(AP Photo/Jerry Lai)

Last night we saw Alfonso Soriano get hit in the hand with the diagnosis coming back positive for a broken hand. The estimate for his time on the shelf was set at six weeks and so some questions arose in my mind.

  1. With Soriano out, is it finally time to call up Matt Murton and give him a chance? I think now is the time. Six weeks puts us right up to the trade deadline. Giving Murton a chance to show his stuff will allow the Cubs to showcase him if he’s the player everyone believes he is. Everyone makes the statement that the reason he’s not on the roster right now is due to his weak defense in the outfield. If that’s the honest reason for not playing him consistently in left field, then you can’t make Mark DeRosa your every day outfielder. DeRosa is just as weak in his outfield defense as Murton. So I ask you. What needs to be done in with this roster spot? Is it Murton? Is it Pie? Is it Patterson? Is it someone else?
  2. Ryan Dempster rocked the house yesterday and is quietly punching all of his critics in the mouth with each and every start he makes. He got outs early in the inning, kept guys off base and was able to go the distance as a result. These are the kind of starts you need from your top of the rotation guys to ease the tension on that bullpen. The way Demp is going, I see no reason why he can’t represent the Cubs at Yankee Stadium in July. My question then is: Has Dempster finally won you over or are you still a doubter. I have completely bought into his success. The only thing I worry about is his durability toward the end of the year due to the fact that he’s still getting used to starting. I worry that as the innings reach the 150+ mark that his arm will begin to tire. I hope I’m wrong.
  3. I’ve seen lots of talk going around the internet, and not just on fan blogs, that the Cubs are going to be major players in the Indians decide to move C. C. Sabathia. Sabathia is fresh off a Cy Young year and hasn’t been as sharp so far. Still, you have to give the guy the props for being one of the most durable and consistently tough starters to face. Obviously it’s impossible to comment on whether or not the trade would be good without any incling of what it would look like from the farm system point of view, but if you ask me if I’d want Sabathia for the run I’d have to say, yes. If the price is right, make the deal. My question to you is this: Do the Cubs need to go out and get a starter to be able to win or can they win it with what we have in house?

Scouting Today’s Starting Pitchers
Tim Hudson saw his eighth win of the season vanish because of a ninth-inning error in the Braves’ 4-3 loss on Friday night to the Phillies. Hudson pitched 7 2/3 strong innings, allowing one run on five hits, and was in line for the victory until an error with two outs in the ninth. Hudson walked four (one shy of his season high) and struck out three. On a hot and humid night, Hudson said he nearly ran out of gas and decided it would be best if he was taken out with two outs in the eighth and a lefty at the plate. The only run he gave up Friday came on an RBI groundout. He has pitched at least six innings in each of his past four starts.
  • A sound technician who makes excellent adjustments. Uses all his pitches and has a plan out there. A workhorse.
  • Has lost a little of his strikeout dominance over the years. Can sometimes overthink when things go wrong.
  • Ace-level top-of-rotation starter.
  • 1-1, 2.43 in last 29.2 IP
Carlos Zambrano – The Cubs tweaked the rotation to keep Zambrano on five days rest, and moved him up. But hide the Gatorade coolers. Zambrano lost the game and his temper in his last start against the Dodgers. He had a 3-2 lead going into the seventh, and the Dodgers scored on a throwing error, a RBI single by Russell Martin and a three-run homer by Matt Kemp. Then he kicked and tossed the coolers in the visitor’s dugout. For the game, Zambrano gave up seven runs on 13 hits over 6 2/3 innings, striking out six. Manager Lou Piniella says he doesn’t mind the emotion, as long as nobody gets hurt. Zambrano could’ve blamed his teammates, but blamed himself.
All Scouting Info taken from MLB.com and TSN.ca

News & Notes

  • Blake Lalli hit 2 extra-base hits
  • Dae-Eun Rhee allowed 1 hit in 4 innings pitched
  • Esmailin Caridad allowed one run in 5 innings pitched
  • Tony Thomas was 1-for-2 with 3 walks
  • Rich Hill struck out 6 batters and allowed 4 runs in 4 innings pitched

Got a player you’d like to see added to the player tracker? Drop us a line in the comments

Organizational Roundup

Citizen Kane divx

(AAA) – Iowa Cubs – Lost vs. Memphis (2-5)

(AA) – Tennessee Smokies – Lost vs. Mississippi (2-5)

(High A) – Daytona Cubs – Won vs. Dunedin (10-6)

(A) – Peoria Chiefs – Lost vs. Quad Cities (3-7) & Won (2-1)

(SS) – Boise Hawks open their season June 17th

(RK) – Arizona Cubs open their season June 22nd

(RK) – Dominican Summer League Cubs – No Game

View the full organizational report courtesy of First Inning here.

Peaceful Warrior full

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Joe Aiello is the founder of View From the Bleachers and one of the lead writers as well as host of VFTB Radio. Growing up in Chicago, he fondly remembers attending games in the bleachers before that was the popular thing to do. Currently Joe resides in North Carolina with his wife and three kids. Connect with Joe via Twitter / Facebook / E-mail