Game Five: Cubs (2-2) vs. Brewers (2-2)
Game Time – 6:05pm C.T.
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 175
Location – Miller Park, Milwaukee
Carlos Zambrano (1-0, 1.50/1.33) vs. Dave Bush (0-0, 18.00/3.00)
After spending close to 24 hours trying to explain Friday’s ninth inning loss to the Brewers, Lou Piniella’s crew will try to notch their third win of the season behind Carlos Zambrano tonight.
From the Sun-Times on Friday’s ninth inning struggles:
”You can’t walk as many people as we did from the seventh inning on. You just can’t do it. You’re going to lose,” said Piniella, who was most upset about the Duffy walk — for the pitch selection as much as the result. ”Get the ball over the plate. Make the other team beat you. Period.”
“Piniella called Hill into his office after the game to make the point clear enough to be heard out in the clubhouse: Don’t fool around with secondary pitches there; make Duffy hit a fastball.”
The beauty of baseball is no matter how bad a team plays on a given day there is typically a game the next day that can erase the memory of a difficult loss. Players must have short memories and the ones that do are usually the best of the best.
Carlos Zambrano is coming off the first Opening Day win of his career and must channel his energy tonight the way he did in Houston last Monday. On the offensive side, the big bats of Alfonso Soriano and Aramis Ramirez need to have a better game…and Derrek Lee’s season must start tonight against a pitcher that he’s had limited success against in 24 career at bats.
The Cubs will be without Geovany Soto once again with Aaron Miles penciled in behind Koyie Hill on the Cubs’ depth chart. Carlos Zambrano was excellent in his first start against the Astros. He allowed only one earned run in six-plus innings on five hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Zambrano was helped out by his defense and the run he was charged with came after he left the game.
The last time Zambrano was on the mound at Miller Park he threw a no-hitter against the Astros on September 14…for his career, 7-5 in 12 starts with a 3.24 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP at Wrigley Field North.
Big Z is 10-8 in 23 career games, 22 starts, against the Brewers with a 3.65 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP.
- Ryan Braun – 5-for-16 with a double, a home run and a walk
- Dave Bush – 0-for-2
- Mike Cameron – 1-for-10 with a walk
- Craig Counsell – 6-for-26 with 2 doubles and 6 walks
- Chris Duffy – 3-for-9 with 2 walks
- Prince Fielder – 9-for-28 with 4 doubles, a home run and 7 walks
- Bill Hall – 7-for-38 with 2 doubles, 2 triples and 6 walks
- J.J. Hardy – 2-for-17 with a home run and 3 walks
- Corey Hart – 5-for-17 with a triple and a walk
- Jason Kendall – 10-for-33 with 2 walks
- Rickie Weeks – 7-for-29 with 2 doubles and a home run
Dave Bush will make his first start of the season tonight. He pitched in relief of Jeff Suppan on Opening Day and gave up two runs on three hits in an inning of work…with one strikeout. Bush started putting things together at the end of last season (4-2 in 13 games, 12 starts with a 3.91 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP) and posted a 9-10 record in 31 games, 29 starts, with a 4.18 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP.
The Brewers used Dave Bush last year in a strange home-road platoon and for good reason. Bush allowed close to two runs less per nine innings at Miller Park (6-4 in 17 games, 16 starts, with a 3.50 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP). The Brewers are depending on Dave Bush taking the next step in his career.
Bush was 0-2 in 4 games, 3 starts, against the Cubs last season with a 6.10 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP…but the Cubs hit just .181 against him. The reason for the record and the inflated ERA, of the 13 hits, six were home runs and they walked nine times in 20 2/3 innings.
For his career, Dave Bush is 1-7 against the Cubs in 12 games, 11 starts, with a 4.84 ERA and a 1/09 WHIP.
- Mike Fontenot – 1-for-5 with a double
- Kosuke Fukudome – 2-for-6 with 2 doubles and 4 walks
- Joey Gathright – 2-for-9
- Koyie Hill – 0-for-2
- Derrek Lee – 4-for-24 with a double
- Aaron Miles – 0-for-8 with a walk
- Aramis Ramirez – 8-for-25 with 3 doubles, 3 home runs and 2 walks
- Alfonso Soriano – 8-for-25 with 2 doubles, a home run and 2 walks
- Ryan Theriot – 3-for-16 with 2 doubles
- Carlos Zambrano – 0-for-1
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….