Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Brewers – 06/15/11

Game Sixty-Seven: Cubs (27-39) vs. Brewers (38-30)
Game Time – 7:05pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Carlos Zambrano (3-4, 4.32/1.31) vs. Chris Narveson (3-4, 4.32/1.37)

Updated 4:18pm CDT - Alfonso Soriano Activated from 15-day DLDarwin Barney Placed on 15-day DL with Grade 3 PCL Sprain in Left Knee

Weather permitting … The Chicago Cubs will try to post their first three-game winning streak of the season. The Cubs are the only team in baseball that has not posted three consecutive victories this season. In order for the Cubs to win the elusive third game in a row they will have to beat Chris Narveson for the first time.

The Cubs are expected to activate Alfonso Soriano from the 15-day DL today … and place Darwin Barney on the 15-day DL with a Grade 1 PCL strain in his right knee. Soriano has been on the disabled list since May 31 with a left quad strain. Soriano spent time in Mesa before going on a rehab stint with the Iowa Cubs. Soriano finished his three rehab games 1-for-13 with a run scored.

The Cubs made four roster moves prior to Tuesday’s game and will make at least two more today.

Reed Johnson was activated from the 15-day DL on Tuesday and Chris Carpenter received his call to the show … while Casey Coleman and Tyler Colvin were optioned down to Triple-A Iowa.

The Cubs 40-man roster currently stands at 40 players so if Jim Hendry continues to go outside of the box, he will have to clear space on the 40-man roster.

Tonight it all starts with Carlos Zambrano

After two excellent outings, Carlos Zambrano struggled in his last start after Mike Quade left Big Z in too long. Z allowed seven runs on seven hits in 6 1/3 innings with seven walks and five strikeouts. The big hit was the grand slam in the seventh by Placido Polanco. Don’t be surprised if Mike Quade shortens up Zambrano tonight … Z threw 128 pitches in his last start, the most for Zambrano in a single start since May of 2008.

Z was 2-1 in six starts last month with a 3.60 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP … Z is 0-1 in his last two with a 5.40 ERA and a 1.58 WHIP.

Zambrano beat the Brewers in Milwaukee back on April 8. Prince Fielder and company scored four runs on seven hits (three walks, five strikeouts) in six innings.

Carlos Zambrano is 13-8 in 32 career games, 29 starts, versus the Brewers with a 3.73 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP.

Brewers Career Numbers against Carlos Zambrano

  • Yuniesky Betancourt – 2-for-3
  • Ryan Braun – 9-for-37 with a double, a home run and 4 walks
  • Craig Counsell – 8-for-33 with 2 doubles and 7 walks
  • Prince Fielder – 15-for-43 with 5 doubles, 3 home runs and 15 walks
  • Carlos Gomez – 2-for-4
  • Corey Hart – 8-for-30 with a double, a triple and 5 walks
  • Mark Kotsay – 1-for-9 with a walk
  • Jonathan Lucroy – 2-for-4
  • Casey McGehee – 4-for-16 with a home run and 3 walks
  • Nyjer Morgan – 8-for-22 with a walk
  • Wil Nieves – 2-for-4
  • Rickie Weeks – 9-for-45 with 2 doubles, a home run and a walk

Chris Narveson is coming off his best start of the season … eight innings of shutout ball against the St. Louis Cardinals. Narveson dominated the Redbirds in his last outing, like he did the Cubs back in April. Narveson struck out six, walked one and surrendered six hits to a much better offense than the one on the North Side of Chicago.

Narveson has been inconsistent this season but has a knack for taking advantage of overly aggressive offenses … insert 2011 Chicago Cubs team photo here.

The veteran southpaw is 1-0 in his last two starts with a 2.70 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP.

Narveson is winless on the road this season (0-3 in seven starts with a 4.69 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP) but has never lost a game at Wrigley (2-0 in seven career games, one start, with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP).

Chris Narveson has never lost to the Chicago Cubs. He is 4-0 in 10 career games, three starts, with a 2.70 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Chris Narveson

  • Jeff Baker – 2-for-8 with a walk
  • Starlin Castro – 2-for-6
  • Blake DeWitt – 2-for-4 with a double
  • Kosuke Fukudome – 0-for-3
  • Carlos Pena – 1-for-3
  • Aramis Ramirez – 2-for-11 with a home run and a walk
  • Alfonso Soriano – 1-for-9 with a walk
  • Geovany Soto – 4-for-10 with a double and 3 walks

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Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"Change is inevitable, but personal growth is a choice." - Bob Proctor
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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Castro – SS
    Johnson – CF
    Baker – 1B
    Ramirez – 3B
    Soto – C
    Montanez – RF
    DeWitt – LF
    LeMahieu – 2B
    Zambrano – P

    • Ripsnorter1

      I hope Baker has his stroke back. He was hitting so well before the injury.

      SHOCKED! COMPLETELY SHOCKED that LeMahieu is playing 2B with Baker at 1B. Don’t tell me that Quade has learned something.

      Why DeWitt–a LH hitter–vs. a LHP, and playing out of position in LF, where he has allowed a lot of extra runs to score? After all, we have Sorry-oh-no, a RH hitter, AND A GREAT LF, ready to play, don’t we?

      • cubtex

        With the rain and wet field I am sure that is the reason Soriano is not starting tonight.

      • Rolandbowman

        According to the splits, Dewitt is a slightly better hitter against LH pitching.  Maybe they want to ease Soriano back into the lineup?

      • Dorasaga

        Maybe we should ask more politely next time. ;-)

    • paulcatanese

      Not a bad lineup given the circumstance, I think thats all the RH hitters available(8) incl. Z. All they can do is give it a try.

    • paulcatanese

      I know of one kid thats saying  “rain,rain,go away” and his name has the initials LM. He wants to play.

  • Tom U

    Tonight’s minor league starters:

    Iowa – Ramon Ortiz (4-2, 4.48)
    Daytona – Dae-Eun Rhee (2-2, 4.38)
    Peoria – Angel Guzman (0-0, 0.00)

    Tennessee postponed

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ricketts put kibosh on players wearing goat shirts outside while fans in park

    • Ripsnorter1

      He should have. Obscene.

      • Roland

        I concur.

        • cubs1967

          sticks and stones……..boys…grow up……….hell yes wear them.

          let’s have some balls……….unlike the owner!

          • Ripsnorter1

            No, it’s called decency. There are a lot of young boys and girls that do not need this kind of trash before their eyes. In fact I would argue that none of us need that kind of talk.

    • paulcatanese

      And Ricketts with that statement, although correct,just made someone outside of the orginization a million as they re-print the shirts (slightly different ) and sell them to the public.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Comcast SportsNet:
    Ricketts says he has 100 percent confidence in Hendry and Quade. 

    • Ripsnorter1

      He shouldn’t have. Idiots.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Sun-Times: Ricketts says Hendry’s job safe. Feels “comdortable” with Hendry and confident in his ability to take us forward”

    • Ripsnorter1

      Only if one is hoping to unseat the Pirates and Astros for last place.

    • GrantJones7

      The vote of confidence is NEVER good, because if he was safe, everyone would know, it wouldnt need to be announced

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tom Ricketts said he did not like Zambrano mentioning teammates but thought over all comments Z made “was not bad”.

    • John_CC

      Either Tom or his handlers have been reading the papers and 4-letter website. 

      How did make these comments, Neil? I mean, did he actually answer questions from reporters or just release a statement? 

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

         Answered questions from reporters

  • Parkymom

    Has the game been delayed or rained out?

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Not as of 5:33pm CDT

  • Ripsnorter1

    Brewers gave up–some here said “too much”–shortstop Alcides Escobar, center fielder Lorenzo Cain, and right-hander Jeremy Jeffress for Greinke, Betancourt, and $2 million dollars from KC Royals. At the time I said that the Brewers robbed KC. Let’s check the stats….

    Betancourt…..3 HR….20 RBI…..232 BA……256 OBP….341 slug
    Greinke…..6-1…436 era in 8 starts (has been hurt)

    KC
    Escobar (the SS of the future–LOL) .232 BA 0 HR  16 RBI AWFUL
    Jeffress (in between tokes on the marijuana cigs) 1-1 1sv 4.70
    Cain–in AAA Omaha, hitting .299 6 HR 29 RBI.

    Brewers got what they expected so far out of Greinke. Betancourt is far below his 16-20 hr output, but he may recover.

    KC Royals
    Escobar is fielding at a .984 clip. He HAS to field because his bat is so terrible. Some speculate that KC is looking to pick up a SS. Escobar and Betancourt are rated $7 and #8 in baseball for zone rating. Escobar has the highest range factor in MLB, Betancourt is #18. Castro is #15.

    Cain–who knows? I think he’s overrated. These GMs are in love with big speedsters in CF with no power. Well, if you can’t hit with power in the ML, you can’t hit. You have to be a threat to hit the ball deep to the outfield on occasion, or they’ll play you at the girl’s line, and take away your line drive and bloop singles.

    Jeffress–nothing great so far, and just one drug bust away from being banned from baseball.

    • cubtex

      Rip, I have to agree with you on the players you mentioned not performing well so far…..BUT you are not including the key piece to the trade for the Royals.
       
      Jake Odorizzi- I believe a Chicago kid. Ranked #11 by Baseball America for Top Prospects in all of the minors!

      0.96 ERA with 2 plus pitches
      54K’s in 39 2/3 IP
       
      So…while the other players have not done well Odorizzi has become a top pitching prospect in all of baseball.

    • cubtex

      By the way…Brett Lawrie, the prospect the Brewers gave up for Marcum was the #1 prospect in the minors Ranked by Baseball America. Marcum and Greinke are both doing well…but if they don’t win it this year(since they will more than likely lose Fielder and possibly Greinke through free agency) they mortgaged a lot of their future! With Lawrie and Odorizzi those are 2 of the top 11 prospects in all of baseball they gave up. FYI….not one of the Cubs prospects theys gave up to the Rays for Garza are even ranked.

      • cubtex

        I should clarify….not ranked in their weekly top propect rankings. Archer was ranked before the season started but he has fallen sharply this year and I believe Lee was ranked in the top 100.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ricketts said he has “never bought into, ‘I should have a baseball
    guy to watch my baseball guy and his baseball guys.’ Then what do you
    get, a baseball guy to watch the baseball guy who’s watching your
    baseball guys?”

    • Ripsnorter1

      Okay, so he has been reading the newspapers and listening to Bruce Levine, et al.

    • John_CC

      Because he is such an experienced “baseball guy” himself, with such a strong track record as an owner – of a franchise with such a great franchise history…

      Man, I’ll tell you, I’ve been laying off climbing on the Ricketts so far. I believe it takes a little time to figure things out, but these kinds of bullshit, chip on the shoulder statements aren’t going to earn him any more time. From me or any Cubs fan. 

      Get to work, Chairman Ricketts.

    • Baron_S

      Ricketts sounds like he lacks some testicular fortitude

      • Dorasaga

        LOL At least you stayed classy on that one.

        Fans and media must hold the owner and higher management accountable, period.

        • Cheryl

          The management will be held responsible as ticket sales dwindle. But I don’t expect Ricketts to fire or express lack of confidence to the news media. But I still think Quade and Hendry’s days are numbered.

      • paulcatanese

        Of course,you must know where they are first.

    • paulcatanese

      Sounds like the movie “Casino”

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil
  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil
  • Anonymous47701

    Trade idea:

    1B Carlos Pena to Texas Rangers
    for 3B Chris Davis and RHP Darren O’Day.

    Carlos Zambrano to New York Yankees
    for 3 Prospects and PTBNL

  • Anonymous47701

    2012 Lineup idea

    B.Jackson-CF
    D.Barney-2B
    S.Castro-SS
    P.Fielder-1B
    W.Castillo-C
    C.Davis-3B
    A.Soriano-LF
    T.Colvin-RF
    Pitcher

    bench

    R.Flaherty-Utility
    R.Ridling-1B,3B
    S.Clevenger-C
    T.Campana-CF,LF
    L.Montanez-RF

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1512275173 Matt Collins

      u have a new lineup idea every day make up ur mind

      • Dorasaga

        Anonymous47701 needs to speak up his idea, not lining up names like random numbers.

        • Anonymous47701

          Thank You Very Very Much, Dorasaga!

  • Ripsnorter1

    Pittsburgh just jumped on Houston 1-0 in the first. That might be enough to win, with Houston’s lousy offense.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Bad news: the Reds beat LA today. So sorry for Dusty. . . . .

    It’d be great to four game sweep the Brewers, wouldn’t it? 

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    No word on first pitch yet

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Angel Guzman threw 2 IP for Class A Peoria
    and gave up 1 R, 2 H, 1 BB. He threw 29 pitches

  • cubtex

    For those who get the cable channel FCS Atlantic they are replaying a Florida Miami college baseball game so you can check out Zeke DeVoss if you interested to see the Cubs 3rd round pick

    • Ripsnorter1

      Just go to ESPN and watch the Rangers play the Yanks for free . . . . .

      just click on the center of this screen
      http://espn.go.com/mlb/

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Around 8:45 for first pitch.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Game on …

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    What a turnaround by the Big Z … struck out Braun, Fielder and McGehee

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Baker with a solo shot

    • Zonk

      Jeff Baker seemingly has only one above-average skill:  He rakes Left Handed pitching. 

      That’s pretty much it though.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Excellent relay … Montanez, LeMahieu to Ramirez, Weeks out at third

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    32-pitch 4th inning for Z, 77 total after 4.

  • SteveGu

    As the Cubs implode yet again, three in a row looks like it won’t happen. Bye bye happy thoughts.

  • John_CC

    97 pitches through 5 from Z. Ick.  Is he looking that bad?  Was it the delay? 

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      When he’s missing it’s right down the plate, not fooling anyone tonight.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Another ugly inning … three runs scored, Z at 97 pitches would not be surprised if that is all for Zambrano

    • Ripsnorter1

      He’s got to throw 128. He’s coming out for the sixth . . . .

      What an Ace Zambrano is these days! Worth every penny!

      • Ripsnorter1

        He needs to pop his mouth off again about Marmol, etc.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    REED!

    Three-run shot!

    • Ripsnorter1

      He’s really having a nice year for us. I thought he was done after a year with the Dodgers, but he’s proving me wrong. 

    • cubtex

      The bench has been one of the few bright spots this year! Reed, Baker, DeWitt,Hill,and with Campana’s speed to utilize, they have all been solid!

      • paulcatanese

        Yes they are, but I would be interested what you think about LeMahuie at 2nd base tonight. I thought he did very well and deserves another start.

        • cubtex

          Paul, didn’t get a chance to watch much of game last night, but I agree. Give LeMahieu some starts at 2b now with Barney on the shelf. I think that is the position he should be playing since he is basically a singles hitter.

  • Ripsnorter1

    I told you Z will pitch the sixth.

  • RynoTiger

    can someone tell me, how many rehab at bats did Soriano get before being activated?  And how did he do in those at bats?

    • Ripsnorter1

      1-13. Pretty good, eh? Hit a single.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Rip, thank you for answering. Ryno, I did mention above in the game preview. Soriano played in three games, 1-for-13 with a run scored.

    • paulcatanese

      And he took batting practice underneath in the cage, problem was the cage was not wide enough to handle the pitches he likes to swing at.

  • Baron_S

    hes a little wild, but I just love Carpenters stuff..

    he threw a fastball up there at 99mph even….. and a nasty slider mixed in a couple times. The best stuff I’ve seen from a farm-grown pitcher in ages… specially in relief.

    • Baron_S

      also compared to the Bergs,Colemans, Stevens and Diamonds — his stuff looks of a different caliber altogether…

      hopefully they can teach him effective wildness ala Marmol, and not lily-livered wildness ala Kyle Farnsworth.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    I will be glad when John Grabow’s contract expires. Another horrible signing by Jim Hendry. Still hard to believe Grabow is making more this season than any other reliever on the team.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    DJ with his first career RBI

    • paulcatanese

      Neil, I thought he did very well, his relay was right on the button. I beleive he earned another start tommorow. Pretty smoothe out there.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 9-5 to Brewers Wednesday nite. Baker solo HR in 1st;
    Johnson 3-run HR in 5th; LeMahieu RBI 1B; Z’s line: 5R, 9H, 2BB, 6Ks
    in 6IP

  • Thomas Doughty

    Check this out this is pretty funny not sure if anyone has posted this ornot but its pretty funny http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110615&content_id=20518868&vkey=news_chc&c_id=chc been a while since ipostedhope u guys enjoy

  • Thomas Doughty

    Check this out this is pretty funny not sure if anyone has posted this ornot but its pretty funny http://chicago.cubs.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20110615&content_id=20518868&vkey=news_chc&c_id=chc been a while since ipostedhope u guys enjoy