Pretty cool game last night.
Johan Santana vs Travis Wood in New York with the Mets in 2nd behind Washington in the East and the Cubs sort of a related development.
But whatever, Reed Johnson led off with a homer, got 4 hits and scored 3 times.
Jeff Baker hit one out, Alfonso Soriano went 2 for 4 and knocked one in (he's now 26 RBIs from 1000).
Geovany Soto got 2 hits to raise his average to .175!
But the star of last night's game was young stud pup Anthony Rizzo.
4 for 5 including a 3 run homer in the 5th off Santana and breaking the Mets' back.
Cubs up 8-4 and man are things ever comfy here in the 9th.
But then in comes Carlos Marmol.
Who throws for like another hour.
He gave up a couple hits including a homer, walks 3 in a row, and 3 runs.
When David Wright came up as the tying run I was...well I was with some friends sitting at the bar of a nice Italian place called Mia Figlia over on Devon.
Behind me is a roomful of respectable people - the kind who make an effort to dress nicely even though it's one hundred and three degrees outside.
They're all enjoying their excellent Italian meals and I thought man, if Carlos Marmol makes me hurl right now I'll ruin everyone's dinner.
He walks Wright, which was better than the homer I thought was about to happen, and it was then that I heard a familiar voice.
"Carlos Marmol is my favorite pitcher!" said Nausea.
It's never good to hear from that guy.
Finally, by the grace of the Baseball Gods some Met hit an easy liner to Marmol who tosses to first for a DP that ends the game.
Young Travis Wood gets to keep his W, and we all go home happy.
Saturday Funnies: Carlos Marmol is Nausea's favorite pitcher.
Pretty cool game last night.
2nd in defensive WAR, NL.
6th in NL in RBI
Go complain about something else, like, "thet 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.