Game Thirty-Six: Cubs (15-20) vs. Padres (20-16)
Game Time – 1:20pm C.T. Comcast SportsNet, WGN Radio, XM Radio Channel 188
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Greg Maddux (5-2, 3.64) vs. Chris Young (3-2, 3.61)
For the second time in four days the phrase “a must win game” has to be uttered….just when everyone thought the Cubs had hit bottom, the 5th inning on Friday happened. What or who is going to make this “team” play baseball and not just go through the motions tossing around that round object that has kept 25 grown men mesmerized over the past 3 weeks. Greg Maddux has been as bad his last two starts (0-2, 12.46) as he was great in his first five (5-0, 1.35) and not only does Maddux need to pick up the win today, he needs to be the leader that changes the mindset of the entire “team”, give them a boost and pick up the last two wins before Monday’s day off. This is a rematch of last Monday’s finale in San Diego and the Cubs were able to hit Young. The Cubs scored 3 runs on 8 hits, but again only 2 walks and until they start taking some pitches the losses will continue to mound.
Although Murton and Cedeno had a rough inning on Friday and their defense has been spectacular at times and mediocre at best at others, the “rookies” have been more consistent throughout the year than many of the veterans. While Dusty’s managerial style is under fire again, the veterans need to look in the mirror and perform the way they are capable. Ronny Cedeno leads the team in batting average (.298) and Matt Murton leads the team in on base percentage (.375). The Cubs do not have a player hitting above .300 and two of the three highest averages are from the “rookies”….Michael Barrett leads the team in RBI’s with 19.
A true leader, a winner, must lead by example and the Cubs do not have that right now. Maddux is the one that has to take this title and lead them today as well as for the rest of the season. The Cubs must let the past three weeks go and play the game one step at a time….get a hit, take a walk, make a play, score a run, trust your teammate and build some confidence….they have tried everything else, what else do they have to lose….besides another ballgame.
Let’s Talk Cubbies Baseball….