Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Numbers Breakdown: Bradley 2008 VS Bradley 2009, Ramirez, Samardzija, Sox/Cubs, and More

Milton Bradley Average at the end of June:
2008: .321
2009: .238

RBIs at the end of June:
2008: 49
2009: 17

HR at the end of June:
2008: 16
2009: 5

All of the Cubs have dropped from last year, but nobody has dropped as much as the big free agent signing Milton Bradley.

The numbers don't lie! Up next, Mike Fontenot.

Shifting gears, today's Cubs notes:
  • Jeff Samardzija has been called up to the Cubs to replace Jose Ascaino on the 25-man roster. I'm a big fan of "The Shark", let's hope he makes the most of this opportunity.
  • It's good news on Aramis Ramirez. He could begin a rehab assignment as soon as Thursday. The rehab will be at least 4-5 games. Speculation is that he could be back by the last series before the All-Star break, which is against the Cardinals on Wrigley starting on July 10.
  • The Cubs and White Sox game that was rained out will be made up on September 3 at 1:20 CT at Wrigley Field. The Cubs need to win this game to spit the Cross Town Classic 2009.
  • According to the Sun-Times, Milton Bradley may sit the next 3 days to fix his swing. Lou dopped Milton to 6th in the order yesterday.
  • Angel Guzman could come off the DL next Tuesday if all goes well in his rehab starts this week. He will pitch Thursday for Peoria.
  • Alfonso Soriano is 4th in the All-Star voting for OF, 168,000 votes behind 3rd place Carlos Beltran. The top 3 outfielders in fan voting start in the Mid-Summer Classic.
  • 2008 Cubs first round pick Andrew Cashner has been promoted to AA Tennessee.
  • Mark DeRosa is happy to be back in the NL Central. ''It was definitely strange [Sunday] putting on that uniform of a team that you kind of got up for playing for the Cubs. You know what, though, I did a lot of soul searching that past couple of weeks, about moving on. I didn't leave the Cubs; the Cubs, they left me. So I feel good about the move. I'm excited to be here."
  • Lou said that Sam Fuld will probably start in CF the next 2 games while Bradley is on the bench, Kosuke moving to RF.
  • The Cubs lead the league in quality start from their starting pitcher with 46.
  • Ted Lilly going against the Pirates tonight at 6:10.
  • I'll have the June in Review post up for you some time tomorrow.

That's it for now, but I'll keep you posted.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Numbers Breakdown: Soto 2008 VS Soto 2009, Sweet Lou Book, and More

Numbers Breakdown coming up, but first a few notes:
  • Cubs documentary "We Believe" should be in Chicago theaters by the end of the summer according to Carrie Muskat. A DVD, that will include 106 minutes of bonus features, is expected to be available in September.
  • Aramis Ramirez is expected to go on minor league rehab by the end of the week! Great news!
  • Cubs top prospect Josh Vitters has been moved up to Class A Daytona. He was hitting .316 with 15 home runs and 46 RBIs with Peoria. Vitters will join the D-Cubs tomorrow.
  • Don't forget, you can get full Cubs minor league updates on my Twitter, Cubs Farm Updates.

Now for Tonight's Numbers Breakdown:

Soto's Averages at the end of June-

2008: .286

2009: .224

HR at the end of June-

2008: 13

2009: 8

RBIs at the end of June-

2008: 57

2009: 24

Geo is obviously not hitting near as well as he was a year ago at this point. So far all 3 Cubs that I've taken a look at were hitting better at this time in 2008. We will continue until we have done every Cubs starting position player. Up next, Milton Bradley.

Remember, the numbers don't lie!

Shifting gears, I just finished reading a great Cubs book called "Sweet Lou and the Cubs". George Castle did a great job of describing every angle of Lou's first 2 years in charge of the ballclub. George also wrote chapters about some of the players like Alfonso Soriano, Ryan Theriot, Derrek Lee, Carlos Zambrano, Rich Harden, Ryan Dempster, Reed Johnson, and Kerry Wood. It's a great book that I would recommend to those of your who enjoy reading and the Cubs.

Cubs won tonight, great pitching by Rich Harden! Let's do it again tomorrow!

Cubs Agree to Terms with 21 Draft Picks

Here are some of the Cubs draft picks that have signed:
  • Brett Jackson, OF, 1st Round
  • Wes Darvill, SS, 5th round
  • Blair Springfield, IF, 7th round
  • Robert Whitenack, RHP, 8th Round
  • Richard Jones, C, 9th Round
  • Charles Thomas, 3B, 10th Round
  • John Mincone, LHP, 11th Round
  • Cody Sheids, OF, 15th Round
  • 13 others from later rounds

The Cubs are still looking to sign lots of picks including:

  • D.J. LeMahieu, 2B, 2nd Round
  • Austin Kirt, LHP, 3rd Round
  • Chris Rusin, LHP, 4th Round
  • Brooks Raley, LHP, 6th Round

Also, the Cubs have placed Aaron Miles on the DL and called up Sam Fuld from AAA Iowa. Cubs need a win tonight against the Pirates!

Numbers Breakdown: Soriano 2008 VS Soriano 2009

Batting Average at the end of June:
2008: .290
2009: .235

HR at the end of June:
2008: 15
2009: 14

RBIs at the end of June:
2008: 40
2009: 34

So even with being injured for much of June 2008, Alfonso still had better numbers at this point a year ago. So far we've determined that Kosuke and Soriano were having a better year last year at this point than they are having this year. Up next: Geovany Soto

The numbers don't lie!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

DeRosa, Miles, Ramirez Another Loss, and More

  • The Cubs have lost 2 of 3 to the Chicago White Sox, with a loss today that I don't even want to talk any more about.
  • Late last night Mark DeRosa was traded to the Cardinals for Chris Perez and a PTBNL. The Card got him for pretty much nothing. The Cubs could have easily given up just Kevin Hart and got De-Ro back. Mark is what the Cubs really need right now. And to make matters worse, he was traded to the rival Cardinals.
  • Reports suggest that Mark Teahen is on the Cubs radar.
  • The Cubs are expected to DL Aaron Miles tomorrow with a hyper extended elbow. Sam Fuld could be called up to help the Cubs outfield.
  • Angel Guzman could pitch on Tuesday for the Peoria Chiefs in a minor league rehab.
  • Aramis Ramirez took BP for the 3rd day today.
  • According to Carrie Muskat's blog, the Cubs did not talk with the Indians about trading for DeRosa. The Cubs felt there asking price was too high. (Chris Perez!!! Are you kidding me?)
  • Phil Rodgers of the Chicago Tribune thinks the Cubs should put Carlos Zambrano on waivers.

That's it for now, but I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Cubs Notes: Bradley, Lou, and More

  • Milton Bradley says that there is really not one guy who he feels he can sit down and talk to. "I've been on teams where I have guys I know, or somebody I can just vent to," he said.
  • When Derrek Lee was mentioned Milton said that D-Lee is cool, but "We just don't have that bond."
  • Bradley went on to say that the 2 guys he felt like he could talk to on the Cubs were Gerald Perry and Joey Gathright, both of whom are now gone.
  • The Cubs are a good group of guys according to Milton, but he just hasn't formed any real relationships yet.
  • Lou shouted at Bradley yesterday, "Your not a player, your a piece of (bleep)."
  • Piniella apologized to Milton today, but Lou says he's done looking the other way when players have outbursts in the dugout.
  • Aramis Ramirez took batting practice on the field Friday, and appeared to fare well. After a few more days of BP, he might head out for a minor league rehab assignment for about a week before his possible return to the lineup.
  • Angel Guzman played catch Friday for the first time since going on the DL and said he felt fine. He should be at full strength when he's eligible to return July 6.
  • Reed Johnson said on his blog that he will come back on the first day he's eligible to return.
  • According to the Sun-Times, sources confirmed Friday that the team has had conversations with the Cleveland Indians about Mark DeRosa earlier this month.
  • With Johnson and Ramirez set to come off the DL soon, I have to wonder what the Cubs will do about the roster. I would think when Johnson is activated then Ryan Freel will head back to AAA. Hopefully they keep Fox with the team, but that would mean Andres Blanco would also have to go back down. I guess we'll see!

I'll keep you posted!

Numbers Breakdown: Kosuke of 2008 VS Kosuke of 2009

Batting Average at the end of June:
2008- .296
2009- .262

HR at the end of June:
2008: 4
2009: 5

RBIs at the end of June:
2008: 34
2009: 23

So, this is a short little number's breakdown, but the point is that Kosuke is actually doing worse then he was last year at this point in the season. We'll see if he has a stronger final 3 months. Kosuke was one Cub that we were hoping to see a big improvement in, and that didn't really happen. Some time in the coming week we'll compare Bradley, Soto, and Soriano's 2008 and 2009.

Remember, the numbers don't lie!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Cubs pull one out againt the Sox, Soto, Bradley, and More

  • The Cubs held on to beat the White Sox by a run today. Jake Fox and Geovany Soto delivered home runs. Carlos Marmol struggled in the 8th walking 2 and allowing 2 hits are retiring just 1 man. However, Sean Marshall came in and threw 1 pitch and got a big double play!
  • The Cubs needed this win! Kevin Gregg got the save!
  • Milton Bradley was pulled from the game today after exchanging some words with Lou in the dugout after Bradley was retired in his first 3.
  • Geovany Soto tested positive for marijuana during the WBC. Soto admits to having tried it once but says it was a big mistake. Piniella admitted that he "smoked a dope one time in my life and it didn't do a (bleep) thing for me and I never tried it again. Let's hope Soto's 3 run bomb today is a sign that he's back.
  • The Cubs No. 1 Draft pick Brett Jackson has passed his physical and officially signed his contract worth $972,000. The outfielder will head to Arizona to workout at Fitch Park before joining Class A Short Season Boise.
  • Note that the July 6 game at Wrigley against the Braves will start at 6:05 instead of 7:05.
  • Aramis Ramirez took BP today and could begin a rehab assignment soon. This is great news! We need Rami!
  • Aaron Miles has been bothered by a hyper extended right elbow and is day-to-day.
  • Angel Guzman threw a side session today and all went well.
  • Reed Johnson said on his blog that he will be playing on the 16th day on the DL.
  • The Cubs will send a pair of minor leaguers to the Futures Game, part of MLB All Star Weekend. Josh Vitter will play 3B for the USA Team, and Starlin Castro will play SS for the World Team. The 11th annual event will take place on All-Star Sunday, July 12 at 1 PM CT. MLB.com and ESPN2 will cover the game. Last year, the Cubs were represented by Welington Castillo.
  • Jayson Stark on ESPN.com says the Cubs have considered trying to reacquire Mark DeRosa.
  • They've also done some searching for a bat, but they're not sure where they'd play that new hitter. Stark says this give versatile DeRosa extra appeal.

Latest Cubs Podcast for you:

That's it for now, but I'll keep you posted!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Draft Picks, Johnson Injured, and more

  • Milton Bradley's 2011 option will vest if he plays 75 games in 2009. So Milton needs to play in 22 more games this year to make $12M in 2011.
  • The Cubs have agreed to termswith first round draft pick Brett Jackson.
  • Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports says the Cubs hope to get Aramis Ramirez to determining whether or not they will make a deal at the deadline.
  • The Cubs have signed a Taiwanesse high schooler, Chen Pin-chie, to a minor league deal.
  • The Cubs have activated Ryan Freel and placed Reed Johnson on the DL.

DJ LaMahieu Update:

Game 1 VS Texas: LSU Wins 7-6, DJ goes 2-3 with a walk, 3 RBIs and 2 Runs.

Game 2 VS Texas: Texas wins 5-1, DJ goes 1-4.

Game 3 tonight will decide the CWS, I'll update you tomorrow!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Minor Leauge Updates, Red-Hot Cubs, Rumors and the Deadline Nears, and More

The red-hot Cubs have won 4 in a row! Tonight they will go for the 5th straight in a 1 game makeup against the Atlanta Braves.
Here are some Cubs notes;
  • The Cubs are resting Milton Bradley and Alfonso Soriano tonight.
  • Gordon Edes says the Cubs are series about Pedro even though they don't like his demands.
  • Bruce Miles doesn't think Pedro to the Cubs is likely.
  • The Cubs may not be able to bring in a bat because of the ownership situation.
  • Click for an interesting ownership update.
  • Mark Cuban has no plans to bid on the Cubs.
  • The Cubs are one of the teams that Peter Gammons thinks need to make a move before the trade deadline.
  • Felipe Lopez is a name the Cubs could have interest in.
  • Jake Peavy and Erik Bedard probably won't be traded because of their injuries.

From now on, minor league updates will be posted daily on my Twitter Cubs Farm Updates.

So click here to get full daily updates on the minor leagues!

I'll also continue to have minor league updates on all off days.

Let's go get 5 in a row!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Another Dramatic Win (Updated with more notes)

Another great win for the Chicago Cubs yesterday, you can make it 3 dramatic wins in a row! The Cubbies have been looking very good and will go for the sweep against the Indians today at 1:20 CT. The Cubs won it yesterday by scoring 2 runs in the 13th against Kerry Wood. Today's starting pitcher is Randy Wells, let's get him his first big league win!

Some other Cubs notes:

  • The Cubs have made a roster move, placing Angel Guzman on the 15-day DL and recalling Kevin Hart from Iowa.
  • Reed Johnson is not available, he may be sidelined a few days with a stiff back.
  • Cubs draft pick DJ LeMahieu went 1-5 with a walk and 2 runs scored in a 14-5 LSU win on Friday. LSU is in the CWS championship and will play Mon., Tues., and Wed. this week against Texas in a best of 3 series. I'll keep you posted on LeMahieu.
  • The National Baseball Hall of Fame has their Baseball Hall of Fame Classic this afternoon. The new annual event replaces the MLB exhibition game that ended last year with a rain out between the Cubs and Padres. This event features MLB legends. Former Cub Lee Smith is playing center field. Fergie Jenkins will pitch in the game.
  • Kevin Hart was 3-3 with a 3.10 ERA as a starter at AAA before being called up to the Cubs bullpen today.
  • Ryan Freel is hitting .400 with 4 RBIs in his 6 games on the AAA rehab assignment so far.

I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Pedro, DeRosa, Radio Recaps and More

The Sox took game 1 of the Crosstown Classic at Wrigley yesterday. The Cubs continued to not score any runs. Let's hope the bats get going behind Carlos Zambrano today. Here are some Cubs rumors and notes:

There's plenty of Radio Recaps that I need to catch up on posting! Let's start with Jim Hendry on Sports Central earlier in the week:

  • Lou and the staff talked to Milton about his blunders in the field. Jim says you can't excuse concentration mistakes.
  • Jim says everyone knows that Bradley is a much better hitter than he's shown.
  • Hendry would be shocked if better days weren't ahead with the bat.
  • Soriano, Soto, and Bradley haven't been hitting. At what point does Jim try to do something?
  • As long as you pitch well, you usually end up coming around with the bats.
  • There is no position player on the team that will tell you they are swinging the bat the best they can.
  • Jim says he has a really good relationship with DeRosa, and when Ramirez went down he wishes we still had Mark on the club. He has a great relationship with Kerry.
  • Even with DeRosa, we wouldn't have that much different of a record.
  • Jim is preaching that we're still fine! He reminds everyone of 2007.
  • Kap asked at what point does Jim say that he has to do something if the Cubs are still not hitting. Hendry said that guys are starting to swing the bat better.
  • The Cubs only need a week or 2 of good play to be in first place.
  • Jim says that the Cubs are scouting Pedro, but anybody that is available is scouted by them. The Cubs have scouts to look at every player out there.
  • The Cubs are not looking for pitching right now.
  • Jim says it would be a positive to get the sale over with.

Ryan Theriot joined David Kaplan and Steve Stone:

  • Gerald Perry and Ryan were friends, and Ryan says he learned a lot from him.
  • Theriot is super exited to have Von Joshua in the clubhouse.
  • Ryan jokes that he took steroids that's why he has hit 6 home runs.
  • Lou told Theriot to look to drive the ball a little more, and it's more of a thought process than anything.
  • Ryan is good friends with DeRosa. Theriot said Mark loved the fans and loved the team in Chicago. The Cubs could definitely use DeRosa now.
  • The team that scares the Cubs to most in the NL Central is Milwaukee. St. Louis has a young team as well. You can't count out the Reds either according to Theriot.
  • He gets the rebounds over Mike Fontenot on the court.
  • Ryan likes to play basketball on the road with Pat Hughes.
  • He says that there is defiantly a different feel when the Cubs play the White Sox, and it's almost a playoff atmosphere, but at the same time it's just an interleague game.
  • Theriot says that the article came out earlier this year the the Cubs have better looking fans then the White Sox, so the Cubs have already won that.

Kap talked with new Cubs hitting coach Von Joshua:

  • Von can't just flip a switch and the Cubs will score 9 runs, but he has done a lot of video work in the last few days. One of the things he's seen is that it looks like these guys are trying to hit every pitch out of the ball park. He pointed out that Soto especially is in a "home run mode".
  • Joshua is just trying to get the guys to get back to the basics.
  • He says that it seems like Ryan Theriot is trying to turn on everything, instead of hitting the ball to the right side like he used to. Ryan realizes that he's not a home run hitter just because he hit a few home runs.
  • Von is stressing to Theriot to not give up on what got him to the big leagues.
  • Soriano has said that his knee is fine, and Alfonso is just trying to find his timing and rhythm right now.
  • Joshua says that Lou may try moving Soriano down in the lineup latter on.
  • When guys like Lee and Soriano start getting a little older, they have to make some changes.
  • Kap would like to see Theriot is the lead off spot. Von agrees that Theriot is the best choice to hit lead off if Soriano moves down.
  • He promises that things will turn around.
  • Von has been focusing on Kosuke and trying to understand what his game plan is. It's just a matter of Fukudome executing what he wants to do at the plate.
  • Kosuke is very important to the Cubs according to Von.

Cubbie Birthdays:

Lou Brock (70), Felix Heredia (34), and Taylor Phillips (76).

This Date in Cubs History:

2002- In the first major league game to feature four players with 400 career homers, the Cubs beat the Rangers, 4-3, as Alex Gonzalez hits a walk-off homer in the bottom of the ninth inning. Sammy Sosa (475), Fred McGriff (459) and Juan Gonzalez (401) watched Rafael Palmerio add his 460th home run to the total.

2006- In a game in which veteran hurler Kenny Rogers wins his 200th career victory, the Tigers go yard eight times to set a club record. Cubs starter Mark Prior, who recently returned from the 60-day disabled list, gives up three of the home runs in the 6-run first inning of the 12-3 barrage at Wrigley Field

Well, that's it for now, but I'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sosa, Fox Called Up, and Another Rain Out

  • Former Cubs slugger Sammy Sosa has reportedly tested positive for PEDs.
  • I don't think that this is much of a shock to anyone. It's unfortunate that one of our Cubs fan favorites cheated to do what he did, but it was a great time for Cub fans in 1998, mostly because of Sosa. Will Sammy be inducted into the MLB Hall of Fame?
  • Jake Fox has been called up from AAA Iowa. I don't know why he was sent down in the first place. The Cubs needed the extra hitter and big bat off the bench, and a team that is struggling with the bats couldn't stay with 13 pitchers for long.
  • The corresponding move was Jason Waddell being placed on the DL. The Cubs could not have brought Fox back up yet because unless someone was injured, he had to stay in the minors for 10 days. In my opinion the Cubs may be faking this injury to Waddell.
  • Sammy was one of the 104 names from 2003 by the way.
  • Lou talks about Sosa.
  • The Cubs and White Sox were rained out yesterday. No make up date has been announced, both the Cubs and Sox have off days September 3 and 10 so we'll see.
  • Ryan Dempster will pitch today at 1:20 and Carlos Zambrano has been moved to the series finale tomorrow.
  • The weather is looking good in Chicago today.

A look at the Cubs rain make-ups:

  • June 22 VS ATL
  • July 12 VS STL (doubleheader)
  • July 30 VS HOU

Cubbie Birthdays:

Haven't done these in awhile, so a happy b-day on June 9 to Mike Fontenot! Today's Cubbie Birthdays: None!

Monday: Ty Cline, Ken Henderson, Champ Summers and Billy Williams.

Yesterday: Ken Johnson, Jose Nieves, Calvin Schiraldi, and Kerry Wood.

This Date in Cubs History:

1915- In relief, Cubs right-hander George Washington Zabel throws 18 and 1/3 innings of the Cubs' 4-3 victory over in Dodgers at West Side Park. 'Zip', establishing the major league record for longest relief stint in one game, beats Brooklyn starter Jeff Pfeffer, who tosses a 19-inning complete-game.

1971- Don Kessinger goes 6-for-6, stroking five singles and a double. The Cubs leadoff hitter's perfect performance at the plate contributes to the team's 7-6 ten-inning victory over Cardinals at Wrigley Field.

I don't care who wins as long as it's the Cubs!

Monday, June 15, 2009

6-15 Off Day Notes: Former Cubs Updates, Ryan Freel Rehab, Minor Leauge Report, and More!

Well let's start by checking in with our former Cubs!:
  • Mark DeRosa (CLE): .277 AVG, 11 HR, 44 RBI
  • Kerry Wood (CLE): 2-2, 4.84 ERA, 8 SV, 27 K
  • Felix Pie (BAL): .202 AVG, 2 HR, 5 RBI
  • Rich Hill (BAL): 2-1, 5.81 ERA, 23 K
  • Ronny Cedeno (SEA): .139 AVG, 2 HR, 5 RBI
  • Jason Marquis (COL): 8-4, 3.77 ERA, 41 K
  • Henry Blanco (SD): .193 AVG, 3 HR, 7 RBI
  • Bobby Howry (SF): 0-3, 4.24 ERA, 14 K
  • Michael Wuertz (OAK): 2-1, 2.86 ERA, 28 K
  • Chad Gaudin (SD): 2-5, 6.16 ERA, 46 K
  • Luis Vizcaino (CLE): 1-2, 2.19 ERA, 11 K
  • Joey Gathright (BAL): Playing at AAA NOR, 24 games, .293 ERA, 4 RBI, 8 SB with NOR.

For the Minor League Report Here are the Important Dates coming up in the Cubs system:

  • Boise Hawks (Class A Short Season) Opening Day is this Saturday (June 20) at 7:15 VS TC. They play an exhibition on Friday night.
  • The Mesa Cubs (Rookie Ball) Opening Day is this Sunday (June 21) VS AZL Angels.
  • FSL All Star Game also Saturday, June 20.
  • MWL All Star Game is Tuesday, June 23.

The Iowa Cubs lost to Okla. City today 5-1. Iowa falls to 33-32, 5.5 GB second place in PCL American North. Ryan Freel went 1-3 with a single. Other notes from game:

  • Luis Rivas: 0-1
  • Sam Fuld: 0-4
  • Jason Dubois: 1-3, BB
  • John-Ford Griffin: 3-4, RBI
  • Bobby Scales (played first base): 1-4
  • Steve Clevenger: 1-4
  • Matt Camp: 0-4
  • Nate Spears: 0-4
  • Anderson Machado: 1-3, R
  • Jeff Samardzija: 6 IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 1 BB, 4 K
  • Greg Reinhard: 1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 1 K
  • Justin Berg: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 K

Jeff Samardzija took the loss and falls to 3-3 with a 4.27 ERA at AAA this year.

NL Central Standings:

  • 1. Milwaukee: 34-29
  • 2. St. Louis: 0.5 GB
  • 3. Cincinnati/ Cubs: 2.5 GB
  • 5. Pittsburgh/Houston: 4 GB

Alfonso Soriano is the only Cub that has a chance to be an All Star Starter, he is in 4th among NL outfielders, the top 3 start in the game. The Cubs need your votes on Cubs.com!

Tomorrow the Cubs and White Sox will do battle, the first of this year's Cross Town Showdown. Here are some Cross Town Showdown Notes:

  • 27 of the 66 battle between the Cubs and Sox have been decided by 1 or 2 runs.
  • 13 have been decided in the the last AB.
  • 5 gave gone to extra innings.
  • Sammy Sosa has the most HRs for the Cubs against the Sox with 11, Zambrano has the most wins with 5.
  • 165 players have appeared in at least one game with both the Cubs and Sox.
  • There have been 22 trades between the two teams, the most recent Neal Cotts for David Aardsma in November 2006.

A couple random former Cubs playing in Independent Ball Updates:

  • Adam Greenberg, the guy who saw one pitch in his big league career with the Cubs and was hit in the head and was never heard from again, is back in baseball and with Bridgeport in the Atlantic League. Here are his stats: .217 AVG, 16 games, 11 RBIs, 4 2Bs, 1 HR.
  • Randall Simon is playing in the Northern League with Fargo, he is hitting .304 with 5 HR and 19 RBIs in 27 games.

Cubs second round Draft Pick DJ LeMahieu went 3-5 with 2 runs scored in LSU's 9-1 CWS win over Arkansas tonight. I'll keep you posted on how he does in the CWS.

Remember you can email me anytime at cubsblogmailbag@aol.com.

The next Cubs off day is Thursday, July 9, so that'll be my next Former Cubs Update and Full Minor League report.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Von Joshua Bio, Ron Santo Golf, Minor League All Stars and more Cubs Notes

Here are the latest Cubs Notes:
  • The Cubs won in dramatic fashion today on a 9th inning walk off single by Ryan Theriot. Derrek Lee played a great game on the base paths and at the plate. Lee had a 13-game hitting streak going. Soto doubled twice and Lilly pitched a great game in the win.
  • Pitcher Jay Jackson has been taken off the DL for the Tennessee Smokies. Outfielder Doug Deeds has been promoted to AA. Brandon Guyer and Todd Blackford have been sent back to High Class A Daytona.
  • The Daytona Cubs will send 3 players to the FSL all star game: SS Starlin Castro, C Robinson Chirinos, and SP Ryan Searle.
  • The Daytona Cubs coaching staff from 2008 will coach the all star game, including manager Jody Davis.
  • The FSL all-star game is next Saturday, June 20. I'll let you know how the Cubs guys do.
  • The MWL allstars have also been announced, and 6 Peoria Chiefs have made the team. they are: 3B Josh Vitters, OF Kyler Burke, DH Josh Harrison, INF Rebel Ridling, P Chris Carpenter, and P Ryan Butcher. The game is Tuesday June 23, so again I'll let you know how the Cubs farm hands do.
  • I'll have a full minor league report included with tomorrow's off day notes.
  • Ron Santo's golf tournament is on the Cubs off day tomorrow to raise money for JDRF. Ronnny does lots of hard work for his great cause.
  • Cubs documentary "We Believe" will be shown on June 28, more info on Muskat's Blog.
  • Ryan Freel will rehab tomorrow with Iowa, I'll let you know how that goes as well.
  • The Cubs new hitting coach is Von Joshua as I mentioned earlier, here is his bio from the Iowa Cubs website. (you have to scroll down under Pat Listach.)

Cubs off day tomorrow, so I'll have an update on the former Cubs and our minor league teams.

Gerald Perry Fired

The Cubs hitting coach, Gerald Perry, has been relieved of his duties today. Someone had to take the blame for the Cubs recent struggles at the plate, so Jim Hendry decided to make a coaching change even though it is not Perry's fault. That's the way the game works, and some change had to be made to get this team going. Von Joshua, who was the hitting coach for the Iowa Cubs, has been promoted to the Cubs hitting coach and will join the team on Tuesday. Hopefully a familiar face will help guys like Soto, Theriot, Fontenot, Fox, Hill, and Hoffpauir who have worked with Von in the past.

I would like to personally wish the best of luck to Gerald, who is a great guy and a great coach, with his coaching career in the future, I'm sure he will find another job as a hitting coach.

Let's hope the Cubs get those bats going!

Also, by the way, in the College World Series Cubs draft pick David LeMahieu went 3-5 with 2 runs scored and an RBI in a win for LSU last night. The Cubs drafted LeMahieu in the second round. I'll keep you posted on all the Cubs draft picks playing in the CWS.

Cubs Continue To Struggle

The Chicago Cubs have not been scoring any runs on a consistent basis. On the last road trip, the Cubs came out of it with at .500 record but all the games were a struggle. Now back at home, this team has not come around. Harden, coming off the DL, pitched a gem yesterday but the bats couldn't help him out. The Cubs have already lost this weekend interleague series with the Twins, but let's win won today and take some momentum into next week's big 3-game series with the White Sox. The Cross Town Showdown is always 6 big games no matter where the teams are in the standings because it determines bragging rights for the city of Chicago's fans. Here are the latest Cubs rumors, news, and notes:
  • The Cubs are keeping an eye on Pedro Martinez. Martinez recently threw a side session for the Rays and it appears that the Cubs are also scouting the free agent, 37 year old pitcher.
  • Peavy is out for 3 months with an ankle injury. Thank goodness that this will hopefully finally end the Peavy to Chicago rumors.
  • The Cubs drafted Joey Jockety, the son of Reds GM Walt Jockety.
  • Gordon Wittenmyer says Milton Bradley is a $30 million elephant in the room. Not only has he been struggling so much at the plate, he's also having trouble in the outfield as of late.
  • Steve Rosenbloom doesn't feel that Pedro is the answer for the Cubs. (I agree the Cubs need to start scoring some runs, the pitching is fine.)
  • When the Cubs activated Rich Harden off the DL, they Bobby Scales to AAA. So now a offense that cannot score hardly any runs is short one bat because the Cubs are carrying 13 pitchers!
  • Ryan Freel is beginning a rehab start with AAA Iowa tomorrow.
  • This Old Cub, a movie about Ron Santo, will be on the MLB Network tonight at 9 CT.

We're only 3.5 games back, but there's 3 teams ahead of us. Let's go turn in around and end this 4 game skid!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Cubs Draft Update: Round 18-30

Yesterday, day 2 of the 2009 MLB First Year Player Draft continued after my last update. scroll own on the blog to find info about the first 17 rounds that I posted yesterday.
  • 18. Matt Williams, C, Duke University
  • 19. Segrio Burruel, C, Trevor Browne HS
  • 20. Eric Erickson, LHP, University of Miami
  • 21. Greg Rohan, 1B, Kent State University
  • 22. Derrick Fitzgerald, 2B, Dyersburg State CC
  • 23. Jeffrey Pruitt, CF, Cal State CC
  • 24. Gerardo Esquivel, RHP, De La Salle Institude (Chicago)
  • 25. Justin Bour, 1B, George Mason University
  • 26. Stven Grife, RHP, Mercyhurst College
  • 27. Corey Martin, RHP, Western Carolina University
  • 28. Jordan Petraitis, 3B, Miami University
  • 29. Timothy Clubb, RHP, Missouri State University
  • 30. Daniel Shppard, C, Downers Grove North HS

The Draft will continue today with the final day of picks. Coverage of Day 3 begins at 10:30 AM CT on MLB.com. I'll update you on the Cubs final day of picks later.

Here are a few Cubs Rumors for today:

  • Jake Peavy is unlikely to be traded unless it is to the Cubs.
  • Ryan Spilborghs is not on the Cubs radar according to Ken Rosenthal.
  • According to Hot Stove Cubbies, the Cubs front office is getting frustrated and annoyed with Milton Bradley. The Cubs have many players that they are looking into, one of them is RF Brad Hawpe.

We'll see if the Cubs make any moves!

On the field, the Cubs fell last night to the Astros. The series is now even, and the 2 teams will play a rubber match today at 1:05 CT, Ryan Dempster pitching against Russ Ortiz.

Carlos Zambrano pitched a great game yesterday, but the Cubs couldn't help him out with the bats, the only offense was a Geovany Soto home run. The Astros won it in the 9th with a run against Angel Guzman. Hopefully the Cubs turn in around with a win today.

I'll keep you posted on everything Cubs as always.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Cubs Draft Update

OF Brett Jackson was picked by the Cubbies for their first round pick of the 2009 MLB First Year Player Draft yesterday. Here's what the MLB Network guys had to say after the pick:

  • He swings and misses a lot, but that is the only knock on him.
  • Harold likes his tools, and thought he'd be a pick earlier in the draft.
  • John Hart says that "they got a real good baseball player late in the first round.
  • Frank Marcos says that the Cubs have to be excited about this pick, and said Jackson has ability, tools, and upside. Frank called it an excellent pick.
  • John says he's a hitter, an athlete, and he get the most out his ability.
  • He's a kid that will hit 12-20 home runs.
  • He loves to play the game.
  • Reynolds says that the strikeouts can be cut down.
  • He runs pretty well and is a good outfielder.

Here's some more info and stats on Jackson:

  • OF
  • Bats Left Handed.
  • College: University of California
  • He's a big Cub fan, went to Cubs game on his birthday in 2007.
  • Was a Junior is college.
  • This season batted .321 in 53 games with 8 HR and 41 RBIs.

Video on Day 1 if Cubs Draft!

Cubs Second Pick: David LeMahieu:

  • SS
  • College: LSU
  • Solid approach at the plate and good baseball instincts.
  • 79th overall player taken
  • B/T: Right
  • Was drafted out of High School in the 41st round in 2007 but did not play.
  • Hit .360 in 35 games this year with .456 OBP.

Cubs 3rd Pick: Austin Kirk:

  • Drafted out of High School (Owassa High in Okla.)
  • LHP
  • Threw 2 no-hitters this year.
  • Went 9-1 with an 0.45 ERA
  • Batted .408 with 50 RBIs.
  • He worked in the winter with Cory Patton of the Blue Jays organization.

Rest of Cubs Picks:

  • Cubs 4th Round Pick: Chris Rusin, LHP, U Kentucky, Pick #140 overall.
  • Cubs 5th round pick: Wesley Darvill, SS, Brookwood HS
  • Cubs 6th round pick: Brooks Raley, LHP, Texas A&M, here's what MLB.com said on him:Click for scouting report on Raley.
  • Cubs 7th round pick: Blair Springfield, IF, MacArthur HS ( from IL, B/T: right)
  • 8th Round: Robert Whitenack, RHP, Suny Old Westbury College
  • 9th: Richard Jones, C, The Citadel, Bats Left
  • 10th: Joseph Thomas, 3B, Edward Waters Col
  • 11th: John Mincone, Suffolk CC West, LHP
  • 12th: Burundi Davis, OF, Howard Col
  • 13th: Chad Taylor, SS, Jefferson HS
  • 14th: Daniel Keefe, RHP, U Tampa
  • 15th: Bryan Shields, CF, Auburn U Montgomery
  • 16th: Keenyn Walker, CF, Switch Hitter, Judge Memorial Catholic HS
  • 17th: Barrett Dail, RHP, Mt. Olive Col.

Other cubs Notes:

  • The Cubs made a roster move today. They activated Aaron Miles from the 15 day DL and sent Jake Fox down to AAA-Iowa to make room on the roster for Miles. I don't like this move, Fox hits better than Blanco and Scales, but I see why they kept Blanco on the roster, he has been hitting as of late.
  • Rich Harden's rehab start went well on Monday, he gave up 1 ER in 4.1 IP.
  • Aramis Ramirez took soft grounders and swings with a fungo bat today. The Cubs are hoping he can hit with a normal bat soon!

I'll update you again on the Cubs draft tonight. The Cubs got a BIG win against the Astros yesterday, let's go get 2 in a row tonight!

Monday, June 8, 2009

June 8 Off Day Notes: Minor League Report, Radio Recaps and more!

Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune joined Mully and Hanley today to talk Cubs:
  • Zambrano told Sullivan that he will be out of baseball after the contract is up.
  • Paul and Carlos have a $100 bet over whether Big Z will retire at the end of this contract.
  • He is sure that Zambrano will change his mind and no one is taking him seriously.
  • Sullvian said that Z could have easily gotten permission to miss the team flight, but he wanted to do things his own way.
  • Sully called Carlos "The Reggie Jackson of the team".
  • Lou met with Carlos once about the flight and it was only 5-10 minutes long.
  • The Cubs have the starting pitching to put together a winning streak. The hitters have wasted a lot of good starts by the staff.
  • The offense has been "painful to watch", and this team is going to have to win a lot of low scoring games this season.
  • Paul says that this just "isn't a good lineup, it just isn't".
  • The media has known about Dempster's daughter since April, but the writers were asked to not write about it until Demp decided he wanted to talk about it this weekend.
  • Ryan says that he feels a lot better when he's with his teammates and baseball is helping him get through this.

Next on Mully & Hanley, Tim Kolishaw of Dallas Morning News talked about Sammy Sosa:

  • Kolishaw is leaning towards voting for Sammy on his ballot for the Hall of Fame.
  • McGuire is at a whole different level of guilt than Sosa.
  • Tim doesn't think the corked bat keeps him out of the Hall of Fame.
  • Kolishaw doesn't think it is right to keep all steroid possible users out of the Hall of Fame unless there is clear evidence against them.
  • Kolishaw says that the good thing with A-Rod is that he has a few more years to play and the writers still have 10 more years to decide if they will voted for him. Tim seemed to be leaning towards voting no for Alex.
  • Tim thinks all the writers are up in the air about the steroids users.
  • The guys think that if you take Sosa, you have to take Bonds and his incredible numbers.
  • It's going to be hard to write down Barry's name on a ballot.
  • Kolishaw doesn't think Rodrigez will finish with better numbers with than Barry.

The Cubs have another Off Day next Monday, so I will wait until then to update the Former Cubs.

Minor League Report:

Rich Harden is scheduled to make a rehab start in tonight's I-Cubs game at 7:05. I'll update you with info on his start tonight or tomorrow. The Iowa Cubs are 28-30, 3rd place in the PCL North.

The Tennessee Smokies are 24-34, 3rd in the SOU North.

Last week I updated all the stats for the Cubs AA and AAA players, so this week we will to the Class A guys.

Starting With the Hitters for the High Class A Daytona Cubs:

  • R. Chirinos: .344 AVG, 8 HR, 29 RBI
  • T. Campana: .313 AVG, 3 RBI
  • S. Castro: .302 AVG, 2 HR, 17 RBI
  • L. Flores: 3-10 with an RBI
  • J. Opitz: .259 AVG, 1 HR, 6 RBI
  • J. Jones: 3-12
  • M. Gonzalez: .245 AVG, 1 HR, 14 RBI
  • R. Keedy: .241 AVG, 11 RBI
  • N. Samson: .240 AVG, 16 RBI
  • J. Wyatt: .237 AVG, 1 HR, 10 RBI
  • J. Rosa: .223 AVG, 1 HR, 20 RBI
  • D. Johnson: .186 AVG, 4 HR, 13 RBI

Now the D-Cubs Pitchers Stats:

  • D Cales: 2-0, 1.59 ERA
  • D. Sasser: 1-0, 1.69 ERA
  • A. Cashner: 1.75 ERA
  • A. Alburquerque: 1-0, 2.10 ERA
  • L. Sommer: 1-1, 2.19 ERA
  • R. Dolis: 1-3, 2.77 ERA
  • H. Williamson: 4-2, 3.75 ERA
  • D. McDaniel: 3-2, 3.86 ERA
  • J. Pina: 1-1, 3.93 ERA
  • R. Searle: 4-4, 4.01 ERA
  • C. Muschko: 3-1, 5.01 ERA
  • S. Vento: 0-3, 5.32 ERA
  • J. Leverton: 2-6, 5.87 ERA

As a team Daytona is 24-26, 3rd in FSL North.

The Peoria Chiefs are 30-24, in 3rd place in the MID Western. All 4 of the Cubs Farm Clubs are in 3rd place! Here are the Chiefs hitters stats:

  • Josh Harrision: .346 AVG, 3 HR, 24 RBI
  • Josh Vitters: .343 AVG, 13 HR, 35 RBI
  • David Macias: .302 AVG, 6 RBI
  • Tony Campana: .283 AVG, 5 RBI
  • Kyler Burke: .278 AVG, 4 HR, 25 RBI
  • Rebel Ridling: .270 AVG, 6 HR, 37 RBI
  • Mario Mercedes: .267 AVG, 1 HR, 5 RBI
  • Michael Brenly: .264 AVG, 2 HR, 16 RBI
  • Junior Lake: .245 AVG, 2 HR, 13 RBI
  • Ryan Flahertry: .243 AVG, 7 HR, 24 RBI
  • Cliff Anderson: .237 AVG, 0 HR, 3 RBI
  • Nelson Perez: .225 AVG, 6 HR, 23 RBI
  • Luis Flores: .208 AVG, 2 HR, 4 RBI
  • Andrew Rundle: .197 AVG, 1 HR, 8 RBI
  • Francisco Guzman: 2-21

And the Chiefs Pitchers:

  • Christopher Carpenter: 2-3, 3.04 ERA
  • Marcus Hatley: 4-3, 4.72 ERA
  • Chris Archer: 2-1, 1.76 ERA
  • Alberto Cabrera: 4-2, 3.32 ERA
  • Aaron Shafer: 4-2, 5.17 ERA
  • Jeffrey Beliveau: 1-2, 3.89 ERA
  • Justin Bristow: 2-2, 4.88 ERA
  • Mike Perconte: 3-1, 3.23 ERA
  • Kevin Kreier: 3-1, 3.82 ERA
  • Eric Hameren: 1-3, 6.20 ERA
  • Ryan Buchter: 1-0, 2.35 ERA
  • Chris Huseby: 1-3, 2.11 ERA
  • Chris Siegfried: 2.89 ERA
  • Josh Whitlock: 1-1, 6.19 ERA
  • Manolin De Leon: 1-0, 3.00 ERA, 9 IP
  • Jose Pina: 2 IP, 22.50 ERA

The NL Central Standings:

  • Milwaukee: 33-24, First Place
  • St. Louis: 31-27, 2.5 GB
  • Cubs: 28-26, 3.5 GB
  • Cincinnati: 28-26, 3.5 GB
  • Pittsburgh: 26-30, 6.5 GB
  • Houston: 25-30, 7 GB

Remember, you can email questions/comments anytime to cubsblogmailbag@aol.com.

I'll keep you posted on Rich Harden's rehab!

MLB Draft Preview: Day 2

It’s time to take a look at the Cubs First Year Player Drafts Pasts. Let’s break down who they took in the first round of each year, and what Players they could have had instead.

Cubs First Round Pick: Mark Prior (#2 overall)
Where is he now?: Still in MLB with Padres, but has spent most of career on the DL.
Who the Cubs could have had:

  • Gavin Floyd
  • Mark Teixeira
  • Mike Fontenot or Aaron Heilman (both selected in the first round, current Cubs)
  • Noah Lowry
  • Dan Haren
  • J.J. Hardy

Cubs First Round Pick: Bobby Brownlie (#21 overall)
Where is he now?: Last year Brownlie played in the Nationals organization. He never made it to the big leagues.
Who the Cubs could have had with that pick:

  • Jeff Francoer
  • Matt Cain
  • Micah Owings
  • Jonathan Broxton
  • Brian McCann
  • Curtis Granderson

Cubs First Round Pick: Ryan Harvey (#6 overall)
Where is he now?: Playing in Rockies organization. Has yet to make Big League debut, has not played higher than AA.
Who the Cubs could have had with that pick:

  • Carlos Quentin
  • Brian Anderson
  • Aaron Hill
  • Tony Gywnn Jr.

Cubs did not pick in first round.

Cubs First Round Pick: Mark Pawelek (#20 overall)
Where is he now?: Has not made it past Class A. Injured himself in 2007 when he tripped over his Play Station.
Who the Cubs could have had with that pick:

  • Colby Rasmus
  • Jacob Ellsbury
  • Chase Headly
  • Yunel Escobar
  • Kevin Slowey

Cubs First Round Pick: Tyler Colvin (#13 overall)
Where is he now?: Still in Cubs organization. Has not made it past AA. Batting .250 with a .326 OBP in 32 games with the Daytona Cubs this season.

Cubs First Round Pick: Josh Vitters (#3 overall)
Where is he now?: Tearing it up in Class A ball in Cubs organization. This pick might have actually been a good one.

Cubs First Round Pick: Andrew Cashner
Where is he now?: 1.75 ERA in 8 games with Daytona so far this year.

Let’s hope the Cubs do better this year than they have in the past!

Full Drafts for Cubs:

Guys who the Cubs could be interested in for the 2009 first round pick:

  • Chad Jenkins, P, Kennesaw State
  • Tim Wheeler, OF, Sac. State
  • A.J. Pollack, P, ND
  • Eric Arnett, P, Indiana University
Well, that does it for previewing the draft! I’ll have an update Wednesday morning and post a full Cubs Draft Recap with info on all the Cubs selections on Tuesday night.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

MLB Draft Preview: Day 1

This Tuesday, the MLB First Year Player Draft will take place. On Tuesday, the MLB Network will cover the draft from 5-7:30 CT. After that, MLB.com will have Live coverage for the rest of the draft. Tomorrow I will take a look at the Cubs draft history, but right now let's take a look at some notes for this year's Cubs draft:
  • Cubs MLB.com draft preview video.
  • Billy Williams will represent the team at the draft.
  • The Cubs first pick will be 31st overall.
  • The Cubs lost a supplemental round pick (44th overall) for signing Milton Bradley.
  • Here is the full first round order.
  • The Cubs are focusing on doing well deep in the draft according to Carrie Muskat.
  • The Single-A Short Season Boise Hawks will open their season June 20. A lot of the Cubs draft picks will go to Boise.

That's it for now, tomorrow our draft preview continues with a look at the Cubs Draft History, including updates on the guys they picked in recent years, and guys they could have had instead. On Wednesday I will have updates on the draft and a full Cubs Draft recap Thursday.

I'll keep you posted on the Draft!

Demp Personal Issues, Miles&Harden Update, and more

  • Ryan Dempster has been dealing with some issues off the field. His daughter, Riley, was born prematurely in March. She has a rare form of DiGeorge Syndrome. It's difficult for her to keep her food down.
  • "I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy," Dempster told the Sun-Times. "I wouldn't wish the person I hate most in the world to go through that because I wouldn't wish any little kid to have to go through that."
  • Aaron Miles played for the Iowa Cubs on Saturday. He played at 3rd base for 5 innings and went 2-3. The I-Cubs won 3-1. Miles is expected to be activated this Wednesday day.
  • When Miles is activated it'll be interesting to see who the Cubs send down; Fox, Scales, or Blanco. I think they should be sending Blanco down, but he's the one of them that has been starting almost everyday.
  • According to the Sun-Times, the Cubs are having some fun today. Angel Guzman has his glove on his head, is juggling, and is singing to PA music. Let's hope it means a win!
  • The Cubs have an 0-19 streak with runners in scoring position going.
  • Rich Harden has been scratched from his AAA rehab start today for undisclosed reasons according to Paul Sullivan. Not good news!
  • The Cubs lost 4-3 to the Reds in extras last night.

Let's go get a win to take 2 out of 3 today! We need it!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

June 6 Notes

  • Jake Fox is batting .429. Lou said, "We have to make a decision (about Fox) here in the next or so with some people coming off the DL."
  • Aaron Miles will come off the DL next week most likely. He's going to AAA Iowa for minor league rehab.
  • Carlos Zambrano said after his 100th win yesterday that he will retire at the end of his current contract.
  • The Cubs have the 3rd worth Batting Average with runners in scoring position in the NL.
  • Rich Harden will make a rehab start for AAA tomorrow.
  • Aramis Ramirez is doing baseball activities and is expected to come of the DL in early July.
  • Derrek Lee and Lou Piniella believe that Sammy Sosa belongs in the Hall of Fame.

Cubbie Birthdays:

Brooks Kieschnick (37)

Bob Talbot (82)

This Date in Cubs History:

2003- Insisting the corked bat, designed to put on home run displays during batting practice, was accidentally used in the Devil Rays' game, Cubs' slugger Sammy Sosa is suspended for eight games by major League baseball. Bob Watson, baseball's vice president of on-field operations, agreed the Chicago's outfielder use of an illegal bat was an "isolated incident," but one that still deserved a penalty.

1981- The Cubs score 4 runs in the 4th inning‚ 3 on a pinch HR from Mike Tyson‚ to knock rookie phenom Fernando Valenzuela out of the game. The Cubs are victorious over the Dodgers 11-5 at Wrigley.

Let's go get our 3rd win in a row tonight!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Game Preview: Cubs VS Braves Game 3

Thursday, June 4, 2009: Chicago Cubs VS Atlanta Braves

Game Info:
Records: Cubs 26-25, Braves 26-26
Pitching Matchup: Carlos Zambrano (3-2) VS Jair Jurrjens (5-2)
First Pitch: 6:05 CT
Stadium: Turner Field
TV: CSN Chicago, MLB Network

Series Info:
This Series: The Cubs won last night in extras to even the series. This game is the rubber match.
Season Series: The next time the 2 teams meet will be July 6-8 at Wrigley Field.
All-Time Series: Cubs 1022, Braves 844

Zambrano VS Braves Hitters:
  • Brian McCann: 5-9, 2 RBI
  • David Ross: 2-12, 2 HR, 3 RBI
  • Yunel Escobar: 0-3, BB
  • Kelly Johnson: 4-14, BB, RBI
  • Chipper Jones: 6-23, HR, 4 BB, 2 RBI
  • Greg Norton: 3-9
  • Jeff Francoeur: 4-14, 2 HR, BB, 8 RBI
  • Nate McLouth: 5-22, 6 BB, 4 RBI

Jurrjens VS Cubs Hitters: Has never faced Cubs.

Atlanta Weather:

Cubs Notes:

  • With a win today, Carlos Zambrano will become the 21st pitcher in Cubs History to win 100 games, but only the 4th in the last 50 years. The other 3: Greg Maddux, Fergie Jenkins, and Rick Reuschel.
  • Bruce Levine thinks Big Z disrespected his teammates when he missed the team flight on Monday.
  • The game went to extra-innings for the second straight night yesterday. This time the Cubs pulled it out to even the series.
  • Geovany Soto has been benched for a few days. Lou wants to see how Hill does in his place.
  • In an interview with ESPN Deportes, Sammy Sosa hinted that he is going to make a formal announcement soon that he is retiring from baseball.
  • Jon Heyman says that the Cubs are still the favorite to land Jake Peavy.
  • Heyman also mentioned in that article that Milton Bradley is looking like the worth free agent signing this offseason. Not good!
  • Some AL teams are interested in Jake Fox as a cheap DH option.

Injury Report:

  • Milton Bradley is out off the lineup again tonight, but according to Gordon Wittenmyer, the Cubs say no DL for Milton for now.
  • Bradley had an MRI on his calf yesterday. According to the Tribune, the MRI machine reportedly broke during the exam, forcing a second test to be taken. But it turned out the person being tested before him was suffering from claustrophobia. That's odd.
  • Rich Harden will throw today and then head to Iowa for a Sunday rehab start. Barring setbacks, he will return June 12 VS Min.

Minor League Report:

  • AAA Iowa Cubs: @Nashville 7:00 CT, SP: Jeff Samardzija
  • AA Tennessee Smokies: @Carolina 6:15 CT
  • Class A Daytona Cubs: @Charlotte 6:05 CT
  • Class A Peoria Chiefs: VS Beloit 7:00 CT

Last week when I went to the Cubs game, I found a great article in the program/scorecard that I got for just $1. Today, I'm going to share it with you.

Another Predictable Season, by Matt Smerge:

Like any baseball season, the Cubs' 2009 campaign has been marked by many unpredictable events. Aramis Ramirez is sidelined for at least 2 months after separating his shoulder. Ryan Theriot led the league in homers during the first half of May (tied with Albert Pujols). Ten-year minor leaguer Bobby Scales, who was called up to replace Ramirez on the roster, made the most of his first major league action, becoming the feel good story of the spring. And the sale of the Cubs still hasn't been completed. Perhaps most surprising, the Blackhawks have supplanted the Cubs and Bears as the most popular team in Chicago, if only temporarily. It may be impossible to predict the unpredictable, but that's never stopped us before. Here are our predictions for the rest of the 2009 Cubs season:

  • May 25- The Cubs beat the Pirates 9-8 in a Memorial Day thriller Scales paces the offense with yet another 4-hit game. His batting average climbs over .500.
  • June 1- Crane Kenny announces that the sale of the Cubs is almost complete. He also threatens to move the Cubs' spring training home to Idaho.
  • June 14- The Blackhawks beat the Penguins to in 56 games to claim their first Stanley Cup in 48 years. The Cubs beat the Twins 6-2 to pull even with the Brewers. Scales hits for the cycle and sells the option for the feature film depicting his life story.
  • June 18- The Cubs take 2 of 3 from the dirty White Sox. Denzel Washington is cast in the role of Scales for the movie after President Obama can't clear his schedule.
  • June 21- Milton Bradley accidentally chokes an umpire after being called out on strikes. He then claims the contact was incidental.
  • June 25- Bradley appeals his 20 game suspension.
  • June 28- The Cubs lose two of 3 to the Sox at the Cell, dropping them 4 games behind the surging Brewers. Scales meets Sox fan Mayor Daley before the game and charms him into changing his undying allegiance to the Cubs.
  • July 9- Crane Kenney announces that the sale of the Cubs is almost complete. He also threatens to move the Cubs' spring training home to the island where they shoot "Survivor".
  • July 12- The cubs sweep the Cardinals in a double header to climb to within 3 games of the division leading Brewers at the All-Star break. Ryan Theriot hits his team leading 23rd home run.
  • July 14- Crane Kenney officially changes his name to Kenney Crane after he finds out there's a new character named Crane Kenney on "The Bold and the Beautiful" who happens to be a serial rapist and embezzler. The NL loses the All-Star game 6-5 in 17 innings despite 5 RBIs for Scales, a write in All-Star.
  • July 17- Obama presents Scales with the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House. Scales charms Sox fan Obama into changing his undying allegiance to the Cubs. The Cubs beat the Nationals 11-2 later that night.
  • August 6- Kenney Crane announces the sale of the Cubs is almost complete. He also threatens to move the Cubs spring training home to the Bermuda Triangle.
  • August 16- Scales' batting average dips to .251 after a 0-72 slump. Piniella cites his charming attitude when questioned why he doesn't bench him.
  • August 27- The Cubs sweep the Nationals and move into first place. Theriot hits his 40th homer. Scales' average drops to .221. The shocking murder of Kenney Crane's head landscaper forces him to miss his weekly pedicure.
  • September 1- Kenney Crane announces that the sale of the Cubs is almost complete. He also threatens to move the Cubs' spring training ho9me to his backyard in Kenilworth. He then puts an ad on Craig's List looking for a new head landscaper.
  • September 2- Scales is finally sent down to the minor after his hitless streak reaches 153 ABs. The movie is downscales from feature film to UPN movie of the week. Denzel drops out and is replaced by Jimmy "J.J." Walker.
  • September 17- The Cubs sweep the Brewers to open up a 6 game lead. Ramirez returns to the lineup. The result of Bradley's suspension appeal is finally handed down (it is doubled).
  • September 29- The Cubs beat the Pittsburgh Pirates to clinch the NL Central. Theriot his his 60th homer hours after testing positive for high levels of Flintstone vitamins in his system.
  • October 10- The Dodgers Sweep the cubs out of the playoffs for the 2nd year in a row. Scales announces that he is running for the Illinois senate seat.
  • October 31- The sale of the cubs is finally completed. New ownership demotes Kenny Crane to groundskeeper. He is told that if he works hard he might be promoted to the job of Milton Bradley's pedicurist.

I enjoyed the article and thought it was worth sharing!

Cubbie Birthdays:

Arnold Earley (76)

Scott Servais (42)

Rick Wilkins (42)

This Date in Cubs History:

2003- Although his bat may have contained cork in yesterday's game, all five of Sammy Sosa's historic bats housed at the Hall of Fame and the76 of confiscated from his locker by major league baseball revealed no signs of tampering. X-rays and CT scans were used to clear cleared Cubs' slugger remaining lumber.

2004- Mark Prior makes his season debut for the Cubs‚ but the Cubs loses 2-1‚ to the Pirates‚ Prior goes 6 shutout innings. The Cubs hit the million mark in attendance‚ their quickest in history.

Thank You for Reading:

Yesterday's game preview was my 300th post since a started blogging about the Cubbies about 6 months ago. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my work!

Cubs Starting Lineup:

  • Soriano, LF
  • Theriot, SS
  • Kosuke, RF
  • Lee, 1B
  • Fontenot, 3B
  • Johnson, CF
  • Hill, C
  • Blanco, 2B
  • Zambrano, P

Interesting Story:

Carlos Zambrano said this to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Sun-Times: "Look, Geo is going in Lou's office... They closed the door... They're fighting... Be in the paper tomorrow."

That's all I have on this story right now, but I'll keep you posted on it.

Let's forget off the field stuff, and win this series!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Game Preview: Cubs VS Braves

Wednesday, June 3, 2009: Chicago Cubs VS Atlanta Braves

Game Info:

Records: Cubs 25-25 (4th in NL Central) VS Braves 26-25 (3rd in NL East)
Pitching Matchup: Ted Lilly (6-3) VS Derek Lowe (6-3)
First Pitch: 6:05 CT
Stadium: Turner Field
TV: CSN Chicago

Series Info:

This series: The Cubs had a 5 run lead in the 7th and Randy Wells had a no hitter going, but the Cubs found a way to lose 6-5 in Game 1 last night.
Season Series: Braves lead 1-0.
All-Time Series (Since 1900): Cubs 1021, Braves 844

Cubs Hitters VS Derek Lowe:
  • Milton Bradley: 1-9, 2 RBI, 3 BB
  • Mike Fontenot: 3-5
  • Kosuke: 1-5, BB
  • Koyie Hill: 1-6
  • Reed Johnson: 4-11, 5 RBI
  • Derrek Lee: 11-28, 2 BB, HR, 5 RBI
  • Alfonso Soriano: 13-53, 3 HR, 5 RBI
  • Ryan Theriot: 2-10
  • Ted Lilly: 0-2

Braves Hitters VS Ted Lilly:

  • Brian McCann: 1-4, RBI, BB
  • Derek Lowe: 0-2
  • Yunel Escobar: 2-6
  • Chipper Jones: 2-9, 4 BB, 2 RBI
  • Casey Kotchman: 0-3
  • Kelly Johnson: 1-4
  • Greg Norton: 1-5
  • Martin Prado: 2-4, RBI
  • Garret Anderson: 3-22, BB
  • Matt Diaz: 1-3
  • Gregor Blanco: 0-3
  • David Ross: 0-9

And there is a little more history between Ted Lilly and the Braves...

  • In 2007, Alfonso Soriano hit 3 home runs in a Cubs 9-1. The next game, Tim Hudson hit Soriano with a first-pitch fastball causing home-plate umpire Tim Tschida to issue warnings to both teams. In the final game of the series, Lilly hit Edgar Renteria in the first inning and was thrown out of the game by Jim Wolf.
  • After Greg Norton homered against Lilly in the first inning of a game in 2008, the next pitch went over the head of McCann and both benches were warned.
  • Could there be a Lilly VS Braves Part III tonight?


  • Isolated T-Storms
  • 30% chance of precip.
  • Currently 85 degrees.

Cubs Notes:

  • Carlos Zambrano skipped the team charter flight to Atlanta and arrived to the ballpark late yesterday. He did not have permission. Lou hauled the suspended pitcher into his office before last night's game to address the situation. Neither Lou nor Big Z would comment.
  • Randy Wells was 7 outs away from a no hitter yesterday, and not only did he lose the no-no, but ended up losing his first big league win. Carlos Marmol and Angel Guzman were wild, Kevin Gregg got another blown save, and Aaron Heilman gave up the game winning hit as the Cubs bullpen continues to struggle.
  • Also, Derrek Lee made a rare costly error.
  • Jim Hendry is not with the team because he is preparing for next week's first year player draft.
  • "We Believe" the movie is coming out soon! Check it out on Muskat's blog.

Injury Report:

  • Milton Bradley left last nights game with a strained right calf. The DL is a possibility according to Gordon Wittenmyer of the Sun-Times. The good news is that Reed Johnson is red hot and will get more playing time with Bradley out of the lineup.
  • Ryan Dempster, who has been bothered by a blister, will make his scheduled start on Friday in Cincinnati.
  • Alfonso Soriano's knee is not a problem. He says his slump is because he's swinging at bad pitches.
  • Rich Harden threw a 33-pitch bullpen session on Tuesday. Harden said the back pain is gone. He could return to the rotation during the Minnesota series at Wrigley June 12-14.

Minor League Report:

  • Iowa Cubs: Loss to Nashville 3-0.
  • Tennessee Smokies: VS Carolina 6:15 CT
  • Daytona Cubs: VS Charlotte 6:05 CT
  • Peoria Chiefs: VS Beloit at 7pm CT

Radio Recap:

Darren Rovell, CNBC business expert, joined Mully and Hanley on 670 the Score to break down the Cubs sale yesterday:

  • Darren thought the sale would be done by June 1.
  • The Rickets deal is going to get done, but the times are still tough.
  • You really do have to have the cash to buy a team now a days, and that makes it hard to sell a team.
  • Every teams values are going to drop if a team sells for a cheap price.

Dave Van Dyck joined the guys to talk Cubs:

  • Dave says that nobody can stop Zambrano from being Zambrano. Mully seemed to think that Lou needs to get control of the team.
  • Carlos said in Spring Training that no of this stuff would ever happen again, but if you have a temper, you have a temper.
  • What should Lou do with Reed Johnson? That question solved itself in last nights game with the injury but Van Dyck said, "I've always believed you go with your hot hand. I think they have to play Johnson while he's hot."
  • There is a need for power in the Cubs lineup. Soriano has to stay in the lineup everyday for some power.
  • Lee and Bradley have to get it going in the middle of the lineup.
  • Van Dyck gets tired of preaching that if your 3-4-5 hitters are not hitting you don't win a lot of baseball games. Milton Bradley should hit 20-25 homers.
  • Derrek Lee has to hit for average and power as a #3 hitter.
  • Dave thinks Koyie Hill should start at catcher for 3-4 days in a row. He's a good defensive catcher and his a little pop in his bat.
  • The Soto situation puzzles Van Dyck a little bit. He says that there is no solution to this problem.
  • Bradley is just suffering from the "yucks" according to Van Dyck.
  • Milton is guessing at pitches, doesn't have any confidence, and is taking a lot of called strike 3s.

This Date in Cubs History:

1978- The Braves and the Cubs tie a major league record using 14 hurlers in a single game. Each team using seven pitchers as Chicago beats Atlanta at Wrigley Field, 8-6.

2003- Slugger Sammy Sosa is ejected from the game during the first inning after he shatters his bat and the broken remains exposes cork. The Cub outfielder will be suspended by major league baseball for 8 games (will be reduced to 7) his offense.

Cubbie Birthdays:

Robert Machado (36)

Jose Molina (34)

Steve Smyth (31)

Starting Lineup:

  • Soriano, LF
  • Theriot, SS
  • Kosuke, RF
  • Lee, 1B
  • Fontenot, 3B
  • Johnson, CF
  • Hill, C
  • Blanco, 2B
  • Lilly, P

"I don't care who wins as long as it's the Cubs!"

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

June 2 Game Preview: Chicago Cubs VS Atlanta Braves

Tuesday, June 2, 2009: Chicago Cubs @ ATL

Game Info:

Records: Cubs 25-24 (4th in NL Central), Braves 25-25 (3rd in the NL East)
Pitching Matchup: Randy Wells (0-2, 1.80 ERA) VS Kenshin Kawakami (3-6, 4.73 ERA)
First Pitch: 6:05 PM CT
Stadium: Turner Field in Atlanta

Series Info:

This Series: Game 1 of 3
Season Series: Game 1 of 6
All-Time Series (since 1900): Cubs 1021, Braves 843

Kawakami VS Cubs Hitters:
Rookie, has not faced Cubs.

Wells VS Braves Hitters:
Never faced Braves.

Current Temp.- 89 degrees!
Chance of Rain- 0%

Latest Cubs Info:

  • Alfonso Soriano and Kosuke Fukudome are leading the team in fan all star voting.
  • Ted Lilly, Ryan Dempster, and trainer Mark O'Neal hosted 60 kids at Wrigley on Sunday, part of the PLAY campaign to talk about the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
  • Steve Rosenbloom of the Chicago Tribune thinks that Jim Hendry picked the wrong guy when they signed Milton Bradley last winter.
  • The Cubs are starting to shop for a power bat and a top of the rotation pitcher according to Hot Stove Cubbies.
  • The off day yesterday came at the right time for Cubs pitchers.
  • Alfonso Soriano wants to keep playing even though he has a injury to his left knee that is holding him back. We'll see if he's in there tonight.
  • Will Reed Johnson start tonight? Lou said, "Reed Johnson has been playing well, we'll see what to do, obviously he's made a statement."

Injury Report:

  • Aramis Ramirez might have to have shoulder surgery during the off season. He's working to get his strength back and hopes he won't need surgery.
  • Rich Harden will throw a side session today before the game. He hopes to do a simulated game over the weekend in Cincinnati.

Minor League Report:

  • Iowa Cubs: @Nashville at 7pm CT. Esmailin Caridad will pitch.
  • Tennessee Smokies: @Carolina at 6:15 PM CT.
  • Daytona Cubs: VS Sarasota at 6:05 CT.
  • Peoria Chiefs: VS Beloit at 7:00 CT

Radio Recap:

Todd Hollandsworth talked about the Cubs on Waddle and Silvy on ESPN 1000 yesterday:

  • Todd said that going into the weekend series, this was a good measuring stick for the Cubs going against a similar team in the Dodgers, who are very good.
  • The Dodgers get it done by stealing bases, being creative, hitting behind runners, and hitting in front of runners.
  • LA is without Manny Ramirez as the Cubs are without Aramis Ramirez.
  • Hollandsworth doesn't think you can take anything from this series.
  • Todd has heard a lot of guys on the team saying "When we get this guy back we're going to be better." "When we get that guy back we're going to be better." The Cubs need to take responsibility and lead the team out of this slump, instead of looking for people to come back according to Silvy and Todd.
  • The one thing that this team is lacking is consistency.
  • He points out that "championship caliber teams weather the storm when they lose somebody."
  • Do the Cubs have the pieces to do it? Todd thinks so, but he wonders when the run is going to come.
  • Derrek Lee has lost some of his power since the wrist injury. Todd doesn't think Derrek is a guy who carries a team. He is suffering from inconsistency.
  • The Cubs had a good matchup in there favor on Sunday coming off a big win Saturday. Hollandsworth says that Sunday's loss shows this teams "vulnerability".

Bruce Levine also joined Waddle and Silvy yesterday:

  • The problem with the Cubs is run production.
  • Lee and Bradley don't have that power stroke any more. Where is the run production going to come from?
  • Bruce says that guys like Bobby Scales and Jake Fox are not the answers to this team winning the division.
  • Geovany Soto needs to produce.
  • People in LA are asking the same questions about Martin as the Cubs are about Soto.
  • Jim Hendry can make trades all day long, but he cannot add money.
  • Nobody knows at this point when the sale is going to be done. Now we are not even sure the Rickets Family are going to be the buyers of the team.
  • Levine agrees with Tom and Mark that Soriano could take a few games off with his struggling knee and Kosuke and Johnson have been hitting well.
  • Lou hesitates to sit Alfonso down because he needs run production.

Cubbie Birthdays:

Lee Gregory (71)

Steve Rain (34)

This Date in Cubs History:

2003- The Cubs edge the Devil Ray‚ 3-2‚ but the headline news is Sammy. Sosa is ejected from the game in the 1st inning after apparently driving in a run with a broken-bat ground out. Inspection of the bat reveals it to have cork inside and the run is disallowed.

2001- The red-hot Cubs push their winning streak to 12 games‚ beating Milwaukee‚ 10-4. Matt Stairs hits a 3-run homer‚ while Sosa and Rondell White add 2-run shots‚ all off Paul Rigdon. Frank Tapani is the winning pitcher. The streak is the longest by the Cubbies since they won 15 in 1936. The streak ends tomorrow.

2000- The Cubs defeat the Tigers‚ 2-0‚ as Rick Aguilera picks up the 300th save of his career.

1961- The Cubs Ernie Banks ties a ML record with 3 run-scoring sacrifice flies in one game. Chicago beats the Reds 7-6.

Cubs Starting Lineup:

  • 1. Soriano, LF
  • 2. Theriot, SS
  • 3. Kosuke, CF
  • 4. Lee, 1B
  • 5. Bradley, RF
  • 6. Fontenot, 3B
  • 7. Soto, C
  • 8. Blanco, 2B
  • 9. Wells, P

"I don't care who wins... as long as it's the Cubs!"

Monday, June 1, 2009

June 1 Off Day Notes: Minor Leagues, Former Cubs, and More!

Let's start with our full minor league report.

The Iowa Cubs are 26-26, 3rd in the PCL North. Here are the pitchers stats:
  • Mitch Atkins: 2-7, 8.38 ERA
  • Esmalin Caridad: 3-5, 4.56 ERA
  • J.R. Mathes: 7-3, 2.89 ERA
  • Jeff Samardzija: 2-1, 4.04 ERA
  • Kevin Hart: 0-3, 3.93 ERA
  • Greg Reinhard: 1-1, 3.73 ERA
  • Jeff Stevens: 0-2, 1.80 ERA
  • Vince Perkins: 4-0, 3.13 ERA
  • Jesse Estrada: 1-1, 10.50 ERA
  • Jayson Ruhlman: 0-0, 8.03 ERA
  • Chad Fox: 1-0, 1.59 ERA
  • Justin Berg: 1-1, 4.66 ERA
  • Blake Parker: 0-0, 1.04 ERA
  • Neal Cotts: 2.1 IP, 1 ER

And the Hitters:

  • Chris Robinson: .384 AVG, 25 RBIs
  • Brad Snyder: .319 AVG, 12 HR, 35 RBIs
  • Luis Rivas: .281 AVG, 1 HR, 3 RBI
  • Doug Deeds: .273 AVG, 3 HR, 14 RBI
  • Matt Camp:.267 AVG, 2 HR, 16 RBI
  • So Taguchi: .250 AVG, 4 RBI
  • Sam Fuld: .249 AVG, 11 RBI
  • David Macias: .240 AVG
  • Kyle Reynolds: .233 AVG, 2 RBI
  • Nate Spears: .209 AVG, 12 RBI
  • John-Ford Griffin:.194 AVG, 6 RBI
  • Steve Clevenger: .182 AVG, 2 RBI
  • Matt Matulia: .162 AVG, 1 HR, 2 RBI
  • Mark Johnson: .156 AVG, 3 RBI

The AA Tennessee Smokies are 21-30, 4th in SOU, 9 games back.

The pitchers stats:

  • Jay Jackson: 3-3, 3.35 ERA
  • Casey Coleman: 4-2, 3.31 ERA
  • Casey Lambert: 3-3, 3.28 ERA
  • Hung-Wen Chen: 2-4, 4.87 ERA
  • James Russell: 2-3, 5.11 ERA
  • Alex Maestri: 1-1, 2.81 ERA
  • Marcos Mateo: 1-3, 5.40 ERA
  • Jeremy Papelbon: 0-3, 4.50 ERA
  • Brian Schitter: 0-3, 5.40 ERA
  • John Gaub: 2-1, 3.50 ERA
  • Todd Blackford: 1-1, 7.88 ERA
  • Blake Parker: 1.46 ERA
  • David Cales: 10.50 ERA
  • Vince Perkins: 1-0, 0 ER allowed in 11.1 IP

The Hitters:

  • Steve Clevenger: .364 AVG, 1 HR, 10 RBI
  • Blake Lalli: .350 AVG, 2 HR, 15 RBI
  • Darwin Barney: .325 AVG, 1 HR, 17 RBI
  • Matt Camp: .298 AVG, 5 RBI
  • Marquez Smith: .288 AVG, 3 HR, 14 RBI
  • Tony Thomas: .283 AVG, 8 HR, 19 RBI
  • Ty Wright: .272 AVG, 2 HR, 20 RBI
  • Russ Canzler: .263 AVG, 2 HR, 11 RBI
  • James Adduci: .261 AVG, 1 HR, 17 RBI
  • Welington Castillo: .210 AVG, 5 HR, 12 RBI
  • Brandon Guyer: .185 AVG, 1 HR, 11 RBI
  • Jonathan Mota: .175 AVG, 7 RBI
  • Kyle Reynolds: .148 AVG, 1 HR, 3 RBI

On our off day next week, I'll update the Class A teams, Daytona and Peoria.

Former Cubs Updates:

  • Mark DeRosa (CLE): .266 AVG, 8 HR, 33 RBI
  • Kerry Wood (CLE): 2-2, 6.00 ERA, 8 SV
  • Felix Pie (BAL): .195 AVG, 2 HR, 4 RBI
  • Rich Hill (BAL): 1-0, 6.14 ERA, 14.2 IP
  • Ronny Cedeno (SEA): .173 AVG, 2 HR, 5 RBI
  • Jason Marquis (COL): 7-3, 3.93 ERA, 68.2 IP
  • Henry Blanco (SD): .172 AVG, 3 HR, 6 RBI
  • Bobby Howry (SF): 0-2, 3.79 ERA
  • Michael Wuertz (OAK): 2-1, 2.59 ERA
  • Chad Gaudin (SD): 2-3, 4.76 ERA
  • Luis Vizcaino (CLE): 1-2, 2.84 ERA

NL Central Standings:

  • 1. Milwaukee: 30-20
  • 2. St. Louis: 1 GB
  • 3. Cin: 3.5 GB
  • 4. Cubs: 4.5 GB
  • 5. PIT: 8 GB
  • 6. HOU: 9 GB

Cubbie Birthdays:

Randy Hundley (67)

Carlos Zambrano (28)

Happy Birthday Big Z!

This Date in Cubs History:

2003- The U.S. House votes 372-0 to congratulate the Chicago Cubs Sammy Sosa on his 500th home run and praise him as a role model. There will be a ceremony on the 5th is to present him with a copy of the House resolution.

2001- The Cubs sign Korean high school P Jae Kuk Ryu. He turned 18 two days ago.

You can email me anytime it's cubsblogmailbag@aol.com.

Cubs and Braves, Game 1 of 3 tomorrow at 6:05 CT in Atlanta.

Don't forget to read my Cubs First 2 months Recaps (click link or scroll down on blog)

Also, vote on our poll on the right sidebar!

I'll keep you posted!

April and May in Review

Well, we've played 2 month of baseball. There are only 4 months left in the regular season. In April and May you hear people say, "Oh, it's early." Once the calendar flips to June it's no longer early. It's time for the Cubs to start taking care of business.

The Cubs are 25-24, 4.5 games off the pace in the NL Central. A year ago, the Cubs were never more than 2.5 games out of first, and that was on May 7. Let's take a look at where the Cubs were after the first 2 months in recent years:

2008: 35-21
2007: 22-29
2006: 20-32
2005: 26-24

So the Cubs have put themselves in a position where they really need a strong month of June. Here are some of the Cubs stats and splits for the first 2 months:

Days in first: 5, 10 counting all days of season including off days
Farthest Behind: 5 games, May 25
Most Games Over .500: 7, May 16
Most Games Under .500: 1, May 25
Longest Winning Streak: 5, May 10-16
Longest Losing Streak: 8, May 17-25
Most Run Allowed: 12 (May 9)
Most Runs Scored: 11 (Apr. 8, 28, and May 14)
Times Shutout by Opponent: 4
Times Opponent Shutout: 2

Home: 16-10
Road: 9-14
April: 10-11
May: 15-13
9-inning games: 22-22
Extra Innings: 1-2
Shortened: 2-0
One-Run Games: 4-7
Blowouts(5+ runs): 8-8
Most Wins Against: Houston (5)
Most Losses to: STL (6)

My Awards:
April MVP- Kosuke Fukudome hit .338 with 4 HR and 15 RBIs.
May MVP- Ryan Theriot hit .273 with 5 HRs and 15 RBIs.
April Pitcher of the Month- Rich Harden was 2-1 with a 3.86 ERA.
May Pitcher of the Month- Randy Wells had a 1.80 ERA in 4 starts.
April Defensive Play of the Month- Reed Johnson (Click to see)
May Defensive Play of the Month- Ryan Freel (Second One)

Cubs Team Ranks in Hitting Categories (Going into play on May 30):
Runs: 209 (12th in NL, 22nd in MLB)
Hits: 389 (14th in NL, 27th in MLB)
HR: 53 (4th in NL, 11th in MLB)
TB: 627 (13th in NL, 24th in MLB)
RBI: 198 (11th in NL, 21st in MLB)
BA: .249 (11th in NL, 24th in MLB)
OBP: .328 (12th in NL, 21st in MLB)

Cubs Team Ranks in Pitching Categories (As of today):

ERA: 4.28 (9th in NL, 12th In MLB)
SHO: 2 (T-10th in NL, T-17th in MLB)
SV: 11 (10th in NL, T-17th in MLB)
Hits allowed: 391 (Fewest in NL!, Fewest in MLB!!)
Runs Allowed: 213 (6th fewest in NL, 7th fewest in MLB)
HR Allowed: 54 (5th most in NL, 12th most in MLB)
BB Allowed: 190 (7th most in NL, 10th most in MLB)
SO: 394 (2nd most in NL, 2nd most in MLB)

Cubs Team Leaders:
Batting Average- Kosuke (.309, 20th best in NL)
HR- Soriano (12, 8th in NL)
RBIs- Soriano (25, 39th in NL)
Runs- Soriano (36, 6th in NL)
Hits- Theriot (53, 20th in NL)
SB- Theriot (7, 17th in NL)
2B- Soriano (11, 28th in NL)
3B- Theriot (2, 12th in NL)
SLG- Kosuke (.507, 23rd in NL)

Injuries in First 2 months:
  • Derrek Lee (neck)
  • Alfonso Soriano (knee)
  • Ryan Dempster (blisters)
  • Rich Harden (back)
  • Milton Bradley (groin)
  • Geovany Soto (shoulder)
  • Carlos Zambrano (hamstring)
  • Chad Fox (arm)
  • Ryan Freel (hamstring)
  • Aaron Miles (shoulder)
  • Aramis Ramirez (Shoulder)


  • Zambrano (6 games)
  • Bradley (1 game)


  • Luis Vizcaino DFA'd later signed with CLE. (4/23)
  • Jeff Samardzija recalled from AAA (4/23)
  • Bobby Scales called up from AAA (5/4)
  • Chad Fox called up from AAA, Samardzija optioned down (5/6)
  • Joey Gathright outrighted to AAA, then traded to Baltimore from Ryan Freel. Randy Wells recalled from AAA Iowa (5/8)
  • Jose Ascaino recalled from AAA (5/10)
  • Andres Blanco, Jason Waddell, and Jake Fox called up from AAA. Neal Cotts and Bobby Scales sent to AAA. (5/27)
  • Bobby Scales recalled from AAA (5/28)
Team Strengths:
  • Young Players
  • Starting Rotation
  • Late Relief

Team Weaknesses:

  • Middle Relief
  • Injuries
  • Bottom of the Order

Let's hope the Cubs improve on those weaknesses as we head into the month of June! From now on, I will be doing a month recap like this at the end of each month.

Off day notes later!