The 405 will be clogged tonight
Tonight sees game two in LA-LA land against those crafty dodgers, in the city where conscientiousness and altruism go to die. With Zambrano on the mound, we have another strong chance of snagging the win, as Carlos can't get enough of these self-absorbed Hollywood types. Glamour was always his strong suit, and with TheHawk's presence, maybe he'll pull out the pyrotechnics once more, just for LB's sake.
AROUND THE BASES - WHAT TO WATCH FOR
1st Base -- Zambrano loves Los Angeles.
In 7 career appearances vs. the Dodgers [3 starts], El Toro Borracho is a sturdy 1-1 with a 1.80 ERA. Not only that, but lifetime at Dodger Stadium, he's allowed only 2 unearned runs in 16 1/3 innings pitched. As if that all wasn't enough - the current Dodgers roster has a pathetic .182 BA against Z. [99 at-bats] Only Jeff Kent has anything to shout about, posting a .250 mark with 2 RBIs and 10 Ks.
2nd Base -- Derek Lowe: Not So Lucky
Lowe is a career 8-9 when pitching at Dodger Stadium [4.26 ERA], which makes his decision to join them all the more perplexing. His last start saw him cough up 8 runs on 9 hits in just 5 innings of work. Derrek Lee is also 6-for-12 lifetime [HR, 3 RBI] and Neifi Perez is .357 lifetime [5-for-14, HR, 3 RBI], which might make tonight more difficult for the Lowe-meister.
3rd Base -- Hot Hitters
Todd Walker and Matt Murton are red hot right now [Ho Ho Ho], tearing the cover off the ball over the last 7 days. Walker rightly earned COTW for his efforts [.474, 2 HR, 5 RBI], while El Murto was no Ramblin' Rose with an equally warm week [.360, HR, 2 2B, 3B, 6 RBI]. For Los Angeles, Olmedo Saenz [.333, HR, 6 RBI] and Bill Mueller [.333, 2 HR, 6 RBI] are the hot hands to pay attention to.
Home Plate -- Dempster's Run at History
After last night's performance, Ryan Dempster moved one step closer to the Cubs' record books. He is tied with Joe Borowski [hey, whatever happened to that salty sea dog?] for most consecutive converted saves with 22, and has a chance to smash it tonight. His current scoreless innings streak is now up to 29 1/3 [going back to last season], making him look like a changed man from the once-failed starter who went 3-7 with a 6.54 ERA in his last full season as a starter [2004 in Cincinnati, which is hardly surprising].
Talk to us! I'm looking at a juicy W tonight [and that's a double pun, you know]. Tell me how much you hate me, and let's have some laughs.