Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Dodgers – 08/01/13

Game One Hundred Eight: Cubs (49-58) vs. Dodgers (57-49)

  • Game Time – 7:05pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 186/844
  • Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago

Chris Rusin (1-0, 2.93/0.98) vs. Ricky Nolasco (1-1, 3.13/1.35, 6-9, 3.72/1.24)

The Cubs open a four-game series tonight against Yasiel Puig and the high flying Los Angeles Dodgers. After a miserable start to the season, Don Mattingly has his team atop the NL West with a comfortable four game lead over the Diamondbacks. The Dodgers are 27-7 in their last 34 games and are showing no signs of slowing down.

Thanks to the schedule makers, the Cubs are already done with their season series against both the Diamondbacks and Giants before playing a single game against the Dodgers. The Cubs play the Dodgers seven times this month (three games in LA from August 26 – August 28) and will face a much different club than they saw a year ago. The Cubs were 2-4 in the six games with the Dodgers a year ago.

Carlos Marmol makes his return to Wrigley for the four-game series. Marmol was sent to the Dodgers after the Cubs designated him for assignment. Marmol has appeared in two games in a Dodgers’ uniform and has allowed four runs on six hits with two walks and one strikeout in 2 2/3 innings.

The front office will also get a first hand look at two players they tried to sign but were outbid by the Dodgers. The Cubs were believed to be in the final running for both Yasiel Puig and Hyun-Jin Ryu.

Dale Sveum’s team has played better ball against the west this season (12-12) and has already won as many games as they did a year ago (12-22). The Cubs must start playing better at Wrigley (23-29) and with that said, the next four days will be a big challenge for the Cubs.

Chris Rusin will make his first start at Wrigley of the season tonight, and will take the hill at Wrigley for only the third time. Rusin has pitched well but some feel he has been more lucky than good. After tonight’s matchup of Chris Rusin and Ricky Nolasco, Friday afternoon will be a duel between two very good southpaws when Travis Wood faces Hyun-Jin Ryu. Jeff Samardzija is scheduled to face Chris Capuano on Saturday with Carlos Villanueva wrapping up the series on Sunday afternoon against Zack Greinke. The Cubs will miss Clayton Kershaw this weekend.

Tonight it all starts with Chris Rusin

Chris Rusin is coming off an excellent start in San Francisco. Rusin tossed seven innings of shutout ball and allowed only three hits with two walks and three strikeouts. Rusin has been very good in his three big league appearances this season … but he has yet to face an offense like the one he’ll face tonight.

Rusin made only two starts at Wrigley last season and did not fare too well. Rusin has made a lot of improvements since last year and tonight will be an excellent test to see exactly how far he has come.

Chris Rusin did not face the Dodgers last season and makes his first regular season appearance against the Dodgers tonight. No one on Los Angeles’ active roster has faced Chris Rusin in a regular season game.

The Cubs will get another look at an old nemesis tonight. Ricky Nolasco has always stepped up his game when he faces the team that took him in the fourth round of the 2001 draft. Nolasco has already beaten the Cubs once this season and he will face the Cubs for the first time in a Dodgers’ uniform tonight.

Ricky Nolasco beat the Cubs back on April 28 in Miami. Nolasco held the Cubs to three run on four hits with two walks and two strikeouts in seven innings. For his career, Nolasco is 5-2 in nine games, eight starts, against the Cubs with a 2.98 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. Nolasco owns a career mark of 2-2 in four games, three starts, with a 2.45 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP.

Cubs Career Numbers against Ricky Nolasco

  • Darwin Barney – 1-for-11 with a triple
  • Julio Borbon – 0-for-2 with a walk
  • Starlin Castro – 6-for-15 with a double
  • David DeJesus – 1-for-6 with three walks
  • Dioner Navarro – 7-for-13 with two doubles and a home run
  • Anthony Rizzo – 1-for-2 with a double and a walk
  • Nate Schierholtz – 4-for-15 with a home run
  • Luis Valbuena – 0-for-3

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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Quote of the Day

"Our lives improve only when we take chances and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves." - W Anderson.
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  • Sonate

    Interesting analysis on Rusin. During Rusin’s SF start the SF color-man stated that Rusin “pitches backwards…in that he throws soft stuff to set up his 88 MPH fastball.” Maybe that’s one of the lessons he’s learned. Alternatively, maybe he got lucky. I am looking forward to this game.

    • Rational Logic

      For whatever reason, players are stereotyped so easily. I’m not saying Rusin doesn’t do that, but I doubt it’s really his game.

      All lefty’s seem to be “crafty” and if a lefty is a soft tosser (FB<90mph) he pitches backwards. If it's a righty who is a soft tosser he "makes his living on the black and relies on a two-seamer." Just like all small players are 'scrappy', etc

      Just a curious thing I've noticed over the years – how quickly media labels a player's style based on his makeup and appearance.

      Then there's Aroldis Chapman.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    DeJesus – CF
    Lake – LF
    Rizzo – 1B
    Navarro – C
    Schierholtz – RF
    Castro – SS
    Valbuena – 3B
    Barney – 2B
    Rusin – P

  • Ripsnorter1

    I guess no DeJesus trade guarantees that Mr. DeJesus will be on the Chicago Cubs for 2014.

    • Tony_Hall

      How do you figure?

      May not pick up his option….not likely or could still be traded.

      • Ripsnorter1

        I think they’ll pick up his option.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          Agreed, they will pick up the option.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Lake with a HUGE fly … onto Waveland

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rizzo with #16 … Lake and Rizzo go back-to-back on consecutive pitches

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs have hit 70 homers at Wrigley this season, most by a NL team in their home park

    • JasonOfTheBurbs

      surprising a bit since they haven’t really had a ton of mashers on paper so far this year.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Lake with another HR

  • Tony_Hall

    Puig who????

  • Ripsnorter1

    Now that the Cubs have signed Eloy Jimenez, where do you think they will start him off?
    Boise? Kane County?

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      A lot lower, think Dominican Summer League … he is only 16 years old. He won;t be in the states for a while.

      • Ripsnorter1

        He’s a $2.8 million dollar 16 year old.

        • Suzy S

          that supposedly left another offer of $5 million on the table to sign with the Cubs…hmmmm.

        • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

          You are correct. As Suzy pointed out, another team was willing to give him $5 million. You asked where he would start, he’s not starting in either of those two place.

          • Ripsnorter1

            Thank you.

          • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

            You’re welcome. Did you check out Baez’s last ten games? He’s reached base safely in all ten.

  • Ripsnorter1

    Baez…hitting .221 in AA Tennesse…slugging .600.

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      Look at his last ten games.

    • SomeGuy27

      He started his AA stint 1 for 22 (a Homerun). Since then he is 20 for 73 (.274) with 10 HR 20 RBI slugging .726

  • Suzy S

    Junior Lake is making it hard for the Cubs to consider sending him down.

    • J Daniel

      Suzy,
      You and I debated this when they first called him up and your assessment was good … I think I am getting my wish … Can’t send him down … As you stated it would have been a good learning opportunity for him

      • Suzy S

        J Daniel,
        Yes, it was a good debate…I’d love to see Junior prove the “experts” wrong.
        I’m rooting for him.

        • J Daniel

          Yes, you were wanting him to stay up as well but looking at it more realistically. I just was hoping he would play so well they couldn’t send him back

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Bitter alert … Sure wish Jerry Hairston would have hit the same way he has against the Cubs when he was with the Cubs.

    • J Daniel

      Great post

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Excellent throw by DeJesus

  • GaryLeeT

    Bowden stunk last year, and he stinks this year. How manys years of his stink, do we have to stomach?

    • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

      I wouldn’t think much longer. Lim is getting close and if they don’t move Gregg they will need a spot. Would not be surprised if Cabrera is called up soon.

    • J Daniel

      He “stinks”

  • Denver Mike

    Sanchez needs to lose that glove

  • Denver Mike

    The Cubs need to lose Belushi’s phone number

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rizzo with another HR

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    What a catch by Lake … he’s going to feel that one tomorrow, and Saturday.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs lost 6-4 to Dodgers on Thursday night – Chris Rusin:
    4R, 7H, 3BB, 4K in 5+ IP (94 pitches, 55 strikes)

    Anthony Rizzo: 2-3, 2 HR,
    BB; Junior Lake: 2-4, 2 HR; Darwin Barney: 1-4

    • Dorasaga

      They deserved the loss. They didn’t give up, but the talent difference between these two teams is too huge to make up.