Game 159 Thread / Cubs @ Brewers (1 of 3)
|SP||Ryan Dempster||SP||Jeff Suppan|
|17-6, 2.99, 183 K, 75 BB, 201.2 IP||10-10, 5.06, 85 K, 66 BB, 172.2 IP|
|LF||Alfonso Soriano||CF||Mike Cameron|
|2B||*Mike Fontenot||2B||*Ray Durham|
|1B||Derrek Lee||LF||Ryan Braun|
|3B||Aramis Ramirez||1B||*Prince Fielder|
|RF||*Micah Hoffpauir||SS||J.J. Hardy|
|C||Geovany Soto||RF||Corey Hart|
|CF||*Jim Edmonds||3B||*Craig Counsell|
|SS||Ryan Theriot||C||Jason Kendall|
|P||Ryan Dempster||P||Jeff Suppan|
The Cubs continue their Spoiler Tour 2008 and will do their best to knock out their division rivals. The only thing that probably really matters for the Cubs is that the races are still undecided on Sunday as the Phils, Brewers and Mets have their aces scheduled. Meaning if they have to use them, they won't be able to go again until Game 2 at the earliest and possibly not until Game 3 of the NLDS. Of course if the Brewers end up winning the wild card, none of that will matter to the Cubs either as they'll see the Dodgers and Derek Lowe in Game 1.
As for personal goals, Dempster goes for win number 18 and will try to keep his ERA under three for the season and Geovany Soto is looking to match or pass up Billy Williams Cubs rookie record of 25 home runs - Soto is at 23.
Theo inks five year extension
PC tonite at PNC
Not as a major factor, but could be a tie-breaker. But, yeah, on performance and experience, it's Coghlan.
Arrieta’s 2.85 ERA would be good enough to lead 26 other teams. He's 3rd on #Cubs behind Hendricks (1.99) and Lester (2.28)
Meanwhile on the SouthSide
For sure! Russell and Baez are the first infielders in a while to make me think of star defensive players in football or basketball--it's almost like they force turnovers, and they definitely play the field with a degree of athletic aggression I'd expect from a linebacker.
[Edit: Was meant to be a response to JB above.]
tebow hit a HR in the 1st pitch he sees in instructs..lulz.
I don't think his issue(s) will have anything to do with it. He hasn't hit since he's been back. Coghlan has the hot hand.
I'm not a denier but definitely a skeptic on Strop and Grimm, who struggle with fastball control. Strop doesn't go near the ninth inning, and note how Grimm couldn't close the deal even with a 5-run lead. So Felix Pena comes in and gets the 3-pitch game-ending strikeout like it was nothing.
And how about Almora missing that very catchable ball? That was unexpected after all the hype about his glove.
When Trea Turner misses balls like that--which he does--I draw conclusions from it. It seems to be the one chink in his armor. But I'll give Almora another chance.
Assuming Soler is good to go, I think it comes down to 3 of the following 4: Coghlan, TLS, Sczcur, Almora. Of the 4, TLS seems to be the hardest to justify, particularly given his behavioral issues.
I'm wondering if both Coghlan and LaStella make it. With Javy being able to play all the infield spots and Joe maybe wanting late-inning D when Soler plays (assuming he plays), hence either Szczur or Almora, I think LaStella might be the odd guy out.
Hendricks needs the win, anyway, plus a couple more.
My hunch is that Hendricks wins the Cy Young . . . for Lester. That is, without Hendricks tipping the scale toward the Cubs, Scherzer tops Lester.
Old Cub fans remember when Ken Hubbs died at 22 in the crash of a small plane he was piloting in a storm in Utah in 1964. But Hubbs was not an elite power pitcher like Score and Fernandez. Score lived a long time after the accident but it was (effectively) career-ending.
HAGSAG: Since I've only seen them throw in one game and in one "live" BP session, all I can do is provide initial first impressions.
Brailyn Marquez is listed at 6'4 but is probably more like 6'5 or 6'6. I would describe him as a younger version of Bryan Hudson, throwing a ton of ground balls but not getting a lot of swings & misses (yet). Because of his size he could eventually grow into more velocity, but right now he's mostly a pitch-to-contact guy. He generally throws strikes.
Phil, do Marquez and Ocampo look like prospects?
It helps when your defense has declared war against the H in WHIP.
Lackey finishes with a 3.35 ERA. Currently good for 13th in the NL. Not bad for a guy signed to be a #3 starter in a 15-team league.
He is also 6th in WHIP. Pretty amazing: Cubs have the #2, #3, #5 and #6 starters in WHIP.