Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Padres – 05/29/12

Game Forty-Nine: Cubs (16-32) vs. Padres (17-33)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 183/914
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Jeff Samardzija (4-3, 3.00/1.18) vs. Eric Stults (1-0, 1.54/1.20)

Updated 10:05am CDTSteve Clevenger Activated from 15-day DL - Blake Lalli Optioned to Triple-A Iowa

Can Dale Sveum’s Cubs make it two wins in a row this afternoon? After just a miserable stretch of games, the Cubs outhit the Padres on Monday afternoon and scored nearly as many runs (11) in one day than they did in the previous six games (12).

Two of the players the Cubs needed to step up did. Starlin Castro hit his fourth homer of the season and second in as many games. Bryan LaHair tallied three hits in four at bats, drove in a run and collected his first extra basehit since May 15. LaHair should be in today’s starting lineup, along with Ian Stewart, as lefties (.231/.286/.214) have hit a little better than right-handers (.216/.322/.258) against Eric Stults … granted, in a small sample size. The Cubs are 1-9 in games started by left-handers this season.

Alfonso Soriano has put his rough start to the season behind him. After managing just a .237/.250/.263 homerless April with only two doubles, Soriano is hitting .302/.355/.593/.948 in his last 23 games with seven doubles and six home runs … and he has walked six times.

If the game is close in the ninth, James Russell or Shawn Camp could be called on to close it out for the Cubs. Dale Sveum used Camp in the seventh inning Monday with the game on the line. Carlos Marmol was activated from the DL prior to Monday’s game but will not be used as the team’s closer for now.

On his bobblehead day, it all starts with Jeff Samardzija

Despite picking up his third loss of the season, Jeff Samardzija is coming off another solid effort and quality start. Samardzija allowed just two runs on six hits with two walks and four strikeouts in six innings to the Astros. The difference while Samardzija was on the mound, a bloop triple off the bat of J.D. Martinez that plated two runs.

Samardzija threw the ball well and could have gone out for another inning but Jamie Quirk lifted him for a pinch hitter in the seventh inning.

Jeff Samardzija has “lost” his last two starts but both outings had more to do with the lack of support than his performance. Samardzija is 2-2 in his last five starts with a 2.18 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP.

Like Matt Garza, Samardzija likes pitching at Wrigley and is 2-1 in four home starts with a 1.52 ERA and a 0.84 WHIP.

Today marks the first time Jeff Samardzija has started a game against the Padres. In his other two appearances, Samardzija is 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA and a 3.00 WHIP (no runs on three hits with four walks and four strikeouts in 2 1/3 innings).

Padres Career Numbers against Jeff Samardzija

  • Yonder Alonso – 0-for-1
  • Chase Headley – 0-for-2
  • Nick Hundley – 0-for-2
  • Cameron Maybin – 1-for-4 with a walk
  • Carlos Quentin – 0-for-2
  • Will Venable – A walk in only plate appearance

Eric Stults began the season with the team on the South Side of Chicago. Stults was 1-0 in two outings, one start, with a 2.70 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP for the White Sox before being designated for assignment on May 15. The Padres claimed the lefty off waivers two days later (May 17) and today will be Stults’ second start for San Diego.

Eric Stults held the Mets to one run on four hits in five innings in his Padres’ debut. Stults walked one and struck out two and left the game after being hit in the arm with a line drive. Stults posted the win but his start this afternoon was in question until Sunday. Stults threw a 20-pitch bullpen session, said he felt fine and was cleared to pitch this afternoon.

Eric Stults last faced the Cubs in 2009 while in a Dodgers uniform and is 0-2 in two career starts against the Cubs with a 8.59 ERA and a 2.45 WHIP … both of his outings against the Cubs were at Wrigley Field.

Jeff Baker (1-for-3 with a walk), Reed Johnson (2-for-2), Alfonso Soriano (1-for-5) and Ian Stewart (2-for-5 with a double and a walk) are the only Cubs on the active roster that has faced Eric Stults.

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball ….

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO

Quote of the Day

"Always make a total effort, even when the odds are against you." - Arnold Palmer
Share on Fancred
  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Steve Clevenger was activated from 15-day DL and Blake Lalli was optioned to Triple-A Iowa

    • CubsTalk

      When Blake is about 60, he can tell his grandkids how he spent time with the Cubs as a catcher….before he was selling cars in Gibsonia, PA.

    • Zonk

      Barring injury, that’s probably it for Blake Lalli’s major league career.  As an undrafted FA, probably more than most kids can hope for.  Good for him.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    DeJesus – RF
    Castro – SS
    Mather – 3B
    Soriano – LF
    Baker – 1B
    Johnson – CF
    Barney – 2B
    Hill – C
    Samardzija – P

    • Aaron

      Is there a “dislike” button for this lineup?

      Hill, Johnson, and Baker make 3 automatic outs in that lineup…Baker is hitting .217/.321/.304 with just 2 RBI this year against lefties, and Hill is…well, same old crappy player…both on his extremely overrated “defense” and of course, his lack of hitting ability. And Johnson…while you’d normally put him in the same category as Baker as “crushing lefties”, is only batting .179/.233/.393 against lefties this year

      Given those stat lines, I would guess the Cubs will lose today…but hey, what do I know…I’m only going off stats…to further illustrate how bad this team is against lefties, here you go:

      DeJesus: .200/.351/.200
      Soriano: .226/.265/.484
      Barney: .171/.216/.171

      Castro at .381/.409/.476 and Mather .280/.419/.360 are the only ones hitting at a respectable level against lefties…and the fact that they are hitting back-to-back in a lineup that is dreadful against lefties doesn’t really bode well for them.

      Baker, Johnson, Barney, and Hill give you 4 in a row that are near automatic outs against lefties this year. 

      Samardzija, Castro, and Mather are your saviors today. If they can hit, then the Cubs might just win, but count me as skeptical that that will actually happen

      • cubtex

        LOL. This has been Sveum all year :)

        • paulcatanese

          Sveum’s lineups are strangely reminisant of a manager we all knew all to well that failed and failed again and again.
          And that ex-manager is laughing his head off while fishing with his paid vacation.

      • DWalker

        yeah, these C team lineups make no sense (there is no A team most days).  Playing the matchup game only works if the players being used are better then the first stringers they are replacing, let alone decent in the first place. The only reason I can see why Dale keeps trotting these guys out as starters is A. people are more hurt then we realize and they are trying to protect them, B. they are trying to build any trade value they can from guys like Baker, Mather and Johnson or C. Dale is overthinking the room and is about as inept as half the people here think he is.

        At least put Clevenger in to start, Hill really is that bad

      • Zonk

        It should be noted, though, that Barney and Baker have under 40 ABs this year vs. LHP.  Barney has a decent career mark, and Baker mashes; small sample size here. 

        I would rather see Campana in there than Johnson, but other than that, the real problem is not who we are playing today, but what the options on our roster are. 

        We aren’t a good offensive team no matter how we slice it, this is what rebuilding looks like.

        • brent carmona

          Yes Zonk, agree this is rebuilding.

          I’m sure baker and johnsons numbers will return to their career numbers versus lefties (i know bakers is real nice but I forget johnsons numbers but I’m sure they are above avg).

          I bet baker has the best at bats today. Just a prediction though :/

      • Cloycub13

        Could not agree more Aaron, I have cut Sveum some slack but this is getting close to last year. Why no Clevenger? Neil mentioned how bad they have been against lefties in the preview, this could very well be why. And no Lahair is just a joke, he shows signs yesterday of getting back on track and he is benched in favor of Jeff Baker, why, because Baker allegedly hits lefties well and Lahair, well noone knows. I am staying the course but lineups like this are starting to bug me.  

        • Zonk

          Why no Clevenger?  Probably because he is coming off the DL with a muscle strain, and caught last night, and this is a day game in hot weather.  I bet he catches tomorrow, giving him today off is probably prudent.

    • paulcatanese

      Neil, there is only one lineup for me.

      Campana – CF
      Castro – SS
      DeJesus – RF
      Soriono – LF
      Mather – 1B
      Stewart – 3B
      Barney – 2B
      Clevenger – C

      Until I see something close to this I don’t mind missing games
      when not televised. This should be (in my opinion) against leftys and rightys.

      • John_CC

         You want to bench LaHair for Mather, permanently?  The kid just went through his FIRST slump of his ML career and every one is throwing him under bus.  Ridiculous.

        • cc002600

           Agree !!

          Not only that, I don’t get the fascination with Mather. 

          What has he ever done ? 

          • Zonk

            For starters, he’s been released by 3 organizations in the last 18 months.  What does that tell you?

            Mather is roster filler:  Nothing more

          • cubtex

            Yep. If he plays everyday we will all see that.

          • paulcatanese

            Zonk, agree, Mather is a roster filler, but besides Castro or maybe DeJesus so are all the others.

          • paulcatanese

            Excites my wife, she thinks he’s cute:)

        • paulcatanese

          Not really thinking about LaHair’s bat, but his glove. Watch closely, he has 0 range, problems with throws that are not right on the button, and has a very difficult time with ground balls.
          I am not throwing him under the bus for his bat but his glove, its hard to hit enough as it is and when he sees more defensive chances than he does at bats it just dosent even out.
          If he were in the outfield it wouldnt be as bad,his chances are a lot less than an infielder.
          Since the NL dosent have the DH it takes both sides of the ball to be succesive.
          Thats all John, nothing against the kid, and wish he fielded better.

          • cubtex

            LaHair is a platoon DH on a small market team. He whiffs on throws that are not right at him. I have not seen a 1st baseman in quite some time that misses as many balls thrown to him as LaHair. Pickoff attempts are an adventure. I am sure pitchers realize this too and are afraid to throw over there. Do you think some of Garza’s problems are due to LaHair? I am not saying it is 100% due to him….but you know you have to make a perfect throw instead of relaxing that could have something to do with it.

          • Joey U

            Maybe that’s the reason he’s
            been in the Minor’s so long.

        • cubtex

          what career?

          • John_CC

            What the hell is your problem? You know exactly what I am saying. 

          • cubtex

            What don’t you understand? You said the kid is going through his first slump in his ml career. Read my response again……

          • RickinMSP

            At best, LaHair is a poor man’s Jack Cust.  Niether one can field and Cust has/had more power.

      • Chadaudio

        Paul, I saw you talk about moving DeJesus to 3rd and Campana to leadoff a few days ago and I think you are completely right.  That being said, after your first 3, I don’t really agree with you though.

        I do also agree that Mather should get more playing time, by subbing at 1B and 3B, but I still see LaHair as the usual 1B.  LaHair hit a big slump, but I think he deserves to keep a lot of his starts.

        Finally, I think Cardenas should be playing 2B against RH pitching.  He doesn’t have the BA to prove it, but he has hit the ball hard, and has put together some pretty good at-bats.  I’m just over Barney.  I think Cardenas can play as good defensive 2B as Cardenas, and I want to see if he can hit better (and with more patience) then Barney.

        • gary3411

           Yes, Cardenas to 2B vs ALL righties.

        • Zonk

          I wouldn’t mind seeing Cardenas more, but he is a poor 2B by reputation.  That’s one reason the A’s let him go.

          Neither he or Barney are the long-term answer, and I think Barney offers more long-term, because he can at least play SS and 3B and be a utility guy.

  • Josh

    Kinda stinks that they didn’t let Hill go, although I totally understand the need for depth. He brings so little to the table.

    • Zonk

      He’ll be gone when Castillo comes back.  Hill is a better defensive catcher than Lalli.  They are both hopeless with the bat.

      Both will be DFA’ed next time the Cubs need a 40-man spot

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Robert Whitenack is making his first start today

    • cubtex

      Let’s hope he builds on last years success! They need arms and more arms

  • Josh

    Mather stinks batting 3rd. He is hitting .200 — Not that Brett Jackson is tearing it up, but I am hoping at some point this summer that he replaces Mather. I would much rather see him playing CF and in the middle of the lineup. He has 366 ABs at AAA so I realize he is “not ready” per Thoyer math.

    • Zonk

      Mather is a better hitter than .200, but he isn’t really that good.  He’s pathetic as a #3 hitter.  There is a reason he has been released by 2 organizations.

      B-Jax is not near ready.  He is on pace for 200 Ks in a full-season at AAA, and thats against AAA pitching.  I have my doubts that he is even a major-leaguer, let alone a #3 hitter.  He’s lucky to be hitting .243 down there.

      • Dnuge

        Exactly right about Jax and his K’s !  I would forget abou thim till perhaps next year & that is a long shot, lets face it, he is a K guy ! and that is not going to change

        • Zonk

          You’re right, he will always be a high strikeout guy.  That’s OK if you bring other stuff to the table.  Look at Drew Stubbs; he is comparable in many ways to B-Jax. 

          We can live with high Ks if he hits for some power, takes a walk, and plays decent CF, all things B-jax is capable of doing.  But 200 Ks is just too much to be successul in the majors.

          • cubtex

            I agree with the poor mans  Drew Stubbs comparison. BJax is a good athlete and will do some good things and frustrate at times but lets see what he can do. Bring him up this year and give him a shot. What do they have to lose?

          • daverj

            Drew Stubbs isn’t so good himself so I’m not sure a poor man’s Drew Stubbs is any better than a 4th outfielder.

        • gary3411

          a strikeout is just another out

          • Zonk

            Not really. 

            You can’t advance a runner on a strikeout

            If you put the ball in play, it’s going to fall for a hit sometimes regardless of the quality of contact

            The only successful hitters that strikeout close to 200 times a year are power hitters.  And B-Jax is not a power hitter.  The above reasons are why.

          • cubtex

              K is better than a double play

          • gary3411

            that it is

          • daverj

            Yes, but less balls put in play means more outs overall and a low batting average.  At least when a ball is put in play there is a chance for a hit. 

          • gary3411

             Sure, but letting taking a close pitch for strike three, also has a chance to be called a ball (maybe ball 4). While if you are completely fooled by that same pitch and are only going to put it into play weakly, you are better off taking your chances the umpire calls it a ball. This is what Jackson does.

  • CubsTalk

     Phil Rogers talked about the Cubs Dempster and Garza in his morning wake up column…..it seems Dempster wants to stay, but at a high price…..he is one of Ricketts favorites……this is a problem of being an owner, you become more a personal fan than a business owner when you are close to a player……Dempster is a great guy, his best years were with the Cubs…..did allot for local charities….but it is time to move on and end your career with a team that is close to making it to the World Series……Dodgers lost Lilly for  awhile…..Dempster would make a perfect fit for the Dodgers…….as for Garza, he had two bad starts on two bad teams…..he is still under Cubs control for another year…….is it better to keep him until next year or trade him this July?….many factors could play in for Garza….injury might happen, current trade value could increase or decrease, or do we want him to be part of the Cubs future?…….if Garza is part of the Cubs future, is he worth $16 million per year based on a five year contract.?……we just got rid of several large contracts, does Ricketts want to take on another one?……I say no…..Garza will be highly in demand, especially in the A.L. divisions where he has a high winning percentage over teams in the Eastern division……Would the White Sox trade for Garza if they were on top in late July?….Dempster & Garza are two key players that can bring back near ready prospects to play for the Cubs…..while Dempster and Garza are in the post-season this year, Soriano will be asking his agent, why couldn’t he get a trade for him?  With a contract for that much money still owe on it,  Soriano needs to spend some of it while on vacation in October and skipping the post-season.  That is the price you pay for being too greedy.  All Soriano has to do if he wants to be in the post season is to tell his agent to re-work his contract with the Cubs and get him to a team who will play this October. 

    • Zonk

      Players can’t negotiate a pay cut for themselves mid-contract, just to get where they want to play.  The players union won’t let them. 

      We are stuck with Soriano’s contract as-is, and we have to negotiate in that basis, IF he wants to move.  I don’t believe we will ever be able to trade Soriano.

      • paulcatanese

        Thank you Zonk, I hope that explains a lot to people wanting Soriono to lower his salary to get moved.
        In his case (Soriono) it’s hoped he can continue his streak, makes it a lot more palatble for a lot of people.
        He is not as bad as people think he is.

      • CubsTalk

        Players can re-work their contract by delay payments with large yearly payouts….have done in the past with players like Ortiz, Bonnilla and others.   If Soriano whines why he couldn’t be on a playoff team at the end of his career, he has no one to blame but himself and his greedy agent.

        • CubsTalk

           Sorry, not Ortiz, I am thinking of Mo Vaughn.

        • Zonk

          You can re-work the contract, but the players union only allows you to do that if the player gains financially.  The Bonilla thing is a disaster for the Mets, they are paying him money literally through 2035.  That’s the last time you’ll ever see that kind of contract.

          The reason the players union forbids it is because they feel it would set a very bad precedent

          • daverj

            Zonk nailed it.  Any reworking of Soriano’s contract will be a loser of a deal for the Cubs financially.  The player’s association will only allow it if the restructured contract’s net present value to the player goes up.  The teams always lose on restructured deals.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Welington Castillo is expected to be out at least another 10 days then go on a rehab assignment.

    • BosephHeyden

       So who is due to come back first:  Soto or Castillo?  Because if it’s Soto, Castillo can have his rehab assignment followed by rest of the season in Triple A…he needs it.

  • Dorasaga

    This is why Mather bats 3rd and fields 3rd. I like this lineup.

  • Dorasaga

    What’s with Brently making fun of “Head lay”? Who told him to pronounce so as if to be racially aware? I mean, is Head-lay a new way of getting hooked with… you know, I’m saying this way in case under-12 kids (like, real kids who don’t b*ng or sm*ke or dr*g themselves in toilet) are present at CCO.

  • Dorasaga

    Just heard Mag-O to officially retire in Detroit this Sunday. He was a pain in the neck for Chicago (the S*ckies), but a great drive for the Tigers – drove them to the World Series in 2006. I rooted for them that time as both an underdog and a potential kick-ass to knock some redbirds down their flight path.

    • Zonk

      He was a good player for the South Siders.  I remember two other things about him.

      First, that controversal knee operation in Austria, and the contract clause he had around that with the Tigers.  Very unusual. 

      Second, unlike most Venezuelan players, he is very vocal in his support of Hugo Chavez.  He gets political that way.

  • Dorasaga

    Jeff had some problem locating his pitches. Got into full counts two batters-straight. Fatigue crossing into June?

    • Dorasaga

      And another 3-2, well, the result is a strikeout but if Jeff pitches like this during interleague, I doubt a DH-loaded lineup (not the Padres or M’s) will let it go.

    • Zonk

      I can’t watch the game, just Gameday, but I understand the wind is blowing out.  Shark is doing OK it seems, but this Stults is very surprising.  

      Stults was picked-up off waivers 12 days ago, and now he’s shutting us down with the wind blowing out?  Bad.

      • Dorasaga

        I think it has something to do with his experience in Japan. Look at Vogelsong and Lewis. They weren’t great pitchers in Japan, but brought back a way that Major League hitters can’t handle.

        Hiroshima’s 2010 stadium was a shoreside hitter’s park, where Stults pitched, so it’s not like he never got used to howling winds…

    • Dorasaga

       20 pitches last inning, according to Gameday.

    • Dorasaga

      10 pit. @4th, 7 pit. @3rd,  18 pit. @2nd (two full-counts), 9 pit.  first inning…

      I wouldn’t be concerned if he faced another lineup, but this is the Padres we’re speaking…

  • Aaron

     well that sucks…1st and 2nd no outs…Stults with command issues, so naturally Soriano swings first pitch GIDP…nice…

    then next inning Quentin goes yard b/c Hill is a dumba$$ callking for a fastball after Quentin had roped one for a double his last AB….nevermind the fact he just came off DL and thus is behind other hitters regarding breaking pitches…

    cubs lose…bank on it…they won’t score

    • Aaron

       it’s a damn miracle…Reed and Barney actually got hits

      • Dorasaga

         Halleluiah!

  • John_CC

    Is the wind cranking out again?  I have heard or seen any of this game, just caught he score and wonder where the bats went.

    • Dorasaga

      Yes it is. Flying far if hit up the air. Shark hits but a low liner to left-center (nothing to do with wind), solid contact, though.

  • Dorasaga

    Said it and I’ll it now: Barney is clutch, need to be in the lineup for this current Cubs team…

    • Zonk

      ….and nice AB by Shark!  Came back from 1-2, and took a couple key pitches.

      • Dorasaga

         Very quick return by Stults. Deep double hit the upper part of the UnderArmor…

        • Zonk

          He was just doubled off 2nd on a fly to end inning….can’t see what happened in Gameday, but sounds like a baserunning mistake to me.

          • Dorasaga

            He misread that ball, even looked back his shoulder to check where it went. Seems like he thought it’s too late to return (just rounded 3rd base), kept running all the way home.

          • Zonk

            Nevermind, saw replay on Gameday….nice play by Soriano, but runner has to make sure that ball drops. 

  • Dorasaga

    Soriano’s great diving catch, saved a run and double-played man-on-2nd.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Soriano with an excellent diving catch

  • John_CC

    Just tuned in for one of the nicer catches I’ve seen in LF and by none other than Alfonso Soriano!  That was a darn nice play!  I admire his guts and drive, but I’m afraid he’s gonna really blow that knee out.

    • Dorasaga

      At least he’s not saving it for tomorrow, as he did under the watchful eyes of Piniella before he napped, and the easy eyes of Quade before he lost touch with the real world.

      • John_CC

        True that.  And a Homer to go with his web-gem!  I had a feeling that was coming.

        Classic Soriano streak, enjoy it while it lasts. 

        • cubtex

          He has done is his entire, long and productive ml career :)

          • cc002600

            if striking out 160 times a year, while never walking,  turning every flyball into an adventure, and make stupid baserunning errors every other day a “productive ML career” then yes, he has been great.

            and oh, his next clutch hit will be his first !!!

            LOL

          • cubtex

            Don’t blame the contract on the player. Look at his career numbers. He had a hell of a career! I wish the Cubs had anybody in their system who could put up the type of numbers Soriano had in his career!

          • cc002600

             did I say anything about the money ?

            Look at his stats the last 4 to 5 years and you’re going to tell me that he has been good ??  Are you serious ?

            Who cares what he did for the yankees 10 years ago.

          • cubtex

            Alfonso Soriano 14 year Career MLB Average

            .274 Avg
            40 2B
            34 HR
            94 RBI
            26 SB

            One Hell of a MLB Career!

          • cc002600

            Like I said, look at what he did fo rthe cubs in the last 5 years.

            Absolutely HORRIBLE !!!
            when your LF gets 65-70 RBI batting in the middle of the lineup with .300 OBP,  can’t catch a cold in OF, strikes out a ton, doesn’t walk, can’t run, you are in BIG trouble.  Other than that, he’s Matt Kemp !!

            and oh, how quickly we forget.  Don’t make  me read off his stellar postseason numbers !!!

            LOL

            WHAT A HORRENDOUS PLAYER !!!!

             

          • cc002600

             Not too mention, he’s so great, but the cubs couldn’t give him away for a bag of balls

            LITERALLY

          • paulcatanese

            Got to throw one little thing in here on Soriono’s defense.
            When ever ,over the last five-six years has anyone worked with him on defense the way that it has been worked on this year, and it shows.
            One must credit Soriono for buying into that and working harder than he has in the past,
            and it is paying off.
            He will never win a gold glove but if effort brings one he would deserve it.

          • cc002600

             Paul, I don’t disagree. But is that where we are now ?  a guy gets paid 19M a year and we have to “give him credit” for working hard ?

            call me crazy, but isn’t that what he’s supposed to do for 19M ?

          • paulcatanese

            Agree, if he actually knew what he was supposed to do.
            I honestly believe he needed direction on how to play the outfield.
            Just another example of managers thinking, oh my this guy is making a ton of money, we dont dare approach him on how to play.
            Think about the managers he played under sice coming to the Cubs. Either
            lazy, wrapped up in their own thing, or just happy to have a job.

    • Zonk

      To Soriano’s credit, he has worked at his LF play, and I feel he has progressed to “Average”.  Which is a big improvement.

      Putting LaHair out there would be a defensive downgrade at this point

      • Dorasaga

        Plus some dingers will be nice :-)

        Lahair needs to play, so are Mathers and Cardenas.

    • daverj

      Soriano has actually been playing solid defense this season for the first time in his Cubs career.

  • Dorasaga

    Mather’s been pulling the ball too much, as I’m seeing him over-placed his whole body weight in front of the plate in the follow-up, resulted to a lot of groundballs.

    • John_CC

       I’m ready to see a new experiment:

      Campy
      Castro
      DeJesus
      Soriano
      LaHair
      Barney
      Stewart
      Catcher

      • Dorasaga

        Maybe every six days:

        Barney, ss
        LaHair
        Stewart, 2b
        Soriano
        DeJesus
        Campana
        Cardenas
        Catcher

        I want to see Castro fully rested to stay competitive whole season. Campana never got on-base enough to be a steal-threat. Dejesus has the patience to keep the inning going if Fonzi falters with his “swing free” mode.

        I’m also concerned that Shark pitched too many. This is his first full year as an every 5-day starter. He needs to be skipped every month or so, and under good pitch-count.

        • John_CC

           That’s a wacky line-up, I’ll have to think about that one.

          Castro should be rested once in a while, but at the same time he’s so young and healthy, he can handle starting 155 games.

          I definitely agree on Samardzija…my fantasy team needs him to pitch into September!

          • Dorasaga

            Thank you, I’ll take whacky as a compliment. We need brain teasers.

            I’m definitely agreeing. My rotisserie team got Shark. The H2H, well, Tony will attest. :-)

      • paulcatanese

        Well John, wer’e pretty close on the lineup afterall.
        Only difference is LaHair and Mather,could be apples and oranges. I’ll live with your’s if you’ll live with mine, can alternate:)

        • John_CC

           They can platoon. :)

          I think DeJesus is the best option for the 3 hole at this point, even with very little power, there aren’t many options. As Dorasaga pointed out, Barney seems to get hits when they matter, unlike almost everyone else, so I think he’d be good in the middle of the bottom half.  Plus, I like the L-R-L all the way through.

          • paulcatanese

            Ok John,I’ll buy that.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Soriano with #7

  • Aaron

    alright…enough of Hill FOREVER…dumba$$ doesn’t even begin to describe his pitch calling….3 straight fastballs to Quentin. Results?
    2B, hr, 1B

    • Aaron

       oh…almost forgot his move to call time while the Shark was in his windup the other inning

      • BosephHeyden

         Veteran leadership.  Also, I don’t actually think we won a game with Koyie Hill catching so far this year.  Call it one less bat in the lineup, defensive liability throwing out runners, or poor pitch selection, but I can’t imagine a single part of this that is coincidence.

        • John_CC

           He is NOT here for his veteran leadership, Sveum has never said that. It was Quade’s and Hendry’s company line.

          When Soto and/or Castillo come off the DL, Hill is gone.

  • Cheryl

    How many errors has LaHair made at first base? Is he that bad on defense? And doesn’t his value to the cubs go down the more he is platooned? It just seems like this on again off again play for him would mess with his playing ability on defense and offense.

    • paulcatanese

      Cheryl, it’s not so much the error’s, its the plays he dosent make, the scoops, the ground balls he should get,things like that.

      • Cheryl

        Thanks. I just wanted something concrete to go by. If he doesn’t make plays that he should make, then they should let him go and turn elsewhere,

  • cubtex

    Soriano now just 3 HR’s shy of the team lead.

    • cc002600

       do you think he can keep his sizzling OBP above .300 ??

      LOL

    • John_CC

      thanks for the update!

      DeJesus, 8 game hitting streak to keep the inning alive.

      • cubtex

        Ha! Good one

    • cc002600

       That’s awesome !!
      I think we should extend him for another couple years !

  • Dorasaga

    A bad call at first went to Shark’s favor, or else, would have been bases-loaded and 1 out.

  • John_CC

    I think they should have pulled Shark. 

  • Dorasaga

    Shark bats for himself… I don’t think it’s a good idea to run him out for the 8th. Maybe a deceptive move here since 2out and no man on base? Well, he walked. Can’t ask for more… No PR, I guess Shark will pitch then…

    • Dorasaga

       Ok, just checked Gameday @87 pitches. Let’s get this done in 10 pitches, alright? :-))

  • Dorasaga

    Dale’s walking on a fine line. Total pitch count doesn’t always tell the whole story. Shark never “cruised” throughout the game, was slowing down the game, even shrugged his shoulder to loosen up while men on base. I shouldn’t read too much into his body language, since Verlander could show similar signs while completing games at 120+ pitch, but since the fourth inning Shark seemed fatigued.

  • Devin Hill

    Shawn camp. pat yourself on the back. absolutely beautfiul

  • Dorasaga

    7 pitch duel, nice job by Mather, quick defensive swings fould off 102 mph; one of them would be strike-3… Nice swing turned 8th pitch to double

    • John_CC

       And an insurance run off the flame thrower.

      Bad baserunning by Baker.

      Russell to close?? Oye

  • Dorasaga

    This will be Russell’s first PRO SAVE, said Len, never saved in minor, either.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

       Yes, first professional save for James Russell

  • John_CC

    I wish Soriano wasn’t in LF … and right on queue as Brenly said it…

  • BosephHeyden

    Not entirely sure Camp needed to come out, because that was four batters no one else on this team would have been able to get out in a row.

    I know they signed Camp purely as a “catch lightning in a bottle” move, but I think they’ve caught a few sparks so far.

    • paulcatanese

      Agree, when I first saw him I thought, man I could hit this guy:)

  • Zonk

    I guess Jeff Baker plays a pretty good 1B.   We might see more of him vs. lefties now, at least until Rizzo gets here.

  • Dorasaga

    Good win and feels good for the “little guys” (Camp, Baker) got the job done. Go for the sweep tomorrow.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs beat Padres 5-3 Tuesday afternoon

    Jeff Samardzija: 3R, 8H, BB, 8K in 7+ IP; Alfonso Soriano: 1-for-4, HR; Joe Mather: 2-for-3, 2 2B, BB, R; Darwin Barney: 2-for-3, 2 2B, RBI, R

  • Aaron

    Boy, what a game by Samardzija, Camp, and Mather. Those guys basically were the difference in the game today.

    …and I didn’t even want Camp…still not sold on him…but for now, he’s at least above average and might bring some talent back at the deadline.

    As for Hill….my goodness…can the nightmare be over already?!?!? Did anyone else notice how crappy his game was today…and always has been? From awful pitch selection to poor throwing ability and some of the worst hitting you’ll see from a MLB hitter….he just needs to go. I would rather have Apodaca in there, or bring Sandy Martinez out of retirement than Hill…..hell, even bring Brenly out of the booth to catch.

    What totally baffles me is the fact they signed Hill because he “had familiarity with the pitching staff”….hmmmmmm….if that were the case, then bringing Brenly out of the booth to catch might really have legs…LOL….I have familiarity with the Cubs’ pitching staff too…doesn’t mean I should be catching. Yes, the Cubs lost Clevenger, Soto, and Castillo all in a row, but Apodaca was signed for insurance, and Lalli, while not the best behind the plate, hardly played at all, while Hill got most starts.

    This is their first win with Hill behind the plate, and the significance is that they won IN SPITE OF HIM behind the plate, versus because of him behind the plate…in fact, go review the tape…his pitch selection with Shark on the mound, and Quentin at bat was some of the worst game-calling I’ve seen in a long time.

    • John_CC

       Clevenger should get a start tomorrow. I hope. 

    • Zonk

      We lost our top 3 catchers in a week, we didn’t have alot of options.  I’m not a huge fan either, but he isn’t that bad.  For what it’s worth, the last 3 years the ERA of pitchers throwing to Koyie Hill is lower than the team ERA.  So he can’t suck that bad.

      But whatever, he’s gone in 10 days regardless…

    • Zonk

      PS:  But I agree on Camp, I didn’t like that pickup, but I guess he had something.  He’s been OK.  If he keeps it up, we will have the option to flip him to somebody for a low-level prospect at the deadline

    • paulcatanese

      Agree, and as I recall, last year I just closed my eyes when he came to bat,I figured at least 4 outs per game.

  • CubsTalk

    I believe the Cubs have found someone to beat up on!

  • matthew8510

    can we play sd every game

  • cubtex

    Josh Vitters with another HR at Iowa. He is on a hot streak! Hopefully we will be seeing him up with the big club this year.