Game One Hundred Thirty-Three: Cubs (54-78) vs. Pirates (52-81)
Game Time – 11:35am C.T. Comcast Sports Net, WGN Radio, XM Radio Channel 183
Location – PNC Park, Pittsburgh
Juan Mateo (1-2, 3.38) vs. Victor Santos (5-9, 5.59)
Rookie Juan Mateo will look to end the month of August with a win, end the Cubs current 5-game losing streak and help avoid a sweep at the hands of the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pirates have simply out played the Cubs in the first 2 games of the series but the Cubs defense has not helped at all. Mateo has pitched better than his record indicates….the Cubs need a solid performance and a quality start out of the young right-hander. Mateo is 0-2 in his last 2 games and has given up just 5 earned runs in 12 innings (3.75 ERA). He has thrown strikes for the most part and worked around the 10 hits he surrendered to the Cardinals last Friday. Ryan Dempster has been horrible in the first 2 games of this series, he has given up 4 runs, 3 earned, on 6 hits and walked 2 in 1 1/3 innings of work (20.30 ERA). The Cubs need the win and Dempster needs to be successful in the 9th.
Victor Santos is 0-1 in 2 games this season against the Cubs with a 5.56 ERA. He gave up 6 runs on 10 hits in 4 1/3 on April 14 and gave up just 1 run on 5 hits in 7 innings of work on May 1st. Santos has given up a lot of hits, walks and home runs this season. He is 1-2 in his last 4 starts with a 6.98 ERA. In 19 1/3 innings he has given up 28 hits and 10 walks and pitched out of the bullpen during the month of July. The Cubs will have chances to score against Santos but they have not been able to take advantage of sub-par pitchers of late and it shows in their record.
This is the last game before the August 31st Trading Deadline. The Cubs have several players that should be unloaded to playoff teams. There are not a lot of rumors about moves in the mix but this could be the last game in Cubbie Blue for John Mabry (the L.A. Times reported on Wednesday morning that the Dodgers have talked to the Cubs about Mabry) and Phil Nevin and it should be the last game for Glendon Rusch….but we all can dream.
Let’s Talk Cubbies Baseball….