Game Sixty: Cubs (27-32) vs. Brewers (24-35)
Game Time – 1:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 185
Location – Miller Park, Milwaukee
Ryan Dempster (4-5, 3.76/1.11) vs. Dave Bush (1-5, 4.97/1.66)
Can the Chicago Cubs win a series? The last time Lou Piniella’s crew won a series was against the Dodgers (May 25 – May 27) and if the Cubs want to get back to .500 they must start winning on a consistent basis.
The Cubs have shown flashes this season of what they are capable of, case in point Wednesday night, but they have yet to build on any momentum from the game before. As the cliche goes, momentum is only as good as the next day’s starting pitcher … this afternoon it’s Ryan Dempster.
The Cubs end the 11-day odyssey and nine-game road trip this afternoon. Not only has it been a bad trip (3-5) but it has been a long one. The three-city tour added a flight and created a three-game in three cities in three days scenario.
Tyler Colvin and Chad Tracy should be in Lou’s starting lineup today. Colvin hit Dave Bush pretty good the last time the he faced the Brewers’ right-hander and Piniella said Tracy would platoon at third with Jeff Baker.
Aramis Ramirez could be out for a month according to a report in the Sun-Times. Ramirez is eligible to come off the DL on June 23. The Cubs will be in Seattle facing one of Lou’s old teams, as well as a former teammate.
Today it all begins with Ryan Dempster … and winning two games in a row. Ryan Dempster has posted wins in two of his last three starts … despite the fact he is serving up a lot of longballs. Dempster gave up just three runs on six hits to the Astros his last time out. But two of those left the yard in 6 1/3 innings. Dempster struck out seven and walked two … the all-important 3:1 strikeout to walk ratio.
Dempster struggled in May to the tune of a 1-4 record in six starts with a 4.54 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP. Dempster is 2-4 in his last seven starts with a 4.50 ERA and a 1.21 WHIP. The most concerning stat … nine home runs allowed in his last seven games (48 innings).
Dempster must record his first homer-less game since May 25 this afternoon in order to give his team a chance.
Today will be Dempster’s third start of the season versus the Brewers. He is 2-0 with a 3.86 ERA and a 1.36 WHIP (six runs on 14 hits in 14 innings with five walks and nine strikeouts).
Ryan Dempster is 13-3 in 41 career games, 19 starts, versus the Brewers with 10 saves and a complete game. In 151 1/3 innings, Dempster has allowed 47 earned runs on 118 hits (2.80 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP).
Brewers’ Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster
- Ryan Braun – 6-for-30 with 2 doubles, 2 home runs and 2 walks
- Dave Bush – 0-for-2
- Craig Counsell – 7-for-26 with a double, a home run and 5 walks
- Jim Edmonds – 8-for-27 with 2 doubles, 2 home runs and 6 walks
- Alcides Escobar – 1-for-6
- Prince Fielder – 9-for-28 with 4 doubles, 2 home runs and 6 walks
- Jody Gerut – 3-for-11 with a double and a walk
- Carlos Gomez – 2-for-5
- Corey Hart – 3-for-26 with a home run and 3 walks
- Joe Inglett – 2-for-2 with a triple
- Casey McGehee – 4-for-12 with a double and a walk
- Rickie Weeks – 8-for-24 with 4 walks
Dave Bush had a decent start to the season (1-2 in five starts in April with a 4.60 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP) but had a bad May (0-3 in five starts with a 5.64 ERA and a 2.01 WHIP). Bush has not posted a win since April 20.
The Cubs must be patient this afternoon. Bush will issue his fare share of free passes … then some. In 58 innings this season, Bush has walked 29 and struck out only 31.
Bush last pitched out of the pen on June 6 against the Cardinals … just 1/3 of an inning. In his last start on June 1 in Florida, Bush gave up three runs on seven hits in six innings with two walks and three strikeouts … one of his better outings of the year.
This afternoon will be Dave Bush’s third start of the year against the Cubs. He is 0-1 with an 8.38 ERA and a 1.97 WHIP.
As mentioned, the Cubs must work the count and take what Dave Bush gives them this afternoon.
Cubs’ Career Numbers against Dave Bush
- Jeff Baker – 2-for-4
- Marlon Byrd – 1-for-6
- Tyler Colvin – 3-for-3 with a double, a home run and a walk
- Ryan Dempster – 0-for-2
- Mike Fontenot – 3-for-14 with 2 doubles and 3 walks
- Kosuke Fukudome – 11-for-22 with 5 doubles, 2 home runs and 5 walks
- Koyie Hill – 1-for-10 with a walk
- Derrek Lee – 6-for-34 with 2 doubles, a home run and a walk
- Xavier Nady – 3-for-13 with a home run
- Alfonso Soriano – 10-for-34 with 4 doubles, a home run and 2 walks
- Geovany Soto – 3-for-10 with 2 home runs and 2 walks
- Ryan Theriot – 11-for-31 with 2 doubles and 2 walks
- Chad Tracy – 2-for-13 with a double
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