Game 15...oh whatever, who cares?

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SP *Johan Santana SP *Sean Marshall
14-7, 2.65, 187 K, 58 BB, 217.1 IP
3-4, 3.62, 50 K, 19 BB, 59.2 IP
SS #Jose Ryes LF Alfonso Soriano
2B #Luis Castillo SS Ronny Cedeno
3B David Wright 1B Derrek Lee
CF #Carlos Beltran CF Reed Johnson
1B *Carlos Delgado 2B Mark DeRosa
C Ramon Castro 3B Casey McGehee
RF *Ryan Church RF *Kosuke Fukudome
LF Nick Evans C Henry Blanco
P *Johan Santana P *Sean Marshall


You'd think Lou would let his regulars get some hacks against Johan, since they may see him in the first round, but he seems to have gone the opposite route and sits most some of his regulars. Curious.

The Cubs want to try and take 2 of 3 or at least 1 of 3 from the Mets and hope the Brewers take 2 of 3 from the Pirates or sweep them. That would set up a tie between the Mets and the Brewers heading into the final weekend and increases the odds of them having to use their aces (C.C. or Johan) late in the season. That's more of a concern with the Mets when it comes to the Cubs playoff situation, but the more innings C.C. racks up now, the better chance he'll be less effective by the time the Cubs may face him in the playoffs. The Cubs also need to win 5 of 6 for 100 wins assuming the Monday make-up versus the Astros is not played.


reed johnson batting 4th.

bringing mailing-it-in to a new level with that one.

Reed is 10 of 19 off Johan with a 1.287 OPS and .737 SLG.

.861 OPS with a .460 SLG vs lefties in 2008 for Reed.

with Aramis and Soto sitting, the only other player in the lineup that would make sense is DeRosa who has a slightly higher OPS and SLG vs lefties this year (.871 and .475)

so bat him 1st or 2nd...i still find it pretty mailed in for a singles/doubles hitter.

and bat Ronny 4th?

he's been batting Reed 5th vs lefties for most of the year, moving him up just because of Aramis sitting. Cubs are also scoring more runs than anyone else and beating lefties for once, so what's the issue?

"and bat ronnie 4th?"

are you serious?

You two are such a cute couple.

no, I was asking you who should bat 4th?

looked a lot like something else given the way you asked...especially since i never mentioned cedeno.

either way, that #5 hitter looks good for starters...the one with 20 about moving johnson up to hitting 1/2 slot if he's so adept?

i can see an argument for johnson hitting 2nd a lot more than hitting 4th, but whatever.

if you can't see my logic i dunno how to give you more to work with.

well yeah, I think i said and showed that DeRosa was the only other one really worth batting 4th tonight. But if can't see that Reed has hit well and with power against lefties and Johan, I dunno how to give you more to work with.

never said i didnt see your side of it and i wasn't arguing against it.

i was asked what my issue was...i gave my explanation.

i'm not struggling to understand your view or arguing against just explaining what im being called out for.

Costello: What's the guy's name on first base?

Abbott: No. What is on second.

Costello: I'm not asking you who's on second.

Abbott: Who's on first.

Costello: I don't know.

Abbott: He's on third, we're not talking about him.

maybe you missed this:

Reed is 10 of 19 off Johan with a 1.287 OPS and .737 SLG.

That's like 2002 Barry Bonds

without getting into the merit of comparing reed johnson to barry bonds...



Fuku (kinda)

That's 1/2 the starting squad right there.

okay, 37.5% are sitting...

Soto, Ramirez, Theriot would be in there if this was the playoffs. Then it would be a matter of either Cedeno at 2b, DeRosa in RF or DeRosa at 2B, Fukudome in right.

Soto sitting isn't a surprise...Theriot has been struggling lately until yesterday, so resting him seems fine. Ramirez however, I would think would want to take some hacks against Santana.

I wonder if part of this is Lou doesn't want to give a psychological edge to the Mets. If Santana goes out and dominates the Cubs playoff starters, the media and press could start talking about how the Cubs could be easily upset by Santana and the Mets in the playoffs. Doubt it, but you never know.

a solid theory..

I'm sure Soriano, Lee and DeRosa get to sit tomorrow as well.

Obligatory: This lineup sucks.

At this point I care about our team being well rested and ready for the playoffs, getting 100 wins and finishing with a better record than the Angels. Also that nobody gets hurt. Did I miss anything?

I almost forgot--The White Sox knocked out of 1st and don't make the playoffs. I care about that too.

I agree that priority #1 needs to be resting everyone, not getting hurt, while still giving everyone enough time to avoid rust. I don't think the Cubs should bother getting wrapped up in what they can do to confound other teams...

I think one interesting advantage the Cubs have is that they play both of the top wild card contenders in these "Meaningless games".

Meaning, as long as they rest players equally against both the Mets and the Brewers, those teams should have nothing to complain about.

Why start K-Fuk tonight? I doubt facing Johan will be a confidence builder.

more like a punishment. like doing laps or pushups.

Wasn't aware that the cruel and unusual punishment thing doesn't apply to foreigners?

Actually, according to the Carolene Products case, footnote 4, all Constitutional rights (unless explicitly stated otherwise) apply to US citizens as well as non-citizens, be they legal or illegal. Also, see Miranda rights. Fukudome is entitled.

Still was nice to see him start out 2-2 against Johan.

Johann Santana isn't that good is he?

How underrated is Sean Marshall?

This guy should be in the rotation next year. I think you'll see Dempster walk for the highest bidder.

Who says your namesake won't be the highest bidder?

I know my namesake doesnt look good right now, but i'll stick to it. I have many issues with Hendry.

It depends what Dempster does in Post Season, but i wouldnt give Dempster more than 3 years, given his age and contract year motivation to get in shape.

I'm pretty sure his current contract started in 2006.

He's been awesome this year, so maybe he'll stick with it going forward.

I do not like seeing Marshall taken out after only 71 pitches.

The more I think about that the more irritated I get. He had given up only 2 runs through 5 innings on 71 pitches. Let him go for an inning or two more, then put Hart and Wells in. Let them see 3 pitchers that won't factor much in the playoff roster. Instead the Bullpen allowed them to take the lead.


fwiw, I thought Marshall looked pretty gassed on his last few hitters. He missed badly on Castillo a few times and left a cookie for Wright that was luckily only hit for a single.

Exactly. He's not stretched out to go 100 pitches. I imagine they kept him on an 80 or so pitch count, which is pretty standard for a spot starter coming out of long relief.

well yeah, I think i said and showed that DeRosa was the only other one really worth batting 4th
if Lou tries to rest ARam tomorrow night, he can bat Z 4th.

I *heart* Guillermo Mota

5-4 PIT bottom 8


Don't we want Milwaukee to win?

I dunno...I'm cheering for the Mets for the WC, personally. I'm comfortable with Cubs v. Mets in the NLDS, and would like to see the Brewers not make the playoffs. I also have a Mets fan friend it would be fun to watch the NLDS with.

Well, Fielder walk-off, never mind!

Sure... we may want to the Mets to win the wild card, but we don't want them to clinch it until at least this weekend, preferably Sunday. Or, even better, Monday.

so just how many games in row has
ronnie cedeno started wow he should
be finding his stroke well maybe not.

It's possible that Cedeno is being made to audition for a playoff-roster spot this week. Either that, or he is just getting some much-needed at bats.

Again, I don't really see the need for a backup shortstop in the playoffs since the starter isn't going to rest. If Theriot is injured, Cedeno can be activated for the next game. If it's just a couple of innings, DeRosa and Fontenot have played a little short.

Not a big Ronny fan this week, I'd like to see him yield to Hoffpauir or Pie. Of course, then you've got nobody to PH right-handed, but that was the problem with only bringing up McGehee. I don't particularly want to see Cedeno or McGehee come to the plate in the late innings of a close game with the season on the line.

I don't particularly want to see Cedeno or McGehee come to the plate in the late innings of a close game with the season on the line.

But you would want Pie?

Not much difference, although lately I'm bullish on Pie and bearish on Cedeno.

Good luck to the Cubs, though, with Cedeno getting key late-inning at bats in the playoffs. All the other team has to do is put in a lefty reliever and they know Cedeno will go to the bat rack.

Unless Lou uses Zambrano instead!

I had a hard time giving a shit what happened tonight.

is a terrific MINOR LEAGUER.

For the tenth time I've said this - he needs a shrink to help him get to the next level.


You guys seen The Onion's analysis of Zambrano?

This is an interesting article on ESPN about the Yankees. But towards the bottom there is a table ranking all of the teams by how well they drafted from 1997-2005 - showing total MLB innings pitched and games played. Cubs rank pretty well in both categories:

My memory is as long as Santo's and I don't have a casual attitude toward the Mets. Historically, they think they own the Cubs.

I really hope the Cubs win the Zambrano and Harden games. It's easier to stamp the Mets out this week than it will be next week. Why wait?

I'm 24 hours late, but since nobody else mentioned it on this site ...

... This Day in Cubs Misery
Sept. 23, 1908

Merkle's Boner. Comcast Sportsnet ran a great feature on Merkle, and "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" also did a good job. Olbermann basically reran his piece that he did when he worked for CNN 25 years ago (upon occasion of the 75th anniversary).

Both pieces were sympathetic towards Merkle, saying that baserunners typically left the basepaths upon occasion of game-winning walkoff hits in order to avoid fans streaming on to the field that intended on mobbing them. Umpires never called them on it.

This was a heck of smart play by Johnny Evers, and I bet he had thought about it in advance (though maybe not mugging the fan for the ball).

Olbermann referred to it as the most controversial play in sports history.

... and ...
Sept. 23, 1998

Brant Brown's dropped fly ball. Nuff said.



I was listening to Pat & Ron live when that happened. I really honestly thought Ron was dying on the air. Not good times.

Ron's scream was the only thing that kept me from driving off the road.

I just had to laugh.

thanks. i was hoping someone would link it so i wouldn't have to search

Recent comments

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  • deno ended the season well even though ajax heavily cut into a lot of his chances to play. it's either him or ajax. i'm a bit partial to deno, but least ajax isn't hitting 2nd.

  • Agreed. And, with Hendricks on the mound, Cubs will probably need to score some runs to win -- why not start Soler for his bat and bring in Ajax for defense later?

    NEVER MIND....just re-read the lineup.

  • If the Cubs have the lead in the 8th, who pitches? Rodney? Travis? Yikes.

  • The Cubs had some good runs and nice winning streaks that propelled them to the playoffs. Austin Jackson wasn't part of that. I don't quite understand what it is about Jackson that they are so enamored with.

  • I think the strike zone was very inconsistent, but it's hard to blame the loss on the ump. They had chances and mistake pitches and just couldn't cash in. Lackey ran the ball inside and outside very effectively.

  • Correct. Castro 5th, AJax 6th; I'll edit my lineup post to fix this.

  • Lineup: Fowler, Soler, KB, Rizzo, Castro, AJax, Montero, Hendricks, Russell

  • if he put ajax 1st/2nd in the f'n playoffs he deserves to lose his nearly sure-thing MOY award to terry collins.

  • I believe Castro batting fifth, Ajax (LF) sixth

  • Maddon did not listen to me yesterday re Strop, or EricS on Schwarbs today.

    Wtf is up w/that?!

  • Crunch got his wish - Ajax not hitting 1-2 in the lineup ...

  • I know he's struggles against lefties but Schwarber seems zoned in - hope he starts tonight.

  • Awesome stuff, Phil.

  • listening on ESPN 1000, caller says Bill Welke will be the home plate ump today. Supposedly his reputation is for having an even bigger strike zone than last night's Phil Cuzzi. Some of the issues with bad umpiring come from an inconsistent strike zone. Hoping at least for consistency. Last night's called strike on David Ross was outright embarrassing for Cuzzi.

    That might work out in favor of Kyle Hendricks, who benefits much from a large strike zone.

  • it's kind of mesmerizing to watch
    should Theo add some Ted Abernathy videos for minor league pitching coordinator's use?

    sadly, Ted passed away in 2004 from complications of Alzheimers. I always loved the Cub bullpen trio of Phil Regan, Ted Abernathy and Hank Aguirre. As a kid, I even worked on both Phil Regan (very quirky delivery) and Ted Abernathy (extreme submarine) imitations when throwing a rubber ball against a wall. It wasn't a good imitation unless I could scrape my knuckles off the ground. I'll always have a soft spot in my heart for submariners.

  • HAGSAG: Chris Pieters was sent to instructs to develop his hitting, bunting, and outfield play (he is already a decent first-baseman).  

    Pieters is tall and rangy , a "long-strider" in the same mold as Trey Martin and Rashad Crawford. He is a very patient hitter (unusual for a hitter with his lack of experience) and has an outstanding (almost uncanny) eye at the plate, and he is a fast runner with unusually good baserunning instincts, and he is a good basestealer, too.