Posted on 16 April 2009 by Lou
The St. Louis Cardinals beat the Chicago Cubs 7-4 at Wrigley Field today. It was an ugly affair – 3 Cardinals errors and 1 Cubs error. Milton Bradley gettng ejected from the game by the home plate umpire. With the score tied at 4 in the bottom of the 6th inning, Bradley let a 3-0 count slip away with the bases loaded and only 1 out. He took a called 3rd strike on an off-speed pitch from Adam Wainright and was ejected for arguing the call and getting too close for comfort.
Next up is a Friday matinee at Wrigley Field. Carlos Zambrano will face off against P.J. Walters who has been called up to replace the injured Chris Carpenter.
Posted on 07 April 2009 by Lou
The Chicago Cubs defeated the Houston Astros 4-2 on Opening “Night” in Houston. Carlos Zambrano pitched 6 strong innings, giving up only 1 earned run on 5 hits. Zambrano had 3 walks to go along with 6 strikeouts in the win. Alfonso Soriano got the Cubs off to a good start with a lead-off home run off of Astros’ starter Roy Oswalt. Aramis Ramirez added a solo shot in the 2nd inning to give the Cubs a 2-0 lead, and Ryan Theriot’s sacrifice fly in the 4th inning increased the Cubs lead to 3-0. The Cubs added an insurance run on Micah Hoffpauir’s pinch-hit RBI single in the 9th inning which gave the Cubs a little cushion heading into the bottom of the 9th.
The Cubs bullpen looked mostly sharp. Aaron Heilman and Neal Cotts helped Zambrano get out of a 7th inning jam minimizing the damage to only one run after Big Z allowed the first 2 hitters to reach base. Carlos Marmol worked a scoreless 8th inning, issuing only a walk to Lance Berkman. Kevin Gregg recorded his 1st save as a Cub – it wasn’t pretty as he allowed a run on back-to-back singles and a sacrifice fly to open the inning. But Gregg re-grouped and recorded the final 2 outs to give Zambrano his first career opening day victory.
All-in-all – a good opening day Cubs fans. Here’s to many many more…
Posted on 31 March 2009 by Lou
Micah Hoffpauir and Koyie Hill have made the Cubs opening day roster. The Cubs released both Paul Bako and Mike Stanton as the Cubs roster now stands at 28 players. The position players are now set for the 2009 MLB schedule, while 4 relievers are still battling for the final 2 spots in the Cubs bullpen.
Hill outplayed Bako to earn the Cubs backup catcher job. Hill hit .391 this spring and showed tremendous resolve returning from a horrific table saw accident in which he severed three of his fingers. He played most of the 2008 at Triple-A Iowa and batted .275 with 17 home runs and 64 RBI’s. Bako played well this spring – .364 batting average – but it wasn’t enough.
Cubs Manager Lou Pinella had this to say about Hill: “Koyie’s worked hard, it’s a good story, he’s been here before. When he had a chance to catch here, he caught well and helped us win some ballgames. He had to come in here and compete, and compete he did. He’s had one of the better springs.
Hoffpauir had a tremendous spring for the Cubs. He batted .286 and led the team with 5 home runs. Hoffpauir was also among Cactus-league leaders in RBI’s with 24. Hoffpauir was excited to make the team right out of the gates: “It’s a great feeling. It’s a dream come true. To make the Opening Day roster is special. It’s the first time for me. Hopefully, I can stick around and help the team out a little bit.”
Congrats to Hill and Hoffpauir. Let’s hope they can help Soto and Lee get some extra rest during the course of the long MLB season and be productive members of the Cubs at the major league level in 2009.
Posted on 26 February 2009 by Lou
The Chicago Cubs defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 1st spring training game for both teams. Micah Hoffpauir slugged a 5th inning grand slam to put the Cubs ahead for good. Alfonso Soriano walked and singled in his first 2 at-bats. On the mound, after retiring the side in order in the 1st inning, Jeff Samardzija struggled through the 2nd inning – 2 earned runs, 3 hits and 2 walks.
Posted on 21 February 2009 by Lou
The Chicago Cubs could face a lack of depth in the infield during Spring Training. You starters are Derrek Lee at 1st base; Aaron Miles/Mike Fontenot at 2nd base; Ryan Theriot at shortstop; and Aramis Ramirez at 3rd base. The problem lies in the fact that Miles is expected to back up Theriot at shortstop, while Fontenot is expected to back up Ramirez at 3rd base. If anything happens to the 5 “infield starters”, the Cubs could be in trouble.
Ideally, Cubs Manager would like to see Miles and Fontenot get at least 400 at-bats apiece, which should allow Theriot some ample days off during the course of the long season at shortstop. Adding another infielder who could help back up Ramirez at 3rd base would be huge for the Cubs. One name thrown around is former Cubs player – Nomar Garciaparra. Nomar can play both 1st base and 3rd base and playing more of a reserve role could help him stay healthy during the course of the long MLB season.
Cubs GM Jim Hendry and Pinella have not said that any pick up is imminent, but Cubs scouts will keep their eyes and ears open once spring training games start in both Arizona and Florida in the next few weeks. Hendry made a nice pick up in Reed Johnson last spring before the season started, so maybe he will be able to work some magic again right before the start of the season. We’ll keep you posted with the lasted from Mesa here at MyCubsToday!