Game 31 Thread - Maholm vs. Hudson

Soriano sits because of a sore knee and an OPS in the .500's.

Braves Cubs
*Bourn, CF
*DeJesus, RF
Prado, LF
*Campana, CF
*Freeman, 1B
Castro, SS
Uggla, 2B *LaHair, 1B
#C. Jones, 3B *Stewart, 3B
*Heyward, RF Soto, C
Ross, C
*Cardenas, LF
Wilson, SS
Barney, 2B
Hudson, P
*Maholm, P


As I mentioned in the last thread, I think theocorp is handling this really well. He was never much of a hitter, in my mind, but Soriano does seem like a class guy, very nice and all.

Letting him go through "injury", which I am assuming is happening, is good stuff.

Sveum is also starting to impress me. I think he might actually mean it when he says results count. It is tough to stay on that philosophy when about 5 of your starters are Triple AAA caliber. But he is doing stuff I'd expect some of you guys to do.

Okay, one more thing. The Cubs are actually looking like a good team. They may suck on many levels, but coaching is huge - in my opinion - and they are a team that I am now trying to watch, rather than avoid.

We have a triple A team competing with the rest of the league. May not last, but it may.

Effing pollyanna...

Feel free to comment.

Watch and learn.


hey look, an out on the basepaths

LaHair due up next.

*bangs head on the desk* Wonder how many runs vs outs Castro's aggressive base running has given us.

So what happened there? Gameday just said Castro out at home.

slicer down right field line, Heyward dove and ball landed right on line and bounced into right field.

Castro certainly didn't leave the box at full speed seeing if it was fair and then thrown out at home. Heyward bounced the throw to Uggla and Uggla threw it up the third base line by about 5 feet and he was still out relatively easily.

Kinzer says he won't talk long-term extension for Castro during season.

Marshall trying to choke away a lead again.

leadoff HR to Braun.

2-1 Reds, 1 out after striking out Ramirez.

and lifted after getting 2 outs, but 2 singles.

Ondrusek gets the final out and Reds win 2-1. Cueto/Greinke with 8 shutout innings each. Axford strikes out the first 2 hitters in the 9th, has 2 strikes on Stubbs and then gives up a single, double to Votto that scores Stubbs and a single to Phillips that scored Votto.

Careen win #1500 for Dusty, 20th All-time

presuming around 80 wins the next 2 years, should move up to #16 by end of next season.

Malholm down to a 1.08 WHIP btw. He's been giving up too many HRs but overall he's been pitching better than his ERA. This is in opposition to James Russel who with a 1.32 WHIP is just begging for an ERA spike soon.

fun fact: in an NL only roto league I dumped Maholm after the first week, but kept Volstad.

I am awesome.

Not as awesome as me. I picked up LaHair during an off-season waivers period, then didn't hang on to him as a keeper prior to the draft.


but you still have danks in your other league right?

nah, I dumped Danks before his start Tuesday when he finally pitched well, although he didn't get the win.

Starting pitching in our mixed league isn't particularly hard to find though.

You should have dropped them both? :)

lahero strikes again...rbi single hit into the hole of the shift.

and LaHair cashes in on the opportunity he didn't get with Castro thrown out, 2-out RBI single.

LaHair, he of the "I can hit everything they throw at me" Lahair?

The baseball knowledge is unique.

Stewart with a half-ass defensive play giving up a 2-out double.

followed by a BB.

Dolis up in the pen.

gets Uggla to pop out to RF.

Be up to Dolis to finish it.

is there a reason why s.maine is in AAA being their best reliever rather than in the bigs being the cubs best reliever? he's only getting out both lefties and righties...with control...

also, do lendy castillo and mike bowden exist?

Wood will probably go on DL after hurting his arm throwing his glove.

that was boring, yet good...cubs win.

1-2-3 inning for Dolis against Jones, Heyward and McCann.

Cubs take another series from a division leader.

The only question left is whether this Cubs team is the best team in 2012, or best team ever?

Things certainly have changed for the better haven't they.

best-est Cubs team ever?

Larry's last game at Wrigley

they gave him one of the "standings flags" for ATL from the outfield flag section. class.

Cubs are 8-7 vs. Nationals, Cardinals, Dodgers and Braves

5-11 vs. Marlins, Brewers, Reds and Phillies

Interesting stat, but a lot of that has to do with timing. This team started bad.

Last time Cubs won a game 1-0: Aug. 3, 2011, @ PIT (W Garza, S Marmol).

This team is a Top-60 reliever away from being a .500 club. Considering what we thought we had, and also who's contributing nothing, that's saying a lot.

This team definitely has issues. Castro and LaHair will realistically both most likely see their stats drop a bit, as will Campana and Dempster. Yet on the other hand, I can also see Soto, Soriano and Stewart batting wise and Malholm and Volstad pitching wise seeing #s get better. We got a team right now pretty out of wack with player career #s both positive and negative, so will be interesting to see which way it goes.

Overall though if Rizzo shows an ability to cut down on strike outs and Castro learns to run the bases better it will be a pretty epic middle of the lineup we have with some excellent top of the rotation pitching.

Castro and LaHair are both stars. The rest I just am waiting for the fall. But Sveum is pretty good to be able to get this crew to be competitive. His not your mother's Qball.

Fredi Gonzalez has some Qball in him ...
“Huddy was outstanding. So much that if he would have come out of the seventh inning with no runs, I was thinking about letting him hit in the eighth, because he was that dominant.” ... “We swung the bats well. Even though we didn’t score any runs today, I can’t complain about our offense. They did a nice job defending us… It seems like we should have won two out of three, especially with Huddy’s performance today.”

On yesterday's win: “Good team effort. Danny battled to get that two-run single and get us over the top.” ... “Freeman’s going to go home 0-for-3, 0-for-4, and he hit three balls right on the nose. You can’t do anything about that. I thought we all had good at-bats against him. He just kept us off-balance. The old guy – I’m calling Dempster the old guy – he reached back one time and punched out Bourney with 93 [mph]. I think he pitched the whole night at about 88, 89.”

still a terrible offense and the pitching will only get worse.

Except imo Malhom and Volstad will both get better, as will Wood and Marmol. That doesn't mean they are great pitchers (though I think Malhom has actually been pitching well) but that thing Ryno was talking about with reverting to the mean applies here. They are pitching much worse than career #s and that's just as likely to revert back to a better mean as the good will be to revert back to a worse mean.

/edit not to mention take a look at the career #s of Soto, Soriano and Ian Stewart. Both are way underperforming those #s. If we're going to make the claim our good starting pitching will come back down a bit (which is a realistic point) you also need to accept that way underperforming players will most likely move back to their career mean unless you have nagging injuries. Soriano maybe might see an age drop off, but I just don't see it being this drastic. None of those players most likely will ever be part of a future team, but if we can see an uptick in performance from them and our back 2 pitchers, it will help mask a drop off in performance for our overperforming players.

You think Maholm will get better? He better start clearing off space on a shelf for his Cy Young award.

He's overall pitching well and has a 1.080 WHIP but is giving up too many HRs and I do think he can bring that ERA down a bit. I don't think he's a star or anything but he seems to be a pretty good #4th pitcher.

the new comments reminded me that I forgot to respond.

I believe all the players that may regress upwards will be tempered by all the players that will regress downwards. The team isn't winning these games easily and I don't think they have the pitching talent to keep winning 1-run games at anymore than a .500 clip.

I picked them to win 75 games and I'd be thrilled if they got there.

Which is why I would like to see them make a 4-5 yr commitment to Garza, land a proven #2/#3 starter in the FA market (e.g. Hamels), and hope this Samardzija is the real deal. Having those three plus a Maholm is a good starting point. Would also like to see the obvious trade deadline dumps (Soto, Dempster, Baker) bring back some effective bullpen help for 2012-2013.

The offense (right now) is obviously going to be built around Castro, Rizzo, BJax, Castillo/Clevenger, and LaHair (for as long he continues to hit). Not sure what Theo's plan is for the offense (FA, trades, or wait for the farm system).

Cubs at Brewers: Battling to get OUT of last place...

This team definitely has issues.

Thank you Capt. Obvious :)

Campana is a bunting hit machine. There is no stopping him!

Last night the Braves corners were pulled in guarding against his bunting "magic." The little dude "crushed" a singe to left!

He actually does fuck up pitchers a bit. Its just, he has to have enough OBP accumen to make it worthwhile.

Overall, I am impressed with our starting pitching. I am unimpressed with the two costly bullpen veterans, who have cost the team 5 wins or more.

This team is looking like the 2010 Padres East! (except no "good" Heath Bell, or A. Gonzo)

It would be a hoot if the team can start sniffing .500 again.

did today's game come with a crack cocaine and antidepressant smoothie or something?

there's a bit of glow coming off this game for some reason. 13 wins, 5 away from .500...still crap hitting...still iffy pen. stewart's recent (odd) misplays aside the D is a bit tighter lately.

Just "boring, but good Cubs win."

Nothing more...

here and twitter are blowing up with hope. it's just an odd-ish coincidence after a pretty quick/uneventful game. not trying to poop in anyone's sandbox.

not trying to poop in anyone's sandbox.

Dude, that is gross. Stop doing that!

I am liking the the starting pitching, actually. At least lately. Except for the "Big Funk" Volsted.

I'd like to see them sign Garza. We are going to have to wait until July to find out if its gonna happen.

fun fact: Matt Bush was driving Brandon Guyer's truck when he crashed under the influence and Guyer is also being sued for $5M.

Guyer called up to replace Keppinger briefly as he was put on the restricted list for a personal matter.

Ouch. On the other hand, why would you let Matt Bush borrow your truck?

Colvin playing 1b for rockies at the moment.

Recent comments

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  • BLOCK: Of course any advantage is an advantage. An MLB, NBA, or NHL team getting the extra game at home in a seven game series is an advantage, I just don't think it is enough of an advantage for winning a division and/or having the best record in a conference or league over the course of an 82-game season (NBA and NHL) or 162 game series (MLB).

  • TEX takes the opening game from TOR (@TOR) 5-3.

    TOR lost bautista + donaldson in-game due to injuries...TEX lost beltre...dunno if any will be lingering issues leading to missed games.

  • Ride the Kid Magic! Schwarber hadn't homered in a long time before last night.

  • Greg Maddux was 8-18 in his rookie season. Kyle has the 8 wins down pat.

    Think Baby Maddux.

    Prof. Harold Hill's THINK system at work.

    Kyle is on the far left.

  • 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.