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April 2012

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COMMENTS

Game 5 Recap: Rough Debut for Maholm

Written by , Posted in General

Brewers 7 @ Cubs 4

Box Score / Highlights / Condensed Game

Paul Maholm made his Cubs debut in less than spectacular fashion by coughing up five runs in the first inning to the visiting Brewers on a cold, 40 degree night at Wrigley. The Cubs would try to make a game of it but couldn’t close the gap in a 7-4 loss.

The Good

  • The Cubs put together a rally in the third inning, scoring three runs on three hits, a walk, and a sac fly by Jeff Baker.
  • Alfonso Soriano continued his hot start with two hits including a bases loaded single that scored two. He even made another nice play or two in left field.
  • David DeJesus was the only other Cubs with two hits and got on base a third time with a walk. Starlin Castro doubled and walked and Geovany Soto hit his first homer of the year.
  • On the pitching side, Rodrigo Lopez contributed two hitless innings and Lendy Castillo finished the game with a scoreless 9th.

The Bad

  • Marlon Byrd went 0-3 and is off to a rough 1-17 start to the 2012 season.
  • Ian Stewart and Jeff Baker also went hitless in the game leaving the 5-8 hitters a combined 1-13 on the night. The team was only 1-7 with runners in scoring position.
  • Rafael Dolis looks to have a pretty good fastball/breaking ball combo, but the control wasn’t there and he walked three men in his two innings of work.
  • Paul Maholm’s debut was an outing he’d like to forget. The Brewers had 10 men come to the plate in the first inning, with Maholm giving up five runs. Aramis Ramirez reached on a fielders choice and then promptly STOLE SECOND BASE! I couldn’t believe it either.

Thoughts?

I think Dale Sveum has the platoon situations backwards. Shouldn’t they be playing Bryan LaHair everyday, even against tough lefties like Cliff Lee, er, I mean, Chris Narveson? Instead, Jeff Baker got the nod at 1B.
But Dale’s played it the conventional way; platooning the inexperienced while playing the veteran (DeJesus) even though the veteran has plenty of evidence of struggling against left handers. Of course, DeJesus went on to get on base three times, so what do I know? I would just like to see LaHair play everyday rather than sitting against the likes of Chris Narveson simply because of the platoon advantage.
Ian Stewart hasn’t gotten the bat started yet, and who knows, it may never get started, but he has shown good defense which should save more than a few runs compared to the third base defense in previous years.

Ryan Dempster faces off against Yovani Gallardo in game 3 of the 4 game set on Wednesday at 1:20 CST.

  • It seems all Byrd is doing is striking out and hitting into double plays. I love Byrd, but even in a season already acknowledged as losing, his early struggles have been too much to bare. If he doesn’t heat up soon I’d like to see them call up Campana (although I don’t know where they’re going to find the roster spot for him) to get some starts in center. Even if he doesn’t hit, he’s at least exciting to watch.

  • Chuck

    Even though I am not optomistic about this season, I have to say this.  It is only Game 5!  There are 157 games to go.  Relax!
    That being said, I think games are playing out as I suspected they would.  The Cubs will struggle to score runs and the rotation will struggle to keep guys off the bases.  The Cubs have no big thumpers or overly great OBP guys.  They are what they are.

  • Norm Bothwell

    I don’t think Byrd is all that good any more, but, it’s not even 20 at bats. If this is too much to bare already, I think you’re in for a VERY long season.

    •  I think the blown leads/almost amazing comebacks only to come up short are making it seem worse than it is. But yes, it is going to be a very long season.

  • Norm Bothwell

    I don’t think Byrd is all that good any more, but, it’s not even 20 at bats. If this is too much to bare already, I think you’re in for a VERY long season.

  • RichBeckman

    The Cubs have scored 1, 4, 4, 5 and 4 runs. That’s 18 for a 3.6 average. So that is not enough, but it does not strike me as all that bad.

    Maholm sucked, but the bullpen only gave up one run in five innings!! Surely Maholm will not be that bad consistently…..

    Watching Lendy Castillo over the course of the year could prove to be a lot of fun.

    • Chuck

      This is where the Cubs rank in various cats:
      Runs: 18 = 17th
      AVG: .226 = 18th
      OBP: .297 = 16th
      SLG: .354 = 20th
      ERA: 4.80 = 27th
      Quality Starts: 3 = 6th (bad bullpen)
      WHIP: 1.29 = 21st
      BAA: .230 = 17th
      That is a lot of mediocre to bad numbers.  The ERA number worries me the most considering it is cold enough to snow in a few cities.  What will happen when it warms up?  Yee gods!

      • Doc Raker

        Thanks for quantifying the Cubs short comings just in case anyone got sucked into 2012 Cub Pennant Mania by their awesome 1-4 start.

      • Seymour Butts

        What was that saying we used last year?
        “Small sample size”, oh yeah that was it.
        Too soon to declare an Apocalypse, but a slow footed former Cub stealing second against them might be a sign of it. 

      • Doc Raker

        That’s what your wife says, ‘small sample size’

      • Doc Raker

        Thanks for quantifying the Cubs short comings just in case anyone got sucked into 2012 Cub Pennant Mania by their awesome 1-4 start.

      • Seymour Butts

        What was that saying we used last year?
        “Small sample size”, oh yeah that was it.
        Too soon to declare an Apocalypse, but a slow footed former Cub stealing second against them might be a sign of it. 

      • Doc Raker

        That’s what your wife says, ‘small sample size’

  • BLPCB

    Why couldn’t Ramirez do these things with the Cubs? Sans the error that kept the rally going on Monday.

    • Sans the stolen base, he did those things in Chicago for nine years.  Talking s*** about Ramirez has never made sense to me.  

      • Norm Bothwell

         A lot of things Cub fans complain about don’t make sense to me.

      • I agree!!! A lot of the things they praise don’t make sense to me either!!!

      • I like that statement almost as much as I like Mark DeRosa!

      • Norm Bothwell

         A lot of things Cub fans complain about don’t make sense to me.

      • I agree!!! A lot of the things they praise don’t make sense to me either!!!

      • I like that statement almost as much as I like Mark DeRosa!

      • Doc Raker

        I didn’t see Aram hit very well in April in Wrigley, he certainly looked better yesterday than his typical cold April days in a Cub uniform.

      • BLPCB

        Yes, that is what I was getting at

      • Doc Raker

        I didn’t see Aram hit very well in April in Wrigley, he certainly looked better yesterday than his typical cold April days in a Cub uniform.

      • AC0000000

        Yes, that is what I was getting at

    • RichBeckman

      We soured on Ramirez not because he did not hit (as jswanson says, he did), but because he came down with Soriano disease: too often he showed no hustle (that he got hurt a lot didn’t help.)

      • BLPCB

        And he never hit in April and May

      • Norm Bothwell

        Never, except in 2004, 05, 07, 08, and 09

      • Eddie Von White

        That’s right, Mr. Beckman.

    • RichBeckman

      We soured on Ramirez not because he did not hit (as jswanson says, he did), but because he came down with Soriano disease: too often he showed no hustle (that he got hurt a lot didn’t help.)

      • AC0000000

        And he never hit in April and May

      • Norm Bothwell

        Never, except in 2004, 05, 07, 08, and 09

      • Eddie Von White

        That’s right, Mr. Beckman.

  • Doc Raker

    Dolis, pronounced Do Leez by Len, walked 3 batters in limited work. Doesn’t that make him closer material? At least a set up man?
    * Swammy needs to be playing the hot players, LaHair hits he should get a chance to play against lefties. Mather hits, find a spot for him. This narrow mindedneess on who plays where when is not what a rebuilding team needs, we need to see options and see who performs best. So far that isn’t Byrd or Baker. Even if you want to platoon LaHair, Mather has shown more promise than Baker.

  • Doc Raker

    Dolis, pronounced Do Leez by Len, walked 3 batters in limited work. Doesn’t that make him closer material? At least a set up man?
    * Swammy needs to be playing the hot players, LaHair hits he should get a chance to play against lefties. Mather hits, find a spot for him. This narrow mindedneess on who plays where when is not what a rebuilding team needs, we need to see options and see who performs best. So far that isn’t Byrd or Baker. Even if you want to platoon LaHair, Mather has shown more promise than Baker.

  • Doc Raker

    Did anyone notice the Brewers scored on the contact play? Did anyone notice the Brewers had speed on the base paths? Did anyone notice Mather had no speed on the Cubs contact play the other day?

    • Jedi

      Yep, Gomez wasn’t on his back foot heading back to the bag when the ball was hit…he was creeping down the line and he has ELITE speed.  It was still incredibly close.  THAT is why you only use that play when you have elite speed on the bases.  Even the Brewers announcers were marveling that he scored because the play developed so quickly (possibly even faster than the one on Opening Day).

      http://milwaukee.brewers.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=20508213&c_id=mlb 

  • Doc Raker

    Did anyone notice the Brewers scored on the contact play? Did anyone notice the Brewers had speed on the base paths? Did anyone notice Mather had no speed on the Cubs contact play the other day?

    • Jedi

      Yep, Gomez wasn’t on his back foot heading back to the bag when the ball was hit…he was creeping down the line and he has ELITE speed.  It was still incredibly close.  THAT is why you only use that play when you have elite speed on the bases.  Even the Brewers announcers were marveling that he scored because the play developed so quickly (possibly even faster than the one on Opening Day).

      http://milwaukee.brewers.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=20508213&c_id=mlb 

  • Seymour Butts

    Watched a few innings of the Rays Tigers yesterday. Carlos Pena is raking. Not just in Florida, but it was in the 30’s in Detroit and he hit the ball hard. Ave around .440. What kind of laundry soap is Otis using? Something Yosh left in the corner?d  

    • Maybe we should switch to cotton uniforms.  

      • Eddie Von White

         Cheering for laundry.

    • Doc Raker

      I know, Pena is raking and Aram is hitting in April and stealing bases, baseball is a funny game. Small sample size, I am sure Pena will settle in at .220 and Aram will pull up lame soon.

  • Seymour Butts

    Watched a few innings of the Rays Tigers yesterday. Carlos Pena is raking. Not just in Florida, but it was in the 30’s in Detroit and he hit the ball hard. Ave around .440. What kind of laundry soap is Otis using? Something Yosh left in the corner?d  

    • Maybe we should switch to cotton uniforms.  

      • Eddie Von White

         Cheering for laundry.

    • Doc Raker

      I know, Pena is raking and Aram is hitting in April and stealing bases, baseball is a funny game. Small sample size, I am sure Pena will settle in at .220 and Aram will pull up lame soon.

  • Mark Strickler

    The Brew Crew plays an effective style of baseball, get runners over and they get them in from third.  The Cubs play like the club they are, a 1-4 club.  They were constructed by Theo Epstein to play the type of ball that they are playing. 

    • Doc Raker

      Thed is deconstructing the team on purpose, he has to break it down before rebuilding the system, kinda like Sergeant Hulka did with John Winger, Russell Ziskey and Dewey Oxburger.  Lee Harvey, you are a madman. When you stole that cow, and your friend tried to make it with the cow. I want to party with you, cowboy. If the two of us together, forget it. I’m gonna go out on a limb here. I’m gonna volunteer my leadership to this platoon. An army without leaders is like a foot without a big toe. And Sergeant Hulka isn’t always gonna be here to be that big toe for us. I think that we owe a big round of applause to our newest, bestest buddy, and big toe… Sergeant Hulka. 

  • Mark Strickler

    The Brew Crew plays an effective style of baseball, get runners over and they get them in from third.  The Cubs play like the club they are, a 1-4 club.  They were constructed by Theo Epstein to play the type of ball that they are playing. 

    • Doc Raker

      Thed is deconstructing the team on purpose, he has to break it down before rebuilding the system, kinda like Sergeant Hulka did with John Winger, Russell Ziskey and Dewey Oxburger.  Lee Harvey, you are a madman. When you stole that cow, and your friend tried to make it with the cow. I want to party with you, cowboy. If the two of us together, forget it. I’m gonna go out on a limb here. I’m gonna volunteer my leadership to this platoon. An army without leaders is like a foot without a big toe. And Sergeant Hulka isn’t always gonna be here to be that big toe for us. I think that we owe a big round of applause to our newest, bestest buddy, and big toe… Sergeant Hulka.