Yeah That One Hurt
“We had a plethora of wasted opportunities.”You don't say. Before we play the blame game, let's look at a few positives: - Ted Lilly threw yet another quality start and on a night when it seemed he didn't have his best stuff. At least early on he seemed to be missing his locations by quite a bit and getting hit hard, a cruddy Pirate offense certainly a contributing factor. - The top two spots in the order continued to produce going 6 for 13 with a run, three RBI's and two stolen bases. Unfortunately the middle of the order decided to take the night off. - Some nice defensive plays to keep the game going by Soriano and Theriot, although both looked like they were umpire-aided calls. The umps owed us a few from earlier in the year so file it under baseball karma. - Will Ohman performed his LOOGY duties to perfection and has only allowed one hit to a lefty all season on top of four walks in 19 plate appearances. It's the righties that have been giving him more trouble than usual. - Scott Eyre's three shutout innings lowered his ERA to 8.47. - Lou Piniella actually had a relief pitcher left for the 15th inning and a pinch-hitter for the 14th. Baby steps. Oh but much went wrong, beginning with the eight inning: - Lou brings Felix Pie into the game in the top of the 8th as a defensive upgrade over Cliff Floyd. One-run lead, a flyball pitcher and the middle of the Pirates lineup due up, seems like a smart move. But Lou negates all that in the bottom of the inning. Lee and Ramirez reach to start the inning and the Pirates bring in a lefty to face Pie. Lou, going for the kill, brings in Murton to counter and he pops out rather unceremoniously. If you're playing for defense in the top of the inning, why change your mind in the bottom half? With zero outs and runners on second and third, it would have been a good time to try the squeeze with Pie for that insurance run. If it fails, the team should still have a runner on third with less than two outs and you would have set yourself up with a better defensive outfield for the 9th even with a groundball pitcher coming to the mound. And of course... - Ryan Dempster issues a one-out walk to Nate McClouth although I didn't think it was a bad 3-2 pitch. Tailing two-seamer that just missed the plate that most lefties will chase thinking it's going to be a strike. A single later and Jack Wilson hits a flyball to right field. Jones should be out there if not for Lou's substituting in the eighth and while he may have just thrown it ten feet to either side of the plate or in front of him, he does have a stronger arm that would have had a better shot to nail McClouth. - More adventures on the basepaths that I could do without. Soriano gets thrown out at third when a ball doesn't get far away enough from the catcher. Theriot gets doubled off second when a liner by Murton that is in FRONT of him gets caught and Barrett gets thrown out at second base on a missed hit and run by Jacque Jones. - Neil Cotts is no longer invulnerable giving up his first run of the year. I'll pass out equal shares of blame on the offensive ineptitude in the eight to add insurance runs when we had two runners in scoring position and zero outs and Ryan Dempster for blowing his first save of the year against the bottom of the Pirates lineup. And of course Lou for some more questionable decision-making which of course would have been less questionable had Dempster, Murton or Jones done their jobs. While I wasn't nearly as up in arms about Sunday's game as some were, I did understand the concern. The concern was for games like today. Using up bench guys when you're losing to gain just the slightest advantage has a sort of Old West nobility about it. Better to go down with no bullets in the chamber than be left with a loaded gun and a bloody corpse. But when you're ahead or tied, I think the roster shuffling has to be more controlled. That's the time to save those bullets until you have an absolute clear shot and make sure that bloody corpse is in the opposing team's dugout. Well last time we blew a win against the Pirates we reeled off five straight, I'll take that trade-off.
Charlie 44 min 14 sec ago (view)
I dub this, "The Billy Hamilton Game."
crunch 50 min 54 sec ago (view)
hamilton HR...add that to the "odd stuff in 2020" list...first since 2018.
crunch 54 min 51 sec ago (view)
it's important to remember that tommy h is both young and in great shape with no pre-existing conditions and got smacked down really hard with Covid according to his own account.
we had an outbreak at our lab, 3 out of 14 people (all symptomatic), and 1 has been out 5 weeks now because she can't shake extreme fatigue and brain fog...took her 3 weeks to stop the hacking cough and chest congestion. she's in her early 50s with no pre-exisiting conditions, non-smoker, not overweight...
crunch 1 hour 58 sec ago (view)
same...especially after the first few weeks...
and in perfect 2020 manner, we also had cancelled games thanks to wildfire smoke and social justice protests to go with the pandemic cancellations.
Jackstraw 1 hour 1 min ago (view)
Sandbagging all season long. Very sly.
Cubster 1 hour 14 min ago (view)
Is it true that the Cubs are the only mlb team that did not have one test positive for COVID? Pitching coach Tommy H had it in the spring but no players.
Charlie 1 hour 39 min ago (view)
Kris Bryant is covering that inside corner the last two games. Love to see it.
champsummers 2 hours 1 min ago (view)
Honestly, the reasoning you outline is a bit beyond my limited cognitve wherewithal. But nevertheless, I am pleased to learn that we wont be squandering an option on him.
Dolorous Jon Lester 2 hours 22 min ago (view)
I dont believe it uses an option because he will be active on the seasons last day and won't ever end up getting technically optioned. If memory serves, the playoffs don't count as being "optioned" if you're not on the active roster
champsummers 2 hours 24 min ago (view)
Hmmm. Bringing up Marquez?
Doesn't that use up an option year?
Why would you want to waste an option year for one meaningless appearance in a meaningless game?
Cubster 2 hours 33 min ago (view)
honestly, I didn't think Mlb would make it through the 60 game schedule. 2020, scariest and weirdest year ever.
Cubster 2 hours 35 min ago (view)
Pregame radio: Marquez will see some action in today's game
Dolorous Jon Lester 3 hours 19 min ago (view)
Brailyn Marquez replaces Patrick "Good Luck Charm" Wisdom on the roster!
Cubster 6 hours 34 min ago (view)
The opening two series for the Cubs will be in Houston. If they get farther next would in Arlington Including the WS.
Jackstraw 10 hours 20 min ago (view)
Thanks, AZ Phil
Craig A. 15 hours 4 min ago (view)
If the cardinals loose and the giants win, the cardinals will have to play and win on Monday to make the playoffs.