Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Brewers – 04/08/13

Game Seven: Cubs (2-4) vs. Brewers (1-5)

  • Game Time – 1:20pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 183/844
  • Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Edwin Jackson (0-1, 3.60/0.80) vs. Marco Estrada (0-0, 7.20/1.80)

Weather permitting … The Chicago Cubs will play the first game of the season at Wrigley Field this afternoon, the 100th season opener at the old ballyard. What was known as Weeghman Park opened on April 23, 1914 and was the home of the Federals of the Federal League. The team later changed their name to the Whales. When the league went under at the end of the 1915 season, the Cubs moved to the park and played their first game at what is known now as Wrigley Field on April 20, 1916. The field became known as Cubs Park in 1920 when the Wrigley family purchased the team and was changed to Wrigley Field in 1926.

The Cubs open a very difficult 10-game homestand today. After three against the Brewers, the Giants come in for four games. Following an off day next Monday, the Cubs host the Rangers before hitting the road for 10 games with trips to Milwaukee, Cincinnati and Miami.

Dale Sveum’s team is coming off a rough trip to Atlanta. After taking two of three in Pittsburgh, the Cubs lost all three to the Braves. Following today’s matchup of Edwin Jackson and Marco Estrada, Travis Wood will square off against Wily Peralta and Scott Feldman is scheduled to face Kyle Lohse in the finale on Wednesday night. The weather is expected to be a challenge all week and could alter the pitching matchups.

While the Cubs have their own issues, the Brewers are dealing with injuries as well. Aramis Ramirez and Corey Hart are on the 15-day DL while Ryan Braun has missed time with a stiff neck and Jean Segura left Sunday’s game with a bruised left thigh.

The Cubs played some of their worst ball against the Brewers last season and dropped 13 of the 17 games against Milwaukee. The Cubs play the Brewers six times over the next 13 games and must figure out how to beat their division rivals.

Can the Cubs start the home portion of their 2013 schedule off with a win?

Edwin Jackson is coming off an Edwin Jackson outing in his first start of the season. Jackson was sharp early on then struggled for an inning before settling back down and ending his outing of a positive note. Jackson took the loss in Pittsburgh in the second game of the year after allowed two runs on three hits with a walk and five strikeouts in five innings. Jackson surrendered both runs in the fourth inning while the Cubs could not push across any runs against Wandy Rodriguez.

Jackson is makes his Wrigley debut in a Cubs’ uniform this afternoon. Jackson is 1-2 in three career starts at Wrigley with a 7.94 ERA and a 1.41 WHIP … but a majority of that damage was done in one start (1-1 in last two with a 4.85 ERA and a 0.92 WHIP).

Edwin Jackson makes his eighth career start against the Brewers today. Jackson owns a 3-2 mark in the first seven starts with a 3.06 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP … last season , 1-0 in two starts with a 0.60 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP (one run on 14 hits with a walk and 10 strikeouts in 15 innings)

Brewers Career Numbers against Edwin Jackson


  • Norichika Aoki – 0-for-7
  • Yuniesky Betancourt – 4-for-24 with a double and a walk
  • Ryan Braun – 5-for-19 with four doubles and a walk
  • Carlos Gomez – 0-for-6
  • Alex Gonzalez – 3-for-5 with a double, a triple and a walk
  • Jonathan Lucroy – 5-for-12 with a home run
  • Martin Maldonado – 1-for-1
  • Jean Segura – 1-for-3
  • Rickie Weeks – 3-for-9 with a double, a home run and a walk

Marco Estrada makes his second start of the season today after a rough outing against the Rockies. Estrada received a no decision after lasting just five innings and giving up four runs on nine hits with no walks and eight strikeouts. Both Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez took Estrada deep in Colorado’s 8-4 victory at Miller Park. Estrada will face a lineup this afternoon with a lot less fire power than the one in Colorado … and one he has dominated in the past.

The Cubs have had little to no success against Estrada since he moved into the Brewers’ rotation. Estrada owns a 2-0 record in eight games, three starts, against the Cubs with a 3.86 ERA and a 1.20 WHIP … at Wrigley Field, 1-0 in five games, one start, with a 6.97 ERA and a 1.74 WHIP. But last season, Estrada was 2-0 in four games, three starts with a 1.00 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP. The Cubs struck out 22 times against Estrada in 18 innings. Estrada surrendered just two runs on 13 hits and walked only two batters. If the Cubs do not change their game plan today, Estrada will continue to make the Cubs look bad at the plate.

Cubs Career Numbers against Marco Estrada

  • Welington Castillo – 0-for-2
  • Starlin Castro – 3-for-9 with a double
  • Steve Clevenger – 1-for-2 with a double and a walk
  • David DeJesus – 2-for-9
  • Anthony Rizzo – 1-for-6
  • Alfonso Soriano – 3-for-9 with three doubles and a walk

Wrigley Opening 2013

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    The wind is howling out, no word on Braun for today. Barney is taking grounders at Wrigley, could go on a rehab assignment this weekend.

    • CubsOpeningDay

      As disappointing as the sweep was in Atlanta the Cubs were in every game. The rebuilding process really weighs on the patience of fans but it’ll be worth it. Getting Barney back will hopefully give this team a little spark to get the fire burning.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Very good points

    • Roland Bowman

      Edwin Jackson is going to be to the test today.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Agreed …

    • paulcatanese

      Seems that when the wind is like today, fewer HRs are hit. Would have been a great day for a knuckleball pitcher. Are you going Neil?

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    DeJesus – CF
    Castro – SS
    Rizzo – 1B
    Soriano – LF
    Schierholtz – RF
    Castillo – C
    Valbuena – 3B
    Lillibridge – 2B
    Jackson – P

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Braun is in the lineup

  • paulcatanese

    The 100th opener today at Wrigley, I wonder how many
    homes were just outside the park? Surely tho not the same owners that are their today, with their hands out.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Raymond-Robert-Koenig/1295439291 Raymond Robert Koenig

      My thoughts exactly! The park was there before the neighborhood became what it is today.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    The Rangers DFA’d Jeff Beliveau

    • Bredstik

      Rangers acquired C Robinson Chirinos from the Rays.

      Sounds like it was for a PTBNL.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        According to Jon Heyman it was

        • Bredstik

          Interesting. It sounds like Beliveau was actually DFA’d to make room on their 40-man for Chirinos.

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            You are correct

    • Tony_Hall

      Talk about ironic….Beliveau DFA to make room for Chirinos to be depth behind AJ and Geo.

  • Ray Ray

    Ouch! Tough way to start opening day. 35 pitches in the 1st for E Jackson. Bullpen is getting a workout this early season.

  • RynoTiger

    call me crazy, but as a manger, I would have sent out the pitching coach in the 1st inning to talk with EJax to make sure he was focused and that he and the catcher had a good game plan to get Alex Gonzalez so as to try and prevent a big inning. especially coming off a sweep and knowing that you needed to have a positive emotional and psychological rebound, especially in the home opener. but that’s just me and the style I would have.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Castillo with a 2-run shot

  • gary3411

    Starlin Castro walk watch: 28 PA. He’s going backwards after the progress he made last year with his patience. I guess it’s just the player he is going to be and it really limits his upside.

  • Ray Ray

    How long will the Cubs go with DeJesus at leadoff if he continues like this? Out of the options this team has….I would prefer to see Castro there. Get him to the plate as many times as possible and he can steal a base. He thrived there in the past.

    • John_CC

      Unfortunately, DeJesus isn’t the only nor the biggest problem with this offense. BAD.

      Castro is not the answer at leadoff and there isn’t much point in putting him there with the rest of the lineup around him.

      • Ray Ray

        I agree that is not his ideal spot, but will this team do any better with him in the 2 hole? What is lost is that DeJesus hit only .239 the last 2 months of the year. He is a .240 to .250 hitter who cannot steal a base.

        • gary3411

          Batting average has little to do with scoring runs especially in the leadoff hole it means virtually nothing. He gets on base better than anyone in the lineup. That is why he is leadoff and that is why he should be leadoff.

          Castro has a pretty bad SB% in his career and he isn’t getting any faster. Gaining an extra base is rarely worth it if there is a 40% chance you will be thrown out. His base stealing days are limited and will be over soon if he doesn’t improve that percentage.

          • Dorasaga

            Interesting point. So I looked up Cubs batting OBP last year, minimum 50 plate appearances, and Reed Johnson was the best with 0.355; Sapelt comes next, 0.351; the two had limited duties.

            Dejesus, among every day players, got on base the most and provided his teammates a chance to drive in one more run at 0.350; the Cubs average OBP was 0.302, the bottom of MLB (only lead Mariners by a 6/100 of a fraction).

            Castro was 0.323; NL league average was 0.318. Castro was average.

          • Ray Ray

            if you recall he was 10 out of 13 the month of April last year and then they put the clamps on him and his percentage went down in limited tries. I never understood not having a stolen base threat at leadoff. It puts pressure on the defense and you can get in scoring position without giving up an out. Not saying he is ideal there but he would be a hell of lot better than DeJesus(who is now a platoon player anyways)

          • Tony_Hall

            It is far more important to have a high OBP over someone who can steal bases batting leadoff. It creates more runs.

          • Ray Ray

            Yet in his limited career…Castro is a .319 hitter with a .362 OBP batting from the leadoff position. What have they got to lose to see how it would play out this season? This team is brutal anyway!

          • Tony_Hall

            But that is not who Castro is, he is not a high OBP, as he has shown over his entire career. What we have to lose is Castro developing into the player he needs to be, and taking on a lot of extra wear and tear on his body trying to be a basestealer, something he is not.

          • Ray Ray

            He is 23. He is not a #2 hitter….agreed? He is a free swinger who does not go to the right side to advance a runner. He is not a bunter. On this team Castro is probably the best 1,2,3,4,5,6, …….you get my point. He is the best hitter on the tream.

          • Tony_Hall

            Not so sure on #2, though most likely he will be a 5 or 6.

            In the 2 hole he will get more fastballs and strikes with Rizzo behind, as teams won’t want to walk him. Ideally I would rather see him after 3/4 and maybe even a 5 hole hitter. But that is a few years away.

            How can you say he should bat lead-off then use that fact that he is a free swinger as an example.

          • Dorasaga

            I think Ray meant that a #2 (right now Castro) needs to be a hitter who has the discipline (not Castro), and thus, can advance runners. Castro doesn’t fit the #2 portfolio the better teams these days got.

          • Tony_Hall

            Agreed, that is why eventually he should be 5th or 6th.

          • Ray Ray

            yes thank you.

        • Tony_Hall

          Yet in August he had an OBP of 358 still. September it fell to 314.

          Overall his OBP is 350 which for this team makes him the best choice for leadoff for now.

  • Dorasaga

    Just dropped in to watch the last innings via internet… My first listening of Deshaies, he’s refreshing. Not as wordy as Brenly.

  • Tony_Hall

    Nice little comeback brewing…nice to be on this end for a change.

  • Tony_Hall

    Clevenger just missed the game tying pitch to him.

  • Dorasaga

    Now I’ll love to see Sappelt and his 0.351 obp to work and move the runners home!

    • Tony_Hall

      He has a good AB going, much better than Clevenger just did.

      • Tony_Hall

        And then he missed the pitch that could of won the game…..maybe not with the wind blowing in now.

  • Tony_Hall

    Henderson is blowing by everyone….is the wind blowing in that hard?

  • Tony_Hall

    If the wind was still blowing out that would of won the game. Nice to see some fight to the end.

    • Ray Ray

      If he was hitting leadoff…they would still be playing.

      • Tony_Hall

        Not exactly able to replay a game like that.

    • Dorasaga

      Yea, good effort for the first home opener of 2013. On the side note, Jaime Garcia just lost a homer to Phillips, whom annoyed everyone not from Cincy; that’ll hurt my fantasy team…

      • Tony_Hall

        Phillips works nice for me!

        • Dorasaga

          He even had a bloop double against Boggs. How lucky you!

  • cc002600

    I think we are on our way to #1 draft pick in 2014 !!

    • Ray Ray

      If it weren’t for the LASTROS….you would be correct.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 7-4 to Brewers on Monday – Edwin Jackson: 5R, 8H, 5BB (2 IBB), 6K in 6IP (101 pitches, 61 strikes) … Camp: 2R, 3H, 2BB (1 IBB), 2K, 1IP; Castro: 2-5, 2B, 3B; Castillo: 2-4, HR, 2RBI; Soriano: 2-4,2R; Schierholtz: 2-4, 2B, RBI, R; Marmol: 0R, 1H, 1BB, WP, 2K, 1IP

  • Ray Ray

    Can we fast forward to 2014?

    • cc002600

      I think you mean 2016. :-)

      • Ray Ray

        Yes but I am no spring chicken. Can’t give too many years away.

  • paulcatanese

    One cannot leave it up to the last man to let the game hinge on that at bat. That’s why they play nine innings.
    Having said that I knew that Castro would not be choosy up there. He swung at three pitches high in the zone and one low and outside.
    Point being it was not an smart at bat, he had a walk lined up, but would not take it.
    A free swinger he is, and have said as much the last two years. I agree with some that say he should bat leadoff, he would be in his element, not concerned to what he should do in a situation, and just do his thing. I say let him play his game with the bat and go on from there, he would do less damage to the hitting plan of the team. All one has to do is look what he does with no one on, hits.

    • Tony_Hall

      This AB he had 2 strikes and had to protect. Did he expand the zone, absolutely, but that is better than taking Strike 3. Not sure how a free swinger would make a good lead-off hitter.