Game One Hundred Thirty-Seven: Cubs (59-77) vs. Mets (66-70)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 188
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Ryan Dempster (12-9, 3.71/1.29) vs. Jon Niese (8-7, 3.70/1.38)
The Cubs are 8-3 under Mike Quade … Could Q’s crew actually complete the sweep of the Metropolitans on Blackhawks Day at Wrigley Field? It is fitting that Ryan Dempster will shoot for career win number 100 on the day Chicago’s hockey team is being honored at the old ballpark.
In Other News … and Rumors
The Cubs have decided to flip-flop Casey Coleman and Carlos Silva in the rotation. Quade announced Saturday that Coleman will go on Labor Day in the opener against Houston and Silva will make his return Tuesday night.
Bruce Levine discussed all things Cubs during Talkin’ Baseball Saturday morning (ESPN 1000). While the off-season is still two months away from kicking into high gear, Levine changed his stance on the Cubs’ payroll for 2011 and mentioned the likelihood of Adam Dunn being in a Cubs’ uniform next season … and beyond.
As for the payroll, Levine thinks the Cubs will operate in 2011 near the same $140+ million mark they did this season. Levine pointed out the Cubs must spend wisely … then brought up Adam Dunn.
Levine feels Jim Hendry will do all he can do to bring Adam Dunn to the North Side of Chicago to play first base. Levine pointed out how defensively challenged Dunn is but reminded those listening how well he hits at Wrigley Field.
The Cubs 2010 season comes to an end four weeks from today … but this afternoon it all begins with Ryan Dempster … Ryan Dempster is coming off his worst start of the season … and arguably his most ineffective start since returning to the rotation in 2008. Simply put, Dempster was horrible against the Pirates but it was his mistake that sent his outing south before it ever got started.
Dempster allowed seven runs on seven hits in three innings with three walks and four strikeouts.
Before his outing against the Bucs, Dempster had been spectacular but still finished August with a 4-1 record in six starts with a 2.89 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP.
Dempster is 5-5 in 14 starts at Wrigley this season with a 3.90 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP.
Dempster did not face New York during the series at Citi Field in April. He is 9-4 in 24 career games, 13 starts, with a 5.57 ERA and a 1.81 WHIP.
Mets Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster
- Carlos Beltran – 5-for-7 with a home run and 2 walks
- Henry Blanco – 0-for-6
- Luis Castillo – 1-for-6 with a walk
- Angel Pagan – 0-for-3
- Jose Reyes – 2-for-5 with a triple and a walk
- David Wright – 2-for-3 with 3 walks
Jon Niese shutdown the Cubs back in April and is coming off a bad outing against the Cardinals. St. Louis scored eight runs while Niese was on the mound but only three were earned. Albert and company recorded 10 hits in just 4 2/3 innings.
Niese posted a 1-3 record in his last seven starts with a 4.43 ERA and a 1.40 WHIP.
This afternoon will be Niese’s 13th start outside of Citi Field. He is 4-3 with a complete game and a 3.36 ERA with a 1.41 WHIP.
The 23-year old southpaw is 0-1 in two starts against the Cubs with a 6.23 ERA and a 2.31 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Jon Niese
- Jeff Baker – 1-for-3
- Marlon Byrd – 2-for-3
- Xavier Nady – 1-for-3
- Aramis Ramirez – 0-for-5
- Alfonso Soriano – 2-for-5 with a double
- Geovany Soto – 1-for-4 with a double and a walk
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …