Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Cardinals – 09/25/11

Game One Hundred Fifty-Nine: Cubs (70-88) vs. Cardinals (87-71)
Game Time – 1:15pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 186
Location – Busch Stadium, St. Louis

Randy Wells (7-5, 5.09/1.41) vs. Edwin Jackson (12-9, 3.85/1.45 – 5-2, 3.73/1.49)

Four games remain on the Cubs 2011 schedule …

The Cubs will suit up for the final time on Sunday this season … and try to bounce back from Saturday’s loss against the Cardinals. The Cubs gave the Cardinals life in the NL Wild Card race but a win today could make life a little more difficult for Tony LaRussa’s team.

The Cubs have already lost the season series against the Cardinals (5-9) but still have a chance to win a series against their longtime rival … plus with two more wins, the Cubs will guarantee themselves a winning record for final month of the season (11-10 in September). Since July 31, the Cubs are 28-23, five games over .500.

Prior to his last two starts, Randy Wells was in the middle of the best stretch of his big league career. Wells was pitching with confidence and command and barely resembled the pitcher that struggled last season and got off to a bad start this year. Wells needs to finish he season on a positive note with a quality start and a win this afternoon against the Cardinals.

Starlin Castro ran his streak of reaching base safely to 36 games with a 1-for-4 performance on Saturday. Castro has already set the mark for Cubs’ shortstops … Jerome Walton is next on the list. Walton reached base safely in 43 straight in 1989. If Castro runs the table this season, he would be three games short of tying Walton’s mark.

Will Mike Quade run out a lineup today with younger players, such as D.J. LeMahieu and Tony Campana that might give him a better chance to win or will he stick with the vets that have provided virtually the same results all season?

The Cubs are 7-17 on Sundays in 2011 … and today it all begins with Randy Wells.

After one of the best stretches of his career, Randy Wells has come crashing back to reality in his last two starts. The Reds pounded Wells to the tune of five runs on seven hits with two walks and hit two long home runs back on September 15. Cincinnati knocked Wells out in the fifth (4 1/3 innings). Wells did not bounce back against Milwaukee in his last start and gave up five runs on six hits in five innings. Wells was off again, could not locate his changeup and when he did it was flat and extremely hittable.

Randy Wells is 1-1 in his last four starts with a 5.24 ERA and a 1.52 WHIP … but 0-1 in his last two with a 9.65 ERA and a 1.82 WHIP.

Today is an important game for Randy Wells.

Randy Wells has faced his childhood team twice this year and has two no decisions with a 5.68 ERA and a 0.87 WHIP (eight runs on seven hits with four walks, six strikeouts and three home runs allowed in 12 2/3 innings).

Cardinals Career Numbers against Randy Wells

  • Lance Berkman – 3-for-13 with 5 walks
  • Allen Craig – 0-for-3
  • Daniel Descalso – 0-for-2
  • David Freese – 1-for-3 with a home run
  • Rafael Furcal – 4-for-12 with a double, a home run and 2 walks
  • Matt Holliday – 3-for-10 with a double
  • Edwin Jackson – 0-for-2
  • Jon Jay – 1-for-8 with a walk
  • Yadier Molina – 4-for-11 with 2 doubles, a home run and a walk
  • Albert Pujols – 3-for-13 with a double, a home run and a walk
  • Nick Punto – 1-for-1 with a walk
  • Skip Schumaker – 2-for-13
  • Ryan Theriot – 2-for-5 with a double and a walk

Edwin Jackson is coming off a rough outing and a no decision against the Mets. Jackson gave up five runs on nine hits with four walks and four strikeouts in five innings … it was his first bad start since August 3 in Milwaukee (10 runs, eight earned, on 14 hits in seven innings with a walk and six strikeouts). Jackson has given up only three earned runs in a single start once in his previous eight outings and that was to the Cubs back on August 20.

Jackson is 1-0 in his last four starts with a 4.01 ERA and a 1.62 WHIP.

This afternoon will be Edwin Jackson’s fourth start of the season against the Cubs. Jackson made one of the first three in a White Sox uniform. Jackson is 2-1 versus the Cubs this year with a 3.60 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Edwin Jackson

  • Darwin Barney – 2-for-8 with a double
  • Marlon Byrd – 5-for-19 with 3 doubles and a home run
  • Starlin Castro – 3-for-12 with a walk
  • Tyler Colvin – 1-for-5
  • Blake DeWitt – 3-for-8
  • Reed Johnson – 1-for-4 with a double and a walk
  • Bryan LaHair – 0-for-3
  • Luis Montanez – 0-for-2
  • Carlos Pena – 1-for-12 with a triple and 5 walks
  • Aramis Ramirez – 3-for-11 with 2 home runs
  • Alfonso Soriano – 5-for-18 with a double and a home run
  • Geovany Soto – 1-for-11 with a double and 3 walks
  • Randy Wells – 0-for-2

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Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

Quote of the Day

"Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome." - Arthur Ashe
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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

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

  • cubtex

    Why in the world is DeWitt getting another start at 3rd after yesterday’s disaster? I thought we would be seeing LeMahieu for sure today.

    • paulcatanese

      It can only be what I answered to someone last night. Vets, DeWitt is the vet over LeMahieu. Could it be that Qua is seeking approval of other GM’s around baseball? Playing the vets against contenders? I wonder just how many “vets” he would play if the Cubs were already in the playoffs and were facing teams from other divisions that had a chance at post season, would he rest his vets and go with rookies? I would have to say vets,vets vets. Qua in his mind, feels safe with that.

      • Henry

        i don’t understand why he feels safe?  If I was Rickets I would tell him what to do.  Ricketts stresses building from within why does he not back this up by telling Quade the plan!  We don’t care where Quade lands next year as long as he is not managing the Cubs.  If Q can’t handle that then send him packing!!!

        • paulcatanese

          I agree that Ricketts should say what he wants don by Qua, but apparntly he has not. One glaring observation of Qua’s ability to manage was brought out in yesterdays game. A total contradiction in the mind of Qua. He plays vets because he thinks they are the best scenrio to win against contenders, then he completely blows it in the ninth inning by not pulling Marmol or seeing that Marmol is loseing it quickly. So what does Qua do, he stays with the vet and we all saw what happened. If Ricketts does not see what shortcomings that are there, I would venture to say Ricketts is content with Qua and that is what I was saying earlier, Qua may be back next year, if all ot the mistakes hasnt called for his removal before now, and I dread the thought, he may be back, and I wont eat my words because I desparently want him gone.

          • Henry

            Paul, if you are correct and Quade is back next year he looks like a bigger fool than we all know he is.   Why?  Because he should be finding out now what he may have for next year! Instead he is soothing some vet who help put us in the position we are today!  That being said, you are correct there is no guarantee that Q will not be back next year.

          • Brp921

            I think Ricketts has a plan in mind and doesn’t care how the rest of the season unfolds since “Qua’s Cubs” have been out of it sice March 31st. He’s probably starting with a clean house next year and will leave the decisions up to the new guy in charge.

      • Ripsnorter1

        He’s playing YOUR 3B of the future today…..
        Grin and bear it, Cubs fans!

        LOL

    • roseyc

      There is no logic to Quade’s thinking hopefully it will  be over soon

    • The Maven

      C’mon! Everyone knows a right handed hitter can’t hit right handed pitching.   E-V-E-R-Y-O-N-E!

    • Brp921

      You forget who makes out the lineup.

  • cubtex

    To continue the thought on starting pitching ideas for 2012 between Rip and Dorasaga…… I like the idea of Brandon McCarthy from the A’s. I thought of him as well. He has a 3.26 ERA and a 1.1 WHIP. This is the guy the White Sox gave up for John Danks several years ago.

    And Rip….because Edwin Jackson and Randy Wells have similar WHIP’s….does not mean they are the same pitcher. Please! Use your eyes instead of a computer.

    • Ripsnorter1

      We need three new starters for 2012.

      We need pitchers to come to camp IN SHAPE.

      When we project how a new pitcher might perform at Wrigley, we need to assess the effect that pitcher’s ball park had upon their performance, ie, did they pitch in a pitcher’s park, or a hitter’s park?

      2011 is the best year ever for McCarthy. He’s 9-8, 3.62. This is the first year that he’s had an ERA under 4. He pitches much better in the friendly confines of Oakland: 2.65 ERA vs. 3.94 on the road. Has only given up 9 HR in 160 IP this year: excellent. Was hurt a lot in Texas….

      He didn’t fare very well in Texas because the park didn’t suit his style of pitching. It may have a similar effect in Wrigley, esp. when you compare it to Oakland’s pitcher’s park.

      • cubtex

        How did you project Garza to pitch at Wrigley this year? I think you predicted he would give up a ton of homers. Good pitchers adjust. I am not saying that McCarthy is in the same league as Garza…but he is a better option on what is currently on the roster now…Wouldn’t you agree?

      • cubtex

        Actually McCarthy has a 3.26 ERA. 162 IP 160 Hits and only 25 walks. And……he only is making 1 million this year. I would roll the dice on him.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Danks and Gavin Floyd are available. I’d take BOTH if I were the Cubs GM. I think they can both pitch much better once they are away from that old crackpot, Ozzie…..

      • cubtex

        I would take Danks over Floyd…but I would agree. The Cubs need a lot of help to upgrade the rotation.

        • John_CC

          I think I’d take McCarthy over Floyd, and Danks over Floyd.  They are all very similiar. Danks is a big lefty and younger, so that’s his plus.  But he got more this year, and walked more than either or the other two.

          Any of the 3 would be a nice addition to this Cubs staff.

        • Ripsnorter1

          Yes, Danks over Floyd, but like I said, “I’d take both.” 

          McCarthy pitched well this year, but like I said, this is his best year with just 9 wins. He’s had a career high 24 starts, too. He’s been hurt since he got off of the plane in Texas. That trade was a real winner for Keeennnny, but Texas just got skunked on it. How is this for a rotation:

          Garza
          DanksFloyd
          McCarthy
          Dumpster

          Wells in reserve.

          • cubtex

            I still like Cashner in the rotation…but like I said…McCarthy can be had for a much more reasonable salary than Edwin Jackson…. but I like the top  you have but I would put Cashner in there ahead of Wells

    • paulcatanese

      I dont remember where I saw this, but the discussion on the film story of “Money Ball” it was suggested that sabernetics are at least 20% off on their diagnostics and that the human eye say’s differently. And Beane was not all that correct in his analyisis.

  • John_CC

    Who intentionally walks Marlon Byrd?  Why wouldn’t you just put the first pitch off the plate and in the off CHANCE that he does NOT hack at it, then go ahead and walk him?

    • Ripsnorter1

      That’s all the evidence I need to see that Tony LaRussa is slipping badly…..

  • Ripsnorter1

    Wells has pitch well lately…..

  • Ripsnorter1

    Time to talk 2B for 2012….

    Barney ain’t it.2nd half…..
    .242 BA
    .286 OBP (now we’re talking Soriano!)
    .336 slugging
    1 HR
    12 RBI (Marlon Byrd has 22 RBI in the 2nd half….)

    Folks, it ain’t enough. The Cubs do not have enough offense to cover for this.
    Sure, he’s hit .306 in the first half, but the league has adjusted.

    UTILITY MAN.

    Now let’s find us a stick for 2B.

    • Calicub

      DeRosa is back on the market. How would you feel about bringing him back?

      I know he hasn’t done s#!t since leaving the cubs but a) he was on the Giants where he was b) injured for a year and a half and c)didn’t have a regular position to get starts at and has really been lingering in the background.

      I’d be willing to bring him back… The cubs arent going to compete next year so if he could be grabbed on the cheap why not? He could return to the 08 form or he could flop but if he brought himself back his offense would be more than exceptable…

      • Calicub

        plus if need be he could mentor the likes of DJ at 3B and 2B  and Barney at 2B and becoming the utility player that De.-Ro.has so much experience at playing

      • Ripsnorter1

        If Aram leaves, do we have a choice? Who do you want: DeRosa or DeWitt? 

        I’d take DeRosa first. He may pull a Reed Johnson and have a stellar year for us.

        • Calicub

          personally I’d be fine with De Ro at 3B with occasional starts at 2B. He could teach the kids a thing or two about 2B and maybe even give castro a dozen or so starts at 3B with De Ro at 2B…

          Blake DeWitt should be in the minors working on hitting and fielding. At thrid or second. I think he could play 3B at Iowa no? Move Marquez back to SS? I could be wrong about available moves in the minors, I’m sure Brian or someone could break that down better than I. But if he proves that he is able at 2B or 3B slide him in if Darwin or DJ is struggling at 2B or trade him for pitching if not.  He just has no business playing everyday or taking a spot on the bench at the Major level. Although he does have only like 12 RBI’s less than Byrd in half the AB”S

          • John_CC

            NO. This is completely backwards!  DeRosa is Over.  Come on people. I thought we were ready to move forward now. 

      • John_CC

        No thanks.

        • Calicub

          Yeah DeRosa is over with lets go after Omar Vizcuel or however you spell it instead!

          Or what about Casey Blake? winner of “Most Average Player in Baseball”

          Lol..

          But seriously who else is there?

          DeWitt i think we can all agree should not be there.
          ARAM no more than a year but that wont happen
          DJ has no RBI potential.
          Castro but mentioning that is sacrilege to some of you…

          How about the cubs sign Fielder for 1B and Pujols for 3B?
          I’d be up for that…

          That was sarcasm btw.

          • John_CC

            Some of us where on this the other day. I don’t which thread it’s on though.  Micheal Young is available. Castro could be moved (eh Paul!) over and then look for a new SS.  I’d rather give a rookie a chance than go back to DeRosa, or Omar or Blake et al.

          • paulcatanese

            Castro,Castro,Castro, 3b,3b,3b.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    37 games for Castro

  • Ripsnorter1

    The league has adjusted to LaHair……

    • Calicub

      and now we wait to see if he can do the same.

    • Brp921

      If he could have played more when he was first called up we may have seen if he could adjust as well, instead of having to wait until spring training. Three more games is not enouph time.

      • Calicub

        agreed.

        Lots of things have been screwed up by Quade this season…

        But hey at least Clevenger “might” get one start to see how good he is!

        What. a. joke.

  • Calicub

    Cubs Lose! Cubs Lose!

    almost.
    back.
    to 20 games under! woohoo

  • paulcatanese

    Well lets think about this one. (and I am not Monday morning quarterbacking here) as soon as the Cubs had a runner on second and one out, why would Qua put Wells up there instead of a pinch hitter, he K’s and of course Castro makes the clutch hit and the Cubs are ahead. Then with no one warming up when the ldast of the seventh starts Molina bangs one,, tie game, Wells still in, and guess what  the go ahead HR in the last of the 8th,game set match.Wells had 96 pitches coming in to the 8th.He should not have started the 8th and probably not the 7th. Qua outsmarted by the pitchers    again.

    • Calicub

      I agree but i think Q outsmarted himself once again.

      • Brp921

        I’m not sure Q is even smart enouph to outsmart himself…

  • paulcatanese

    Rip, he’s not my third baseman, I would have Campana over there, he could field the ball and run over to first and beat the runner, that would negate any bad throws. (I dont like DeWitt at 3rd,or 2nd.) as it turns out left field was his best defensive position for the year.

  • matthew8510

    campana for lead off next year anyone with me?

    • paulcatanese

      Absolutly with you on that one.

      • Calicub

        I’d rather bjax hit leadoff and campana either hitting second and castro third or castro second and campana ninth.

        Triple steal!!

    • cubtex

      You can’t steal 1st base!

      • Calicub

        Campana at third bjax at second castro at first.

        You steal second third and home.

        also can’t a hitter strike out and steal first if the catcher loses control of the ball? I know its not called a steal but still

        • Calicub

          They would have to get lucky but you never know baseball is a game of mystery and unpredictablity

      • Brp921

        No you can’t, but Campana can get there on a two bounce ground ball.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 3-2 to Cardinals Sunday afternoon.

    Randy Wells: 3R, 6H (2HR), 3BB, 2K, 8IP; Starlin Castro: 1-for-4, RBI; Marlon Byrd: 1-for-3, 2B, R, BB; Geovany Soto: 0-for-3, RBI

    • Calicub

      Marlons gettin hot to end the year!

      That means he’s primed for a stellar 2012 season right?

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        That is the way the Cubs former GM thought.

  • paulcatanese

    At least this was a manly loss, beat by home runs and not walks and wild pitches. But Qua had a hand in both of them.

    • Brp921

      Another example of Quade shutting the barn door after the horse got out.

  • paulcatanese

    Agree, one cannot steal first base, but an extended play for say 10-15 games in a row, for ANY rookie brought up,  may prove differently for one of them. No one would know without more than the one or two spots a week. I watch these games for one reason now, to see when the rookies are allowed to play and what they do. That has been a sparse situation. This comment was meant to reply to Cubtex and I got up here again.

    • cubtex

      I just don’t think Campana can hit enough to play everyday. I love his speed as a role player…….but not a starter.

      • paulcatanese

        Well you may be right about Campana, but wait until he bulks up at camp Hialeha in the off season, pushing horses out of his way.

      • Brp921

        I’d like to see if he could learn to get on base consistently with his speed. I think eventually he could do this by bunting, hitting tweener groundballs , intimidating infielders into hurrying their throws and generally just getting the scrappy hits. Just think how valuable a player he could be, if he does this. A single, a walk, a dropped third strike, a one hop throw to first would be the same as a double or a triple.