Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Pirates – 06/07/13

Game Fifty-Eight: Cubs (24-33) vs. Pirates (35-25)

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

Travis Wood (5-3, 2.75/1.01) vs. Francisco Liriano (5-3, 3.34/1.21)

The Cubs begin an extremely difficult seven-game homestand this afternoon with the first of three against the Mighty Pittsburgh Pirates. The Cubs wrap up the homestand next Thursday with the last of four against the Reds.

The Cubs more than salvaged the finale of the two-game series in Anaheim with a victory over Albert Pujols and company and will get back to work this afternoon following a rare second off day in the same week. The Cubs won three of five during the last homestand and begin play today just three games under .500 at Wrigley Field (13-16) this season. But the Cubs must start playing better against teams in their own division. The Cubs are just 6-16 against the NL Central this year.

After taking two of three against the Pirates in Pittsburgh to start the year, the Cubs lost all three in the Steel City and are just 2-4 in the first six games against the Bucs this season. The Cubs offense will not catch a break over the next three days either. The Cubs are 8-11 in games started by lefties this season and will face two very good southpaws over the next three days. After this afternoon’s lefty-lefty matchup of Travis Wood and Francisco Liriano, Jeff Samardzija takes on A.J. Burnett on Saturday then the series wraps on Sunday with Edwin Jackson and Jeff Locke.

Dale Sveum should load his lineup with as many right handers as possible. Francisco Liriano has dominated southpaws to the tune of a .083/.120/.077 slash line while right handers have hit .270/.330/.276.

This afternoon it all starts with Travis Wood

Travis Wood bounced back from his rough outing in Cincinnati and posted his tenth quality start of the season the last time out against the White Sox. Wood held the South Side to two runs on five hits with a pair of walks and six strikeouts in six innings. Wood not only quieted the Sox offense but he supplied a majority of the runs with the first grand slam of his career.

Travis Wood has pitched very well at Wrigley this season. Wood is 3-2 in seven home starts this year with a 2.44 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP and he will face a big challenge this afternoon with the Battlin’ Bucs. Wood beat Pittsburgh in the third game of the year back on April 4. Wood allowed just one hit with two walks and four strikeouts over six shutout innings.

For his career, Travis Wood is 4-4 in eight games, seven starts, against the Pirates with a 3.72 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP.

Pirates Career Numbers against Travis Wood

  • Pedro Alvarez – 1-for-9 with a double
  • Clint Barmes – 2-for-15 with a double and a walk
  • Garrett Jones – 0-for-5
  • Starling Marte – 2-for-11 with a triple, a home run and a walk
  • Russell Martin – 1-for-6
  • Andrew McCutchen – 1-for-13 with a double and four walks
  • Michael McKenry – 2-for-5 with a walk
  • Gaby Sanchez – 1-for-8 with three walks
  • Travis Snider – 1-for-2
  • Jose Tabata – 2-for-9 with two doubles and a walk
  • Neil Walker – 3-for-9 with a double and a walk

Francisco Liriano has pitched better than even the Pirates thought he would to this point of the season. Liriano has been extremely good with the only hiccup in five starts coming against the Detroit Tigers, an AL team, two starts ago. Liriano lost his last start because Mike Leake shutout the Pirates’ offense for six innings before turning the game over to the bullpen. Liriano allowed only one run on four hits with a walk and a season-high 11 strikeouts … the most strikeouts for Liriano in a single start since he punched out 15 Athletics last July 13.

Liriano has not been nearly as effective on the road this season as he’s been at PNC. Liriano is 2-1 in three home starts with a 0.96 ERA and a 0.91 WHIP but on the road not only are teams hitting over .300 against him (.318) but he is 1-1 in two starts with a 4.35 ERA and a 1.74 WHIP.

Francisco Liriano shut down the Cubs on May 22 in Pittsburgh. Liriano allowed just two hits and a walk with nine strikeouts over seven innings of shutout ball. Liriano is 1-1 in two career starts against the Cubs with a 2.84 ERA and a 0.79 WHIP. Today marks the first start of Liriano’s career at Wrigley Field.

Cubs Career Numbers against Francisco Liriano

  • Darwin Barney – 0-for-4 with a walk
  • Julio Borbon – 0-for-6
  • Welington Castillo – 1-for-3
  • Starlin Castro – 1-for-6 with a double
  • David DeJesus – 2-for-17 with a walk
  • Scott Hairston – 0-for-3
  • Dioner Navarro – 0-for-3
  • Cody Ransom – 2-for-6 with a walk
  • Anthony Rizzo – 0-for-3
  • Alfonso Soriano – 1-for-5 with a double and a walk
  • Ryan Sweeney – 0-for-4

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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Quote of the Day

"Look at everything as though you were seeing it either for the first or last time." - Betsy Smith

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    Barney – 2B
    Ransom – 3B
    Rizzo – 1B
    Soriano – LF
    Hairston – RF
    Castillo – C
    Castro – SS
    Sweeney – CF
    Wood – P

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    I’m adding to the previous report today’s selections

    Cubs selected CF Jacob Hannemann from Brigham Young in the 3rd round (75th overall)
    in the 2013 MLB Draft

    • Tony_Hall

      Reports are that he compares with Jacoby Ellsbury type of player….that would be nice, at least the pre-injury Ellsbury.

      • Ray Ray

        we’ll see. the cubs had a personal tryout with him. he is more like a Matt Szcur. A football kid who hasn’t played a lot of baseball. He was projected to go 5th round or later. I wish they would have taken the catcher Denney who went a couple of picks later to the Red Sox. Cubs need to add some catchers with upside to their system.

        • Tony_Hall

          Just like I say you can’t look at one prospect as the make or break, you can’t look at one draft pick and judge it. Last year, everyone was complaining about their picks starting in the 6th round (I believe) through the 10th round. But they were drafting college seniors who would say yes to $25K, $50K, and help them save money against the slot to spend elsewhere. I believe we are seeing them do it with draft spots already.

          Plus, you can’t go by projections, as that is assuming everyone will grab the best player, but signability still comes into play, which is why it is the 11th round before you will see teams drafting higher ranked players, who will require more money to sign, but the team can’t be sure they will sign. You have to sign your 1st 10 round picks to get your full allotment of dollars to sign the guys you really want…..you can thank Uncle Bud for this screwy system.

          • Ray Ray

            Theo developed a man crush on the kid and drafted him higher than projected. Some times it works out but a lot of times it ends of like Hayden Simpson. Here is a quote from the Provo local newspaper on what Theo said about Hannemman.

            General manager Theo Epstein, the architect of the championship Boston
            teams who now works for the Chicago Cubs, apparently marveled at
            Hannemann’s fluidness. He could look better going 0-for-5 than some
            players that go 5-for-5, Howard recounts Epstein saying.

          • Tony_Hall

            Keep in mind his slot value is $736,200, of which he won’t be offered but $300-$350k. He will sign, which is a must with the picks in these rounds especially but for all of the picks in Rounds 1-10.

            This was done to get a player they liked, and save money for Bryant and/or a guy they will take a chance on starting in Round 11.

            4th round pick slot is $477,300. Same thing they will save money here as well.

          • Brp921

            I believe you’re quoting from the article I spoke of above. I think with him Szezr (I give up on spelling his name) and Almora the Cubs are going to come up with a good fast major league center fielder and a good fast extra outfielder/pinch runner.

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

          Considering he went on his mission and started late I’m excited about him. Should have a good head on his shoulders.

          So far I feel they’ve really been adding some quality pieces.

        • Brp921

          I read an article that I will try to link later whet his father said they had a number in mind that was a late second round or early third slot and if it was close to that he would sign. The article said his 60 yard speed would get him a lot of triples because of his speed aroundthe bases.

          • Dorasaga

            Please do!

          • Brp921

            Here’s the link:)http://www.heraldextra.com/sports/college/byu/baseball/byu-s-hannemann-likely-to-get-drafted-high-in-baseball/article_50ac6e36-ceb5-11e2-95ee-001a4bcf887a.html

          • Dorasaga

            I like his dad, quite open about his expectation of professional offers ($), and not shying away from telling a reporter that the family has high demand of his son as well.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs have announced four Friday dates previously listed as TBD will now be at 3:05 p.m. CDT: July 5, July 12, Aug. 2 and Aug. 16.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected RHP Tyler Skulina from Kent State in the 4th
    round (108th overall) in the 2013 MLB Draft

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

      Big kid and the ace of a staff that made it to the CWS. I like the pick…

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

    I like the Hanneman and Skulina picks!

  • RynoTiger

    oh no..JD is talking about the moving track packing up his family’s belongings and finally making the move to Chicago…can someone use a GPS or satellite system to reroute the truck back to Houston?

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected RHP Trey Masek from Texas Tech in the 5th
    round (138th overall) of the 2013 MLB Draft

    • Ray Ray

      Now this was a good pick. He fell because he doesn’t have prototypical size. He is listed at 6’1 but he is 6′. Saw him pitch in college and he has really good stuff. He knows how to pitch.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Agreed on the good pick. Good to hear about his ability.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Castillo and Castro with back-to-back walks

    • Ray Ray

      Holy sh##. I guess it would take someone like Francisco Liriano for that to happen

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Well done

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected RHP Scott Frazier from Pepperdine University in the 6th round (168th overall)

  • Ray Ray

    Every single pick so far has been a college player.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Wood breaks up Liriano’s no hitter with one down in the fifth

    • calicub

      Wood batting a robust .308 after that single!

      Holy Cow!

      • RynoTiger

        I wonder if Wood would want to play 2B on his non-pitching days.

        • paulcatanese

          With his bat, anywhere he wants to:)

  • RynoTiger

    OMG I can’t believe JD got hired. He says the most obvious information and recap. There’s a lot of silence where I’m pretty sure he should be offering some insight and additional info about the situation or game. I think Len is just letting the silence happen now to see what JD does. So far it’s nothing!
    Bring back Todd H. He was so much better.

    • cc002600

      I’m not a huge fan of Len / JD.

      They are ok, but Len is just too boring for me.

      I like broadcasters who entertain as well as call the game, like Harry….he was the best

      I usually fall asleep listening to Len.

      • Dorasaga

        Agree. Len needs to be responsible to get the best out of JD. The broadcaster’s job is to keep us fans entertained, and there are many ways to do so. Vin Scully, Ernie Harwell, and of course, Harry Caray, they all do it their own way. Kasper is just not doing anything.

      • Tony_Hall

        I liked Stoney and Brenly, as well. I would like to say they have a better personality, but I think it is that they actually have one. Plus they would both would call it liked they saw it, and not hold back.

        • paulcatanese

          What a dream come true if they could be here.

    • paulcatanese

      Todd was very good, and anyone besides what they have now. The most entertaining bit of the broadcasts are the commercials, which can be
      on cue, each and every game.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected RHP David Garner from Michigan State in the
    7th round (198th overall)

  • Ray Ray

    Another college arm! Hopefully a couple will work out and move up fairly quickly, even if it ends up being for the bullpen. You can see the pattern. Theo is drafting power arms instead of more polished finesse stuff. All of these pitchers run it up there in the low to mid 90’s.

    • Brp921

      I like it!

    • John_CC

      I like the pile of college arms. This is a draft with a very clear mission. This is what “Team Theo” is best at. They had an obvious plan, well prepared and well executed.

      I now wonder if they had Bryant at the top of their board all along, and all these college pitchers singled out.

      • Tony_Hall

        They have said Appel was and Bryant was second. Could just be an easy thing to say as that is the order they were drafted. Plus, saying Bryant was #1, would only give Boras more leverage to get every last nickel. Either way, Bryant will sign, you don’t turn down the second pick spot.

        • J Daniel

          Boras doesn’t need leverage as he pretty much gets his way. I like that the boys are not fearful of it. In this case, the Cubs have the leverage! As a college senior what are the options?

    • paulcatanese

      It just may be that they are looking at the power arms for the back end of the starters, It’s what I would do, as the bullpen is bare, done , fini.
      But again who knows?

  • John_CC

    Unbelievable, once again the Cubs let Liriano go 7 innings!

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected
    LHP Sam Wilson from Lamar Community College in the 8th round (228th overall)

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 2-0 to Pirates on Friday – Travis Wood: 1R, 4H, 2BB, 6K, 6IP (103 pitches, 64 strikes); 1-2

    Cubs offense: 5H, 5BB. 0-5 RISP, 10 LOB

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected CF Charcer Burks from William B Travis HS in TX in the 9th
    round (258th overall), first HS player taken by Cubs in
    draft

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs selected RHP Zachary Godley from the University of
    Tennessee in the 10th round (288th overall)

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

    I’m watching OU vs. LSU and man does Gray look nasty. He’s definitely got the goods. Hitting triple digits with an easy delivery and a nasty slider. The announcers talking about how he gets better as a game goes on.

    However I’m very happy with Bryant. But Gray has got to be one of the better 3rd picks in a while.

  • Tony_Hall

    Let’s look at how fast some hitters have made it to the majors

    Ryan Braun drafted 2005

    2005
    Rookie 10 gms
    A – 37 gms

    2006
    A+ – 59 gms
    AA – 59 gms

    2007
    AAA – 34 gms
    Majors for good

    Bryce Harper

    Drafted 2010
    2010- NONE

    2011
    A – 72 gms
    AA – 37 gms

    2012
    AAA – 21 gms
    Majors

    I would expect Bryant to be about the same 2 years or less.

    Expected arrival at Wrigley…..May 2015, but Sept 2014 sounds better to me.

    • Brp921

      Hopefully along with a couple of our other top prospects.

    • CubbyBlue

      right now there are 5 pitchers from last year’s draft in the majors. gray was the pick. theo blew it. cubs have enought bats in the system; adding 1 more does’t help. and not when they so badly want to trade garza it appears who is under 30. (and prob for more injured pitching prospects to boot). college hitters have a big adjustment; wood bat. the ball is the same in college. good pitchers move quicker. gray is a 100 mph good pitcher.

      • Tony_Hall

        I was hoping for Appel, but all evidence shows that bats are a better bet at the top of the 1st round than arms. After the top of the draft, arms are the way to go. But there was no way, I could say they should have taken Gray over Bryant on draft night, and I don’t believe many teams would have either. At the top of the draft especially, you take the best player available, not from a need basis. You say this doesn’t help, that we have enough bats, yet the MLB team is doing quite well in the rotation and the bats is where we need help. I guess it just depends at which level you look as what is needed. That is why BPA is the way to go with pick #2.

        Please list out the 5 pitchers from last years draft and their stats for this year, so we can see if it is more than just a number of pitchers (quantity) or if they have been successful or not (quality).

        • Dorasaga

          I appreciate your logic. And I’ve heard enough GMs and Asst.GMs said that they draft the best available, not by farm system need.

      • Tony_Hall

        Also, there is ZERO chance Gray would be in the majors next year, if that is what you were implying. Appel, maybe, Gray is going to need a few years.

  • Tony_Hall

    We have some pretty high end, middle of the order bats now in our system.

    Hopefully joining Rizzo in the 3-6 spots in the order are Baez, Soler, and now Bryant. That would be a pretty nice 3-6 in the lineup. Now imagine a top of the order with the Double A boys of Ariscmendy Alcantara and Albert Almora and finishing the lineup with Castro and Castillo.

    1. Alcantara 2B
    2. Almora CF
    3. Bryant 3B
    4. Soler RF
    5. Rizzo 1B
    6. Baez LF
    7. Castro SS
    8. Castillo C

    I am sure we will never see this lineup actually in a game, as it is unlikely all these guys will make it, but it sure is fun to think about this.

    • paulcatanese

      You know Tony, I think Almora is the sneaker among these guys, and he may be the one who succeeds before the rest.

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