Game #64 Preview: A's @ Cubs

The A's make their second-ever visit to Wrigley Field—the Cubs are the only National League never to have played in Oakland—having been swept this past weekend in San Francisco.

The weather forecast is not promising, with Weather.com saying there is a 100% chance of precipitation through the shank of the evening. Is there a rainout-forced doubleheader in these teams' immediate future? If there's anything better than interleague play, it's an interleague doubleheader made necessary by the screwy MLB schedule...which became infinitely screwier when MLB adopted interleague play.

The A's come in Foxless, having DFA's former Cub Jake Fox yesterday. Earlier today, the A's picked up first-baseman/left fielder Conor Jackson from the Diamondbacks. Jackson is not in the A's starting lineup; not sure if he will be in uniform tonight at all.

Speaking of the lineups...

A's vs. Carlos Zambrano (2-4, 6.05; 1-0, 1.35 vs. A's)
Davis 8, Barton 3, Sweeney 9, Suzuki 2, Kouzmanoff 5, Cust 7, Ellis 4, Pennington 6, Cahill 1

Cubs vs. Trevor Cahill (5-2, 2.91; first start vs. Cubs)
Theriot 4, Castro 6, Byrd 8, Lee 3, Colvin 9, Soriano 7, Tracy 5, Hill 2, Zambrano 1

Zambrano is making his third start since returning to the rotation. Last time out, he survived five walks over five innings to beat the Brewers. A's starter Trevor Cahill is coming off one of the best starts of his career, an eight-inning, one-run effort against the Angels. He has been successful recently by keeping the ball down in the strike zone and avoiding the longball—just one HR allowed over the past 33 innings.

Things you learn about the A's and Cubs from spending way too much time on Baseball-Reference.com:

Greatest former Cub who wound up playing for the A's: Billy Williams.

Winningest former Cub pitcher who wound up playing for the A's: Kenny Holtzman, who went 80-81 for the Cubs before joining the A's in 1972 and going 77-55 in four seasons.

Most petulant player who wore both Cub and Athletic uniforms: you might rush to say Milton Bradley. But I'm going to go with Dave Kingman, who was well on his way to the Jerk Hall of Fame before Milton had even played his first Little League Game.

Note: Baseball-Reference.com doesn't rank players by petulance. That one is my call.

This one's for you, Kong.

Comments

third basemen Conor Jackson?

I fixed that one.

link for Jerk Hall of Fame goes to Fox story, that one I can't fix.

Changed the Kingman link.

that Easter buffet looks fantastic...and what a price!!!

Sadly the offer expired 30 years ago.

http://www.suntimes.com/sports/baseball/cubs/...

Gordo Witt says some similar (maybe smart?) things to what I was ranting about in the thumb article. Basically, this team would be better mid-term to semi-blow it up now (although he mentions Ramy, who I think I'd keep).

But he's worried how the fans would take it....

http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/blog/puck_daddy/p...

Strasburg gets SI cover over Blackhawks, although Hawks cover will go out locally.

lol...americans and hockey...

izzo staying at michigan state, cavs not having a coach has to in someway help bulls in lebron chase.

To hell with the Yankees and their complicated shoes.

First pitch expected for 8:45pm CT:

http://twitter.com/carriemuskat

Only thru 4 but...

Suppan working on Cy Young:

4ip, 4hits, 1 run, 4 k's

Leading 3-1

Only blemish...solo HR M Bradley

Z struggling in the first again.

When Ramirez comes back I thought I saw whereif Tracy goes down to Iowa
he would have to clear waivers?

oh no!!!

Submitted by rokfish on Tue, 06/15/2010 - 8:06pm.
When Ramirez comes back I thought I saw whereif Tracy goes down to Iowa
he would have to clear waivers?

==============================================

ROKFISH: Chad Tracy is NOT out of options, but he does have to give his permission before he can be assigned to the minors (by optional or outright assignment) because he has accrued 5+ years of MLB Service Time. As a player with 5+ years of MLB ST, Tracy could opt to be a free-agent (and be paid his entire remaining salary as termination pay) if he is sent to the minors without his approval. While he did agree to the Optional Assignment when the Cubs sent him to Iowa in May (most players with 5+ MLB ST would have refused), he might not be as amenable to the idea this time.

Because the anniversary date of his debut on an MLB 25-man Active List was more than three years ago, Tracy would first have had to clear Optional Assignment Waivers when he was optioned to Iowa in May, but Optional Waivers (once secured) are good for the balance of the waiver period (which ends on July 31st), so the Cubs would not have to put him back on Optional Waivers before he can be optioned to the minors again (at least until the end of the current waiver period on July 31st). But again, even with waivers secured, he would have to agree to accept the assignment each time he is optioned to the minors.

I believe the article you read is the same one I saw, and I got the impression that the writer confused Tracy's status with that of Jeff Baker, who (unlike Tracy) is out of options, so that Baker would have to clear Outright Assignmment Waivers (which are irrevocable) before he can be outrighted to the minors. And because he has 3+ years of MLB Service Time, Baker can be a free-agent if he is outrighted to the minors (he can be a FA immediately and if he does he gets no termination pay, or he can accept the Outright Assignment, continue to be paid his $150K+ monthly salary in AAA, and defer free-agency until the end of the MLB regular season, unless he is added back to a 40-man roster by that time, in which case he cannot be a FA).

Tracy might be a good fit for the Angels. Or Twins.

At the gam behind home plate.. Two beers in... Cahills shit is wikis. Cubs ain't hitting this shit

*wikid. Dumb iPhone

Oh iPhone. I though it was a reflection of the Wrigley beer!

This is probably incredibly uncool to say, but I don't care... when I go to Wrigley, I enjoy the Old Style. Reminds me of being a kid... at my cousins house having Cubs baseball on TV in the afternoon... and the smell of my drunk uncle...

That drunk uncle part brought a sentimental tear to my eye.

Can you even get Old Style outside of the park? It's really not good. I don't mind drinking crap beer if it's what's available, but paying a lot for a crap beer just rubs me the wrong way.

Hells yeah you can get it!

Did Lee really have two errors in a row that caused runs?

he sure did.

muffed a grounder and then just didn't catch a ball thrown by castro.

Did Z gather his latin posse and fight the the rest of the team through song and dance a la west side story?

well-played Mauer.

fart

lol farts.

Sharks vs Jets...You throw the records out when those two teams get together.

gwahhh!!!

how much f'n cubbery can you fit into a game...2 wild pitches with 2 runs...bases loaded and error marathons...triples with errors? WHAT THE HELL?

and what was up with Z hitting for himself in the rally inning with a man on 2nd and 2 outs?

8-4...holy crap.

in honor of the Cubs new walk-up intros

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MK6TXMsvgQg

Lou needs to adopt this management style for players who commit errors, wild pitches and other stoopid stuff...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4ZgVRJ-H8U&fe...

wow...wrigley emptied out really quick after that 7th.

it's a ghost town.

the rain thinned the initial crowd, but this looks like a PIT game.

that colvin HR hit a lot of empty seats in the bleachers.

Yeah what the f=== was up with Zambrano hitting then coming out of game, I am all for seeing more ghost towns.
Seems the only reason i watch is to watch the three C's and laugh at how piss poor the rest of team plays.

the game plan would be to get the ball to Colvin.

Foolishly I was holding out hope that Lou would unload in the post-game press conference and give vent to just a fraction of the frustration that all Cub fans are feeling right now. Instead, it was just the same, old, mealy-mouthed nonsense. "Just one of those games," "Zambrano deserved better," "Gotta go out tomorrow and play better."

You tell 'em, Lou.

Where has Jim Hendry been lately have not seen any quotes from him recently.

preparing his resume.

Hendry's resume is much more attractive the team he's put together for 2010, which I suspect is what (unfortunately for him) future employers will remember most.

From Bruce Miles blog:

As I blogged earlier in the day, I've got to believe Theriot is a non-tender this fall if the Cubs don't trade him first.

Posted by Bruce on Tue, 06/15/2010 - 22:27

http://blogs.dailyherald.com/node/4230

Many of us were thinking the same thing. But it's nice to see a beat guy say it.

Don't look now, but Samardzija is quietly having a good season at Iowa.

Coleman and Archer dominated yesterday. Coleman "retired the last 21 batters he faced, not allowing a man to reach base after the second batter of the game." His line: 7 innings, 2 hits, 1 run, 0 walks, 8 strikeouts.

Archer (Daytona) had no walks and 10 K's in 5.1.

If anyone brings up the 2007 start I will come over to their house and pour a bucket of sour milk on to their computer.

At my own risk, I will bring it up. On June 16, 2007 the Cubs were 31-35, and the won the division with 85 wins, just 8 games over .500. Today they are 28-36, and the Reds and Cardinals are already 7 games over .500, on pace for 90 wins. And the 2007 was actually good. It ain't happening this year.

great!
now I have to drive around with a gallon of milk in my trunk for a week.

That was the most dispiriting game I've seen in quite some time. The team looked absolutely horrible.

Recent comments

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  • Some perspective (mostly for my own benefit): Dan Straily beat MadBum 2-1 today as the Reds took 2 of 3 in SF. Giants are 2-9 since the break and their lead over LA is down to 2.5 games. So, yeah...baseball. It'll drive ya nuts.

    billybucks 38 min 10 sec ago view
  • McNutt / Archer didn't work out well for us.

    QuietMan 54 min 21 sec ago view
  • The floor is more valuable than the ceiling. It's the same reason we drafted Kris Bryant instead of Jon Gray.

    John Beasley 1 hour 39 min ago view
  • Apparently the Yankees had the choice of either Gleyber Torres or Eloy Jimenez in the Chapman deal, and they chose Torres. 

    link 

    Arizona Phil 2 hours 33 min ago view
  • Chapman shouldn't be reserved anymore on 40 man.

    chitownmvp01 6 hours 24 min ago view
  • Interesting split on Heyward according to ESPN. As a CF, his slash line .292/.363/.375/.738. At RF: .212/.204/.300/.604. 21/72 as a CF, 58/273 as a RF.

    He's also been better when batting 2nd, but he had a nice start in the 6 hole, but has slumped ever since. He was heating up before the All Star break, but is only hitting .108 in the 2nd half.

    chitownmvp01 6 hours 32 min ago view
  • When we played the Reds with Chapman, I always thought of it as an eight-inning game. So now other teams have eight innings to try to get a lead against the Cubs. Should be a challenge, assuming three or four Cubs ever start hitting again.

    I don't really try to get to know and like these players personally. I'm rooting for laundry, for the most part. Exceptions might be when a player makes trouble in the clubhouse or in the dugout. (Zambrano and Bradley come to mind. Also Papelbon.) But I don't think Chapman is one of those jerks.

    VirginiaPhil 10 hours 5 min ago view
  • Unfortunately, a pretty good summary. It looks like next year Heyward will be getting yet another batting stance adjustment.

    The recent good news has been Baez. I'm afraid about the next league adjustment on him, though, which is probably right around the corner.

    Bryant I don't worry about too much. Just not seeing the ball well right now. He'll turn it around. Russell's been good with men in scoring position all year and he's 22ish. He'll be fine but next year is likely to be his breakout year.

    Old and Blue 12 hours 8 min ago view
  • If Travis' back-to-back-to-back walks cost Hendricks the ERA title, that would really suck.

    billybucks 21 hours 11 min ago view
  • Edit: "A lifeless loss to a lousy Sox team."

    billybucks 21 hours 54 min ago view
  • This place is a real downer after a loss to the Sox.

    Charlie 22 hours 4 min ago view
  • I expect they will go 5-9 games above .500 the rest of the year. 96-98 wins will win the Division.

    They should have one more 2-3 week hot streak in them.

    However, several players are just "average" for the last month: Zobrist, Ross, Russell, Ceasar. Montero is terrible, plus he cannot throw anyone out. -WAR. Heyward is abysmal at the plate, but a plus in the OF. Still with RISP he has been terrible. KB has not been driving in runs as of late. But Apparently the team is still above average with RISP according to S Sahadev.

    The E-Man 22 hours 11 min ago view
  • I came to that realization tonight. I kept expecting them to play better, but now I realize they aren't going to. They are a .500 team now.
    - They have one reliable starting pitcher. Jake's magic is gone, and it doesn't look like it's coming back. Lester has been lousy recently. Lackey's ERA goes up every time he pitches.
    - Heyward has been dead weight all year. I can't remember a single series where he was a significant offensive contributor. Not one. Great defense, but but if he were hitting .270 with 10 HR and played average defense, the Cubs would be better off.

    billybucks 22 hours 15 min ago view
  • new rule...no one's allowed to throw k.bryant a changeup

    crunch 22 hours 26 min ago view
  • Team is .500 since early May and is playing like a .500 team. Lack of offense seems to be putting a lot of pressure on the pitchers...and they aren't handling it terribly well.

    .500 the rest of the way still may win the division though.

    blockhead25 22 hours 31 min ago view
  • ...i hate espn.

    nothing like settling into a cubs game to get a few minutes cutaway for an ortiz AB in the 6th inning of the det/bos game.

    oh, at least they're doing split screen now...i guess.

    crunch 22 hours 47 min ago view