Tag Archive | "Brian Schlitter"

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No Joke — Cubs Suffer Worst Loss at Wrigley Field – Cubs 1, Brewers 18 – 8/2/10

Posted on 03 August 2010 by Lou

Wow – where to start.  During the Cubs 6-game skid, the squad has been outscored 62-17.  Ouch – where did the Cubs pitching go?

For most of the season, the Cubs pitching staff boasted the 5th best ERA in the National League and only 1 American League team had a better ERA than the Cubs.  But as of late, the wheels have come off and no one really seems to care anymore.  The 26-hit attack by the Brewers in the 18-1 win on Monday were the most hits allowed by a Cubs team since September 2, 1957!  The loss put the Cubs a season-high 14 games under .500 at 46-60.  They fell 13.5 games behind the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Central race and they now found themselves in 5th place in the Central.  Only the Pirates and Diamondbacks have a worse record in the National League than the Cubs.

Where did it all go so wrong?  The Cubs bats have been awful all season (their .258 team batting average is 14th best in all of baseball), but now the Cubs pitching staff has followed suit.  The Cubs now sport a 4.32 team ERA which puts them in the bottom 9 teams in all of baseball.  Unbelievable…

Some of the funny stats from last night’s loss.

The Brewers batted around in both the 4th and the 5th innings.  The Brewers scored at least 1 run in each of the final 6 innings.  Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder each went 5 for 7 in the win.  Fielder had 5 RBI’s while Braun had 2 RBI’s.  Former Cubs player Casey McGehee went 2 for 5 with 4 RBI’s and 3 runs scored (with 1 home run).  Corey Hart also had 4 hits, 1 RBI and 3 runs scored.

Cubs pitcher Randy Wells suffered his 9th loss of the season – 6 ER on 10 hits in 4 innings pitched.  Justin Berg pitched through the 5th inning when Wells couldn’t record an out and gave up 3 hits and 1 walk.  All 3 runs charged to him were unearned.

Casey Coleman made his major league debut and boy was it bad.  The brew crew lit up Coleman in his 2 1/3 innings of work — 6 ER on 8 hits and 2 walks.  Welcome to the majors Casey.

Brian Schlitter tried to clean up the mess in the 8th inning, but he didn’t fare much better – 2 ER on 5 hits.  Has this guy made any appearances this year without giving up a hit or a run? Since he made 2 scoreless appearances back at the end of June, here are Schlitter’s numbers through his last 5 outings — 5 1/3 innings pitched, 17 hits (2 home runs), 11 ER and 5 walks.  And yes, he has given up at least 1 ER in each of those last 5 appearances.

This is going to be a long, painful ride home during the final 1/3 of the season…

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Weekend Recap — Rocky High Sweep – Rockies Outscore Cubs 31-14 in 3-Game Weekend Set @ Coors Field – 7/30/10 – 8/1/10

Posted on 02 August 2010 by Lou

What a horrible weekend for the Cubs in Denver this weekend – not sure it’s even worth it to re-live the debacle.

Friday – 7/30/10 – Cubs 2, Rockies 17 – A 12-run 8th inning turned a close game into an embarrassing laugher for the Cubs.  Sean Marshall gave up hits to the 1st 2 batters he faced in the 8th inning, but then got 2 strikeouts and 2 strikes on Carlos Gonzalez before Gonzalez stroked an RBI single to start the record-setting rally.  The Rockies set a major league record by recording 11 straight hits and they had 13 hits in the inning overall which was a franchise-record. The Rockies scored 12 runs to extend their 5-2 lead to 17-2.  WOW.  The Rockies batted around twice in the inning.  Troy Tulowitki, Clint Barmes and Melvin More each had 2 hits in the inning.  Every Rockies hitter got a hit in the inning.

Sean Marshall was charged with 5 ER on 5 hits in 2/3 of an inning.  Andrew Cashner faced 6 batters and did not record a single out – 6 hits, 6 runs, 2 home runs.  And Brian Schlitter mopped up the mess with 1 ER on 2 hits and 2 walks as he recorded the final out of the inning on an Ian Stewart fly ball to deep center field with the bases loaded.

Marshall had this to say — “It was dumbfounding as for us as it was people to watch the game.  You hate to be on the receiving end.  I don’t think it’s going to happen again.”

Manager Lou Pinella had this to say — “I’d never seen an inning like that.  We had two outs and two strikes on a hitter and they score 12 runs.  I’d never seen an inning like that.” The problem is Lou – it seems like you or another member of the Cubs organization has said that same thing about a dozen times this year.  The Cub sseem to invent new ways to lose on a daily basis these days…

Saturday – 7/31/10 – Cubs 5, Rockies 6 – After Derrek Lee’s game-tying 3-run home run in the top of the 8th inning, the Cubs thought their luck might change. Marshall even came in and pitched a scoreless inning of relief in the bottom of the inning, but interim Manager Alan Trammell opted to stick with Marshall to face the left-handed hitting Carlos Gonzalez instead of bringing in closer Carlos Marmol to start the 9th.  And that turned out to be a fatal mistake as Gonzalez crushed the 1st pitch he saw into the 3rd deck in deep right field.  It was a walk-off 6-5 win for the Rockies as Gonzalez used that home run to complete hitting for the cycle in his final at-bat of the game.

Tom Gorzelanny looked mortal again in the elevation of Colorado.  He pitched 6 1/3 innings, but gave up 5 ER on 9 hits and 2 walks.

Sunday – 8/1/10 – Cubs 7, Rockies 8 – Another poor start to the game put the Cubs in a hole on Sunday.  Carlos Silva only pitched to 4 batters because he was suffering from an abnormally high heart rate.  He had to make a trip to a Denver area hospital and did not make the trip back to Chicago after the game.  Silva recorded one out, but suffered his 5th loss of the season, giving up 2 ER on 2 hits and a walk.  James Russell did not fare much better, giving up 4 runs (2 earned) on 2 hits and a walk in his 2 2/3 inning of work.  And while Carlos Zambrano tossed a scoreless 4th inning, he ran into trouble in the 5th inning giving up 2 ER on 2 walks and 2 hits.  He walked the first 2 men he faced in the inning and both runners scored.  Just like that – it was 6-0 after 2 innings and 8-0 after 5 innings.  Not good, when you are riding a 4-game losing streak.

The Cubs made it interesting in the late innings.  Derrek Lee and Geovany Soto each singled in runs in the 7th inning.  Alfonso Soriano cut the lead to 8-4 in the 8th inning with a solo HR.  In the 9th inning, Rockies closer Huston Street walked Lee and Soto with 1 out.  Marlon Byrd then triple in Lee and Soto and the lead was 8-6.  Soriano’s sac fly on a spectacular play by outfielder Nat Fowler plated Byrd to cut the lead to 8-7.  If Fowler doesn’t catch that ball, who knows how far Soriano goes on the play.  But with no one on base, Street struck out Jeff Baker to end the game.

One other bright spot for the Cubs — newly acquired Blake DeWitt had 3 hits in his Cubs debut.

All in all, it was a brutal road trip for the Cubs. After winning the 1st game in Houston, the Cubs proceeded to drop the final 5 games of the trip.  The Cubs are now 13 games under .500 at 46-59 and they trail the 1st place St. Louis Cardinals by 13 games…

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Another Series Loss to Lowly Astros – It Keeps Getting Clearer That Wholesale Changes are Needed on North Side – Cubs 1, Astros 8 – 7/28/10

Posted on 29 July 2010 by Lou

Another week, another series loss to the 42-59 Houston Astros – ha, ha, ha!  How does a team take 3 of 4 from the Philadelphia Phillies and then 2 of 3 from the St. Louis Cardinals, but then lose 4 of 6 games to the Houstonj Astros in a span of 9 days.  It just doesn’t make sense.  But then again, nothing about this 2010 Cubs team or this Cubs organization makes any sense these days.  It is becoming more and more clear that wholesale changes are needed on the North Side of Chicago is we expect to see the Cubs win the World Series “any time soon” – whatever that means.  Let’s look more closely at the 2 Astros series.

Last week at Wrigley Field, the Cubs lost 5-11, won 14-7 and then lost 3-4.  This week in Houston, the Cubs won 5-2, but then lost 1-6 and 1-8.  In the 6 games, the Astros outscored the Cubs 38-29.  How is that possible, especially when the Cubs didn’t have to face the Astros best pitcher – Roy Oswalt in any of the 6 games?  It is simply embarrassing and unacceptable.  Today’s loss can be summed up in 1 inning – the 1st – when the Cubs loaded the bases with nobody out.  Ryan Theriot led off with a single, Starlin Castro reached base on an error and Tyler Colvin walked.  But as has happened so many times this season, instead of the Cubs breaking the game open with a 4 or 5 run inning, the Cubs settled for 1 lousy run on a sacrifice fly by Aramis Ramirez.  When you have chances like that and you only push across 1 run, you are not going to win a lot of games.  After the Ramirez out, Xavier Nady struck out, Kosuke Fukudome walked to load the bases again, but then Jeff Baker struck out.  What a joke…

Theriot had 3 hits in the loss; Castro had 2 hits and Colvin had 1 hit and 2 walks.  The rest of the team??? 2 walks by Fukudome and 1 hit by Koyie Hill – that’s it.  No more hits, no more walks and because of that, no more runs. The 2-7 Bud Norris with the dazzling 1.61 WHIP and 6.08 ERA manages to hold down the Cubs to just 1 unearned run on 4 hits and 3 walks in 6 strong innings.  It is just too funny.

Randy Wells was cruising along until things started to unravel in the 6th inning.  A Hunter Pence RBI double tied the game at 1 and then a 2-run homer to Carlos Lee gave the Astros the lead for good in the 6th inning.  A 3-1 lead should not really be a big deal at all, but to this Cubs squad, it is almost insurmountable.  Then when you have 2 relievers toss batting practice in the 7th and 8th innings, you are all but assured another loss.  Brian Schlitter gave up 2 ER on 4 hits in the 7th inning and now has a 12.00 ERA and a 2.33 WHIP.  Bob Howry then gave up 3 ER on 4 hits before being replaced by Justin Berg who easily got the last out of the inning.  Why are Schlitter and Howry even on the 25-man roster?  Isn’t there anybody else down in Triple-A or Double-A who can do a better job?

I am getting increasingly frustrated with the product on the field for the Cubs.  It’s a start, with the “indifferent” Pinella leaving after the season, but we have to take a deeper look at what Jim Hendry has done.  All the Cubs “trade-worthy” players all come with a catch.  Kosuke Fukudome, Carlos Zambrano, Carlos Silva (because of the bad Milton Bradley contract), Alfonso Soriano – we’d all love to move these over-paid, under-producing bit players, but no team in their right mind will take them because of the crazy dollars still owed to each guy over the next year to 4 years.  And who’s fault is that?  Jim Hendry.  The last 3-4 years have been miserable to Jim Hendry in terms of his off-season moves, and it’s time for the Ricketts Family to take a close look at the guy who runs the team’s baseball operations.  Jim must go – and as soon as he does – this Cubs team will get better in a hurry…

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Cubs Hang Tough Against Cards in Weekend Series @ Wrigley Field – Cubs 5, Cards 6 Saturday 7/24/10 & Cubs 3, Cards 4 – 11 INN – Sunday 7/25/10

Posted on 26 July 2010 by Lou

The Cubs showed some grit against the Cardinals over the weekend in a “must-sweep series” at the Friendly Confines of Wrigley Field.  And while they could finish off the sweep on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball, I was impressed with the fact that the Cubs actually won the series.

In Saturday’s 6-5 win, give credit to Tom Gorzelanny for pitching well enough for the Cubs to win.  He tossed 6 innings of 3-run ball (despite 7 hits and 3 walks) to pick up his 4th straight win and 6th overall.

Youth proved useful again as well.  Andrew Cashner tossed 2 innings of relief in the 7th and 8th innings to get the ball to Cubs closer Carlos Marmol with a 1-run lead.  Despite putting the tying run on with a walk in the 9th inning, Marmol got the job done with 2 K’s to pick up his 18th save of the season.  Tyler Colvin led off the game with a home run again and Starling Castro had 3 hits, 2 RBI’s and 2 runs scored.

In Sunday’s tough 4-3 loss, the longball came back to haunt Ryan Dempster again.  Dempster did not have his best stuff, but he gutted out 103 pitches over 7 innings to put the Cubs in position to win the game.  He gave up 9 hits and 4 walks and his 6th inning home run to Albert Pujols ended up tying the game at 3.

Sean Marshall and Carlos Marmol each worked scoreless innings of relief, but Brian Schlitter served up Felipe Lopez’s game-winning home run in the 11th inning as the Cubs lost 4-3.  The Cubs had their chances against Chris Carpenter and 4 Cardinals relievers, but they could never push across that extra run in any given inning.  Marlon Byrd, Alfonso Soriano and Ryan Theriot each had 2 hits in the loss.

Carlos Silva goes for win number 10 on the season in Houston tonight.  Silva has not made it out of the 2nd inning in either of his last 2 starts, so let’s hope he puts together a good game tonight…

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Anatomy of a Disastrous 9-Run Inning – Is this a Cruel Joke?! – Cubs 0, Reds 12 – 7/2/10

Posted on 03 July 2010 by Lou

I thought I was having a bad nightmare for a second during the middle of the day yesterday – 9 Reds runs in the 7th inning on only 3 hits?  Is that even possible?  Unfortunately when you’re dealing with the 2010 Cubs, it is not just possible, it is inevitable.

Bronson Arroyo and Ryan Dempster were cruising through a fast, well-played pitcher’s duel which the Reds led 1-0 through 6 innings at Wrigley Field.  Then the wheels fell of for the Cubs in the top of the 7th inning:

Walk; Walk; Mike Fontenot fielding error that allowed the bases to be loaded with no one out.

Dempster strikes out Daniel Stubbs – bases still loaded but 1 out.

Dempster walks the pitcher Arroyo forcing in a run?! 2-0 Reds.

Brian Schlitter replaces Dempster.  Schlitter walks in another run. 3-0 Reds.

Schlitter gets 2nd out of inning.  Bases Still loaded, but with 2 outs now.

Schlitter passed ball allows a run to score. 4-0 Reds.

So let’s get this straight – the Reds score 3 runs without even getting 1 lousy hit?!  How does this happen?!

Schlitter intentionally walks Reds-killer Joey Votto to load bases again.

Now things start to get ugly.  Scott Rolen RBI single; Johnny Gomes 2-run double; Ramon Hernandez 2-run double; la-di-da-di-da.  Reds 10, Cubs 0.

Jeff Stevens served up a 2-run bomb to Votto in the top of the 8th inning and just like that it was 12-0.

Now granted, the pitching and fielding in the 7th inning left a lot to be desired, but it all comes back to the pitching.  Maybe if the Cubs have ONE RUN and more than 2 hits through the game’s first 6 innings, Dempster and the relievers and the fielders would not feel like they need to be perfect out there.  In their last 13 games, the Cubs have scored 3 runs or less 11 times and they have been shut out 5 times!!!  You cannot wins games this way.  The 2 times the Cubs did score 3 runs, they won!!!  So it’s not the pitching that is costing them games in 2010.  The starting rotation has the 2nd most quality starts in all of baseball in 2010.  And the Cubs’ 3.84 team ERA  is the 7th best in all of baseball.  Something has to give.

The position players need to start hitting and they need to start hitting soon. If not, we could see a lot of faces moving cities in the next few weeks as the trading deadline looms.

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