Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Rockies – 08/24/12

Game One Hundred Twenty-Four: Cubs (47-76) vs. Rockies (50-73)
Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 183/914
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Jeff Samardzija (8-11, 4.17/1.28) vs. Drew Pomeranz (1-7, 4.87/1.50)

The Cubs return to the field this afternoon after a much needed day off. Thursday was the Cubs last scheduled day off for nearly three weeks … the Cubs play 20 games in 20 days beginning this afternoon.

The Cubs kick off their longest homestand of the season this afternoon with the first of three against the Rockies. The Cubs will welcome the Brewers in for four games beginning Monday and the homestand concludes next weekend with three against the Giants.

Dale Sveum’s team struggled mightily during the seven-game road trip in every aspect of the game … but that has been the case on the road just about all season. The Cubs have been a different team at Wrigley this season and own a 30-28 record at the old ballyard compared to a 17-48 mark on the road. 23 of the Cubs final 39 games are at home and the Cubs have only two more road trips … a 10-day, three-city trip through Washington, Pittsburgh and Houston that begins on Labor Day then a six-game, two city trip that begins in Colorado on September 25 and ends with their second trip to Phoenix for three against the Diamondbacks.

The Cubs will face Tyler Colvin, D.J. LeMahieu and the rest of the Rockies for the next three games. Due to the schedule makers, the Cubs have not played Colorado this year and will not travel to Colorado until the final full week of the season. The Cubs were 2-4 in the six games against the Rockies last year.

After today’s matchup of Jeff Samardzija and lefty Drew Pomeranz (Cubs 12-21 in games started by southpaws this season), Brooks Raley will be recalled from Iowa to square off against Alex White on Saturday. Chris Volstad is scheduled to take the hill in the finale on Sunday afternoon against Jhoulys Chacin.

The Rockies are playing their best ball of the season right now. Colorado has won five in a row and 12 of the last 17.

The Cubs are 15-24 in their last 39 games and with 39 left on the schedule … this afternoon all starts with Jeff Samardzija.

Jeff Samardzija is coming off a rough outing against the Reds. Samardzija lasted just five innings in game one of Saturday’s day-night doubleheader and surrendered four runs on six hits with no walks and five strikeouts. Samardzija was bitten by the longball. All four runs the Reds plated were via three home runs.

Samardzija has been solid in his first full year as a big league starter. Samardzija must work on his consistency and not just from start to start but from inning to inning and pitch to pitch. With his subpar outing the last time out, Samardzija is 1-3 in his last four starts with a 4.07 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP … since the break, 2-3 in seven starts with a 2.91 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP.

Jeff Samardzija has pitched rather well at Wrigley this season (4-3 in 10 starts with a 3.36 ERA and a 1.18 WHIP) and should welcome a return to his home park. Samardzija has not allowed more than two runs in his last three starts at the old ballyard.

This afternoon will be Samardzija’s first start against the Rockies. Samardzija has faced Colorado four times in his career and does not have a record with a 2.00 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP (two runs on seven hits with three walks and six strikeouts in nine innings).

Rockies Career Numbers against Jeff Samardzija

  • Dexter Fowler – 2-for-5 with a triple
  • Carlos Gonzalez – 1-for-4
  • Ramon Hernandez – 1-for-1
  • Jonathan Herrera – 0-for-3

The 23-year old lefty has struggled for the Rockies this season. Drew Pomeranz was part of the Ubaldo Jimenez deal with the Indians last year and has not pitched well in limited time at the big league level.

Pomeranz is coming off a no-decision (like many of the Rockies’ starters due to the team’s pitch count restrictions) against the Marlins. Pomeranz allowed two runs, one earned, on three hits with four walks and three strikeouts in four innings. Pomeranz has not posted a win since July 6 and is 1-3 in six road starts this season with a 5.68 ERA and a 1.46 WHIP.

In seven starts since the break, Drew Pomeranz is 0-4 with a 7.06 ERA and a 1.67 WHIP.

Drew Pomeranz has never faced the Cubs in a regular season big league ballgame … and no one on the Cubs active roster has faced Pomeranz at the Major League level.

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    Mather – RF
    Vitters – 3B
    Rizzo – 1B
    Soriano – LF
    Castro – SS
    Castillo – C
    Jackson – CF
    Barney – 2B
    Samardzija – P

    • cubs1967

      going for the draft pick…………….let me hear ya; a 1, a 2 ,a 3…….Rockies sweep!!!!!

      • dakeller80

        The Cubs are really going to have to work hard to catch the Astros though. . .especially if they let ol’ man Roger toss a few. By the way, that’s a potentially brilliant move by Houston and Clemens: generate some extra gate/advertising revenue, reset the 5-year HOF clock to further distance Clemens from his farcical PED trail, and tack on a few more guaranteed losses to secure that draft pick. Oh, but what a sad circus it would be.

        • BosephHeyden

          It’s an exceptionally brilliant move if they manage to get Clemens in for the September 10th series in Houston. If there was ever a team a 50 year old pitcher that needs to solidify his HoF status needed to take on, it’s the Cubs.

          • paulcatanese

            At least now if Clemens hits anyone it won’t hurt, been clocked in the mid-80′s,and for sure
            it he does pitch,it will be against the Cubs.
            I wonder if Cub hitters can request to have his arms checked for “track marks”?

          • John G

            Are you saying that Roger doesn’t have much juice left in him?

          • paulcatanese

            No John, Roger say’s he’s been clean:)

          • YoungCub

            Can anybody post the article on espn about the future rankings? I’d like to see what espn says about the cubs but dont wanna pay for insider thanks. Go cubs

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            If someone posts this, please post a recap/summary. I receive not-so-nice emails when paid content is posted. Thanks.

          • Tony_Hall

            Sorry, I usually try to just do a little bit of the article, targeted towards the Cubs.

            They should just think of it as advertising, as I know some people who have signed up for it, after having seen bits and pieces of it that I have posted. I think it is well worth the cost to sign up.

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            Tony, no worries and for what it’s worth I agree. It is okay to post a summary or a few sentences but full paragraphs are frowned upon.

          • Tony_Hall

            Not sure if this is the right article or not.

            http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/8285687/mlb-future-power-rankings-2012-nos-16-30?addata=2009_insdr_mod_mlb_xxx_xxx

            The Cubs are ranked 16th

            The Overview – No reasonable Cubs fan expected a turnaround this summer, but it was a frustrating first year for the new regime. Then talks about trade talks for Dempster being a distractions and Garza’s injury wrecking his trade value. And the positive momentum that the Castro extension is bringing.

            The Dilemma – Is whether they can maximize the return on Garza, Lahair and Soriano, if they can trade him.The Cubs were busy in their first year under Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer. They traded for Anthony Rizzo, drafted Albert Almora with their first pick in the 2012 draft, signed Cuban outfielder Jorge Soler and traded Dempster and Paul Maholm at the deadline.

            The System – They talk about the enormous amount of talent they have added since last offseason, pointing out Soler, Vizcaino and Almora.

            On the scale of 0-30
            Majors 2
            Minors 13
            Finance 23
            Management 27
            Mobility 25
            Overall 50.3, good for 16th on their list.

        • Brp921

          I hadn’t heard that. Clemens signed with Houston? Wow. I guess we’ve seen it all now. Lol.

        • Tony_Hall

          Clemens signed with the Sugar Land Skeeters. They are an American professional baseball team based in Sugar Land, Texas and play in the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball, an independant league, not affiliated with major or minor league baseball. The team was founded in 2010.

          • paulcatanese

            In other words Tony, his contract could be picked up by just about anyone?

          • Tony_Hall

            He doesn’t have a MLB contract. He is a free agent available to anyone willing to sign him.

            My guess is this a stunt, as a favor by Roger to the owners of the Skeeters, whom I am sure he knows, to generate interest in their team and boost the attendance at the end of their season.

          • paulcatanese

            Thanks Tony, I assumed as much, but one never knows with egos and when its over.

          • Tony_Hall

            Clemens was one that I idolized as a kid. I really wish that some of these guys would have realized they were good enough to not have to go down the paths they did.

          • dakeller80

            And the Astros plan to have scouts at his games. GM claims they’ll pick him up if he’s “MLB ready.” (even though Houston doesn’t have too many people on their 40-man that are MLB ready)

      • redlarczykg

        Anyone know who is the top stud pitcher the Cubs could draft #1 next year?

        • paulcatanese

          Don’t know for sure, but he should be available for the big push in 3 or 4 years, as he’s still in the 8th grade,

        • cubs1967

          actually right now next year’s draft is as weak as this year’s depending on any break-out years from HS or college kids so……..Mark Appel would be number 1 right now. lots can change. that would be interesting though. and yes, 2016 is the projected time to stop “tanking” as almora-baez-soler-vogelbach all will have had 3 yrs of minors……then again vitters is on year 5……..so never know.
          funny how the a’s can compete and not tank……..isn’t it theo?

          • gary3411

            Cuz they’ve been building through their system for a while. We are on year 1.

          • RynoTiger

            whoa Gary…don’t you dare throw logic and facts into this argument. yes we know that this is year one and that Team Theo had nothing to do with building an inadequate and impactless farm system…but don’t you dare bring up that fact into this argument.
            we’re tanking because Team Theo wouldn’t spend money to bring us a championship and be competitive because under Hendry we spent out the yin yang and got 3 World Series titles..wait..no we didn’t..sorry about that..I miscounted. what we got though was a few years of wins and the ability to continually add payroll to bring in the right players…wait..no we didn’t..sorry about that…I was thinking of another GM and team.
            ok so I don’t have many facts to blame Team Theo..so I’ll just blame them out of spite!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Hey, Cubs got a hit and a run … Soriano with #23

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Castillo with #4

  • Tony_Hall

    BJAX!!!!

    #2

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Jackson ties it with his first dinger at Wrigley

    • Zonk

      Nice to see him not strike out, though that was a real meatball that Belisle hung up there

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs beat Rockies 5-3 on Friday afternoon – Jeff Samardzija: 3R,2ER,6H,2BB,7K,7IP; Alfonso Soriano:
    1-for-4,HR; Welington Castillo: 1-for-3,HR; Brett Jackson: 1-for-3,HR; Joe Mather: 1-for-4,RBI,R