Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Cardinals – 06/03/11

Game Fifty-Five: Cubs (23-31) vs. Cardinals (33-25)
Game Time – 7:15pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV, MLB Network – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 89
Location – Busch Stadium, St. Louis

Ryan Dempster (4-4, 6.00/1.49) vs. Jaime Garcia (5-1, 3.28/1.19)

After a much-needed day off, the Cubs begin a very difficult stretch of 38 games in 38 days with the first of three against the St. Louis Cardinals. The Cubs play 10 straight on the road before returning to Wrigley. Following the weekend in St. Louis, the Cubs travel to Cincinnati for three then to Philly for a four-game series. The Cubs have only one more day off before the All-Star break (June 23) and their next 17 games are against teams with winning records (Cardinals, Reds, Phillies, Brewers, Yankees).

While just about everything is going wrong for the Cubs right now, Tony LaRussa’s team is in first place and have played extremely well through all of their adversity. The Cardinals placed Matt Holliday on the DL on Thursday night with a left quad strain.

Aramis Ramirez is not expected to play tonight after taking one for the team Wednesday and receiving stitches in his lip. Reports have suggested D.J. LeMahieu could get his first big league start tonight.

Mike Quade shifted his rotation slightly and will send Ryan Dempster, Randy Wells and Carlos Zambrano to the hill this weekend … and LaRussa will go with Jamie Garcia, Kyle Lohse and Chris Carpenter. With the way the offense struggled during the nine-game homestand (3-6), unless something changes the next three games figure to be just as frustrating for the Cubs.

The Redbirds took two of three from the Cubs at Wrigley last month (May 10-May 12) and tonight it all begins with Ryan Dempster

Ryan Dempster has posted a win in his last three decisions … but more importantly, his team is 4-0 in his last four starts. Dempster is coming off a solid outing against the Mighty Pirates. Dempster allowed two runs, both in the first inning, on four hits in six innings. Dempster walked three and struck out five … one of the few times Dempster has posted less than a 3:1 strikeout to walk ratio and still won a game.

Dempster finished May with a 3-1 record in six starts with a 3.08 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP … in his last two starts, 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP.

Tonight will be Dempster’s sixth road start of the season. He is 1-1 in the first five with an 8.37 ERA and a 1.86 WHIP. Dempster last road win came back on April 11 in Houston.

Dempster missed the Cardinals when they were at Wrigley (May 10 – May 12) and is 7-7 in 44 career games, 18 starts, with a 4.43 ERA and a 1.51 WHIP … at the new Busch Stadium, 2-1 in 12 games, five starts, with a 3.12 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP.

Cardinals Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster

  • Lance Berkman – 14-for-55 with a double, 4 home runs and 14 walks
  • Allen Craig – 0-for-3
  • Jon Jay – 1-for-9 with a triple
  • Mark McGwire – 2-for-9 with 2 home runs and 5 walks
  • Yadier Molina – 8-for-29 with a double and 4 walks
  • Albert Pujols – 15-for-47 with 2 doubles, 6 home runs and 10 walks
  • Colby Rasmus – 1-for-8 with a double and a walk
  • Skip Schumaker – 18-for-40 with 3 doubles and a walk

Jamie Garcia is coming off the worst outing of his career. The Rockies pounded the Cardinals’ southpaw to the tune of 12 runs, 11 earned, on 11 hits with four walks and six strikeouts in just 3 1/3 innings. Garcia picked up his first loss of the season … and it was just the fourth time the Redbirds lost a game that Garcia started (7-4).

Garcia finished May with a 2-1 record in six starts with a 4.23 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP after a spectacular April (3-0 in five starts with a 2.08 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP). One of Garcia’s two wins last month came against the Cubs back on May 12 at Wrigley. Garcia held the Cubs to one run on nine hits in seven innings. The Cubs struck out four times and walked just once.

Jamie Garcia is 1-1 in three career games, two starts, against the Cubs with a 1.93 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Jamie Garcia

  • Darwin Barney – 1-for-7
  • Starlin Castro – 1-for-4 with a double
  • Tyler Colvin – 0-for-2
  • Kosuke Fukudome – 0-for-1
  • Carlos Pena – 0-for-2 with a walk
  • Aramis Ramirez – 2-for-7 with a double
  • Geovany Soto – 2-for-2

Follow the CCO on Twitter: @TheCCO

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of it to anyone else." - Charles Dickens
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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From the Tribune: Aramis got 7 stitches in lip, face still swollen. Will try to hit off a T tonight and is day-to-day

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Fukudome – RF
    Barney – 2B
    Castro – SS
    Soto – C
    Pena – 1B
    Montanez – LF
    Colvin – CF
    LeMahieu – 3B
    Dempster – P

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

     The Chiefs have six All-Stars:

    Pierre LePage, Greg Rohan, Matt Szczur, Micah Gibbs, Richard Jones & Austin Kirk! http://bit.ly/l0j59A

    • Tom U

      Was saving that for Monday’s report. Here are Daytona’s All-Stars:

      Florida State League announced that Daytona Cubs 1B Justin Bour, SS
      Junior Lake, LF Evan Crawford, closer Frank Bautista and SP Aaron Kurcz have been selected to be 2011 Florida State League All-Stars.

      http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110602&content_id=19938114&vkey=news_t450&fext=.jsp&sid=t450

      • Dorasaga

        Thanks for breezing through this muddy 38 days ahead… Do you know if any of these minor league games will be broadcasted on the internet? I recall mlb.tv showed a Fall League showcase game for free last year…

        • Tom U

          I don’t know about the All-Star Games on the internet, but Daytona’s radio will broadcast FSL All-Star Game.

    • studio179

      It would be fun watching Matt Szczur and Tony Campana in a race around the bases just for giggles.

      • Tom U

        As fast as they are, Evan Crawford may be even faster.

  • studio179

    The day before Ram got hurt I posted he was due to go on the DL. He almost did. I kind of feel bad. Next time, I better not post something so negative.

    Although, I do not think his absence will be noticed.

    Cubs-Cards series are always tough no matter how the other is doing in the standings. Let’s hope the Cubs play better ball. Tough road trip now.  

    • paulcatanese

      I know what you mean,but remember he has been on the DL a few times before this happened. This was a total coincidence but  Onlywas predictable,just as you or I would say Soto was due for the DL or D.Lee as he is right now.

      I am not a supporter of Aram and have not been since his refusal to move to first base. But in all honesty I was amazed that he went to the 5 spot in the lineup and actually strted to hit the ball. Never thought that would happen.
      When he comes back I would hope he stays there as he seems suited for that spot.

      That would be even better for the Cubs as his trade value could go up. I would go one step further and say I should eat crow on this one as I have rapped him daily for a long time. I would have preferred that he was replaced with no injury involved.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    That was a quick 1-2-3 first inning, Garcia threw only 9 pitches

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    And Dempster puts ‘em in a big hole.

    • GaryLeeT

      Can’t kick off a Dempster start without the opposition putting up a crooked number in the first. Now, like with most games, the Cub’s hitters feel like they need to swing early, and often to compensate for the worst starting pitching in the Majors. We’ve seen this movie way too many times

  • Brentcarmona

    Wow dempster. Whem we need him he is not there. Well not all the time. it really sticks out when he craps the bed in big spots.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    26 pitches for Dempster in the first. Another home run and more first inning runs … that was run numbers 16, 17 and 18 in the first inning for Dempster this season.

  • Brentcarmona

    Just lifeless so far at the plate through two. Should I watch softball?

  • endy

    This is gonna get ugly. Please get failed vets out of the lineup. Dempster is terrible.

    Pena, lou montanez, fukudome? Why bother

  • Aaron

    Today is the day…I’m pretty sure of it

  • EqDoc

    Really good chance we see a no-hitter tonight…

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Garcia has struck out 4 of the first 7 batters he faced … and is about to retire 9 up 9 down

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Garcia 1-2-3 in the third on 7 pitches, three innings and 28 pitches.

    • Aaron

      I’m almost 100% positive we’ll see a no-hitter tonight. Neil, you and I have commented before on this, especially last year, and a few times this year….But I haven’t seen a pitcher dominate the Cubs like tonight. It’s not even close. They look pathetic up there, and I actually hope it happens, believe it or not, and the reason I feel that way is…..

      Ricketts might finally get a clue and clean house at that point after being embarrassed that badly. He might finally say enough is enough, and realize that it’s simply not possibly to carry on like this. And I would assume that attendance will be even worse at Wrigley if they’re no-hit tonight….at least this fan hopes it is.

      Anyway, if you know me, you understand that this declaration does NOT mean I want this to happen, but that I am being realistic here. 

      NOBODY has made solid contact, with Fukudome, Soto, Colvin, and Montanez all striking out in ugly fashion with Fukudome, Colvin, and Montanez all striking out on 3 straight pitches. 

      I just don’t see anyway this team gets a hit unless it’s someone like LeMahieu that has a lucky hit.

      • GaryLeeT

        If ownership didn’t take action after getting swept at home by the Astros, then being no hit won’t do it either. Ricketts has made it perfectly clear, there is no possible low point that will prompt a managerial, or front office change this season.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Perfect after 4 on 40 pitches

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Brett
    Jackson hit a 2-run homer and its now 3-2 Stars in the 5th.

    • Aaron

      Unfortunately Daytona got spanked, and Cabrera is getting hit around in AAA tonight.

      The poor pitching at Iowa, the crumbling pitching now at AA due to Whitenack’s TJ surgery and McNutt’s injury the other night, will likely mean the Cubs will focus primarily on pitching in this June’s draft, which is unfortunate, because there are a lot of impact bats to be had early on, while this year is a pitching deep draft to begin with.

      And with guys like Dolis (who was doing very well as a starter btw) and Carpenter being switched to the pen, their pitching is thin to begin with….

      But then combine that with injuries to Jay Jackson and Cashner (both shoulders), and you can see exactly why the Cubs will be focusing on pitching in the draft.

      The only guys left at this point that are having above average seasons are: 
      Struck 6-2, 3.21 ERA in high-A and AA
      Kurcz 3-1, 3.24 ERA in high-A
      Lorick 4-1, 3.75 ERA in high-A
      *others in high-A are Rhee 1-1, 3.49 ERA (8 games, 4 starts) and Rosscup, who is currently injured at 3-0, 2.83 ERA
      Beeler 1-1, 2.08 ERA, low-A
      Kirk 3-2, 2.04 ERA, low-A
      Hicks 1-2, 2.33 ERA, low-A
      Greathouse 3-3, 3.53 ERA, low-A

      I would think out of that group, only Kurcz and Struck would have a shot at the 25-man roster next year. Kirk might have an outside shot if he continues his success and is moved up to Daytona before long, but in order to be considered a contender, almost all pitchers must be at AA first, and Kurcz will likely get bumped up there if and when they promote Kirk to Daytona. 

      I’ve seen the Cubs linked to college arms like:
      Jungman
      Gray
      Bauer
      Barnes
      Meyer

      and high school arms such as:
      Bundy
      Guerreri
      Bradley

      Given recent needs, it is doubtful the Cubs will go with a high school arm that will require 2-3 years development in the minors, just like Kirk is right now. Therefore, they’ll probably see if one of the college arms I just listed is available, and go with the most polished one. Since Gray and Jungman project at relievers, it’s doubtful they’ll draft them, and Meyer has control issues, so it’ll be between Barnes and Bauer in my opinion, and if they’re both taken, they’ll likely draft a bat, and take their chances with arms later in the draft (which I think is smart to begin with given the rash of injuries to pitchers drafted early in recent years)

      • Aaron

        I have read reports that the Cubs are super high on Springer, and if they take him that high in the draft, Ricketts should NOT hesitate to fire Hendry and lose the scouting department, because the scouting reports on Springer have him pegged as a 4th OF at best with a “bottomless floor”, because of huge holes in his swing, and making matters worse is the fact they say he could be out of baseball in a few years without reaching AA due to his swing. 

        A much better option for them if they want a safe college bat would be CJ Kron, or Mahtook.

        But….given his track record, I think it’ll be Springer, as his scouting report was eerily similar to Tyler Colvin…just FYI….EERILY SIMILAR!!!!!!!!!! The scouting reports said almost the exact same thing about Colvin’s ceiling and floor, and plate discipline.

        Will the Cubs learn?

        Have they ever learned under Hendry?

        • Cheryl

          But this is supposed to be a deep draft. They could still go with Bubba if he’s available and then concentrate on pitching for many other picks.

  • Jim_Tinley_Park

    To prove how crappy this team is we are (Me included) more concerned about our minor league games than we are about the MLB team.

    • Dorasaga

      While I’m more glee to see Prince Albert knocks one dinger for my fantasy team, than to listen another Quade post-game babbling, Ah, the Way of Cubs Think is a broken record for years. The lullaby started with a 2009 hit-song, “Whaddya wan’ me to do?,” featuring the rapper Piniella, who was inspired from the lineage since 1945, and drags on…

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs got a hit … and a run!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    103 pitches for Dempster in 4 2/3 innings

  • paulcatanese

    Has anyone taken the offer by Len or Bob to sign on the internet to manage along with Quade,or am I mis-interpeting what they are saying. I would love to do that.

    Watching the game and the picture was lost and I missed the first hit by the Cubs.
    Understand when the picture came back on it was a double by Montenez and he drove in a run, and I thought for sure they were going to be no-hit tonight

    Prett hard for Cub hitters to try and work the count thru the first four when all the pitches thrown happen to be strikes.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ryan Dempster allowed six runs on eight hits (2 HR) in 5 innings (WP, 3BB,
    5Ks). Dempster threw 109 pitches, 67 for strikes.

  • Ripsnorter1

    If Astros win tonight (they play late), don’t be alarmed if you are awakened with a loud thud. That will only be the Cubs falling into last place in the Central Division and NL.

  • Tom U

    Sorry to be a proud father, but I just got back from my daughter’s softball game. Her line:

    1-for1, 3 walks, 8 stolen bases (including 2 steals of home), 4 runs scored, RBI

    as she helped lead her team to a 13-4 victory.

    • paulcatanese

      Hey! Hey!

      Nice to hear about success,great game for her.

  • Tom U

    Sorry to be a proud father, but i just got back from my daughter’s softball game.
    Her Line:

    1-for-1, 3 walks, 8 stolen bases (including 2 steals of home), 4 runs scored, RBI

    as she helped lead her team to a 13-4 victory!

    • Ripsnorter1

      Don’t let her sign with the Cubs. They ruin every prospect they get.

      • Tom U

        Thanks, and sorry for the double post.

        • JimBo_C

          Tom,
          My daughter plays too in the U14 age group. What age is yours?

          • Tom U

            Same, 13 years old,

        • studio179

          No biggie. I ‘liked’ the double posts. It is positive.  

        • paulcatanese

          Dont worry about it Tom, a night like that,she deserves a couble post.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Montenez has the only Cubs’ hit. What I can’t figure is why he is even in the lineup–any what’s he doing in the MLs? Why isn’t Blake DeWitt playing? I don’t get it. Isn’t Quade running this ship? 

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Dallas Beeler has been promoted to Double-A Tennessee

    • Aaron

      hmmmmmmm….someone has to get released then. There’s no way Rusin or Raley will be promoted to AAA, and they certainly won’t be released…..so unless they promote Dolis to AAA, or McNutt goes on the DL….I don’t know who’s off the roster then. Struck already replaced Whitenack, didn’t he? Or maybe it was Cabrera?

      • Tom U

        Struck replaced Whitenack, Coello replaced Cabrera. Hung-Wen Chen was loaned to a team in the Mexican League. Beeler will probably replace him.

        • Aaron

          Their decision-making is bizarre. I’m not saying that Chen was a great pitcher or anything, but he was a swing-man, and pretty decent. The Cubs need all the pitching they can get, NOT loaning them to other leagues.

          • Ripsnorter1

            Aaron,

            Are you crazy? When we can sign Davis, Lopez–shoot, even Carlos Silva–why bother with Chen? And I heard last week that Jim Clueless has been talking to Roger Clemens and Andy Petitte and Rick Sutcliffe. 

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Tom, thank you for answering Aaron … and you should be a proud father.

          • Tom U

            Thanks, I told her she just hit the big time … Aaron liked her game line!

          • Aaron

            Indeed, I did like the game line. She’s fast.

          • Tom U

            She’s also a district sprint and high jump champion

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Aaron, McNutt’s injury is to his ribs … as you probably know. I was listening to the game yesterday. They tried to take him out and he would not leave. He lost all command and they finally lifted him after two innings and I think it was 43 pitches. Have not heard about him going on the DL.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I was against the Cubs dealing Bill Madlock (batting champion 2 years in a row) for a used up and old Bobby Murcer and a utility player named Steve Ontiveras. But the Cubs did it. Bill Madlock went on to win 2 more batting titles, and play another 12 years. Murcer and Ontiveras had one year with the Cubs, and then washed out. Bad trade for us. Cubs’ brass sold it as “we got two starters for one.” More stupid talk from the stupid think tank that is Cubs’ management.

    And now we want to deal Marmol away. No doubt we’ll garner in some trash to take his place, and Marmol will continue to succeed for years to come. Kinda like dealing away Lee Smith for–are you ready for this?–AL NIPPER and Calvin Schraldi! AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
    You ought to have heard the dingfods who traded for Al Nipper. “He’ll pitch a lot of innings for us.”  AAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHHA! Old Al Nipper had an ERA of 5.43 and 5.38 his last two years at Boston, with a WHIP of 1.483! The Cubs got a whopping 80 IP out of him!  AHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    So I say, why not deal Marmol for nothing? Every time Jim Clueless makes a trade, we lose. SO let’s deal Senior Nasty TONIGHT!  Hurry while we still have a chance to be in last place tonight.

    • Aaron

      Rip,

      Count me as one of the guys that said this offseason that there’s NO way the Cubs should trade Marmol, and I cited similar reasons just as you did…that it’d be difficult for them to replace him, as he’s one of the best closers the Cubs have had in a long time, and shutdown closers are hard to come by.

      But face the facts…..Marmol, Marshall, and Garza are the ONLY players the Cubs could trade right now that would command multiple prospects. Castro might be able to command a decent return, but not multiple top prospects like those pitchers could net the Cubs.

      And couple that with the fact that Marmol’s velocity has been routinely around 90-93 mph on his fastball, an increased WHIP rate, related mostly to an increased hits allowed, and you have a recipe for disaster. Marmol’s slider was an above average weapon for him, but it was often times set-up by an above average fastball. Now, with the reduced velocity overall, you’re seeing his slider hang a bit flat, and as evidenced by the other night, he is VERY hittable. He’s NOT getting as many swings and misses as he in years past. 

      Does this mean he’ll never get his mojo back? Absolutely NOT! But you have to admit, something is wrong with him, and I mentioned this in Spring Training too, that I thought something was wrong.

      • Kevinwickit

        Let face facts, The Cubs have to rebuild. They don’t have a lot of trading piece, Garza is one of those pieces. Garza will be a FA after the 2013 season. The 2012 season will be a bust, we have more then Just 1B to fill, we will have 3B and RF also. I am not convinced Colvin is the answer in RF. Not to mention we still have Sorina in LF.

        It willl take at least 3 to 4 years to rebuild this team. So, If we trade Garza to let’s say the RANGERS. And we can get back 3 to 4 good prospect along with a guy like Mitch Moreland. I say do it.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Just this question for you Kevin: 

          Name a decent trade for prospects that Jim Clueless has made.

          DeRosa trade? We got skunked.

          Gorzelanny trade? We got skunked again. 

          And how does he draft? Pretty good at drafting players? I don’t think so.

          Therefore I have no confidence that he could acquire any value for Marmol, for Castro, for Garza. You’d just be throwing Lee Smith, Bruce Sutter, Bill Madlock, Dennis Eckersley and others away for nothing. WE’ve done that before, so why do it again?

          • Cheryl

            If someone else was in charge of the trades there would be more hope. Yes, I agree, trade Marmol. He’s been inconsistent. How many games has he blown saves on – two for Garza, one for Z, there may be more. What we need are prospects that are major league ready and blocked by veterans on other teams. There must be some good ones. The one good thing about being in last place is that you will get the top of the line draft choice next year, if that’s any consolation. I agree with you on most of your postings Rip, but I think Kevinwickit is right. The cubs are bad this year and aren’t likely to be a whole lot better in 2012 unless there are major changes.

    • studio179

      Bobby Murcer…ha-ha! Seriously, he use to sit in his rocking chair in the clubhouse. A real media darling, too.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Glad to see Lopez in the game. This might get Pujols started this year. 

  • Ripsnorter1

    Pittsburgh just beat the Phils in 12 innings, 2-1. Dan Moskos first ML win.

    • studio179

      Good for the Buccos.

    • paulcatanese

      Tell me somthing Rip, is there any place Lower than last place as I am sure the Cubs will find it.

      And the only thing good about this year is we could get great odds in Vegas
      on the Cubs winning it all.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Barney needs a few days off. He never walks to begin with, but now he’s popping out and hitting fly balls instead of line drives. It’s indicative of a tired bat. 

    • Aaron

      I said this several days ago.

      Why can’t the Cubs see what is clear to EVERYBODY. Clearly Castro and Barney need some time off. They’ve pretty much played the whole year, because they were the only guys hitting. But now they’re not, and they look lethargic….ESPECIALLY Castro. It’s time to get them some days off, get LeMahieu a few starts at both spots, and Quade’s darling, DeWitt, a few starts at 2B.

      • diehardcubfan

        Aaron remember DeWitt now plays left.  I would not be surprised to see DeWitt back in LF tomorrow.  Better yet they will probably play DeWitt at 3rd because DJ did not have a good night.  That would keep with Quade’s usual pattern.

    • diehardcubfan

      It is incredible that the rest of us can recognize that but Quade does not.  Nothing surprises me anymore.

      Both Barney and Castro need a break and not be run ragged.  Let us just hope the slump is just temporary.

  • studio179

    Another loss. So much for hoping the Cubs kick it up some.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost to Cardinals 6-1 Friday night. Ryan Dempster’s line:
    6R, 8H (2 HR), WP, 3BB, 5Ks in 5 IP (109 pitches). Cubs offense 1 R on 5 H
    (RBI 2B by Montanez)

  • Ripsnorter1

    54 games are gone. One Third of the season is gone. The Cubs are 23 – 31.
    Multiply by 3 and it projects to 69-93. I predicted 70 wins this year. 

  • paulcatanese

    Watching the Cubs tonight I got the impression they were thinking
    “I dont give a sxxt anymore,just get this cxxp over with.” And showed it.