Bad Cold War cartoon: Castro, Kennedy fire missiles at each other.


After finishing this drawing yesterday, I realized that the historical significance of this matchup might not only be lost on some of you, but not interesting and perhaps in bad taste to most of you as well.
So, uh, lets just talk about the fabulous entertainment our favorite team gave us last night.

Featuring a monster homer, a frightened DBack 3rd baseman, a stupid DBack pitcher, clutch hitting, clutch walking, an ejection, and the first win for Cub Matt Garza, this game had it all.

First, the top of the 2nd.
Alfonso Soriano got ahold of one. There's a giant green wall under and around the scoreboard at Chase Field, and even on hi-def the light was so flat (with no shadow) I couldn't tell where it hit. But this ball was so crushed...I wish they'd keep the radar on balls that get hit. 
I read a Paul Sullivan re-tweet that said: "Richie Sexson in 2004 is the only other hitter to hit scoreboard before Soriano tonight." 

Then, the 4th.
Starlin Castro did indeed hit a missile (grounder) past overmatched DBack 3rd baseman Melvin Mora, who deftly moved his feet as if to appear ready to field a ball that clearly gave him the fear, and then like a matador watched it go by for a double.
Not to be outdone, pitcher Ian Kennedy idiotically decides to pitch to Freaky Hot Alfonso Soriano with Castro on 3rd, 1st and 2nd open, and 2 outs.
Soriano drills it.
Cubs 2 DBacks 1.

With Darwin Barney on 1st, Aramis Ramirez hits a pitch that's about 10 feet inside. It goes deep into the LF corner and Barney, a hustling machine, scores standing up.

Top of the 9th. 
With Byrd on 1st, Soto crappily bunts right back to closer J.J. Putz, who wheels and throws it to where SS Stephen Drew was before he ran over to cover second. Stretching like a 1st baseman, Drew barely keeps a toe on the bag before falling. Byrd's out and...hey wait just a darn second here. 
Mike Quade is either really really angry or just doing his part to fire up the team with some awesome acting, because he's got his arms behind his back (to keep from punching anybody?) and...yelling at the ump, pointing to where Drew was, running around, getting in the ump's face...and tossed!
I immediately put him in the 5% Cooler Club as he stalks off the field. 
And now it's Tyler Colvin.
He goes 0-2 and I'm waiting for the strike out...but hey wait just a darn 9 more pitches here.
He walks, brilliantly.
With guys on 1st and 2nd and now 2 outs, 2 balls, and 2 strikes, Darwin Barney clutchly hits one right at and past Putz, who is still sitting on his ass when Soto crosses the plate.
Loud non-words from my mouth, beer spills on coffee table, and I'm told to stop scaring the dogs as Starlin knocks in the last run and Len reminds us that all the Cub runs tonight came with 2 outs.


And it also means that Matt Garza, who set a Cub strikeout record for April, gets the W.

For a couple 4th place teams, this was just a wonderful game.

Lastly, I didn't mention that Other Freaky Hot Hitter Jeff Baker did something bad to himself while at bat, and since he was already playing for trainwreck Carlos Pena, I'm hoping Mr. Quade sees fit to put Tyler Colvin at first today.

 Go Cubs.



My bad, I know Kennedy's a righty.
Too late to change it.

Sori bats 5th...

lenandbob: #Cubs lineup on @WGNTV today at 3: Kosuke9/Barney4/Castro6/ARam5/Soriano7/Byrd8/Pena3/Geo2/Coleman1

leadoff doubles are a good start...go fuku.

getting your 2nd xbase hit of the season in may...sigh fuku.

...and no run scores...super.

leadoff doubles in the 2nd is a good start...go sori

Who is this soriano guy?

coleman is literally shaking on the mound, especially his glove hand...yet he flies through the 1st 1/2/3.

jeff baker, d2d, sore left shoulder

Which is slower Sori running to third or pena's bat speed?

The story is last year Lou ordered pre printed batting order sheets with Soto's name in 8 th spot.

With attendance down, Ricketts won't order new ones until the other ones are used up.



Gregg in to blow it fir O's

Ump bails out Gregg

balking the runner in...classic cubbery...and it even gives up the lead.

4-3 ..STOOPID loss of the year. Q-Ball totally out-managed today as he is almost every day.

Didn't see the game, only read ESPN update...would love to hear how Q was outmanaged (I am not the biggest Quade fan by any stretch).

Certainly wasn't fully evident from summary, but I don't doubt it happened.

My first thought would be that Quade put Jeff Baker in, probably under the reasoning that he has been "hot" so far this year, while ignoring that almost all of his success is against lefties and that he appears virtually useless against righties.

He has been a bit better this year against righties. However, since both Fuke and Pena were in the game, guess which lefty was left on the bench?

Of the two, I'd rather have Baker by a longshot.

I would rather have johnson and DeWitt hitting over an injured Baker.

Actually, I forgot about DeWitt.

Baker is 8 for 30 (.267) off righties this year. The other options were Dewitt, Johnson, or Hill. Johnson is 7 for 15 off righties this year, and would have been my choice. Especially given Baker's sore shoulder. He is also a veteran who likely wouldn't ground into a DP on the VERY FIRST pitch.

Baker is a vet, just a bad one.

Soto also took 4 straight balls b4 Baker's at bat.

Can't wait to see where he bats tomorrow, I know where soto will be batting.

I saw that Iowa Cubs released Jake Muyco.

I guess we can put one failure in the column for converted catchers to pitchers to go with the positives (Marmol and Wells).

Because we all know that the Cubs need more bullpen arms and are in no need of starting pitching
"The Smokies rotation took a hit this week when Rafael Dolis, their most consistent starter to this point, was moved to the bullpen at the behest of the Chicago Cubs. Dolis, who is on the Cubs' 40-man roster, had a rough outing in his first relief appearance Saturday night, giving up four unearned runs in what eventually was a 7-6 Smokies loss."

Also in that article:

"Sunday the Smokies got a tremendous start from No. 2 Chicago Cubs pitching prospect Trey McNutt. McNutt, a right-hander, had a shutout going into the seventh inning when a blister on the middle finger of his throwing hand forced a wild pitch that allowed Carolina's Mike Costanzo to cross the plate. McNutt was immediately taken out of the game. This is the second time this season that McNutt has missed time with a blister on his finger."

Who is #1 pitching prospect if McNutt is #2?



Chris Archer of course.



I suspect that was supposed to say "#2 prospect, pitcher Trey McNutt" or something to that effect.

that must be it

I've got blisters on mah fingers
John Lennon had the same problem, Imagine that.

That was Ringo who said that.

/it don't come easy

Nice catch there, jacos!

d-backs score 3 w/ a single & we have 3 innings w/ man on 2nd & no outs that end up goose eggs...but hey,in the silver lining dept., pena almost hit a homerun which would have broken the tie between hill & the power combo of pena & ramirez!

Oh, yes. I forgot to add that it is plainly obvious that the Cubs play 10x better in warmer weather.

With rain in the forecast all weekend against the Reds, look for a Redlegs sweep.

" I was in Chicago for roughly four years and I had three different ownership groups," Piniella said Monday on "The Mully & Hanley Show" on WSCR-AM 670. "That's not the easiest thing in the world, either."

Yeah that really tied your hands behind your back, Lou.

via rotoworld

Carlos Pena (thumb) will continue to play through his recent slump.
His thumb isn't yet 100 percent, but Pena and Cubs manager Mike Quade have apparently come to an agreement. Pena, who signed a one-year, $10 million contract over the winter, is batting just .167 with 23 strikeouts over his first 66 at-bats. It's tough to recommend him in fantasy right now, especially if Jeff Baker continues to see at-bats against left-handers and some right-handers, as well

they had a closed-door meeting...was wondering what came out of it.

Recent comments

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  • I support this. Hendricks has not only looked better lately but seems to start struggling after a few innings which is better than the 1st in the playoffs.

  • Just tweeted via Jesse Rogers: Hendricks starting Game 2. Wow. Just wow.

  • That was good!

  • 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.