22-15 PCT Points up on the Cardinals
The Week that was:
- Game 1 L 5-3. Dempster Ks 7 and doesn't give up an ER...but the 5 unearned runs come back to bight him. Soto hits his 6th HR of the season
- Game 2 Zambrano has another great start despite only K'ing 3...goes 8 scoreless, then Wood recordes the save. Offense doesn't do too much aside from Ronny Cedeno's 2 run single in the 4th.
- Game 3 Ugh. Bad first start for Jon Lieber (I believe he's going back to the pen if i heard correctly). No offense whatsoever vs. 7 HRs....
- Game 4 Ted Lilly makes his 4th straight QS. He's Ks 10, allows only 1 run in 7 IP, and drives in 1. Derrek Lee hits his 9th HR.
- Game 5 Another very good start, but the offense doesn't wake up quick enough to get him the win. Instead Scott Eyre gets the win in first first game back. Cubs bat around in the 7th, including Kosuke Fukudome's 2nd major league HR.
- Game 6. Wasn't the great pitching matchup we had hoped because of the weather, but the result was good. Sean Gallagher pitches decently for his first career start. Lee hits his 10th HR of the season, and Reed Johnson nails his 1st...both into the heart of the wind. Daryle Ward's RBI Double gave the Cubs the lead...Kerry Wood the save.
My last week's prediction. I said 3-3, they go 4-2...I'm hapy with that. I had Carlos Zambrano and Carlos Marmol getting wins, they did...Ryan Dempster not so much even though he deserved to at least once. I also had Fukudome hitting 2 HRs, maybe that was a bit too bold...but he hit one...I get points for that right?
Headsratcher of the week: Bullpen usage. Carlos Marmol doesn't throw during the Reds series, then every game of the Diamondbacks series? Lou it's the 9th inning of a blowout...we don't need to use Marmol. I also wouldn't be surprised if Chad Fox stops getting key situations, or even loses his spot on the team. Can't be walking people, isn't that right Carmen Pigantiello?
What to expect this week:
- Cubs start off a 4 game home series with the Padres (which includes 3 night games...weird) with a Carlos Zambrano vs. Randy Wolf matchup. The Padres must be cursing mother nature for pushing back Zambrano into this series because Z has given up 2 runs in his last 28+ IP. Randy Wolf has posted a 4.81 Road ERA and got rocked by the Braves in his last start to the tune of 5 Er in 6 IP with a L.
- Game 2: Shawn Estes vs. Jason Marquis. Cubs get their second shot at Estes since his 2003 season of mediocrity with the Cubs. The only time before that they got to do that they absoluetly crushed Estes, 2.2 IP 9 ER. This is only Estes' 2nd start since 2005, the first of the year. He gave up 2 unearned runs in his only outing of the season against the Braves on Thursday. Jason Marquis is comign off 2 straight loses where he has given up 5 runs. Can somebody tell him it's still May, he still should be good.
- Game 3 Ted Lilly vs. Jake Peavy I shouldn't have to tell you how good Jake Peavy is, and he's very good. I'll stick to the good news, the Padres have lost 4 out of his last 5 starts. Conversly, the Cubs have won 3 out of Lilly's last 4 starts, all QS. Lilly is coming off of his best start of the season. Still the odds are agains the Cubs
- Game 4 Ryan Dempster vs. Greg Maddux. Well Mad Dogg finally did it, he got his 350th win. Took him 5 starts to do it too. He has a 4.94 away ERA. Ryan Dempster, who I think slightly resembles Greg Maddux's style (to a much lesser account obviously) takes the mound. He's coming off his first loss of the season, although he failed to surrender an ER.
- Game 5 Cubs remain at home to try and continue their ownage of the Pirates. Friday's game matches Sean Gallagher and ?. Sean Gallagher makes his 2nd career start. He was decent against the Diamondbacks, hopefully he can improve on that against the Pirates surprisingly decent offense (hopefully Nate McLouth will get the 72-hour flu over the weekend).
- Game 6 Carlos Zambrano vs. Zach Duke Duke has faced the Cusb twice this season, his first start was great, despite the Cubs win. His second start was not very good (5 ER 4 IP). I've already told you how dominate Z has been sofar this season, and he hasn't faced the Pirates yet this season. Although in the last 3 years he's only fared average against them (4-4 4.43 ERA).
- Game 7 Jason Marquis vs. Paul Maholm. Marquis got his first win agains the Buccos on April 19th a 1 ER 6 IP 7 K outing in Wrigley. Maholm hasn't faced the Cubs yet this season, adn is 2-3 with a 4.79 ERA.
Predicition: I kinda want to get greedy and say the Cubs go 6-1 at home vs. two of the the bottum dwellers of the league. But I can't do it...they go 5-2 losing the final game of the pirates series and the one against Peavy. Zambrano racks up 2 more wins, along with one from Dempster and Sean Gallagher's first career win. Bob Howry gets the other win. As for the offense, they score 8+ twice, once in each series. Alfonso Soriano continues to heat up, hitting above .320 for the week with multiple homers.