The Cubs look to finish the series with a split today after letting a late lead slip away yesterday. Brooks Raley will make his second Major League start and he has quite the opponent, 14 game winner Johnny Cueto. Here is how the Cubs will line up behind Raley.
DeJesus – RF
Rizzo – 1B
Soriano – LF
Castro – SS
Valbuena – 3B
Jackson – CF
Clevenger – C
Raley – P
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The Cubs, fresh off almost being no-hit, battle the Pirates in the rubber game of the series today. Travis Wood starts for the Cubs and tries to keep the ball in the ballpark which has been a major problem for him as of late. Darwin Barney is not in the lineup today, hopefully that is just precautionary after being hit in the head last night. Here is how the Cubs will line up.
1. DeJesus – CF
2. Castro – SS
3. Rizzo – 1B
4. Soriano – LF
5. LaHair – RF
6. Baker – 2B
7. Castillo – C
8. Valbuena - 3B
9. Wood – P
Why can’t Cardenas get a start at 2B or 3B??
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Another arm is off the market, not sure if he was ever “on the market” but Francisco Liriano is headed to the White Sox. Kenny Williams has been busy this trade season as he sees an opportunity to win now and he’s going for it. The Sox get Liriano for Eduardo Escobar, and Pedro Hernandez. That’s two arms that could have went to the Braves in a deal, but didn’t. Maybe that will make the Braves a little more desperate as we get closer to the deadline and come back at the Cubs for Dempster. Same goes for the Dodgers, hopefully Garza proves himself healthy in his side session and a deal can be made, although it seems highly unlikely.
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Matt Garza really can’t figure out this pitching on the road thing. Garza fell to 2-6 on the road as the Braves knocked around the Cubs starter en route to a 7-3 victory to finish the four game series with a split. Things were really over before they started tonight as the Braves made Garza throw 44 pitches in an exhausting first inning. A pair of two-run homers did the trick for Atlanta, one by Jason Heyward, and one by Brian McCann to put the Braves up 4-0 at the end of one. The Cubs got their first hit and their first run of the game in the fifth when Geovany Soto hit his 6th home run of the season to make it 5-1 Atlanta. The Braves got that run right back in the bottom half of the fifth to make it 6-1, but the Cubs weren’t dead yet. A Reed Johnson pinch hit RBI single, and a throwing error by Heyward in the 6th brought the Cubs back within three but that’s as close as they would get. Garza finished the night only making it through four innings, giving up five runs on five hits, three of which were home runs while walking three and striking out six. Mike Minor had his way with the Cubs lineup, as most lefties do, as the Cubs only managed five hits on the night. Anthony Rizzo extended his hitting streak to six games by going 1-for-4 with a single. The Cubs will finish off the first half in New York against the Mets this weekend, full box score and highlights after the jump.
Be safe out there, go Cubs!
Here is your nightly recap for the Cubs minor league system, enjoy.
Peoria’s pitching had a rough weekend. One night after giving up 20 runs to Quad Cities they gave up 9 in a 9-2 defeat. Wes Darvill and Rafael Lopez each had two hits in the losing effort. Brad Zapenas was 1-for-1 with a double and three walks. Michael Jensen was beat up on the mound for Peoria as he took the loss, dropping his record to 3-2 on the season.
Austin Kirk was outstanding once again, however he had to settle for a no decision as the bullpen couldn’t hold a late 3-2 lead. Jupiter tied the game in the 8th and 9th innings, only to have Daytona walk off in the ninth for a 5-4 victory. Arismendy Alcantara was 2-for-5 with two triples and two RBI’s. Matt Szczur continues to turn his season around slowly but surely going 1-for-4 and stealing his 16th base of the season.
Junior Lake made his Smokies debut on Sunday and he didn’t disappoint. One of the Cubs top infield prospected went 2-for-4 with a double and a triple. Elliot Soto also had two hits and an RBI in the losing effort. Brooks Raley had a solid day on the mound going a strong six innings for a no decision as the Smokies couldn’t hold on to a 2-0 lead and ended up losing 4-2.
Brett Jackson had a big day at the plate going 2-for-3 with a home run, an RBI, and two runs scored. Unfortunately that wasn’t enough as Iowa fell to New Orleans 12-4. Luis Valbuena and Alfredo Amezaga each had two hits as well. Iowa pitching got beat up top to bottom, Jay Jackson took the loss after surrendering five runs in four innings of work.
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Brooks Raley was awesome Friday night going six innings, giving up two runs on three hits to earn a no decision. Kevin Rhoderick came in and was equally effective, holding the Lookouts scoreless over the next inning and 1/3rd to come out with the victory. Jae-Hoon Ha, Logan Watkins, and Juan Apodaca all had two hits for the Smokies, as they were able to complete the comeback by scoring in the 7th inning to take the lead 3-2. Full box score after the jump.
The weather is miserable in the Chicagoland area today, but it’s not as bad as the Cubs, they are ice-cold. Thanks to a rocky outing from Chris Volstad, and some bad defensive work, stop me if you’ve heard this before, the Cubs have dropped their sixth in a row. Right from the hop it was apparent that the Cubs probably didn’t have a chance today. Before the sparse crowd could even get settled the Reds were up 4-0 in the top of the first inning against Volstad. Things never really got better for the Cubs as every time they tried to mount a comeback the Reds were able to tack on to their lead. When it was all said and done, the Reds walk out with a 9-4 victory, in which the Cubs almost had more errors (3) than runs (4) and hits (5). Full Recap after the jump.
St. Louis wins the series 2 – 1.
Full recap after the jump