Spring Training Game Fourteen: Cubs (5-8) vs. White Sox (5-7-1)
Game Time – 2:05pm CST
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet (Sox), MLB Network – Radio: Cubs.com webcast
Location – Camelback Ranch, Glendale
Ryan Dempster (0-0, 2.57/0.86) vs. Mark Buehrle (0-1, 9.00/1.80)
Updated – 11:36am CST – According to multiple reports, the Cubs optioned John Gaub and Esmailin Caridad to Triple-A Iowa Friday morning. With Gaub and Caridad optioned out of big league camp, the Cubs Spring Training roster was reduced from 60 to 58 players.
It is the Cubs vs. the Sox for the first time in 2011 …
Ryan Dempster will make his third start of the spring. Dempster has been solid so far but has struggled against the White Sox over the course of his Cubs’ career. After throwing three and four innings in his first two starts, Dempster should be slated to pitch the first five innings of today’s game.
Jeff Baker will hit leadoff today with Mark Buehrle and the Cubs will use a designated hitter for the second time this spring … Luis Montanez will serve as Quade’s DH. Alfonso Soriano, Carlos Pena and Marlon Byrd will also return to the starting lineup this afternoon. Ryan Dempster has allowed two runs on five hits over his first two starts of the spring (seven innings) … but more importantly, Dempster has thrown strikes. One of the big keys for Dempster during the regular season is to maintain a 3:1 strikeout to walk ratio. Dempster has exceeded that rate so far this spring. In seven innings, Dempster has issued just one walk while striking out six.
Many have predicted an AL Central Division crown for the Chicago White Sox. The South Side has a very good offense and pitching staff, on paper, and just enough defense to reach one of their goals. The Sox have struggled this spring but figure to put out their best effort this afternoon against the Cubs.
Mark Buehrle will make his third start of the spring. The Sox lefty has allowed five runs on nine hits in five innings (one strikeout and no walks).
With Ryan Dempster and Mark Buehrle getting the start, today’s Cactus League game figures to move along at a regular season pace.
Cubs Lineup vs. White Sox – 3/11/11
Jeff Baker – 2B
Starlin Castro – SS
Marlon Byrd – CF
Geovany Soto – C
Tyler Colvin – RF
Alfonso Soriano – LF
Carlos Pena – 1B
Luis Montanez – DH
Marquez Smith – 3B
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …