Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Nationals – 08/10/11

Game One Hundred Seventeen: Cubs (49-67) vs. Nationals (56-59)
Game Time – 7:05pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Rodrigo Lopez (2-3, 5.17/1.49) vs. Ross Detwiler (1-1, 2.66/1.28)

#10 … It is Ron Santo Day at Wrigley Field. The Cubs will unveil the statue honoring Ron Santo in pre-game ceremonies starting at 5:30pm CDT. CLTV will cover the ceremonies live and reports will be on WGN News. To watch the ceremonies on the web, visit 720 WGN Radio will also air the ceremony with their coverage beginning at 5:30pm CDT.

Santo’s statue was placed next to Billy Williams’ statue at the corner of Addison and Sheffield. Pat Hughes, members of the Santo family and the Ricketts family along with Billy Williams, Ernie Banks, Ferguson Jenkins and Glenn Beckert are expected to speak at the ceremony.

Ron Santo meant so much to so many. For those that have not read the book written by Pat Hughes, “Ron Santo A Perfect 10” you can visit www.SantoFilms to purchase a copy.

As for the game on the field, the Cubs will try to get back on track tonight behind Rodrigo Lopez. According to a report from Bruce Miles, Mike Quade is “committed to him right now” and the Cubs’ skipper does not see Lopez coming out of the rotation anytime soon.

Aramis Ramirez is listed as day-to-day with back spasms and is likely to miss his second straight game. Ramirez was a late scratch on Tuesday after first feeling pain in his back on Sunday. The Cubs said if the game had not been postponed on Monday that Ramirez would not have been able to play.

Starlin Castro extended his hitting streak to nine games and his run-scoring streak to 10 games with his solo homer in the eighth inning Tuesday night. After hitting three home runs season and three in his first 107 games this year, Castro has hit three dingers his last six games.

The Cubs are 1-4 in the first five against the Nationals and have already lost the season-series. Tonight it all begins with Rodrigo Lopez

Rodrigo Lopez is coming off another poor outing and if Randy Wells has been pitching for his job, then Rodrigo Lopez should be as well. Lopez has not completed five innings of work in his last two outings and has allowed 12 earned runs on 15 hits with five walks and two strikeouts in his last 8 1/3 innings (12.97 ERA and a 2.40 WHIP).

Lopez had a very good outing against the Phillies and a nice stretch of outings at the beginning of July but the Cubs would be better served to see if Casey Coleman has made the improvements that the box scores says he has.

Lopez is coming off a no decision to the Pirates after allowing six runs on seven hits with two walks and no strikeouts in four innings. In his last four games, three starts (including the one against the Phillies), Lopez is 1-1 with a 7.47 ERA and a 1.60 WHIP.

Rodrigo Lopez did not face the Nationals last month in D.C. and he owns a 1-3 record in four career starts against the Nationals with a 4.62 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP.

Nationals Career Numbers against Rodrigo Lopez

  • Rick Ankiel – 1-for-3 with a home run
  • Alex Cora – 0-for-6 with a walk
  • Ian Desmond – 2-for-3 with a double
  • Jonny Gomes – 10-for-23 with a double, 2 home runs and a walk
  • Michael Morse – 1-for-2
  • Laynce Nix – 2-for-8 with a double
  • Jayson Werth – 1-for-4 with a home run and 2 walks
  • Ryan Zimmerman – 3-for-11 with 2 doubles and a walk

Ross Detwiler made his 2011 big league debut against the Cubs back on July 5 … and picked up his first and only win of the season. Detwiler held the Cubs to two runs on four this without a walk and a strikeout in 5 1/3 innings. The Nats’ southpaw has put together a solid seven games for Davey Johnson and will make his third start of the season tonight.

Detwiler is coming off a loss in Colorado. Detwiler allowed two runs on five hits with three walks and a strikeout in five innings.

The Cubs must be patient against Detwiler tonight and make him work … he will beat himself if Q’s offense gives him a chance.

Tonight will be Detwiler’s second career start against the Cubs and the first at Wrigley.

Jeff Baker (1-for-2), Darwin Barney (0-for-1), Marlon Byrd (0-for-2), Blake DeWitt (0-for-1), Reed Johnson (1-for-3 with a double), Carlos Pena (1-for-4 with a walk), Aramis Ramirez (1-for-3 with a home run), Alfonso Soriano (0-for-2) and Geovany Soto (1-for-2) all have very limited at bats against Ross Detwiler.

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Quote of the Day

"Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere." - Albert Einstein