Red Dawn

Baseball should be back tonight from its two-day unscheduled and scheduled hiatus, as the Cubs start a stretch of 20 straight. Rich Harden gets the nod and says it's the best he's felt in a long time. We'll see how good he's feeling after pitching in 30 degree temperatures and a light drizzle, although that's probably picnic weather in Victoria, B.C. It's also the first night game of the year for the Cubs, where they went 20-8 last season.

Milton Bradley will sit again, bad weather and a bad groin never being a good mixture. The lineup from Wittenmyer's twitter feed is Soriano, Fukudome, Lee, Hoffpauir, Ramirez, Fontenot, Soto, Theriot and Harden. They'll oppose Micah Owings and the 7-5 Reds (5-2 on the road) and of course, thy former Cubs manager - sir Dusty Baker.

To hold you over until game time, some fancy plate disclipline trend charts from Harry at Cubs F/x. I also wanted to mention the "Cubs' Bullpen Usage" table on the right sidebar below the first ad, a nifty little shorthand to see who might be available out of the pen each night and a countdown to Carlos Marmol's inevitable arm injury.


I don't see how they can play this game tonight...I was just outside in the Loop and it's raining (nearly sleeting).

got me...muskat said earlier they were going to try and get it in...

weather shows it not clearing up until about midnight...

muskat said earlier they were going to try and get it in...


If they play, I'd be alright with it if they sat Fonzy, Ramirez, and Bradley. Weather looks like crap.

Bruce says they plan to still play tonight...

As long as the new field drains as well as they say it does the game should go on. It's not raining hard at all (my windshield wipers were fine on the slowest possible setting).

Thanks for the updates on the game conditions.

I really like the usage chart. Is that an original TCR idea, or shamelessly lifted from some other blog?

I would have given credit to the blog if I lifted it....somewhat original idea except that John Hill use to do them in the game previews once upon a time.

although I'm sure some site somewhere is doing something similar...

All of 2008 they only canceled one game. The Astros that "gave us the Division."

They even played when lightning was striking nearby on another occasion until Berkman ran into the dugout.

Berkman realized he's ehhh... a big target?

I think he also screamed like a little girl.

CSN brilliantly comparing the popularity of the Chicago sports teams. I think it's just trendy to kick Cub's fans. Eff them.

Douchebag 1: "If I can't interview him after the game, he's not an athlete."

Douchebag 2: "You can't interview Fukudome."

"If I can't interview him after the game, he's not an athlete."

brilliant. god knows it's all about the writer/journalist, not the players.

...and give douchebag #2 a high-5 for the reply.

I'm barely paying attention, so I don't know the context, but something tells me I'm better off not knowing.

The fact is the Cubs are a national obsession and probably top 3 in terms of number of fans. A. people can watch them on WGN, and b. people like to root for the underdog. It also helps to have a history of likable players like Sandberg and Sammy. When the Cubs finally do go all the way, and after the initial buzz, you'll see a profound dropoff in interest among some of the more casual fans.

I hope you're right

"Could have first Micah v Micah matchup in baseball history tonight..."

Nope. Micah Bowie faced Micah Owings April 5, 2007, when
Arizona visited Washington Nats.

Mike MacDougal DFA'ed... someone will pick him up.

Michael McDonald has been DFA'ed...someone will pick him up. That's what a fool believes!

game time delayed by 10 minutes, 7:15 CST Start...

Man, Soriano is so fucking maddening often. Bases juiced and of course k's.

He's got a case of the Sosa with the bases loaded.

Soriano's numbers with the bases loaded over the past three seasons:

304/333/522 in 23 ABs with 3 walks and 5 strike outs.

Soriano's numbers in 2009 with the bases loaded.

000/200/200 2 K's and a walk in 5 PA's.

Runners in scoring position:

0/9 with 3 BB's

Sosa's career numbers with the bases loaded:

301/342/566 in 193 PA

His total career line was: 273/344/534

Who has the major league record for most bases loaded PA's to start their career without a grand slam?

Sosa. What's your point?

My point is that Sosa was overanxious and chased pitches outside of the strike zone whenever he came up with the bases loaded for the first 9 years (without looking it up) of his career. Soriano is doing the exact same thing.

It wasn't really that obtuse a point.

You act like those 9 at-bats with RISP, and the 5 at-bats with the bases loaded, are relevant and meaningful...

No, I act like when I watch him with the bases loaded he is over anxious and chasing pitches 18 inches outside of the strike zone.

Which, of course, has very little/nothing to do with your ridiculously small sample sized stats that you posted above as if they were relevant.

I is all the fault of the dickpole

Did I forget where the parachat link was?

Hoffpower just tags the fucking thing every time out

GOOD OMEN! Tan & white cat runs left field, and they dump it in the Bartman seats. Cubs take the lead and we need a hold.

This is my official announcement, even if they win it all, I'll still watch next year.

Ahhh...the Neal Cotts Experience!

Did that "feel" like Neil Cott's last chance to not walk a batter to anyone else besides me?

Nice to see Cubs olde prospect LOU MONTANEZ up with Orioles tonight extend his personal hitting streak to thirty games going back to last year with an RBI double against the WSox.

Meanwhile FELIX P, who bumped LM down to AAA, is zero for his last 19.

Everytime I see Baseball Tonight's segment on the nasty pitches of the night, I see Felix Pie. But it's not the pitches that are nasty.

mark grace @ARZ...calling the game from the pool tonight.

some between-inning promotion where some fan tries to catch 3 balls shagged into the OF...dude misses the first 2.

mark grace climbs down the OF wall and "ejects" the fan and catches the 3rd ball for him...wearing a hawaiian shirt and shorts...

i miss mark grace.

You know what I hate? I see @ARZ and I immediately think that's Mark Grace's twitter. I'm going to go kill myself now.

You know what? It's your own fault for knowing anything about Twitter. I had to use my own deductive reasoning skills to interpret what your comment meant. Ignorance is never a virtue, except in the case of Twitter.

@MisterWhipple: Wasn't that the night there was a funnel cloud spotted in Logan Square? That storm was craaazzzy.

I do believe that's correct. That was the weirdest weather I've seen in Chicago. Branches and even entire trees fell on cars all over the place.

Recent comments

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  • 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.

  • Hendricks: 15 up, 15 down.

  • he strongly separates his post-playing career from his playing career, though he loves to visit the barrier of player and fan. many ex-players don't put up this barrier.

    he's not interested in going back to the clubhouse or pretty much anything field/game related, but he'll grab a ticket and observe with the fans and visit ex players on "neutral" ground. he's written 3 pieces for the new yorker and other pieces elsewhere. i remember one photo/bio piece he did, but don't remember where i read it (years ago).

  • ?
    I find your comments rather obtuse. He recognized he didn't want to pursue baseball anymore and went back to school to learn how to become a better writer - opening up a new chapter in his life.

    I don't know where you find a "sad disconnection" because he is writing about his experiences? He pursued a ball career for a long time so no doubt there is some meloncholy in his tone, but I just don't know what the fuck you are talking about.

  • he has an almost sad disconnection from the game based on his writings. even though he's "been there" (no matter how much of a minor role) he doesn't seem to feel like he belongs or deserves to belong in the boy's club.

    he seems to go to great lengths to enjoy the game from an arm's length while occasionally getting close enough for a high-5 from those who affirm him that he belongs.

  • I read that guy's article about why he quit baseball and it was really well done too. In terms of Rizzo, I have seen multiple references to how this is Rizzo's team just as much as Madden's and it makes that pick up that much better that we have someone that is not only a great player but a leader and all around great guy (been reading about all the charity work he does too). There is really nothing not to like about Rizzo.

  • Nice article on Rizzo

    Written by ex teammate

  • JD concurred with Ariettas second at bat

  • Hey AZ, Chesny Young made raised some eyebrows with his minor league season. What do you think of him?

  • AZ Phil, why are Beeler and Parker in Mesa? Are they still recovering from injury?