Game One Hundred Forty-Four: Cubs (75-68) vs. Brewers (69-75)
Game Time – 7:05pm C.T.
Coverage – TV: WCIU – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 186
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Rich Harden (9-8, 4.04/1.31) vs. Braden Looper (12-6, 4.77/1.43)
Updated – 4:03pm C.T. – Cubs called up So Taguchi on Wednesday afternoon and added him to the 40-man roster.
Rich Harden will try to become the Cubs’ fourth double-digit winner on the season tonight in his 26th start (Ted Lilly, 12 – Randy Wells, 10 – Ryan Dempster, 10). Harden has struggled against the Brewers this season and tonight will be a big test for the soon-to-be-free-agent.
Sam Fuld is listed as day-to-day after an MRI on Tuesday revealed just a bruise on his right hand. The Tribune reported Tuesday night that if Fuld is not back soon the Cubs could call up either Tyler Colvin or James Adduci. Neither Colvin nor Adduci is on the Cubs 40-man roster … which currently stands at 39 players.
Tonight it all begins with Rich Harden and not mailing in the remainder of the season … Which Rich Harden will show up tonight? The one that can dominate a lineup or the one that issues free pass after free pass. Rich Harden has walked 12 batters in his last three starts (14 innings) but has struck out 25, which is an excellent number. The strikeouts and the walks however have run up his pitch count and the last time he completed six innings was back on August 26 against the Nationals.
Rich Harden is one of the big decisions facing the Cubs this winter and many feel more than a one-year deal for Harden would be a mistake. Harden has pitched rather well in a Cubs’ uniform and could be a valuable piece to the future … if the Cubs do not overpay in either years or dollars.
Rich Harden has been very, very good at night this season. He is 6-3 in 13 starts with a 2.69 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP … Harden is 3-6 in 14 home starts with a 5.99 ERA and a 1.58 WHIP.
Tonight will be Harden’s 26th start of the year and since the break Harden is an impressive 4-2 in 11 starts with a 2.39 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP.
Rich Harden is 0-1 in two starts against the Brewers this season with a 9.00 ERA and a 1.75 WHIP.
- Ryan Braun – 3-for-11 with 2 doubles
- Mike Cameron – 2-for-12 with a double, a home run and a walk
- Frank Catalanotto – 1-for-4 with a double and 2 walks
- Craig Counsell – 1-for-6 with a walk
- Prince Fielder – 1-for-8 with a home run and 3 walks
- Jody Gerut – 1-for-8 with a double and 2 walks
- J.J. Hardy – 1-for-10 with a home run and a walk
- Corey Hart – 2-for-5 with a home run
- Jason Kendall – 0-for-7 with a walk
- Felipe Lopez – 2-for-6 with a double
- Casey McGehee – 2-for-2 with a triple
- Corey Patterson – 0-for-2
The Cubs will face an old nemesis tonight in Braden Looper. While Looper is 4-6 in 10 career starts, 42 games, against the Cubs he owns a 2.59 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP. The Cubs always have trouble scoring runs against Looper and it figures to be more of the same tonight.
Braden Looper has not lost a game since August 11 and is coming off a win against the Diamondbacks. Looper allowed three runs on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings with a walk and three strikeouts.
Tonight will be Looper’s 15th start away from Miller Park. He is 8-3 with a 5.00 ERA and a 1.53 WHIP … in his last three starts, 1-0 with a 3.86 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP.
Looper is 1-0 in two starts against the Cubs this season with a 2.45 ERA and a 1.64 WHIP.
- Jeff Baker – 0-for-1
- Andres Blanco – 1-for-1
- Milton Bradley – 2-for-9 with 2 home runs and 2 walks
- Mike Fontenot – 3-for-13 with 2 walks
- Jake Fox – 1-for-3
- Kosuke Fukudome – 6-for-19 with a double and a home run
- Rich Harden – 2-for-3
- Koyie Hill – 0-for-4 with a walk
- Micah Hoffpauir – 1-for-4 with a double
- Derrek Lee – 8-for-29 with a double and a home run
- Aramis Ramirez – 7-for-26 with 4 walks
- Geovany Soto – 4-for-13 with a double, a home run and 2 walks
- Ryan Theriot – 6-for-24 with a double and 2 walks
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….