Game Fifty-Six: Cubs (23-32) vs. Cardinals (34-25)
Game Time – 3:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: FOX Saturday Baseball – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 186
Location – Busch Stadium, St. Louis
Randy Wells (1-1, 5.40/1.80) vs. Kyle Lohse (7-2, 2.13/0.92)
Will the Cubs show up to the park today and will Mike Quade have them ready to play? The Cubs seemed to go through the motions against their archrival Friday night … and in the process they lost their fourth game in a row (six of seven in the loss column). The Cubs enter play today a season low nine game under .500 … and in need of a win.
The Cubs are hoping to have Aramis Ramirez back in the lineup this afternoon. Ramirez received seven stitches after getting hit in the mouth with a groundball Wednesday afternoon. Ramirez is listed as day-to-day. If Ramirez is not back, look for Blake DeWitt to get a start at the hot corner.
In other news … Matt Garza is expected to be activated from the DL Monday and start in the opener against the Reds. Alfonso Soriano and Jeff Baker are in Mesa rehabbing … and Reed Johnson could return Thursday from the DL for the start of the Phillies series.
Today it all starts with Randy Wells … Randy Wells will make his second start since coming off the DL this afternoon. Wells was inconsistent at best in his last outing against the Pirates. Wells nibbled and ran up his pitch count while pitching with seemingly not much confidence. His first outing in nearly two months was predictable and most importantly, it is now out of the way. Randy Wells should view today as being the start of his season.
This afternoon will be Wells’ first road start of the season and he will face the organization he rooted for while growing up in Belleville, Illinois.
Wells is 2-2 in five career games, four starts, versus the Redbirds with a 3.91 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP … at Busch Stadium, a perfect 1-0 in one start with a 1.13 ERA and a 0.63 WHIP. Wells threw a gem in front of family and friends last September 14 (one run on five hits in eight innings with no walks and five strikeouts.
Cardinals Career Numbers against Randy Wells
- Lance Berkman – 3-for-8 with 4 walks
- Jon Jay – 1-for-5 with a walk
- Yadier Molina – 3-for-6 with 2 doubles and a walk
- Albert Pujols – 1-for-8
- Colby Rasmus – 3-for-8 with 2 walks
- Skip Schumaker – 2-for-12
The Cubs selected Kyle Lohse in the 29th round of the 1996 draft and traded him to the Twins three years later in the deal that brought Rick Aguilera and Scott Downs to the North Side of Chicago. Lohse has always had the talent to be a successful big league pitcher and while he’s shown flashes (15-6 in 2008 with a 3.78 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP), Lohse has been very inconsistent until this season.
Lohse is on a three-game winning streak, the last time he lost a game was back on May 7 against the Brewers … and it was a gem. Lohse allowed only one run on six hits in eight innings, the Cards were blanked 4-0. Lohse beat the Rockies in Denver in his last outing … he allowed just two runs on six hits in six innings.
This afternoon will be Lohse’s sixth start of the year at Busch Stadium, he is 2-2 in the first five with a 2.61 ERA and a 0.92 WHIP.
Kyle Lohse is 1-4 in 10 career starts versus the Cubs with a 6.52 ERA and a 1.65 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against Kyle Lohse
- Starlin Castro – 0-for-2
- Blake DeWitt – 1-for-2 with 2 walks
- Kosuke Fukudome – 3-for-14 with 2 doubles and a walk
- Koyie Hill – 1-for-5 with a double
- Carlos Pena – 8-for-31 with a double, a triple, a home run and 2 walks
- Aramis Ramirez – 7-for-15 with 3 doubles and a home run
- Geovany Soto – 3-for-10 with a double and a walk
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