Game Ninety-Two: Cubs (55-36) vs. Reds (43-49)
Game Time – 1:20pm C.T.
Coverage – TV: WGN – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 189
Location – Wrigley Field, Chicago
Ted Lilly (9-5, 4.47/1.30) vs. Bronson Arroyo (6-7, 5.82/1.65)
Lou Piniella’s crew will attempt to sweep the 3-game series against the Reds today behind Ted Lilly. Geovany Soto should receive a day off with a day game after a night game. Soto has played in 83 of the Cubs’ first 91 games this season. Henry Blanco will likely start behind the plate and Hank White should receive more playing time in the second half of the season.
Ted Lilly must keep the ball in the yard today and give his offense time to score early and often against Bronson Arroyo.
In other news…. According to several reports, Rich Harden will make his Cub debut on Saturday against the Giants. Sean Marshall is likely the odd man out today when the Cubs will likely recall Micah Hoffpauir to replace Matt Murton on the active roster.
Alfonso Soriano has not taken batting practice since Saturday in St. Louis and will not participate in the upcoming All-Star game. Soriano will attend all of the festivities for the Midsummer Classic with the rest of his teammates. Soriano felt discomfort in his hand and a report on Cubs.com indicated his hand felt weak as well. The Cubs had targeted the first series following the break against the Astros as a possible return but it is looking like Soriano will not return until the series in Arizona that begins on July 21st.
Scott Eyre will begin a rehab stint with the Peoria Chiefs on Thursday and will pitch for Ryne Sandberg’s club again on Saturday. The Cubs will not activate Eyre from the DL until after the break. Ted Lilly has put together a good string of outings since leaving after only 3 innings against the Rockies on May 30th at Wrigley. Lilly has won his last 4 decisions and the Cubs are 5-1 in his last 6 starts. Lilly was the pitcher of record this past Saturday but after the Cardinals scored 3 runs in the 9th, he received a no decision.
Lilly gave up only 2 runs in 7 hits in 6 innings with 5 strikeouts and a walk to the Cardinals. The biggest key to Lilly’s success of late has been the fact he is keeping the ball in the park….and that must continue today if Lilly wants to win his 10th game of the year.
Lilly is 5-2 at Wrigley this season in 9 starts with a 4.92 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP.
‘The Bulldog‘ will face the Reds for the second time this season. Lilly lost to Cincinnati in the series finale on April 17th. Edinson Volquez beat the Cubs 9-2 and Lilly surrendered 5 runs on 6 hits in 6 innings with 3 walks and 6 strikeouts.
Lilly earned his first win as a Cub against the Reds last season, the only one of his career. Lilly is 1-2 in 6 career starts versus the Reds with a 4.09 ERA and a 0.91 WHIP.
- Bronson Arroyo – 1-for-2
- Adam Dunn – 2-for-7 with a home run
- Edwin Encarnacion – 2-for-12 with a double
- Ken Griffey, Jr. – 4-for-13
- Jerry Hairston, Jr. – 5-for-21 with 3 doubles and a home run
- Jeff Keppinger – 4-for-9
- Brandon Phillips – 0-for-13
- Joey Votto – 2-for-7 with a double and a home run
The Cubs will get their first look of the season at Bronson Arroyo today. Arroyo has dominated the Cubs in the past, and after a horrible start to the season, is pitching much better of late. Arroyo has won his last two starts after suffering a horrible defeat North of the border. The Blue Jays scored 10 runs on 11 hits in just a single inning against Arroyo on June 24th.
Arroyo beat the Nationals 3-0 in his last start and did not allow a run in 6 innings of work.
Arroyo was 4-0 in 5 starts against the Cubs in 2006 with a 1.01 ERA and a 0.84 WHIP, last season….0-3 in 5 starts with a 3.58 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP, the Cubs hit .280 against him.
Arroyo has a winning record on the road this year. In 10 starts, Arroyo has posted a 4-3 record with a 7.17 ERA and a 1.91 WHIP while opponents have hit him pretty well…. a .346 batting average against.
The Cubs will face Arroyo for the 16th time in his career. He is 4-6 in 13 starts versus the Cubs with a 3.13 ERA and a 1.12 WHIP.
- Henry Blanco – 1-for-12
- Ronny Cedeno – 3-for-15 with a double
- Mark DeRosa – 7-for-14 with a double and a home run
- Jim Edmonds – 6-for-24 with a home run
- Reed Johnson – 3-for-11
- Derrek Lee – 5-for-22 with 2 home runs
- Aramis Ramirez – 7-for-28 with a double and a home run
- Ryan Theriot – 4-for-15 with a double
- Daryle Ward – 3-for-13
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball….