Game One Hundred Fifty-Nine: Cubs (96-62) vs. Brewers (88-71)
Game Time – 7:05pm C.T.
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet, ESPN – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Miller Park, Milwaukee
Ryan Dempster (17-6, 2.99/1.21) vs. Jeff Suppan (10-10, 5.06/1.53)
Updated – 5:52pm C.T. – According to a report from the Sun-Times, Lou Piniella announced his rotation for the NLDS – Ryan Dempster in game one, Carlos Zambrano in game two, Rich Harden in game three with Ted Lilly in game four.
On March 31st the Chicago Cubs and the Milwaukee Brewers kicked off the 2008 season. The Cubs started the season with two losses to the Brewers then picked up the first win of year behind Ryan Dempster. A magical summer and 156 games later, the two teams will finish what they started so many months ago.
Lou Piniella’s crew opens the last series of the regular season behind their Game One starter in Ryan Dempster. Piniella will send Dempster, Ted Lilly and Jason Marquis to the mound while the Brewers will go with Jeff Suppan tonight, Dave Bush for the injured Ben Sheets on Saturday afternoon and CC Sabathia on three days rest on the season’s final day.
The Cubs are undefeated at Miller Park this season (4-0 against the Brewers and 2-0 against the Astros) and will have a big influence on which team they face in the National League Division Series. The Brewers and Mets are tied for the NL Wild Card while the Phillies hold a one game lead over the Mets in the East. While the Brewers will try to celebrate making the post-season against the Cubs, the Mets will face the Marlins and the Phillies will take on the Nationals…. Ryan Dempster will make his final start of the regular season tonight with a chance to post his 18th win. Dempster has put together a great year and figures to turn his performance into dollar signs in the off-season. Without a doubt, Ryan Dempster has been the most consistent starter for Lou Piniella this season.
Dempster is coming off a solid start last Sunday against the Cardinals. He allowed 1 run on 6 hits in 5 innings the day after the Cubs clinched the National League Central Division crown. Dempster not only ended the Cubs home schedule with a solid win over the Cardinals….but completed an impressive 14-3 year at the Friendly Confines.
Dempster is 2-1 in his last 4 starts with a 3.24 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP….in the second half, 7-2 with a 2.57 ERA and a 1.27 WHIP.
Dempster is 3-3 in 12 starts on the road this season with a 3.22 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. He will make his fifth start against the Brewers tonight….4-0 with a 2.52 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP (8 runs, 7 earned, on 19 hits in 25 innings with 24 strikeouts and 9 walks).
Brewers’ stats against Dempster this season:
- Ryan Braun – 2-for-11 with a double and a walk
- Mike Cameron – 0-for-8
- Craig Counsell – 2-for-3
- Ray Durham – 6-for-12 with 3 doubles
- Prince Fielder – 4-for-10 with a double and a home run
- Bill Hall – 0-for-9
- J.J. Hardy – 1-for-10
- Corey Hart – 0-for-9 with 2 walks
- Jason Kendall – 3-for-9 with a walk
- Jeff Suppan – 0-for-1
- Rickie Weeks – 2-for-4 with 2 walks
Jeff Suppan has been inconsistent at best this season. He put together an impressive August (5-0 in 6 starts with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP) and was one of the many reasons the Brewers led the NL Wild Card race by 5 1/2 games at the beginning of the month….since September 1st, a totally different story.
Suppan is 0-3 in his last 4 starts with a 10.47 ERA and a 2.20 WHIP while opponents have hit a robust .382 against him. Suppan is coming off a horrible start against the Reds last Friday….5 runs on 5 hits (2 home runs, one each by Joey Votto and Jay Bruce) without a walk and 2 strikeouts.
Suppan is 3-3 in 12 starts at Miller Park this season with a 4.54 ERA and a 1.51 WHIP. Whichever lineup Lou Piniella runs out should make Suppan throw a lot of pitches. In 172 2/3 innings….66 walks to go along with 199 hits.
In 2 starts against the Cubs this season, Suppan is 1-1 with a 9.00 ERA and a 2.00 WHIP….they have hit .370 against him in 10 innings of work.
- Ronny Cedeno – 4-for-9 with a double and a triple
- Ryan Dempster – 1-for-4
- Jim Edmonds – 5-for-20 with 2 home runs
- Kosuke Fukudome – 1-for-5 with a double
- Reed Johnson – 1-for-5
- Derrek Lee – 20-for-42 with 7 doubles, 4 home runs and 9 walks
- Felix Pie – 3-for-11 with a double
- Aramis Ramirez – 10-for-37 with 4 doubles and a home run
- Alfonso Soriano – 7-for-36 with 2 doubles
- Geovany Soto – 2-for-5 with 2 home runs
- Ryan Theriot – 5-for-14 with a double
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….