Game 50 Thread / Cubs @ Pirates (3 of 3)
|SP||*Ted Lilly||SP||*Paul Maholm|
|5-4, 5.14, 56 K, 19 BB, 56 IP||2-5, 5.03, 38 K, 20 BB, 53.2 IP|
|LF||Alfonso Soriano||2B||Freddy Sanchez|
|SS||Ryan Theriot||SS||Luis Rivas|
|1B||Derrek Lee||CF||*Nate McLouth|
|3B||Aramis Ramirez||LF||Jason Bay|
|CF||Reed Johnson||RF||Xavier Nady|
|RF||*Kosuke Fukudome||1B||*Adam LaRoche|
|2B||Mark DeRosa||3B||Jose Bautista|
|C||Henry Blanco||C||Ronny Paulino|
|P||*Ted Lilly||P||*Paul Maholm|
The residue from last night's 14-inning loss:
- The Cubs need to win today to take the series and finish with a .500 road trip
- After pitching 8 innings last night, the bullpen is all beat to hell, with a Memorial Day home game on tap tomorrow
- The Wood-to-setup-man and Marmol-to-closer discussion can begin anew
- Alfonso Soriano got to play a 4-hour and 21-minute game on that calf muscle which isn't "injured" but sure looks like it when Soriano runs
- Any Cub fan who stayed up until the bitter end will be haunted the sight of Henry Blanco playing first base
Regarding today's lineup, Soto, who caught all 14 innings Saturday night, gets the day off, with Johnson moving all the way up to fifth in the order and Henry Blanco filling the 8th spot.
Rich Hill appeared on WSCR Radio Sunday morning after throwing a simulated game in Iowa. He attributed his recent back troubles to "an overdeveloped muscle," the result of years and years of pitching, and he said the back pain which caused him to leave his last start for the I-Cubs had been troubling him, to a lesser degree, going back to Spring Training.
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "they never play good against the good teams", or some other shit.
Addy really has trouble breaking through .250 BA -- after his hot streak got him to .251, he has gone 1-for-17.
Thank goodness for Jansen's 2 WP on Friday -- otherwise this would have been a sweep.
There seems to be a direct correlation with overconfidence in the Cubs offense against mediocre/young pitchers and really poor offense against mediocre/young pitchers. So, let's fear the Pirate pitchers!
Rizzo due for a power surge -- one HR in August so far. He truly does hit them in bunches.
Sometimes I'm not as supportive of Cahill as maybe I should be. There, I said it.
Rough 8th inning all around -- HBP, Cahill error, Javy's poor decision.
Oh well - given that the Cubs didn't look like they were going to score, it's better to lose in 9 innings, save the bullpen and get changed for the PJ trip home.
Baez still learning
heyward with his 3rd multi-hit game since the all-star break (all in august)...2nd in the past 3 games during his 7 game hitting streak.
he's gone from flirting with a sub-.300 ob% to nearing .310 ob% in 3 games (1 game was just a 1 for 1 pinch hit appearance). all 5 hits in the past 3 games have come in a row...neat.
stewart with 7Ks through 3ip...of course.
that 10-13 mph difference in his fastball/change is working today...and they're swinging at his crappy slider.
brock stewart...steven brault...fun times for the cubs hitters vs allegedly competitive teams...maybe.
Maddon would have started three lefties against the Dodgers, Montgomery, Zastryzny and Lester, except that he doesn't have the juice to do that. No manager does. Maddon has a boss, Epstein (and probably Hoyer, too), who gave him a starting rotation of five guys including Hammel. Maddon was asked yesterday about the starting group for next year and basically said, Not my call, that's why I drive away in my RV in the summer and occasionally check in, etc.
video of Maddon.
always nice that he actually tries to honestly answer questions. Does mention that he wanted to give Zastr? a chance in a meaningful spot rather than a mop-up role.
#Cubs Maddon: "I'm not going to make up an excuse for why I did what I did. It has nothing to do with lack of confidence" ... "It was the right thing to do today based on what I saw, what their lineup looked like and Rob Z.'s availability." #Cubs
Hammel not particularly understanding of getting pulled out...as he should. Be curious what Maddon had to say. All I can think of is is keeping arms fresh and maybe wanting to see if Zastr? is worth considering for the playoffs and how he'd do against the Dodgers.
Heyward, Russell, Baez, Bryant, Ross in particular...although Bryant's a bit hard to judge with all the positions.
Fowler and Rizzo in the top half of the NL for their positions as well (per fangraphs)...Zobrist right at the halfway cutoff for 2b in the NL.
I'm sure some luck is involved too, but the Cubs and Maddon knew what they were doing.