Gameday Open Thread

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SP Sean Gallagher SP Hiroki Kuroda
  3-1, 4.55, 25 K, 10 BB, 31.2 IP
2-5, 3.93, 37 K, 23 BB, 71 IP
       
LF Alfonso Soriano LF *Juan Pierre
SS Ryan Theriot RF #Delwyn Young
1B Derrek Lee 2B Jeff Kent
3B Aramis Ramirez 1B *James Loney
RF *Kosuke Fukudome CF Matt Kemp
CF *Jim Edmonds 3B *Blake DeWitt
2B Mark DeRosa C Danny Ardoin
C Henry Blanco SS Chin-Lung Hu
P Sean Gallagher P Hiroki Kuroda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A win tonight and the Cubs are the proud owner of a winning road trip. They will aslo be the first team to 40 wins this season, a seemingly insignificant milestone that reader "JohnBeasley" shows is at the very least, a marker of good things to come.

First in the majors to 40:
2007: 6/9 - BOS (won World Series) and LAA (made playoffs)
2006: 6/11 - DET (won pennant)
2005: 6/8 - CHW (won World Series)
2004: 6/13 - NYY (made playoffs)

Source: BaseballRace.com

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SP Ryan Dempster SP Chad Billingsley
  7-2, 2.75, 63 K, 33 BB, 75.1 IP
4-6, 3.29, 71 K, 34 BB, 65.2 IP
       
LF Alfonso Soriano LF *Juan Pierre
SS Ryan Theriot CF Matt Kemp
1B Derrek Lee RF *Andre Ethier
3B Aramis Ramirez 2B Jeff Kent
RF *Kosuke Fukudome C Russell Martin
C Geovany Soto 1B *James Loney
CF *Jim Edmonds 3B *Blake DeWitt
2B Mark DeRosa SS Chin-Lung Hu
P Ryan Dempster P Chad Billingsley

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And so, here we are:

The final, deciding game in the Cubs' and Dodgers' best-of-2,021 game series.

Who'd have thought it would come down to this?

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SP *Ted Lilly SP Greg Maddux
  5-4, 5.54, 61 K, 21 BB, 65 IP
3-4, 3.69, 38 K, 12 BB, 70.2 IP
       
LF Alfonso Soriano CF Scott Hairston
SS Ryan Theriot 2B Edgar Gonzalez
1B Derrek Lee RF *Brian Giles
3B Aramis Ramirez 1B *Adrian Gonzalez
RF *Kosuke Fukudome 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
CF *Jim Edmonds SS Khalil Greene
C Geovany Soto LF Justin Huber
2B Mark DeRosa C Michael Barrett
P *Ted Lilly P Greg Maddux

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Cubs go for their tenth (10th!) win a row, a feat they haven't done since 2001 when they strung together 12 wins in a row. It would also be their third straight series sweep. Oh, it's fun to be a Cubs fan these days.

On the mound, it's Ted Lilly still searching for his 2007 form. Things started looking up for him in May, that is until he met a 20 mph wind flying out of Wrigley last Friday. A wind the Cubs offsense used to pull off one of those miracle wins that it seems every good baseball team has at least once a season.

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SP Jason Marquis SP *Wil Ledezma
  2-3, 4.98, 32 K, 22 BB, 56 IP
0-2, 4.50, 31 K, 21 BB, 26 IP
       
LF Alfonso Soriano CF *Jody Gerut
SS Ryan Theriot 2B Tadahito Iguchi
1B Derrek Lee RF *Brian Giles
3B Aramis Ramirez 1B *Adrian Gonzalez
C Geovany Soto 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
CF Reed Johnson LF *Paul McAnulty
RF Mark DeRosa C Michael Barrett
2B Ronny Cedeño SS Khalil Greene
P *Jason Marquis P *Wil Ledezma

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Cubs seek consecutive win number nine tonight versus the generally punchless Padres. While the Giants offense gets mocked for their futility, it's the Padres(3.66 R/G) and Nationals(3.74 R/G) currently battling for the bottom rung of the NL offensive ladder.

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SP Carlos Zambrano SP Cha Seung Baek

7-1, 2.33, 55 K, 24 BB, 81 IP
1-1, 5.23, 18 K, 13 BB, 31 IP




LF Alfonso Soriano CF *Jody Gerut
SS Ryan Theriot 2B Tadahito Iguchi
1B Derrek Lee RF *Brian Giles
3B Aramis Ramirez 1B *Adrian Gonzalez
RF *Kosuke Fukudome 3B Kevin Kouzmanoff
CF *Jim Edmonds C Michael Barrett
2B Mark DeRosa SS Khalil Greene
C Henry Blanco LF *Paul McAnulty
P #Carlos Zambrano P Cha Seung Baek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Cubs try to extend their winning streak to eight as they travel out West to face the struggling San Diego Padres. As Dr. Hecht mentioned earlier, the Cubs will get emergency starter Cha Seung Baek instead of Shawn Estes, who broke his thumb tripping on the way to the dugout. You can leave the Cubs, but Cubbery follows you everywhere.

For the Cubs, it's Carlos Zambrano, fresh off a 130 pitch effort against the Dodgers last week. Lou has already mentioned that he'll likely be on a shorter leash than usual. Hopefully it's not too short, as you'd like to keep his .316 hitting bat in the lineup.

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SP Ubaldo Jimenez SP Sean Gallagher
  1-5, 5.37, 48 K, 33 BB, 58.2 IP
2-1, 4.50, 17 K, 10 BB, 26 IP
       
LF *Scott Podsednik LF Alfonso Soriano
CF *Cory Sullivan SS Ryan Theriot
1B *Todd Helton 1B *Micah Hoffpauir
3B Garrett Atkins 3B Aramis Ramirez
RF *Seth Smith RF *Kosuke Fukudome
2B *Ian Stewart C Geovany Soto
SS *Omar Quintanilla CF *Jim Edmonds
C Yorvit Torrealba 2B Mark DeRosa
P Ubaldo Jimenez P Sean Gallagher

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do you top a 7-1 homestand and an 8-2 homestand? What about a 7-0 homestand? And let's not even think about that the Cubs would be going for the tenth straight win if it wasn't for those two unfortunate blown ninth-inning losses in Pittsburgh.

All this home-cooking might be needed, as the Cubs head out for a West Coast trip that will see them on the road for 23 of their next 32 games.

Today's lineup features Micah Hoffpauir in the three spot. I wonder what Lou had to do to get Derrek to take a game off? 

Game notes fun after the jump...

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SP *Glendon Rusch SP Ryan Dempster
  1-2, 6.41, 12 K, 11 BB, 19.2 IP
6-2, 2.56, 56 K, 29 BB, 70.1 IP
       
CF Willy Taveras LF Alfonso Soriano
RF *Seth Smith SS Ryan Theriot
1B *Todd Helton 1B Derrek Lee
LF Ryan Spilborghs 3B Aramis Ramirez
3B *Ian Stewart C Geovany Soto
C Chris Iannetta RF *Kosuke Fukudome
2B Jeff Baker 2B Mark DeRosa
SS *Omar Quintanilla CF Reed Johnson
P *Glendon Rusch P Ryan Dempster

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Former Cub Glendon Rusch makes his first appearance at Wrigley since September 4, 2006. After a none too successful comeback with the Padres earlier this year (6.41 ERA in 12 relief appearances), the Rockies signed him, sent him to Triple-A Colorado Springs, recalled him after two successful appearances for the Sky Sox, and you know now everything you need to know about what a desperate season the Colorado Rockies are having.

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SP Aaron Cook SP *Ted Lilly
  7-3, 2.82, 35 K, 22 BB, 76.2 IP
5-4, 5.23, 58 K, 21 BB, 62 IP
       
CF Willy Taveras LF Alfonso Soriano
RF #Jonathan Herrera 2B *Mike Fontenot
LF Ryan Spilborghs 1B Derrek Lee
3B Garrett Atkins C Geovany Soto
1B *Todd Helton RF *Kosuke Fukudome
C Chris Iannetta CF *Jim Edmonds
RF Jeff Baker 3B Mark DeRosa
SS *Omar Quintanilla SS Ronny Cedeño
P Aaron Cook P *Ted Lilly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With rain falling and plenty of those intimidating orange and red spots on the weather radar, we could well be looking at a rainout. That being the case, I'm going to save all of my good Omar Quintanilla material for another occasion.

This is the Rockies' only visit to Wrigley this season, and the Cubs have already made the trip to Denver, so a washout would presumably create a doubleheader. I imagine Saturday would be the DH day, so as not to complicate the teams' travel plans. (The Rockies play in Los Angeles Monday night, while the Cubs will be in San Diego.)

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SP *Jeff Francis SP Jason Marquis
  1-5, 6.18, 46 K, 24 BB, 59.2 IP
2-3, 4.97, 29 K, 20 BB, 50.2 IP
       
CF *Scott Podsednik LF Alfonso Soriano
RF *Seth Smith SS Ryan Theriot
1B *Todd Helton 1B Derrek Lee
3B Garrett Atkins 3B Aramis Ramirez
LF Ryan Spilborghs C Geovany Soto
2B *Ian Stewart RF *Kosuke Fukudome
C Yorvit Torrealba 2B Mark DeRosa
SS Omar Quintanilla CF Reed Johnson
P *Jeff Francis P *Jason Marquis

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The darlings of the National League in 2007 make their annual visit to Wrigley Field, bypassing the normal chartered bus in favor of an escorted ambulance. The Rockies find 1/3 of their starting lineup on the disabled list (Troy Tulowitzki, Matt Holliday and Brad Hawpe), along with five pitchers and Tulowitzki's replacement, Clint "Deer Meat" Barmes. It appears the devil is cashing in on the deal they made last August.

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SP Derek Lowe SP Carlos Zambrano
  2-5, 5.03, 44 K, 19 BB, 62.2 IP
7-1, 2.47, 52 K, 20 BB, 73 IP
       
LF *Juan Pierre LF Alfonso Soriano
2B Luis Maza SS Ryan Theriot
RF *Andre Ethier 1B Derrek Lee
C Russell Martin 3B Aramis Ramirez
1B *James Loney RF *Kosuke Fukudome
CF Matt Kemp C Geovany Soto
3B *Blake DeWitt 2B Mark DeRosa
SS Chin-lung Hu CF Reed Johnson
P Derek Lowe P #Carlos Zambrano

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carlos Zambrano is fresh off that remarkable game in which he stroked four hits off a trio of Pittsburgh pitchers and, oh, yeah, also threw the first seven innings in a 12-3 Cubs win.

Z was 1-1 last year against the Dodgers, including a horrible outing last September at Wrigley. Lowe pitched twice against Piniella's men in '07 and came away with a pair of ND's. Derrek Lee, who is 10-for-22 lifetime (1136 OPS) against the former Bosoxer probably couldn't get to the ballpark today early enough. For his part, Lowe hasn't won a game in more than a month and has a 7.29 ERA in his last six starts.

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SP Hiroki Kuroda SP Sean Gallagher
  2-3, 3.48, 34 K, 18 BB, 62 IP
1-1, 5.68, 14 K, 8 BB, 19 IP
       
LF *Juan Pierre LF Alfonso Soriano
SS Luis Maza 2B *Mike Fontenot
RF *Andre Ethier 1B Derrek Lee
2B Jeff Kent 3B Aramis Ramirez
1B *James Loney RF *Kosuke Fukudome
CF Matt Kemp CF *Jim Edmonds
3B *Blake DeWitt C Geovany Soto
C Danny Ardoin SS Ronny Cedeno
P Hiroki Kuroda P Sean Gallagher

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As you've probably heard by now, the Cubs are pretty good at home. 20-8 which seems like the best record, but is actually third behind the Red Sox and Braves and tied with the Rays. One of the many reasons for that 20-8 record, is the collective 308/390/498 batting line by the team at Wrigley.

But that isn't stopping Lou from tinkering with the Cubs lineup today. Ryan Theriot (.154 batting average over the last 7 days) and Mark DeRosa (.381 BA over the last 7 games) sit in favor of Mike Fontenot and Ronny Cedeno. And Geovany Soto (.182 BA over the last 7 days) and Jim Edmonds (.150 as a Cub) flip spots. What does it all mean? Probably nothing more than giving some of the bench players a few at-bats and some time off with the day game following the night game tomorrow. (Of course that theory only holds true if tomorrow was a day game...nuts!)

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SP Chad Billingsley SP Ryan Dempster

4-5, 3.76, 60 K, 29 BB, 52.2 IP
5-2, 2.70, 53 K, 26 BB, 63.1 IP




LF *Juan Pierre LF Alfonso Soriano
RF *Andre Ethier SS Ryan Theriot
C Russ Martin 1B Derrek Lee
2B Jeff Kent 3B Aramis Ramirez
1B *Mark Sweeney RF *Kosuke Fukudome
CF Matt Kemp C Geovany Soto
3B *Blake DeWitt CF *Jim Edmonds
SS Luis Maza 2B Mark DeRosa
P Chad Billingsley P Ryan Dempster

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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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

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SP Jason Marquis SP *Phil Dumatrait
  2-3, 4.96, 27 K, 17 BB, 45.1 IP
1-2, 4.39, 28 K, 25 BB, 41 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
C Geovany Soto 1B *Adam LaRoche
RF *Kosuke Fukudome RF Jason Michaels
2B Mark DeRosa 3B Jose Bautista
CF Reed Johnson C Raul Chavez
P *Jason Marquis P Phil Dumatrait

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

His leg doesn't hurt. His leg doesn't hurt. His leg doesn't hurt. Just keep repeating it to yourself as you watch Alfonso Soriano run the bases and man leftfield tonight. The guy says his leg is fine despite what your eyes and the television cameras may tell you.

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SP Carlos Zambrano SP *Zach Duke
  6-1, 2.45, 46 K, 19 BB, 66 IP
2-2, 4.23, 20 K, 19 BB, 55.1 IP
       
LF Alfonso Soriano 2B Freddy Sanchez
SS Ryan Theriot CF *Nate McLouth
1B Derrek Lee LF Jason Bay
3B Aramis Ramirez 1B *Adam LaRoche
C Geovany Soto RF Xavier Nady
2B Ronny Cedeño 3B *Doug Mientkiewicz
RF Mark DeRosa C Ronny Paulino
CF Reed Johnson SS Chris Gomez
P #Carlos Zambrano P *Zach Duke

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yes, the Washington Generals host the Harlem Globetrotters yet again.

The Cubs enter the game with an 8-1 record and 69-38 run differential this season against the Pirates. The lone loss occurred last Saturday at Wrigley Field, when these same two pitchers hooked up, and Zambrano, who has been so stellar in the first couple months of the campaign, went completely mental. Neither pitcher figured in the final decision, a 7-6 Pittsburgh win.

Tonight, Fukudome gets the night off, DeRosa moves to right, and Cedeño, who has hit Duke well (8-for-21), gets a start and gets to hit in front of DeRosa, who can't seem to hit at all on the road this year (11-for-62, .172, 530 OPS).

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