Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Reds – 08/07/11

Game One Hundred Fifteen: Cubs (49-65) vs. Reds (54-59)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Randy Wells (3-4, 5.89/1.62) vs. Bronson Arroyo (7-9, 5.45/1.40)

Weather permitting … Q’s Cubs enter play this afternoon riding a seven-game win streak and have already posted back-to-back series wins for only the second time this season. After managing a pathetic 9-17 record in July, the Cubs are 6-0 in August and are shooting for their seventh victory of the month … in as many days.

The last time a Cubs team posted eight straight victories was back in 2008 when they won nine in a row (May 26 – June 3). The nine-game winning streak was the most consecutive wins during the Lou Piniella Era.

Q’s starting pitchers have put together back-to-back quality starts in the series despite walking a combined 10 batters in 12 innings (Ryan Dempster: 6 on Friday; Carlos Zambrano: 4 on Saturday). Randy Wells has not found a way to succeed when he helps out the opposition. If Wells starts issuing free passes like Dempster and Zambrano, the Reds will put a lot of runs on the board this afternoon.

Look for Mike Quade to load his lineup with lefties this afternoon. Bronson Arroyo has held right-handed hitters to a .248 batting average this season while lefties have hit .344 with 17 of the 30 homers Arroyo has served up.

In other news Andrew Cashner spent a little time with Bruce Levine during Talkin’ Baseball (ESPN 1000) on Saturday morning. Cashner threw another bullpen Saturday morning. Cashner said he felt great and thinks he will be able to go on a minor league rehab in 10-14 days. Cashner is hoping to return to the Cubs before September 1.

The Cubs have said that if Cashner is able to pitch in the big leagues this season it would be out of the pen and not as a starter. If Cashner returns around September 1, it would be only as a reliever. He would not have time to build up the arm strength (and pitch count) to be used as a starter.

From Down on the Farm … Prior to Saturday night’s game against the Fresno Grizzlies, Brett Jackson was 14-for-35 over his last 10 games. Jackson was riding a five-game hitting streak and had reached base safely in 10 straight. Jackson’s line over the 10 games: .400/.500/.800/1.300 with two doubles, a triple, four home runs and seven walks (nine strikeouts). After struggling for a bit, Jackson was hitting .291/.394/.570/.963 with five doubles, a triple, five home runs, 14 runs scored and 14 walks (28 strikeouts) in 22 games with the I-Cubs. Jackson was 0-for-4 on Saturday night in Iowa’s 3-2 victory over Fresno.

After posting back-to-back wins on Sunday, the Cubs are 4-13 on Sundays in 2011 … and today it all starts with Randy Wells.

Randy Wells is coming off a solid outing after the offense gave him a big cushion. Wells pitched with a confidence that he has not since his rookie season. No matter the score Wells must pitch like he did on Tuesday in Pittsburgh. Wells gave up only the two first inning runs (17 first inning runs in 13 starts) on five hits with a walk and seven strikeouts in six innings.

Wells has pitched better at Wrigley (2-2 in seven starts with a 5.13 ERA and a 1.64 WHIP) than on the road (1-2 in six starts with a 6.90 ERA and a 1.60 WHIP) and is 2-1 in his last four starts with a 4.13 ERA and a 1.42 WHIP.

This afternoon will be Randy Wells’ first start of the season against the Redlegs … 4-1 in seven career starts with a 2.64 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP (2-1 in three starts in 2010 with a 2.61 ERA and a 1.02 WHIP).

Reds Career Numbers against Randy Wells

  • Bronson Arroyo – 1-for-4
  • Jay Bruce – 2-for-9 with a double and a walk
  • Miguel Cairo – 0-for-1
  • Ryan Hanigan – 6-for-11 with a walk
  • Chris Heisey – 1-for-3 with a walk
  • Paul Janish – 0-for-10 with a walk
  • Fred Lewis – 1-for-2 with a walk
  • Brandon Phillips – 5-for-17 with 2 walks
  • Drew Stubbs – 3-for-9 with a double and a home run
  • Joey Votto – 3-for-17 with a home run and a walk

Bronson Arroyo has had a rough year, mainly due to illness (Valley Fever and mono) but has pitched better of late. Arroyo is coming off a no decision against the Astros (three runs on six hits with two walks and three strikeouts in eight innings) and has not posted a win since June 25 (Reds 1-5 in his last six starts).

Arroyo may be 0-2 in his last four starts with a 4.94 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP but he is facing the Cubs this afternoon … and he always dominates the North Side Nine.

Q’s Cubs finally beat Arroyo back on June 8 (four runs, three earned, on eight hits with a walk, three strikeouts and two homers allowed in 6 1/3 innings) but that was a rarity … the first time a Cubs team had beaten him since 2007.

Arroyo is 0-1 in two starts against the Cubs this season with a 2.63 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP … for his career, 9-8 in 24 games, 22 starts, versus the Cubs with a 2.79 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP (6-3 in 12 games, 11 starts, at Wrigley with a 2.90 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP).

Cubs Career Numbers against Bronson Arroyo

  • Jeff Baker – 0-for-1
  • Darwin Barney – 1-for-7
  • Marlon Byrd – 9-for-19 with a double and a home run
  • Tony Campana – 2-for-3
  • Starlin Castro – 0-for-8
  • Tyler Colvin – 1-for-12
  • Blake DeWitt – 7-for-22 with a double and a home run
  • Koyie Hill – 3-for-9 with a double and 2 walks
  • Reed Johnson – 3-for-16
  • Carlos Pena – 4-for-15 with a double and a home run
  • Aramis Ramirez – 10-for-51 with a double, 2 home runs and 4 walks
  • Alfonso Soriano – 8-for-42 with 5 doubles, a home run and 2 walks
  • Geovany Soto – 2-for-11 with 4 walks
  • Randy Wells – 1-for-3

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Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    Castro – SS
    Campana – LF
    Ramirez – 3B
    Pena – 1B
    Byrd – CF
    DeWitt – 2B
    Soto – C
    Colvin – RF
    Wells – P

    • Demitri

      Neil, you accidentally put two left fielders. I’m assuming Campana is in center. But nice job as always! You having to cover all these miserable games this year must have been tough

      • Richard Hood

        I Imagine that DeWitt is actually playing 2nd base. But you never know they could put Campana there. Stranger things have happened.

      • Neil

        My bad, thank you for catching. I corrected.

        • Ripsnorter1

          I didn’t think you had made a mistake. I knew Quade has a few screws loose, so I figured he wanted two LF and no one in CF. 

  • Axsenior

    DeWitt – 2B

  • Patrick_Schaefer

    IMHO Campana should be playing everyday in either CF or LF, Soriano can pinch hit and ride the bench.

    • Patrick_Schaefer

      Most of our “Veteran” lineup is old and slow we have to have the Ability to manufacture runs and Campana, Castro have the ability to wreak havoc on the base paths and score lots of runs, Jackson should be called up soon and we will then have team speed something we have not had in a long time.

  • paulcatanese

    The Cub history after scoring double digit runs are usually followed by a run shortage the next game. Lets hope Wells can keep the Reds at bay and create an opportunity for a win. The stats indicate a lot of left handers today, but I still dont like the platoon system, weakens the bench too often.

  • Ripken Boy

    How about an outfield of Colvin in LF, Campana in CF and Brett Jackson in RF for the rest of the season. Good defense, young energy and plus it will let us know if any of these 3 are in the Cubs 2012 plans. I have seen enough of DeWitt and Soriano in the outfield and in Cubs pinstripes.

    • Larry

      I’d go for that. I would be interesting to see what they can do.

    • gocubs

      Campana has a terrible arm.  He is very fast and can probably get to a lot of balls, but his arm is worse than Juan Pierre.  His bat is suspect at the ML level as well.  There is no indication that he anything more than a pinch runner in the majors.  

  • Tom U

    Today’s minor league starters:

    Iowa – Dave Bush (0-2, 7.41)
    Tennessee – Trey McNutt (2-4, 4.79) projected
    Daytona – Angel Guzman/Dae-Eun Rhee (0-1, 3.18; 5-7, 4.52)
    Peoria – Eric Jokisch (7-2, 2.90)
    Boise – Willengton Cruz (1-2, 2.57)
    AZL Cubs – Brian Smith (2-2, 2.97) projected

  • Neil

    Wells just sat down the Reds in the first on seven pitches. Scouting reports were apparently not available to the Reds today.

    • Richard Hood

      Neil I think at this point you need a vacation man. You are getting seriously jaded. Not that it isn’t deserved.

    • Calicub

      Who wouldn’t be jaded?
      Watching this garbage daily and still doing the amazing job he does? You gotta give neil props.

      Besides Neil just calls it like he sees it no bias. The reporters that are paid to cover the Cubs are so deep in the cubs pocketbook they have to keep things upbeat.

      Don’t change there’s a reason this website and community are the best source for cubs info and banter on the web.

      • Richard Hood

        Not disagreeing Cali just saying that Neil seems like he is getting more and more put off by what he is seeing. Not that there is any reason to not be.

        • Calicub

          I know I didn’t mean to seem aggressive I just really apprecitate the sinserity of the CCO’s coverage.

          Its unfortunate how diluted conventional media coverage of the Cubs always seems to be. No one says what needs to be said because they are either paid or pressured into spreading the Blue Propaganda if you will

  • Neil

    Reds are first pitch hacking today … Cubs down 1-0 after the Stubbs homer

  • Ripsnorter1

    ChiSox are sick of “No Hit” Dudd, so last night Lillibridge took over at 1B and hit 1 HR in his one AB. So today, Dudd is on the bench and Lillibridge starts, and Lillibridge hit another tater.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Tyler Colvin got a BB? 

    Now I’m jaded, too. 

    • Richard Hood

      lol I guess that is the word of the day. Glad I could help.

  • Neil

    Castro with a long home run

  • Neil

    Pena and Byrd playing the game the right way led to a run.

  • Calicub

    Lookin like the streak ends here..

    • Richard Hood

      Spoke a little too soon

    • cmschube

      Agreed.. Wells is pitching himself out of a Cubs uniform……. hopefully..

      • Henry

        I believe he did that long ago!  Of course nothing should be taken for granted with our delusional management!

  • cmschube

    Funny… Brenly just said he wore a cup… as a manager!!! Odd..

  • Ripsnorter1

    Pirates are toast. Losing 7-0 again…to the Padres, of all people!! LOL

    Oh well, 10 losses in a row, and they are out of the race for sure. 

  • Tom U

    Greg Rohan with a 2 homer, 5 RBI effort as Daytona wins 8-6.

  • Tom U

    Brett Jackson leads-off with another home run, his sixth, as Iowa leads 2-1 after one.

    • Brp921

      Jackson”s looking like he’s ready.

    • donnie

      just hit another one

      • Neil

        And it was a bomb … estimated at 432 feet.

  • Neil

    Excellent job by Tony Campana … broke up the double play. Deserved that ovation.

  • Neil

    Cubs lost 8-7 to Reds Sunday afternoon.

    Randy Wells: 6R, 8H (3HR), BB, K in 7IP; Starlin Castro: 2-for-5, HR, 2R; Marlon Byrd: 3-for-3, 2 2B, 2RBI, BB; Blake DeWitt: 2-for-3, HR, 2RBI, BB

  • Jdarby

    Hopefully order has been restored in the universe and these guys can get back to losing so we can see some much-needed change at the end of the season.

    Has anyone noticed that 16 of the last 19 games in the month of August are against the Braves, Brewers, Cards and Giants? These guys may be hard-pressed to have a .500 month even with the 6-0 mirage to start things. 

    • diehardcubfan

      Yes, it will hopefully cause this team to come crashing back to reality.

    • Brp921

      I agree with you J, but you know, it was fun while it lasted.

  • Neil

    Brett Jackson was 2-for-3 with
    two solo home runs and a walk in Iowa’s 6-1 win over Sacramento on
    Sunday afternoon.