Game Sixty-Six: Cubs (29-36) vs. A’s (33-34)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 184
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Randy Wells (3-5, 5.15/1.49) vs. Dallas Braden (4-6, 3.95/1.16)
Can the Chicago Cubs build on Wednesday night’s win? As the cliché goes, momentum is only as good as the next day’s starting pitcher … and Randy Wells has not been that good for the last six weeks. Reportedly Lou Piniella and Larry Rothschild found something mechanically wrong in Wells delivery when he’s pitching from the stretch. The Cubs need to win a series … they’ve lost five in a row.
Randy Wells talked with Greg Maddux and is viewing today’s start as the beginning of his season. The Cubs have been outscored 46-27 in the first inning of games this season … and a lot of those runs have come with Wells on the mound.
Geovany Soto and Jeff Baker will be in the starting lineup once again against the southpaw Dallas Braden. Will Xavier Nady be in right, or Tyler Colvin?
On Ryan Theriot bobblehead day … it all begins with Randy Wells. There have been rumblings that Randy Wells could be pitching for his spot in the rotation this afternoon. Randy Wells has been horrible of late but the Cubs feel they figured out what is wrong.
The White Sox were the latest to knock Wells around … five runs on 10 hits in five innings with three walks and six strikeouts. The last time Wells completed six innings was back on May 22 and the Cubs need to see him have a good outing this afternoon.
Wells said he was having confidence problems in his last outing. Wells used the phrase “first inning curse” which is concerning for more than one reason. There are no such things as curses, just bad decisions and poor execution. The other problem is that he blamed something that does not exist … whether he was joking or not, it is not good to hear from a big leaguer.
Randy Wells has been lit up at Wrigley this season. After posting a 7-5 record in 14 home starts last season with a 3.21 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP, Wells is 1-3 in six starts this year with a 6.47 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP.
Since the last time he won a game on April 30, Wells is 0-5 in seven starts with a 6.47 ERA and a 1.61 WHIP.
This afternoon will be Randy Wells’ first career appearance against the Athletics.
Kevin Kouzmanoff (0-for-3) and Adam Rosales (2-for-6) are the only two players on Oakland’s active roster that has faced Wells.
The Cubs will get their first look at “Mr. Perfect“. The 26-year old southpaw has struggled since his perfect game on May 9 against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Dallas Braden is coming off a loss to the Los Angeles Angels (five runs, four earned, on 11 hits in 5 2/3 innings with a walk and four strikeouts) and has not posted a win since his perfecto.
Braden is 0-4 in his last six starts and the A’s are winless in his last six outings as well. Braden has allowed 21 runs, 20 earned, on 38 hits in 36 innings with seven walks and 22 strikeouts (5.00 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP).
Dallas Braden is 1-3 in five road start this season with a 5.79 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP … during the day, 3-1 in four starts with a 3.33 ERA and a 0.93 WHIP.
This afternoon will be Dallas Braden’s first career appearance versus the Cubs.
Marlon Byrd (6-for-16 with three doubles) is the only active Cub that has faced Dallas Braden.
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …