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what a horrible lineup. Jones has a bad groin and Dusty says Walker needs a day off. Guzman's already hit a guy and walked Giles. Good start. Well I'm swamped at work. This will have to do. Cubs Lineup: *Juan Pierre, CF #Neifi Perez, SS Ronny Cedeno, SS Aramis Ramirez, 3B Michael Barret, C *John Mabry, 1B Matt Murton, LF Jerry Hairston Jr., RF Angel Guzman, P Padres *Dave Roberts, LF Mike Cameron, CF *Brian Giles, RF Mike Piazza, C Khalil Greene, SS Vinny Castilla, 3B *Adrian Gonzalez, 1B Josh Barfield, 2B Woody Williams, P
GAME THIRTY-FOUR IN-GAME DISCUSSION THREAD [PARACHAT] CHICAGO CUBS (15-18, 5th, 6.5 GB) AT SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS (16-18, 5th, 3.5 GB) Telephone Company Park, 2:30 PM CDT Weather: 68 degrees, Sunny, Wind Out to RF @ 13mph TV: WGN, DirecTV 735 Radio: WGN, XM 189
Jamey Wright, RHP 2-3, 4.61 ERA, 33 IP 19 K, 16 BB, 5 HRSean Marhsall, LHP 2-0, 3.12 ERA, 34.2 IP 26K, 11 BB, 3 HR
Ronny Woo-Woo, SS *Shrunken Head, CF *Having A Horrible May, 2B Please Start Hitting, 3B *Isn't This Why We Got Him?, 1B 1 RBI in 3 Weeks???, C *See I'm Not That Bad, RF One Step Closer to Getting Benched, LF *Still A Rookie, P, P*Randy Winn, RF #Omar Vizquel, SS Lance Niekro, 1B *Asterisk, LF Pedro Feliz, 3B *Steve Finley, CF Mike Matheny, C Kevin Frandsen, 2B Jamey Wright, P

Cubs vs. Wright: Aramis Ramirez: 6-29 207/273/241 1 XBH, 2 BB, 6 K John Mabry: 8-25 320/346/360 1 XBH, 1 BB, 2 K Juan Pierre: 7-14 500/500/786 1 HR, 3 2B, 0 BB, 1 KGiants vs. Marshall:

Sean Marshall has a 0.89 WHIP this year, holy freaking efficiency. It's been more than a pleasant surprise that he's been able to be so effective, so quickly in the majors. Let's hope he keeps it up today and we'll see if he has the guts to go after Bonds. After one comes two, let the streak begin!!!
OK! I finally figured out how to get my Big Board and organizational update file uploaded to the server. It's available here: Big Board and Organizational Update There are multiple tabs -- the first tab is the big board, showing the current rosters of every team in the system. Each team has its own tab as well, showing starts by position for each team. In addition, the players' names are linked to up-to-date splits for just about every player in the system, thanks to the tremendous work done over at Brew Crew Ball. I'll update this as often as I can, and as always I welcome suggestions and corrections. I've added a link to the right-hand column ("The Big Board") and I'll post notices here when I've updated the page.
GAME 34 REVIEW
CUBS 8, GIANTS 1 Recap | Box Score | Play-by-play | Game Chart | Photos
W: Carloz Zambrano (1-2) L: Matt Cain (1-5)
I didn't really catch much of the game, only the first few innings on XM radio. Jon Miller made it sound like the Cubs defense was a bit shaky(Jones error, Z didn't cover first base on a potential DP, Pierre let one over his head) but for once the bats were there to overcome. By all accounts Z looked good and we find out that when you go after Bonds, it is possible to get him out every so often. I thought Bonds was going to take his normal day off tomorrow as it's a day game following a night game but Alou said he'll play. It'll be up to Sean Marshall to try and win the series and keep Bonds from climbing a rung on the all-time home run ladder. Glad the losing streak is over, the dogs, AngelFan wife and kids are safe once again. Looking forward to starting a winning streak.
GAME THIRTY-THREE IN-GAME DISCUSSION THREAD [PARACHAT] CHICAGO CUBS (14-18, 5th, 6.5 GB) AT SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS (16-17, 4th, 3.0 GB) Telephone Company Park, 9:15 PM CDT Weather: 63 degrees, clear, Wind Out to CF @ 17mph TV: CSN Radio: WGN, XM 189
Matt Cain, RHP 1-4, 6.27 ERA, 33 IP 26 K, 13 BB, 8 HRCarlos Zambrano, RHP 0-2, 4.43 ERA, 40.2 IP 48 K, 28 BB, 6 HR
Take A Freaking Pitch, SS *Out Machine, CF *Wishing He Got Traded, 2B Stop Gawking, Start Hitting, 3B *Desperate Times, Desperate Measures, 1B Pull A Pitch, LF *Fragile Ego, RF Hank To The Rescue, C #Drill Bonds for Me, P*Randy Winn, RF #Omar Vizquel, SS *Mark Sweeney, 1B *The Devil Incarnate, LF *Steve Finley, CF Pedro Feliz, 3B Kevin Frandsen, 2B Mike Matheny, C Matt Cain, P

Matt Cain's a pretty high-end prospect who's struggled out of the gate in 2006. I'm sure tonight will be a huge confidence booster for the kid. At least with Z on the mound, the chances of Bonds getting drilled skyrocket. Do something!
GAME 32 RANT
GIANTS 6 CUBS 1
Recap | Box Score | Play-by-play | Game Chart | Photos
W: Jason Schmidt (3-2) L: Rich Hill (0-2)
Eighth verse, same as the first. You know, I've been calling for Dusty Baker to be fired for so long now that I can't get particularly exercised about joining the growing chorus right now. It's like this $^#&@ piece of property I'm trying to sell in California -- we found a buyer last September, but have had to deal with the San Diego County bureaucracy and a ludicrously incompetent buyer's agent for so long that when (if?) we finally do close, I'm not going to feel any joy or happiness, or really even relief. All I'm going to feel is a sense that this Thing that has been hanging over me is gone, and there will be a void that will, eventually I'm sure, go away and we'll just start to get on with our lives without wondering every day if this is actually going to happen or if we're just going to keep slogging along, waist-deep in stress, for the rest of our lives. That's how it is with me and the Cubs at the moment. I'm not going to go back through the TCR archives and find all the times I and others wrote about getting rid of Dusty, but they are there. There are many reasons why I thought it was the right thing to do over the last few seasons, and all of those reasons still apply. In fact, they apply now more than ever.
GAME THIRTY-TWO IN-GAME DISCUSSION THREAD [PARACHAT] CHICAGO CUBS (14-17, 5th, 6.5 GB) AT SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS (15-17, 4th, 4.5 GB) Telephone Company Park, 7:15 PM CDT Weather: 56 degrees, clear, Wind Out to RF @ 20 mph TV: WGN, DirecTV 745 Radio: WGN, XM 189
Jason Schmidt, RHP 2-2, 3.77 ERA, 43 IP 33 K, 18 BB, 4 HRRich Hill, LHP 0-1, 11.25 ERA, 4 IP 1 K, 2 BB, 2 HR
*Juan Pierre, CF Ronny Cedeno, SS *Todd Walker, 1B Aramis Ramirez, 3B Michael Barrett, C *Jacque Jones, RF Matt Murton, LF #Neifi Perez, 2B *Rich Hill, P*Randy Winn, RF #Omar Vizquel, SS *Lance Niekro, 1B *Satan, LF Pedro Feliz, 3B *Steve Finley, CF Mike Matheny, C #Jose Vizcaino, 2B Jason Schmidt, P

Cubs vs. Schmidt: Neifi Perez: 6-20 300/391/450 1 HR, 3 BB, 2 K Michael Barrett: 4-20 200/200/350 1 HR, 0 BB, 2 K Aramis Ramirez: 5-18 278/350/611 1 HR, 3 2B, 1 BB, 1 K Juan Pierre: 5-17 294/333/412 1BB, 3 K John Mabry: 1-16 063/063/063 0 BB, 8 K Todd Walker: 4-14 286/412/286 3 BB, 1 K &nbsp&nbsp&nbspGiants vs. Hill:

The rematch we've all been waiting for, who could forget the epic duel between Hill and Schmidt last year on July 25th. In his first major league start, Hill labored through 5 innings, but held the Giants to merely two runs while striking out five. The veteran Schmidt though was up to the task, hurling seven strong innings, his only blemish - a Michael Barrett dinger. The Cubs offense persisted though, scratching a run off of Boo-Bird Hawkins in the eight, and then finally pushing through in the ninth off Tyler Walker. Cedeno leads off with a single, was moved over on a sacrifice bunt by Hairston, a sharp single to right by Todd Walker advanced Cedeno to third and that was followed up by the easiest decision ever made in baseball, an intentional walk to Derrek Lee. That set the stage for the one and only Jeromy Burnitz, who promptly flied out to centerfield, deep enough for the young Cedeno to scamper home with the winning run. 3-2, Cubs Win, Cubs Win!!!! Why did I write just write in such great detail about a meaningless game last July? Because it's a lot more exciting than the drivel the Cubs have produced over the last week or so. One other quick note from the game last year, Omar Vizquel stole 3 bases in the game, 2 off the Hill/Barrett combo that we'll see tonight. With Randy Winn now on the team, Hill's inability to hold runners and Barrett's well-known throwing deficiencies, I expect a track meet out there. Of course we stole five bases off Piazza over the weekend and scored one run off a Ramirez home run, so it probably won't matter much. The Cubs seven game losing streak though will take a backseat (at least on a national level) to the Barry Bonds pursuit of Babe's home run total. A mere two home runs from becoming the second greatest home run hitter of all-time, it will be up to the Cubs pitching staff to try and stave off the celebration until a later date. With Alou out at least 2 weeks (and likely more), I don't see any good reason to pitch to Mr. Bonds with anybody on base. Normally I abhor the "Walk Bonds" approach, because telling your pitchers that you don't think they're good enough to get Bonds out isn't the way to inspire future confidence when they do need to get a good hitter out. But in this case, I'd rather not watch that buffoon celebrate while I'm trying to watch the game. He may possibly be the greatest baseball player ever and I could care less, chemically enhanced or not, he's a jerk, a creep, and I hope he never even sniffs Aaron's record. If I was a major league pitcher, if I ever reached a three ball count on him, I'd just throw at his armguard every single time. Heck with George Mitchell's steroid witchhunt, go find out how much his home run rate went up once he started setting up half an inch off the plate with 2 feet of body armor covering his "tender" elbow. (On a sidenote, he is a free agent next year, man we could use a bat like that, Any takers? Anyone?........kidding) The Cubs are in desperate need of some offense, some defense, some kind of spark, a bench-clearing brawl, who knows. I suggest drilling Bonds each time, see what happens. Win a freakin' game!!!
In last week's Week Ahead, I said:
Hi Carlos! How are you? Have you remembered that you are very good yet?
And:
As of today the Cubs' next three opponents are a combined 28-47 (.373). With or without Wood, Prior, and Lee, these are games the Cubs need to win.
If you're scoring at home (or even if you're alone), that would be one yes and one no, which is a .500 percentage, which is something the Cubs are now three games away from. Bleah. San Francisco Giants Know Your Enemy: McCovey Chronicles, El Lefty Malo, Only Baseball Matters Tuesday, 9:15: Rich Hill vs. Jason Schmidt Wednesday, 9:15: Carlos Zambrano vs. Matt Cain Thursday, 2:35: Sean Marshall vs. Jamey Wright It looks like the Cubs will get a second chance to be party to a slugger passing Babe Ruth, as Barry Bonds sits on 713 home runs with the Cubs on their way to the Phone Booth in The City by the Bay. Did you know that legendary San Francisco newspaper columnist Herb Caen used to refer to San Francisco as "Baghdad by the Bay"? I'm sure it was a compliment when he said it, but I doubt any city wants to be compared to Baghdad right now. This oughtta be a barn-burner of a series. Rank in the NL in key offensive categories: Runs: Giants 11th, Cubs 16th Home Runs: Giants 11th, Cubs 15th Average: Giants 9th, Cubs 14th OBP: Giants 11th, Cubs 15th Slugging: Giants 13th, Cubs 15th Of course, the Padres rank below the Giants in all those categories and they just waxed the Cubs for four straight. On the bright side, the Cubs scored 6 runs over the last two games, as many as they had scored in the previous eight. Bleah. San Diego Padres Know Your Enemy: Ducksnorts, Gaslamp Ball Friday, 1:20: Woody Williams vs. Angel Guzman Saturday, 1:20: Greg Maddux vs. Chris Young Sunday, 1:20: Rich Hill vs. Clay Hensley Padres.com has a TBA scheduled for Friday, with Williams pushed back to Saturday -- not sure why. Also, Dusty has not officially named Angel Guzman as the starter for that game. It doesn't seem like there's any chance that the Cubs will activate Kerry Wood, though, so the only other option seems to be bringing Glendon Rusch back to the rotation. Of course, Dusty says that will "probably not" happen, but what are the other alternatives? Bringing back Jerome Williams? Bleah. If the Cubs really don't want Guzman in the rotation for another start, how about calling up Les Walrond for one start? He's a minor-league journeyman (29 years old, 8 major league innings) who is off to a 4-1, 2.12 start at Iowa. He's not a long-term solution, but it might be nice to reward him for what he's done over the ifrst month. He's not on the 40-man, so they would need to make room for him, but do they really need to keep Mike Restovich on the 40-man roster? Bleah. [UPDATE:] As mentioned in the comments, Restovich was outrighted to Iowa because he is out of options. So, he's off the 40-man and there is a spot open.
GAME THIRTY-ONE IN-GAME DISCUSSION THREAD [PARACHAT] CHICAGO CUBS (14-16, 5th, 6 GB) AT SAN DIEGO PADRES (16-15, 3rd, 2.5 GB) Puppy Park, 9:05 PM CDT Weather: Lovely TV: CSN, DirecTV 738 Radio: WGN, XM 188
Chris Young, RHP 2-2, 3.53 ERA, 35.2 IP 30 K, 14 BB, 6 HRGreg Maddux, RHP 5-1, 2.35 ERA, 38.1 IP 29 K, 6 BB, 2 HR
*Juan Pierre, CF Ronnie Cedeno, SS *Todd Walker, 1B Michael Barrett, C Aramis Ramirez, 3B Matt Murton, LF *Jacque Jones, RF Jerry Hairston Jr., 2B Greg Maddux, P*Dave Roberts, LF Mike Cameron, CF *Brian Giles, RF Mike Piazza, C Josh Barfield, 2B Vinny Castilla, 3B Khalil Greene, SS *Adrian Gonzalez, 1B Chris Young, P

Cubs vs. Young: Jacque Jones: 0-8 2 K &nbsp&nbsp&nbspPadres vs. Maddux: Mike Piazza: 16-63 254/266/460 4 HR, 1 BB, 9 K Vinny Castilla: 13-43 302/333/581 3 HR, 1 BB, 8 K Brian Giles: 9-25 360/448/600 1 HR, 4 BB, 5 K

Maddux back to the mound and hopefully he'll fare better than his last outing as he got a bit torched by the D'Backs. The Cubs are in desperate need of something exceptional, either an other-wordly pitching performance, some crazy 4 for 4 day by an unlikely hero, or Dusty getting himself thrown out, something to spark this lifeless team. Get a win Cubbies!!! UPDATE: Mike Restovich is off the cubs.com 25-man roster and shows up on the Iowa Cubs roster, so I assume he's the unlucky soul. By my count, the Cubs have 6 players who can play second base, but only five who you could expect to hit a home run. I love this game!
The Cubs will add INF Ryan Theriot to the roster today. For the life of me, I can't find out who they're sending down although you'd assume it's between Mike Restovich or Freddie Bynum. Both would have to clear waivers, but somehow I doubt that would be a problem. If it is Bynum, you have to really question his acquisition. Hindsight being 20/20 and all and I could really care less about John Koronka, but why give up a pitcher with options left for a guy who doesn't seem to do anything better than a guy we already had. Theriot doesn't have Bynum's speed, but since scrapping switch-hitting, he's been hitting the ball much better and he's always been considered a superior defender. A matter of fact, in his draft class he was considered the second best defensive shortstop behind the A's Bobby Crosby. I don't think it would be impossible for a guy with superior defensive skills to be able to pick up the outfield spots if needed, which is about the only thing that Bynum seemed to have an edge on. Go figure. Some other quick notes: -For those displeased with Mr. Hendry, Jay Mariotti's got your back. - I have a heavy man-crush on Bruce Miles. Speak it, brother! He also came up with the nickname, "The Riot" for today's newest Cub Ryan Theriot, which just rules. - Under no circumstances whatsoever are hitters hitting in the low 200's allowed to watch their home runs. I'm looking at you Aramis. I'm amazed someone hasn't drilled him yet for gawking. In the grass is always greener compartment, if the Cubs pulled a miracle trade of getting Miguel Cabrera and dumping Aramis (in separate deals of course), I would not shed a single tear. - If you haven't read this already, former Cub 1st round pick Matt Clanton was released over the off-season and had some choice words to say about Jim Hendry and the organization. According to Clanton, Jim Hendry once said this to him:
ëThis [organization] is not a democracy. It is a dictatorship. You shut the f--k up.í
No truth to the rumor that Hendry then made him drop and give him 20 in the mud right afterwards.

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