Cubs Q-less Against Greinke – Cubs 2 Brewers 3

Game One Hundred Thirty-Four – Cubs 2 Brewers 3
WP – Zack Greinke (13-5) LP – Casey Coleman (2-7) Save – John Axford (40)

The Cubs lost for the eighth straight time at Miller Park on Sunday afternoon and were swept in a three-game series in Milwaukee for the second time this season.

The Cubs looked overmatched against Zack Greinke, who took a no hitter into the fifth inning. Q’s offense did not put two runners on base in the same inning against Greinke, who improved to a perfect 10-0 (12 starts) at Miller Park this season.

Tyler Colvin (1-for-4 with a home run) helped make the game interesting in the ninth. Colvin launched his sixth homer of the year off John Axford with one out in the ninth. After Marlon Byrd walked, Alfonso Soriano flied out to deep right for the second out of the inning. Reed Johnson hit for Koyie Hill and reached on a fielding error by Casey McGehee.

Geovany Soto (0-for-last-20) pinch-hit for Carlos Marmol and grounded Axford’s first pitch to third. McGehee bobbled but recovered and tagged out a sliding Marlon Byrd to end the game.

Darwin Barney (2-for-4, two doubles, RBI) doubled twice in four trips to the plate and drove in the Cubs first run of the game in the eighth. Blake DeWitt ripped a pinch-hit double off Greinke in the eighth, the Cubs fourth hit of the game, and scored on Barney’s second double.

Aramis Ramirez (0-for-4) and Starlin Castro (0-for-3 with a walk) both saw their hitting streaks come to an end.

The Cubs finished the game 1-for-5 with RISP and left seven on base. In the last seven games, the Cubs are 9-for-63 with runners in scoring position and have stranded 59 baserunners.

Casey Coleman put together a quality start and his best outing of the year. Coleman completed seven innings of work for the third time in his career after a rough start. Coleman gave up a run in the first then a two-run bomb to Corey Hart in the fifth. The Cubs defense turned two double plays that bailed Coleman out of early jams.

Casey Coleman retired the last seven batters he faced and ended up allowing three runs on six hits with three walks and six strikeouts. Coleman threw 93 pitches, 56 for strikes.

Mike Quade was ejected for the sixth time this season early in Sunday’s game. Aramis Ramirez did not like homeplate umpire Bill Miller’s strike-three call on a 3-2 pitch that ended the first. Ramirez voiced his displeasure and Quade came out to defend his player. Quade said something to Miller and was tossed just six minutes into the game.

Sunday was the third time in the last month that Quade has been ejected from a game. The Cubs’ skipper is one ejection away from the organizations All-Time mark for ejections by a manager in a single season. Johnny Evers and Frankie Frisch hold the record (7). Quade is tied with Ron Gardenhire for the most ejections by a manager in baseball this season (6) and has equaled the number of times Lou Piniella was shown the door in his nearly four seasons as Cubs manager.

The Cubs have lost seven of eight (5-16 on Sundays in 2011) and find themselves 20 games under .500 again with a 57-77 record on the season …

The Cubs went in order against Zack Greinke in the first inning … and shortly after homeplate umpire Bill Miller rung up Aramis Ramirez on a questionable 3-2 pitch, Mike Quade went out to get his third baseman, who was voicing his displeasure with the call. Quade said something to Miller and was tossed from the game.

The Brewers came out swinging against Casey Coleman … and for the second game in a row, ended the game in the first inning.

Corey Hart ripped a single into center (2-1 pitch) to start the inning. Nyjer Morgan sacrificed Hart to second … and nearly beat Pena’s throw to first. Casey Coleman then left one up and over the plate for Ryan Braun. Braun ripped Coleman’s first pitch into the right field corner. Hart scored and Braun ended up at second with a double.

Prince Fielder got under Coleman’s first pitch and hit a high fly into right center. Byrd and Colvin had communication issues again. Byrd fielded the ball (Colvin’s play) and threw to third. Braun advanced but was stranded when McGehee struck out swinging to end the inning (2-2 pitch). Casey threw 13 pitches in the first, nine for strikes.

Other than a two-out walk by Marlon Byrd, the Cubs did nothing against Greinke in the second.

Casey Coleman faced the minimum in the second. The extremely aggressive Brewers’ offense saw only five pitches in the inning. Betancourt tried to bunt his way on but Coleman threw him out at first. After Jerry Hairston, Jr. singled to right (0-1 pitch), Lucroy rapped into a 6-4-3 inning ending double play on the first pitch.

Zack Greinke kept the Cubs off balance in the top of the third. Outside of a nice, seven-pitch at bat by Starlin Castro that resulted in a two-out walk, the Cubs did nothing in the third.

Casey Coleman started the bottom of the third by missing on his first two pitches to Zack Greinke. Greinke eventually grounded out to second (2-2 pitch) but the lack of command was a forecast of things to come.

Coleman issued back-to-back walks to Corey Hart (3-2) pitch and Nyjer Morgan (3-2 pitch) ahead of the big boys. With one out and two on, Coleman walked Ryan Braun on four pitches to load the bases.

Prince Fielder hit a 1-1 pitch to Barney, who threw to second to force Braun. Braun tried to take Castro out at second. Castro was able to get enough on a hop-throw to first for Carlos Pena to make an excellent scoop to complete the double play.

The Cubs continued to be no-hit by Greinke in the fourth … and went down in order.

Casey Coleman sat down the Brewers in order in the bottom of the fourth. At the end of four, Coleman’s pitch count stood at 52 (30 for strikes) and the Cubs were down 1-0.

Marlon Byrd broke up Greinke’s no-hit bid with a bloop single to center to start the fifth. Alfonso Soriano hit a 1-0 pitch off the end of the bat and right back to Greinke. The Brewers’ pitcher snagged the liner and doubled off Byrd at first. Hill struck out swinging to end the inning.

Zack Greinke faced only two over the minimum through five innings.

Casey Coleman struck out Lucroy looking to start the bottom of the fifth … then it turned ugly. Zack Greinke ripped Coleman’s first pitch into right field. On a 0-2 offering to Corey Hart, Greinke took off for second and recorded the first stolen base of his career. The Cubs were not holding him on base.

Coleman went from 0-2 to 3-2 on Hart before throwing a changeup down and on the outside part of the plate. Hart reached down and pulled the ball into the second deck above the left field wall … and just like that it was 3-0 Brewers.

Nyjer Morgan grounded out to second and Braun reached on an infield single to short. Braun tried to check his swing and hit a weak grounder to Castro that he could not make a play on. Fielder flied out to center on the first pitch to end the inning.

After five complete, 3-0 Brewers.

Corey Hart robbed Starlin Castro of an extra base hit in the sixth. Castro lined a 0-2 pitch into the right field corner that Hart made an excellent running catch on to take away a hit. Darwin Barney followed with a two-out double to right center but was stranded when Ramirez struck out swinging to end the inning.

The Brewers did nothing against Casey Coleman in the sixth (80 pitches, 48 for strikes).

Carlos Pena led off the seventh with the Cubs’ third hit off Greinke … a single to right through the shift. Colvin (struck out swinging), Byrd (lineout to center) and Soriano (groundout to hole at short) went down in order to end the inning.

The Brewers did nothing against Casey Coleman for the second straight inning. Coleman sat Milwaukee down in order and finished his outing by retiring the last seven batters he faced.

After Koyie Hill flied out to right to start the eighth, Blake DeWitt hit for Coleman and pulled a 3-2 pitch into the right field corner. DeWitt ended up at second with the Cubs’ fourth hit. Starlin Castro grounded out to short … and ended Zack Greinke’s day.

Francisco Rodriguez replaced Greinke and gave up a double to Darwin Barney. Barney went with a 0-2 pitch and drove in DeWitt with the Cubs first run of the game. Ramirez grounded out to third to end the inning (2-2 pitch).

Carlos Marmol sat down the Brewers in order in the eighth on 15 pitches, 10 for strikes.

Carlos Pena led off the ninth and launched a 1-0 pitch to deep right center. Nyjer Morgan tracked it down a couple of feet from the wall for the first out. Tyler Colvin stepped in and smoked a 1-1 pitch over the wall in right center. Colvin’s sixth longball of the year cut the Brewers lead to 3-2.

Marlon Byrd walked on four pitches to put the tying run on base … and Tony Campana remained on the bench.

Alfonso Soriano went with a 1-2 pitch and drove the ball to the wall in right. Hart caught the ball maybe three feet in front of the wall.

Reed Johnson hit for Koyie Hill and reached on a fielding error by Casey McGehee. With runners on first and second with two out, Geovany Soto (0-for-19 in series) hit for Carlos Marmol. Soto swung at the first pitch and hit a grounder to McGehee. Marlon Byrd was running by the Brewers’ third baseman and was tagged to end the game.

The Cubs did not quit on Sunday … but a loss is a loss.

Box Score from Yahoo Sports

The Cubs open a three-game series on Monday night in San Francisco. Randy Wells versus Tim Lincecum in game one.

Quote of the Day

"Show me a guy who’s afraid to look bad, and I’ll show you a guy you can beat every time." – Lou Brock

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  • Kingdomusa

    Q-LESS is BETTER than Q-MORE !!!!!!! We are 23.5 games out & 20 games under .500. Its time to check out some of our youth EVERYDAY somehow. Q’s
    vets have let him down. Most cub fans can’t wait for the GM announcement.

    • paulcatanese

      Agree, and the only thing positive about Qua is he is approaching the Cub record for ejections, about the only thing he is capable of.

    • Ryan7

      You mean every cub fan can’t wait till they announce the new GM

  • paulcatanese

    Neil, very clever title to the post, you are out doing yourself every day.

  • BosephHeyden

    5 losses away from mathematical elimination in the Central and 7 from the Wild Card.  I feel that the sooner that happens, the sooner they can deal with the reality that they really sucked it up this year and, yeah, it is on their heads.

    Big problem is that, if you remove Quade, Listach seems just as content to throw vets out there and not manage games correctly as his would-be predecessor, so they’ll have to think outside the box.  Maybe Jaramillo could be given marching orders to run out the young guys to see what they have?

    Doubtful, I know, but this is as close to blind hope as I’ll ever give the Cubs.

    • paulcatanese

      I dont know, maybe Riggins as he always looks as though he has time on his hands, and he meets the qualifications for a manager, he never changes expressions.

  • michael

    I loves the headline Neil, great job again

  • paulcatanese

    Neil, this question may be for Tom I dont know. But reading the comment about
    LaHair and his approaching the record at Iowa for home runs, it was mentioned
    it was held by Joe Hicks in 1984. That cannot be the same Joe Hicks that I played with is it? He would have to be pretty old.

    • Neil

      Paul, here is the Joe Hicks that set the record in Iowa in 1984

      • paulcatanese

        Thank you Neil, for sure not the same person, could be a son? That would be about the same time frame. Anyway thanks.

    • Tom U

      That’s  a surprise for me, although Iowa has only been the Triple-A team for the Cubs since 1981. Karl Pagel hit 39 home runs for the Wichita Aeros, the Cubs’ Triple-A team in 1979. 

      • paulcatanese

        Thanks Tom for the reply, I didnt think it could be at all possible as we were on the same team in 1956, he would have to be in a rocking chair in 84, the name just rang out at me, and as I responded to Neil, he could be a son, as my first son was born in 58. But no way for me to contact to find out,

  • Demitri

    Right now we have the 6th pick in the first round.. Keep it up cubbies we could get a higher pick!

  • Richard Hood

    From what I heard on the radio (could not watch the game was on the way to a funeral).  Moreland made it sound like Quade was trying to get ARAM back to the dugout when he got tossed. He also said the ball bounced that was called strike 3. If either one of those are correct then we have a much bigger problem than Q getting booted again. We have a situation where Miller decided that Grienke was going to win today one way or another..

    Like I said I didn’t see it. Can anyone tell if what I heard was close to accurate?

    • paulcatanese

      Richard, not from what I saw. They also showed it on the strike o meter. It was low but about 3-4 inches out of the zone. Could have gone either way.

  • XRobMorX

    Casey Coleman = Shawn Boskie

    How long do you give a pitcher to show you that he is MLB material?

    • Richard Hood

      I would say more than 19 career starts. I also would say that he pitched pretty good today. The homer he gave up was on the black and fooled Corey Hart. Normally when someone swings one handed it is not going to go 400 feet.

      I think that this is just the Brewers year. They seemed to get every break this series. Even though I agree with Paul they certainly manufactured there own luck a lot as well.

  • Ryan7

    ok I have been on every cub site that I can find and I still haven’t heard anything new. It’s driving me crazy not knowing what’s going to happen. Anyone else like that.

    So I thought about talking about some moves or trades that we cub fans might like to see.

    I think aram will be back next year. Why, because there isn’t a better 3rd basemen. And there isn’t anyone to bring up. And I don’t want someone playing out of position, unless we move Starlin to 3rd and bring in a new SS. But even I am a little nerves about doing that.

    I see the cubs keeping pena only for trade bait. I see the cubs signing Feilder. I see him getting 7 yrs around 200+mm. Or 6 yrs and an opinion for the 7th yr.

    I also see the pitching staff being all changed except for Garza as our 1 or 2. I think we might have a different closer as well. Woody will be back and Marshall will be back to. Demp I think has pitched his last yr with the cubs as has big z.

    The out field I think is going to change over the next year as we see Jackson taking one one the three spots.

    Now for the coaching staff, well I see all of them out the door next year all but for the hitting coach. And then again I can see him being replaced as well.

    So what does everyone else say.

    • Brp921

      If Fielder get 30million a year I hope he’s on a different team.

  • diehardcubfan

    I figured even after the decent month of August the Cubs had the real Cubs team would return.  After posting that rundown of key stats a few days ago one could only come to the conclusion that the real Cubs team would resurface.

    As much as I hate to see someone lose their job the poor play by the Cubs again has in my opinion sealed Quade’s fate.  I would be really really surprised to see him back next year. 

    Quade has no business managing this team.  Sweeping change is what this team needs.

    • John_CC

      Surprised if Quads is back?!  I think that 94% of Cubs fandom would simultaneously explode from a collective rage/shock/exhaustion/futility laced scream.

      Sweeping change. Yes. It will certainly happen. The scale of which will be based on who is chosen to head up this change.

  • Neil

    From Jon Heyman: Tom Ricketts had 9-min conf call with Cubs employees. no further shakeup. Hope is Wilken/Fleita stay. Seek young, analytical GM

  • roseyc

    The Cubs can’t start to turn it around until Quade is gone They should fire him now and let Listach manage the rest of the season. They shouldn’t put the pressure on the new GM to fire him They should just strart spring training like come Sept 1st. They play the kids and sit Byrd and Soriano and far as the rotation goes beside Garza and Dempster everybody gets an audition for starting role

  • Tom

    I would go a step farther and say that I am concerned that Quade’s handling of the youngsters on the team is detrimental to their long term development.  I believe it is risky to leave him in control.  He has already demonstrated that he is not the answer for the Cub’s future

    • Mike1040

      I would also hasten to point out that a moron could manage the team and games better than Qless. Thus any coach on the staff could fill in for the rest of the year