View From The Bleachers

Talking Cubs Baseball Since 2003



August 2011



Game 134 – Brewing Up A Sweep

Written by , Posted in General

Cubs 2, Brewers 3

Box Score / Highlights

What Went Right

  • Casey Coleman – good outing, rather unexpected too; 7 IPs, 3ERs, 93 pitches. He should get another 5 or 6 starts before this season comes to a close. If he can string together several appearances like today, he should find himself fighting for a backend position next spring (which pretty much tells you all you need to know about your 2012 Cubs – Casey Coleman could easily be our fifth starter).

What Went Wrong

  • Zach Greinke – he’s just a great pitcher. The Brewers are better than the Cubs, Greinke is better than any pitcher we have. The next GM, whoever it is, needs to make starting pitching the priority.
  • Mike Quade – do you ever have déjà vu? Didn’t you just ask me that? So let me get this straight, we’re 20 games below .500; it’s the first inning against a great pitcher and you’re going to get the home plate umpire angry at you and your team? I’m all for arguing bad calls, but there is wisdom in keeping your mouth shut – especially in the first inning. Or maybe he’s just ultra-patriotic and couldn’t risk missing the OVLL break all those Japanese hearts.
  • 5th inning embarrassment – in a 1-0 game Zach Greinke blistered a line drive single to right field. Ok, whatever, pitchers get lucky sometime. For some inexplicable reason we elected to ignore his presence on the basepaths so he swiped second base. As everyone was having a good chuckle about it, Corey Hart battered the next strike into the LF stands. Hahaha, so funny…we allowed the pitcher to derail the inning – hilarious.

Little League World Series

August 28, 2011 – a date that will live in infamy (at least for VFTB’s own Doc Raker). The kids from the Ocean View Little League vanquished the Japanese with a thrilling walk-off win. If you’re familiar with the World War II era bandleader Spike Jones, you’ll know the overtly racist song that I dug out of my iTunes and played a few times after the OV Little League sank the Rising Sun. U-S-A! U-S-A!

The Takeaway

I’ll be in attendance on Monday night in San Franicsco – it’s the first Cubs game for my three-week old son. The Cubs are facing Tim Lincecum in the first of a three game set; this has Quade declaring that Blake DeWitt will be in the lineup. DeWitt has a total of 7 starts since July 1st, and only one in the last 20 days. He’s batting less than .230 since July 1. But he boasts an 8-for-18 history against the two-time Cy Young award winner. Fine, put him in the lineup – but can we please not have him hitting thirdor playing left field!


Stars of the Game
Base on Win Probability Added (WPA)

1st Star – Zach Greinke (.421 WPA)

2nd Star – Corey Hart (.200 WPA)

3rd Star – Ryan Braun (.145 WPA)

  • Buddy

    To be fair to Quade, that pitch was horrible.

  • Jedi

    It was a horrible pitch, and the HP ump was consistent in giving it to them all day long.

  • Buddy

    I didn’t get to watch the entire game, so I only saw the one ankle-high strike.

  • Jedi

    It continued the whole game, Reed Johnson was flummoxed when it was called as a strike in the ninth…apparently he was catnapping during Aramis’ first inning at-bat.


    The Cubs lost? I was too busy watching the LLWS, saving lives, and yelling at punk kids today. Not necessarily in that order. I wonder if Roger Clemens was able to find an open dry cleaners today.

  • Kris

    For some inexplicable reason I no longer can access VFTB from my work computer. Since I try to stay off the computer at home after being on it 8+ hours a day for work, I’ve pretty much disappeared from here lately. How sad is it that in these three weeks the only things I’ve really wanted to post about were Zambrano (so long, I hope!) and Hendry?! Other than that, not being able to get to the site is helping me forget this miserable season.

  • Doc Raker

    Huntington Beach is partying today! OVLL Wins it all. The top of the 6th gave me a heart attack. Throwing the kid out at 3b, the second baseman throwing a hundred miles an hour from 2 feet away to get the out at first. Heart stopping. Good to see Pratto come up big for the game winning hit, his swing has always been admired around OVLL. We did a pitching lesson with Coach Buckles who has coached all these kids also. I said Coach, teach my son the cutter these kids are throwing. Hagen Danner’s (OVLL leader) siblings showed up to talk to Coach Buckles while we were there and we had a great time talking OVLL baseball and baseball in general. Thanks for all the VFTB support during OVLL’s run in the LLWS.

  • Lizzie

    @Kris, miss you, but I definitely get it.
    @Doc, congratulations! We watch the LLWS every year but it made it extra special this year to have some connection, albeit small. I may have mentioned I grew up not far from Williamsport and in fact my parents still live in the area so we may have to put that on next year’s bucket list. Maybe we’ll be cheering on your boy and having Dinner with Doc!! 🙂

  • Buddy

    Congrats Doc!

  • Doc Raker

    Save the date- Dinner with Doc- Williamsport 2012

  • CurlystoogeIU

    Jedi, I’ll be looking for you. My first Cubs game in nearly 2 years. When I told my ol’ man I was going to the game he quickly proclaimed that I don’t wear any paraphernalia in fear of getting shanked or shot. Forget that, my Soto jersey will be in full view.

    Hope your son has a good first Cubs game and maybe they can pull one off on Tim…

  • Noah

    Not to be too nit picky, but I don’t believe you used the word. I get the reference to the Pearl Harbor speech, but didn’t OVLL win? And infamy is bad. Like it’s famous because it’s terrible. So for Doc it’s not infamy, because the team he wanted to win did in fact win. So it’s more a day that will live in the opposite of infamy.

  • Noah

    Wow, I needed to proof that post better. I was saying the word “infamy” didn’t appear to be used correctly. Whoops!

  • Seymour Butts

    Well you need to look at it from the point of view of the Japanese…. first the Tsunami, now this.

  • In all fairness Raker, the CA boys remain tied with the MT kids… my hat goes off to them all for sure.

  • Doc Raker

    Pitching depth jswanson, MT stud pitcher could hold them down once but past the ace it gets tough to hold them down. The OVLL boys scored big on anyone who wasn’t a stud ace. In contrast OV had 3 visible stud aces. My hats off to all the boys and all the teams. The belief for us has been knowing we were so deep so I am glad it worked out that way. Last year we beat the Hawaii ( eventual US Champs) once in the Regionals and then lost to them in the Championship Regional game a few days later so I know what it is like jswanson. Had we beat HI the second time we would have went to Williamsport last year too. All those kids on all those teams play with such big smiles it is fun to watch win or lose.

  • Agreed 100% Doc. Bonus points awarded to the tiny kid from Billings. He looked like he was 5 y/o…sort of like the Montana Little League version of our beloved soft hitting Tony Campana. Imagine the stories they are telling at school right now…

  • Doc Raker

    Stories for the rest of their lives. We had a welcoming rally at the little league park last night. These kids get bused in from the airport with a police escort, big crowds cheering, people who don’t even have kids who play in the league show up to throw confetti at them. Nick Pratto and Hagen Danner did not come home yet, they drove from Williamsport to Cooperstown to play in a tournament with their travel team. Every where they stopped along the way a crowd would gather like they were Michael Jordan, people are honking there horns on the freeway as they drive. Fun stuff.

  • Doc Raker

    MT little 2b man played some great D, like he told his mom, “hard to hit when they throw faster than my weight.” Quote of the tournament as Musburger and Hershiers pointed out over and over again.