Game One Hundred Forty-Three: Cubs (72-70) vs. Cardinals (69-71)
Game Time – 2:20pm C.T. WGN TV, WGN Radio, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Ted Lilly (14-7, 3.85/1.17) vs. Joel Pineiro (5-3, 4.28/1.26)
The Cubs make a quick stop at Wrigley today to face the Cardinals in the make-up from the rained out on August 19th. That was the Sunday night game in which Carlos Zambrano had been perfect for the first 3 innings. Today’s pitching match-up will be a rematch from the very sloppy game on the following Monday. Joel Pineiro beat Ted Lilly that day with Rick Ankiel playing a big role in the victory. That was then and this is now….
Both teams are coming off horrible weekends, the Cubs lost 2-of-3 in Pittsburgh while the Cardinals were swept in Arizona. The Cubs find themselves looking up at the Brewers for the first time in over 3 weeks and hopefully that will serve as a wakeup call for Lou Piniella’s underachieving team. Ted Lilly needs to be the stopper today and pickup a much-needed win. Not because it’s the Cardinals, not to keep pace with the Brewers but to help his team build confidence for the final 19 games of the season. Ted Lilly will be looking for his 15th win of the season. He is coming off an impressive performance against the Dodgers after a very mediocre August. Lilly picked up the only win in the series and gave up 2 runs on 6 hits in 6 2/3 innings. Lilly must set the tone today against the Cardinals, or his start later this week could be very challenging.
Lilly has been lights outs against the Cardinals this year and down right awful. He is 1-2 against the Cardinals this season with a 3.60 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP. Lilly picked up a hard luck loss to the Cardinals at Wrigley on April 20th….2 runs on 4 hits in 7 innings and then dominated them on July 25th in St. Louis….1 run on 6 hits in 7 innings. But his last start against the Cardinals at Wrigley was a struggle from the first pitch he threw….5 runs on 7 hits in 6 innings.
Dave Duncan has worked his magic with Joel Pineiro. The former Red Sox reliever has been very good for the Cardinals. Pineiro is 4-2 in 7 starts for the Cardinals with a 3.63 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP. He has allowed more than 3 earned runs only once and is coming off a win against the Pirates. Pineiro held the Bucs to 2 runs on 8 hits in 5 2/3 innings but had his highest pitch count (107) since returning to the starting rotation.
Pineiro beat the Cubs on August 20th and gave up 3 runs on 7 hits in 5 innings but Rick Ankiel throwing out Ryan Theriot at 3rd to start the game changed the momentum a leadoff double would have provided…. Alfonso Soriano did not play in that series.
Alfonso Soriano is 13-37 with 4 doubles, 2 home runs and 4 RBI’s in his career against Pineiro.
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….