Talkin’ Cubs Live – Cubs vs. Pirates – 06/10/14

Game Sixty-Two – Cubs (25-36) vs. Pirates (30-33)

  • Game Time – 6:05pm CDT
  • Coverage – TV: Comcast SportsNet – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channels 185, 844
  • Location – PNC Park, Pittsburgh

Travis Wood (5-5, 5.04/1.41/3.97) vs. Francisco Liriano (1-6, 4.54/1.47/3.93)

Weather permitting … The Cubs will try to end their two-game losing skid tonight behind Travis Wood. The Cubs struggles outside of Wrigley Field continued Monday night and the offense will have to figure out Francisco Liriano. The Cubs have been too aggressive at the plate when they’ve faced the Pirates this year. To put it simply, the entire offense is giving the Pirates pitching staff too much credit.

The Pirates have called up their top prospect and Gregory Polanco will make his big league debut tonight. Polanco is taking Neil Walker’s spot on the Pirates’ active roster. Neil Walker was placed on the DL after undergoing an appendectomy Monday night.

The Cubs will have to deal with the electric atmosphere at PNC Park and wonder what it will be like when Kris Bryant and Javier Baez make their big league debuts at Wrigley Field.

Rick Renteria should run out a balanced lineup tonight and not just play his right-handed lineup. Granted it is a small sample size, but lefties have hit .309/.367/.433 in 60 at bats against Liriano this season while right handers have managed a .231/.329/.312 line in 250 at bats.

With Renteria only using Carlos Villanueva on Monday, his entire bullpen was able to get a breather and everyone, but Villanueva, should be available tonight.

And tonight all starts with Travis Wood

Travis Wood had a rough outing for the second start in a row his last time out against the Mets. Wood pitched into the sixth inning while struggling with his command. Wood walked more batters than he struck out for the second time this season and Rick Renteria had to summon Brian Schlitter from the bullpen to record all three outs in the sixth inning. Travis Wood was charged with two runs on four hits with five walks and three strikeouts in five innings.

Like many of his teammates, the road has not been kind to Travis Wood this year. Wood is 2-4 in six starts outside of Wrigley Field with an 8.04 ERA and a 1.85 WHIP. Teams are hitting .326 against Wood in their home park. Wood faces the Pirates for the second time this season.

Travis Wood received a no decision in his against the Bucs at Wrigley on April 10. Wood gave up one run on four hits with three walks and nine strikeouts in six innings. For his career, Wood is 4-5 in 11 appearances, 10 starts, with a 3.15 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP … at PNC Park, 4-1 in six games, five starts, with a 1.91 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP.

Pirates Career Numbers against Travis Wood

Francisco Liriano has not been the 2013 version of himself for the Pirates this season and he’s coming off a loss to the Padres in which he gave up three runs, two earned, on one hit. Liriano walked six batters in five innings while striking out seven. But he gave up three runs, two earned, on one hits. Liriano has struggled with his command this season and if the Cubs are willing to be patient, he can be beaten.

Liriano has given up a lot of runs at PNC Park. In seven starts (0-3 record), Liriano has surrendered 27 runs, 25 earned, on 44 this with 20 walks and 35 strikeouts in 37 2/3 innings. Liriano will face the Cubs for the second time this season and he’s owned the Cubs since he put a Pirates uniform on.

The Cubs managed four hits and no runs with three walks and 10 strikeouts when they faced Liriano back on Opening Day. Francisco Liriano was 3-1 in five starts versus the Cubs last season with a 2.12 ERA and a 1.00 WHIP. In 34 innings, Liriano limited the Cubs to eight runs on 19 hits with 15 walks and 36 strikeouts.

Cubs Career Numbers against Francisco Liriano

Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …

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  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Tonight’s lineup:

    Bonifacio CF
    Lake LF
    Rizzo 1B
    Castro SS
    Ruggiano RF
    Olt 3B
    Barney 2B
    Whiteside C
    Wood P

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  • GaryLeeT

    Polanco debut eh? So is it wrong for me to hope only the Cubs’ overhyped prospects succeed, and everybody else’s falls flat on their face?

    • BosephHeyden

      Nope, that makes you a good fan.

  • BigJonLilJon

    Here’s hoping we get a win!!!!

  • BigJonLilJon

    My son says “hi”

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rizzo with a 2-run shot

  • Tony_H

    Rizzo seems to hit lefties pretty good.

    • BigJonLilJon

      And last year the knock against him was he couldn’t hit lefties. What a year makes!!

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

        He turned his weaknesses into strengths. To me that is the sign of a special ballplayer.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    A standing ‘o’ for Polanco

    • Tony_H

      Batting 2nd in his major league debut against a LH!

  • GaryLeeT

    That’s probably the first 1 inning crooked number the Cubs have ever put up against Liriano in 1 1/2 years. He’s really had their number.

  • GaryLeeT

    I found myself rooting for Whiteside to make an out so Wood could lead off the inning.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Polanco with his first hit …

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Liriano out, looks like an ankle

  • RynoTiger

    Unfortunately when he’s not hitting HRs, Olt is of little use offensively…at least at this point. I don’t think trying to work through it at the majors is going to work for him. He needs consistent work in the minors.

  • RynoTiger

    Unfortunately when he’s not hitting HRs, Olt is of little use offensively…at least at this point. I don’t think trying to work through it at the majors is going to work for him. He needs consistent work in the minors.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Wood with an excellent defensive play

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    What a play by Olt, almost nailed McCutchen at first

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Luis with a two-run double

    • Bredstik

      Wow, he crushed that. First pitch swinging pinch hitting for Olt.

      • Tony_H

        When you have a reputation for working counts you will get some pretty good 1st pitch’s to swing at from time to time.

        • Bredstik

          No question. Credit to Valbuena. He’s put together a real nice season for himself thus far, even while losing his starting job to Olt for a stretch.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Barney deked Marte …

    • Bredstik

      Second bad base running play of the game by Marte.

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        He has a habit of making those

        • Tony_H

          I would take an OF where he is my 3rd best OF and all are 27 and younger.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Rizzo with a RBI double … with a little help from Polanco

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Solid outing by Travis Wood

    • GaryLeeT

      Solid? Isn’t that like describing a girl as having a great personality?

      • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

        Well done sir, well done.

  • Patrick_Schaefer

    Valbuena is having a good season, he is under team control through 2016. He could be a valuable trade piece or if we brought up Bryant at 3b. And Valbuena stayed at 2b til Baez comes up that would be good too.

    • Ripsnorter1

      This is his career year. SELL HIGH.

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Strop did not let Castro’s error get to him. And Valbuena started the 5-4-3 DP

  • http://chicagocubsonline.com/ Neil

    Cubs beat the Pirates 7-3 on Tuesday night … Travis Wood: 3R, 9H, 2BB, 2K, 6.2 IP (102 pitches, 65 strikes)

    Rizzo: 3-4, HR, 2 2B, 3RBI, 3R; Valbuena: 2-2, 2B, 2RBI; Castro:
    1-3, RBI, BB, R; Barney: 1-4, 2B, RBI

  • GaryLeeT

    So Mr. Palanco, not quite the Castro type debut, was it? But he didn’t embarrass himself in front of the home crowd either.