Game 127 Thread / Reds @ Cubs (3 of 3)

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SP Josh Fogg SP Carlos Zambrano
  2-5, 7.71, 38 K, 24 BB, 65.1 IP
12-5, 3.38, 107 K, 53 BB, 157 IP
LF *Chris Dickerson LF Alfonso Soriano
SS Jeff Keppinger SS Ryan Theriot
RF *Jay Bruce 1B Derrek Lee
2B Brandon Phillips 3B Aramis Ramirez
1B *Joey Votto CF *Jim Edmonds
3B Edwin Encarnacion 2B Mark DeRosa
CF *Corey Patterson RF *Kosuke Fukudome
C *Paul Bako C Henry Blanco
P Josh Fogg P #Carlos Zambrano


The Cubs try to take two of three from a team so bad, they have given more than 250 at-bats to a player hitting less than .200, are granting a 12th start to a pitcher with a 7.71 ERA (ERA+ of 58), and sent an apology letter to their fans...with 35 games still left in the campaign.

Carlos Zambrano goes for his fifth consecutive win against the Reds, hoping to bounce back to #1 form after three unimpressive outings.


I think this game is one of the most important of the year. Not in terms of winning. Winning would be nice, but the Cubs earned themselves a margin of error. It's critical that Zambrano rights the ship, and does it now. With the bitch schedule in September and heading into the the playoffs, if he doesn't get his #1 stuff back, that significantly weakens our outlook to get deep in September. Cincy's awful offense can hopefully get him on track. If not, it doesn't get any easier in the remainder of his starts.

Not game-related but a fantastic read on Cubs 4th rounder Matthew Cerda and LLWS over-age phenom Danny Alomnte:

Yeah, it has been awhile since I have been that sucked in by a story. Raisin is right, guys. That is a GREAT article. You'd really be making a mistake not to read it.

It's more critical that our offense starts winning low scoring games.

dude, if it was up to our offense we would constantly be winning high scoring games, which is what we've been doing. wake up and smell the best run differential in the major leagues.

If Lou can get Lee and Fuku going, though, it'll be that much better. Our run differential's awesome obviously, but it's tough to lose close games like last night's especially when the pitching's been so stellar of late.

Z looks shaky and Double Play Lee does it again. Not a good start.

Is DLee ever going to hit another home run?

I think it's time to experiment with Soriano in the three spot, bat Theriot lead-off and move Lee down in the order where his ground balls to shortstop with men on base will come more often with two outs.

We need something else at #3 that's for sure. Derrek Lee ranks last among qualified NL #3 hitters. Hitting him in front of Aramis who ranks 1st in the NL at clean-up seems like a waste.



or today


Lee ranks last in what exactly? Numbers please.

OPS among #3 hitters in the NL that qualify...

Of course, #3 hitters that had AB's in other spots in the order don't show up on the list, even if hey have enough AB's to qualify for a BA title. For example, see Randy Winn that has 340 AB's in the #3 spot with a .735 OPS but has enough AB's otherwise to qualify.

How about Batting Average and OPS among qualified #3 hitters for starters?

Worse, Derrek Lee is even below average compared to the mean average NL #3 hitter.

Derrek Lee #3 .289 .357 .467 .824

NL average #3 .291 .364 .473 .837

I'd hate to see this board if we lose a game to the Brewers or Cardinals in September.

Losses to the Cardinals or Brewers are honorable.

Losses (and I think we already have 5) to crap outfits like the Reds are ridiculous. The Iowa Cubs could sweep the Reds.

You are right... we really should expect the Cubs to NEVER lose a game against any team not named the Cardinals or Brewers.

Yes, you're right. The Reds are a powerhouse. We should expect to lose to them.

That's not what he said.


Where did I say that?

The Cubs should win series against bad teams. It is unrealistic to expect any team to never lose to a team, regardless of how good or bad that team is. And you know it.

I see this is your new soap box.

But good thing that Marmol gave up that run - this way the Cubs were able to win a close and low-scoring game. Does 3-2 count as low scoring?

Where did I say that?

and where did I say "we really should expect the Cubs to NEVER lose a game against any team not named the Cardinals or Brewers" ??

"Losses (and I think we already have 5) to crap outfits like the Reds are ridiculous."

That cannot be emphasized enough!

The 2008 Cubs have no business losing to that bunch.

Next crap outfit up is Washington--worst team in major league baseball. 1-9 in their last ten games.

2-1 vs the Cubs.

Tampa Bay is 2-5 against Cleveland. Than Angels are 3-2 versus Kansas City. The Red Sox are 2-6 against Toronto. The White Sox are 3-2 versus Baltimore. The Twins are 1-2 versus Baltimore. The D Bags are 1-2 versus Cincy. The Dodgers 2-4 versus Atlanta. The Brewers are 3-4 versus Colorado. Tge Cardinals are 3-4 versus the Giants. The Mets are 2-5 against the Padres. The Phillies are 3-3 versus San Fran.

The Cubs have the best record in baseball, with the widest run differential. They're one of the top four teams, without a doubt, and have fewer flaws than the Angels, Red Sox and Rays.

I got some bad news for you friend,

if the Cubs play .667 baseball against the bad teams and .500 against the good ones, we clinch with 5 - 7 games left in the season.

2 out of 3 is perfectly acceptable. Not idea. But acceptable.

If you want perfection and blow outs watch the US Women's softball team.


Scratch that.

If the Cubs can beat teams they're supposed to beat, like Corey Patterson and the Reds, Washington, etc., losses to the Brewers or Cardinals in September won't matter so much.


(wilhelm scream)

Saw this Harden shirt outside the park last night:

The resemblance is uncanny.

Dear DLee,

Please stop hitting ground balls to the shortstop.

Thank you.

GameDay is malfunctioning. It says "Corey Patterson walks." Can anyone set me straight on what's happening?

it's alright, he did the honorable thing and got caught stealing, so as not to clog the bases.


I'll take this "shaky" Z the rest of the way, thanks.

Rejoice! We triumph.


Yeah! We Win a Close Low Scoring Game!

feels good

Shouldn't have been close. :P

Nice win, have to hope that this is just another annual August hiccup for Z. Gotta love that it never effects his batting, though. That tater was crushed.

That game didn't do much to pacify my worries about Z. He was behind everyone the first 4 innings. It was certainly and improvement o0ver the last 2 outings, but something is still clearly "off".

The difference between Z last night and Z the previous two starts was the competition, not the pitching.

78 wins is the most for ANY team in baseball. Woo.

The magic number should be posted should, tomorrow, the Cubs win, Brewers lose or (God willing) both.

Magic #'s are 30 and 27.

thanks smart ass. And I meant front page.

start a blog, douchebag.

eh...even at 29, you are still talking close to a month to clinch.
I remember in the 80's, the Trib used to start counting down from 20...that seems like a good point to really pay attention to Magic #s.

You know what would be a lot of fun. Clinching the Division against the Cardinals, on the final Wrigley weekend of the year (Or at least, officially knocking them out of the playoffs)

Why wait? We're not tempting fate.

so, with 4 more wins, Cubs will have a winning record for the 5th time in 8 years (2001,2003,2004,2007,2008)....versus only 5 winning seasons from the 29 years from 1972 - 2000

Fire Hendry! ?

Z cracked his mollar(tooth-sp?)during warm ups today.

He said he did it by chewing gum.


cracked a tooth by chewing gum?

i wonder if he's getting training supplements from neifi these days.

for a guy with dehydration issues he's been showing up on the mound so hyped this year...whether its coffee, redbull, pills, or whatever...he's putting too much of it in him it seems.

at least he's not overthrowing on the mound.


speaking of...from ye old world o' roto...

someone forgot to tell j.sosa that they drug test a bit more harsher and a lot more regularly in the minors...

"MLB suspended RHP Jorge Sosa 50 gamesfor testing positive for amphetamines.
Sosa, who opened this year in the majors with the Mets, had spent the last month with Seattle's Triple-A club. He'll miss most of April next year, so the interest in him on even a minor league deal figures to be pretty limited."

I'm sure TLR and the Cards will take a flyer on him.

Dusty - "We just came up a run short of winning the series"

The Cubs were a run short of sweeping your sorry-ass team, Dusty.

Oh, man, H Mike -

I was laughing at Dusty for saying that one run would have won the game (no, doofus, it would have only tied it)....but then you matched him. Yikes.

I noticed what he said ... I just thought I'd talk his language ... :)

he actually came up 2 runs short.

But he's still happy - little of that pesky base clogging to annoy him this series.

Sorry about being off topic. Could anyone tell me what I can expect to pay for decent seats at this saturdays game. Thanks all

Whats decent?
How many?

One... million dollars (Dr. Evil touches pinky to cheek)

2 tickets, not obstructed, maybe bleachers.

Bleachers will be pretty expensive.

And you have to buy them early which will be in scalper advantage.

Just walk around the park and talk to the guys with tix and try to wait right up to game time to get them desperate. You still our going to pay at least $ 50 a ticket.

But another disadvantage is there is only two more Saturday games left this year and one of them is the Cardinals.

Good luck and watch out for counterfeit tix.

I bought some Upper Deck Box seats a few Wednesdays ago from a scalper for $65/seat. At first I thought it was a littly pricey, until I realized fucking face value was $55. The price of seats these days is really getting out of whack.

But yeah, if you wait until right around game time, they'll unload for at least close to face. Unfortunately, tix are in such high demand this year I've been a few times where the only seats they have left are singles or those dugout box seats for $300 a pop. Better Craig's List than sorry on a Saturday, me thinks.

Look on Craigs List.

I bought 2 bleacher tickets for a Sunday game a couple of weeks ago at face value through Craigs List.

There you go.

A Sunday game might be easier. Saturday noon game, big drinking day.

the NL Cy Young and MVP's

Lincecum and Pujols if you can't read it, although they figure that Brandon Webb will end up winning it.

what on earth was his excuse for picking cliff lee for AL MVP?

hamilton and quentin aren't exactly runaways...and hamilton isn't on a contender...

great year...great pitching...great consistancy...but mvp?

btw...that stuff is all subscription.

hence, the "if you can't read it" comment...

Cliff Lee leads the AL in WARP-1 would be the argument. Kinsler and Mauer were 1 and 2 for position players in WARP-1. 

My vote goes to Joe Mauer. 

my vote goes to travis hafner.

thnx, btw.

MVP on a team that finishes in last place (or close to)? Yes there is precedence but it's totally stupid.

Second, he only plays in 35 games a season.

Pitching wins games and seasons.

That has nothing to do with it. How are you the MOST VALUABLE PLAYER when you didn't add that much value?

You take Cliff Lee off the Indians and they still suck.

They just suck a lot more then another team would suck taking their best player off the team. I'm not even having this argument because it's been had before. My bigger point is that a great pitcher to me adds more value to a team then a great hitter despite the every 5th day thing.

Also, a great pitcher can win you a World Series, a great hitter generally doesn't.

Totally wrong. I would an Albert Pujols or an A-Rod long before I took any pitcher. and as far as the MVP award goes, the World Series is meaningless.

"Also, a great pitcher can win you a World Series, a great hitter generally doesn't."

Somebody better tell Reggie Jackson.

"Generall" would mean that it typically doesn't happen. Not that it never happens.

The season's not over.

watch out for counterfeit tix? how can i tell?

selling cheap, ticketmaster tickets. Only tix scalper has.

Never happen to me, heard stories. You should be okay

I'm surprised by how many people want style points attached to wins. Would it have counted more if we had won 13-2 instead of 3-2?

well, considering how run differential is such a popular stat these days, yes, it would have counted for more.

I am mildly concerned about our offense...aisde from a couple gappers in Florida, the offense has really not been on all cylinders since leaving Atlanta. Lee's power has completely dissapapered, Aram isn't far behind, Fukudome looks more lost at the blate everyday. Thankfully, 1-8, the team is deep so there are enough people to drive in runs, but I'd feel much better if Lee and Aram could start hitting the ball out again.

what the hell?

aramis has a 1.315 OPS over the last 7 days entering today..and a 1.116 OPS in August. If you discount the one pinch-hitting  appearance in Florida, there's only 2 games in August he doesn't have a hit. 

I don't think Lee is a power hitter at this point. Look at his swing. Inside pitches, even middle-in, befuddle him. He has 380-390 power to center and right-center, so he hits a lot of doubles, not many HRs.

What was the first clue, 4 HR's in his last 277 at bats?

I was at the ballpark today -- very weird atmoshpere. No real excitment in the crowd -- first run was on a DPLee DP, which was more a cause for grumbling than cheering, then 2 solo shots from relatively unexpected sources (DeRo and Z) in the 2nd and 3rd -- no anticipation or build up. No offense at all after the 3rd inning. Z seemed mediocre against a crap lineup -- never really seemed in control (I mean, when you walk Corey...) and the crowd seemed frustrated by his mundane outing. Thank goodness for Henry Blanco's throwing.

Only real excitment in the crowd was for Kerry's final K.

Weird. Nice win, but weird.

I think Lou should sit Fukky all weekend. Something needs to change -- we can't have RF be an offensive wasteland for the rest of the year.

So the Cubs only won the Cincy series because Z pitched well and hit a home run?

Ground control to Cubs offense? Are you there?

Never in my life have I felt so "blah" about a team with the best record in baseball in August. I completely relate to the crowd's "weirdness".

Maybe it's that we're all so used to losing that we don't know how to handle a dominant Cub team. Or maybe we're jaded from what transpired in the '03 NLCS, so we're like, "yeah, the playoffs, who cares".

Part of the feeling is that nobody is hot right now, so there's not much anticipation when the big hitters come up. Theriot is the only regular hitting over .290 (and he only hits singles), DLee has hit 2 HRs since June 21st and is a DP machine, Fukky is a disaster, Soto's and Edmonds' power have cooled, Soriano had a blah series, Rammy hasn't yet had a really hot streak, etc...

..and yet, it's the best offense in MLB.

I have been to 15 games so far this year (14-1 and probably the first and last time this will ever happen).

I'd agree that most times the fans are pretty lethargic. Until there is a home run, or something else really exciting happens.

The exceptions are for the rivalry games - Milwaukee, Cards, Sox, and other division leaders - in my view those games people are much more attentive and into every inning.

I have noticed that for the "dog teams", many people around the park could care less what is happening on the diamond, and it a point of annoyance for me when someone at a loud pitch is talking about cell phones during a key AB, but that's just me perhaps.

In the games I have been to this year -- there seems to be more energy at night games than in day games. My searing insight -- beer helps.

Lee Elia approves.

Part of the feeling is that nobody is hot right now,

poor Aramis, Soto and DeRosa, a 1000+ OPS during the month just isn't what it use to be...

 (Reed, Z also over 1000, Blanco in the 950's for August) 


Yeah, I'm not sure I buy into that too much either. The team is playing fantastic, and has all year except for a few small stretches.

Yet, it doesn't feel like it. I'm convinced that most of us Cub fans are simply miserable beings and when the Cubs finally win the world series we'll all, collectively start bleeding from the ears as our brains explode inside our skulls.


Next crap outfit up is Washington--worst team in major league baseball.
still, I'm glad the Gnats ended their 12 game losing streak they can relax and start another one.

How in the world does Josh Fogg still have a job as an MLB pitcher? He has a craeer ERA of 5.07.

So they'll let some kid throw out the first pitch just because his old man named him "Wrigley", but they won't let the world's oldest Cubs fan throw one out?

Granted, the dude didn't move to Chicago until 1920 and has no recollection of the 1908 Cubs, but I still smell Cubbery!

looks like


There, everyone happy? No Fukudome :)

Recent comments

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  • 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).

  • I want my baseball team to win by playing better baseball. I don't want umps, fields, or fans to have anything to do with it.

  • Just with the chanting thing it worked to rattle Cueto last year where he dropped a ball and gave up a HR next pitch so you can't really hate on the fans for trying it again in this important of a game.

    Arietta though.

  • I felt the same way, too, but...

    I was very disappointed with Pittsburgh fans. At Wrigley a few weeks ago, they were very obnoxious guests, the cockiness on Twitter, and what's the deal with chanting Arrieta's name during the game? Very bush league. Add that up with Rodriguez's poor sportsmanship and you quickly have a team that you don't mind beating 4-0 in a do or die game.

  • Absolutely-It was tense. And when the Pirates couldn't push any runs across, you could see the frustration boil over.