Saturday, April 15

Pirates 2, Cubs 1...PNC streak ends

Tonight's game was pretty boring but I did catch the whole thing on WGN so I'll throw out a few comments. First thing: Ramirez did get a hit tonight but he still looks very uncomfortable at the plate. Not sure that is ass muscle is back to 100% but hopefully he'll warm up soon. The Cubs can't afford for their clean up hitter to hit < .200. If he doesn't get hot soon, have Murton hit 4th. Murt’s getting better every game and went 2-3 with a walk tonight. He would have been 3-3 if P-Burgh's 3rd baseman, Randa, didn't snag a line drive in the top of the 9th. Speaking of Murton, anyone else think he looks eerily similar to McGwire at the plate? He has a similar stance and he's starting look like he can hit like big Mac too.

Barrett got bumped up to 5th in the order but failed to do anything notable offensively. Defensively, he attempted to throw out two stealing. He got the second one but his first throw ended up well into center (big surprise there…).

As for tonight's pitchers, both did well. I expected Duke to do well against us (2 ER in 23 IP against the Cubs) but Williams surprised me. He went a solid six and only one of the two runs he gave up were earned. The unearned run came as a result of a couple of ugly plays in the infield, one of which was a Cedeno throwing error. Cedeno has been impressive so far unless he has time to think. He's great charging a ball and quickly getting it over to first but give him some time and he struggles. Anyway, let's hope Jerome can reproduce this kind of performance because who knows when our "star pitchers" will be back (side note: Wood threw 51 pitches today but I’m sure he’s still got quite a few more simulations and minor league rehab games ahead of him).

A couple of other random things: The Cubs turned three double plays tonight, always good to see. This loss ends an eight game winning streak at PNC Park. We've got Rusch on the hill tomorrow night (for a couple of innings at least...I don't expect him to last long) but with any luck we'll be able to start our next PNC winning streak and take this series.


At 10:22 PM, Anonymous Lazlo said...

Murton will be better than Big Mac. He won't be the power hitter Mac was, but he will hit for good avg. good obp, and he will not strike out as much.

Williams looked very good, but his location wasn't great a lot. He did well tonight because the changeup was great. What will happen if that changeup isn't good one day? He'll have to move the ball better. But, tonight was definitely good and I liked what I saw. I would very much like to see him reduce the walks. At least one came back to get him today.

I'm not worried about Ronny right now. I'm worried about Pierre and right field.

Yes, the Barrett throw was bad. Oh well.

At 11:39 PM, Blogger DS said...

Williams was definitely working speed rather than location, as the announcers pointed out a couple of times.

I'm still not worried about Pierre. Maybe I'm cutting him too much slack but he'll start getting more hits. RF does look like a real issue right now. Pagan was looking good until he blew out his knee or whatever...Bynum is a joke, moreso than Jones.

As for the throw, it was probably four feet over a leaping Hairston, it was horrible.

At 2:24 AM, Anonymous Lazlo said...

Murton is going back to Chicago for an MRI on his hamstring and knee. It's really too bad. I thought he had a shot at making a real impact on our team. Now I don't what will happen. I don't know if the Cubs will bring up an extra outfielder or just add another pitcher. I guess we will find out soon.

At 2:59 AM, Blogger DS said...

wait a minute lazlo, i know you're prone to typos so do you mean Murton or Pagan?

At 10:58 AM, Anonymous Lazlo said...

Hah. Wow. Thanks. That would've been really bad. It's definitely Pagan. I must just have Murton on the brain.

At 1:13 PM, Anonymous Lazlo said...

Bynum batting 2nd today. I'm trying to be optimistic.

Let's hope Rusch does better than he did in his last two starts and that Snell continues to stink (opponents are batting over .400 against him this season, and over .300 in his young career). W

alker batting 5th with Barrett taking a seat on the bench - could mean that Walker can take the lead in the "Cub of the Week" competition. Then again, Murton has the advantage of batting behind Walker. They may combine for some runs.


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