Game One Hundred Twenty-Two: Cubs (62-59) vs. Cardinals (58-61)
Game Time – 2:55pm C.T. Fox TV, WGN Radio, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Sean Marshall (5-6, 4.25/1.35) vs. Anthony Reyes (2-11, 5.48/1.33)
Lou Piniella’s crew has finally reached the top of the Central Division by more than just percentage points and now comes the hard part….they have to figure out a way to stay there. Not too long ago, the Cubs were 9 1/2 games back of the Brewers and they enter play today 1/2 game ahead of Milwaukee and 3 games ahead of the Cardinals despite posting a 6-10 record in August.
While it is nice to be in first place, it is only August 18th and the Cubs must take of business today. Derrek Lee and the offense needs to kick it back into gear against Anthony Reyes but it all starts with Sean Marshall. Sean Marshall has struggled of late but pitched well enough to win in his last start against the Rockies. He allowed 3 runs on 6 hits in 5 innings but the offense could not take advantage of early opportunities against Tim Harikkala. Marshall has not posted a win since the gem he threw in Cincinnati on July 28th. He is 0-2 in his last 3 starts with a 10.38 ERA. Marshall has only 5 strikeouts in those starts and has given up 22 hits to go along with 3 walks….just under a 2.00 WHIP. Marshall must limit his baserunners and throw strikes against a very good Cardinals offense that will be out to prove a point today.
Today will be Marshall’s first start of the season against the Cardinals. Marshall faced the Cardinals twice last season including his big league debut on Sunday night baseball on April 9. 2006. The Cubs won both of his starts but Marshall did not receive a decision in either one of those games. The Cardinals hit him pretty hard last season to the tune of a 5.06 ERA (6 runs on 12 hits in 10 2/3 innings) with a 1.31 WHIP.
- David Eckstein – 2-5
- Albert Pujols – 1-4
- Scott Rolen – 3-4, with a home run and 2 RBI’s
- So Taguchi – 3-5, with a double and a RBI
Marshall is 2-4 in 7 games at Wrigley this year with a 5.02 ERA and a 1.46 WHIP.
After starting the season 0-10 and then being demoted to Triple-A, Anthony Reyes is 2-1 in his last 4 starts with a 3.00 ERA. He has not allowed more than 3 earned runs in those starts and has slightly more than a 2:1 strikeout to walk ratio (11 strikeouts, 5 walks). Reyes is finally pitching to his potential.
Reyes is coming off a win against the Dodgers his last time out. He gave up only 2 runs on 7 hits in 6 innings at Busch Stadium. But he has not won a road start this season (0-6 in 8 starts with a 6.33 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP) and is 0-2 against the Cubs this year with a 6.00 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP (8 runs on 11 hits in 12 innings) with 10 strikeouts and 2 walks. Today will be Reyes’ 4th career start against the Cubs. He is 0-4 in 4 career games with a 5.40 ERA and a 1.40 WHIP.
- Ronny Cedeno – 3-5, with a double and 2 RBI’s
- Mark DeRosa – 2-3, with 2 doubles
- Derrek Lee – 2-6, with a double
- Matt Murton – 2-6, with a home run and a RBI
- Aramis Ramirez – 1-6, with a home run and 2 RBI’s
This is round two of the Cubs and Cardinals series.
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….