All Good Things Come to an End – Cubs 1, Cardinals 4

Game Ninety-Two – Cubs 1, Cardinals 4
WP – Kyle Lohse (10-2) LP – Ryan Dempster (5-4) Save – Jason Motte (21)

Ryan Dempster’s best stretch in a Cubs’ uniform came to an end Friday night in St. Louis. The Cardinals pounced on Dempster in the first inning and scored three of their four runs on four straight singles in the opening frame. Dempster settled down somewhat before hanging a slider to Matt Holliday in the third. Holliday hit a titanic blast off Dempster that traveled an estimated 469 feet … the longest home run ever hit at the new Busch Stadium.

Ryan Dempster worked through early struggles and ended up completing six innings of work. Dempster allowed four runs on seven hits with two walks and two strikeouts … and lost for the first time since May 25. Dempster’s scoreless innings streak ended at 33 1/3 innings, the seventh longest stretch of shutout innings for a Cubs’ pitcher since 1908.

Manny Corpas and Scott Maine kept the Cardinals off the board in the seventh and eighth innings but the Cubs’ offense could not put anything together against Kyle Lohse and the Redbirds’ relief corps.

Darwin Barney (0-for-3 with a RBI) drove in the Cubs’ only run with a sac fly in the second inning. Bryan LaHair (1-for-2 with a walk and a run scored) reached base twice and scored the Cubs’ only run. David DeJesus (2-for-4) had a multi-game while Alfonso Soriano (1-for-4 with a double) recorded the Cubs’ only extra basehit.

The turning point in the game came in the top of the third. With the Cubs down 3-1, David DeJesus and Starlin Castro (1-for-4) reached on back-to-back singles to start the inning. After Anthony Rizzo (1-for-4) was called out on strikes (2-2 pitch), Alfonso Soriano (1-for-4) hit into a 1-4-3 inning ending double play.

Dale Sveum’s offense managed only seven hits, six singles, and one walk Friday night. The Cubs finished the game 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position and left seven on base.

With Friday’s loss, the Cubs dropped to 38-54 on the season … David DeJesus and Starlin Castro grounded out to second and short respectively to start the game. Anthony Rizzo pulled a 1-1 pitch into right for the first hit of the game. Alfonso Soriano got under a 1-2 pitch and popped out to Furcal in shallow left to end the inning. Kyle Lohse hit his spots in the first and threw only 14 pitches, nine for strikes.

The Cardinals came out swinging against Ryan Dempster and their aggressiveness led to three runs on four singles. Dempster had trouble throwing strikes to Skip Schumaker and fell behind the Cardinals’ second baseman 3-1. Dempster found the zone and caught Schumaker looking for the first out … and in the process ran his scoreless innings streak to 33 1/3 innings.

Allen Craig pulled a 0-1 pitch into right and advanced to second when Matt Holliday drove the first pitch into right center. Carlos Beltran stepped in with runners on first and second with one down and drove Dempster’s 1-1 pitch into left. Allen Craig scored and the Cardinals took a 1-0 lead on the first run allowed by Ryan Dempster since May 30.

Yadier Molina ripped Dempster’s first pitch into right. Holliday scored as LaHair missed the cutoff man and threw all the way to third. Beltran made it to third easily and Molina took second on LaHair’s mistake. With runners on second and third with one down, Lance Berkman pulled the first pitch to Anthony Rizzo. The chopper led Rizzo to the bag. Rizzo stepped on first and threw to the plate … but was late and Beltran scored the Cardinals’ third run. With Molina at third, David Freese looked at a 1-2 offering for the third out.

After one, the Cardinals had a commanding 3-0 lead.

Bryan LaHair worked a walk to begin the second then advanced to third when Steve Clevenger pulled a 1-2 pitch into right. Darwin Barney lifted Lohse’s first pitch into center. LaHair tagged and scored the Cubs’ first run. Luis Valbuena flied out to left and Dempster hit the first pitch he saw into center for the third out.

Ryan Dempster set down the Redbirds in order in the second. Dempster retired the side on only six pitches, four for strikes (27, 20 strikes).

The Cubs wasted an opportunity to cut into the Cardinals lead in the third. David DeJesus led off with a single to right. Starlin Castro hit a bullet back up the middle (0-1 pitch) that went off of Kyle Lohse’s glove and landed just out of the reach of a diving Rafael Furcal. Anthony Rizzo was caught looking at an inside pitch on a 2-2 offering for the first out. Alfonso Soriano hit the first pitch he saw right to Kyle Lohse … 1-4-3 double play.

Ryan Dempster retired Allen Craig on a routine grounder to short. Matt Holliday stepped in and Dempster fell behind 2-1. Dempster hung his next offering and Holliday crushed it well over the wall in left field. The ball traveled an estimated 469 feet … a new record at new Busch Stadium.

Dempster’s struggles continued after Holliday’s mammoth shot. Carlos Beltran smoked a 0-2 pitch into right … and right to Bryan LaHair. Dempster jumped ahead of Yadier Molina 0-2 before eventually walked the Redbirds’ catcher. Lance Berkman pulled a 0-1 pitch into the right field corner, his first hit since returning from the DL. Molina held at third on Berkman’s double. David Freese worked a walk to load the bases with two outs. Dempster jammed Furcal on a 2-1 pitch, shattered his bat and Furcal lined out to Barney to end the inning … 59 pitches for Dempster after three, 39 for strikes.

After three, the Cardinals led 4-1.

Bryan LaHair led off the fourth with a bloop single to left … but that was it against Lohse in the inning. Clevenger and Barney struck out swinging and Valbuena grounded out to second for the third out.

Ryan Dempster retired the Redbirds in order in the fourth. Dempster threw 73 pitches, 48 for strikes, in the first four innings.

Other than a one out single by David DeJesus, the Cubs were not able to chip away at the Cardinals’ lead.

The Cardinals did nothing against Dempster in the fifth … 80 pitches for Dempster after five, 54 for strikes.

The Cubs trailed 4-1 going into the top of the sixth.

Alfonso Soriano reached on an error by Furcal to start the sixth. Soriano smacked a 3-2 pitch right to the Cardinals’ shortstop. Furcal bobbled then threw low to Berkman. The Cubs could not capitalize on the miscue. LaHair looked at a 3-2 pitch for the first out, Clevenger flied out to left center and Barney flied out to left.

Ryan Dempster stayed in the game and retired Berkman on one pitch (flyout to left) to start the sixth. Darwin Barney took a hit away from David Freese on a tremendous play on a ball ticketed for centerfield. Rafael Furcal lined a two-out single to right but Dempster retired Lohse on a grounder to Barney for the third out.

Ryan Dempster allowed four runs on seven hits with two walks and two strikeouts on 94 pitches, 64 for strikes, in six innings of work.

The Cubs did nothing against Lohse in the seventh.

Manny Corpas replaced Dempster to start the seventh. Skip Schumaker singled to right (2-2 pitch) and Allen Craig hit a 3-1 smash toward the hole at short. Luis Valbuena made diving stop, got to his feet quickly and threw to Barney to force Schumaker. Barney’s throw to first was just a little late. Jon Jay took over at first for Craig and stole second on a 2-1 pitch to Holliday. Corpas ended up walking Holliday and the Cardinals had runners on first and second with one out.

Carlos Beltran dribbled a 2-2 pitch toward the hole between first and second. Barney did not field the ball cleanly and settled for the sure out. With runners on second and third with two down, Yadier Molina fouled out to Rizzo for the third out.

Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo went down quickly against Mitchell Boggs to start the eighth. Alfonso Soriano drove a 1-0 pitch into right center. Soriano limped into second with a two out double. Mike Matheny made the slow walk and brought in lefty Marc Rzepczynski to face Bryan LaHair. Dale Sveum countered with Jeff Baker. Baker worked a full count but could not hold up on 3-2 pitch and was called out to end the inning.

Scott Maine retired Berkman on a pop fly to Rizzo in foul ground for the first out in the eighth. David Freese singled to center ahead of a double to left off the bat of Rafael Furcal. With one out and runners on second and third, Maine struck out pinch-hitter Matt Carpenter and pinch-hitter Tyler Greene to end the inning.

The game went to the ninth with the Cubs trailing 4-1.

Jason Motte threw only six pitches in the ninth to close out the game … six.

Box Score from Yahoo Sports

Matt Garza is scheduled to face Jake Westbrook on Saturday night.

Follow ChicagoCubsOnline on Twitter: @TheCCO


  • paulcatanese

    Just three words about tonights game, flat,flat,flat.
    And LaHair, he’s toast, see’s his own destiny, and is playing that way.

    • Aaron

      I agree

    • brent carmona

      Lahair still fits in with the philosophy though, grinds out at bats, he will take his walks plus provide some pop. I bet he will hover around the .250 range as a major leaguer ( don’t think he is toast however). he’s still in a ‘adjustment’ period I think, I noticed he has trouble catching up to the fastball once a couple of breaking pitches have been thrown. I want to see him make it, but won’t be too crushed since he is not really a big part of the future.

      • paulcatanese

        The one tell tale sign that LaHair is struggling big time was his last at bat. 3-0 was worked back to 3-2 and took strike three right into a left handed hitters wheelhouse, above the knees,slightly on the inside half of the plate, he has to hit that pitch, and he took it. If any pitch that could have been hit out, that was the one, and again, he didn’t offer.

    • cubtex

      Talk about a slow bat. LaHair can’t get around on any mid to upper fastball. He will probably be playing overseas in a year.

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        Trade LaHair to Japan and bring back Matt Murton!

        • cubtex

          Lol. Good one!

        • paulcatanese

          Mike, thats not all that bad, the Cubs could use right handed hitters that are not too old.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Ken Rosenthal: Source: Dodgers “very unlikely” for Cubs’ Dempster. Prefer not to trade better prospects for rentals. Garza (thru 13) more logical target.

    • Brp921

      What prospects do you think Garza would command from the Dodgers Neil? Do you think they have enouph talented prospects worth trading Garza for?

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        Obviously im not Neil but…Lee of course, but man they dont have that much outside of him. Fingers crossed he goes to Toronto!

        • daverj

          I think Theo is having a big problem here as no teams are offering much in the way of prospects for Dempster.

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            Yeah the offers for Demp may be a little lower than expected, im just glad he hasnt rushed it and is doing his due diligence to make sure that he gets the offer that benefits us most on Demp. I still think Demp ends up in Detroit, the gut tells me so. Id much rather get back a Smyly or a Crosby and some others, then Gould and Withrow.

          • daverj

            Hope you are right about a Tiger deal. I’d take either of those guys for Demp.

          • Denver Mike

            Why assume the worst? Isn’t it equally reasonable to think that the reason the Dodgers are “very unlikely” to trade for Dempster is because the other teams are offering big packages that the Dodgers just can’t match? Haven’t most of us been in agreement all along that the Dodgers system wasn’t as strong as the other interested teams?

            To assume that Theo has a “big problem” without any evidence to support it seems to be jumping the gun a bit.

          • daverj

            I certainly could be wrong, but I said “I think” that is the case. I think if an offer of a quality prospect was out there, the Cubs would have grabbed it instead of letting Demp start last night and tried gambling for a better deal.

        • Brp921

          I like Toronto’s prospects as well, Mike, but in looking at the Dodgers top prospects there are a lot of live arms in their systems that have not met up to their hype. It seems to be a trend with this regime to pick up numeous prospects like them in hopes of hitting the jackpot with a few of them. That may be what Theo wants to do, pick up about three or four of those 1st round picks of the Dodgers hoping one or two of them will pan out. What do the Cubs have to lose with Dempster only being signed through this year?

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            egh, i think its true to say that we have looked for some players that fit that description as far as DFAd guys other small trades and what not. But I just dont see a chance being taken at this particular point, with the assets we are shopping, on some guys who were drafted high but under performing. I would think hes aiming for guys that are performing at or above expectations in these deals.

          • Brp921

            I was talkiing specifically about Dempster, and would be talking about a quantity enouph to have a chance that one or two would be successful in the long run. I would hold out for a good package for Garza and if we couldn’t get it I would keep him. The Dodgers do have several pitchers that were first round picks. They must have had something going for them. Wouldn’t you agree?

          • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

            Of course I agree that something was going for them, I mean Gould and Withrow both have potential upside, though they havent faired all that well in the minors so far. I do think this would be a trade thats only made if everyone else backs out. But if would also go against them wanting an arm back thats close to mlb ready in the Demp deal. Detroit, Washington, Atlanta, and Stl would all provide talent thats a bit closer, and better, then the Dodgers.

      • Aaron

        I know you asked Neil but I would never trade Garza to them. Gould, Lee, and Withrow are all guys you’d ask for, and yet not one of them has lived up to the hype

        • Brp921

          What is your opinion of Allen Webster Aaron? I see him as a guy who could have success in Wrigley Field.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Others beat me to the punch but I agree. The Dodgers do not match up well with the Cubs for Garza. The talent level needed back for Garza does not exist in the Dodgers system.

    • Aaron

      I called it with his reduced trade value….now nobody seems to want him for more than a mid-level prospect

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        This could just be posturing by the Dodgers. Pulling themselves out of the Dempster talks to make it appear that they are worried about his value now, after a start that wasnt exactly that bad. In turn hoping to lower what other teams are offering so they can get back in on it with Gould and Withrow.

      • Brp921

        I respect your opinion Aaron and appreciate your comments, but again I disagree, Dempsters value did not go down with last nights performance (IMHO) it was already established. He hasn’t been traded yet because other teams have not wanted to give what the Cubs are asking. That could change as situations change, but it is risky business for the Cubs to wait to long, as anything could happen…injuries… a bad stretch for Dempster…prospective teams falling out of contention…

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From Jon Heyman: Braves, Nationals, Cardinals still in Dempster Derby. Dogers appear out. (unlikely, said Ken Rosenthal)
    http://cbsprt.co/MBd6QO

    • Denver Mike

      See I have to think the Braves, Nationals, and Cardinals all could offer better packages for Dempster than the Dodgers, and that is the root cause for them being “very unlikely” to sign him now.

      I find that much more probable than his 3 run first inning yesterday tanking his value. He’s not a youngster with unknown potential, he is a proven veteran with 15 years of historical data to reference when trying to predict how he will perform moving forward.

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

    Just a heads up for everyone, “This Old Cub” is playing on MLBN right now, those of you who havent seen it should check it out. We miss you Ron!

  • cubtex

    Everyone is assuming Dempster will just accept a trade to any team that is in contention. I don’t get that feeling. After hearing him in a couple of interviews…..I get the feeling that he would only go to a few situations. The Dodgers being one with his good buddy Ted Lilly being there. Didn’t he say that he enjoys being the hammer for a change…..instead of the nail? I am not sure he will accept a trade to any AL team.

    • cubtex

      Seen some tweets that the holdup with the Dodgers is that the Cubs are holding out for Lee hoping that Dempster will sign an extension with the Dodgers. The Dodgers will not give up Lee for a 2 month rental….but if Dempster agrees to a 1 year or 2 year extension….they will. That makes sense.

      • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

        I could get behind that idea somewhat, still not overly impressed with Lee, Id like to see more included if an extension was done. Maybe this is where Lahair would fit in and they could do Lee, Gould and Withrow for Demp and Lahair. Id be comfortable with that. Sorta.

        • cubtex

          If they can get Lee(the Dodgers top prospect) for a 35 year old starter….I would jump on that in a hearbeat. I don’t even know if the Dodgers would even want LaHair but if that is what it takes…..I will help him pack :))))

          • Brp921

            Agreed. I also like Webster.

        • cubtex

          White Sox aquired Brett Myers from the Astros.

    • paulcatanese

      I agree with you,in fact IMO Dempster only goes to the Dodgers or stays where he is right now. The Dodgers know this and are not inclined to overpay for him.
      What is frustrating for the Cubs and their fans is Dempster is overated and will not bring the return everyone is hoping for. Age, prior history dictates what other teams are offering.
      I would say he is not moving unless its the Dodgers, period.

      • cubtex

        I think that is where Dempster will end up as well. I imagine he and his agent are trying to work out a deal with the Dodgers beyond this year. My prediction is that the Dodgers sign him to a 2 year extension with the Cubs paying the remaining salary for this year and the Dodgers send Zach Lee back. I would take this scenario.

        • triple

          That is very likely the best scenario yet. Unless some other team is willing to match a prospect close to that caliber w/o the new contract. That is if Demp is willing to go somewhere else.

      • Brp921

        I think that you and cubtex have nailed it Paul. I think a return of Lee for Dempster and an extention would be a good deal. If they can’t get the extention done then I would still do a deal with them and get as many of the lesser pitching prospects that I could and hope one of them would pan out. Dempster is not destined to be a part of the Cubs future.

  • cubtex

    As I said yesterday….I respect Theo for trying to get the most possible value for Dempster. I was shocked he started last night. That being said…..that should absolutely,positively be his last start as a Cub. Hopefully some team will increase their offer before his next start……but if not…..get what you can get. If the best offer is Gould and Withrow….take it.

  • Aaron

    Unfortunately last night’s start likely reduced his value

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

    nah, he recovered well and pitched a good game after the first, showing that he didnt completely implode, and recovering from adversity, is worth just as much as having another good outing.

  • Brp921

    I believe his value remains the same. He is not going to command the value he could have in past years due to the new CBA. To say that his value went down, however, because he gave up a couple of runs, I believe, is a stretch. His career numbers show what kind of pitcher he is, not the last forty innings. He is an above average veteran, soon to be free agent, pitcher who will definately help bolster a pitching staff during a playoff run, and teams in the hunt are not willing, so far, to give up a top prospect that they would for a frontline starter that would remain with the team for a couple more years. I tend to agree with Cubtex, if he’s not a part of the future then get what you can and move on. We can always resign him if he wants to play here and the new regime decides to go that way.

  • triple

    The Dempster situation is kind of puzzling right now. If in fact Demp will only go to the Dodgers, then the Cubs are kinda screwed, unless it is some sort of sign/trade deal where the Cubs get a higher prospect. I would think that Dempster may be willing to go to Boston, but who knows? I don’t think his value was lowered after last nights start. In fact I think it shows that he has the ability to recover from a rare bad inning rather easily. I do think the matter of lack of compensation pick is really throwing a monkey wrench into the equation as teams are not willing to give up as much, but over the next 10 days I’m sure a couple teams will get more desperate and be willing to up their ante, but I don’t think the Dodgers will. As long as Dempster stays healthy (which I am not worried about) I think they will get something decent in return. I’m skeptical that he’ll even draw 2 prospects, and I almost think getting one who’s got better chances is a much better idea (although risky), as I see that as much better than a compensation round draft pick especially since it should be someone much closer to being ready to pitch w/ the team.

    I also read about a potential deal sending Maholm back to the Pirates, which I really think the Cubs should just jump on at this point, if it is true. Jeff Locke and Rudy Owens were the guys. I just don’t know the validity of it, or if both are really offered. And I know Maholm has a club option for next year, so that deal seams fairly even, and at that point is much better than sending Dempster to LA for Gould and Withrow.

  • Brp921

    He probably had some butterflies fluttering around early with the scoreless streak and the trade talk too. I thought he recovered nicely as well.

  • Aaron

    Every starter has bad starts no matter who he is. The reason I made the assertion was because teams look for guys who are on a roll down the stretch. since this is the best he’s done outside of a couple years ago, teams might believe he’s come back to earth and will be barely above average which is what he’s been throughout his career

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

    Yeah he probably wasnt too mentally prepared to go yesterday, with expecting a deal to get done.

  • Brp921

    Also, Holidays bomb was definately well hit, but the hits in the first were just well placed and happens when a pitcher is pitching to contact. He did not pitch badly at all.

  • BosephHeyden

    I’d add onto that and just throw in there what BRP said above you: those first few runs were all well placed singles. And it has been stated during the games on more than one occasion that Dempster has looked so good because he pitches to his defense.

    A game like this, where the hitters beat the defense early, and a GM will look at that and start to wonder how well that pitcher will do with his defense. A team like the Dodgers, that has had the injuries they’ve had early on, that may not have the best defense…that quickly lessens his value to that team.

    So, to the Dodgers, maybe Dempster really is only worth Gould and Withrow. I don’t believe for a second that’s his actual value and Team Theo would be extremely braindead to take that offer (which, thankfully, I don’t think they are), but to the Dodgers anyways, that’s all a pitcher like Dempster will be worth giving up, because his performance relies on what they already have, and since they’re obviously trying to upgrade everything, they’ve acknowledged what they have isn’t the greatest.

    They can get a better return from the other teams that have been tied to Dempster, that much I have no doubt. If Dempster only wants to go the LA, then he can ride out the rest of the season with us, and we can see if this team can finish respectably. Otherwise, just move on, because the Dodgers were never realistic anyways: the second they touted the fact that they were very willing to give salary relief for players rather than emphasizing prospects, they became a team we could just ignore.

  • paulcatanese

    Aaron, going to throw this out here, among the three, Dempster, Garza, Maholm, IMO I think
    the best equal return would be for Maholm, just have a gut feeling about that. Thats of course if the Cubs are wanting to trade him.

  • Brp921

    I agree that they should try to get the best they can for Dempster and obviously they are since he’s still here, but this season is wasted, so I want to get as high a draft pick as we can. We’re rebuilding, let’s worry about finishing respectfully at some point in the future.

  • Brp921

    A couple of points… (this is if Dempster will only go to LA)
    While I agree with a lot of what you said, since Demp is not going to be a part of the Cubs long term future, if we can’t get Lee or Webster for him, I would rather go for several pitching prospects with the hope of winning with one of them, than shooting for one that may or may not make it. The Dodgers top twenty prospects are mainly pitchers with several being 1st round picks so they can afford to part with some of them.
    Secondly, if we can’t get a young pitcher with a lot of upside for Maholm then I wouldn’t trade him. He’s cheap and the Cubs need major league ready pitching, and Maholms pretty decent.

  • triple

    Yes, Maholm is decent and wouldn’t be a bad guy to have around next year. But if a team is willing to give up a couple prospects (the 2 mentioned above are both 24 & lefties who can throw strikes) I think that is the best value you can get for Maholm, who I don’t think is in their long-term plans anyway. Unless he pitches lights out for the next year, his trade value will not be as high a year from now.

  • Brp921

    I guess I missed the prospects you mentioned but that would be ,I think, a good trade.

  • Dorasaga

    Maholm is a decent #4. It’s rare contending teams pay or trade anything of significant value for such role. We’re just happy that he can eat innings, and some of them quality innings (save the bullpen). We are talking an expected 4-5 ERA and 150 IP next year. What’s the point for the Pirates to trade him back?

  • http://www.facebook.com/mike.simala Mike Simala

    the 2 guys you had mentioned earlier, I would do that trade in a second for Maholm. If that is true, that would be a real nice move.