Game 126 Thread / Reds @ Cubs (2 of 3)

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SP Bronson Arroyo SP *Ted Lilly
10-10, 5.51, 125 K, 50 BB, 143.2 IP
12-6, 4.32, 141 K, 54 BB, 154 IP
CF *Chris Dickerson LF Alfonso Soriano
SS Jeff Keppinger SS Ryan Theriot
RF *Jay Bruce 1B Derrek Lee
2B Brandon Phillips 3B Aramis Ramirez
3B Edwin Encarnacion CF *Jim Edmonds
1B *Joey Votto 2B Mark DeRosa
LF Jolbert Cabrera RF *Kosuke Fukudome
C Ryan Hanigan C Geovany Soto
P Bonson Arroyo P *Ted Lilly

The Astros did us no favors this afternoon losing to the Brewers so it'll be up to Ted Lilly and the Cubs to bring themselves closer to a division and playoff spot. The Cubs current six game lead in the division is its largest division lead since June 22nd, 2001, when they led the Cardinals by that much. Things should hopefully go a little smoother the rest of this season. 


While I remember the Cubs being competitive until very late in 2001, I have no memory of them having that large of a lead? They were that far ahead of both the Cards and Astros?

I'm certainly not counting my chickens regarding the division, particularly with our horrid September schedule. But with an 8.5 game lead on the wildcard....I don't have a problem talking about the Cubs making the playoffs now. I can't fathom 2 teams jumping the Cubs in the NL (3 if outside our division).

by July 22nd it was down to 2 games over Houston, by August 22nd they were down 2 games to Houston, by Sept 22nd they were down 7 to the Astros. Cards made a big push after July 22nd as well to tie the Astros.

I'm certainly not counting my chickens

All I have to do to keep my excitement down is think: NYM 07. Keeps it series by series, week by week for me.

Up 9 in the loss column (was 10 yesterday) for a playoff spot with 36 to play. Heck, the Cubs should even be able to hold on to that lead. I think it is safe to start talking PLAYOFFS?!?!?

yeah, just looked it up on ESPN...forgot how far ahead we were then. I don't remember feeling totally crushed that season, I can only guess it was because of 9/11.

Crazy how good the Cardinals were the last 2 months of the season.

I was at the game when I knew the season was over:

That is when I knew we didn't have the bullpen to keep ahold of the division.

when David Weathers gave up an inherited unearned run, you knew?

Nah, when felix heredia was brought in and Tony Gwynn doubled, i kinda knew then.

I was at this lovely 14 inning night game that year. Had about 80 chances to score in extras before they lost.

How come most of my bad memories of the decade about the Cubs involve the Marlins in one form or another.

I'm telling you my ultimate nightmare is we get into the first round of the playoffs and hit into double play after double play just like last year. We are an extremely double play prone team.

6th in the NL entering today...the more runners on base, the more double plays you'll see.

I know the numbers are a little bit lower than you would think but Lee, Ramirez, Edmonds, Fukudome, Derosa and Soto are all big time double play targets. Even Theriot who has speed has hit into his fair share this year.

Actually... Theriot has the highest double play rate on the team.

Ugh....let us never speak of this game again.

What a miserable game. We are wasting TONS of scoring chances early lately.
Bad defense, inopportune wild pitch, and no base runners in the game after 1st and 3rd no out in the 4th.

We are going to lose our share of games...but that was just a wasted opportunity and waste of a gem by Lilly.

I have this idea that Arroyo becomes Bob Gibson when he plays us...then I looked up his career stats against us on bb-ref, and they're not spectacular. Somebody shoulda let the Cubs' lineup know that before the game tonight.

I hate games like this against a crap team wallowing in last place. A waste of great pitching. Walked out after six. Played nine holes of golf. disgusted. blah!

Shit happens. Get 'em tomorrow and win another series.


The one thing I do know is that Dunn will NOT hit one off the houses across Sheffield against Z this afternoon.

At least Arroyo wasn't hitting homers left and right. Wasn't there a game a couple of years ago where he hit two homers, and drove in like 6 runs? I seem to remember that. It's not like he is a good-hitting pitcher, but I am always a little afraid of him after that...
I am also pretty disturbed any time the Cubs starting pitcher practically gift-wraps a game for the team, and they can't take it. I hope they can start to capitalize more consistently on those games before the end of the season...

Yea... but Glendon Rusch was pitching. :)

I think it's still the best offense in the NL. Sometimes they have bad nights. So did the 27 Yankees.

Yeah, neal. I know that everyone occasionally has bad nights. I just wish that the bad nights didn't match up with great pitching nights...

It's much more fun to lose 15-0 instead of 2-1.

Lilly has been solid since the break (or so).

He's arguably the most consistent Cubs starter this year. The last time he gave up as many as 5 runs in a game was April 17. None of the other Cubs starters can say that.

Unfortunately, he gives up 4 runs too often. If he could just limit the number of home runs he serves up, he'd be outstanding.

FWIW, I give Demp a mulligan on that one game against the Pale Hose, which makes him the most reliably consistent Cubs starter IMO. :-)

In the second half we STINK in Close Well-Pitched Low Scoring Games. And that bodes ill for the playoffs.

2nd Half Games where winner scores 4 runs or less.


Fri, Jul 18 @ Houston L 2-1 Howry (3-3)
Sat, Jul 19 @ Houston L 4-1 Zambrano (10-4)
Mon, Jul 21 @ Arizona L 2-0 Harden (0-1)
Fri, Jul 25 Florida L 3-2 Howry (3-4)
Sat, Jul 26 Florida L 3-2 12th Gaudin (0-1)
Fri, Aug 1 Pittsburgh L 3-0 Marquis (6-7)
Mon, Aug 4 Houston L 2-0 Dempster (12-5)
Sat, Aug 16 @ Florida L 2-1 Marshall (2-3)
Wed, Aug 20 Cincinati L 2-1 Lilly (12-7)


Fri, Aug 8 St. Louis W 3-2 11th Howry (5-4)



Average 7.95 Runs per win

Looks like: Our great starting pitching has been rendered irrelevant by the idiosyncracies of our
on-off offense.

In the second half we STINK in Close Well-Pitched Low Scoring Games. And that bodes ill for the playoffs.

Except winning close ball games is mostly a matter of luck.

The Reds are something like 8 or 9 games over .500 in one-run games.

yup, irrelevant...

Cubs offense needs to keep these games close or we have no shot in the playoffs.


I've been looking at these numbers really closely and I think I've spotted a trend.

When we score more runs than the other team, we almost always win.

i double checked that one and when the Cubs score more runs than the other team they have, in fact, won every game.

Unfortunately, when they have scored less runs in a game, they still haven't managed to win one yet.

If that's not 'bad luck', I don't know what is. Hopefully we can get that turned around in time for the playoffs. You would think we would have won at least ONE of those games!

probably one of those sample size things you guys are always talking about.

Also says Cubs will only call up 6 players in September. Speculates they will be Wuertz, Guzman (96mph FB), Hart, Pie, Hoffpauir, K.Hill to the 40Man as well.

Recent comments

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  • Well said. On one hand, I thought the HBP was a bad baseball play -- down 4 runs, put a runner on for a red-hot Fowler. On the other hand, they needed to do something -- I hadn't thought about the warning/pitching inside point. Is Hurdle that smart? He does not strike me that way. By the way -- not clear which fan base you are referring to in your "first" 3rd point.

  • My unsolicited opinions on topics covered in this thread:
    1. I hate the fact that after 162 games, a team could be out after 1 game. However, I think the system is pretty close to perfect right now. 2 of 3 isn't feasible unless they shorten the regular season, and it ices the division winners for way too long. This creates excitement, and rewards the division winners.

  • Personally, I think the game could have had a very different look had the Pirates held onto the ball and tagged Fowler out on the steal in the first. Cole was clearly frazzled, but if they took that runner off the base, it could have relaxed him a lot.

  • Football games are played once a week. There are 16 games a year. I'm not even remotely following at all how you can compare the two leagues and playoff systems. It is physically impossible to play a home and away series. The idea of not having any road games in baseball playoffs is certainly a head scratcher.

    How is not having the first and last game at home a benefit for the division winners and team with the best record? How is it not an incentive to win the division when a WC team has to blow their top pitcher?

    Call me lost.

  • Two 97+ win teams in a do-or-die, great bullpens, overpowering starters, plenty of pop--hard to believe that game wouldn't be tense. A 4-0 lead is not a blowout, especially in that situation and with the Cubs' young bullpen. Not only would a defensive play here or there make a difference, but you get the win there also on the home plate umps strike zone (generous strike calls for Arrieta, including a couple Ks), and on Schwarber sitting on the right pitch at the right time.

  • Unbeleivable Dodgers:
    I just noticed the Dodger's payroll today. It is just absurd. $300,000,000+!!
    Here is where just some of their money is for 2015:

    Some "Highlights"
    Carl Crawford $20MM
    Brandon McCarthy $17MM
    Bronson Arroyo $3.5MM
    Darwin B $2.2MM
    Dan Haren $10MM
    Matt Kemp $18MM
    Brian Wilson $10MM
    Ryan Webb $2.2MM
    Dee Gordon $2.5MM

  • So I think tomorrow will be the most important test of how far we can go. We can win it all with two pitchers since Arietta has shown he can carry over his success to the post season. If Lester can be dominant also then I think we can go far no matter how Hendricks or Hammel do.


    And in terms of pitching just went through to see how we could maximize Lester and Arietta and came up with this (Lester would be going on 4 days rest three times and Arietta twice):

  • i still can't believe that crawford contract (7/142). all that loot and years for a LF'r who's entire hitting game revolves around his legs and line-drive power. those triples that raised his value are deceptive as hell to his true power, but it helped him get paid.

    there's also pause about a guy who's ob% is almost totally driven by hits rather than walks. BOS got lucky unloading that crap deal.

  • I think the Cubs take Berry and Soler off playoff roster and add Hammel & Ramirez. Believe Maddon will find Denorfia & Jackson defense too hard to lose.

  • O & B: I like the one-game Wild Card heart attack game, but I'd actually like to see a best two-out-of-three LDS played in the home parks of the two division winners with the best records, and then the LCS as a best two-out-of-three in the home park of the division winner left standing with the best record, and then let's get to the World Series already. 

  • I...don't know. If chanting would help the Cubs beat the Cardinals in the next series or ultimately the World Series I think I'd be ok with it lol. I'm not supportive of saying insulting things to opposing fans or throwing things but loud noise and chanting seems appropriate to me.

    I also grew up in France though and that kind of thing is par for the course at soccer and rugby matches and I love it. I find crowds too passive here.

  • Er, they won the first one. My bad. Carry on.

  • With last night's win in Pittsburgh, the Cubs have tied the Pirates with 98 wins, and are only 2-1/2 games behind the Cardinals. No reason why the Cubs can't finish the post-season with the best winning percentage in baseball (regular season & post-season combined). 

  • BOB: I doubt very much that Matt Szczur will be on the Cubs LDS roster.

    If he wasn't on the Wild Card roster (when the Cubs went with 15 position players), he won't be on the LDS roster (when the Cubs will go with 13 or 14 position players).

    As it is, at least one of the three RH hitting outfielders who were on the Cubs WC roster (Denorfia, Jackson, and Soler) could get bumped off the LDS roster (probably Soler).