottom of the ninth to tie the game, 1-1, before winning 2-1 in ten innings. Then in June, in L.A., Z was rocked for 7 runs and 13 hits in 6.2 IP as he took what was then just his second loss of the season. Five Dodgers had two or more hits that day, but Russell Martin was the chief trouble-maker, connecting for three hits, including a long homer.

Career-wise, Martin (8-for-13, 1513 OPS) and Andre Ethier (1038 OPS in 14 PA's) have battered Zambrano in limited exposure. Manny Ramirez faced Zambrano in 3 AB's when the Red Sox visited Wrigley in '05, and Carlos fanned him twice.

Do I need to point out that the Cubs have now lost seven post-season games in a row—a new franchise post-season futility record— and are 0-4 in post-season play under Piniella? No, I didn't think I did.

Finally, if it has ever occurred to you that divine intervention might get the Cubs to a World Series, you can forget it. Turns out this is all a big joke to Him.


Anyone up for a VP debate parachat--starting at 9:00?

how about that D? THAT is a lack of execution.

wow...just wow.

OK now this IS a choke job there is no other way to describe it.

I tuned into TBS hoping to watch the team with the best record in the NL this year. What the fuck is this shit?

Chokers Roll Call:

Theriot - here
DeRosa - here
Lee - here

poor Zambrano.

An absolute EMBARRASSMENT!!!!!!!!!

Should be three errors as Theriot's play was an error. Theriot can't get runner over. What a joke!!!!

I am actually embarrassed to go to work tomorrow with people knowing I am a Cubs fan.

Maybe Year 101 is our year...

Just disgusting.

And please don't tell me it's all about luck -- this is a classic choke job.

oh shit pressure is getting to them all ready

What's Theriot doing not at least trying to run to first on his strikeout in the first that got away from Martin. I thought he was all about the intangibles and grit. I demand his SCRAP card be revoked.

I said earlier today, the Dodgers can now play loose and the Cubs will likely be tight. But I don't think anyone thought they would be this tight. They looked scared.

are next hit will come from zambrano

What a pathetic series of defense for the Cubs that inning. I am surprised Z didnt murder each one them. He pitched a damn good inning giving his defense easy plays and comes out of it down by 5 runs. Un-fucking-real.

I just noticed manny appeared in this thread. Only comes around when the Cubs do poorly. What a fucking tool.

Somewhere out there in the world, Alex Gonzalez is thinking "been there, done that"

even for the chicago cubs, this is special. usually, it's just one guy who costs them.

plenty of gagging to go around tonight.

An outfielder in the game largely for his defense isn't appropriate down five runs in a must-win game; pinch hit for Kosuke Fukudome his next at bat.

With ?

Fontenot; move DeRosa to right field. Or Reed Johnson. He has played right this year? Well the Cubs have been down five runs in a must-win game this year. Fukudome is a bad baseball player

strangely confident....

I give you lots of credit. You lasted much longer than I.

THis game has sickened me so far.. I had to step away for now

The 2nd inning was like reliving the 8th inning of Game 6.

I thought the Cubs would shit the bed tonight and REALLY wanted to be wrong. I could have never imagined this is how it would go down. I figured Z would melt down...not the entire infield. Everyone of those fuckers have gotten into this shit act.

Can this be considered any thing other than a choke job?

Man, I wish we had a stud baseball player who could perform in the clutch like Manny. He is amazing!!

Nothing against Mr. Ramirez, but how "clutch" is it really to hit home runs with a 5 run lead against a team that looks completely defeated?

This series he's shown that he's great at piling on, but just hasn't been in clutch situations.

Good point BB, he did hit a HR today with a 5-run lead, but last night he hit the HR with only a 4-2 lead. And while it might not have been a "pressure situation" today, hitting well in the postseason is pretty impressive considering the stakes. But that still doesn't take away the fact I wish we had a stud player like him.

I'd say the all-time leader in postseason home runs is probably pretty clutch, and I think it all stems from how he appears completely indifferent in every situation. It could be the 3rd inning of a Spring Training game or the bottom of the 9th in game 7 of the World Series and his demeanor appears exactly the same.

I can't say the same for the swinging-out-of-their-shoes Cubs.

I wasn't saying that he is or isn't clutch overall, I'm just saying the situations where he's gone deep in this series haven't been what I would call clutch situations. In both situations, he hit them against a Cubs team that had already called it quits for the night.

I'm not saying that if he is in a clutch situation he won't come through, just that he hasn't gone long against the cubs in a clutch situation yet.

This game has been so bad so far that I'm afraid I might shit MY bed tonight.

Now our catcher can't even throw the ball back to the pitcher. Wow!

Okay, who took the "Cubs won't even be competitive in two home playoff games" bet in Vegas? Both last year and this, I was happy with Cubs playoff draw. Looks like both years will be laughers for the other guys. Amazing.

If the White Sox go farther than the Cubs, I'm moving to Alaska. At least they have a hot governor.

This is so utterly painful. Our team looks destroyed. They are hacking at pitches, driving them into the ground, and not taking any pitches.

Z looks dominant one minute and replacement level another.

Oh how this team can break my heart year in and year out.

I am so surprised anyone was happy with out playoff draw. With LAs pitching in a 5-game series it terrified me.

This is absolutely fucking atrocious baseball. Started in the 1st, Soriano on 2nd nobody out and nothing. I just don't fucking get it. Regular season turns to the playoffs and we don't take pitches, don't hit the other way, don't steal, don't hit and run, don't play defense. I mean, it's still baseball, play the same game.

if this team only had more heart...or scrap...maybe grit.


i am tired of cubs making it look like there playing
cy young in last 5 playoff games sooner or later we have to hit hopefully before march

it's amazing how much energy and emotion we put into following this team for 6 months...and just like that, it's coming close to a crashing and sudden halt.

Well, the bad news about a short series is you have no margin of error. Good news is, you win 1 game and you are right back in it.

This has nothing to do with a short series. This could be a 7 or even 9 game series and I don't think it would matter. The Cubs just appear overmatched.

Got to give it to Z - he pitched well and is the only leader on the team who stepped up. I'm so sick of seeing the pained expressions on the face of Lee or Ramirez after trying to pull yet another outside pitch. It's not exactly rocket science how to get them out when they're doing that.

Something new to complain about.... This superstitious shit. Fuck superstition. This is just bad baseball.

If they cannot advance, with the best NL record, no significant injuries, most runs scored, and all those great stats that get posted here ad nauseum, then get a GM who will DUMP some of these CHOKE-ASS MOTHERFUCKING "Nice Guys", and get top-shelf younger, faster, cheaper, and dumb about Cubdom - keep only the best of the best - the few that produce (although NONE of them seem to be able to in the Post Season).

Strangely Confident - my ass.

Zambrano was great tonight. The errors were bad. Also the Dodgers executed two great plays, the hit and run and the bunt by Furcal. Zambrano made two mistakes on pitches, the double by Martin (right into a hole in our outfield defense) and the Manny dinger. He deserved better. He was relatively composed, had good velocity and his control was pretty good.

Baseball is a funny game sometimes. The Cubs need to absorb this and bounce back.

it's amazing how much energy and emotion we put into following this team for 6 months...and just like that, it's coming close to a crashing and sudden halt.

No shit..... I hate October.

if your gonna blow something up
you can start with a new 1st baseman
next year one of the mainstays has
to go lee is my vote

My vote is for Soriano to get the bus ticket out of town...

My vote is that you go cheer for a team that you are actually a fan of.

dead team walking

Bounce back. That'd be nice but just can't see it.

I don't think any one could have predicted that Fukudome would be such a disaster. Think of all the AAAA players that could do what he's done for 500k. I was happy that Hendry landed him but damn, he's been worthless for months. I'd love to see him as a 12 million dollar 4th outfielder next season. Next season because this one has all but hit the shitter.

There were a few of us who thought he wasn't going to be any better than Murton was going to do, basically a 4th OF. But it is going to be very interesting what they do with him next year. He batted .217 in the 2nd half. I don't care how good his defense is, he would be a liability.

Kerry Wood making his final appearance at Wrigley Field in a Cubs uniform.

look at the dodgers -- can't help themselves from laughing at this shit.

i'm looking forward to seeing who can deliver the best post-game platitudes.

Fun fact: Only one team has come back from losing the first two at home. Also, Racer X is Speed's long lost brother Rex...

Can I kill Stockton now? Please??!??

What I learned in parachat:

Avoid cholera at all costs.

Wow, Lou. From the postgame conference:

"Yeah, you know what? From now on, I don't want to hear about Fukudome anymore as far as whether he's gonna play or not. I'm going to play Fontenot or Reed Johnson or somebody else and that's the end of that story. The kid's struggling and there's no sense sending him out there anymore."

About time.

Its a great quote, but from the actions speak louder than words file, if he recognizes that Fuk is struggling, then why didn't he pinch hit for him?

I'm not saying it would have changed the outcome, but at least the offense was starting to show a little life late in the game, until Fuk stepped up to the plate and K'ed looking at a down the middle pitch. It would have been nice to have at least a small late inning rally to build some sort of momentum heading out west.

Recent comments

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  • Or, he's looked exactly like Ted Williams.

  • Lately he hasn't looked like Ted Williams...

  • Reading between the lines on some of his comments he seems to know his longish swing doesn't play well with a man on third and two outs, and two strikes on him. I doubt a playoff adjustment is happening, just something he'll need to figure out next year. I have this odd feeling he will.

  • Mark Gonzales ‏@MDGonzales 4m4 minutes ago
    Bryant leads NL rookies in HRs (26), RBIs (99), 2B (31) and runs (86). Last rookie to reach 26 HR, 99 RBI, 31 2bs, 86 runs and 74 BBs?

    Mark Gonzales ‏@MDGonzales 4m4 minutes ago
    Boston’s Ted Williams in 1939

  • Surprised and bummed that Mark Buehrle is retiring. One of my all-time favorite pitchers. I think he could pitch for 5 more years.

  • Probably going to a bar/restaurant with TBS. Cord-cutting is so over-rated.

  • Thanks for the update on Underwood.

  • I know, man. What a season. 3rd best record in all of baseball, good enough to have won any division other than the one there in.

    With a win tomorrow, the Cubs will match their 2008 record. Bad omen, I know. If they do win, the most recent year in which the Cubs will have won more games would be 1945 (98-56), the last time they went to the World Series.

    I'll take that omen instead...

  • "oh yeah, and get the fuck off my lawn. :D"

    Ok, now that was funny. :)

  • KB 0-5 with 8 LOB. Really? He is torturing me with 99 RBI. He is also a very different hitter at home vs. road. I suspect most young hitters are.

  • Greinke still in for the 8th. 3 up, 3 down. After 8. 108 pitches, ERA still at 1.66 according to mlb boxscore and he's in line for a 19th win.

  • Greinke 95 pitches through 7. Gives up one run (solo HR to Hedges). ERA at 1.66. Doubt that they will let him give up 5 runs in the 8th.

    Dodgers ahead 2-1.

  • 96 wins with one game to go. Who woulda thunk it.

    Cubs 96 wins have clinched a better record than any AL team and the NL West/East division winners too.

  • cubs win, pirates lose...

  • the curse is now yours.

  • cog a HR away from the cycle after a single in the 6th.