Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Mets – 09/09/11

Game One Hundred Forty-Four: Cubs (62-81) vs. Mets (70-73)
Game Time – 6:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet Plus – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – Citi Field, Flushing

Casey Coleman (2-7, 6.61/1.86) vs. Mike Pelfrey (7-11, 4.68/1.45)

The Cubs return to action tonight for the first of three against the Mets in the Big Apple. Following Sunday night’s finale at Citi Field, the Cubs will make their final trip of the season to Cincinnati to wrap up the two-city, seven-game road trip.

The Mets enter play tonight three games under .500 but many are considering this season a successful one for the Metropolitans. Sandy Alderson and manager Terry Collins have dealt with a lot of change, and injuries, during their first season in New York.

The Cubs took two of three from the Mets at Wrigley earlier in the season (May 24 – May 26) with Casey Coleman suffering the only loss in the three-game series.

Darwin Barney was expected to rejoin the team today in New York after going back to Oregon to be with his wife for the birth of their second child. Will Barney be back in the starting lineup or will Mike Quade stick with D.J. LeMahieu? Bryan LaHair has performed in his short time with the big league team. With the lefty Chris Capuano going in game two, will LaHair and Tyler Colvin be in Quade’s starting nine?

In other newsAndrew Cashner should see his first big league action this weekend after spending most of the season on the DL. The Cubs activated Cashner from the 60-day DL earlier in the week and he will pitch out of the pen for the remainder of the season.

The Cubs decided to send Andrew Cashner to the Arizona Fall League to get work in that he lost while on the DL. The AFL season begins on October 4 and Cashner will be one of the starters for the Mesa Solar Sox. The Cubs would like for Cashner to make 4-5 starts this fall then shut it down for the rest of the year. According to a report from Bruce Levine, Cashner will compete for a spot in the rotation next spring. Cashner will report to the Cubs facility in Mesa shortly after the Cubs Convention in January to prepare for the beginning of camp.

Tonight it all begins with Casey Coleman

Casey Coleman has shown improvement over his last two outings and is coming off back-to-back quality starts … with nothing to show for it. Coleman was in line for a rare win at Wrigley in his last start but Carlos Marmol imploded in the ninth. Coleman surrendered two runs, one earned, on six hits in six innings to the Pirates. Coleman walked three and struck out six.

Coleman is 0-1 in his last two starts with a 2.76 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP.

Coleman has performed better on the road throughout his brief Major League career than at Wrigley. Coleman is 2-3 in eight games, seven starts, outside of the Friendly Confines with a 4.93 ERA and a 1.70 WHIP.

Casey Coleman will face the Mets for the second time in his career tonight, first time at Citi Field. One of the worst starts of Coleman’s career came against the Mets earlier this year. Casey lasted just 1 1/3 innings back on May 25 and the Metropolitans put up six runs on seven hits.

Jason Bay (1-for-1), Willie Harris (0-for-2 with a walk), Jason Pridie (1-for-1), Jose Reyes (1-for-2), Josh Thole (1-for-2) and Justin Turner (0-for-1) are the only Mets on the active roster with limited plate appearances against Casey Coleman.

Mike Pelfrey is coming off a rough, short outing against the Nationals. Pelfrey gave up three runs on five hits in 4 2/3 innings. Pelfrey tied a season-high with five walks (June 30 in Detroit, other five-walk performance) and struck out just three batters.

Pelfrey struggled in August to the tune of a 1-2 record in seven games, six starts, with a 5.08 ERA and a 1.75 WHIP. Pelfrey has walked nearly as many batters (20) over his last 38 1/3 innings than he has struck out (22). If the Cubs can show any patience tonight, Pelfrey will help them out.

The Cubs did not face Mike Pelfrey back in May and the Mets’ former first round pick has not lost to the Cubs in two career outings … 2-0 in two starts with a 0.60 ERA and a 0.80 WHIP (one run on eight hits in 15 innings with four walks and 11 strikeouts in 15 innings).

Jeff Baker (2-for-9), Marlon Byrd (0-for-3), Blake DeWitt (3-for-5 with a triple), Koyie Hill (1-for-2), Carlos Pena (0-for-3), Aramis Ramirez (0-for-6), Alfonso Soriano (1-for-3 with a double) and Geovany Soto (1-for-3 with a double) are the only Cubs with limited at bats against Mike Pelfrey.

Cubs Photography
The CCO recently received an email from FishEyeVertigo.com about passing on info about some pretty cool Chicago photographs … created in a unique way.

FishEyeVertigo-Wrigley.jpg

For more info, including how the final photographs are assembled, please visit FishEyeVertigo.com

Stadium Journey – Wrigley Field
StadiumJourney.com publishes reviews of pro and college stadiums and recently posted their review of Wrigley Field. Paul Swaney emailed the CCO and thought our readers would be interested in reading their review of the Friendly Confines.

Take a minute and read Stadium Journey’s review of ‘Wonderful Wrigley Field

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"The will to succeed is important, but what's more important is the will to prepare." - Bobby Knight
Share on Fancred
  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Castro – SS
    Barney – 2B
    Ramirez – 3B
    Pena – 1B
    Soriano – LF
    Byrd – CF
    LaHair – RF
    Soto – C
    Coleman – P

  • BosephHeyden

    Right now, Casey Coleman is the closest thing they have to a properly developed pitching prospect.  Just keep throwing him out there, let him learn from mistakes he makes, do NOT trade him or turn him into a reliever, and you have a quality fourth or fifth starter.

    On that note:  I fully expect Quade to send him to the pen in favor of Ortiz should he fail again.

    • Bryan

      Boseph…I’d be careful.  Some on this site I’m sure will point out that Casey Coleman has had an ample sample size already in both the minors (and now majors) to prove that he’s worthless…so please just throw him in the trash with Colvin.  But your point is well taken. 

      • cubtex

        Let’s keep pounding in Casey Coleman’s head that….he is good enough….he is strong enough…..and gosh darnet…people like him and you will see great results! Never mind that he has mediocre stuff and he has the 2nd worse ERA in all of baseball for starting pitchers with 13 or more starts. See…in baseball and in business..you need to be SELF confident and SELF motivated. All the rest is temporary. If a salesman doesn’t produce…all the….Get em next time…will only last so long. It is a world of production in sports and business.

        • BosephHeyden

          In his defense, that second-worst ERA in baseball is partially due to the fact he had an inept GM and still has an inept manager who thought it would be a good idea to throw him between the majors, the bullpen, and the minors multiple times in a season.

        • Bryan

          Just glad you don’t work in my business.

          • cubtex

            me too. I don’t tolerate mediocrity for my salespeople. I do require my salespeople to set goals and to attend motivational seminars from time to time….but they need to be self motivated. I am not a babysitter or hand holder. Do your job and I will treat you well. Just like in sports!

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

        Actually I have been one of guys screaming about how the Cubs are ruining Coleman all year just so you know. That being said I also understand why it happened. We did not have the depth to take the double Wammy of injuries which is all on Hendry. Coleman should have been in triple A till June working on his stuff and getting his head right. Instead he was doomed to fail as a quick fix. The taxi squad thing is hard on everyone. Some guys can over come it, some of them can not.

  • paulcatanese

    I think I would have sat Barney tonight, gone with LeMahieu (and I’m a Barney fan) Definatly gone with Campana in center over Byrd. Seems the vets are voicing their displeasure with Qua about all the rookies out there . And of course he caves in.

    • Cheryl

      Agree with sitting Barney, it would have done him some good. But glad to see LaHair is in again.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

        Barney sat on Weds so if he wants to play so be it. Having Byrd in there with Lahair and Soriano could back to really hurt us because of Byrds lack of range in center.

  • Larry

    As bad as Byrd and Soriano have been with the bases loaded, or just with runners in scoring position this year, I was kind of hoping that Quade would pinch hit for them in the first. I know it would never happen, but it would have given the Cubs a better chance to score.

  • gary3411

    Coleman just threw 94mph straight as an arrow. Has he been working in a 4-seamer lately? Or is this completely new? Feel like I’ve already seen a few this game, but definitely noticed that last one just off the outside corner. Could be a good weapon/mixup for him to keep hitters offbalanced.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Pena #27

  • diehardcubfan

    I think we may have a new RF next year if LaHair keeps this up.  Colvin could be the odd man out. 

    • gary3411

       He better produce his AAA numbers if he’s going to play right field for us. Can only afford his defensive liabilities if he absolutely mashes. Rather see him at first with Pena bye bye.

      • diehardcubfan

        One can only hope Pena will go bye bye but until the new GM gets on board and does a full assessment we will have to wait.

  • Dorasaga

    What about Coleman or Colvin again?… btw., Castro flashed some good leather the last inning.

    Richard, I hope you didn’t find this as a disagreement, but rather a stress of other fundamentals that I guess we all want to see the Cubs work on…:
    http://chicagocubsonline.com/archives/2011/09/cubsrambling_23.php#comment-306028479

    I hope someone bought that MiLB.tv can tell us what you saw from the Smokies playoff.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

      Totally agree with your assessment of the our club and actually a lot of clubs in that regard. Colvins defense will actually get better with playing time. No one is suggesting other wise. What I am saying is that he is exactly what has been wrong with the Cubs for a long time. Fans jump on what a prospect can do (in Colvins case it is hit HR’s) not what he needs to do ( hit for average get on base play good defense) to be successful. If Colvin was Rob Deer I would still be questioning why he is playing (for all you young fans http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/d/deerro01.shtml ).

      • Dorasaga

        Wow, those strikeouts that led the league… LOL

        By the way, again, I know this debate will never exhaust, but boy, you watch Castro plays, it’s simply amazing. I still don’t know if he should be moved to third base or not, with that range and instinct… hmm…

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

    For everyone that thinks we over spent on Soriano (which we did), please look at Jason Bay’s numbers .242,12 HRs 15 million dollars. 3 more years as well.

    • Demitri

      That is only for five years tho. Bad deal, not as bad as ours

    • Ripsnorter1

      Can someone show me a good FA deal?

      Every last one of them results in at least a 25% fall off in production.

      • cubtex

        CC Sabathia

        • Ripsnorter1

          Yup. 

      • GaryLeeT

        I think the Teixeira and Sabathia FA signings by the Yanks were good ones. And even though A, Gonzales deal was technically a trade and extension, it was money well spent. Then, there are the Phills, and what they did to land, then extend Lee & Halladay to make them the best team in baseball. I get pissed that a large market team like the Cubs always seems to miss the boat, but there are other teams just like them (Dodgers & Mets) in the same boat. Except for the 103 years without a WS thing, of course.

  • Dorasaga

    Overall, defensively and baserunning-wise, that was an ugly inning. I also hope Castro can play tomorrow.

    • Cheryl

      Shouldn’t have pulled LaHair. He might have been need later. Campana could have run for asomeone else.

      • diehardcubfan

        Remember, Quade is managing here.  There is no room for baseball sense.

        • Cheryl

          How right you are!

        • Dorasaga

          :-(

    • paulcatanese

       Have been fighting my MLB connection all night and didnt get to see the game, what happened with Castro?

  • diehardcubfan

    Good job by Cashner on his first outing back.

    • Dorasaga

      And what could Castro do? He’s the best hitter on the Cubs roster, but he could not garner more than 60 RBI and not even top 50 on runs compared to the league, while there’s no one on-base around him.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Nice going by Mr. Blown Save Himself, Sean Marshall. 

    6-6 record. Not so hot.

    • Calicub

      the pen blows another one for coleman…

      I anxiously await Neils headline.

      Would it be fair to ask that the Cubs completely clear their outfield of ‘vets’ this off-season or at least byrd and either soriano or R.J.? And then come ST put BJAX in CF and have Campana Colvin LaHair and Soriano/R.J./Montonez(in the case both Soriano is moved and RJ not resigned) compete for LF and RF?

      We know Colvin is an ineffective bench player and if he is not ready to mash come ST I will relent and agree its time to dump him.  He’s on a short leash.

      If told he would not play unless he preformed every night would either force Soriano to step it up or step down to a lesser role.  I feel the Cubs will move him though. Here’s to hoping for 30 HR for him come season end.

      Either way the competition turned out those 5 would have potential for good things…

      BJAX
      Castro
      ARAM
      Pena- you know he’s coming back
      LaHair
      LeMeiheu
      Soto
      Pitcher
      Campana

      Bench:
      Soriano  Montonez/R.J.(most likely with this year)   Barney   Clevenger Baker

      • Calicub

        not that he would have gotten the win anyway

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

        Montonez won’t be here. He was a one year AAAA player. If he signs back it will be to be the same as he was this year Insurance at Triple A. He seemed to play very well off the bench for us earlier in the season though.

        I do have to ask a question though. What have you seen in Campana that makes you think he is a starter? I don’t know yet. I have not seen anything that makes me think he is. Not saying he isn’t just that we need run producers and he has not shown that ability yet.

        • cubtex

          Campana is a very valuable bench player if used properly. They need to keep him available to pinch run late in a close game where he can use his speed to get in scoring position. I think there is a place for him on the roster.

        • paulcatanese

          A starter, dont know Richard, but each and every time he is in a game something happens, good or bad It happens. Couldnt watch the game tonight but saw where he ran for LaHair, did he try to steal? Soto popped
          up so I dont know what the count was. And getting hit by DeWitt’s ground ball dont know how but no double play. Not giving him credit for that as I didnt see the play, but it has been done. Over the last few times he has hit the ball he has hit it hard, and pulled it hard. I dont know Richard, a full time player, I would love to see it tried for a while to see what happens.

          • cubtex

            I would like to see a brand new outfield next year if the new gm is able to move Soriano and Byrd. I think BJax is the frontrunner for one of the spots but I would like to see some new blood. I mentioned before that if the Cubs could move Z to the Mets for Jason Bay and cash(to even out the money) I would take a flyer on Bay at Wrigley. He had a great year at Fenway the year before he went to that huge park in New York. A change of scenery would definately do wonders for Bay.

          • paulcatanese

            Bay is a pretty good player,and from what I saw of him he is a low key player that hustles and is not a prima donna and has had some good streaks, I think he wood be a viable option.

          • Cheryl

            No doubt Bay is viable but would the Mets even be interested in Z? I’m trying not to get my hopes up for LaHair but if he continues like this he could play almost every day in the outfield and at first base. He would be a good option for four years until whoever makes it among the draftees becomes the first basemen. Pena will be looking for a multi-year deal and he probably won’t remain with the cubs.  Rather than spend the money on a first baseman it seems like they should concentrate on pitching.

          • diehardcubfan

            Agree, I cannot see how anyone would be interested in Z.  He is just not worth the gamble.  If someone would have thought that they would have traded for him before the trade deadline and his meltdown.

            I believe Zs career is pretty much over.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Richard-Hood/100000706523521 Richard Hood

            It matters the organization with Zambrano. I imagine there are 4 or 5 teams that are going man if we got that guy we could straiten him out. Like say the Nat’s or any team Ozzie ends up on. Z has value this is not a Carlos Silva situation where his attitude is huge and his talent is gone. His temper has just shot by his talent. I think the Cubs may have to eat half the money for him to go away.

          • diehardcubfan

            I will have to disagree with you here.  Z is not emotionally mature enough and his talent is gone.  He has not evolved and based on velocity his fastball is getting slower.  He has not learned how to pitch. 

            I would also argue that since Z did not go to the Yankees with Larry R as pitching coach that there is some underlying reason why and that is because he is a bomb waiting to go off again and he just has gotten it and will not because he refuses to listen. 

            Z will not be anything better now then a 4 or 5 starter and that is not worth the16 million price tag that goes along with his volatile personality.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 5-4 to the Mets Friday nite.

    Casey Coleman: 4R, 8H, 0BB, 5K, 5IP; Starlin Castro: 2-for-4; Pena: 1-for-3, HR, 2RBI, BB; Bryan LaHair: 1-for-2, 3B, RBI, BB

  • paulcatanese

    Brian LaHair, what has he been in three games? He has hit for the cycle total in those games. I have yet to see what gives him the reputation of being bad defensively so I cannot comment on that. Granted he is a little deliberate approaching the ball but maybe he is trying to be sure. He looks like his bat may be the real deal, so I hope the defense is going to be not as predicted.