Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. White Sox – 05/18/12

Game Thirty-Nine: Cubs (15-23) vs. White Sox (18-21)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV (Cubs) – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 183/914
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Jeff Samardzija (4-1, 2.89/1.17) vs. Philip Humber (1-2, 5.77/1.40)

Even with all of the changes on both sides of Chicago, the next three days should be anything but boring in the first round of the City Series. The Cubs are just 4-8 over the last two years against the Southsiders (2-4 in both 2010 and 2011) but have only been outscored by a total of 10 runs over the last 12 games against the Sox. The Cubs are 39-45 (22-20 at Wrigley Field) against the White Sox.

Dale Sveum will send Jeff Samardzija, Ryan Dempster and Paul Maholm to the hill and Robin Ventura will counter with Philip Humber, John Danks and Jake Peavy. Adam Dunn is expected to play left field for the Sox throughout the weekend so he can hit at one of his favorite parks.

Jeff Samardzija fired the first shot off the weekend prior to Thursday’s game against the Phillies. Samardzija now has the tough task of putting his money where his mouth is.

Geovany Soto was scratched from Thursday’s game because of inflammation in his left knee. Soto had an MRI scheduled for Friday morning and is not expected to be in the starting lineup. Soto will be available but look for Welington Castillo to be behind the plate. Steve Clevenger was expected to start a minor league rehab assignment on Monday and could be activated from the DL a week from today (May 25).

Updated 10:23am CDTGeovany Soto has a small tear in his meniscus and will be placed on the DL following Friday’s game. Darwin Barney is the Cubs’ emergency catcher for Friday. Soto will have his knee scoped and is expected to miss three to four weeks. Blake Lalli is expected to be added to the 40-man roster and called up to serve as Welington Castillo’s backup until Steve Clevenger returns.

The Cubs begin their Interleague schedule this afternoon after going 5-10 versus the Junior Circuit a year ago. Along with the six games against the Sox, the Cubs have three against the Twins (June 8 – June 10), three against Prince Fielder and the Tigers (June 12 – June 14) and three at Wrigley against the Red Sox (June 15 – June 17). Sveum’s Cubs play only six games in AL parks (Minnesota, White Sox)

The Cubs are in need of a win. After dropping three in a row, Sveum’s Cubs enter play this afternoon a season-high eight games under .500.

Today it all starts with Jeff Samardzija in what could be Kerry Wood’s last game. Jeff Samardzija is coming off another solid outing. It was short outing due to an elevated pitch count and a gamble by Dale Sveum that momentarily paid off. Samardzija was lifted for Reed Johnson to start the top of the sixth. Johnson hit a solo shot and broke up the 1-1 tie but the Cubs’ pen could not hold the lead. Samardzija gave up a run on three hits with two walks and six strikeouts in five innings.

Like Matt Garza, Jeff Samardzija has been very good at Wrigley this season. In three home starts, Samardzija has allowed four runs, two earned, on 13 hits with 24 strikeouts and four walks in 22 1/3 innings. Samardzija is 2-0 with a 0.81 ERA and a 0.76 WHIP.

After starting the season 2-1 in four starts with a 4.13 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP, Samardzija is 2-0 in his last three starts with a 1.37 ERA and a 0.86 WHIP.

Jeff Samardzija will make the first start of his career against the White Sox this afternoon. Samardzija is 0-1 in three career appearances against the Sox with a 2.45 ERA and a 0.55 WHIP.

White Sox Career Numbers against Jeff Samardzija

  • Adam Dunn – 1-for-2 with a home run
  • Paul Konerko – 0-for-2
  • Brent Morel – 0-for-1
  • A.J. Pierzynski – 1-for-1
  • Alexei Ramirez – 1-for-2 with a double
  • Alex Rios – 0-for-2

After three miserable starts following his perfect game on April 21 in Seattle, Phil Humber is coming off a solid outing against the Royals. Humber received a no decision after allowing one run on four hits with three walks and seven strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings. The Sox ended up losing pretty badly to the Royals (9-1) but only the single tally was on Humber’s record.

Phil Humber is 1-1 in two starts outside of the Cell this season with a 6.35 ERA and a 0.97 WHIP.

Today will be the second time that Phil Humber has started a game against the Cubs. Humber tossed a seven-inning gem last July at Wrigley. The Sox won the game 1-0 and Humber allowed only five hits and three walks while striking out four … Matt Garza took the loss after allowing the one run on four hits with two walks and seven strikeouts in nine innings.

Cubs Career Numbers against Philip Humber

  • Darwin Barney – 2-for-2 with a walk
  • Starlin Castro – 1-for-3
  • David DeJesus – 2-for-5 with a triple
  • Alfonso Soriano – 0-for-3
  • Geovany Soto – 0-for-2 with a walk

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    DeJesus – RF
    Campana – CF
    Castro – SS
    LaHair – 1B
    Soriano – LF
    Stewart – 3B
    Castillo – C
    Barney – 2B
    Samardzija – P

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From the update – Geovany Soto has a small tear in his meniscus and will be placed on the DL following Friday’s game. Darwin Barney is the Cubs’ emergency catcher for Friday. Soto will have his knee scoped and is expected to miss three to four weeks. Blake Lalli is expected to be added to the 40-man roster and called up to serve as Welington Castillo’s backup until Steve Clevenger returns. 

    • BosephHeyden

       So I guess the question would be who goes down when Clevenger comes back?  Clevenger has done better than Castillo, both at the plate and behind it.  Yet, if Castillo winds up not being the choice for starting catcher in the long run, it’s smarter to up his value in Triple A rather than give him one start every five or six games (if that).  Lalli, on the other hand, is clearly designed to be a backup catcher, especially with his age.  Having him sit on the bench and occasionally get a start wouldn’t hurt the organization even a little.

      • Ripsnorter1

        I would think that the Cubs will just wait and see if/when Soto comes back. He could be dealt by then. And lots can happen, too. Maybe Castillo gets hurt as well. We hope not, but the Nats lost two catchers in two days. 

  • CubsTalk

    Soto is gone for a few weeks……well, there goes a trade chip……was not helping this team anyway…..maybe Bob Brenly will see his son play this year at Wrigley…..it will be a beautiful weekend ……I expect Dunn to have a  good weekend……. lots of home runs on both sides……Jeff needs to go 7 innings today….Soriano needs to show power this weekend……Go Cubs

    • carmelo

      Bring up T. Wood for rotation, put Volsad in K. Wood spot in bullpen.

    • BosephHeyden

       I think Michael Brenly may make an excellent choice for backup catcher in the future.  I mean, keeping Wellington Castillo AND Steve Clevenger isn’t really a smart idea:  you’ve got to get behind whichever one of the two is better (at this point, it’s Clevenger), let the other one kill the ball in Triple A, then trade them for what they are:  a very good prospect catcher.

      Brenly has had next-to-no hype, and you get the feeling he was drafted and signed because of his dad.  But he’s performed well enough to make it to Double A, yet isn’t an amazing player that you expect to start, which is exactly what you’d expect from a backup.

      It’s not a move you do this year, mind you (unless you have room on the 40 Man Roster in September), but it’s a move you can look into once you establish who your starter is going to be in this rebuilding phase.

  • John_CC

    I like Samardzija’s comment…just in good fun.

  • BosephHeyden

    Samardzija wasn’t wrong with his criticisms.  I’m glad someone just threw it out there that Hawk Harrelson really isn’t that great an announcer.  It’s fun to listen to him in spurts, so long as the White Sox aren’t playing your team, but five minutes of him in a year can go a long way.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Chris Volstad has been optioned to Triple-A Iowa

    • BosephHeyden

       I suppose this works, too.  I guess you send Volstad down to bring up Lalli, then put Soto on the DL to have justification to bring up Scott Maine yet again, then once Wood retires, bring up Travis Wood.

      Or they could do something completely different that boggles my mind even more.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Blake Lalli officially added to roster. Takes Volstad’s spot on active roster. Travis Wood will take Soto’s spot.

  • John_CC

    Dunn should be an adventure to watch in the OF today!

    • Tony_Hall

      He was just hoping it would hit the wall, so that he didn’t have to make a play…

    • John_CC

       Ha! 

      Leadoff double to the warning track in LF!

  • Tony_Hall

    Some good roster management going on right now.  Maximizing the spots with all that is going on.

    • cubtex

      What do you mean?

      • Tony_Hall

        They were going to send down Volstad for T Wood
        DL Soto for Lalli
        Woody for another reliever most likely Maine.

        But instead of doing the straight position for position moves.

        Volstad for Lalli (SP for a back-up catcher)Soto still able to PH today
        Soto for Maine (most likely) tomorrow
        Wood for Wood by Tuesday

  • Tony_Hall

    When Adam Dunn swings and the ball goes up, it just looks like he crushed it, every time.   Lucky for us, it was a weak fly ball to right.

    • Tony_Hall

      And Konerko actually did crush it.

  • Tony_Hall

    Can’t teach speed…

    It makes a defense rush every play.

  • Tony_Hall

    Missed it, what happened.

    • John_CC

       Shark lost a split finger fastball and hit Paulie in the eye. Pretty scary, he walked off though.

  • Tony_Hall

    Young SS, with a throwing error on a routing play….interesting.

    • John_CC

      I wouldn’t call Alexie a young SS. And a 1Bman probably would have stayed on the bag and actually tried to stretch out a bit. I can’t believe how bad Dunn is now, he was always bad, but now he is awful. I don’t think his potential bat makes up for all the baserunners he will allow. But go ahead Ventura.

      • Tony_Hall

        Sorry, an old grizzly vet SS, with a throwing error on a routine play…can’t even say he will grow out of it…I guess it just happens sometimes.

      • Tony_Hall

        Wow, didn’t realize he was 30…on paper.

        • Dorasaga

          See my comment below John’s. He’s veteran 2B, but only 4th year in SS. I don’t second-guess age reported by Cuban players, unless proved otherwise (usu. a result of a trick by their Dominican agent).

          • Tony_Hall

            D – I know you don’t and respect that…it was a cheap joke….but still just a joke.

          • Dorasaga

            Sure. Just for the record: I don’t defend Cuban players or the Cuban League with any affection. I’m stating the fact that their League data were updated regularly online (and on their record book according to American researchers). If someone with good Spanish cared to check online, even the age of those players who crossed the Gulf has been accurate year-in and year-out.

      • Dorasaga

         Alexi played 2B back in Cuba. The White Sox made an experiment to place him SS, and it worked…

  • John_CC

    Dunnkey is AWFULL!

  • Tony_Hall

    Between bunts for hits, and FC instead of double plays, etc, Campana, should be able to keep his average pretty high.

  • John_CC

    Len is such a little weeny about brush backs and retaliation.  I like that Brenly is there to teach the lad. 

    • Tony_Hall

      Seems pretty simple, let the players police themselves and take care of business and move on.  No warnings need to be issued.  

      Of course Humber needs to keep the ball below the shoulders, but then again, he tried to drill him and missed.

      • BosephHeyden

        Brenly said it best:  you hit the equivalent hitter and move on.  But you do it right.  Humber threw not just behind LaHair, but up.  Had it been on target, it had the potential to injure him, not send a message.  I can appreciate “retaliation” for hit batters, intentional or not, but when a pitcher accidentally hits your guy in the face, you don’t go out an intentionally try to do the same.

      • Brp921

        When you want to bean a guy you throw behind him, so yeah, Humber was trying to bean him. Samarzija was throwing inside and one just got away. A pitch inside between shoulders and the knees was what was warranted. A warning to both teams was not called for. The umpire should have ignored that pitch since he missed him and thrown him out if he did it again.

        • Tony_Hall

          I agree, even if Humber had hit Lahair, I don’t think a warning was necessary, as long as it was below the shoulders and above the knees.

          • Ripsnorter1

            After Bryce Harper was nailed in the back by Cole Hammels, the Nats waited two innings until Cole Hammels came to bat. Then the Nats pitcher nailed him in the right knee cap.

            They wanted to hurt Hammels. It was a fastball. First pitch fastball.

  • John_CC

    Castillo needs some coaching on his hitting approach. I’m sure Sveum and Rudy will be getting some extra time in with him. Looks lost. 

    • BosephHeyden

      He has no discipline.  He has swung at everything Humber has thrown, which so far is a grand total of one actual strike.  He and Cardenas both have this awful habit of swinging at the very first pitch, and it isn’t working out for either.

    • Zonk

      Not sure why anyone is surprised though; if you look at his minor league record, it’s alot of empty swings, and that’s against minor league pitching.

      This is why I am dubious of Castillo being starting material.  He can throw runners out and has power, which is maybe enough for a backup C, but not a ML starter

  • Brp921

    That was a terrible call!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Sveum ejected

    • Tony_Hall

      Can’t say I have ever seen a runner tackled before…

    • John_CC

       I like Sveum’s involvement in the games, and his fire too. Terrible call and Dale was rightly pissed.

    • Josh Man

      The ump should’ve been ejected. Terrible call

  • Brp921

    It looked like the home plate umpire called the ball hit by LaHair foul.

  • John_CC

    Great catch, Barney.  These shifts are working quite well.

  • John_CC

    SHARK!

    Kicked the second-guess door closed!

  • Tony_Hall

    66 pitches…that’s hard to understand.   But we will take it.

    Nice RBI Single by Samardzija.

  • Brp921

    I was hoping for the squeeze with DeJesus.

  • Josh Man

    The Shark ensures he won’t take a loss.

    • Tony_Hall

      So much for that.

      • Josh Man

        Yeah. Spoke a little too soon.

  • John_CC

     AWFUL!  DeJesus and Campy…AWFUL!  Two pitches, two outs.

  • RynoTiger

    can someone please teach Campana how to freakin’ bunt?!

    • paulcatanese

      Wasn’t that a bunt single Campana got in the first inning?
      And then stole second?

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Samardzija delivers the game tying single

  • John_CC

    Cubs need to take the lead in the bottom of the 8th and hand the ball the Wood! 

    • John_CC

       Or now and he could get one last W…

  • Tony_Hall

    C’mon Woody…one last time!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Here comes Kerry Wood …

  • Dorasaga

    Will this be “it” for Kerry?

    • Dorasaga

       Standing ovation. Must be it.

  • Tony_Hall

    And you know, you get the feeling that Kerry Wood isn’t pitching against left handers, he isn’t pitching against pinch hitters, he isn’t pitching against the White Sox. He’s pitching against time. He’s pitching against the future, against age, and even when you think about his career, against ending. And today I think he might be able to use that aching old arm one more time to push the sun back up in the sky and give us one more day of summer. 

    • Brian

       Absolutely fantastic post, Tony!  So well played.  I will go watch that scene and imagine Vin Scully is talking about Woody!

    • John G

      Well said, Tony.

  • John_CC

    Hard to imagine the emotion on the mound right now.

    K

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Kerry goes out with a swinging strikeout

  • Tony_Hall

    Class act all the way.   Now let’s win it for Kerry.

  • John_CC

    wow. don’t know about you guys…but that brought a tear to my eye when his kid came out.  Strange how few players are there that ever really played with Woody.

  • John G

    Tears in my eyes.

    • John_CC

       It’s the end of another era.  ’84 was very fun for me, but I was still just a little leaguer without the depth of Cubs experience I brushed that loss off. ’89 was more painful, but still nothing like ’98 – ’08.  This is era that I matured into a Cubs fan, this is “my” era.  And Woody was the last one. 

  • Josh Man

    For a short time, we got to witness greatness. And it was in a Cubs uniform. Thank you, Kerry.

    • Zonk

      That was the way to go out.  Let it be known that he was throwing 95mph heat on his last day in the majors.

  • Agustinrexach

    Emotional baseball moment to say the least, a great guy indeed. KERRY WOOD!!!

  • Tony_Hall

    Welcome to the show, another Blake…Lalli this time.

  • Tony_Hall

    I think the Baseball Gods have spoken…

    • Tony_Hall

      On second thought, I think the sun just got in his eyes :)

      • Dorasaga

         Hahaha.

  • John_CC

    Make them pay!

  • Tony_Hall

    Maybe Reed can knock one out and retire as well.

    • Dorasaga

      dang!

      • Dorasaga

        All the emotion built up n another good hustle by Barney (got to let him play upper the lineup; again, more on that… another time), but well, such is the state of the Cubs. Wait for the next one…

    • brent carmona

      Haha good one tony, had me a laugh there

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 3-2 to White Sox on Friday afternoon

    Jeff Samardzija: 3R, 6H(2HR), 2BB, HBP ,8K,7.1 IP, 1-for-3,RBI; Starlin Castro: 1-for-3, RBI, SF

  • John G

    Just watched the replay of Kerry’s exit. Very classy on the part of the White Sox. Several of them applauding KW, including AJ Pierzinski. Nice to see.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Kerry Wood finishes his career as the only pitcher in MLB history with 75 wins, 50 saves, and 10 strikeouts per 9 IP 

    • Tedtop16

      Well done. Kerry Woods. Thank you for your body of work as a CUB.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Wood’s presser:

    Wood: “I had a blast. I wouldn’t trade anything in.”

    “I’ll be around.” Said will be part of the Cubs organization.

    Wood: “it was just time… The grind of getting ready everyday.”

    Wood: I didn’t want the last inning to be me throwing my glove into the seats

    Best moments? Game 7 homer and rookie year, “facing Maddux in playoffs was pretty cool.”

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Bruce Miles: Iowa spies say Randy Wells headed to Chicago.

    • CubsTalk

       Oh My God….

  • matthew8510

    beat me to it

  • notcubbiewubbie

    once again umpires showing they don’t have a clue. bacon shoves de jesus off the bag even if its part of the play. no way de jesus overslid the bag. remember this i will always say this when you are watching baseball close plays at home and second base; the best you get is 50/50 cnance that the three blind mice get it right. nough said.

  • cc002600

    so long kerry. He was one of my all-time cub favorites.

  • CubsTalk

    Cubs have 24 loses…..12 of those loses come from pitchers who are retired, in Iowa or on the DL now.