Spring Training Game Thirty-Two: Cubs (17-13) vs. Rockies (11-15-1)
Game Time – 3:10pm C.T.
Coverage – TV: MLB.TV – Radio: WGN Radio, XM Channel 177
Location – Hi Corbett Field, Tucson
Ryan Dempster (2-2, 1.56/1.04) vs. Ubaldo Jimenez (1-0, 6.32/1.28)
Countdown to Opening Day…9 days. Ryan Dempster and a majority of the backups and minor leaguers will make the final two-hour trip of the spring to Tucson. The Cubs have Dempster penciled in to make one more start after today in the Cactus League before his 2009 debut in the second game of the season in Houston.
Lou Piniella repeated on Friday that he would announce on Sunday who will be the team’s closer when the season begins. The battle between Carlos Marmol and Kevin Gregg will soon be over…at least for a week or two.
Carlos Marmol was scheduled to face the White Sox on Friday for the second game of back-to-back days. Instead of pitching at HoHoKam, Marmol threw in a minor league game, along with Neal Cotts and Aaron Heilman, according to the Tribune. Ryan Dempster has really turned it up in his last few spring starts. After beginning the spring 0-2, Dempster has evened his record and was on the winning end of the 20-2 rout of the A’s last Monday.
Dempster struggled with his command but allowed only one run on three hits with a walk and six strikeouts in 4 1/3 innings.
In his first five games, four starts, Ryan Dempster has allowed six runs, three earned, on 14 hits with four walks and 15 strikeouts in 17 1/3 innings.
Ubaldo Jimenez was lights out in the WBC with Team Dominican Republic. He set a WBC record by striking out 10 batters on the night Team Netherlands eliminated the favorite of the tournament.
Jimenez has struggled in Arizona and will make his third start of the spring today. In four games, two starts, he has allowed 11 runs, all earned, on 13 hits with seven walks and 11 strikeouts. Jimenez has allowed two home runs and hit a pair of batters.
Ubaldo Jimenez made his first career big league start against the Cubs on the final day of the 2006 season.
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