Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Brewers – 09/18/13

Game One Hundred Fifty-Two: Cubs (63-88) vs. Brewers (67-83)

  • Game Time – 7:10pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 188/844
  • Location – Miller Park, Milwaukee

Chris Rusin (2-4, 2.85/1.28/4.27) vs. Tyler Thornburg (2-1, 2.18/1.25/3.40)

After starting the 11-game road trip by winning three of the first five games, the Cubs have lost four in a row and are stumbling toward the end of the season. The Cubs begin play tonight a season-low 25 games under .500 as their season-long struggles with their division rivals have continued.

Dale Sveum’s team is 5-12 versus a not-very-good Brewers team and is just 23-45 against the NL Central this season. The Cubs played their National League leading 52nd one-run game on Tuesday. The Cubs are 20-32 in games decided by a single tally this season and are 34-48 in games decided by two runs or less.

The Cubs will hand the ball to Chris Rusin to end their four-game losing streak and pick up a rare victory against the Brewers. Dale Sveum should resist the urge to load his lineup with as many lefties as he can tonight and should run out his right handed starting eight. Tyler Thornburg has issues getting right handers (.269/.355/.297) out but handles lefties (.192/.286/.179) extremely well.

Dave Eanet will be back in the booth with Keith Moreland and Judd Sirott tonight. Pat Hughes will return on WGN for the series opener against the Braves on Friday afternoon.

Tonight all begins with Chris Rusin

Chris Rusin is coming off one of his best starts at the big league level. Rusin held a Pirates’ lineup that performs very well against southpaws to two runs on four hits in seven innings. Rusin had very good command, pitched ahead in the count and gave his team a chance to win the game. Too bad the offense gave him no support.

Rusin completed seven innings of work his last time out, which matched a season-high in innings pitched. Like so many of his teammates, Rusin has been a lot better on the road this season (2-1 in six starts with a 1.82 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP) than at Wrigley (0-3 in five starts with a 4.26 ERA and a 1.66 WHIP). Teams are hitting just .203 against Rusin on the road while managing better than a .300 average against him at Wrigley (.307).

Chris Rusin makes his second start of the year against the Brewers. Rusin contributed more with his bat than on the mound when he faced the Brewers at Wrigley. Rusin lasted just 3 2/3 innings and gave up two runs on seven hits but ran up his pitch count before he could qualify for the win. Rusin is 0-1 in two starts in his career versus Milwaukee with a 3.12 ERA and a 1.38 WHIP.

Brewers Career Numbers against Chris Rusin

  • Norichika Aoki – 1-for-4
  • Jean Segura – 1-for-4 with a walk
  • Carlos Gomez – 0-for-3 with a walk
  • Jonathan Lucroy – 0-for-3 with a walk
  • Aramis Ramirez – 2-for-3 with a home run
  • Jeff Bianchi – 1-for-2
  • Sean Halton – 1-for-2
  • Logan Schafer – 1-for-2

Tyler Thornburg makes his second start of the season against the Cubs tonight. Like the rest of his rotation mates, Thornburg had his way with the Cubs and he’s coming off a good outing against the Cardinals. Thornburg limited the Redbirds to two runs on three hits with two walks and six strikeouts in six innings. Thornburg and the Brewers topped the Cards 5-3. Thornburg is 1-1 in his last two starts with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP.

Thornburg has not fared too well at Miller Park and hopefully that trend will continue tonight. Thornburg is 1-1 in eight games, one start, with a 4.09 ERA and a 1.59 WHIP at Miller Park this season.

Tyler Thornburg faces the Cubs for the second time in his young career tonight.

Cubs Career Numbers against Tyler Thornburg

  • Starlin Castro (.287) – 0-for-3
  • Junior Lake (.385) – 1-for-3
  • Dioner Navarro (.304) – 2-for-3
  • Anthony Rizzo (.251) – 0-for-3
  • Luis Valbuena (.238) – 0-for-3

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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Quote of the Day

"Every day is a new opportunity. You can build on yesterday’s success or put its failures behind and start over again." – Bob Feller

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  • Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Castro SS
    Valbuena 3B
    Rizzo 1B
    Navarro C
    Schierholtz RF
    Sweeney CF
    Bogusevic LF
    Barney 2B
    Rusin P

  • Neil

    Sveum says understands evaluation process Theo Epstein is using regarding the manager’s job.

    Sveum returning in 2014? “I would hope to think so, but I’ve been around the game long enough to understand how the whole process works.”

    Sveum on season: “Some things haven’t gone too well, and some things have gone really well”

    Above are tweets from Carrie Muskat and Patrick Mooney

    • SirGladiator

      Don’t forget the other quote “The things that have gone really well are that my bosses don’t seem to mind the things that haven’t gone too well”. Granted he didn’t say that out loud, but it’s clearly what he was thinking :) .

  • Neil

    Donnie Murphy is day to day with sore left wrist.

  • Neil

    Sveum: “That’s up to them and they’re the bosses. They make those decisions and they have all kinds of things to evaluate.”

  • Neil

    The Ump Show is already on in Milwaukee.

  • Sonate

    Pitch FX showed that TWO of the three strikes called against Castro were BALLS! Not a good omen.

    • TheWrongGuy

      Yeah been a trend this season. Bad umpiring on balls and strikes.

      • Neil

        It really has.

    • Neil

      Pitch FX is correct, they were not strikes.

  • Neil

    Rusin is nowhere near his spots right now

  • Neil

    Cubs have not gotten one call … and now a grand slam

  • TheWrongGuy

    CUBS hitters have ALL expanded their strike zone.

  • coachdon

    Has Junior Lake already worn out his welcome with Sveum? Hasn’t played much lately and been removed early a couple times when he did start. But Schierholtz plays virtually every game even though you pretty much know what he can do. And what he does is not that impressive.

  • GaryLeeT

    As if your eyes haven’t already told you this but, including tonight’s shutout, the Cubs have averaged 1.5 runs per game over their last eight.

    • Neil

      It’s been bad … and loading the lineup with lefties tonight does not help.

    • cubtex

      Tough to score when your #3 hitter is 5-36 on the road trip.

      • TheWrongGuy

        Not to mention no real threat bat in the line-up either.

        • cubtex

          It will be same next year unless Theo adds a middle order bat this offseason.

          • TheWrongGuy

            Agree’d. We both know it wont happen unless they make a trade. FA signings probably is not happening.

          • cubtex

            I just don’t understand how they can even consider going into next year with Rizzo penciled in as the 3 hitter again. It is a disaster.

          • TheWrongGuy

            Did you see my post about Rizzo in other thread?
            I think Rowson needs to go.

  • CubbyDenCritic

    If you don’t want to watch this Garbage, you can tune into…..
    CBS – Big Brother…..Sounds like how Theo is looking over Dale’s shoulder every day.
    NBC – America’s Got Talent…….Something the Cubs don’t have this year
    ABC – Modern Family……..Something the Rickett’s wish they could be.
    WGN – Supernatural……..Must be a show about Cubs Future star, Javier Baez
    FOX – The X Factor……..Show must be about Logan Watkins.

  • Neil

    Hey, two runners on base at the same time.

    • TheWrongGuy

      And of course we get nothing…

  • Neil

    Cubs lost 7-0 to the Brewers on Wednesday night – Chris Rusin: 6R, 4H (2 HR), 2BB, 3K, 4IP (65 pitches, 41 strikes)

    Ryan Sweeney: 2-4, 2B; Nate Schierholtz: 2-4; Cubs 0R, 4H, 4BB, shut out for 14th time this season

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