Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Brewers – 04/11/12

Game Six: Cubs (1-4) vs. Brewers (3-2)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 185/906
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Ryan Dempster (0-0, 1.17/0.65) vs. Yovani Gallardo (0-1, 14.73/3.27)

Dale Sveum will turn to Ryan Dempster to end the Cubs two game losing streak this afternoon. The Cubs need a good outing from Ryan Dempster against a team he’s had success against in the past. With Shawn Camp, Rafael Dolis, Lendy Castillo and Rodrigo Lopez pitching multiple innings over the last two games, Sveum’s relief options figure to be limited to James Russell, Kerry Wood and Carlos Marmol today.

Alfonso Soriano has quietly begun the season by hitting safely in each of the Cubs’ five games. And Bryan LaHair is expected back in the lineup this afternoon which could give the Cubs’ lineup some much-needed pop against Yovani Gallardo.

The first five games of the season have been decided by three runs or less and the Cubs have been outscored 26-18 … they have had the lead in three of their four losses.

Today it all starts with Ryan Dempster Ryan Dempster will try to pick-up where he left off on Opening Day against the Nationals. While Dempster admitted the wind helped keep the ball in the park last Thursday, Dempster still pitched a good game.

Dempster was charged with one run on two hits in 7 2/3 innings with three walks and 10 strikeouts … the all-important 3:1 strikeout to walk ratio.

Ryan Dempster had a lot of success against the Brewers before last season. In fact several of the Brewers’ players admitted after they beat Dempster the first time last year (July 26), they knew they had a good team. Dempster is 15-5 in 47 career games, 25 starts, against the Brewers with a 2.75 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP … last season, 0-2 in three starts with a 4.24 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP.

Brewers Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster

  • Ryan Braun – 11-for-46 with four doubles, two home runs and three walks
  • Yovani Gallardo – 0-for-3
  • Carlos Gomez – 2-for-5
  • Alex Gonzalez – 3-for-8 with a double and a walk
  • Corey Hart – 8-for-41 with three doubles, a triple, two home runs and five walks
  • Travis Ishikawa – 1-for-7 with two walks
  • Cesar Izturis – 4-for-18
  • George Kottaras – 0-for-3
  • Jonathan Lucroy – 2-for-9
  • Nyjer Morgan – 0-for-15 with two walks
  • Aramis Ramirez – 6-for-22 with two walks
  • Rickie Weeks – 9-for-37 with a double and six walks

Yovani Gallardo is coming off a horrible first start of the season. The Cardinals pounded Gallardo on Opening Day in Milwaukee and knocked one of the Brewers’ aces out in the fourth inning. Gallardo allowed six runs on seven hits with five walks and three strikeouts. The Cardinals hit four home runs (Carlos Beltran, David Freese, Matt Holliday and Yadier Molina) in 3 2/3 innings.

Gallardo is coming off a very good season (17-10 in 33 starts with a 3.52 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP) and has handled the Cubs rather well over his career.

Yovani Gallardo is 4-1 in 10 career starts against the Cubs with a 2.93 ERA and a 1.27 WHIP … at Wrigley Field, 1-1 in five starts with a 4.15 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Yovani Gallardo

  • Jeff Baker – 0-for-4
  • Darwin Barney – 1-for-8 with a walk
  • Marlon Byrd – 3-for-9 with three walks
  • Starlin Castro – 7-for-18 with three doubles and a walk
  • David DeJesus – 1-for-2 with a double and a walk
  • Blake DeWitt – 0-for-9 with a walk
  • Reed Johnson – 1-for-5 with a double
  • Alfonso Soriano – 3-for-17 with a double
  • Ian Stewart – 5-for-10 with two doubles, two home runs and a walk

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    DeJesus – RF
    Barney – 2B
    Castro – SS
    Soriano – LF
    Stewart – 3B
    LaHair – 1B
    Soto – C
    Byrd – CF
    Dempster – P

  • John G

    I just saw this on Yahoo. I know I’m late coming to the party, as it was actually posted as an April Fools list of items on Theo’s Cubs Way Manual. It may not be a joke, as the 2012 Cubs are pretty much fulfilling most of it so far.

    1. Each pitcher must effectively squander at least 10 leads over the course of the season

    2. No hitter may have a batting average with runners in scoring position over .250

    3. Albert Pujols must be allowed to hit at least one home run each series he plays against the Cubs. Addendum– Post-Trade to Los Angeles Angels: Please allow at least two home runs per series seeing that Mr. Pujols will not be playing the Cubs nearly as often.

    4. Prince Fielder must be allowed to hit at least one home run each series he plays against the Cubs. Addendum– Post-trade to Detroit Tigers: Please allow at least two home runs per series seeing that Mr. Fielder will not be playing the Cubs nearly as often.

    5. The team should never win by more than two runs. Anytime victory is apparent, players must do all in their power to make the game interesting.

    6. Under no circumstance should anyone within the organization do anything that would make Theo Epstein look less mafia-connected.

    7. No player or Cubs employee should do anything that would give the impression that Jed Hoyer is cooler than Theo Epstein.

    8. Should any animals make it into Wrigley Field (black cats, billy goats, or anything else), they are to be shot onsite. Immediately.

    9. If you feel the need to play exceptionally strong offensively, please balance it out defensively.

    10. See Number 9 – Switch “offensively” and “defensively”

    11. If no one on team is the obvious nutcase (RE: Carlos Zambrano), please select one accordingly. This can be a volunteer or mandatory position.

    12. The same lineup should never be used more than five days at a time. Injuries are a part of baseball: use them.

    13. If you don’t hustle like Marlon Byrd, that’s OK, you’ll fit in fine.

    14. Continue to test the fans’ counting ability. We know they can count to 103.

    15. Under no circumstance should the team win a World Series. While getting close and then properly executing number 5 on this list is welcome, we request you only take this risk if you are sure you can fulfill it.

  • xaxinho

    16. Do you love your teeth?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Trevor-Petersma/565104388 Trevor Petersma

    Anyone else watching the game today on here?  Feels like a small crowd.  

    • brent carmona

      Yeah, well Im listening to it while I work on an essay for english. Just a boring game I guess, everybody must be at work too.

      • Purkey24

        I’m typing a paper too. 20 pages worth. Glad ol’ Demp is making it tolerable.

        • brent carmona

          Keep grinding man. One more month of school for me, probably for you too. Almost there!

          Spoke too soon about demp, but he had a good day out there regardless.

          • Purkey24

            Thank you, much appreciated.

          • MikeT_2008

            Man you two are better than me, I blew off doing a term paper and then got a game like that, wish I had those hours back haha

    • RICK

      There was a game today? Where was it?

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Good baserunning by Barney

    • Agustinrexach

      still not over his implosion the other day…

      • Agustinrexach

        sorry was making reference to Wood strikes out the side comment…

  • brent carmona

    Last season I remember Dempster’s fastball was 90-92MPH, today, as viewed by mlb gameday pitch by pitch, it has been 87-89. I guess he is mixing his offspeed stuff well but this is not good.

    • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

      I don’t think Dempster has to throw hard to be effective.  He’s a crafty, smart player that will be able to get guys out as natural stuff gets less impressive. 

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Dempster did his job, rough start but strong through the middle innings.

  • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

    Someone tell Byrd to take a pitch…

    And that he sucks

    • RICK

      How bout just get rid of him.

  • paulcatanese

    One thing I have noticed in the first four and a half games, the defensive shifts by the other teams are taking more than average balls
    that are hit by the Cubs. 
    Don’t mean to beat a dead horse, but Stewart today is the first one I have seen trying to lay down a bunt to beat the shift.
    Unless the Cubs start doing this it will kill them all year. Dosen’t take a brain surgeon to figure it out.
    Castro really should have two errors today, got to catch the throw from Soto.
    Byrd, 4 pitches two outs. Third time up, two on, looks at strike three,
    give him a rest.

  • Bryan

    Just turned on the game in the bottom of the 7th.  What a pathetic showing by Soto, Byrd and Dewitt.  Question, does Byrd ever move his legs anymore when swinging?  Truly he’s just “all arms”, and is so late on every fastball. Just sad to watch.

    First and second and no-outs, and typical abysmal showing at the bottom of the lineup.  How many times have we seen this over the last few years? 

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Wood strikes out the side in the eighth

  • Bryan

    Not looking to over-agitate on the 7th inning, but when you’re down by one run, and have runners on 1st and 2nd and no-outs, doesn’t the manager “playbook” say “bunt!” to advance the runners???

    It seems to me that the team spent exhaustive time in ST doing a formal bunting competition.  How about using those developed skills, or can Soto still not bunt?  Geez!

    • cubtex

      Sveum’s managing late in games so far is baffling. I don’t get it either.

    • paulcatanese

      I would say the latter is correct, Soto cannot bunt.

  • Dorasaga

    A patient ab-bat by Ol’ Fonzi? WOW!

    • Dorasaga

       So impressed (n surprised) that I mistyped…

      • Dorasaga

         Can’t believe Stewart got away (a borderline strike called ball on a 1-2 pitch), but the result of LOB with RISP remains. :-(

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Marmol with a better inning, first two strikeouts of the season

  • John G

    So why can’t Wood and Marmol do that when they have the lead? I suspect it’s a variation on rule #5.

  • Dorasaga

    “Big Clutch” Clevenger did it again. That was a tough 96 mile on the outside corner for a double!!

    Reedy, *clap* *clap*!!

  • Michael

    Marlon Byrd is no longer a 25 man roster player. He looks hopeless and sporting a sub .100 avg while never moving his lower body when he swings, nevermind he was pinch hit at the end of the game for Clevs. My money is he will be released or traded for a dozen bats…

    • Redlarczykg

      Holding on to Byrd is a stroke of genius by Theo/Jed.  His value is sky rocketting with is .048 BA!

      • BosephHeyden

         I think we all overestimate how much these players are worth.  Jim Hendry was a pretty worthless judge of talent after 2008 and it shows now (not that he was a great judge of talent before that, but you could make that case since they won the Central both in 2007 and 2008…but then destroyed that team for nothing, so at best it’s a wash).  Byrd was signed because Hendry thought Milton Bradley was better than any of the other outfielders available that year (he wasn’t).  Byrd was the best available outfielder in 2010, but not as good as the other options Hendry passed up in 2009.

        Other teams knew this.  It’s not like Byrd was awful the first two years, but he was an above average outfielder that was on the decline.  It’s why when he got the offer Hendry gave him, he jumped, despite it being the team that possessed a fan base that was rightfully harsh towards a friend of his.  He got a contract that he knew he was never going to see again, he took it, and this just happens to be the year where his play noticeably drops.

        Other teams knew this was coming, and it’s why no one is jumping on Marlon Byrd, especially when there are a few teams that could use an outfielder.  We’re stuck with Byrd, just like we’re stuck with Marmol, just like we’re stuck with Kerry Wood, just like we’re likely stuck with Maholm and Volstad (though those last three are all on Theo/Hoyer).

        Another fun fact:  it isn’t like the Padres were doing that great or making strides to be a good young team.  Yeah, they had a good 2010 team, but they blew that team up and wound up with that 2011 team.  So take that for what it’s worth.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 2-1 to Brewers Wednesday afternoon

    Ryan Dempster: 2R, 5H, 3BB, 5K in 6.2IP; Starlin Castro: 0-for-2, RBI, BB, SB; Cubs: 6 hits, 0-for-7 RISP, 8 LOB

  • Bryan

    Six games into the season and we’re already 3.5 games back.  At this rate we might be mathematically eliminated by Memorial Day.  Looks like we’ll be put out of our misery early this season.  Just bad offensive baseball.  And too bad for Dempster (again).

    • cubs1967

      it’s called:

      “going for the draft pick baby………”

      baseball is better was just a mirage the marketing dept came up with……….

      theo/jed tanked the year………….which means:

      honeymoon over…………NO more standing ovations at cubs convention for doing NOTHING!

      104 yrs and counting………………

  • Nathan

    If Byrd is gonna stay on the roster and Jackson isn’t getting called up until June they need to just play Johnson or Mather everyday and at least give the Cubs a chance to get a hit when they are up. Clevenger needs more playing time cuz he can just flat out hit, always has

    • cubs1967

      nothing happens in June……….the trade deadline is July…….does everyone think the other teams will feel sorry for the Cubs in June and make a trade……..beyond frustrating……if Byrd could not be moved over the winter; then we won’t get moved period. release him and stop this crap with BJax in Iowa……….

      AND STOP THINKING ABOUT JUNE…………NOTHING HAPPENS IN JUNE WITH GUYS HITTING BELOW .100!!

      • Nathan

        Cubs1967,

        I think you misundersood my whole comment. I never said anything about june regarding Byrd. My point was, if bryd is gonna stay on the roster and brett jackson is not gonna get called up until at least june in order to save arbitration years I think Sveum should consider just sitting him on the bench and playing other guys. Im completely aware of when the trade deadline is

  • paulcatanese

    Johnson was so far behind two fastballs,can’t belive it.

  • MikeT_2008

    Man I knew this year would be rough, but man this offense looks like it could be historically bad, but at least the pitching (starting) is doing an ok job for the most part.

  • cubtex

    This team can’t score runs in bunches and they don’t bunt to try and manufacture a run late in games. Pathetic. Milwaukee pitchers struck out the side in the 8th and 9th innings against Cub batters. I know Sveum is a teacher and has had a good impact on the kids………but did you forget the sign for a sacrifice bunt????

    • Shawng1981

      Actually Soto did show bunt twice in his AB in the 7th inning, but took one for a strike and a ball on the 2nd.. Soto and Byrd need to be on the bench for awhile.. Clevenger is out hitting Soto and caught the only day we won.. :)

      • cubtex

        He wouldn’t have caught the only game we won if he caught Maholm instead of Shark :)

  • matthew8510

    what do you expect with a dejesus barney stewart and byd in starting lineup with a bench of dewitt and johnson

    • cubtex

      You play for the tie at home and the win on the road. He still had Clevenger on the bench to use in the 7th as well!

      • paulcatanese

        Watching the game and in that inning I imediately thought of you turning over in you’re seat.
        I could hear it now, bunt,bunt,bunt.
        The idiots.
        Should have kept Campana, thats all he can do, bunt:)

        • cubtex

          Ha. He is putting on a clinic on what NOT to do. It is almost like he is trying to lose. Stealing 3rd with your #4 and #5 hitters coming up with one out in a close game. Hitting and running with no outs in a 1 run game with your leadoff hitter on 1st and no outs. Not bunting today down 1 run with your #7 hitter up with 1st and 2nd and no outs. He acted like we had Ryan Braun and Prince Fielder coming up. I don’t understand what he is thinking.

          • paulcatanese

            When you look at Sveum and where he has been before the Cubs, with a team that can do almost all of it I have to think it’s ingrained in him to see it able to happen here with the Cubs.
            As soon as he realizes that it’s not the Brewers maybe he will come around and do some of the things that he worked on in ST and start benching players.

          • cubtex

            I hope so because he has been pushing all the wrong buttons so far.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Trevor-Petersma/565104388 Trevor Petersma

    Looking at the bright side of things, our starting pitching has not been bad.  2 great starts by Demps, Garza and Shark looked good.  The bats have to find a way to get going.  Byrd is really struggling right now.  

    • Zonk

      Our starting pitching is slightly above league average.  Our defense is OK, particularly with Soriano improving, and Stewart being a huge upgrade over A-Ram.

      But our bullpen stinks, and our offense will struggle to score all year. 

      This is exactly how most scouting reports had the Cubs in pre-season:  Decent SP, better D, pretty lousy everything else.  Result: about 70 wins

      • matthew8510

        i hope you mean a defensive upgrade cause i do not agree with offensive upgrade

  • RICK

    Looks like the same old CUBS. 2 ON NO OUTS. 2 STRIKEOUTS AND A GROUND OUT BOTTOM OF 7.

  • cubtex

    Ok….here’s my take on what is wrong with Marlon Byrd… He has gotten so weak from the weight loss he can’t even use his lower half when he swings. Somebody get that man a deep dish pizza. :)

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      You know he is allergic to wheat, right?

      • cubtex

        Gluten free pizza then :)

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          I was diagnosed with the allergy almost 15 years ago to the day. A lot of improvements have been made, but not the same. It is a big lifestyle change and it could be having an impact on him.

          • cubtex

            I didn’t mean to be insensitive. Sorry… My sister is the same way. Hers is so bad that if she has a beer in pizza she gets this pain in her joints…mainly her ankles and knees and has trouble walking without limping.

          • cubtex

            and pizza:) typing while out walking dog :)

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            You weren’t and I did not take it that way.

            Those that do not know what a gluten allergy is has no idea. I have not knowingly had anything made with wheat (bread, pasta, etc.) since I found out. It is an extremely challenging allergy that impacts more than just a person’s diet.