Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Rockies – 04/23/08

Game Twenty-One: Cubs (14-6) vs. Rockies (9-11)
Game Time – 7:35pm C.T.
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 188
Location – Coors Field, Denver

Rich Hill (1-0, 3.86/1.43) vs. Franklin Morales (1-1, 6.60/1.67)

The Cubs are off to their best start since 1975 and as a report in the Tribune mentioned, that Cubs’ team “was 28-21 and in first place on June 5th, but went 47-66 the rest of the way to finish in a tie for fifth place in the NL East.” So as Lou Piniella keeps reminding everyone, there are still a lot of games left to play this season.

Lou Piniella’s crew opens a 2-game series tonight in Denver against the Rockies and another explosive offense. The Cubs have outscored their opponents 44-11 in the last 6 games and with the thin air in Coors Field….the Cubs might have to beat the Rockies at their own game.

Rich Hill is coming off a solid start last Friday against the Pirates. He gave up only 1 run on 3 hits in 5 innings with 3 walks and 4 strikeouts….his first victory of the year. Lou Piniella pulled him after 5 innings because the Cubs had the lead and he wanted Hill’s start to end on a positive note. With that said, Coors Field might not be the best choice to try to continue to build his confidence.

Hill and his trademark curveball have problems in Denver. To put it simply, the ball does not break and his career numbers prove it. Hill is 0-2 in 2 career starts against the Rockies, both at Coors Field, with a 11.32 ERA and a 2.13 WHIP….the Rockies have hit an astonishing .357 against him. Last year, Hill lost to the Rockies on August 11th, 15-2, as the Rockies pounded out 7 runs on 9 hits in 5 2/3 innings.

  • Matt Holliday – 2-for-4 with a double and 2 walks
  • Scott Podsednik – 2-for-5
  • Ryan Spilborghs – 3-for-5 with a double
  • Troy Tulowitzki – 2-for-3

One of the reasons the Rockies finished last year the way they did was Franklin Morales. The very talented southpaw was 3-0 in 5 starts down the stretch for the Rockies with a 2.88 ERA and a 0.88 WHIP….he held opponents to a .184 batting average. But, so far this season it has not been as easy.

Morales received a no-decision on April 6th against the Diamondbacks, he threw 6 shutout innings and gave up just 2 hits. On April 12th against those same D’Backs in Arizona, Morales left after 4 innings….7 runs on 7 hits with 4 walks and 1 strikeout. He beat the Astros in Houston last Friday, 4 runs on 5 hits in 5 innings with 4 walks and 2 strikeouts. In 15 innings this year, Morales has walked 11 and struck out only 5.

Tonight will be the first time the Cubs have faced Franklin Morales.

Finally, the Cubs are only 1 win away from becoming the second organization in Major League history to win 10,000 ballgames.

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….

Quote of the Day

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow." - Albert Einstein