Posted on 30 June 2012 by Lou
Matt Garza battled for his 4th win and Anthony Rizzo had another game winning hit as the Cubs defeated the Astros 3-2 on Saturday.
Garza did not have his best stuff – 9 hits and 3 walks in just 5 1/3 innings pitched – but he limited the Astros to just 2 ER’s to keep his team in the game.
In the pivotal 5th inning, Starlin Castro’s 2-out RBI single drove home Luis Valbuena to cut the Astros lead to 2-1. Then Rizzo’s bomb to deep right gave the Cubs the lead for good.
The bullpen did the rest – 4 2/3 innings of scoreless ball. Carlos Marmol walked a batter in the 9th, but struck out 2 to pick up his 7th save of the season. Since being re-inserted into the closer’s role, Marmol has 5 saves and he has given up a run only once – in mop-up duty at the end of a 10-5 loss to the D’Backs. Trade bait anyone?!?!
The Cubs go for the series sweep on Sunday when Travis Wood takes the hill.
Posted on 27 June 2012 by Lou
The Cubs took 2 of 3 games from the New York Mets this week at Wrigley Field to bounce back from a 2-4 road trip. Anthony Rizzo’s Cubs major league debut went off without a hitch on Tuesday night. He went 2 for 4 and his 2-out RBI double in the 4th inning proved to be the game winner in the Cubs 5-3 win. After Randy Wells struggled through the game’s first 3 innings, the Cubs bullpen did the rest.
The Cubs win guaranteed a series win, but the Mets absolutely destroyed Jeff Samardzija and the Cubs in the finale today – to the tune of 17-1. Samardzija fell to 5-7 on the season – he lasted just 4 1/3 innings, giving up 9 ER on 6 hits and 4 walks. He served up 2 home runs and only struck out 1 batter. Samardzija has been miserable in his last 4 start – 25 ER on 26 hits and 10 walks. And his previous outing to that stretch, he only allowed 2 ER, but he battled throughout giving up 7 hits and walking 5. Not good. Casey Coleman got sucked into the madness – Manager Dale Sveum was not about to tax the rest of his bullpen in the blowout, so Coleman was left out there on a tough day to serve up 7 more ER on 6 hist and 2 walks. He too allowed 2 home runs.
The Cubs could use an off-day – especially when it is supposed to be over 100 degrees here in Chicago on Thursday. Then they open up a weekend series with the Houston Astros. Fun fun fun…
Posted on 25 June 2012 by Lou
The Arizona D’Backs swept the Cubs in 3 straight ugly games over the weekend. The D’Backs outscored the Cubs 21-7 in the 3-game set. Rookie Wade Miley made it look easy against the struggling Cubs offense – he held the Cubs to just 3 hits in 8 innings, with the Cubs scoring their only run on Alfonso Soriano’s 14th HR of the season. Matt Garza fell to 3-6 despite pitching well – 3ER on 5 hits and 1 walk over 7 solid innings. He struck out 7.
The Cubs continue to have the worst record in baseball – at 24-48. They trail the NL Central leading Cincinnati Reds by an incredible 15.5 games – and we haven’t even hit the end of June yet. Travis Wood will square off against Johan Santana in the opener of a 3-game series with the surprising NY Mets. The Mets are 39-34 and they trail the Washington Nationals by only 3.5 games in the race for the top spot in the NL East.
But Cubs fans have the future to look forward to – Cubs top prospect Anthony Rizzo will make his season debut in Tuesday night’s game against the Mets. Expect Rizzo to play 1st base, shifting Bryan LaHair to right field and David DeJesus over to center field. That may also free up some off-days for Soriano who has continued to hobble around on a bum knee. Rizzo is stroking it at Triple-A Iowa – .342 batting average; 23 HR’s and 62 RBI’s.
GO CUBS GO!!!
Posted on 05 April 2012 by Lou
For a while it looked like the Cubs might actually win on opening day, but it wasn’t meant to be as the Cubs ‘pen blew a great outing from Ryan Dempster. Dempster worked 7 2/3 innings, giving up just 2 hits and 3 walks while striking out 10 Nationals hitters. Dempster got out of 2 early jams (2nd and 3rd with only 1 out in the 1st inning; bases loaded and only 1 out in the 3rd inning) to keep the game scoreless against Nats ace Stephen Strasburg. The Cubs eventually took the lead in the 4th inning on a timely 2-out single by Marlon Byrd which gave the Cubs a 1-0 lead. Dempster worked all the way into the 8th and had 2 outs with a runner on base when Manager Dale Sveum made his move. Sure it is only Game 1 and sure Dempster had racked up 108 pitches, but leave the guy out there. Sveum brought in Kerry Wood – who had a limited spring due to injury – to try to get the final out of the inning. But Wood walked 3 straight batters to force in the tying run. Not good.
Then Sveum called on Carlos Marmol in the 9th with the game tied 1-1. After he got 2 quick outs, Marmol gave up a double to Chad Tracy and a game-winning single to Ian Desmond and just like that the Cubs has lost 2-1. Hey, I guess at least Marmol threw strikes and didn’t walk a batter, right?
The Cubs did make it interesting in the 9th when Ian Stewart “tripled” to right field when Jayson Werth lost the ball in the sun in that dreaded corner-outpost area. Joe Mather pinch-ran for Stewart and Mather was quickly gunned down at the plate in a bang-bang play on Jeff Baker’s grounder to 3rd.
I have a feeling we’re going to see a LOT of games like this. Cubs starters keep the Cubs in the game with a lot of 3-2, 2-1 scores. Cubs offense doesn’t produce enough run-support. Cubs bullpen blows game. Cubs lose. I wish I could be more optimistic, but this team just has way too many holes and with no dead-on power-hitter who can serve as an equalizer with a big home run with runners on base, the Cubs will have one of the poorest offenses in 2012. Who knows, maybe we’ll see Anthony Rizzo and Brett Jackson a lot sooner than President Theo Epstein and GM Jed Hoyer have led on. Only time will tell…
Posted on 21 March 2012 by Lou
The Cubs impressed in split squad games and Carlos Marmol is going to be just fine.
Even though the Cubs lost to the Rangers 6-2, it wasn’t all bad. Ryan Dempster worked 6 innings of 2 run ball. He scattered 4 hits – one of which was a 2-run jack in the 2nd inning – and 2 walks with 3 K’s. Dempster appears to be on track to make his 2nd consecutive opening day start at Wrigley Field when the Cubs battle Stephen Strasburg and the Washington Nationals on April 5th at the Friendly Confines.
Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo each had 2 hits for the Cubs.
Carlos Marmol left the game after retiring only 2 batters in the 7th inning due to cramps in his hand. He has experienced cramping during spring training and he does not think it will be a problem. An MRI today confirmed no damage to his neck or upper shoulder area and he will get a few days off and be re-evaluated later this week. But it is great news that it appears that Marmol avoided any serious injury.
And although the A’s rallied to tie the Cubs in the 9th inning, Rodrigo Lopez worked an efficient 5 innings – just 1 ER on 3 hits and 1 walk with 4 K’s. Lopez will not gain a spot in the starting rotation, but he could prove useful as a nice veteran arm in the bullpen in 2012. After struggling all spring, Tony Campana went 4 for 5 and scored a run.
The Cubs get a much-needed day off today.
Posted on 17 March 2012 by Lou
Happy St. Patrick’s Day from your friends at MyCubsToday.com! Celebrate and enjoy the amazing weather!
Couple of Cubs side notes from yesterday –
Matt Garza worked 4 innings, giving up 2 ER on 3 hits and 1 walk with 3 K’s. It was a much better outing for the big righty.
Anthony Rizzo clubbed his 2nd home run of the spring.
The Cubs out-hit the Giants 7-6, but still lost 3-2.
Go Cubs Go!!!
Posted on 19 December 2011 by Lou
Gotta give props to Bruce Levine of ESPNChicago.com. I love this story and it’s just what I’m looking for from a “Cubs insider”. Sure I’d love for Tom Ricketts to throw a ton of money at Prince Fielder. I think it is much more prudent than throwing that money at Albert Pujols who is 4 years older. It still has its risks – signing anyone to an 8-10 year contract has risks – but it would probably work out pretty damn well for the Cubs in the long run. But let’s say the Cubs “low-ball” Fielder and his agent Scott Boras and the duo decide to run to Seattle or L.A. for the bigger/longer contracts. What should the Cubs do then.
Levine threw this little nugget out there today on his blog. Anthony Rizzo of the San Diego Padres – one of the top power-hitting prospects in baseball today. He plays 1st base, he’s a lefty and he’s only 22 years old. In 2010, Rizzo hit .331 with 26 dingers and 101 RBI’s at Triple-A Tucson. Not bad. He logged 128 at-bats at the major league level for the Padres at the end of the season, but struggled – .141 batting average with 46 K’s. Not good. Sure the Cubs would have to give up some young talent to get him – maybe an Andrew Cashner or Trey McNutt, but it might be worth it.
Here’s the intriguing part of Rizzo. Theo Epstein drafted Rizzo in the 6th round of the 2007 draft when Epstein was the Red Sox GM. Epstein used Rizzo as a major piece for luring current Padres GM Jed Hoyer (the former Red Sox Assistant GM and now the current Cubs GM) to trade established slugger Adrian Gonzalez to the Red Sox during the 2009-2010 off-season. So both Epstein and Hoyer have intimate knowledge of Rizzo’s talents and now that the Padres traded for 1st baseman Yonder Alonso from the Cincinnati Reds in the Matt Latos deal, the Padres have a log jam at 1st base with both Alonso and Rizzo in the mix. That doesn’t mean that the Padres will want to move either player, but it is an interesting developing situation. It’s definitely something we should keep our eyes on IF the Cubs don’t ink Fielder…