Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Marlins – 04/18/12

Game Twelve: Cubs (3-8) vs. Marlins (5-6)
Game Time – 6:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 187/905
Location – Marlins Park, Miami

Matt Garza (1-0, 1.23/0.75) vs. Mark Buehrle (0-2, 3.65/1.38)

Dale Sveum will turn to Matt Garza tonight to put an end to the team’s three-game losing streak. The Cubs dropped another game Tuesday night in which they had a lead in but could not tack on and put away. With the limited offense, the Cubs simply do not have any room for error right now and have to play mistake-free ball in order to win games.

Geovany Soto is expected back in the lineup and with Mark Buehrle on the hill look for Jeff Baker and Reed Johnson in the staring nine as well. Will Joe Mather get a start? Will Dale Sveum stick with Marlon Byrd?

As for the bullpen, if the Cubs have a lead late in the game, which relievers will Dale Sveum use to get to Carlos Marmol? Rafael Dolis figures to be unavailable after a long outing Tuesday, so that would leave Shawn Camp, Lendy Castillo, Rodrigo Lopez and James Russell as the bridge to Marmol.

Tonight all begins with Matt Garza

Matt Garza is coming off a tremendous start against the Brewers and within his own throwing error of tossing his first complete game shutout in a Cubs’ uniform. Garza dominated a Brewers’ lineup for 8 2/3 innings that was only missing Aramis Ramirez. Garza allowed just three hits, walked two and struck out nine. Garza also ran up his pitch count so look for him to be on a reduced pitch count tonight.

Garza makes his first start outside of Wrigley tonight. Garza, like Dempster, struggled on the road compared to the way he pitched at home a year ago. Garza posted a 4-5 record in 14 road starts with a 4.56 ERA and a 1.46 WHIP.

Matt Garza owns a 3-1 record in five career starts against the Marlins with a 3.90 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP … last season, Garza started one game and received a no decision after tossing seven innings of shutout ball (six hits, three walks and six strikeouts).

Marlins Career Numbers against Matt Garza

  • Emilio Bonifacio – 2-for-4
  • John Buck – 3-for-12 with two doubles and a walk
  • Greg Dobbs – 1-for-3
  • Omar Infante – 3-for-5 with a triple and a walk
  • Austin Kearns – 1-for-5
  • Logan Morrison – 0-for-2 with a walk
  • Hanley Ramirez – 3-for-14 with a triple, a home run and a walk
  • Jose Reyes – 1-for-4
  • Gaby Sanchez – 2-for-7 with a walk
  • Giancarlo (Mike) Stanton – 2-for-6 with a home run and a walk

Mark Buehrle always stepped up his game in Interleague play when the White Sox faced the Cubs and it should be more of the same tonight. Buehrle has dominated the Cubs over the last few seasons and if the free-swinging Cubs’ lineup is not patient tonight, the veteran southpaw will once again have a field day.

Buehrle could easily be 2-0 instead of 0-2 if he received any run support. Both games he’s lost has been by a 4-0 and 3-1 final. The Phillies managed three runs on eight hits (two home runs) against Buehrle in his last time out. Tonight is the vets first start at his new home ballpark.

Mark Buehrle is 5-4 in 13 career starts against the Cubs with a 4.15 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Mark Buehrle

  • Jeff Baker – 2-for-6
  • Marlon Byrd – 4-for-15
  • Starlin Castro – 1-for-6
  • David DeJesus – 14-for-78 with two doubles, a home run and three walks
  • Reed Johnson – 11-for-30 with three doubles
  • Alfonso Soriano – 7-for-37 with a double, two home runs and a walk
  • Geovany Soto – 2-for-10 with a double and a walk

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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Quote of the Day

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  • Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Johnson – RF
    Barney – 2B
    Castro – SS
    Soriano – LF
    Baker – 1B
    Stewart – 3B
    Soto – C
    Byrd – CF
    Garza – P

  • Chadaudio

    Byrd starts again!… and here I thought Sveum liked Mather.

    Maybe Mather also has a secret shoulder injury :)

    • Tedtop16

      Soto and Byrd. Sveum hasn’t got much to work with here.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Soto kills LHP. 

        • Zonk

          I looked it up….career OPS of .929 vs. LHP

          That is good

  • Ripsnorter1

    Let’s see….Buhrle throws LH, but he has been very successful vs the Cubs with a 1.82 ERA…..Why not give Mather a shot at him instead of Stewart?

    Ans: defensive reasons, I suppose.

    • Zonk

      Stewart’s career OPS vs LHP is actually only 27 points less than vs. RHP.  He doesn’t have a pronounced split vs. Lefties.

      Buehrle’s split is almost exactly the same LH or RH.  It doesn’t seem to matter much for him.  

      For much of his career, Buehrle has pretty much gotten everyone out.  I respect him. 

      • Ripsnorter1

        I don’t love Buhrle in that his WHIP is high. He always gives up more H than IP.

        FACT: 2002 was the last time he gave up fewer H than  IP…..

        But his secret is to limit the BBs and the HRs. He averages 2 BBs per 9 IP, and less than 1 HR per 9 IP.

         So I don’t respect him all that much….

      • John_CC

         Good points Zonk, and I much prefer letting the everyday players play no matter which side they hit from.

  • Tom U

    Tonight’s minor league starters:

    Peoria – Jose Rosario (1-1, 5.23)
    Daytona – Dallas Beeler (0-0, 1.64) Game 1
                   Dae-Eun Rhee (1-0, 3.00) Game 2 projected
    Iowa – Jay Jackson (1-0, 4.66)

    Tonight’s spotlight game: Tennessee v. Huntsville, Game 2
    If the projection is correct and Dae-Eun Rhee is the starter, Tennessee fans could be in for a treat. Last season, Rhee dominated in double-header games, often going the distance and posting double-digit strikeouts. 

  • Zonk

    Congratulations to Jamie Moyer, the oldest winning pitcher in baseball history, at 49!  An inspiration to all of us who are middle-aged.

    I wish we could wipe out the gimmicky appearances by Paige and Minoso, because I consider Moyer to be the oldest “real” player in ML history

  • Ripsnorter1


    The Pirates Closer is Juan Cruz??????

    • Zonk

      We’ll see how that works for them.

      On second thought, we could actually use Juan Cruz right now.  I’m serious.  That’s how bad it’s going to get in our bullpen this year……

      • Ripsnorter1

        Two saves in two days. 

        Seems to work pretty good. 

        Cruz always had a good arm. But look at his picture on ESPN, and man, he looks 45.
        Where did that birth certificate come from?

  • John_CC

    Byrd is completely lost. That was one of the worst swings I’ve ever seen. 

    • brent carmona

      I’m glad I’m listening on the radio and not watching. I think with the weight loss and beaning last year his confidence is shot. Sveum probably has to play him because he needs to be used as trade bait, but I don’t know how the chain of command works.

    • paulcatanese

      Total defense on his part, it almost hit him. Just when one thinks he can’t get any worse he proves otherwise.

  • Neil

    Garza with a walk and then a two-run shot by Donnie Murphy

  • daverj

    I know it’s a lefty/righty thing, but playing Baker over LaHair to take advantage of the righty/lefty match up makes no sense to me for this team.  We know who Baker is and what he brings to the table.  We don’t know about LaHair.  Sveum should throw LaHair out there every day and see what happens against lefties … am I missing something?

  • cubs1967

    ok……let’s talk the real team…….Iowa…..

    why is vitters batting 8th?

    • Tom U

      I can just guess at this. Vitters is the youngest hitter in Iowa, and its only his first Triple-A experience. He has a reputation for clutch hitting, but doesn’t have the experience that Rizzo and Castillo have. Putting him down in the line-up can give him some opportunity to do what he does best, drive in runs. It also takes offensive pressure off of him until he’s had some time to adjust. Just thoughts, who know if its right.

      • cubs1967

        thank you……..good guess./makes sense.

        hopefully they move him up as the year goes on….if he continues to hit..

        • Tom U

          My pleasure

  • John_CC

    7-0! what the hell happened? I sat down to eat dinner…

  • Ripsnorter1

    Randy Wells is working hard to prove Jed right:  9:42 ERA in 3 starts. 

    Way to go, Randy!

    • Zonk

      I think Randy Wells is moving from semi-valuable 5th starter type to complete washout.  It’s early, but much more of this and a DFA is not out of the question.

  • cubtex

    Do you hear that sound? Televisions are turning off WGN all over Chicagoland.

    • Ripsnorter1

      That was the “die-hard Cubs’ fans” dying hard.

    • paulcatanese

      Right , they are sad,sad ,sad. I turned it back to “House Marathon”.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Scott Maine….6 IP….2 HBP….2 BB…..

    Yeah. Control may not be the best….

    • Zonk

      He really isn’t the answer.  Fact is, nobody in Iowa is.  We just need someone to not embarass us this year. 

  • cubtex

    Lendy Castillo is definately overmatched. I wanted him to make this team…..but he is like a deer in headlights.

  • John_CC

    Maybe if  Starlin left a couple the necklaces in his locker he would have had the vertical to get that blooper!

    What is with ball players and all those goofy necklaces?

    • Dorasaga

       Influence from R&B as a result of urbanization, players moving to big towns and conformed, methinks.

      • John_CC

         Granted I do not live in a city or have much exposure to urbanity at all, I just don’t see very many young men with such silly looking chains. Look at Hanley.  Guys like Garza, Beckett, etc have been wearing those thick braided things for years. I’ve always just wondered, what the heck? 

        Not that I’m a fashionista or that I really care. Just an observation during another otherwise hard to pay attention to ballgame.

        • paulcatanese

          What happened to the rule for pitchers not to wear anything that could distract hitters?

          • Tony_Hall

            They still don’t allow it (most of the time) with the kids.  I have a few players who wear the thick braided things and have been told to have them removed. 

    • Ripsnorter1

      You are right on the money. 

  • cubtex

    Remember all that talk this winter by many on here that this team would be fun to watch????? Well……How many are enjoying this team so far?

    • Ripsnorter1

      Party pooper.

    • Neil

      Please, there is no reason for a question like that. Thank you.

      • cubtex

        Sorry Neil. Just frustrated watching this! I apologize.

        • Neil

          Thank you … and I understand the frustration.

  • jw


    • cubtex

      65-97. It is hard to lose 100 games.

      • cubs1967

        it’s also hard to be this bad…..or be worse than a quade/JH effort; but theo did it……….62-100… we come.

    • Zonk

      SI predicted 66-96.  That seems about right.

      Our early schedule is brutal; Nats, Cards, Brewers, Marlins, all pretty good teams.  We’ll even it out when we play the Pirates and Astros alot in May/June.  But this is going to be a bad year.  It was predicted. 

      We have to focus on a) what young talent are we developing for later, and b) another year of payroll dumping. 

      Between shedding bad contracts and new TV deal post-2014, Cubs will be massive spenders; just watch.

      • jw

        Thanks for putting things in perspective!

  • Neil

    Cubs pounded 9-1 by Marlins Wednesday night

    Matt Garza: 6R, 7H(2 HR), 3BB, 7K in 5+ IP; Jeff Baker: 2-for-4, 2B, R; Starlin Castro:  1-for-3; Darwin Barney: 1-for-4

  • cc002600

    so don’t you just wonder what is going through Theo’s mind right about now ??

    • cubtex

      How about….Thank god the Cubs gave me a 5 year deal this year because I would have been out of a job if I stayed with Boston for another year.

      • Ripsnorter1

        Boston is a complete wreck this year. HORRIBLE SHAPE. 

        • cubtex

          Exactly. That is what I meant. I can’t imagine they would have re-signed him after this year and he would have been out of a job. He has got to feel pretty lucky the Cubs pursued him after last season.

          • Ripsnorter1

            They would have fired him at the end of 2011. He was already persona non grata.

      • Aaron

         Normally I would say that’s a semi-ridiculous comment, because they haven’t been in control that long, but like I’ve said all offseason, “trust, but verify”, and what I’ve seen is that Hoyer and Epstein are NOTHING like they were in Boston.

        From the players they’ve released/traded/signed, etc., it’s like they COMPLETELY forgot how to build a winning team.

        While Anthony has taken the Klafcyznski thing to a ridiculous level, his point is still valid….What the hell were they thinking? You have got to be kidding me if you think guys like Bonne, Eduardo Gonzalez, etc. in the lower minors deserved to be a part of this organization over him.

        I guess I’m a little biased about it, since I had him as my “sleeper” of the draft, but if you read the scouting reports, and firsthand accounts of the kid by AzPhil, you’ll see a guy that was on the verge of breaking out…even this spring.

        And if they really were planning on simply trading the likes of Baker, DeWitt, Maholm, DeJesus, and Johnson at the deadline, let me assure you that there were PLENTY of other guys on the market that signed 1 year deals, and would’ve brought far more in return at the deadline than those jokers.

        Consider E. Jackson, Damon, Gomes, Andruw Jones, and hell, even McLouth, and you see there were plenty of guys out there that signed one year deals…with only Jackson in that group earning more than  $2 million…..

        I’m not saying all of them will have tremendous seasons, but what I AM saying is that they will have better years than the group of veterans the Cubs signed/re-signed.

        The Cubs will wind up having to give away Baker, DeWitt, Johnson, and Maholm at the deadline…..assuming they even want to get rid of them.

        It’s like Hoyer and Epstein caught Jim Hendry disease when they took over, because while their moves have been “buy low” types, and in a rebuilding year, you have to understand that….yet, as I said, the others available were far better options to get a return on at the deadline….just sayin’

        • Ripsnorter1

          This was a negative post. 

          • Aaron


  • Aaron

    Hello Nail….meet Coffin….that is the sound of the Cubs season being over just 12 games into it, 6 games under .500 and about to be 6 games out of 1st if the Cards hold on.


  • paulcatanese

    The height of optimism was the last of the eighth inning and the Marlins had a runner on third with one out, The Cubs had the infield in to cut off a run. Why? I know its the right play, but any errant ground ball scores the runner and puts another on.
    At that point, play back get an out period.
    If that is supposed to be by the book(and it is) then why not play the best you have from the beginning of the game? Contradictive.
    A positive though, no errors tonight.

  • Mgripken

    I have seen enough.

    Why are Reed Johnson, Jeff Baker, Marlon Byrd and Joyce DeWitt getting any at bats? This is supposed to be a rebuilding year. The kids should be playing every day, without exception.

    Here is what needs to be done right now:

    Play LaHair at 1b everyday, vs lefties and righties

    Play Joe Mather in CF everyday 

    Cut/Trade Reed Johnson: bring up Campana

    Cut/Trade Joyce DeWitt: bring up Adrian Cardenas

    Cut/Trade Jeff Baker: bring up Luis Valbuena

    Cut/Trade Rodrigo Lopez: bring up Randy Wells

    Move Kerry Wood to radio booth/team ambassador: bring up Blake Parker

    Move LaHair to LF and trade/release Soriano.

    These moves can be made now and preapre us for the future.
    Playing Jeff Baker, Joyce DeWitt and Reed Johnson does not help us win in 2014.

    July 2012 Moves:

    Try and trade Garza, Marmol, Dempster and anyone else who won’t be here in 2014 for the best prospects you can get.

    Leave Rizzo and Jackson in minors until July then bring up and play everyday.

    Not that hard, PLAY THE KIDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Ripsnorter1

      Don’t laugh…but Ricketts and Theo and Jed and whoever else exists in the Front Office are trying to keep the seats filled. Cutting Soriano, and moving Kerry Wood off of the roster is going to hurt attendance. The Cubs needs their “star power.” 

    • OttawaBob

      you’re hired, when can you start! lol.

    • Tony_Hall

      Keep in mind, that most of the kids have never played a 162 game schedule.  That keeping some of them in the minors, they can control their play more, and can bring them up and give them 2,3, even 4 months exposure to the big leagues, while not making them run out of gas like Barney did last year.  

      I’m not saying I don’t agree with many of your thoughts (Randy Wells…take a look at Iowa’s stats first before asking for this one), but the big picture is development of the young players.

  • nayon
  • nayon