Game Thirty-Nine: Cubs (17-21) vs. Reds (23-17)
Game Time – 6:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WCIU – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati
Carlos Zambrano (4-1, 4.35/1.22) vs. Homer Bailey (2-0, 0.69/0.77)
Weather permitting … following an unexpected day off Sunday the Cubs begin a very difficult seven-day, seven-game trip tonight in the Queen City. The Cubs play seven night games in three different cities over the next week. Following two in Cincinnati, the Cubs travel to Miami for two against the Marlins then end the week with the Cubs first trip to Fenway Park since the 1918 World Series.
Q’s squad will face a red-hot Cincinnati team in their first trip of the season to the Queen City. Dusty’s Reds are coming off a three-game sweep of the Cardinals and begin play tonight 1 1/2 games up in the central. The Reds took two of three from the Cubs last week at Wrigley … and that was without Scott Rolen. The Reds are a much different team with Rolen in the lineup because the veteran third baseman demands his teammates give 100% every day and to play the game the right way.
Mike Quade adjusted his pitching rotation in the wake of Sunday’s rainout. Carlos Zambrano and Matt Garza will face the Reds for the next two games. Ryan Dempster will open the series in Florida with Casey Coleman going in game two. Doug Davis will start the first game at Fenway Park Friday night.
Tonight it all begins with Carlos Zambrano … Carlos Zambrano is coming off a no decision against the Cardinals … in a game the Cubs gave away. Z pitched a lot better that his final line indicates. Z allowed four runs on eight hits with two walks and three strikeouts in seven innings. The Cubs defense gave the Cardinals at least two of the four runs they scored off Z … and a couple of hits as well. Defense, defense, defense.
Z has thrown the ball extremely well this season and has gone late into the game in his last two starts. Zambrano is 1-0 in his last two starts with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.07 WHIP.
Big Z is undefeated on the road this season (4-0 in four starts with a 4.21 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP) and will try to keep his road winning streak in tact tonight.
Z did not face the Reds in the series at Wrigley. Zambrano is 16-10 in 35 career games, 30 starts, against the Redlegs with a 3.06 ERA and a 1.26 WHIP … at Great American Ball Park, 9-2 in 14 starts, 13 games, with a 2.90 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP. Z was 1-0 in two games versus Joey Votto and company last season with a 5.63 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP.
Reds Career Numbers against Carlos Zambrano
- Jay Bruce – 3-for-13 with a home run and 3 walks
- Jonny Gomes – 1-for-1
- Ryan Hanigan – 2-for-4 with a double
- Ramon Hernandez – 2-for-12
- Fred Lewis – 1-for-3
- Brandon Phillips – 9-for-43 with 3 doubles, 2 home runs and 5 walks
- Edgar Renteria – 13-for-34 with a home run and 7 walks
- Scott Rolen – 8-for-45 with 3 doubles, 3 home runs and 3 walks
- Drew Stubbs – 2-for-5
- Joey Votto – 8-for-22 with 4 doubles and 2 walks
The Cubs will face a very confident Homer Bailey tonight. The hard-throwing Texan has been outstanding since coming off the DL (3-1 in 10 starts after the break last season with a 3.55 ERA and a 1.27 WHIP) and is finally pitching to the expectations he was drafted with back in 2004. Bailey has made only two starts, both against the Astros, and he dominated Houston.
Bailey is coming off a seven shutout innings in which he held Houston to five hits and o walks. In 13 innings this season, Bailey has struck out 12 and issued only one free pass.
The key to beating Homer Bailey is patience. Bailey will put himself into hitter’s counts if the Cubs can resist walking to the plate swinging.
Bailey is 1-2 in four career starts against the Cubs with a 7.65 ERA and a 2.10 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Homer Bailey
- Jeff Baker – 0-for-3
- Marlon Byrd – 1-for-2 with a home run
- Starlin Castro – 1-for-2 with a home run
- Tyler Colvin – 0-for-2
- Blake DeWitt – 2-for-3
- Kosuke Fukudome – 1-for-5
- Koyie Hill – 1-for-6
- Reed Johnson – 0-for-1
- Aramis Ramirez – 2-for-8 with a walk
- Alfonso Soriano – 3-for-7 with a double, a home run and a walk
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