Archive - 2007

October 5th

TCR Game 2 Roundtable

Our [censored] Game 2 thoughts... ----------- Cubnut: If I had to condense last night's game into a single, telling snapshot, it would be the image of Ted Lilly slamming his glove to the ground after throwing Chris Young that 3-2 meatball in the second inning. That moment captured Lilly's dismal performance, lack of poise, and the frustration of watching them. It appeared to me as though Lilly couldn't spot his curveball and was determined to compensate by trying to throw his fastball 130 mph, thus all the wild-high pitches. Rob G: It seemed pretty obvious from the beginning that Lilly didn't have "it" tonight, that "it" mostly being his control. He was ever so close from escaping the second before throwing such a lousy 3-2 pitch to Young that I'm pretty sure 5 of 6 TCR Writers could have hit out. The 4-2 lead still seemed within reach but apparently this is Stephen Drew's coming out party. I'm thrilled to have been invited. If I had known beforehand I would have suggested postponing it until the spring...of 2008.

October 4th

National League Division Series Game 2: Cubs 4, Diamondbacks 8


Box Score, Play by Play, Photos

W - Davis, getting the heck out of Arizona. L - Lilly, 8 hours of sleep. Series stands 2-0 Diamondbacks Things to Take from This Game 1. Body Snatchers Davis pitched like Lilly, and Lilly pitched like Davis. Lilly didn't have command of anything, was continually battling back from behind in the count, while Davis was getting ahead (with some help from the Cubs batters) and racking up a lot of strikeouts. Just pretty clear, pretty early, which pitcher was going to have the easier time of it. 2. Trading Homers in the 2nd Soto gave the Cubs a 2-0 lead on a home run, but Chris Young came back with a bomb of a 3-run home run in the bottom half of the inning. Byrnes also tripled in a run that inning. 3. Augie Ojeda vs. the World. Ojeda is threatening to outhit Soriano, Lee and Ramirez combined. Two more hits, including an RBI single that also took Eyre out of the game with an owwie finger. 4. Need Coffee. I think this game must have set some sort of record for 3-2 counts. Wood finally came in and threw strikes, gets some quick outs. Dempster also pitched a quick inning. But wow, other than that, lots of long at bats and base-runners all night. Not much to analyze with this game. Lilly got hit hard, and while the Cubs had a runner on base every inning, the hitters repeatedly failed to convert them into sustained rallies. But it's a best of five series, not a best of 3, and we have at least one more game to enjoy. The time-for-bed details, below.

TCR Game 1 Roundtable

The Cubs first playoff game in four years ended just about as well as their last one. Your TCR writers had a little running dialogue during and after the game. -------------- Rob G: The Cubs leadoff the third with a double by Z and promptly ended the inning with Z still standing on second. On a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 is losing to the Braves in 1998 and 5 is the ball getting through Leon's Durham glove in 1984 how disappointing was that inning? Or as Cubs fans were we conditioned enough to fully expect that exact outcome. Cubnut: I was completely unphased by it. I figured Zambrano stranding Young in the first inning was a momentum boost for us. Now we're just back to even. Plus yes, we are conditioned to expect failure. Rob G: Judging by the home plate umps O'Hare size strike zone and the current groundball ratio of about 18:1 between the two pitchers, anyone else think this game will still be scoreless in the 10th? 11th? 21st? And how many pitches should Z go so he's good enough to go for Game 4 on three days rest? Cubnut: Before answering your question, Rob, I'm going to take a moment to register my upset at Drew's bomb: Crap! Regarding the pitch count question, 100 seems like a nice number, don't you think? We're at 52 pitches through four innings, so I would say we're on a nice pace. I'm more concerned that Zambrano might be the only guy in our lineup who can hit Webb, and if we put in a reliever, we'll lose Z's bat!

October 3rd

National League Division Series Game 1: Cubs 1, Diamondbacks 3

What Ifs Box Score, Play-by-Play, Photos W- Webb, well-played playoff baseball, second-guessers L- Marmol, dreams of 9th inning heroics. S - Valverde Series stands at 1-0 D-backs Things to Take from This Game 1. As Good as Advertised Webb and Zambrano were both pleasures to watch in this game. While each one gave up some baserunners, they also both managed to pitch out of modest, recurring trouble with ease. Z, remarkably, had better control than Webb, walking just one to Webb's three. 2. Plenty of chances to Second Guess There are at least three big points in the game where managerial decisions stood out. First, the decision to have Z. swing away with a runner on second and zero out in the fifth. Had he successfully bunted the runner over, Soriano's fly ball to center would have created a run. Second, the decision not to take down Theriot for a pinch-hitter (Ward, I would hope) with the bases loaded in the sixth. Theriot hit a chopper for an infield hit and RBI, who knows what Ward would have done. The most important decision, however, was 3. Pulling Z after 85 pitches Other than a mammoth HR to Drew, Z looked like he was having an easy time dispatching with the D-backs, but he got pulled after 6 innings, with 85 pitches, a walk, a run, and eight K's to his name. The rationale, which certainly is reasonable, being that Z needs to come back on three days rest, you have Marmol available in the bullpen, and Z has had a recent of history of cramps and here we are on a hot Arizona evening. Problem is, however, that.... 4. Marmol Struggles Marmol didn't have control of his breaking stuff, and when he got behind to Reynolds, had to come in with a low fastball, and Reynolds hit it out to left to break the 1-1 tie. He continued to struggle, eventually giving up a sacrifice fly to Conor Jackson. (A fly that featured the strongest throw from Jacque Jones that we've seen in two years.) The D-backs score 2 runs in the inning after Z. leaves, for a 3-1 lead. Lyon and Valverde hold the lead in the 8th and 9th, although Lyon gave up a couple of warning-track shots to Ramirez and Floyd, and Valverde walked Ward to bring Soriano up as the tying run. Soriano finished the game, and an 0-5 night, with a 6-4 forceout. Your we-need-to-win-three-out-of-four details, below.

TCR Predictions

Feel free to add your own in the comments, as you'll see we're an optimistic if not biased bunch, except Cubnut who was obviously traumatized over yesterday's fiasco. And we all seem to really like the Indians. Arizona Phil: NLDS: CUBS over AZ (4 games) PHI over COL (4 games) ALDS: CLE over NYY (4 games) BOS over LAA (3 games) NLCS: CUBS over PHI (7 games) ALCS: BOS over CLE (5 games) WS: CUBS over BOS (7 games) Cubnut NLDS D-Backs over Cubs in 4

October 2nd

Cubs Set Playoff Roster

The Cubs got around to naming their playoff roster and the only big surprise is that Craig Monroe was left off for either Ronny Cedeno or Mike Fontenot. Also Kevin Hart made the team, leaving Trachsel, Ohman and Marshall off. We shall go to war with these 25 - glory awaits thee: Starters (3): Carlos Zambrano, Ted Lilly, Rich Hill


Recent comments

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  • *shrug*

    who knows where it'll end up. they have a decent amount of excess/blocked infielders as well as c.coghlan if they want to make him there's value to get something done while keeping soler, even.

    it's a bit more muddy now that cueto is the only "hell yeah" FA pitcher left out there.

  • Yes great bat, but very shaky in the field during the playoffs. That won't go unnoticed by this Cubs front office.

  • I would hope not.

  • I fear the Shark will return.

  • So how did the Orioles GM stay cool and collected during that conversation. I imagine he was biting his knuckles quite a bit until the phones hung up.

  • I realize they need to get pitching, but I'd hate to see Soler go. He was channeling Manny in the playoffs -- laying off the low & away stuff and crushing the ball. If he can keep that plate discipline, he could be an absolute beast. Also, his perfect throw may have saved the Cardinals series. Plus, he wears #68.

    Dunno - maybe Shark/Lackey?

  • YES! A 2-way tie for first! I am willing to split the pot right now.

  • That is pretty fucking dumb.

  • "The Seattle Mariners have agreed to trade slugger Mark Trumbo to the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for catcher Steve Clevenger, a source confirmed to ESPN's Jim Bowden."

    yeah, that steve clevenger.

  • St Louis offered $30MM less than around $185MM or $26MM per year. When those type of numbers and details are released, it is rarely just pulled out of thin air. Sounds pretty legit that they put up a bit of a fight.

  • Where did you get 30ish number?

  • Close second to Ronny

  • Dumber than Ronny Cedeno?

  • runner-up seems to be as strong as in the bidding as it gets aside from winning the bid.

    STL has money to spend, but how much they were willing to spend was up in the air...and now they threw around a 30m-ish offer to a top FA pitcher.

  • You believe they were in the bidding, I have an ice rink on Clark to sell you

  • Oh God, no Adam Eaton he's dummber than a bag of wet hair. keep him awsy