Cubs Recap for April 23, 2012
9th inning dramatics at Wrigley and the Cubs have won 2 of 3. You probably don't want to go any farther back than that though.
@Cubs 3 - Cardinals 2; That certainly was an unexpected win, but let's first take a look at the expected. Garza gives up just 2 ER over 7 innings against a slightly depleted Cardinals lineup (no Berkman or John Jay). Garcia of course answers against a depleted Cubs lineup (no injuries, just by their very nature). Now to the surprises, Garza made a decent play on defense, laid down a sacrifice bunt and the team did not commit any errors. There were some adventures on the basepath, Castro getting picked off by Garcia and then 8th inning weirdness with Campana that worked out for the Cubs. Campana singled with 1 out and representing the tying run in the 8th. I missed the DeJesus at-bat unfortunately, so I don't know if he attempted to run off the lefty Garcia. But Matheny brought in the righty Boggs to face Barney and the Cardinals knew Campana would be running. He did on a 1-2 count and they called the successful pitchout and Molina delivered a strike, but Greene couldn't handle the throw and Campana ended up with the bag and then for good measure took third as well. It was all for naught in that inning, but fun to watch. To the 9th, Motte made quick of Soriano's slowing bat with 98mph heat. LaHair though battled to the tune of 12 pitches, fouling off all kinds of crazy pitches before working a walk. Soto followed with a walk of his own and Sveum went with Clevenger as the pinch-hitter for Dolis. He managed to advance the runners and now with 2 outs and runners on 2nd/3rd, Sveum lets Mather hit with Stewart on the bench against the righty Motte. Not the call I would have made, but Mather came through with the winning hit. I have no idea if Motte used up all his mojo up on LaHair's at-bat, but things certainly turned with that epic at-bat. Winning is fun.
Memphis 6 - @Iowa 2; Iowa played earlier in the day and you can see the recap in the game thread below, so no reason to repeat myself.
@Tennessee 5 - Chattanooga 4 (12 innings); This is an interesting one. Jonathan Mota started in left field, taking over for Ty Wright whom was promoted to Triple A when Campana was called up to the majors. Mota homered and then got credit for the win with a scoreless 12th inning. Mota for his minor league career entering tonight has played the following positions: 300 @SS, 130 @3B, 114 @2B, 15 @RF, 12 @ CF and 4.2 innings as a pitcher since 2008, so it wasn't completely new to him. Elliot Soto also had a multi-hit game with a double and a triple and Watkins had 2 RBI's. Dallas Beeler started and went 5.2 IP/4 ER/8 H/2 BB/ 3 K/1 HR. Justin Bour had the game-winning hit, singling in Nate Samson.
Lakeland 7 - @Daytona 2; A tough draw for Daytona as they got highly touted Jacob Turner for some reason (I presume some sort of rehab assignment as it was his first appearance of the year). Turner went 4 innings, giving up 0 hits, 2 BB's and 0 K's. Zach Cates got the start for Daytona and gave up 3 ER in 4 IP on 6 H/1 K/ 0 BB. Larry Suarez got roughed up for 3 ER in 2 innings of work to put the game out of reach. Richard Jones and John Andreoli were the only hitters to reach base multiple times.
Lansing 7 - @Peoria 3; Jose Rosario roughed up again for 4 ER in 5 innings against 9 H/2 BB/2 K. Offensively, DeVoss and Darvill were the only hitters to reach base more than once and Easterling had the only extra-base hit - a triple.
I am remarkably calm about today's game. Not that I am expecting to win, but that I have no expectations at all either way.
If the Cubs game goes to 14 innings, I will not be calm.
TEX/TOR in the 14th inning, btw...fun stuff.
Yay! KB at 3B!
Molina in the Cards lineup.
Fowler (CF), Schwarber (RF!), Bryant (3B), Rizzo (1B), Castro (2B), Coughlan (LF), Russell (SS), Ross (C), Lester (P)
If the baseball gods would guarantee that result, I'd take it :-).
I wonder if it is about numbers specifically against the Mets. But, it could also be because Kershaw can go 9 innings everytime, while Grienke very rarely makes it through the game. They don't want to expose their weak bullpen.
I have trouble getting past the extraordinary 1.66 ERA, but I don't know what the heck will happen with the Cy Young vote this year.
So Kershaw is opening the series for the Dodgers. How, then, does Greinke get the Cy Young? Not even the best pitcher on his team!
You have angered the baseball gods. Now Lester will lose and Hendricks will win.
Cubs go home 1-1, with Arrieta starting game 3, I like our chances in this series. Tomorrow's pitching matchup is lousy on paper, so today is obviously crucial.
Will be fun to watch. My two keys are scoring early, and keeping Lester's pitch count below 15 per inning.
Hopefully Der Kaiser won't be doing this until December
So, yes, I have been quoting your, "mediocre pitcher" label all year in jest - good or bad.
He has been pretty filthy against the Cards, and this is the game they need to "steal".
I am hoping against hope that Pedro Strop only sees the mound if the Cubs are up 8 in a game.
I've been pretty harsh with Lester here at various times but that's how it is when you pull in that kind of money, and besides, it's not like he reads my posts or would care what I have to say if he did read them for some reason. If I was him, the first thing out of my mouth would be, what level have you played this game at, pal?
Anyway, he's really looked good lately, and overall his body of work turned out pretty good, too. I'm glad his worst struggles were in April. This is such an easy team to like that I even like the overpaid free agent.
Gordo's lede today:
ST. LOUIS – Whether it’s a year early or right on time, Jon Lester’s $155 million moment arrives just after 5:45 p.m. Friday.
*checks pulse again*
Who are you? Andy Rooney?