Posted on 27 September 2011 by Lou
Congrats to Matt Garza – who put the many distractions aside and kept his composure in picking up his 10th win of the season in last night’s 6-2 win over the Padres. As usual, it wasn’t easy and he almost didn’t get that double-digit victory.
Garza threw 122 pitches in 7 innings, giving up just 2 ER on 5 hits and 2 walks. He struck out 8, but left the game trailing 2-1 as the game entered the 8th inning. Fortunately, the Cubs bats rallied in the top of the 8th. Two walks put the go ahead runs on base and then Alfonso Soriano delivered his 26th HR of the season, a 3-run shot that gave the Cubs a 4-2 lead. And when Blake DeWitt knocked in 2 insurance runs with a single in the 9th, it secured Garza’s 10th win of the season. Garza has been the lone bright spot in the Cubs 2011 starting rotation. Garza made 31 starts, going 10-10 with a 3.32 ERA and 1.26 WHIP. He He led the team in wins, ERA and strikeouts (197). His 1.26 WHIP was also the best among starters. Ryan Dempster was #2 in each of those categories. Garza turns 28 in November, so he should be a fixture atop the Cubs starting rotation for years to come (assuming they sign him to along-term deal at some point in the near future – maybe even extending him this off-season). Garza should have won a lot more games too. He lost 5 times when he gave up 3 ER or less. He also would have had 2 more wins if not for blown saves. Given those stats, Garza had more of a 15-win season, than a 10-win season.
Here’s looking forward to the new Cubs GM making extending Garza to a long-term deal a high priority in his early tenure. We’ll keep you posted as soon as we hear anything.
Posted on 26 September 2011 by Lou
As the season winds down, Casey Coleman has made a big statement during his last 2 starts. Coleman worked into the 6th inning before giving up a home run and RBI double that gave the Padres a 2-0 lead. Coleman gave up just those 2 ER on 5 hits and 2 walks. He had 7 strike outs. In his previous start, Coleman picked up the win over the Brewers with a 6-inning gem against one of the better-hitting lineups in the National League. Coleman held the Brew Crew to just 1 ER on 2 hits and 3 walks with 8 K’s.
Coleman also broke up Matt Latos’ no hit bid with a 1-out triple in the top of the 6th inning. The Cubs managed just 1 other hit on the night – Starlin Castro’s single to lead off the 7th inning. Despite stealing 2nd base with nobody out, Carlos Pena, Bryan LaHair and Steve Clevenger could not bring him in.
With their 3rd straight loss, the Cubs fell to 70-90 on the season.
Matt Garza looks to continue his solid end to the 2011 campaign with his last start on Tuesday night. A win would give him double-digit wins in his 1st full season as a Cubs starter. Garza has not allowed more than 3 earned runs in any of his last 10 starts dating back to August 3rd – hello ace!!! Let’s hope he finishes off the great streak with his 10th win on Tuesday…
Posted on 01 September 2011 by Lou
After taking 2 of 3 from the Giants in San Francisco, the Cubs return home for a weekend series against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Cubs are 59-78 and they trail the 1st place Brewers by 21.5 games in the NL Central race.
Ryan Dempster starts Friday’s matinee affair at Wrigley Field.
Posted on 30 August 2011 by Lou
The Cubs made it 2 in a row behind Matt Garza en route to a 5-2 win over the Giants.
Garza had another solid start and has really shown “ace” stuff since getting settled into his new digs on the north side of Chicago. Garza went 6 2/3 innings, allowing just 2 ER on 9 hits and 1 walk. He struck out 6 and lowered his ERA to 3.64 and his WHIP to 1.32. If he can win 3 of his September starts, he will hit double-digit wins for the Cubs in 2011.
Sean Marshall, Kerry Wood and Carlos Marmol recorded the final 7 outs of the game without allowing a Giants hitter to reach base. Marshall notched his 29th hold, while Wood notched his 20th hold. Marmol picked up save #31.
Alfonso Soriano hit another HR. He now has 24 on the season. He and Garza each had 2 hits in the win.
The Cubs finish up the 3-game road trip against the Giants Wednesday afternoon with Rodrigo Lopez on the bump. After a day off Thursday, the Cubs face the Pirates and Reds at Wrigley Field from Friday through Wednesday of next week.
Posted on 29 August 2011 by Lou
Randy Wells tossed his 1st career complete game shutout in the Cubs 7-0 win over the Giants in San Francisco on Monday night. Wells has turned his season around with some good pitching of late. In his last 4 starts, he has given up just 7 ER on 16 hits in 27 2/3 innings pitched. He is 3-0 in those 4 starts. While his ERA is still over 5.00 at 5.06, he has lowered his WHIP to 1.38 and he has re-gained the confidence that deserted him after he went on the DL after just 1 start to kick off the 2011 campaign.
Wells faced only 4 batters over the minimum in the game – 2 hits and 2 walks allowed. He allowed only 2 runners to reach base 2nd base.
Alfonso Soriano gave the Cubs the 1st lead of the game with a solo HR of Tim Lincecum in the 5th inning. Then the Cubs blew the game open with 2 more HR’s against Lincecum in the 7th inning. Geovany Soto hit a solo shot and Blake DeWitt’s 3-run bomb to right field finally chased Lincecum from the game with the Cubs leading 5-0. Carlos Pena added a solo shot later in the inning and Marlon Byrd singled home DeWitt in the 9th to cap the scoring.
Matt Garza squares off against Ryan Vogelsong in Game 2 of the series Tuesday night.
Posted on 26 August 2011 by Lou
Randy Wolf pitched the Brewers past Rodrigo Lopez and the Cubs 5-2 on Friday night at Miller Park.
Lopez gave up 4 runs (2 earned courtesy of a Darwin Barney error) on 5 hits and 4 walks in 6 innings pitched.
Starlin Castro hit a solo home run to lead off the game.
The Cubs now trail the Brewers by 21.5 games in the NL Central race.
Posted on 25 August 2011 by Lou
Matt Garza suffered a rare bad outing in the series finale against the Braves on Thursday afternoon at Wrigley Field. Garza gave up 6 runs (only 3 earned because of a Starlin Castro error) on 8 hits and 2 walks in 6 innings of work. The loss dropped Garza down to 6-10 and likely will lead to Garza having a losing record in his 1st full season with the Cubs. Going into the game, Garza had given more than 3 ER in only 1 start since July 7th. He had lowered his ERA down to 3.62 and had emerged as the Cubs most reliable starter.
The Cubs are now 57-74 and they have dropped 4 of their last 5 games. The Cubs trail the Milwaukee Brewers by 20.5 games in the NL Central race.
Posted on 24 August 2011 by Lou
Randy Wells made his best start of the 2011 season with a dominating 6+ inning effort in Wednesday night’s 3-2 win over the Braves. Wells gave up just 1 run on 2 hits and 2 walks as he worked into the 7th inning. His lone run came on a solo home run to Jason Heyward. Wells even got into the offensive act in the 2nd inning as the Cubs plated all 3 runs in the frame. Alfonso Soriano hit a 2-run home run and then Wells’ RBI groundout added the much needed 3rd run.
The bullpen did the rest as Sean Marshall, Kerry Wood and Carlos Marmol closed the door on the Braves bid for a comeback. Marmol worked a perfect 9th inning with 2 K’s to notch his 30th save of 2011.
Posted on 23 August 2011 by Lou
The Braves topped Casey Coleman and the Cubs 5-4 on Tuesday night at Wrigley Field. It was the Cubs 3rd straight loss.
Coleman worked 5 innings, giving up 5 ER on 5 hits and 2 walks. The Braves scored all 5 of their runs in the 4th inning to take a 5-0 lead. It was Coleman’s 6th loss of the season.
Aramis Ramirez went 5 for 5 on the night with 2 RBI’s and a run scored.
Alfonso Soriano also hit an inside the park solo home run in the Cubs 4-run 5th inning.
Posted on 22 August 2011 by Lou
The Braves shut out the Cubs 3-0 on Monday night at Wrigley Field. The Cubs are now 56-72 and they trail the Brewers by 20 games in the NL Central race.
The Cubs offensive woes hurt tough-luck loser Ryan Dempster. The Cubs stranded 15 runners in the game, including 11 in the 1st 6 innings alone. Despite 9 hits and 7 walks, the Cubs could not push even 1 run across the board. Aramis Ramirez had 3 hits and Carlos Pena had 2 hits in the loss.
Dempster worked 6 solid innings, notching his 16th quality start of the season. He gave up just 3 ER on 6 hits and 3 walks, while striking out 8.
The bullpen continued its solid work – James Russell, Jeff Samardzija and Kerry Wood combined for 3 scoreless innings and 5 K’s to keep the Cubs in the game.
Mike Quade benched Starlin Castro for his lack of effort in Sunday night’s loss to the Cards. Check out more here —