Hey, Randy Wells, Aren't You Dan Haren?

Arizona's Dan Haren was lifted from Sunday's start at San Diego after the seventh. He held the Padres scoreless for 6 2/3 innings before allowing a solo blast to Kevin Kouzmanoff. In all, Haren was charged with 1 run on 4 hits. He fanned 5, walked 1, and at one point, retired 13 Padre hitters consecutively.

He was deprived of his fifth win of the season, however, when the Arizona bullpen failed to protect a 6-1 lead going into the bottom of the ninth. (The Diamondbacks eventually won, 9-6, in 18 innings.)

In Haren's last start, at Los Angeles, he held the division-leading Dodgers to 1 run on 2 hits over 7 IP, but emerged with a no-decision in a game his team ultimately lost, 6-5.

Haren began the season by losing 3-0, 3-1, and 2-0 games to the Rockies, Dodgers, and Giants, respectively. After those three starts, he had an ERA of 1.89 and a record of 0-3.

After 11 starts, Haren now has a 2.42 ERA. In 78 IP, he has yielded just 57 hits and amassed 78 strikeouts while walking just 10. He is also a .500 pitcher (4-4).

Six games into his career as a Chicago Cub, Randy Wells is now 0-2, 1.86, with his only "non-quality" start coming in his National League debut...when he held the Brewers scoreless, but only for five innings.

Wells' performance Sunday in the 6-3, 14-inning win at Cincinnati was typical of what he has delivered since being summoned from Iowa: 6 2/3 IP, 7 H, 1 BB, 4 K, and just 2 ER. The non-support he received from the Cub offense and the inability of the Cubs bullpen (specifically Carlos Marmol today) to protect a lead on Wells' s behalf were also, unfortunately, typical.

The good news is that Aaron Heilman, Kevin Gregg, Jose Ascanio, David Patton, and Angel Guzman were able to keep the Reds off the scoreboard, while the Cub batsmen were finally able to recapture the lead in the 14th inning, a mere 11 innings after they had last tallied.

I'm sure it wouldn't make Randy Wells feel any better to know that he has company the likes of Dan Haren or that he is becoming a poster boy for the injustice of evaluating starting pitchers by their win-loss totals. But at least he can know that he has done a bang-up job for the Cubs and that if he continues to pitch so effectively, the wins will eventually begin to follow.

Won't they?

 

Comments

The folks here, and Lou, are all smart enough to know that W-L doesn't mean much for pitchers. I think Wells has pitched his way into the rotation for the rest of the year. I like Marshall, but I think I would rather keep him in the 'pen, and keep Wells in there.

Speaking of former catchers now pitchers, anyone notice that Blake Parker is 6 for 6 in save situations at Iowa, and 0.82 ERA with over a K per inning? And this in only his 3rd year of pitching.

I agree, and I wasn't suggesting that his spot could be in jeopardy because of his W-L record. I was just pointing to the fact that we currently have on the Cubs a living, breathing example of the shortcomings of the W-L yardstick in this guy who has pitched well enough to already have four or five wins under his belt.

You can read through the TCR archives, but there's more to winning percentage than run support and ERA. Alternatively, you can just look at who leads the majors in wins in 2009.

I should have said "...the injustice of evaluating starting pitchers solely by their win-loss totals..."

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/chi-mon-tri...

something about zell giving up control to the lenders, although it would be his call

Rob,

Article does say, "But Zell's team has indicated that it wants to work toward a consensual plan with the company's creditors," so they (the creditors) will most likely have a voice in determining Zell's role.

What a mess.

I'll say one thing about Zell, for all the hype about how smart of a businessman he is, he wasn't too smart buying a group of newspapers just as they are all going down the toilet.

I mentioned this during Sunday's Parachat that Randy Wells' tough luck reminded me of Juan Cruz' troubles as a Cub. In 2002 Cruz had a tough start to the season despite pitching very well. He went 0-7 in his first 8 starts, although his ERA was 2.81 after 6 starts. Even after getting roughed up his two next starts, falling to 0-7, his era was 3.86. That's when Don Baylor started mentioning he might need to move Cruz to the bullpen, and did so after his next start despite Cruz getting the win and going to 1-7. Cruz was moved out of the rotation to make way for Mark Prior's debut. A few weeks later Cruz was being considered to move back into the rotation to replace a struggling and injured Jason Bere.

Cruz' 2002 game log at Baseball Reference:

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/gl.cgi?n...

I found this tidbit from a 2002 CBS Sports fantasy blurb:

"Cruz gave up four runs and eight hits in 3 2/3 innings Tuesday as his record dropped to 0-7. He is winless in 10 starts since beating Pittsburgh last Sept. 26. However, his record is deceptive. His 3.86 ERA is hardly a cause for alarm. Cruz's problems can also be attributed to poor run support. The Cubs are only averaging two runs in his eight starts."

http://fantasynews.cbssports.com/fantasybaseball/p...

Replace Cruz with Wells in that story and nobody would know the difference, but Wells has been even more impressive. It's a hard knock life. I always liked Cruz, but he has always had the same control issues that plague Marmol so often. When either guy is on they are almost hittable.

"I'll say one thing about Zell, for all the hype about how smart of a businessman he is, he wasn't too smart buying a group of newspapers just as they are all going down the toilet."

Zell didn't buy Tribco for their papers - he bought them primarily for their real estate assets, as well as the TV/Radio stations. He never gave a crap about the papers, but was gambling on buying severely depreciated commercial real estate assets in prime locations on the cheap, in hopes of an eventual rebound. It's how he made his bones in the first place, his MO was coined as a "vulture investor."

Our intrepid manager just pitched Guzman and Marmol every game for a week straight, didn't he?

Wow - the Cubs Bullpen Usage Chart for Sunday certainly is packed with "X's"!

IS it the first time in the year all boxes have been checked for one day?

What a pathetic offense.

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  • video of Maddon.

    http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561343809737202839-4

    always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.

    Rob G. 4 hours 52 min ago view
  • from Muskat:

    #Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs

    Rob G. 4 hours 57 min ago view
  • http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561339391889382475-4

    Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.

    Rob G. 5 hours 2 min ago view
  • great defense

    Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.

    Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.

    I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.

    Rob G. 5 hours 14 min ago view
  • If all the starters have FIP > ERA, is that luck or good defense?

    Craig A. 5 hours 25 min ago view
  • #Cubs plummet to 19-5 in August.

    Fun with FIP

    • J. Hammel   3.07 ERA/4.27 FIP (3.68 FIP last year)
    • J. Arrieta     2.62 ERA/3.05 FIP (2.35 FIP last year)
    • J. Lester     2.81 ERA/3.67 FIP (2.92 FIP last year)
    • K. Hendricks  2.19 ERA/3.37 FIP (3.36 FIP last year)
    • J. Lackey     3.41 ERA/3.72 FIP (3.57 FIP last year with Cards)
    Rob G. 5 hours 51 min ago view
  • zastyryzryzryzny put in 3.2ip 1h 0bb 3k

    he's great when his control is "on"...problem is it's rarely "on" consistently. he could vault up the cubs prospect list if he ever gets better with that aspect of his game.

    crunch 6 hours 31 min ago view
  • JD's take was just trying to get in a lefty to better deal with mostly lefty Dodgers lineup.

    My second thought was what you came up with. My first thought was he was trying to light a fire under Hammel.

    Jackstraw 7 hours 43 min ago view
  • Maybe he was trying to spare him another brutal road start? NY, Colorado...

    billybucks 8 hours 28 sec ago view
  • joe got a pitcher up for hammel at nearly the 1st sign of trouble in the 3rd...pulled after 2.1

    not injured and though it wasn't his day so far he wasn't looking like a pure disaster.

    really short leash on him. zastryznzryzryny in.

    crunch 8 hours 4 min ago view
  • Russell and Soler can attest that Urias has a pretty good curve/slider - two big strikeouts looking to get out of that jam in the first.

    Eric S 8 hours 49 min ago view
  • Classic Scully - great stuff.

    Thank God we'll still have Hawk next season. (cricket cricket cricket)

    Eric S 13 hours 40 min ago view
  • Here's Scully's call on Bryant's 10th-inning homer:

    "And it's a long fly ball, a mean fly ball, and a gone fly ball."

    VirginiaPhil 14 hours 53 min ago view
  • When the Cubs were the old, hundred-year Cubs, one bad hop did not undo their opponents.

    VirginiaPhil 14 hours 57 min ago view
  • If only he was clutcher. More clutcher.

    Jackstraw 16 hours 15 min ago view
  • cubs win...bryant with 7HR in his last 8 games.

    crunch 23 hours 28 min ago view