Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Padres – 09/28/11

Game One Hundred Sixty-Two: Cubs (71-90) vs. Padres (70-91)
Game Time – 7:35pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WCIU – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187
Location – PETCO Park, San Diego

Ryan Dempster (10-13, 4.53/1.43) vs. Wade LeBlanc (4-6, 4.83/1.44)

This is itthe Cubs final game of the 2011 season.

The long journey that began in February in Mesa comes to an end tonight with game 162. Q’s Cubs ended their three game losing streak on Tuesday night with a solid win over the Padres and will shoot to finish the season 18 games below .500. The Cubs are 3-2 against the Friars with one left to play. A win tonight would also give Q’s Cubs a winning record for the second month in a row and a .500 road trip to end the season. After posting a 16-13 record in August, the Cubs are 12-12 in September.

Ryan Dempster should reach his goal of 200 innings for the season tonight in what could be his final game with the Cubs … Dempster is 3 1/3 innings short of 200 for the fourth season in a row. Dempster could elect free agency instead of exercising the option that would pay him $14 million in 2012 … reports in recent days have suggested Dempster could land a three to four year contract on the open market worth $9 – $10 million per season.

Look for Mike Quade to run out his right-handed lineup with the left-hander on the hill for the Padres. Reed Johnson, Jeff Baker and Luis Montanez could be making their final appearances in a Cubs’ uniform tonight.

Not only could tonight be Dempster’s final game as a Cub but Aramis Ramirez figures to sign elsewhere in the off-season … and tonight should be the last game for Mike Quade as the skipper of the Chicago Cubs.

Starlin Castro reached base for the 39th game in a row on Tuesday night and extended his hitting streak to 10 games. Can Castro close out his first full year in the big leagues by reaching base safely in his last 40 games?

For the last time this season … it all begins with Ryan Dempster.

Ryan Dempster is just 3 1/3 innings short of reaching 200 for the fourth season in a row. Dempster has not posted a win since August 11 and the Cubs are 4-6 in his last 10 starts. Despite what the mainstream media will say prior to tonight’s start, Ryan Dempster has not pitched as good as the box scores may indicate. Dempster has struggled with his command, put his team in early holes and walked too many batters.

In his last ten starts, Dempster is 2-5 with a respectable 3.61 ERA but with a 1.46 WHIP (33 walks and 58 hits in 62 1/3 innings) … just too many baserunners. Over his last five starts, Dempster is 0-3 with a 3.34 ERA and a 1.58 WHIP, teams are hitting .272.

Ryan Dempster is 4-5 in 15 road starts this year with a 5.51 ERA and a 1.63 WHIP.

Dempster did not face the Friars back in April and is 8-4 in 21 career games, 12 starts, with a 3.73 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP … at PETCO Park, 1-1 in six games, two starts, with a 3.63 ERA and a 1.15 WHIP.

Padres Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster

  • Jason Bartlett – 1-for-3
  • Kyle Blanks – 0-for-3
  • Chase Headley – 0-for-7 with 3 walks
  • Jeremy Hermida – 1-for-6 with a walk
  • Orlando Hudson – 0-for-7 with a walk
  • Nick Hundley – 1-for-6 with a home run
  • Cameron Maybin – 1-for-3
  • Will Venable – 1-for-3

The Cubs will get their first look at Wade LeBlanc tonight in the season finale. The 26-year old southpaw is coming off a loss to the Dodgers in which he allowed two runs on four hits without a walk and a career-high 10 strikeouts. LeBlanc has been very, very good of late and will be extremely tough on the impatient Cubs offense … especially on the last day of the season.

LeBlanc is 2-2 in his last four starts with a 4.18 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP … since the break, 4-4 in 10 starts with a 4.74 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP.

Wade LeBlanc has never faced the Cubs in a regular season game and only four players on the Cubs active roster have at bats against the southpaw … Jeff Baker (0-for-1), Blake DeWitt (3-for-5 with a home run and a walk), Reed Johnson (0-for-3) and Carlos Pena (0-for-3).

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball for the last time in Twenty-Eleven …

Quote of the Day

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow." - Albert Einstein
Share on Fancred
  • Calicub

    Well I’m looking for the mighty dewitt in right with those numbers…

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Castro – SS
    DeWitt – 2B
    Ramirez – 3B
    Baker – 1B
    Johnson – LF
    Montanez – RF
    Campana – CF
    Hill – C
    Dempster – P

    • Calicub

      Half right…

      Putting campana on right before Mr. 0-34 with runners in scoring position ? Looks like Koyie is on a slary drive! 1 – 35 otta justify an extention imo.

    • gocubs

      Maybe the worst Cubs lineups in the last 10 years.

      • paulcatanese

        Oh I dont know,I have seen quite a few, but this one is pretty close.

      • cubtex

        The one when Coleman pitched was worse.

  • Calicub

    One more post/snappy headline and the season’s done! Enjoy your offseason Neil.

    You deserve a bacation.

    I meant vacation but a bacon vacation would be awesone too.

    Maple, Smoked, thick cut, pepper crusted. Man I’m hungry!

  • jfish1219

    let us all rejoice in what will hopefully be the last game EVER “managed” by the q-ball

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tom Ricketts is at PETCO to address team

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    With one game remaining, the Cubs are the only team in MLB to have not hit a grand slam this season.

    • paulcatanese

      Well ,load them up ro Tony. And Neil, nice year enjoyed every 1280 times I visited the site, cant wait for the rainy season and the daily stuff on the site.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Bruce Levine: Owner Tom Ricketts saying his good byes to the players.

    • studio179

      There should be a lot of goodbyes to say.

      • paulcatanese

        Getting old, took three times to get it, but its a good one.

  • Aaron

    I want to kick around a few ideas for next year…

    The Cubs need to cut ties with the following players on the 40-man (either via trade, DFA, or not resigning them):

    Zambrano
    ARAM (now that we know he doesn’t want to be back, why try to overpay? Just collect the draft picks and move on)
    Soto
    Pena
    DeWitt
    Barney (while his value might be at its peak)
    Soriano
    Byrd
    Johnson
    Hill
    Baker
    Wells
    Dempster (though not likely b/c of NTC)
    Marmol (I admit, this would be selling low, but you HAVE to get rid of him now before he loses all value)
    Lopez
    Ortiz
    Grabow
    Berg
    Caridad
    Schlitter
    Smit

    The Cubs need to add the following players to the active roster (those
    previous moves would create 16 spots on the active roster from where it
    stands now):

    Edwin Jackson
    Vitters
    Castillo
    Logan Morrison
    M. Gonzalez
    Flaherty
    Kubel
    B. Jackson
    Ty Wright
    Clevenger
    LeMahieu
    John Lackey
    Nolasco
    Beliveau
    Cabrera
    Carpenter

    Therefore, your roster would look something like this:

    SP:
    Garza
    E Jackson
    Lackey
    Cashner/Samardzija (whomever steps up in Spring Training and is healthy)
    Nolasco

    PEN:
    Wood
    Marshall
    Cashner/Samardzija
    Carpenter
    Dolis
    Beliveau
    Cabrera

    C-Castillo, Clevenger
    1B-Morrison
    2B-Flaherty
    SS-Castro, M. Gonzalez
    3B-Vitters, LeMahieu
    LF-Kubel
    CF-B. Jackson, Campana
    RF-Colvin, Wright

    I know this is something like my thousandth different suggestion, but I
    wanted to throw a low-cost alternative out there that isn’t necessarily
    all “rookies”.

    Here is how it is accomplished:

    #1:
    Zambrano and Dempster for Morrison and Nolasco
    Why? Zambrano loves Guillen and vice-versa. With Ozzie in South Florida,
    and ARAM (one of Z’s only friends on the team) looking at Miami as a
    destination, it makes a TON of sense to do this. From the Marlins
    perspective, both Morrison and Nolasco have fallen out of favor and need
    a change of scenery. The Cubs would basically be trading Z for Morrison
    and Dempster for Nolasco. Dempster works for the Marlins, because he’s
    already had a fair amount of success early in his career down there, and
    with the Marlins spending big to make a splash in their new stadium,
    his salary would likely work for them, especially with Vazquez likely
    retiring, they need an established innings-eater like Dempster. As for
    the Cubs, it makes sense, because they’d be unloading big salaries, and
    they have a need to get younger in the rotation and they need a young 1B
    that is cost-controlled as well versus over-spending for Pujols or
    Fielder

    #2:
    Soriano for John Lackey
    Why? Soriano has worn out his welcome in Chicago, and needs to be in the
    AL where he can save his legs, and DH. If you noticed, it was when
    Soriano got frequent rest when he came back and had the best results. AL
    teams are certainly taking note, because his power bat would be welcome
    in most lineups in the AL, and with Boston’s short porch, Soriano
    wouldn’t have to cover as much ground in days he has to play in the
    field, plus he could play pepper off the wall in LF whereas most of his
    lazy fly outs to LF this year would end up as doubles off the wall, or
    long singles (if he’s not hustling like usual). Lackey has similarly
    worn out his welcome in Boston where he has 3 years and $46 million. Soriano has 3 yrs $54 million remaining.

    The ONLY free agent signings you’d have to make are Kubel and Edwin Jackson. The Cubs would be saving Z and Dempster’s $18 and $14 million respectively for a total of $32 million while adding Lackey’s $15 million, Nolasco’s $9 million, and Jackson’s likely to get about $12 million/year, so that means an addition for pitching of about $4 million.

    However, since the Cubs would be unloading Soriano’s $18 million, even with Kubel’s signing (likely $6-7 million), they’d still save about $7 million overall.

    That’s the beauty of swapping bad contracts, or trading for guys that don’t fit with their team’s current scheme or payroll situation. Guys like Kubel, Lackey, Jackson, and Nolasco would likely do very well in Cubs uniforms.

    And the Cubs could get even better by unloading Marmol, Byrd, Barney, Wells, and Soto for whatever they can get. They might find a team willing to trade a young starting pitcher for Marmol. How about Marmol to the Dodgers for Billingsley? If they balk at that, then expand it to include some combination of Marmol, Byrd, Barney, Wells, and Soto (not all 4, but some combination of) for Billingsley and Eithier.

    Eithier and Billingsley are getting too expensive for them, especially with a huge extension due to Kemp coming soon, and with the McCourt’s ongoing battle, it makes sense to do a trade like that with them.

    Here’s why a trade like that works. The Dodgers need to replace Broxton (Marmol provides replacement). They need an upgrade at catcher for Barajas, who wasn’t terrible, but is 36 years old next year, and declining (Soto gives upgrade), at 2B for Carroll who had just 16 RBI in 507 plate appearances (Barney gives upgrade), and they could use a guy that could play all 3 OF positions (Byrd provides that at a reasonable cost)…and the Cubs could throw in Wells for good measure if the Dodgers are willing to include a decent prospect, making it a 5-for-3 trade.

    Anyway, just some food for thought….

    • paulcatanese

      Good food for thought. Very cost concious I like that.

    • Spoda17

      Awesome post Aaron… a lot of spaces, but you clearly did your homework.  Nice job.

      • Aaron

        I fixed the spacing issues….sorry about that, and thanks for the props

        • KevininSandiego33

          What do u do if Dempster opts out?

        • KevininSandiego33

          Also instead of Morrison at 1B, why not put him in LF and try to pick up Kendry Morales from the Angels.

    • JimBo_C

      With the Ozzie’s new gravitational pull in south FL and LoMo ticking off Marlins ownership … I was thinking Zambrano and 15 million for LoMo.

    • Brett

      Some really good ideas in there for some cost friendly options. Soriano for Lackey though…. 0% chance. Wouldn’t want Lackey at all and the Red Sox have Ortiz and a full outfield. The Dempster part of the trade has no chance either but AMEN on trying to unload Z for Morrison. Now that Ozzie is there that was one of my 1st thoughts too. With both players out of favor with their current orgs & Ozzies love for big Z…. yes please!

    • cubtex

      I mentioned Logan Morrison and I like that scenario with Nolasco. I would rather get Anibal Sanchez but he would cost more. I think Edwin Jackson will be pricey since the market is slim. Don’t think they should go 4 or 5 years with Jackson. The Red Sox still have Ortiz to DH and Lackey has been so brutal, I would rather give Shark a chance instead of Lackey. How can you really justify Tyler Colvin as a starting right fielder?

      • Aaron

        I can’t justify Colvin anymore….even in spite of his infrequent starts, etc., and overall poor development (Cubs fault)…..I was NOT a fan of the pick in the first place…you can ask Neil about that. When he was drafted, I was like, “what?!?!?!?” It was an overdraft, just like Simpson, but it was worse, because free swingers in college become even worse in pro ball with wood bats…their deficiencies are more magnified.

        I’d love to have Morrison for Zambrano, but I think the wise thing to do is expand the deal to include a pitcher like Nolasco. 

        You’re right about Sanchez….he’d cost a king’s ransom at this point. Lackey in the NL would be intriguing. I refuse to believe Lackey is THAT bad, as he was this year…He’s Dempster-esque at worst, and Zambrano (minus Z’s attitude problems) at best….so he’d be a younger version of Dempster at about the same cost.

  • Spoda17

    My first year on COO… and I must say I have enjoyed the chatter!  Cubs did struggle a smidge (that’s a joke btw)… but aren’t we all used to that.  I would like to see Ryno come back, and get Greg Maddux more involved in the actual on-filed activities… so if the damn Mayan’s are right… this is our last year to win!  So get busy TR… and let’s actually make some smart off season decisions!

    Time for the Cubs and TR to swing the tipping point in the opposite direction. 

  • paulcatanese

    On Ricketts saying goodby to the players, maybe he ought to do it Deniro style from the Al Capone movie , a speech and then the baseball bat at the dinner.

    • studio179

      Yeah, he walked around the table talking about teamwork, then played ball. Might help, can’t hurt. :)

    • Dorasaga

      That’s a good one, from the “Untouchables,” featuring the young and handsome Kevin Costner.

  • studio179

    I am excited this is the last game. Tomorrow starts what should be a very interesting and exciting offseason. It will be a roller coaster ride and I can’t wait!

  • paulcatanese

    I look for Castro to reach 210 tonight, he can do it,

  • paulcatanese

    Best wishes for a speedy recovery to Mrs. Dave Duncan from youre surgery.

  • cubs1967

    last line-up ever for Quade!!

    he should send Jim Essian X-mas card every year becuz w/o him he’d be the worst Cubs mgr ever.

    i expect Ricketts to apologize for this mess and lower tix price by $5 and beer by $1 to make up for this.

    103 yrs and counting………….there is NO grace period.

    p.s.GM by 10-15-11 and Ryno hired by 10-16-11.  Clocks ticking Tommyboy.

    • Ripsnorter1

      Don’t calculate the number of your juvenile poultry before the process of incubation has fully materialized.

      I’ll believe QQuade is gone when I see it.

    • diehardcubfan

      I would love to wake up on Thursday morning to the headlines that Ricketts fired Quade.  That should be the very first act of the offseason. 

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Another one for the Cubs highlight reel …

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    All started with a two-out walk to the pitcher … and Aramis’ misplayed ball. 4-0 Padres

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Another one for the highlight reel … great fundamental inning between the bottom of the third and top of the fourth

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Dempster can’t get the out to take him to 200 innings.

  • Jim_Tinley_Park

    A great moment in cub history.
    RYAN DEMPSTER REACHES 200 INNINGS LOL LOL LOL LOL LOL

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    There is the out Dempster wanted … 200 innings

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Steve Clevenger with his first big league hit

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    DJ at third to start the 6th, Ramirez out …

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Grand slam for Venable … both huge Padres rallies started with two outs and the bases empty

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Ryan Dempster served up a slam to Neil Walker on Opening Day and just served up a slam to Will Venable in the final game of the season.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Dempster ends season with an ERA of 4.80, up
    from last year’s 3.85. ERA was 3.65 in ’09 and 2.96 in ’08

    • Ripsnorter1

      You spell that “REGRESSION.”

      • paulcatanese

        Yeah Rip, but “Demp” got his 200 innings, just as Qua promised him.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Starlin Castro doubled to left in the eighth … 11-game hitting streak, reached
    base safely in last 40 games of season (207 hits).

    • diehardcubfan

      I believe Castro will be the NL MVP in 2014, maybe even 2013 if he continues to improve.

  • cubtex

    Some great games tonight!!! Rays down 7-0 after 7th and cone back to tie. Braves and Phils in extra abd Red Sox up 3-2 in 8th. Great action!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 9-2 to Padres in game 162.

    Ryan Dempster: 9R, 8H (2HR), 4BB, 7K, 5.2 IP; Starlin Castro: 1-for-3, 2B, SAC, RBI; Blake DeWitt: 2-for-4,2B; Steve Clevenger: 1-for-1, 2B, R, HBP

    71-91, 20 games under .500 for Twenty-Eleven

  • jfish1219

    Neil do you know how tiebreakers work with the draft order?

    • Calicub

      you got me by two minutes!

  • Calicub

    so the Cubs Royals and Padres tie for fifth worst record in MLB.  How does this work as far as draft pick goes?

    • jfish1219

      I just posted the same question on twitter if I get a answer I will post it

    • jfish1219

      *If two teams have the same record, the higher draft pick goes to the team that finished with a lower winning percentage in the previous season. per Mlbtr. So with that the Royals will get 5 Cubs 6 Padres 7

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Sorry, I am working on the recap. You are right.If two or more clubs
        finish with identical records, the earlier draft pick is awarded to the team that finished with the worst record from two seasons ago.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Sorry, I am working on the recap. If two or more clubs
      finish with identical records, the earlier draft pick is awarded to the team that finished with the worst record from two seasons ago.

  • jfish1219

    Neil thank you so much for all that you do…as per usual you did a amazing job

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Thank you.

  • paulcatanese

    Ironic the last game of the year Qua does not go platooning. And four of the five hits were by leftys. Campana, DeWitt(2) and Clevenger. I would not have been surprised if Ricketts had something to do with the lineup as most of the guys that played are on the bubble. 

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    What a night for Major League Baseball …

    • brent carmona

      After all the madness tonight I think you should do the recap tomorrow…you deserve the night off. Thanks again for everything neil.

    • paulcatanese

      See below from brent carmona, I second that.

    • Dorasaga

      The Braves game was sad. 14 innings and good effort, but… Can’t say more than: Speechless.

      Papelbon blew it. No one to blame but the Red Sox management not finding proper replacement for all their DLs.

      • studio179

        The Braves went and let the Red Birds get in…as you said…speechless.

        The Red Sox players and Theo now join history…the wrong side of it.

  • studio179

    Ricketts thinks the team can turn it around in a year ‘without a major overhaul’. I hope I hope I am reading this wrong and he is not suggesting the Cubs are a ‘move or two’ away from contending like his former GM said last offseason. 

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/baseball/cubs/ct-spt-0929-cubs-padres-chicago–20110929,0,6846584.story

  • Aaron

    I really hope that whomever the new GM is does NOT bring back the following people:

    Z
    Dempster
    Wells
    Ortiz
    Lopez
    Grabow
    Soto (too expensive now in arbitration…not worth it)
    Hill
    Pena
    Baker
    Johnson
    Soriano
    Byrd

    ….PLUS:
    Quade
    Riggins
    …..and basically the whole staff, except for possibly Jaramillo…..though I’m not even convinced by his expertise anymore, considering the Rangers have done even better with him out of the picture

    Besides the player personnel wish list I posted earlier, my dream team for the Cubs might be this:
    Friedman-GM
    Sandberg or Dave Martinez-manager
    Maddux-pitching coach
    Grace-hitting coach (though, like Maddux, there is absolutely NO indication he’d like to be on the bench as a coach)