Cubs Round-Up 5/04-5/09

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LaHair SMASH

So, how about those Cubs? Like Anno pointed out, The Cubs won these last two series against two of the best teams in the National League. I have really enjoyed watching this team play, especially lately. It’s amazing how the team you love will change your day around just by winning. Not sure if you guys are the same way, but a lot of times my mood depends on whether the Cubs win or lose, I know it’s probably not very mature, but what the heck. Any who, let’s get into the game recaps.

Home series vs. The Dodgers:

5/04: Cubs 5, Dodgers 4

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

LAD

0

0

1

0

0

0

1

2

0

4

6

0

CHC

2

0

0

1

0

1

1

0

x

5

11

0

W: Maholm (3-2)                   L: Billingsley (2-2)                                 SV: Dolis (2)

 

Chi Cubs

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Maholm(W, 3-2)

6.0

3

1

1

0

4

1

5.13

 

David DeJesus and Alfonso Soriano had a great game. DeJesus was a homer shy of the cycle, and Soriano went 3-for-3 with two RBIs. The victory improved Paul Maholm’s record to 3-0 with a 1.48 ERA.  Before joining the Cubs, Maholm hadn’t won since last July, going 0-7 with a 7.03 ERA in that stretch.

 

5/05: Dodgers 5, Cubs 1

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

LAD

0

3

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

5

6

1

CHC

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

1

5

2

W: Capuano (4-0)                  L: Volstad (0-4)

 

Chi Cubs

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Volstad(L, 0-4)

5.0

4

5

5

3

1

0

6.55

 

Ian Stewart‘s RBI single in the ninth was the only run the Cubs could come up with. The Dodgers’ starting pitcher Chris Capuano pitched seven complete innings and only allowed 3 hits. The Cubs didn’t really have any serious threat past the opening inning.

 

5/06: Cubs 4, Dodgers 3

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

R

H

E

LAD

0

1

2

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

3

6

0

CHC

0

0

2

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

1

4

12

1

W: Dolis (2-2)                        L: Wright (1-2)

 

Chi Cubs

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Wood, T

6.0

3

3

3

3

4

1

4.50

 

The Cubs trailed, 3-2, going into the ninth when Ian Stewart hit a pinch-hit single with one out and after his hit, DeJesus walked to set up Tony Campana‘s game-tying RBI double. DeJesus tried to score as well, but he was thrown out at the plate. David would get another opportunity though because with the bases full in the 11th, DeJesus’ patience at the plate paid off, earning a walk and thus giving the Cubs the walk-off victory over the Dodgers. Travis Wood, was pitching for Matt Garza, who was sick, he did a nice job considering the circumstance and also went 2-for-2 at the plate.

 

Home series vs. The Braves:

5/07: Cubs 5, Braves 1

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

ATL

0

1

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

6

0

CHC

0

0

0

2

0

0

1

2

x

5

9

0

W: Samardzija (4-1)                              L: Hanson (3-3)

 

Chi Cubs

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Samardzija(W, 4-1)

7.0

5

1

1

2

7

1

3.03

 

This was my favorite game of these two series. Jeff Samardzija picked up his fourth win by going seven strong innings and only giving up one run, which was a homer by Jason Heyward. The majority of the Cubs offense came courtesy of the long ball. Bryan LaHair and Stewart hit back-to-back fourth-inning homers and Geovany Soto also provided a two-run homer, which made me jump out of my seat! There is no one that is happier to see Soto play well more than I am. He deserves it and just hearing all the trade rumors and fans being all upset with him, just makes me want him to quiet all the haters up by kicking butt. I think everyone knows by now how big of a Soto fan I am, so I will defend him until the end :) Carlos Marmol had an interesting eighth. He walked the first two batters, but was able to retire the Braves’ 3-4 and 5 hitters and escape with no damage. Marmol was pumped up after that, and so was I. Seriously, Marmol might be the only guy that makes me so nervous every time I see him, and that’s not a compliment. When he’s done pitching, it always feels like I was out there, I am borderline heart attack whenever I see him warming up. By the way, our very own Bryan LaHair leads all NL first baseman in homers and is only 2 homers behind Adam Dunn for the MLB lead. And yes, he has more homers than Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder combined! I know that Albert and Prince are probably going to change that but for now it’s really fun being able to say that! Its games like this one that remind me of how much fun it is being a fan. This is why I’ve been a fan for so long and how the good times take away all the bad memories. It reminds me to have patience, because the day that they win it all will be really really sweet!

 

5/08: Braves 3, Cubs 1

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

ATL

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

2

0

3

9

1

CHC

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

0

1

5

0

W: Medlen (1-0)                    L: Wood (0-2)                         SV: Kimbrel (10)

 

Chi Cubs

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Dempster

7.0

6

1

1

1

7

0

1.02

 

Ryan Dempster is still looking for his first win since last August. Poor guy can’t get a win to save his life! This brings back memories when one of my FAVORITE Cubs (Rich Harden) couldn’t get his first W. It seems like they pitch their heart out and the Cubs just forget how to hit. Marmol blew it for Demps in his last outing and this time it would be Kerry Wood. With the game tied at 1 in the eighth, Michael Bourn singled off Wood who then walked Martin Prado. Wood then walked Brian McCann to load the bases, and after a visit from pitching coach Bosio, Dan Uggla singled to center giving the Braves the 3-1 victory over the Cubs. Kerry Wood had a Carlos Zambrano-style melt down by tossing his glove and hat to the stands before heading back into the dugout. Dempster, remains winless in his last 14 starts, let’s hope the Cubs bring their bats next time he pitches.

 

5/09: Cubs 1, Braves 0

 

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

R

H

E

ATL

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

4

0

CHC

0

0

0

0

0

0

1

0

x

1

5

0

W: Maholm (4-2)                   L: Hudson (1-1)                      SV: Dolis (3)

 

Chi Cubs

IP

H

R

ER

BB

SO

HR

ERA

Maholm(W, 4-2)

7.0

3

0

0

3

3

0

4.05

 

The Cubs closed out their homestand with a 1-0 win over Atlanta on Wednesday, taking their third straight home series for the first time since last September. Maholm allowed only three hits, improving to 3-2. He’s allowed only two earned runs over the last 19 1/3 innings. LaHair had a two-out RBI single in the seventh that gave the Cubs’ their lone run which was enough for Maholm who outdueled Braves starter Tim Hudson with seven scoreless innings. Also, LaHair has reached base in 27 straight games dating back to April 8, most by a Cubs first baseman since Derrek Lee had a streak in 2009. On defense, the Cubs are shifting and over-shifting more, and this game was a great example of that, there were various plays were the infielders were in the right place at the right time. Cubs manager Dale Sveum admitted that he and bench coach Pat Listach have been examining spray charts, looking at scouting reports and watching video to get tendencies on opposing hitters.

 

Positives:

Starting pitching, The Cubs starters have been amazing. Chris Volstad is pretty much the only one that has struggled, but hasn’t done horribly where the Cubs couldn’t have come back and won those games. Just as an example, here are the most recent numbers from our Ace, Ryan Dempster. In five starts he currently has an ERA of 1.02, he’s allowed four earned runs and the line of work for his worst outing is 6.2 IP, two earned runs, five hits and three walks. Yep, he’s good, even his worst outing was a good one, yet somehow Dempster has nothing to show for it. This is a perfect example of how unfair it is to evaluate a pitcher based on the number of “W’s” in the win column.

 

Needs improvement:

Offense, It has to be more consistent, plain and simple. Maybe the warmer weather has helped the big boys, because there are signs that the big bats are waking up. Basically, they can’t be scoring five runs one game and only one run the next, there needs to be a little more consistency with this.

Looking ahead:

The Cubs will have a weird five-game road trip. They will play a 3-game series with the Brewers and then fly to St. Louis where they will have two quick games before coming back home.

 

Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers

Friday, May 11, 7:10 PM CT, Miller Park

Matt Garza, RHP (2-1, 2.67 ERA) vs. Randy Wolf, LHP (2-3, 6.68 ERA)

Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers

Saturday, May 12, 12:05 PM CT, Miller Park

Chris Volstad, RHP (0-4, 6.55 ERA) vs. Shaun Marcum, RHP (1-1, 3.41 ERA)

Chicago Cubs vs. Milwaukee Brewers

Sunday, May 13, 1:10 PM CT, Miller Park

Jeff Samardzija, RHP (4-1, 3.03 ERA) vs. Marco Estrada, RHP (0-2, 4.50 ERA)

Chicago Cubs vs. St. Louis Cardinals

Monday, May 14, 6:05 PM CT, Busch Stadium

Ryan Dempster, RHP (0-1, 1.02 ERA) vs. Jake Westbrook, RHP (4-2, 1.76 ERA)

Thanks for reading and Go Cubs!

-Ivy

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