Spring Training Game Fifteen: Cubs (ss) (6-8) vs. Reds (ss) (8-5-1)
Game Time – 2:05pm CST
Coverage – TV: None – Radio: 720 WGN
Location – HoHokam Park, Mesa
Carlos Silva (0-1, 29.70/4.20) vs. Homer Bailey (0-1, 7.71/1.50)
Spring Training Game Sixteen: Cubs (ss) (6-8) vs. Reds (ss) (8-5-1)
Game Time – 3:05pm CST
Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: None
Location – Cashman Field, Las Vegas
James Russell (0-0, 10.80/2.20) vs. Mike Leake (0-0, 9.00/2.40)
Q’s crew has a big weekend ahead of them. Half of the remaining 58 players in big league camp will be in Las Vegas facing the Reds and Dodgers while the other half stays behind in Mesa to play the Reds and Diamondbacks.
Mike Quade will lead the squad in Las Vegas and Pat Listach will call the shots in Mesa.
For the seventh consecutive spring, the Cubs will participate in the annual ‘Big League Weekend‘ at Cashman Field in Las Vegas. The Cubs face the Reds this afternoon and the Dodgers on Sunday. WGN TV will televise both games from Sin City.
Pat Hughes and Keith Moreland will broadcast the other game this afternoon from Mesa.
Carlos Silva gets the start against the Reds and both Silva and the Cubs need for him to put together a good start.
Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner have moved ahead of Silva in the battle for the last two spots in the rotation. The Tribune reported Thursday night that Wells is a lock to make the rotation out of camp, so that leaves just one spot. If nothing else, the Cubs need Silva to pitch well this afternoon to up whatever value he still might have to another team.
The Cubs won one and lost one in their first split squad action of the spring. After today, the Cubs have two more split squad games … Sunday, March 13 and Tuesday, March 15.
Carlos Silva vs. Homer Bailey in Mesa
To say Carlos Silva has been horrible would be an understatement. Dugout scuffle aside, Silva has put together two very bad outings. Silva’s command is off and everything is up right now.
Silva has given up 14 runs, 11 earned, on 13 hits with a walk and a hit batsman in 3 1/3 innings. Silva has yet to strikeout a batter … and really hasn’t missed too many bats.
After declaring himself one of the Cubs five starters before the spring games began, Carlos Silva has done everything but prove he deserves to be in Q’s rotation. Silva said he’s under pressure to earn a spot in the rotation after his last start. At this point, the Cubs just need him to put together a solid spring outing … and it will not be easy against the Reds’ offense.
Homer Bailey is out of minor league options and is pitching for a spot in Dusty Baker’s rotation this spring. Bailey has shown flashes of the pitcher the Reds would like him to be, but his problem has been throwing strikes on a consistent basis. Bailey was once one of the top pitching prospects in the game and the Reds are still hoping he can fulfill the promise.
Bailey has struggled in his first two starts of the spring … four runs on seven hits with three strikeouts and no walks in 4 2/3 innings.
Brandon Phillips and Jay Bruce are expected to be in Chris Speier’s starting lineup this afternoon. Chris Speier, the Reds’ bench coach, will call the shots in Mesa.
Spring Training Game Sixteen: Cubs vs. Reds
James Russell vs. Mike Leake in Las Vegas
The Cubs would like to see James Russell in the rotation when the season begins, but at this point Russell appears destined for the I-Cubs rotation. Russell will make his first start of the spring (third appearance) and has struggled with his command so far.
Russell has allowed seven runs, six earned, on 11 hits without a walk and four strikeouts in five innings.
Mike Leake is not having a good spring and is coming off a bad outing. Leake pitched in relief and gave up four runs on nine hits in three innings. Leake has allowed five runs, all earned, on 11 hits in five innings with a walk and a strikeout. Leake was one of the biggest stories of the spring a year ago but is now battling for a spot in the Reds Opening Day rotation.
James Russell will face two of the biggest Cub killers in the league this afternoon. Both Joey Votto and Drew Stubbs have lit up Cubs’ pitching. Maybe with Mark Riggins at the helm of the staff, the Cubs will change their approach against Votto and Stubbs. It is past time for both of them to be backed off the plate by a pitcher wearing a Cubs’ uniform.
The Reds beat up the Cubs last Sunday in Goodyear (10-0), maybe the Cubs can get a win or two this afternoon.
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …