Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Brewers – 04/06/07

Game Four: Cubs (1-2) vs. Brewers (2-1)
Game Time – 7:05pm C.T. WGN TV, WGN Radio, XM Radio Channel 188
Location – Miller Park, Milwaukee

Rich Hill (0-0, -.–) vs. Dave Bush (0-0, -.–)

The Cubs open a 3-game series tonight against the Brewers at Miller Park. Rich Hill will make his 2nd career start and 3rd appearance against the Brewers. The Cubs hit the ball well against the Reds in the first 3 games of the season (.260/.325), but the 27 runners they left on base while scoring just 7 runs must be improved upon soon. As a team they have just 1 home run, 4 doubles and 6 RBI’s with a .327 SLG.

The Cubs will have their hands full this series against a very talented Brewers team that has played very well out of the gate. As a team they are hitting .294 with a .365 OBP and a .510 SLG. They have scored 15 runs, hit 4 home runs, 8 doubles and a triple. While their pitching staff has a 3.00 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP.

Rich Hill was 6-7 last season with a 4.17 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP but in the second half he was just short of brilliant. Hill was 6-3 with a 2.93 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP while striking out 79 and walking just 24. He had a very good spring and did not walk a batter but was slowed toward the end with a blister on his finger that has reportedly healed. Last year he pitched 7 innings against the Brewers and received a no decision. Hill gave up 2 runs on 6 hits, walked 2 and struck out 7. In his career against the Brewers, he has pitched just 11 1/3 innings with a 1.59 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP (2 runs on 6 hits, 13 k’s and 4 walks). The Cubs need Rich Hill to be on his game tonight and even their season record at 2-2.

Dave Bush is 1-2 in 5 career starts against the Cubs (all in 2006) with a 3.03 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP with a remarkable strike out to walk ratio….29 k’s to just 2 walks. Bush did give up 32 hits and 3 home runs in 35 2/3 innings and the Cubs hit .241 against him.

Michael Barrett is 0 for 2007 and might benefit from a night off but he is 3-6 in his career against Bush while Henry Blanco is hitless in 9 trips. Jacque Jones has struggled in his first 3 games but he might be able to get on track against Bush as well….6-20 with 3 doubles and a home run. Matt Murton is 5-12 with a double and 3 triples (.417/.462) against Bush and he has hit Brewer pitching very well in his short career…. .380/.448, 3 doubles, 2 triples and a home run.

This offense will generate runs, it is just a matter of time but if they continue to play the way they did on Thursday, Lou Piniella will have an early chance to prove how good he actually is.

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….

Quote of the Day

"You can’t sit on a lead and kill the clock. You’ve got to give the other man his chance. That’s why baseball is the greatest game." - Earl Weaver