Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Athletics – 07/04/13

Game Eighty-Three: Cubs (36-46) vs. Athletics (49-36)

  • Game Time – 3:05pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: WGN TV – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 180/844
  • Location – Coliseum, Oakland

Travis Wood (5-6, 2.85/1.00) vs. Dan Straily (4-2, 5.00/1.22)

Happy 4th of July from the CCO!

The Cubs wrap up the nine-game road trip with the last of three in Oakland. The Cubs are 5-3 over the first eight games of the trip and with a win today behind Travis Wood, the Cubs would post their fourth straight series victory and get within single digits of .500.

Today also ends a stretch of 16 of 19 games away from Wrigley Field. The Cubs open a nine-game homestand on Friday against the Bucs that includes a trip to the South Side on Monday for a makeup against the Sox.

The Cubs have been playing better ball of late and are scoring runs. Alfonso Soriano has gotten hot since back-to-back off days in Milwaukee. Soriano went 1-for-4 with a RBI on Wednesday and is 9-for-22 with three doubles, three home runs and nine RBI over his last five games.

Travis Wood was scheduled to face Jarrod Parker this afternoon in the battle of quality outing starters. But the A’s had to push Parker back to Saturday due to tightness in his right hamstring and called up Dan Straily to face the Cubs this afternoon.

Today it all starts with Travis Wood

Travis Wood is coming off another quality start and his second straight no decision thanks to the bullpen. Wood held the Mariners to two runs on three hits with three walks and six strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings. Wood turned the game over to the pen with a two-run lead but the outfielders misplayed two balls, the pen gave up the lead and the Cubs lost the game in 10 innings.

Wood had a very good month. While many will focus on the fact he has not won a game since May, Wood more than did his job and put his team into position to win each game. Wood is 0-3 in his last five starts with a 3.06 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP. Wood held teams to a .195 average while allowing less hits (23) than innings pitched (32 1/3) with a better than 3:1 strikeout to walk ratio (25 strikeouts, eight walks).

Travis Wood has made 16 starts this season and in 15 of those outings, Wood has not allowed more than three earned runs while complete at least six innings … for those scoring at home, that is 15 quality starts in 16 tries.

Travis Wood is 2-2 in six starts outside of Wrigley Field this season with a 3.38 ERA and a 0.96 WHIP, and he will make his first start against the Athletics this afternoon.

Jed Lowrie (1-for-10 with a double and two walks), Seth Smith (0-for-1) and Chris Young (3-for-9 with a double) are the only three players on Oakland’s active roster that have faced Travis Wood in a regular season game.

Dan Straily was optioned down to Triple-A following his start against the Mariners on June 22. Straily was recalled from Sacramento to take the spot of the injured Jarrod Parker. Straily lasted just 3 1/3 innings and gave up two runs on six hits in Seattle with three walks and five strikeouts. Straily was 1-0 in five starts in June prior to the demotion with a 4.88 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP. Straily is 2-1 in five home starts this season with a 4.55 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP.

Dan Straily makes his first career appearance against the Cubs this afternoon … and no one on the Cubs’ roster has faced Straily outside of the Cactus League.

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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Quote of the Day

"If a baseball could talk, it would sound like Ron Santo." – Pat Hughes - Remembering Ron Santo #10 (1940-2010)

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  • Neil

    Carlos Marmol has cleared waivers and will accept
    minor-league assignment. Dodgers hope to fix his mechanics.

    • SomeGuy27

      Speaking of Marmol, it occurred to me today that very quietly and very suddenly, we have a much better bullpen.

      When the season started, we had Marmol, Fujikawa, Russell, Rondon, Bowden, Camp, & Takahashi. Today we have Russell, Rondon, Gregg, Rodriquez, Strop, Parker, & Gueirrer.

      Russell (age 27): We know he is a LOOGY as his struggles have been when he’s been asked to go deep into a line up. Reminds me a bit of Paul Assenmacher who only had two seasons where he had more innings than appearances.

      Rondon (26): A rule 5 guy who became a rule 5 guy due to injuries sidetracking him in the minors. I think he has ability to stick but he will have hiccups as this will be the longest season of his career.

      Gueirrer (34): Has a track record and needed a change of scenery. I think he can be a stabilizer the rest of the way.

      Rodriquez (26): Pure power arm that needs to be harnessed. Even with the inconsistency, I‘d rather have that type of guy than not.

      Strop (29): Same as Rodriquez above.

      Parker (29): A little like Rondon regarding injuries but has developed a potential plus splitter this year which may get him into the closer’s role once Gregg is moved.

      Gregg (34): Has been very steady and is the guy we thought we were getting in ’09 which proves how consistently inconsistent a reliever’s career (even quality ones) can be. He’ll still be flipped for younger talent.

      Do these changes mean a play-off spot? No.
      But I think we won’t see so many blown ballgames. Of course after Garza and a couple other guys get moved, they may not have the late leads to blow.

      • GaryLeeT

        Sorry to disagree, but after Gregg leaves, the pen will be horrifyingly bad.

  • Neil

    Today’s lineup:

    Valbeuna 3B
    Castro SS
    Schierholtz RF
    Soriano LF
    Rizzo 1B
    Navarro DH
    Bogusevic CF
    Barney 2B
    Castillo C

    Wood P

    • paulcatanese

      Looking over the lineup from yesterday Neil, I have tried to see where the long ball power is.
      Valbeuna, yes, spotty, but he can hit the long ball. Castro, he seems to have lost the power swing to a great degree, Schierhotlz, very spotty, Soriano, yes, has the ability at any time.
      Rizzo, extremely spotty, hasn’t had a hit in the whole series, really struggling now. Navarro, yes, more from the left side, but can deliver.
      Bogusevic, don’t know, but can deliver with base hits, but needs power. Barney, very sporadic in that regard, and finally Castillo,
      again, the long ball is sporadic.
      Point being, in that game yesterday, since stringing hits to provide runs was not there,
      and when they have only three hitters that can supply the long ball, it was a predictable loss. And even if walks were in the equation
      it didn’t have a chance, and all the shutout pitching in the world didn’t either.

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  • Neil

    Borbon replaced Bogusevic in center. No word yet

    • 368

      Part of a package deal?

      • Neil

        Left hamstring tightness

  • Ray Ray

    Castro looked like he slowed down before reaching home plate.

    • RynoTiger

      the more I watch Castro run, I would describe his running style as deceptively slow…it looks like he should have some speed, but no..he has average speed at best..and he needs some work on his sliding skills

    • paulcatanese

      I would suggest a slight hamstring problem there. Notice how every time walking back to the dugout after an out or whatever, he just shuffles along, instead of at least trotting.
      And Soriono came thru again, but so did Cespedes arm, I never thought they would get Castro, but they did, by a large margin.

      • Sonate

        Thanks Paul. I thought Castro was not hustling.

    • paulcatanese

      Ray, thought I would mention Campana was on base today 4 out of 6 times with 3 hits and 1 stolen base, and one caught stealing. Two hits were of the outfield variety and one was a ground ball to the shortstop, the other on base was when the second baseman tried to rush on a ground ball. And two K’s. Hit leadoff again but was pulled for a pinch hitter in the 12th inning.

  • Neil

    18th-round Draft pick IF Giuseppe Papaccio joins Kane County

    • Tom U

      Infielder Brad Zapenas was also promoted from Kane Co, to tennessee.

    • paulcatanese

      Pasta- fazool !!!

    • J Daniel

      Kind of quick?

  • Krikas

    Been a while since I posted…but boy have to take a minute to give a tip of the cap to Travis Wood. What a first half…he has far exceeded any realistic expectations I had for him going into the season. Fun to watch.

    • Neil

      Good to hear from you and I agree.

      • Krikas

        Thanks Neil…and my continued gratification to you, the years go by, and you have never slowed down. Impressive.

  • Neil

    Another good outing for Travis Wood

    • GaryLeeT

      Come on Neil, he deserves a better adjective than that. How about a Star Spangled Spectacular outing?

      • Neil

        Good call … made an edit

  • GaryLeeT

    Someone needs to send a memo to the Cub’s hitters,and let them know that they should be hitting Straily hard the 3rd time through the order, like the rest of the League does.

  • Neil

    What a throw by Castillo to nail Young at second base

  • Neil

    And a passed ball allows the A’s to take a 1-0 lead

    • paulcatanese

      Agree, he could have come up with that, but on replay, it did hit the dirt first, still he should have come up with it.

  • GaryLeeT

    At least now that Marmol, and Camp are gone we don’t have to stomach through………….never mind.

  • BosephHeyden

    At least Wood won’t get the loss.

  • Sonate

    What was the issue with Lowrie. I thought he was out before. (Do they count twice?)

    • BosephHeyden

      The umpire called time in mid-delivery.

      • paulcatanese

        They finally got the out, but three or four pitches later, what do they call that “cheaters proof”?

  • BosephHeyden

    Castillo looked awkward on that strike three, and looked like he held his back after the swing.

    • RynoTiger

      yes I believe it’s called “Crap, I haven’t done anything with the bat so far this season on a consistent basis.”

    • paulcatanese

      Right, he did grab his back. But they are still climbing the ladder on him. He really needs to address that, they are the toughest pitches to hit.

  • Neil

    Cubs shut out 1-0 by Athletics on Thursday afternoon – Travis Wood: 0R, 3H, 1BB, 5K,6IP (101
    pitches, 66 strikes)

    Cubs offense: 0R, 2H, 3BB

  • Sonate

    I did not watch the whole game. So although I can’t say the Home Plate Ump was biased, I CAN say he was incompetent (based on pitch F/X).

    • Neil

      I concur …

  • paulcatanese

    Another good game for Wood.
    They really shut the offense down, but I noticed the only power threat they had out there today was Soriono, and he can’t do it by himself.
    Even his base hit to left was hit too hard giving Cespedes a chance to throw out Castro, that should have been a no brainer run, either Castro just didn’t hustle or he is nursing a sore hamstring.
    Still that would have left the game in a tie as it worked out.
    Good effort by a next to last team against a first place team, and they could , could , have swept the series with any luck. So I would say they played better than it looked on paper.
    Another little improvement.

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