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)


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.

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


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

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.


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.

Recent comments

The first 600 characters of the last 16 comments, click "View" to see rest of comment.
  • i dont know what order they'll be in, but i pretty much expect fowler/schwarb/rizzo/bryant/montero/castro/lastella/arrieta. any change at all (aside from the first 4 guys) wouldn't shock me, though. coghlan is still a wildcard in the lineup joe could always march d.ross out there with very slow arrieta pitching.

  • Yup. Have to agree. Baseball, like golf, certainly has that psych component for the player. There is no real reason why a fielding position should affect a batting average. The Cubs are 106 years over due for a little luck. Don't you guys think so? Maybe the rookies can bring some dumb luck on.

  • probably stacking capable lefties vs cole while keeping the "hot" castro in the game. fwiw, he's 1-6 lifetime with 0 bb/k vs cole (double).

    i chalk bryant's issues at the plate while playing OF up to coincidence so far.

  • I will call your dead horse, "Trigger".

    In one game, when anything is possble, I am glad that Joe Maddon is our Manager.

    He knows the stats better than all of us. It would seem, IF La Stella gets the start at 3B, it will be only up to the point that they were to get the lead (crosses fingers). From everything I have read, the game will be managed like a hoops game: offense/defense. So expect La Stella to be out of the game by the 5th. This team is incredibly deep which is so surprising. We never woulda thunk it.

  • i don't know what their roster plans are, but j.herrera is out there practicing with the team.

    i can't imagine him making any roster, though. dude had 4 PA the entire month of sept. him being a good dude to be around while keeping the clubhouse loose seems to be his main role at this point.

  • I know it's my own personal dead horse to beat --but Bryant has been a lousy hitter when playing the OF this year. Given that it's his first playoff game, I really hope they keep him in his natural position and don't mess with his routine.

    Lousy as in 8-for-45 with one XBH and no HR. Small sample and all that -- but why take the chance?

  • hard to tell what's up given they'll probably want to stack as many good lefties into the lineup as possible.

    castro being a bit hot doesn't help things. if he was still cool they'd probably stick la stella at 2nd and call it a day.

  • Madden won't announce lineups but Stella is practicing at 3rd and Bryant in LF today. I'd rather see Bryant at 3rd but I guess Stella has been hotter than Coghlan.

    /edit. Though I guess they could be practicing this with the idea Stella would come in as a PH then double switch him to 3rd base and Bryant to LF. Hope that's the plan instead

  • I really like the sound of that idea about expanding the AFL to ten teams. Each org. gets to field more players.
    They should do that anyway, regardless of Adv. Instructs.

  • Dallas Beeler, Corey Black, David Garner, Pierce Johnson, Steve Perakslis, James Pugliese, Duane Underwood Jr, and Rob Zastryzny threw early-morning bullpen side-sessions at Riverview yesterday.  

    Underwood threw last, and received specific one-on-one instruction from pitching coach Mike Mason. 

  • HAGSAG: There are only five advanced instructs squads left, and presently the only "co-op" team operating is the Angels/Cubs.

    The league was originally established as a "parallel" league to the AFL (a sort of "junior AFL"), for players too advanced for traditional ("basic") instructs but who were unable to get placed on AFL rosters due to AFL player-limits.

  • He is but I would think it'd be better to start out with offense and then bring in Jackson and LaStella once they have a lead. Stella has very good PH #s too.

  • most likely cost sharing + the league is short on players anyway. not many teams are chipping in on 'advanced instructional.'

  • I'm glad this is a one game playoff coming up, because McCutchen is one of my favorite MLB players. And as a baseball fan, I rather like the Pirates. I hope we beat them bad, of course. No mixed feelings here. And, I don't want a nail biter. Too old for that shit. The team of moran fans is easy to hate, though, and more suitable for a longer series.

  • A Jurickson Profar sighting!!!!???

  • I'd guess Jackson over Coghlan for the defense.

    EDIT: Now that I think about it, is Jackson a better defender?