Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Nationals – 05/11/13

Game Thirty-Six: Cubs (13-22) vs. Nationals (20-15)

  • Game Time – 3:05pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 186/844
  • Location – Nationals Park, Washington D.C.

Edwin Jackson (0-5, 6.39/1.63) vs. Stephen Strasburg (1-4, 3.45/1.15)

Weather permitting Edwin Jackson and the Chicago Cubs will try to put an end to two losing streaks this afternoon. The Cubs have lost five straight at Nationals Park and eight of the last nine while Jackson has not a won a game all season and the Cubs are just 1-6 in his seven starts.

The Cubs have struggled with the Expos/Nationals franchise for years but not like they have over the last two-plus seasons. The Cubs played some of their worst ball in D.C. a year ago and managed a 1-6 record in the seven games against the Nationals. The Cubs are just 4-11 in the last 15 with the Nationals.

If there is such a thing as a big game for a pitcher starting in May for a team that is nine games under .500, this would be it. Edwin Jackson really needs to put together a good outing this afternoon and lead his new team to a victory over his old team. The front office made a big commitment to Jackson in the off-season, and he has yet to pitch anywhere near what they expected. Jackson technically has two quality starts in seven tries but anyone that watched those games know that both outings were anything but a quality start.

Darwin Barney snapped a 0-for-24 skid with a double in the ninth inning on Friday. Barney is not the only player that needs to start producing at the plate. Alfonso Soriano quickly cooled off following his two home run performance last Saturday against the Reds … and the team as a whole needs to relax with runners in scoring position and just play the game.

Today all begins with Edwin Jackson

Edwin Jackson followed up what he called the worst start of his career against the Padres in which he allowed eight runs on 11 hits with two walks and six strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings with a similar outing against the Reds his last time out. Jackson lasted only five innings and gave up four runs on eight hits with a walk and five strikeouts.

Jackson’s problems have moved past the one-bad-inning issue, and he really needs to step it up today.

Edwin Jackson has not beaten the Nationals in two tries during his career. This afternoon marks only the second time that Jackson will start a game against the Nats. Jackson does not have a record in two games, one start, and has allowed only one run on seven hits with four walks and nine strikeouts in eight innings.

While Edwin Jackson has struggled throughout his career at Wrigley Field (1-5 in seven starts with a 8.53 ERA and a 1.79 WHIP), Jackson has pitched very well at Nationals Park (6-6 in 15 starts with a 3.35 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP).

Jackson should face a lineup that includes Bryce Harper this afternoon, but not Jayson Werth. The Nationals are expected to place Werth on the DL before game time.

Nationals Career Numbers against Edwin Jackson

  • Roger Bernadina – 0-for-3
  • Ian Desmond – 0-for-2
  • Danny Espinosa – 1-for-3
  • Adam LaRoche – 0-for-3 with a walk
  • Wilson Ramos – 0-for-3
  • Denard Span – 5-for-13 with two walks
  • Kurt Suzuki – 3-for-13 with two walks
  • Chad Tracy – 3-for-3 with a double and two walks
  • Jayson Werth – 2-for-7 with a double
  • Ryan Zimmerman – 1-for-4

For a while the best 1-4 starting pitcher in baseball award belonged to Jeff Samardzija, but that title now belongs to Stephen Strasburg.

Strasburg has set the bar extremely high and he has not pitched to expectations so far this year. Strasburg is coming off a not-so-good-by-Strasburg-standards start against the Pirates in which he allowed four runs on five hits with a walk and eight strikeouts in seven inningd. After just a horrible outing on April 7 in Cincinnati, Strasburg has allowed more than three earned runs only twice. In seven starts this season, Strasburg has held opponents to two or fewer runs four times, three runs once and four runs in his last start.

Stephen Strasburg is 1-2 in three starts at Nationals Park this season with a 1.35 ERA and a 0.75 WHIP … if that is struggling, maybe his critics should re-evaluate their unrealistic expectations.

Strasburg makes his second career appearance against the Cubs this afternoon. Strasburg received a no decision on Opening Day 2012 at Wrigley. Strasburg allowed only one run on five hits with one walk and five strikeouts over seven innings.

To say the Cubs have their work cut out for themselves this afternoon would be an understatement.

Darwin Barney (0-for-3), Starlin Castro (1-for-3), David DeJesus (3-for-6), Alfonso Soriano (1-for-3), Ryan Sweeney (1-for-2) and Luis Valbuena (0-for-2) have limited at bats during their career against Stephen Strasburg.

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Sveum says Garza will make at least one more rehab start after today’s outing at Double-A Tennessee.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    From the Tribune: Sveum said Edwin Jackson doesn’t have to worry about going to pen when Garza returns. Ditto for Wood and Samardzija. That leaves Feldman and Villanueva.

    • BosephHeyden

      Of those five, Jackson is the one who should go to the pen. Wood and Samardzija need to stay as starters for the good of the team, and Villanueva and Feldman aren’t going to have as much trade value as relievers.

      • http://theboardridersuite.wordpress.com/ Theboardrider

        Totally agree. Bad decision if that’s the case

        • John_CC

          Jackson has not been as bad as it appears. His “underlying stats” show a bit of bad luck but the main culprit is his bb‰ is way over his career avg. His k9 is up, GB/FB is up, HR/9 is down. His LOB rate is terrible. So really, I’m sure Jed and Theo are looking under the hood, if you will and see the Fielding Independent Pitching at 3.48 and expect him to get back “normal”. Sending him to the pen would be a mistake.
          http://www.fangraphs.com/statss.aspx?playerid=1841&position=P

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

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

  • SomeGuy27

    For anyone interested and you have the DirecTV sports package, a couple of the Fox stations are showing the OU/OSU game with Johnathan Gray pitching. Ironically, Fox Oklahoma does not have the game…

    • Ray Ray

      Thanks!

    • Ray Ray

      I hope the Astros take Gray. IMO, Appel is clearly a step above.

      • Ray Ray

        Gray’s day is probably done. 5IP 3 ER 6 Hits. 100 plus pitches. Not his sharpest outing.

        • Ray Ray

          He did have 8 K’s. Command wasn’t there today which led to a high pitch count.

  • BosephHeyden

    This is one of those games that, on paper, the Nats have no business losing and the Cubs have very little chance of winning. That’s why I fully expect the Cubs to win via blowout.

    • Brp921

      Hmm…

    • paulcatanese

      You called it. Lest we forget, it is the Cubs and the reverse is the best call.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Strasburg looks, well, very Stephen Strasburg. Already three strikeouts to first six.

  • Brp921

    I tried to copy and paste this from the Garza post I hope it works.

    TheWrongGuy Ripsnorter1•6 hours ago

    Here’s something to be on the look-out for fellow Cubs fans as the draft approaches and with the lefty hitting heavy outfield moves recently. I would watch the Cubs to be trading sooner rather than later and be in competition with other teams for a trade before the end of this month… The teams to look for a trade and probably in this order are …. Royals, D’ backs, Orioles, Padres, Rockies, and A’s. The Reds and Brewers are a maybe but probably not happening.
    Now the reason I name these teams is simple most of these teams are in the top of they’re divisions and looking to improve. They also ALL have a lottery draft selection they can trade. and we Cubs are looking for more draft choices.

    That’s my 2 cents.

    I posted this a day ago but thought I would re-post it here, to answer for the changes in the line-up. I could also be wrong. Who knows what Theo McHoyer are up to with the current roster but for sure chenges will be happening sooner rather than later maybe just my opinion…

    Brp921 TheWrongGuy

    To hopefully start some back and forth conversation:
    What would your, or anyone elses, opinion be on trading for a lottery pick vs. a former high round pick that has shown a little bit of what he can be expected to do?
    A lottery pick is somewhat of a crapshoot. Some make it some don’t.
    To get a former high pick for what the Cubs have available for trade would probably only net someone like a Viscaino, high ceiling, but with some kind of setback, which in itself is somewhat of a crapshoot

  • Pingback: Awesome Articles For Cubs Fans For May 11, 2013 | Chicago Cubs Dugout Online | Chicago Cubs Blog

  • Tom U

    According to MiLB.com, the Cubs have traded Iowa Cubs RHP Drew Carpenter to Colorado for a player to be named later.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Thanks Tom

    • The Maven

      It would be really funny if the PTBNL was Tyler Colvin or DJ LeMahieu.

      • Brp921

        Lol…

      • paulcatanese

        That would be the “Cats Meow”.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rizzo breaks up the no-hit bid. 7 ks for Strasburg through four

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    E-Jax with a 2-run double off Strasburg

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Weather is getting close according to Moreland, need to get through the fifth

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Strasburg lost it after Zimmerman’s error. Threw 42 pitches in the fifth inning. Rizzo with a nice two-run knock

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Valbuena is out, thought he hurt his hand on the slide into third

  • BosephHeyden

    Jackson’s starting to crack. They should really consider warming someone up so he doesn’t blow this one.

    • BosephHeyden

      When I said that they “should really consider warming someone up”, I guess I should have clarified and said “they should really consider warming someone up that isn’t Shawn Camp.”

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Game is far from over but is official

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Luis Valbuena jammed right pinky finger on slide into 3rd base. Going for X-rays

  • texcubnut

    Wow!! Cubs are 6 for 7 with RISP!! Is this our Cubs? Nice prediction BosephHeyden….Cubs winning via blowout.

    • BosephHeyden

      Unfortunately I was two for two: Jackson was showing cracks, and then did crack. Thankfully, they got him out of there when they did.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rizzo with an excellent catch

    • BosephHeyden

      He may be the “web gem”-iest of all the first baseman in the MLB this year.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs beat the Nationals 8-2 on Saturday afternoon – Edwin Jackson: 2R, 4H, 2BB, 3K in 5.1 IP (88 pitches, 50 strikes); 1-2, 2B, 2RBI, R, SAC

    Rizzo: 3-5, 2RBI; DeJesus: 1-4, 2RBI, R, BB; Ransom: 1-2, 2B, RBI, R; Barney: 1-3, 2B, BB, R; Soriano: 2-5, 2 2B, R

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Matt Garza completed his 3rd rehab outing
    on Saturday with AA Tennessee. Garza’s line: 0R, 3H, 2BB, 2K, 3.1 IP, 66 pitches, 40 strikes

    Not as sharp as in his last outing. Several close pitches were not called strikes. Garza not thrilled with the home plate ump. Error by Torres on the first batter of the game set up for a long first inning (30 pitches, 18 strikes).

  • paulcatanese

    Must have been a great game to watch. Cubs beat one of the best.