Game Eighty-Eight: Cubs (38-49) vs. Dodgers (48-38)
Game Time – 3:10pm CDT
Coverage – TV: FOX Saturday Baseball – Radio: 720 WGN, XM Radio Channel 183
Location – Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles
Tom Gorzelanny (3-5, 3.31/1.43) vs. John Ely (4-6, 4.07/1.25)
Can Lou Piniella’s crew get back in the win column this afternoon? After sweeping the series against the D’Backs in Arizona, the Cubs have dropped the first two with the Dodgers. Game one because of the offense … game two due to poor pitching and defense.
When the series began on Thursday, the Cubs looked like they could reach the 40-win plateau before the break, now it will take a mini-two game winning streak to accomplish the task.
Alfonso Soriano, Starlin Castro and Geovany Soto are expected back in the starting lineup this afternoon. Reportedly all three were just given Friday night off and will be back in Lou’s starting nine this afternoon … Soriano was used a pinch-hitter in Friday’s loss.
Derrek Lee said Friday that he will not ask for a trade to a contender.
Carlos Silva’s calf is still bothering him and his last start of the first half is in question. Silva was slated to face the Dodgers in the finale Sunday night but the Cubs might have to make a roster move if Silva cannot pitch. Reports prior to Friday’s game indicated Mitch Atkins could get the ball instead … but Atkins took over for Lilly in the fourth and would not be able to make the spot start.
This afternoon it all starts with Tom Gorzelanny … Tom Gorzelanny is coming off his third win of the season. Gorzelanny started the Cubs’ seven-game road trip with a victory over the D’Backs, but it was anything but a good start for Gorzelanny.
The Cubs’ other southpaw walked a season-high six batters, struck out four and gave up three runs on five hits. Gorzelanny threw only five innings for the second time since returning to the rotation. With Carlos Silva’s start on Sunday night in jeopardy, Lou Piniella will need a long, successful outing from Gorzelanny this afternoon.
Gorzelanny took the loss against the Dodgers back on May 26 at Wrigley. Gorzelanny lasted just five innings and gave up seven runs, five earned, on seven hits.
Gorzelanny has struggled in his career during the Dodgers, despite the 1-1 record. Gorzelanny will make his fifth career start, sixth appearance, against the Dodgers and he has allowed 18 runs, 16 earned, on 26 hits with nine walks and 17 strikeouts in 23 2/3 innings (6.08 ERA and a 1.48 WHIP). At Dodger Stadium, Gorzelanny is 1-0 in three games, two starts, with a 6.00 ERA and a 1.33 WHIP.
Dodgers Career Numbers against Tom Gorzelanny
- Garrett Anderson – 1-for-2
- Ronnie Belliard – 1-for-8 with a home run and a walk
- Casey Blake – 1-for-5 with a double
- Jamey Carroll – 0-for-4
- Blake DeWitt – 1-for-2 with a walk
- Andre Ethier – 1-for-6 with a double
- Rafael Furcal – 6-for-12 with a walk
- Reed Johnson – 2-for-7 with a double and 4 walks
- Matt Kemp – 3-for-6 with a double
- James Loney – 2-for-5 with a triple
- Russell Martin – 2-for-8 with 3 walks
The Cubs will get their second look of the season at John Ely. The Cubs beat Ely 1-0 at Wrigley back on May 27 but they did not do much against him … Lou’s offense managed only four hits and two walks in 7 1/3 innings.
Ely is coming off his shortest start of the season. The Marlins scored six runs, five earned, on nine hits in 2 2/3 innings. Ely has had a good season and was 1-3 in six starts in June with a 4.29 ERA and a 1.35 WHIP. Ely was throwing the ball a lot better when the Cubs last faced him. Ely was at the end of a 3-1 May in five starts with a 2.18 ERA and a 0.91 WHIP.
This afternoon will be Ely’s eighth home start of the year. He is 2-2 in the first seven with a 4.12 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP.
Cubs Career Numbers against John Ely
- Jeff Baker – 0-for-2
- Marlon Byrd – 0-for-3
- Starlin Castro – 0-for-3
- Tyler Colvin – 1-for-1 with a double
- Mike Fontenot – 1-for-1 with a triple
- Kosuke Fukudome – 1-for-3
- Derrek Lee – 1-for-1 with a double and 2 walks
- Xavier Nady – 0-for-3
- Geovany Soto – 0-for-3
- Ryan Theriot – 0-for-3
Let’s Talk Cubs Baseball …