Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Cardinals – 06/20/13

Game Seventy-One: Cubs (29-41) vs. Cardinals (46-26)

  • Game Time – 7:15pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: WGN – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 183/844
  • Location – Busch Stadium, St. Louis

Scott Feldman (6-5, 3.05/1.10) vs. Lance Lynn (9-1, 3.56/1.19)

The Cubs wrap up their seven-game road trip tonight with the last of four in St. Louis. Dale Sveum’s team 3-3 over the first six games and a win tonight would not only give them a winning trip but splitting a four-game series against the best team in baseball in their park would be considered a success.

The Cubs offense continued to struggle on Wednesday night and it will not get any easier with Lance Lynn on the hill for the Redbirds. Outside of the first inning on Tuesday, the Cardinals’ staff has held the Cubs in check over the first three games. The Cubs will have to take advantage of the few opportunities they get from Lance Lynn while Scott Feldman does his best to limit the high-powered Cardinals’ offense.

Tonight it all starts with Scott Feldman

Scott Feldman is coming off another excellent start and a run scoring hit the last time out. Feldman held the Mets to one run on two hits with a walk and six strikeouts in seven innings. Feldman was sharp and drove in more runs than he allowed. Feldman picked up his first win since he beat the Sox on May 29.

Feldman has been very successful just about every time out of late since a rough start to his Cubs’ career. Feldman has recorded eight quality starts in his last 10 games, the only two blemishes came against the Reds.

The Cubs need for Feldman to pitch the way he has for the most part this season. The only concern is, the Cardinals’ offense is very deep and is similar to the one in Cincinnati. Tonight will be a good test for Feldman … and hopefully he can increase his value.

Scott Feldman is 2-3 in seven road starts this season with a 3.54 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP. Feldman makes his first regular season appearance against the Cardinals tonight. Feldman faced the Redbirds during the 2011 World Series and gave up five runs on five hits with five walks and two strikeouts in five appearances (five innings) out of Ron Washington’s pen.


Matt Holliday (2-for-5 with two walks), Carlos Beltran (1-for-2 with a walk) and Ty Wigginton (7-for-14 with a double and a walk) are the only three Cardinals that have faced Scott Feldman in a regular season big league ballgame.

Lance Lynn likes pitching against the Chicago Cubs and had not lost a game to them in four starts until his last outing at Wrigley on May 7. Travis Wood outpitched Lynn and the Cubs beat Lynn … the only loss he has suffered this season. Even in defeat, Lynn dominated the Cubs. Lynn allowed two runs on four hits with a walk and eight strikeouts in seven innings … a Nate Schierholtz two-run homer was the difference in the game.

Lance Lynn is coming off his worst start of the season. The Marlins scored seven runs on nine hits against Lynn in Miami and the big right hander walked three while striking out six over five innings. Of course Lynn won the game, that’s the life for a starting pitcher for the St. Louis Cardinals.

Lance Lynn is 5-0 in seven starts at Busch Stadium this year with a 2.54 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP. Over his last three starts, 2-0 with a 6.00 ERA and a 1.44 WHIP. Lynn is 4-1 in six career games, five starts, against the Cubs with a 2.70 ERA and a 1.08 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Lance Lynn

  • Darwin Barney – 1-for-12 with a double and a walk
  • Welington Castillo – 1-for-2
  • Starlin Castro – 5-for-16 with a double and a triple
  • Cody Ransom – 1-for-5 with a double
  • Anthony Rizzo – 3-for-8 with a home run and a walk
  • Nate Schierholtz – 1-for-5 with a home run
  • Luis Valbuena – 0-for-5 with two walks

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

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

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Iowa Cubs manager Marty Pevey said Josh Vitters had some sort of setback at extending spring training coming back from injury

    Will post when have more details

  • Ray Ray

    It is painful to watch Castro bat these days. You can see he has no chance.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil
      • Ray Ray

        I can’t understand why they just don’t sit him. What is the “right” time? They are not competing for anything.

      • Brp921

        Neil, there have been some varying opinions on Castro’s problems hitting. I have been of the opinion that the coaching staff has tried to change his approach and make him a more selective hitter and it has hurt his approach at the plate. Lately I have seen bits of information, such as the article you’ve linked above suggesting that his mechanics at the plate have changed since his rookie year, thus causing his problem. I would be interested in your opinion on what his problem is, if you would care to give it.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          You are reading the reports correctly. Many thought that the coaching staff and front office were trying to “fix” him so he would take more walks and be more selective, as you mentioned.

          I posted the link for the exact reason you pointed out.

          The scouting report on Castro is that he has problems with the fastball. If the opposing pitcher stays away from the breaking stuff early, he will expand … like he just did. Once you get ahead of him, then he chases everything because he changes his approach with two strikes.

          Castro is not catching up to the fastball and it looks to me like they are pounding him middle in. His timing mechanism, the leg lift, before he strides seems more exaggerated to me and he appears to be more open than in previous years. I remember the last home run he hit, back in April, and all he did was stride toward the ball.

          From the way I understand it, they have tried to get him to go back to what made him successful and he is having trouble seeing what he is doing now compared to then.

          • Brp921

            Thanks for your reply Neil, I had to step away for a bit. I guess the change in his stance and leg kick are subtle enough that I hadn’t noticed. He is very open though. I hope he can fix it. Maybe he needs a prescription for some ADD medication lol.

          • paulcatanese

            You are correct and then some Neil. Too much movement in his approach, and it’s mostly sideways more than back to front.
            And the Cub staff can say what they want, the whole lineup is down, and watching close tonight, the majority have “open stance’s”.
            That type of stance is to protect the inside pitch, but only without that much leg lift. You are right, Castro is having problems middle in and that’s caused by bad timing with that stance.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    1-2-3 first for Feldman … two of those balls were smoked.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Welington Castillo’s second HR of the season
    tied the game at one in the third. Castillo’s last HR was on 4/8 vs. Milwaukee

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Looks like Molina swung

    **Edit … he did swing. Not close.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Excellent catch by Sweeney

    • calicub

      Very sweet! But Feldman’s getting squared up right now

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Sweeney just made another excellent catch

    • paulcatanese

      Like him, not saying Dejesus is bad at all, just that Sweeney looks good.

  • Tom U

    Here’s something that will make Paul happy: Guiseppe Papaccio is opening at shortstop for the AZL Cubs tonight.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      I was thinking the same when I saw the lineup

      • Tom U

        Do you know where they are getting the line-ups?

        • Tom U

          Never mind. Got it

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            Sorry Tom, working on the recap.

      • paulcatanese

        To you and Tom, BadaBing,
        and Bazinga, and thanks.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rodriguez hitting triple digits with his fastball

    • GaryLeeT

      Very cool to see, but all the batters he faced made contact outs.

    • paulcatanese

      And he has the fear and respect of all the umpires in the league:)

  • GaryLeeT

    Looking over Rondon’s body of work thus far in his professional career, and finding it incredibly unimpressive. This year’s Cub’s, and MLB’s worst pen, is the perfect place for him.

    • calicub

      I’d take him over Lendy castillo

  • paulcatanese

    Don’t know how the game will turn out, watching it on tape and just thru three.
    I will say Castro first two times up, he was absolutely brutal, funky, bad or what ever else.
    His stance starts out with his foot in the bucket, brings it in and then goes back with his foot in the bucket. He cannot, will not, ever not, hardly not ,ever in his lifetime hit the outside and low pitch. Still pulling his butt in from the last strikeout.
    Rizzo has not been doing much better, defensive strikeout, so he thinks, so it will not hit him in the leg.
    Second time around, wow, hits a soft can of corn to center.
    Gotta tell you guys, If I’m making this lineup out, Rizzo bats 7 and Castro bats 8, and if Wood or Feldman are pitching he moves to 7 and Rizzo and Castro 8-9. These guys are beyond brutal right now. This is not a funk, a slump, but a regression. Epstein can say what he wants, they are not even close to doing it.

    • Ray Ray

      I’m with you Paul.

    • Ray Ray

      And I don’t know how Theo cannot hold the coaching staff accountable for the struggles of these 2 players who the FO locked up as core pieces?

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 6-1 to #Cardinals on Thursday night – Scott Feldman:
    5R, 6H, 4BB, 4K in 5.1 IP (105 pitches, 60 strikes)

    Castillo: 3-4, HR;
    Barney: 1-4; Rizzo: 1-4; Valbuena: 0-2, 2BB; Cubs offense: 1R, 5H, 2BB