Game Thirty: Cubs (13-16) vs. Reds (14-14)
Game Time – 6:05pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet Plus – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 186
Location – Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati
Carlos Silva (2-0, 2.90/1.00) vs. Homer Bailey (0-1, 6.04/1.76)
After being swept by the Pirates, the Cubs shook things up a little and called up Starlin Castro from Double-A Tennessee. Castro will start at shortstop on Friday night and hit eighth in Lou Piniella’s lineup. To make room for Castro, Chad Tracy was optioned to Triple-A Iowa.
Reports from Cincinnati on Friday afternoon indicated Castro and Cubs’ new second baseman Ryan Theriot worked with Alan Trammell on infield drills.
Starlin Castro will have his ups and downs. On some plays he will look spectacular. Castro has a strong arm and a shortstop’s range … think Alcides Escobar and Elvis Andrus. But on other plays he will look like a 20-year old playing in the big leagues for the first time. The Cubs and Lou Piniella must be patient with him.
Offensively, Starlin Castro has gap power and can hit to all fields. His speed allows him to turn doubles into triples. But again, the Cubs and the fans must not expect Starlin Castro to be a savior for a team that is struggling to win ballgames and score runs.
Starlin Castro will number #13.
The Reds won the first series of the year against the Cubs. While the Cubs were busy being swept by the Pirates, Cincinnati took two of three from the Mets. The Reds do not quit and have a knack at winning games in their last at bat. As they learned last month, the Cubs must play a full nine-innings against the Reds.
Tonight will be a rematch of the game back on April 9. Carlos Silva out pitched Homer Bailey but the Cubs’ pen blew the game … one of the many reasons the Cubs are 6-10 on the road this year.
Tonight it all starts with Carlos Silva … but a little fire and maybe some swagger would be good to see out of the players and the manager. After their worst three-game stretch under Lou Piniella, the Cubs will turn to Carlos Silva to end the three-game losing streak. This is not a scenario anyone envisioned when the season began … Carlos Silva on the mound when the Cubs need a great start.
Silva is coming off his worst start of the year … a five-inning no decision against the Diamondbacks. The Cubs won the game but Silva allowed five runs on eight hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Arizona took advantage of the wind blowing out and launched three homers against Silva.
The Cubs’ third Carlos put together a solid outing against the Reds in his first start of the year. Silva surrendered one run on three hits in six innings but the Cubs’ pen wasted his effort.
Silva is 1-0 in two road starts this season with a 1.50 ERA and a 0.58 WHIP.
Carlos Silva has no record in six career appearances, one start, versus Cincinnati with a 4.97 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP.
Reds’ Career Numbers against Carlos Silva
Homer Bailey – 1-for-1
Jay Bruce – 0-for-2
Orlando Cabrera – 13-for-33 with 4 doubles and a home run
Miguel Cairo – 1-for-2
Juan Francisco – 0-for-1
Jonny Gomes – 0-for-2
Ramon Hernandez – 4-for-20 with 2 doubles
Laynce Nix – 2-for-6
Brandon Phillips – 1-for-5
Scott Rolen – 2-for-8 with a double
Drew Stubbs – 1-for-3 with a double
Joey Votto – 0-for-3
Homer Bailey has struggled this season and undoubtedly the Cubs will make him look like a Cy Young award candidate. After a solid finish to 2009, Bailey has not pitched to expectations and many feel if he had minor league options left he would not be with the big league team.
Bailey is coming off a good start against the St. Louis Cardinals. He received a no-decision and allowed three runs, two earned, on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings. Bailey struck out six and walked three. Bailey has struck out 14 and walked just four in his last two starts.
The Cubs inconsistent offense managed only three runs on seven hits in five innings against Bailey back on April 9.
Homer Bailey is 1-1 in three career starts versus the Cubs with a 5.63 ERA and a 2.00 WHIP.
Cubs’ Career Numbers against Homer Bailey
Jeff Baker – 0-for-3
Tyler Colvin – 0-for-2 with a walk
Mike Fontenot – 3-for-6 with a double and a walk
Kosuke Fukudome – 0-for-3
Koyie Hill – 1-for-6
Derrek Lee – 5-for-7 with a double
Xavier Nady – 1-for-1 with a walk
Aramis Ramirez – 2-for-7
Carlos Silva – 0-for-1
Alfonso Soriano – 3-for-6 with a double and a home run
Geovany Soto – 0-for-1
Ryan Theriot – 2-for-3
Chad Tracy – 0-for-2
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …