The Cubs wrapped up a dismal 4-6 road trip by losing 3 of 4 to the wild card leading Rockies in Denver. The Rockies outscored the Cubs 33-18 in the series, as the Cubs fell 3 games behind the Cardinals for 1st place in the NL Central and 3 games behind the Rockies for the NL wild card lead. Can you say “Game Over”!
Manager Lou Pinella and pitching coach Larry Rothschild are out of ideas and probably already thinking about their golf games in October. To make matters worse, with the still-pending sale of the Cubs, there’s really not much that the Cubs will be able to do in the off-season to turn things around for the 2010 MLB schedule. The outfield is set – Alfonso Soriano, Kosuke Fukodome and Milton Bradley all have years left on their deals. The pitching staff is set – Carlos Zambrano, Ted Lilly and Ryan Dempster all have years left on their deals, as does Randy Wells who is not even arbitration-eligible yet. The Cubs will have to decide on Rich Harden, but the 5th starter slot could be filled from within – Sean Marshall, Jeff Samardzija, Tom Gorzelanny etc. The infield is also set – Aramis Ramirez and Derrek Lee at the corners, Ryan Theriot at shortstop and Geovany Soto behind the plate. Koyie Hill has established himself as a dependable catcher as well. So the only real question mark in the infield is the 2nd base position, where Mike Fontenot has clearly shown that he is not capable of being a consistent, productive every day player.
Unless the Cubs could pull off a trade to move an outfielder – probably having to assume some of the money that GM Jim Hendry overpaid to each of Soriano, Fukodome and Bradley – the Cubs will be stuck. And that doesn’t mean good things for 2010.
Sorry Cubs fans – hate to be brutally honest, but we could be in for a rough stretch for a few years to come.
Oh yeah – what about the 11-5 Cubs loss to the Rockies on Monday night? Aw, who cares anyway. It was more of the same. No clutch hitting, poor fielding, and bad pitching. Sound familiar?!