Sunday Game Thread / Diamondbacks (11-13) @ Cubs (12-13)

Cubs try to take three of four from Arizona and end the homestand 4-3. Feels a lot like last weekend, when the Cubs were trying to salvage a road trip that started awfully, with three losses in four games at CitiField, then ended on an up note with the sweep at Milwaukee.

Sunday's lineups:

D-backs: 1. Abreu (2B)  2. Drew (SS)  3. Upton (RF)  4. Reynolds (3B)  5. Young (CF)  6. Ryal (1B)  7. Gillespie (LF)  8. Hester (C)  9. Jackson (P)

Cubs: 1. Theriot (SS)  2. Fukudome (RF)  3. Lee (1B)  4. Byrd (CF)  5. Tracy (3B)  6. Soriano (LF)  7. Fontenot (2B)  8. Soto (C)  9. Gorzelanny (P)


Comments

from Bruce Levine's blog...Z may close (if needed) on sunday, Caridad update (going to Iowa this week) and who has to pitch their ass off this week or wind up in Iowa:

Reliever Esmailin Caridad will continue his rehab in Arizona Saturday, then continue on to Triple-A Iowa where he’ll pitch Tuesday. Piniella said that Caridad will most likely join the team’s bullpen next weekend if there are no setbacks in his rehab.

With the addition of Caridad, the team will have to make a roster move. For now there is no plan to move Carlos Zambrano back to the rotation. One of the young pitchers, either James Russell, Jeff Gray or Justin Berg will go to the minors when Caridad returns.

http://espn.go.com/blog/chicago/cubs/post/_/i...

I like this Soriano kid - where did we get him?

LOL!

It's sure fun when he gets hot, isn't it?

I'm recording this game but are they not throwing him breaking stuff down and away or is he just laying off that stuff now?

One thing I really do like about Soriano is how he sort of just lays it all out there. Yesterday he said his knee bothered him and he would think about his knee as the pitch came in and that messed with his concentration.

Even his "I'm afraid of the wall" thing doesn't bother me. He is honest, and that's pretty damn cool.

Of course, I'm all pro-Soriano right now.

IF he comes back, this could be a pretty good team. I forget how much he means to us when he is right.

He's laying off them, when they're strikes he's taking them to left, and he's pretty much hitting anything he swings at.

We could have a really good team if we get the 2006-2008 Soriano and Fukudome continues to hit like a #3 hitter.

The Cubs have six starters hitting over .300, none of them named Lee or Ramirez.

The Cubs have four starters with ERA's under 3.45, none of them named Zambrano or Lilly.

Seems a little bit like Opposite World to me. Maybe everybody but me saw this coming.

what did poor Edwin Jackson do to be kept in this game?

Len and Bob speculate that it's because the AZ bullpen has been shitty.

Isn't shitty one of those broadcast words they can't use? WHOSE MINDING THE STORE OVER AT WGN????!!!!!

Last I heard, they hired Lee Elia to take care of censorship.

I think part of it was that they didn't feel like he was tired, and were hoping he could work through his problems. He's a converted OF'er, who's pretty good with the bat, so that may have got him through the third when they had a PHer up for him.

Parachat sucks. I finally get a chance and it's empty.

Everyone knew you were gonna be on it today, TJ :-)

...a tear falls.

As TRN just said, where did we get this new kid, Soriano. It's like Hendry just made a big trade.

he's no bobby scales.

ba dum bump

More shocking: Tyler Colvin with a .965 OPS or the Cubs have three other guys playing well enough to keep him on the bench?

TRN, wasn't Colvin's minor league record pretty piss poor about walks?

A lot of times when teams have a good overall walk record it means the hitting coach is teaching a philosophy of patience but I thought Rudy came in with the rep of being pretty aggressive at the plate.

I'm beginning to think he really is maybe a really good hitting coach and he knows the hitters on this team are not exactly the most patient at the plate and he's working on that.

Then again, that was what a lot of us liked about Gerald Perry -- he got dudes to work the count. Maybe I'm just underestimating some of these guys. I mean, D Lee has always been good at working the count, Ramirez, too.

But Soriano? Colvin?

Ummm, no.

I'm feeling kind of optimistic, suddenly.

Yes, he didn't walk much in the minors - and when he tried to it made him a worse hitter. I think the fact that he is healthy and 25 extra pounds of muscle are the big changes this year - he slugged the ball pretty well in AA last year.

Fukudome is definitely swinging at more pitches earlier in the count this year, so I don't think it's any new philosophy we're seeing.

Theriot sucks. doesn't he know a blow out when he sees one? Bring up the kid!

"i miss you guys!" - mark grace

Adrian Gonzalez says he'll boycott ASG next year

http://mlb.fanhouse.com/2010/05/02/padres-gon...

the practice of "media outlets" having a 1/4-1/2 page of auto-expanded user comments needs to end. uggg.

Interesting in this article serves two purposes. It gives us Adrian Gonzalez's opinions on various topics, and it is probably the strongest argument I've seen for players postpone their baseball careers for at least three years and attend college.

I agree that the reader comments are ridiculous, but what is it about Gonzales's statements that sounds ignorant or uneducated?

The statements about the law or the umpiring? The law being discriminatory, for one, is an apallingly stupid thing to say. Of course it's discriminatory, all laws are, that's their intent. But even putting that aside, the law isn't discriminatory, it's the way that he thinks that the law will be enforced which is. It's not like if the AZ police find a caucasian Slovakian in the country illegally they're going to let him go because he's white. That would be discriminatory.

Sorry parachat's been so empty. I will take some of the responsibility. I've been busy and whatnot. Saturday I was at the Detroit-Anaheim game. Damon hit a fun walk-off homer. Kazmir is pretty damn good (even though they lost the game). And if I were Cabrera's wife, I'd beat HIM for his shitty defense.

I got a really good laugh out of that domestic violence joke. Well done.

Johnny Gomes: .217 .254 .367 .620

Marlon Byrd: .351 .367 .585 .952

You did good on this so far, Hendry.

byrd was f'n cheap, imo, for a CF/LF and "good enough" RF type with his build and swing.

Shouldn't you be comparing Gomes to Nady (.194 .342 .290 .633)? I don't remember a lot of people lobbying the Cubs to sign Gomes to play center field.

i thought he was a pretty good deal, too... :(

...prove me wrong nady.

I thought at the time the Nady money would have been better spent on Capps or Greg - going to be hard for this current roster to prove me wrong on that.

Well, NEAL, I am basing this on the three players that were reported to have been considered as the "Bradley Replacement" - Gomes, Dye, and Byrd.

Nady was strictly a LRisk/HRew "insurance" type player coming off injury.

However, I still think "Nads" will come around - but if the current guys keep up their pace, it will be tough for him to get much PT.

OK... to the rest of us, though, Bradley's replacement was going to be a center fielder who could push Fukudome to right field. Ankiel was mentioned, I liked Crisp - but search around a little, you won't find anyone who thought those two guys you mentioned were candidates to be a starter for the Cubs in 2010. The Cubs went after Dye, after they signed Byrd, for example. What they were looking for, other than a center fielder was someone who could platoon in right field with Fukudome. The candidates for that were Dye and Nady, and some media and fans tried to throw Gomes' name into the conversation, though I don't think the Cubs seriously considered it.

And I recall Gomes briefly campaigning to be a Cub (which means the media was stoking the rumor mill more than Gomes being a strong consideration by Cub management).

I see your point. Management did want to push Dome back to RF, which the Byrd signing allowed. Dye, Nady, and Gomes were candidates for platoon partners - as well as insurance for Fukudome should he stink it up at the plate as he did last year after the first month. Recent reports have said there were "conversations" between the Cubs and Dye, but it did not amount to a formal offer at any time. At least that's what "Bruuuuuce", says.

Cubs allegedly offered Dye the same contract Nady signed for before they signed Nady

I doubt the Cubs offered Dye the same contract. I'm not going to say why, because then I'll be in trouble, but you know.

I am surprised by Byrd. He's much more than I expected him to be.

So far he's Joe Dimaggio. I like it, but I wouldn't expect it to last.

I don't expect the astronomical ball mashing to last, no, but I expect him to continue to make the opposing pitcher work to get him out and I expect him to play hard defense.

I wanted Gomes, cheap source of power, who knows where his batting average would be, but you could do worse in RF. Bobby Scales anyone?

Byrd's splits scared me, but hey so far so good. At least he shows up to play baseball and you don't have to worry about walking on egg shells to get through the day with him.

FREE BOBBY SCALES!

Yeah, everybody gets worried about Texas player's splits, but you've got to keep in mind that the three other teams in their division play in pitcher's parks.

Byrd's done about what I expect with the glove and been a good RBI man on a team that needs one - can't complain about him... give me a month, though.

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  • In all seriousness the Cubs have the fewest amount of games played in the NL which means they're gonna be facing quite the grind later on including 24 games in a row at the end of June and beginning of July so I hope he does get a few days off.

    johann 1 hour 32 min ago view
  • Meh. He only got one hit today. Maybe give him a rest?

    Old and Blue 2 hours 7 min ago view
  • 34-14...awww yeah.

    crunch 3 hours 4 min ago view
  • Good thing the Cubs have five left-handed batters in the lineup. Velasquez is just tearing thru the righties [edit - doesn't seem to faze Bryant!]

    Eric S 4 hours 25 min ago view
  • ben zobrist gets to ride up front tonight cause he's a good guy at sports.

    cubs with a 5 run lead and a lackey shutout through 3ip \m/

    crunch 4 hours 59 min ago view
  • HAGSAG: I have not seen Joe Nathan out on the field, but he is supposedly at the UAPC. 

    Arizona Phil 7 hours 55 min ago view
  • ERIC S: Best outing I've ever seen from Manny Rondon, and I've seen most of his outings since the Cubs got him from the Angels. 

    M. Rondon is competing with six others (Dylan Cease, Bryan Hudson, Jose Paulino, Pedro Silverio, Jesus Castillo, and Erling Moreno) for a starting slot at Eugene, and (as you can probably tell from the EXST box scores)  the competition has gotten fierce over the last couple of weeks, With the exception of Moreno, the Eugene SP candidates have upped their game lately, and M. Rondon's outing yesterday was especially impressive/dominating. 

    Arizona Phil 7 hours 58 min ago view
  • E-MAN: Pierce Johnsion was mixing a 92-94 MPH fastball with a plus-change-up AND curve, and he threw strike-after-strike-after-strike with all three of his pitches. I believe that was the best command and pitch-efficiency I've ever seen from Johnson, who often pitches from behind in the count and issues too many walks.  

    Of course now he has to avoid a recurrence of the lat strain (whch he has had previously in his career) as well as all of the other miscellaneous physical problems he's had over the last three years (hamstring, quad, back, etc).  

    Arizona Phil 8 hours 7 min ago view
  • PHIL: Any movement on P. Johnsons pitches? What was his "out" pitch? I know he was working on a 4th pitch, so wondering what he is looking like these days. Thanks.

    The E-Man 8 hours 50 min ago view
  • AZ Phil, has Nathan showed up in Mesa yet? Thanks.

    Hagsag 13 hours 36 min ago view
  • Eickhoff looks like a good young pitcher. Lets steal him!

    Hagsag 13 hours 37 min ago view
  • Manny Rondon faced 13 batters ... and got 10 to K. Not a bad day's work.

    Eric S 23 hours 18 min ago view
  • With several other Cubs hitters bailing out on curves today I think overall it wasn't being seen well. It for sure looked silly but a good breaking pitch coming at you and then breaking down isn't the easiest thing to see and has made many hitters look silly. Also Soler should have more walks this year but for quite a few called strikes that were actual balls and even the called strike he bailed on was borderline.

    johann 1 day 2 hours ago view
  • it's not like we're talking about a guy who's never had issues with pitch selection and seeing the ball over here. we're talking about a guy who has some rather legendary swing-and-misses at breaking stuff who's been exploited low. going forward it's worth paying attention to seeing if he can be exploited inside, too. he seriously bailed out of the box on a called strike. sure it was a good curve, but he obviously didn't see that well at all.

    crunch 1 day 2 hours ago view
  • It would seem like he is figuring it out now and it's really coming together. Really happy for him. Joe was really protecting him from the 3rd time through the order, but as you allude to, he is earning trust to go deeper.

    Wondering if has potential to become a #3 pitcher? His current stats certainly support it.

    The E-Man 1 day 2 hours ago view
  • That doesn't count b/c CRUNCH didn't see it on his 60" HDTV 5 times in replay.

    I have seen many players "bail out" when the ball looked like it was gonna hit them.

    Especially with the advent of the splitter and pitchers that can really get the ball to dance. Marmol, Sutter, Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Smoltz, Arrietta...

    These guys have made the best bail out only for the ball to come over the plate and be called a strike.

    No shame in that. The same way players whiff hard enough to cause them to drill a hole in the ground from spinning.

    The E-Man 1 day 2 hours ago view