Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Reds – 05/03/12

Game Twenty-Five: Cubs (9-15) vs. Reds (11-12)
Game Time – 11:35am CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 184/901
Location – Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati

Ryan Dempster (0-1, 1.33/0.93) vs. Homer Bailey (1-2, 3.60/1.36)

Updated – 9:02am CDT Ryan Dempster and Kerry Wood Activated from 15-day DL – Randy Wells and Scott Maine Optioned to Triple-A Iowa

The Cubs and Reds conclude their two-game series with an early start time on Ryan Dempster’s 35th birthday. Dempster will be activated from the DL to make his first start since April 17. Ryan Dempster was off to a good start before a strained right quad landed him on the disabled list.

With Tuesday’s rainout and Wednesday’s win behind Jeff Samardzija, the Cubs are guaranteed at least a .500 trip through Philadelphia and Cincinnati … but a victory this afternoon would be a good way to top off a solid road trip. The Cubs have played better ball of late and are 6-4 in their last ten games.

Paul Maholm was scheduled to pitch today’s finale against but he has been pushed to Friday’s opener at Wrigley against the Dodgers.

Along with Ryan Dempster, the Cubs are expected to activate Kerry Wood from the DL prior to today’s game. Wood has been on the disabled list April 14 with right shoulder fatigue. The Cubs will have to create two spot on the 25-man roster for Dempster and Wood. Randy Wells and Scott Maine could be on their way back to Iowa to make room for the two vets.

In other news, Dave McKay confirmed he will be part of Tony LaRussa’s coaching staff for the NL All-Star team … but there was one condition. McKay said he would not wear red that he will wear his Cubs’ uniform.

In a battle of the birthday boys, today all starts with Ryan Dempster

Ryan Dempster has spent the last two weeks disabled with a right quad strain. The last time he was on the hill he received a no decision in Miami (April 17). Dempster allowed two earned runs on four hits in six innings with two walks and eight strikeouts.

Despite not winning a game and his team being 0-3 in his three starts, Ryan Dempster was off to a good start before spending time on the shelf. In 20 1/3 innings, Dempster has allowed five runs, three earned, on 11 hits with eight walks and 23 strikeouts.

Ryan Dempster will make the 19th career start of his career this afternoon against the Reds. Dempster is 7-8 in 42 career appearances, 18 starts, with a 3.88 ERA and a 1.51 WHIP … last year, 2-2 in five starts with a 2.81 ERA and a 1.34 WHIP. Dempster is 1-8 in 27 career games, 14 starts, at Great American with a 5.53 ERA and a 1.72 WHIP.

Reds Career Numbers against Ryan Dempster

  • Homer Bailey – 0-for-1
  • Jay Bruce – 5-for-21 with a double and six walks
  • Miguel Cairo – 1-for-14
  • Todd Frazier – 0-for-1 with two walks
  • Ryan Hanigan – 1-for-6
  • Willie Harris – 3-for-7 with a walk
  • Barry Larkin – 7-for-20 with two walks
  • Ryan Ludwick – 12-for-30 with three doubles and a home run
  • Devin Mesoraco – 0-for-2 with a walk
  • Brandon Phillips – 7-for-35 with two home runs and four walks
  • Scott Rolen – 6-for-34 with two doubles, a home run and four walks
  • Drew Stubbs – 4-for-21 with a double and a home run
  • Wilson Valdez – 1-for-3
  • Joey Votto – 6-for-27 with a double, a triple, two home runs and six walks

Homer Bailey’s only victory this season came against the Cubs on April 20. Bailey was the benefactor of a rough outing from Chris Volstad. Bailey pitched seven innings in a 9-4 Reds win and he allowed four runs, one earned, on five hits without a walk and two strikeouts. Bailey was not that sharp, just opportunistic.

Bailey is coming off a no-decision against the Giants. Bailey allowed three runs, two earned, on seven hits with two walks and six strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings. Bailey left with the lead but Sean Marshall coughed it up in the ninth … with a little help from Angel Pagan.

Today marks the eighth time Homer Bailey has faced the Cubs in his career. Bailey is 3-2 in seven starts with a 5.77 ERA and a 1.67 WHIP. If the Cubs are patient, Bailey will put runners on base but if they use the same game plan they did on April 20, the once top pitching prospect in the Reds’ system will post his second win of the season.

Cubs Career Numbers against Homer Bailey

  • Jeff Baker – 0-for-3
  • Darwin Barney – 2-for-8 with a walk
  • Starlin Castro – 3-for-10 with a home run and a walk
  • David DeJesus – 1-for-4
  • Blake DeWitt – 3-for-4 with a double
  • Reed Johnson – 0-for-1
  • Bryan LaHair – 3-for-5 with a double and a walk
  • Joe Mather – 0-for-1
  • Alfonso Soriano – 3-for-13 with a double, a home run and a walk
  • Geovany Soto – 1-for-6
  • Ian Stewart – 2-for-12

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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