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.

5th.
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.

Wow.

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.

 

Comments

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.

nice

lol.

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."
http://www.knoxnews.com/news/2011/may/01/smok...

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?

Russell?

zing

Chris Archer of course.

boo

ha@!

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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  • heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.

    he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.

    crunch 24 min 7 sec ago view
  • stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.

    that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.

    crunch 1 hour 30 min ago view
  • brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.

    crunch 2 hours 19 min ago view
  • Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 49 min ago view
  • video of Maddon.

    http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561343809737202839-4

    always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.

    Rob G. 22 hours 18 sec ago view
  • from Muskat:

    #Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs

    Rob G. 22 hours 5 min ago view
  • http://www.espn.com/espn/now?nowId=21-0561339391889382475-4

    Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.

    Rob G. 22 hours 10 min ago view
  • great defense

    Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.

    Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.

    I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.

    Rob G. 22 hours 22 min ago view
  • If all the starters have FIP > ERA, is that luck or good defense?

    Craig A. 22 hours 33 min ago view
  • #Cubs plummet to 19-5 in August.

    Fun with FIP

    • J. Hammel   3.07 ERA/4.27 FIP (3.68 FIP last year)
    • J. Arrieta     2.62 ERA/3.05 FIP (2.35 FIP last year)
    • J. Lester     2.81 ERA/3.67 FIP (2.92 FIP last year)
    • K. Hendricks  2.19 ERA/3.37 FIP (3.36 FIP last year)
    • J. Lackey     3.41 ERA/3.72 FIP (3.57 FIP last year with Cards)
    Rob G. 22 hours 58 min ago view
  • zastyryzryzryzny put in 3.2ip 1h 0bb 3k

    he's great when his control is "on"...problem is it's rarely "on" consistently. he could vault up the cubs prospect list if he ever gets better with that aspect of his game.

    crunch 23 hours 38 min ago view
  • JD's take was just trying to get in a lefty to better deal with mostly lefty Dodgers lineup.

    My second thought was what you came up with. My first thought was he was trying to light a fire under Hammel.

    Jackstraw 1 day 51 min ago view
  • Maybe he was trying to spare him another brutal road start? NY, Colorado...

    billybucks 1 day 1 hour ago view
  • joe got a pitcher up for hammel at nearly the 1st sign of trouble in the 3rd...pulled after 2.1

    not injured and though it wasn't his day so far he wasn't looking like a pure disaster.

    really short leash on him. zastryznzryzryny in.

    crunch 1 day 1 hour ago view
  • Russell and Soler can attest that Urias has a pretty good curve/slider - two big strikeouts looking to get out of that jam in the first.

    Eric S 1 day 1 hour ago view
  • Classic Scully - great stuff.

    Thank God we'll still have Hawk next season. (cricket cricket cricket)

    Eric S 1 day 6 hours ago view