Cubs Third Inning Rout Paves The Way To Series Win.

August 6, 2008

The Cubs really flexed their muscles today at the plate with a offensive show,and a offensive explosion in the third inning scoring 8 runs.

Mark Derosa got the scoring going early who doubled in the second inning scoring Jim Edmonds,Im sure at the time Derosa didn’t know what was about to happen in the next inning.

Ryan Theriot singled,Aramis Ramirez and Jim Edmonds both walked to juice the bases for Mark Derosa in the third who launched a grand slam followed by Kosuke Fukudome who doubled,Then Geovany Soto was intentionally walked ,Next up was starting pitcher Jason Marquis who doubled to deep right field scoring Fukudome.

Then in steps Soriano who was the hero yesterday and didnt wait long to send the Cub fans into a frenzy again launching a three run shot,All though it was Derosa today that got the curtain-call,All eight runs came with two outs making the score 9-4 Cubs.

Then the Cubs didnt wait long to tack on two more runs,the very next inning Fukudome singled in D.Lee followed by Soto who hit a sacrafice fly scoring Ramirez.

This one was essentially over after three, with Mark DeRosa slugging a grand slam and Alfonso Soriano socking a three-run shot in the inning to back starter Jason Marquis, who tossed 6 1/3 solid frames to win for the first time since June 21.

Nobody in today’s Cub lineup had more then 2 hits,by looking at the score you would think just the opposite same could be said for hits,Looking at the score would lead you to believe the cubs banged out 15 to 20 hits,But they had as many hits as they did runs which was 11,Today was a case of Timely hitting and clutch hitting with the majority of runs being scored with two outs.

All though Mark Derosa was the man of the day today going 2-3 with a double and a grand slam along with 5 R.B.I.’s,Soriano continues to stay red hot as he went 2-5 with a 3 run homer giving him 3 R.B.I’s on the day.

The Cubs took the series with today’s 11-4 win over the Astros putting the Cubs at 69-46 and pushing the Astros back to 54-59,The Cubs stay 5 games ahead of the brewers as the brew crew defeated the Reds today 6-3.Tomorrow is a off day and a well- deserved one for this Cub team who has now won 9 out of their last 11 games.

After tomorrows off-day The St.Louis Cardinals come in for a big three game weekend series at Wrigley field.We will have a series preview posted sometime tomorrow.

One quick note: Cubs shortstop Ryan Theriot is day-to-day after bruising his left foot on a foul ball which caused him to leave today’s game in the fifth inning.


Cubs Drop The Stros With Late Inning Heroics.

August 5, 2008

Alfonso Soriano  showed up to play the hero today as thats been kinda the theme this year for the Cubs,what makes this years Cub team so different then other years? Everybody contributes and their seems to be a different player with the winning hit in a lot of Cub victory’s this year. The Cubs had reason to celebrate after last nights rainy mess of a  game that ended up being called in the 8th inning,The game was delayed twice by violent storms and there seemed to be no end to the storm anytime soon so it was easy to understand why it was called.

The drama today started when Soriano hit a tie breaking, three-run homer in the seventh inning and Chicago rallied after blowing a five-run lead sending the packed stadium into a frenzy prompting a well-deserved curtain-call from the Cubs slugging left-fielder.

Soriano’s 20th homer highlighted a five-run burst and sent the NL Central-leading Cubs to their eighth win in 10 games.

Besides the dramatic homer by Soriano, the Cubs also got a boost by the return of Kerry Wood. The All-Star closer got a loud ovation and then pitched a scoreless eighth after missing three weeks with a blister on his right index finger.

Wood had said a week ago it was the damnedest thing he had ever seen from a blister and obviously was very frustrated at the time as his blister just seemed to keep getting worse,at one point the blister was like a open wound,according to wood they had tried everything,well almost everything,Wood did not try the “mosies alou approach” for those of you cub fans that are familiar with that saying i won’t get into specifics about the “mosies alou approach” cause its really not proper for all readers.

Soriano drove in four runs. The Astros, who came back from a 6-1 deficit to take the lead, had their four-game winning streak stopped.

Few other game notes:D. Lee showed some signs today that he may be breaking out of his mini-slump going 4-5 with a double,1 R.B.I. and scored twice,he looked very patient at the plate and hit the ball hard all day long.

Mark Derosa continues to be “MR super -sub” on defense and continues to remain very consistent at the plate,Today he went 3-5 with a double and 3R.B.I.’S along with 1 run scored.

In all the Cubs banged out 15 hits and shockingly left 19 men on base but still managed  to score 11 runs to send the Astros to the loss and back to 4 games under .500 and are currently 13 games back of the division leading Cubs who are 22 games over .500 and 5 games ahead of the second place Brewers.

Cubs Sweep Brewers – Take Control of Central

July 31, 2008

Five days ago the Milwaukee Brewers caught the Cubs atop the NL Central. Five days ago might as well be five weeks ago when the Brewers were 5.5 out.

No one quite knows what happened to the “hottest” team since the All Star Break. The Brewers were riding a 8-2 record coming into the Cubs series…They were coming home…all things pointed to a hotly contested series that clearly favored the Brewers with CC Sabathia and Ben Sheets pitching the first two games of the series. Instead the Cubs romped through the four game set winning all four games while scoring 31 runs to the Brewers 11.

Today was the biggest outbreak of the series as the Cubs erupted for 11 runs led by Jim Edmonds two HRs including a grand slam to rack up five RBIs. Soriano and Fukudome added long balls as well. 

Rich Harden finally got some much deserved run support in notching his first victory since his trade from Oakland. Nine more strikeouts bring his four game total to 39. He has yet to allow more than one run in any of his starts since coming over to the Cubs.

Soriano blistered the Brewers pitching in this series going 7-16. Since coming off of the DL the Cubs have gone 7-2 while “Sori” has gone 12-35, 2HRs, and 8 RBIs. He has been a clear reason that the Cubs have been able to return to their offensive ways. Inserting him back into his customary spot at leadoff and in LF and getting everyone back into their normal routine has been just what the team has needed.

Next up for the Cubs is a three game set with the remains of the Pittsburgh Pirates, who in the last week has traded away Xaivier Nady, Jason Bay, and Damaso Marte. Easy on paper – but thats why they play the games. It is the first series of a nine game home stand and a stretch in which the Cubs play 22 of their next 31 at home.

Check back later for Out of the Box Game Notes and tomorrow for Pirates previews.

Cubs Top CC, Brewers

July 29, 2008

CC Sabathia likes to get ahead of hitters by throwing first pitch fastballs. Alfonso Soraino likes to get ahead of pitchers by swinging at first pitch fastballs. CC + Soriano = 2B, HR, RBI.

In this highly anticipated match up of NL leading teams, the clear edge was given to the Brewers and CC Sabathia who had won 8 of 10 since the All Star Break while the Cubs were floundering in mediocrity. The Brewers catching the Cubs in the standings on Saturdy has seemed to serve as a wake up call for the Cubs bats as evidneced by the two straight games of offensive production.

Derek Lee had meaningful hits finally. His double in the ninth that plated Soriano provided the winning run, Mark DeRosa batted in Mike Fontenot for the insurance run to cap a 6-4 victory.

CC Sabathia as dominant as he had been lately was destined for a let down at some point in the second half. It came at the worst possible time for the Brewers who desperately wanted to set the tone in this series with a opening win at home. He didn’t pitch badly, only giving up three earned runs, but the Cubs batters made him work hard as he threw 124 pitches before being pulled in the seventh.

Ted Lilly had it going early as he took a two hit shutout into the sixth inning, but two mistake pitches later -the game was tied and Lilly was gone. JJ Hardy took Lilly deep and then the showboating Ryan Braun did the same thing.

We are wondering aloud if the Cubs took notice of Braun’s curtain call after tying the game…Not a go ahead home run, not a insurance run producing three run blast in the bottom of the eighth…just a game TYING HR in the bottom of the sixth. This is the second time in a week that Braun has “shown up” teams after hitting a HR (see Cardinals slow walk out of the batters box during a game last week). We are all for a guy taking a curtain call in the right situation, but a division / playoff race game TYING HR is not the time nor the place for a curtain call…We will be sure to keep our eyes on this one if the Cubs get a big lead and Braun comes up late. Dude needs to be knocked down…and frankly I am suprised no one has taken him aside and told him how much of a jackass he is being, and that he can expect a beaning if he keeps it up.

Check back later for tonights game two preview…Zambrano v. Sheets….should be a great game to watch.

Wrigley Never Seemed So Far Away

July 23, 2008

Things have gotten so bad for the Cubs, that while watching this game and the lack of offense, I just kept thinking how badly I wanted to beat that little kid behind home plate with the D-Backs towel who sat there and waved that towel the whole effing game. When he wasnt waving the towel he was waving his arms…man that was annoying.

Another road loss tonight….still no offense. The Cubs need a home game in the worse way. As of press time, the Cubs are a little more than 42 hours away from the Marlins series at Wrigley. That puts the Cubs at 1-4 since the All Star Break while Milwaukee hasnt lost. Lead in NL Central is down to one game.

Hopefully Soriano back in the lineup tomorrow helps remedy some things and help the team avoid the sweep.

I will post recap links when they become available.