Lately the Cubs have fallen into a rut. They get themselves in a hole early, then decide to try to make a comeback at the end, only to come up short every time. Tonight, it seemed like Ryan Dempster gave some of his new found pitching prowess to John Danks. Dempster looked a little lost, like he couldn’t control his pitches. Danks looked sharp, blanking the Cubs for 6.1 innings. We couldn’t get on base for 4 1/3 innings – it was looking pretty bleak. However:
The Good: Alfonso Soriano actually had a pretty good game, going 3-for-4 and breaking up the no-no with a double in the 5th, a single in the 7th, and a 2-run home run in the 9th. His defense was a tad sloppy, but I’ll give him a pass this time.
To the dismay of many, I will say that Koyie Hill actually did a good job tonight. A few people are not fond of him, but he does work hard and you can’t fault a guy for hard work. He did what he needed to do, making an excellent throw to catch De Aza stealing, and he had a hit (more than Castro and LaHair combined).
The absolute best part of the game was the bottom of the ninth. It was turning into a real snooze-fest and I was getting ready to call it a night and slap another L up on the flagpole. Then Barney hit a single (Good!). But LaHair flew out (Bummer.). Then Soriano had a home run (Hooray, we won’t be shut out tonight!)! Then Baker had a single (Too bad nobody likes him anyway) and Mather hit a shot to left! Wow. We were fighting back from the 7-0 we dug ourselves into. There was still a heartbeat, after all! However:
The Bad: Dempster had an off night, and this time, he earned his loss. He showed us a glimpse of the Dempster of old – could this be a relapse? Camp relieved him in the 7th and caused no damage. James Russell took over the 8th, and things went even more downhill. He let Adam Dunn take him deep to left to start the inning, and then pitched himself into a jam he couldn’t get out of. It took 3 pitchers to get out of the 8th, and one of them (Blake Parker, the new guy) had to leave due to an undisclosed injury. If it wasn’t for the 8th, we may have had a chance of winning.
Summary: The Cubs have now lost 5 in a row. 3 of them were by one run, but it is getting hard to find a silver lining, especially when we’re the sole occupants of last place in the Central. Theo has to do something. LaHair is 5-for-26 in the past week. Could we give LaHair a rest and bring Rizzo up for a couple games? I wouldn’t be opposed to it.