Cubs vs. Pirates: Lester vs. Taillon (Game 10)

CHC (2-7): Jon Lester (1-0)

PIT (5-3): Jameson Taillon (0-1)

First pitch 1:20pmCDT

The Cubs arrive at Wrigley with a 2-7 record, the second best team OPS in the NL, and a bunch of journeyman relievers duct taped into the shape of a MLB bullpen.

Lester has performed as expected so far this season. He’s worked 12 innings and allowed 4 earned runs in his two starts. More of the same could be OK if the offense shows up. No Pirates with significant at bats have had much success against him, unless you count Cervelli’s .263/.317/.447 in 38 at bats. 

Jameson Taillon put up a very solid 2018 and is off to a respectable start this season (13 IP, 5 ER, 9K:2BB). He faces a Cubs’ offense that has put up MVP numbers against him (.320/.381/.584) and which has been playing with palpable urgency. Rizzo and Baez have wrecked him to the tune of 1.320 and 1.684 OPS respectively in 39 total at bats. If not for the ceremony of the home opener, Bryant may have gotten the day off to regroup; he’s slashed .143/.200/.429 against the righty.

It’s unseasonably temperate in Chicago for opening day: 63 degrees F around game time. No worries about a rainout for this one (unlike Wednesday and Thursday’s games).

Go Cubs!


ump's zone is crazy wide so far in the 1st...PIT getting a bit angsty.

I'm at work and I can only sneak over to the TV from time-to-time.  What was Lester's injury?  Gameday is lousy on details.

Edit:  Gameday must have heard me complaining.  They updated with a note -- "Cubs pitcher Jon Lester left the game due to an injured leg."  Did it look like he pulled a hammie or something?

Sounds like he felt tightness in his hamstring after running the bases.

Thanks.  And really!?  Geez!  Just what the bullpen needs today.

Whoever put down Descalso for first run scored at Wrigley this season and Lester with first RBI has a pretty nice leg up on the Predictions Contest.

dat pen tho...brach/kintzler/rosario/strop

7ip 4h 2bb 8k, 0r/er this...

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Trump administration on Monday scrapped a historic agreement between Major League Baseball and the Cuban Baseball Federation that would have allowed Cuban players to sign with U.S. teams without needing to defect.


The senior Trump administration official suggested that the agreement would have subjected the players to “human trafficking” by the Cuban government, making them “pawns of the Cuba dictatorship.”


I know, no politics here, but damn!

yeah..."sigh" was the best i could do while staying neutral.

lester getting an MRI...damn.

i can't even imagine who is gonna fill in for him if he misses a start (or more).

underwood is on the 40-man, but that is a very weak option.  j.steele is on the 40-man, too, but the majors might be a stretch for him right now.  it might be t.clifton time sooner than later.

Colin Rea is my guess.

Has MLB experience, and options remaining.

It almost certainly would have been Alec Mills if it wasn't that he is at EXST trying to get into game-shape, but the Cubs signed Colin Rea and Christian Bergman (who got released) just for this eventuality, which is to say, an MLB ready SP who can provide a spot start or two until the SP prospects with upside (Robinson, Swarmer, Rucker, Hatch, and Steele) are fully-ready for MLB. Then the Cubs can just DFA Rea when they don't need him anymore, and thank him for his service.  

Chatwood would fill in I am sure.

that could be a slippery slope for a team already maxing out their payroll.  if chatwood gets an all-star selection or gets enough cy young votes his 2020 contract could escalate from 13m to 17m.


seriously, though...ew gross chatwood.

Who will fill in for the pitcher they thought they were getting when they signed Chatwood?  Same with Darvish.

Inevitable April Rain-Out ...

Good news is that the Cubs/Pirates can sitck a make-up game from this week on July 11, the Thursday after the all star break. PIT is in town for that first series (Fr-Sat-Sun) of the symbolic 2nd half. 

Not a totally crappy option. 

Angels are probably screwed though... 

Actually, if an LAA game is cancelled this weekend, I'd probably look for MLB to stick the LAA/Cubs make up on July 11. LAA starts after the break on the road at StL (F-S-S). Not alot of common off-days for LAA & Cubs, especially when LAA is anywhere remotely close to the midwest. 

A rainout during the Angels series could forestall the issue of finding a Lester stand-in.

Lester to the IL. 

"As for a replacement, Maddon praised how Tyler Chatwood is throwing and added he's not sure what the front office's view is at this point regarding a call-up."

can someone hook me up with maddon's weed connection because he's obviously getting some primo stuff...

If not Chatwood, then whom?

i wanted to make a joke moreso than i had actual solutions to the issue.

unless they want to add someone to the 40-man he's probably as good of an option as anyone else considering no one else is an obvious option.  if it's only 1 start needed before lester returns it's probably the most sane option, too.

day off off next off monday following...there's some rest periods in there for heavy pen use and/or 4-man rotation options over the next couple weeks.

Recent comments

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  • Mike Wellman 2 hours 31 min ago (view)

    One 2 women umps in MiLB worked the SB series. Pal of our son’s from LL days was SB clubhouse mgr. this year. He spoke highly of Emma’s work but said visiting teams often did not. Also spoke highly of B-Zo on his brief rehab stay when he bought the team McD’s, a la Prez Dollar Menu. So, 2 Cub branches made playoffs so far. Can the big Cubs make it 3?


  • JustSayin' 10 hours 46 min ago (view)

    South Bend won seven post-season games.  No team they played won any against them.  So the Midwest League Cubs run the table and win the Championship!  A couple recurring offensive stars, solid defense and lots of strong pitching did the trick.


  • crunch 13 hours 37 min ago (view)

    home or away for WAS...they can throw scherzer, strasburg, or corbin at anyone down the stretch and still have an ace for the 1-game wildcard.

    that should play well into their advantage in the last couple weeks as well as the WC playoff.  if the cubs can't luck their way back into 1st it's going to be a hell of a Wild Card if WAS is in no matter who's on top of the WC standings.


  • Charlie 14 hours 11 min ago (view)

    Might as well catch the Cards while they're at it ;)

    Last time I can remember the division and the Wild Card race this tight was 2015. Funny how similar and yet how different that situation was!


  • crunch 15 hours 10 min ago (view)

    the funny thing is, like early-career randy johnson, batters are extremely uneasy in the box when facing him.  part of that helps lead to weak contact and also leads to walks and HBPs, though...


  • Craig A. 15 hours 54 min ago (view)

    Cubs better aim for the first wild card. There’ a very slim chance we beat Washington at home. 


  • Craig A. 15 hours 56 min ago (view)

    So we keep Maples for intimidation?


  • crunch 16 hours 31 min ago (view)

    maples showcasing how he can fall apart from batter to batter...from a sick 3-pitch K to a 2-2 HBP to a 3-1 HBP.

    it's all wild, not retalitory...umps in a bad place since warnings were given based on early HBP's by PIT and maples is tossed.  even PIT doesn't think it was intentional and their dugout is calm.


  • crunch 17 hours 20 min ago (view)

    236 homers...franchise record previously set in 2004.

    hoerner puts the team over the top.


  • crunch 18 hours 18 min ago (view)

    maddon (whether he's here next season or not) seems to be in no hurry to get him work.  it's actually a bit impressive how we've not heard even a shred of shade about his lack of use from descalso.

    ...but he did see what the organization did to pretty much end tony barnette's there's that.  i think lastella ruined throwing roster movement and player use tantrums for everyone.


  • Dolorous Jon Lester 1 day 2 hours ago (view)

    I can’t imagine they go into next season like that. He’s been insanely bad.


  • crunch 1 day 7 hours ago (view)



  • Eric S 1 day 11 hours ago (view)

    He gets infrequent pinch hitting appearances - and seemingly K’s in each one. 

    I guess Descalso is the back up plan to start at second next season should Hoerner get injured while cliff diving or hit by falling space debris in the off season


  • Hagsag 1 day 13 hours ago (view)

    Roller coaster


  • crunch 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    i keep forgetting descalso is back with the cubs.  he's practically been shelved on the pine.


  • crunch 1 day 14 hours ago (view)

    South Bend Cubs (YouTube)