Game 26 Thread / Brewers @ Cubs (1 of 3)
|SP||Ben Sheets||SP||Jason Marquis|
|3-0, 0.96, 24 K, 4 BB||1-0, 3.47, 15 K, 9 BB|
|2B||Rickie Weeks||LF||Reed Johnson|
|CF||Mike Cameron||SS||Ryan Theriot|
|LF||Ryan Braun||1B||Derrek Lee|
|1B||*Prince Fielder||3B||Aramis Ramirez|
|RF||Corey Hart||RF||*Kosuke Fukudome|
|3B||Bill Hall||2B||Mark DeRosa|
|SS||JJ Hardy||C||Geovany Soto|
|P||Ben Sheets||CF||*Felix Pie|
|C||Jason Kendall||P||*Jason Marquis|
No, you're not imagining things--this is the Brewers' second visit to Wrigley Field in the season's first month while the Cubs have yet to visit Milwaukee and won't do so until after the All-Star break.
While the Cubs (16-9) were losing two of three on the road to the Nationals and scoring 10 runs this past weekend, the Brewers (14-11) were dropping two of three at home to the Marlins and scoring six runs. The Brewers, who led the NL in batting with RISP (.303) going into the series, went just 1-for-26 against the Marlins in those same situations.
The Milwaukees expect a boost tonight (no drug reference intended) from centerfielder Mike Cameron, who will be making his '08 debut after serving a 25-game suspension for taking a banned amphetamine. Cameron, you may recall, played for Lou Piniella with the Mariners from 2000 through 2002, and the two were involved in the M's Divisional Series sweep over the White Sox in 2000, in which this semi-famous play occurred:
Cameron was on first base, and Piniella (came out of the dugout and) went to the bag to talk to him.
White Sox closer Keith Foulke seemed to get rattled, and Edgar Martinez
hit a go-ahead homer to lead the Mariners to a three-game sweep.
Piniella later said he told Cameron to buy Cisco stock.
Sheets, meanwhile, is making his first appearance in 11 days, since departing a start against the Reds mid-game because of "tightness in his right triceps muscle." Big Ben leads NL pitchers with a ridiculous 0.64 WHIP and a batting average against of .146. Back on Opening Day, Sheets held the Cubs scoreless over 6 1/3 IP, allowing but two hits.
He also needs just 10 strikeouts to pass Teddy Higuera and become the Brewers' all-time strikeout leader, which should sure make for some compelling television.
In 48 career at-bats against the Milwaukee ace, Derrek Lee has 5 HR and a .681 slugging percentage, which makes a nice counter-balance to Aramis Ramirez's .192 batting average and 1 career HR in 58 at-bats against Sheets.
Jason Marquis is coming off his second Quality Start in a row, a 7-inning ND last Thursday at Colorado (8 hits, 2 ER, 2 BB).
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Phil, your knowledge of the Cubs Minor League system is unbelievable.
This kid would be a key piece in a trade for a pitcher, imo.
LHSP Jose Paulino has electric stuff (91-94 MPH fastball with sinking action and a mid-80's slider), but he also has trouble commanding it.
RHP Jose Albertos (2015 IFA - Mexico - $1.5M bonus) just turned 17 in November, and his fastball already sits at 95-96. He also throws a curve and a change-up, and is fairly advanced for a kid his age.
I think I can probably tell you which pitchers and players at EXST are in contention for roster slots at Eugene and which are in contention for slots with the AZL Cubs - AS THINGS STAND RIGHT NOW - (listed alphabetically):
* bats or throws left
# bats both
Paniagua displayed plus-HR power in Cactus League Minor League Spring Training games in March, and that got him a slot on the South Bend Opening Day roster. But he was sent to EXST after only six MWL games.
More on the Cub Way.
Send Soler down!
Awesome thanks AZ
Great report, Phil! This organization has so many hitters to be excited about.
Ben Zobrist is very enjoyable to watch!!!!!!
Any scuttlebutt on where Neil Ramirez gets traded?
He seems better than some of the relievers on competitive teams. He ought to bring more than the waiver fee.
My guess? Toronto.