Archive - 2008
Hello again from Des Moines, the soggy branch office of the Chicago Cubs National League ballclub.
A bizarre homestand that began last weekend with a flood-delayed game played behind closed doors as a public safety precaution ended last night with the season's largest crowd witnessing the latest episode in the unraveling of Rich Hill.
One night after Sean Marshall required only 87 pitches to get 24 outs, Hill scatter-gunned 45 before he was taken into custody after a mere two-thirds of the first inning.
W - Wood (4-1), back-to-back jack winners, Aramis Freakin' Ramirez, A day's worth of bragging rights, listening to stunned silence of Hawk and DJ
L - Linebrink (2-2), Blithering idiocy, Hawk Harrelson, listening to blithering idiocy, listening to three hours of Hawk Harrelson's blithering idiocy
Things to Take from This Game
1. Quality starts by the lefties
Lilly continued to have problems with the Home Run ball, giving up a solo shot to Dye in the second and a two-run blast to Pierzynski in the third. Those wound up being the only runs the Cubs gave up, as Lilly worked out of trouble in both the fifth and sixth. Danks had a stronger game, striking out five and walking none, and left with a 3-1 lead. He only gave up a run-scoring GIDP to Lee in the first. However...
2. No Contest in the Battle of the Bullpens
Dotel came in for the seventh, and promptly surrendered back-to-back jacks to Lee and Ramirez. Howry by contrast got the last out of the seventh and had an easy eighth, while Wood survived a near-miss home run that only registered as a leadoff double, and got out of the ninth without damage. That set up the bottom of the ninth, where...
3. Ramirez Walks Off
Aramis hit his second home run of the game, this one off of Linebrink and to dead center into the juniper bushes. Cubs win a great game, 4-3.
The "why did you miss this game, and need to rely on my thrilling recap?" details, below.
Daryle Ward went 2-3 and scored a run, and Sean Hoorelbeke and Dwayne Kemp drove in two runs a piece with RBI doubles, as the AZL Cubs and AZL Angels played to a 5-5 tie at Fitch Park Field #3 this morning in what was a final tune-up for AZL Opening Day on Sunday.
Ward, who played 1B and hit 3rd in the order, left the game amidst the usual handshakes, hugs, and kisses that accompany a "rehabber" leaving for the airport in the middle of a game. Whether DW will end up in Iowa or Tennessee is apparently still TBD. But if all goes well at who knows where, Ward is supposed to rejoin the Cubs next week In Chicago.
W - Balfour (2-0), getting out of Tampa
L - Marmol (1-2), 7-run sevenths.
Things to Take from This Game
1. Shields was fantastic
Shields pitched a fantastic six innings before giving up a run in the sixth on a Fontenot double, and leaving with runners on 2 and 3. The relievers allowed both inherited runners to score on a bloop by Fukudome and a seeing-eye bouncer by Theriot. Though he technically gave up 3, Shields was much more dominant than that for most of his outing.
2. Gallagher was terrific
Gallagher also pitched very well, with a particularly impressive live fastball. The Devil Rays successfully extended several at bats, with the same sort of grinding approach that we've enjoyed watching the Cubs employ for most of the year. Gallagher still managed to get through six, and worked out of a couple jams. A very encouraging outing by Gallagher, who only gave up one run, and that came on a double play that followed an error by Lee.
3. Marmol and Eyre were.... uh...
Marmol comes in to protext a 3-1 lead in the seventh, and goes walk, walk, hbp, hbp. Eyre comes in and goes Grand Slam to Crawford, triple, double, sac fly, double. Marmol was missing with his slider, both the HBP coming on sliders that got too far inside. Eyre was just bad.
The "we never again have to listen to pundits pointing out that the Cubs are the only team to not have a three-game losing streak this year, there, are you happy, Cubnut?" details, below. :)
Javy's grunge dive into the stands for the popup was awesome - the hitting into the double play not so much
Third time I've tried to post this (forgive me if it winds up appearing three times)
Junior Lake, batting 9th and playing RF for the Blue Jays...
*That was a fun HALF inning.
this game is no longer awesome.
he did...it was awesome.
I'm pretty sure that Len called Bryant's home run a Brexit.
everyone but heyward with a hit and a 3 run lead with coghlan on 3rd through 5 batters. hell yeah.
okay, this is just silly. 19 pitches in, 1 out, 4 runs in, men on 1st and 2nd...hendricks up to bunt.
...and almora contributes the final out. that was a fun inning.
this game is awesome already.
also, there's a lot of cubs fans in the park tonight.
Clearly, Joe Maddon is a Lineup Wizzard.
"Cubs manager Joe Maddon said Friday that Anthony Rizzo (back) is feeling better and it's "possible" the first baseman could return to the lineup Saturday."
Maddon shore isn't afraid to bat a rookie 4th in the order.
how many pairs of dice did dusty leave hidden around the park when he left the cubs?
Line-up shakeup, going all-2015 with pitcher batting 8th, Bryant 2nd
J-Hey, Bryant 1B, Zobrist, Willson, Coghlan, Baez 3B, Russell, Hendricks, Almora
The Cubs are currently down Schwarber, Fowler, Soler, and Rizzo and Montero appear to be day-to-day. Maybe not surprising that they are struggling a bit as they rely more than expected on Baez, Russell, Almora, Contreras, and Szczur to provide offensive value.
Joe: "I loved the way we brought it today, man. We'll take this every night and win a lot of ballgames like that. Losing 4 in a row...that's nothin'."