Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Dodgers – 05/03/11

Game Twenty-Nine: Cubs (12-16) vs. Dodgers (15-15)
Game Time – 9:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 189
Location – Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles

Ryan Dempster (1-3, 9.58/1.87) vs. Chad Billingsley (2-1, 4.46/1.37)

Ryan Dempster turns 34 today … will he show up to the park tonight and put his horrible start behind him or will it be another ‘Bullpen Day‘ for the Chicago Cubs?

The Cubs have lost six of eight and eight of 11 and in order for Q’s squad to get back to .500 they will need Ryan Dempster to pitch to the back of his baseball card … and that must start tonight. Following his last outing, Dempster said he was glad April was over. The Cubs are 0-for May and they need Dempster to deliver a win tonight.

News and Notes
The Cubs received good news Monday concerning Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner. Both pitchers threw off a mound and Jim Hendry is hopeful both pitchers can return in two to three weeks.

The Cubs announced Monday that Doug Davis will make his first rehab start Thursday for the Daytona Cubs … and Todd Wellemeyer would take the hill for the I-Cubs Thursday. If all goes well for Davis, he will pitch for the I-Cubs then likely make his Cubs’ debut in the Giants series at Wrigley.

Jeff Baker is expected to be out of the lineup again tonight nursing his sore left shoulder. Mike Quade is hoping to have him back Wednesday when the Cubs face Ted Lilly.

Tonight it all begins with Ryan Dempster … and celebrating his birthday with a win.

Ryan Dempster is coming off the worst start of his big league career … and is stuck in the worst stretch of his career. Dempster lasted just 1/3 of an inning against the D’Backs last Thursday. Dempster could not throw strikes and when he did the ball left the park. Stephen Drew and company scored seven runs on four hits and four walks, plus a hit batter, on just 40 pitches. Dempster was all over the place and looked lost on the mound.

Dempster must give the Cubs innings tonight and keep his team in the game.

Of all the concerning stats that surrounds Dempster’s first six starts, the amount of home runs he’s serving up is the most alarming. In just 31 innings, nine of the 42 hits Dempster has allowed have left the park … and four of those have been hit in his last two innings of work (three by the Dodgers in last 1 2/3 on April 23 and the slam by Stephen Drew).

The Dodgers shelled Dempster during the series at Wrigley. After the Cubs put up a five-spot on Ted Lilly, Dempster starting throwing BP and surrendered seven runs on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings with three walks and three strikeouts … and three big home runs, the last three hits Dempster gave up.

Dempster is 7-3 in 23 career games, 13 starts, with a 2.81 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP … at Dodger Stadium 1-1 in nine games, three starts, with a 2.13 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP.

Dodgers Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster

  • Rod Barajas – 1-for-3 with a home run
  • Chad Billingsley – 0-for-4
  • Jamey Carroll – 2-for-6
  • Andre Ethier – 7-for-19 with 4 doubles, a home run and a walk
  • Tony Gwynn, Jr. – 2-for-6 with a double and a triple
  • Matt Kemp – 4-for-16 with a double, a home run and a walk
  • James Loney – 1-for-13
  • Jerry Sands – 0-for-3
  • Marcus Thames – 0-for-1
  • Juan Uribe – 4-for-12 with a double and a home run

Chad Billingsley will try to complete his two-game sweep of the Cubs tonight. Billingsley has given the Cubs problems since he entered the league and beat the Cubs two outings ago after another impressive outing.

Billingsley is coming off a no-decision against the Marlins in which he allowed four runs on five hits in six innings of work. Billingsley’s problem has always been consistency … and history is repeating itself so far this season.

Tonight will be Billingsley’s eighth career start against the Cubs … 4-3 in nine games, seven starts, with a 3.47 ERA and a 1.48 WHIP. The Cubs have not beaten Chad Billingsley since the 2009 season.

Cubs Career Numbers against Chad Billingsley

  • Jeff Baker – 2-for-3 with a double
  • Darwin Barney – 1-for-4
  • Marlon Byrd – 4-for-10 with a triple
  • Starlin Castro – 1-for-6 with a walk
  • Tyler Colvin – 0-for-3 with 3 walks
  • Ryan Dempster – 2-for-6 with a double
  • Blake DeWitt – 1-for-1
  • Kosuke Fukudome – 6-for-22 with 2 doubles, a home run and 2 walks
  • Koyie Hill – 2-for-10 with a home run and 2 walks
  • Carlos Pena – 0-for-2 with a walk
  • Aramis Ramirez – 5-for-16 with a double, a triple and a walk
  • Alfonso Soriano – 3-for-18 with a walk
  • Geovany Soto – 0-for-7 with a walk

Follow the CCO on Twitter: @TheCCO

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow." - Albert Einstein
Share on Fancred
  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Fukudome – RF
    Barney – 2B
    Castro – SS
    Ramirez – 3B
    Byrd – CF
    Pena – 1B
    Soriano – LF
    Soto – C
    Dempster – P

    • Aaron

      RE: Castro and byrd moving around in the lineup…….

      Nothing but rearranging chairs on the deck of the Titanic. No matter where they put them, the ship is still going to sink, and that’s PRECISELY what’s happening to this team.

      If they really want to affect change, they need to release Pena, bring up Ridling ($10 million is already a sunk cost, and it’s for 1 year, so it shouldn’t hurt that much. They add MLB minimum (pro-rated of course, missing April, at $400k for Ridling). They need to trade/release both Byrd and Fukudome (even though he’s hot right now), and bring up Campana and Jackson. They should be able to find a taker for Byrd, and I’d really only look at trading him, rather than releasing, because he’d still be a decent bench bat and 4th OF, but the time is now to bring up true lead-off options in Campana and Jackson, and let them run with it. Colvin could play 1B everyday, and if his bat didn’t come around, then Ridling could step in.

      The lineup could then be:

      Campana-CF
      Barney-2B
      Castro-SS
      ARAM-3B
      Colvin-1B
      Soriano-LF
      Jackson-RF
      Soto-C

      In that case, Castro, Campana, and Jackson could all be interchangeable at the top of the lineup, so whomever is getting the job done, is the guy you’d go with.

      I know all my ideas might seem outrageous to some, and I believe that’s mostly due to the fact that Hendry has NEVER been creative like this, rather than the ideas being illogical in the first place. The ideas make an incredible amount of sense, as I feel something needs to be done, and it needs to be done sooner rather than later.

      • Kojak Osborne Jr.

        This is the Cubs we are talking about this will never happen unless Jim Hendry is gone.

      • Matt

        If Jackson were to be called up, there’s no way they would put him in right!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Darwin Barney was named NL Rookie of the Month for April … And Starlin Castro will be on the cover of SI that hits newsstands Wednesday.

    • Kojak Osborne Jr.

      The only two positives on this team right now except the Shark and Marmol.

    • paulcatanese

      Congratulations to both, they have earned it.

  • GaryLeeT

    “It’s tough losing Cashner and Wells right away,” Hendry said. “Rotation issues are always a team’s biggest concern when they get out of the gate so good. We thought the bottom end of our rotation was one of our strengths, and they looked to prove that right away.”

    I would say they lost the top of their rotation, not the bottom.

  • Tom U

    Consider this food for thought:

    If the Cubs are looking for someone other the Russell to start in the fifth starter spot, and Doug Davis shows he’s not ready, now may be the time to go with Austin Bibens-Dirx.

    Bibens-Dirx pitched 4.1 innings in relief in Iowa’s 9-3 loss today, Since a disastrous start on April 13, he has made four appearances (1 start) and pitched 15 innings. His ERA over that time is 1.22 with 14 strikeouts against 6 walks. Opponents have been hitting .176 against him during that period.

    The next time the fifth starter would come up would be during the Giants series later next week. Iowa could get Bibens-Dirx back in the rotation in order for one of his next starts to sync-up with that time frame.

    • cubtex

      I was thinking of him as well Tom. I would rather see Ramon Ortiz and Bibens-Dirx instead of throwing Casey Coeman and Russell out there. They can’t do any worse than those 2. Coleman and Russell are killing the bullpen. Neither can get past the 5th.

  • Mitch#10HOF

    If I were in charge of the lineup this is how I would do it.

    1st Alfonso Soriano
    Darwin Barney
    Geovany Soto
    Starlin Castro
    Carlos Pena
    Pitcher
    Fuku/Colvin
    Byrd
    Rameriz

    1st probaly basehit
    2nd advance base runner
    3rd probaly out
    And start over again

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_R65T7II7FYX7HGQW2XLHDDWJRQ Agustin

      I would try Geo on the 3 spot or 5th spot…but soriano in the leadoff is oooooollllllllldddd!

      • Mitch#10HOF

        It seems the only place he can hit a homerun is leadoff though

  • cubtex

    Just heard Russell taken out of rotation. Thank god!

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Just a reminder, I pass on news quicker through twitter than on the site.

  • Baron_S

    If you’re looking for a 3-4 inning stop-gap starter —

    theres a guy thats setting up Marmol that was pretty good for a while there — just sayin!

    • paulcatanese

      I think you are talking about Wood or Marshall,love to see either start if they would stretch out.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    According to multiple reports, Russell is out of the rotation

    • cubtex

      Any word on who will take his place yet?

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        I am hearing Doug Davis. Cubs will not need a fifth starter until the Giants series. Davis is starting Thursday for Daytona, he will then go to Iowa and if all goes according to their plan, Davis will make his Cubs debut during the Giants series.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_R65T7II7FYX7HGQW2XLHDDWJRQ Agustin

      Its a shame, he was a stud……….

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_R65T7II7FYX7HGQW2XLHDDWJRQ Agustin

    Dempster has not served a Home run yet tonight!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    According to WGN Radio, Randy Wells and Andrew Cashner will throw sim games soon as the next step in their rehab. Cubs are hopeful both pitchers will return by the third week in May.

  • Cheryl

    Hendry fiddles while the cubs burn. I agree it would be best to release someone, but Ramirez is my choice. He’s getting no where. Pena may start to come out of his slump. But, if Riding can be brought up it would give him some experience. Again, send down DeWitt or release him. Feel sorry for Russell, he wasn’t met for the role that they placed him in.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Good at bat for Barney after Kosuke grounded out on the first pitch. Castro was robbed of a hit …

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    A 4-pitch walk for Dempster to start the game

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ball six …

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ball seven

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ball eight

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    I agree with Brenly, gotta get someone up

  • GaryLeeT

    There must be some diagnosis that can put Dempster on the DL. Shorthanded or not, there are Solar Bears that can pitch better than Dempster is right now.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    At least Dempster got out of the first inning … yes, I’m searching for a positive.

  • cubtex

    Dempster just doesn’t have any command this year. He is throwing very hittable strikes…..when he throws strikes

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Nice 1-2-3 2nd inning for Dempster

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Another bad call in the Dodgers favor by this umpiring crew

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YO4BT5UAVFHQIS4OZ3SJSBNRCU Michael

    If Ramirez runs hard out of the box that call would never have to be made!

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Agreed … he never has and never will

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_YO4BT5UAVFHQIS4OZ3SJSBNRCU Michael

        I know… it drives me nuts!

        • Baron_S

          A-Ram might be more shot than D.Lee is in 2011. At least D.Lee will play outstanding defense for you all the time.

          Because A-Ram always had a sweeter swing, people cut him more slack now compared to the skewering they gave Derrek. He is about as worthless today.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Uribe went around …

  • GaryLeeT

    Yet another blown call on the Uribe swing. It’s now officially a conspiracy.

  • John_CC

    Whoa…I’m never surprised to see the row of donuts across the Cubs half of the board by the time I can finally get to the game…but I was completely surprised to see all the zeros and just 3 hits thru 5 innings for Dempster.

    Why, in all the lineup flipping, does Soriano only move between 5 and 7? He is the only guy hitting right now. It doesn’t make any sense. Yet Byrd continues to own the heart of the order. I just don’t get it.

  • GaryLeeT

    11 RBIs from the clean-up position in over a month of games? Geez Ramy, I would hate to see what your output would have been if you weren’t playing for a 16 million dollar team option for next year.

  • paulcatanese

    Pena #1

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Pena with his first dinger

  • paulcatanese

    Dempster has pitched well tonight, but it’s now the last of the seventh Quade should have someone up now. Let him leave on a positive note. He’s out there, pitches starting to get up. Time to think about a change.

  • paulcatanese

    Good for him,he got through it, on guts and fumes.

  • studio179

    Finally, a good outing by Dempster. It looked questionable at times, but in the end, 7 IP / 1run is a nice job.

  • Aaron

    Dempster’s best start by FAR….and for some reason, I have a gut feeling the Cubs still lose.

    “Let’s get ‘em tomorrow”…”Wait ’til next year”…”Year One”…..blah blah blah….we’ve heard it all.

    Hopefully everyone has seen by now that not a damn thing has changed. The Cubs keep recycling the same, worn out ideas, and keep failing.

    If everyone recalls, in 2003, the Cubs were “too right-handed”, which precipitated their move to get Todd Walker in 2004, which started a bizarre 2B situation where Grudz, a key piece to the 2003 success was benched a lot. The group never quite came together, despite increased production from Lee at 1B and Patterson improving upon his 2003 stats.

    Almost the exact same scenario played out after the 2008 season, and ended in disaster. The Cubs never learn from their mistakes, and they also don’t understand what made them successful in playoff seasons either.

    It’s like reliving a nightmare every single season. It’s like watching a scary movie where the girl hears a sound upstairs, and rather than get out of the house and call 911, she goes up alone, and gets annihilated.

    Similarly, we all know the warning signs with the Cubs. Poor defense. Aging, overpaid, underperforming veterans. Poor front end relief. Lack of speed. No true lead-off hitter.

    This team is so lethargic, it’s blatantly obvious, and the only way to solve that problem is blowing it up and start the youth movement. Why Hendry will never understand that is beyond me…but it is what it is.

    …..on the bright side of things. Pena’s 1st home run comes on the 3rd day of the second month. $10 million just doesn’t go as far as it used to.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Excellent outing for Ryan Dempster

    • carmelo

      I agree—-it all begins with starting pitching so it’s good to see Dempster performance tonight—-

  • Baron_S

    I don’t get it..

    Fuk is starting to tail off

    Castro hits .436 batting leadoff.
    He is hitting .169 in 8 games at the 3 position

    WTF are people stupid?

    • Aaron

      Yes, they are….which is why Hendry even admitted himself that he doesn’t pay much attention to stats….LOL

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Excellent stop by Barney

  • paulcatanese

    Johnson,stupid,stupid,stupid.

  • Baron_S

    ah Kerry Wood!! what a talent… I’d keep him on the roster just to soothe the sentiments of aggravated Cubs fans..

    l

  • John_CC

    posting on the wrong thread…just commenting on how bad Broxton is…are they gonna pull him? Soriano can win this.

    • John_CC

      wow. He is cooked. Did Broxton just give up his job? He’s afraid of Soriano.

  • paulcatanese

    Boy,what a stall by the Dodgers. I thought there was a rule on time between pitches. Mattingly was right , there was fear in the eyes of Broxton,he definatly did not want to throw the ball.

    • John_CC

      G’d evening, Paul. I think all the Central time zoners are in bed. I should be too, but this is the most exciting game of the year….SOTO!!!!

      Anytime the Cubs can beat the Dodgers, I am happy!

  • studio179

    Soto! Splits the gap!

  • Baron_S

    YESSS!!!!!!!!!!! GEO!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Soto with a big 2-out, 2-run double

  • Aaron

    love me some crow….hopefully they can close this one out

  • studio179

    Did I see a DeWitt base hit, run scored sighting? Wow.

  • Dorasaga

    This will be Kerry Wood’s 78th career Win as a Cubs.

  • Baron_S

    nice!!

    Lets get tomorrow — then go 6-3 on the homestand to get over .500

    cheers!

  • John_CC

    Always a good night when the Cubs beat the Dodgers.

    Goodnight, fellas!

    • Dorasaga

      Nighty nigh~

  • paulcatanese

    Good ,good win. All the way around,Type your comment here.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs beat the Dodgers 4-1 Tuesday night. Geovany Soto w/ 2out, 2-run 2B in 9th; Ryan Dempster’s line: 1R, 6H, 5K, 2BB in 7IP; Carlos Pena 1st HR