Results tagged ‘ Travis Wood ’

Series Preview – Rockies @ Cubs; May 13 – May 15, 2013

Rockies preview

  The Cubs are ready to go on a run, I really believe that considering it’s been about two years since they put together an honest to God winning streak.  I think they have the opportunity to build on their last two wins in Washington, the next test won’t be easy, but the chance is there for the Cubs to reel off some wins here.  The Rockies come to town for a three game series starting tonight, and it all starts with their offensive attack.  The Rockies have scored 177 runs, that’s good for seventh best in the Majors, yeah Helton previewI know, the Rockies always score runs as they play in a launching pad.  While that’s true the Rockies have been equally as good on the road this year as they have scored 86 runs on the road compared to 91 at home, that’s not a normal Rockies attack.  The Cubs starters will be tasked with shutting down that Rockies attack, and that plays a huge role in whether or not the Cubs will be successful in this series.  The Cubs starters have an ERA of 3.50 which is sixth best in the Majors, that is where the Cubs hold the advantage in this series as the Rockies have a team starters ERA of 4.20 which is nineteenth best in baseball.  Based on the numbers the Cubs have a really good chance to get late into the game with a lead, that is where the Cubs pen has to step up because if the Rockies have a lead late they usually don’t let it go.  The Cubs bullpen ERA is 4.13 which is twenty-fourth best in  baseball, the Rockies on the other hand have a bullpen ERA of 2.73, which is third in all of baseball.  The Cubs need to get out to a quick lead, and hope their starters get deep enough to eliminate as much of their own bullpen as possible, if they do that it could be a very successful series.

Last Series:

The Cubs took two out of three games from the Nationals in Washington over the weekend.

The Rockies lost two out of three to the Cardinals in St. Louis, and have lost four out their last five.

Game Times and Broadcast Information:

  • Monday, May 13, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on WCIU
  • Tuesday, May 14, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on CSN Chicago
  • Wednesday, May 15, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on CSN Chicago

Starting Pitchers Scheduled:

Cubs:

Game One – Travis Wood (3-2, 2.33)
– Career vs. Rockies (3 appearances, 2 GS) (0-1, 2.77)

Game Two – Carlos Villanueva (1-2, 3.02)
– Career vs. Rockies (11 appearances, 0 GS) (0-1, 10.05)

Game Three – Jeff Samardzija (1-5, 3.70)
– Career vs. Rockies (5 appearances, 1 GS) (0-0, 2.25)

Rockies:

Game One – Juan Nicasio (3-0, 4.72)
– Career vs. Cubs (first appearance)

Game Two – Jeff Francis (1-3, 6.90)
– Career vs. Cubs (6 GS) (1-0, 7.67)

Game Three – Jon Garland (3-3, 4.83)
– Career vs. Cubs (12 appearances, 8 GS) (4-4, 3.61)

Bold Prediction:

The Cubs should carry the momentum they generated in Washington over the weekend into this series, at least I hope so.  I really think they will, and I like the match ups on the mound to favor the Cubs.  As long as the Cubs can play solid defense they have an outside shot to sweep this series, and I think that’s what they will do, sweep the Rockies.  As in Washington, the only game the Cubs dropped was the one where they shot themselves in the foot defensively, that’s the only way I see the Cubs losing a game in this series.

George header

Cubs comeback to steal a win, and the series from Nationals

Cubs 5-12 line

Full Box Score

  The Cubs are usually on the other end of these games, I like winning these games WAY more than losing them.  The Cubs had nothing going all day as they were being no hit through five innings, then they started to chip away at Nationals starter Gio Gonzalez.  The Cubs loaded the bases in the sixth only to come up empty, but it signaled that the Cubs might be ready to make things difficult for the Nats.  Gonzalez rebounded nicely in the seventh inning, Soriano 5-12but Nats manager Davey Johnson decided to pull Gio after only 86 pitches on the day, the Cubs thank you Davey.  The Cubs went to work in the eighth as they played some small ball.  Navarro singled to lead off the eighth, he was then moved to second on a sac bunt by Barney.  Travis Wood pinch ran for Navarro and made a great base running play to tag up on a foul ball behind first base to make it to third with two outs.  Starlin Castro delivered as he took a Drew Storen pitch back up the middle for game tying base hit.  The Cubs used some aggressiveness in the ninth to take the lead an ultimately win the game.  They put the first two guys on in the ninth then Ryan Sweeney struck out, I know I’m not the only Cubs fan to think here we go again.  But on the very next pitch Soriano and Borbon executed a double steal and the Cubs finally got a break.  Kurt Suzuki‘s throw to third hit Welington Castillo‘s bat and went down the third base line allowing Soriano to score the game winning run.  Kevin Gregg was perfect in the ninth to secure the Cubs win, and the series win over the Nats.

At The Plate -  As I mentioned the Cubs had nothing going all day long, but woke up just in time.  Starlin Castro was 1-for-3 with a walk, and a game tying RBI from the lead-off spot.  Cody Ransom had a solid day from the two spot going 2-for-4 with two singles.  Dioner Navarro was one of the few guys who were locked in at the plate, he was 2-for-3 in the win.

On The Mound - Another really solid start for Scott Feldman, he had to settle for a no decision but that was better than an undeserved loss.  Feldman went six innings giving up one run on five hits while walking three and striking out six.  Kyuji Fujikawa was solid, and healthy for the second time this series.  Fujikawa worked a scoreless inning while striking out one, very encouraging to see his velocity up near 93-94 MPH.  James Russell worked a scoreless eighth inning while walking one to earn his first win of the season.  Kevin Gregg was lights out yet again, what else would you expect?  Gregg worked a scoreless ninth while striking out two earning his sixth save of the season.

Up Next - The Cubs head home to start a three game series with the Colorado Rockies tomorrow night.Cubs 5-12 box

Game Highlights:

Soriano scores on a wild throw in the ninth
Gregg gets the save
Great catch by DeJesus
Castro’s game tying single
Navarro gets the first Cubs hit

George header

Wood brilliant again as Cubs edge Cards

Cubs line 5-7

Full Box Score

As a baseball fan these games are fun to watch.  No matter what the records are the Cubs and Cardinals always seem to play close, hard-fought games.  Tonight was no different as Travis Wood and Lance Lynn were locked in a battle all night long.  The Cardinals took an early 1-0 lead on a solo home run from Allen Craig, and that’s all they would get the whole night.  The Cubs erased that deficit and turned it into a lead in the fourth inning, all with two outs as well, something this team hasn’t been great at.  Alfonso Soriano looped a Wood 5-7single to right then Nate Schierholtz put a good swing on a 3-1 fastball and deposited it in the right center, well more center than right center, bleachers to give the Cubs a 2-1 lead and that’s how this one would end.  Tremendous job top to bottom tonight from the Cubs, love beating the Cardinals, and hey, that’s two wins in a row!

At The Plate – Lance Lynn came into this one 5-0 and he didn’t disappoint as he matched Travis Wood pitch for pitch.  The Cubs didn’t generate a lot as they only had five hits, but it was enough for the win.  Starlin Castro had a rough night at the plate and made a questionable error, but did manage a double in his last at bat to finish the night 1-for-4.  Alfonso Soriano was a big part of the offense tonight going 2-for-3 with a run scored, fonsi has his average up to a respectable .276, need more production out of him however.  Nate Schierholtz was the offensive hero tonight going 1-for-3 with his fourth home run of the season, two RBI’s and a run scored.

On The Mound – How about Travis Wood, he was outstanding again tonight and has been all season.  Wood improved his record to 3-2 and lowered his ERA to a sparkling 2.33 by going 6.2 innings giving up one run on five hits while walking two and striking out eight.  Carlos Marmol (yes I held my breath when he came in) was really good in this one.  Marmol worked 1.1 scoreless innings giving up two hits while walking one, but he worked around the free pass.  Kevin Gregg has been reborn, he was spotless again in the ninth inning, he didn’t give up any hits and struck out one. 

Up Next – The Cubs go for the sweep, okay it’s only a two game series, but a sweep over the Cardinals is a SWEEP OVER THE CARDINALS.  Carlos Villanueva will battle Jake Westbrook at 1:20 PM CST, both pitchers have been outstanding this year, should be another good one.

Cubs 5-7 box

Game Highlights:

Schierholtz’s game winning two run homer

Thanks for reading,
– George

Series Preview – Cardinals @ Cubs; May 7 – May 8, 2013

Cardinals preview header

Bring on the Cardinals.  The Red Birds and their fans descend on Wrigley Field tonight for a quick two game series against the Cubs.  The Cubs haven’t seen the Cardinals all year, but they know what to expect.  The Cardinals are scoring runs, as they usually do, they have scored 150 runs so far Cardinals previewthis year which is good for seventh in all of baseball.  The Cubs on the other hand have scored just 122 runs and sit twenty-second in the majors, but they are steadily improving.  The Cubs typically have the pitching advantage as they have started out so well this year, well that’s not the case in this series.  The Cardinals pitching is a big reason why they have the second most wins in the Majors (20-11), they have a team ERA of 3.09 which is tops in all of baseball. The Cubs are no slouch when it comes to team ERA as they sit at 3.82, good for eleventh in the Majors.  It should be a good series featuring some good pitching.  The team that makes the fewest mistakes will have the most success, that usually holds true throughout baseball, but it’s even more clear in this series.  Coming into this one the Cubs have committed a league worst twenty-seven errors, the Cardinals have only committed thirteen, fifth fewest in the Majors.  Pitch, hit, field…. win.

Central standings 5-7

Last Series:

The Cubs lost two out of three to the Reds at home, and beat the Rangers yesterday in a make up game.

The Cardinals swept the Brewers in Milwaukee, it was a three game sweep, and the Cardinals have won six straight.

Game Times and Broadcast Information:

  • Tuesday, May 7, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on WGN TV
  • Wednesday, May 8, 2013 – 1:20 PM CST on CSN Chicago

Starting Pitchers Scheduled:

Cubs:

Game One – Travis Wood (2-2, 2.50)
– Career vs. Cardinals (6 GS) (2-2, 5.36)

Game Two – Carlos Villanueva (1-2, 2.85)
– Career vs. Cardinals (25 appearances, 7 GS) (5-3, 3.10)

Cardinals:

Game One – Lance Lynn (5-0, 2.75)
– Career vs. Cubs (5 appearances, 4 GS) (4-0, 2.73)

Game Two – Jake Westbrook (2-1, 1.07)
– Career vs. Cubs (8 GS) (5-2, 4.14)

Bold Prediction:

The Cardinals are playing their best baseball of the year, winning six straight heading into tonight.  The Cubs have shown flashes of brilliance yet still find ways to lose games because of themselves.  The result, I think the Cubs split with the Cardinals in this brief series.

Thanks for reading,
– George

Feldman turns in second straight gem to get Cubs back in win column

Cubs 5-6 line

Full Box Score

Those are fun games to watch, and this was the first game all year where everyone could sit back and enjoy the ride instead of worrying about how the Cubs would close it out.  Scott Feldman got plenty of run support in this one as the Cubs exploded for nine runs, their largest output of the season.  Feldman will gladly take the run support but really didn’t need it, he was brilliant for the second straight outing, and has really been a pleasant surprise Rizzo 5-6all year-long.  Tonight was a preview of what the Cubs want to be every night, solid at bats, deep counts, using the whole field, and solid starting pitching.  The trick is doing this consistently, it’s not there yet, but I think it’s heading in the right direction.  The Cubs were holding a tenuous 1-0 lead into the fourth inning when they exploded for five runs en route to a 9-2 victory, and a delayed series win over the Rangers..

At The Plate – So many good things tonight as the Cubs pounded out eleven hits and scored nine runs.  Starlin Castro was 2-for-4 with a walk, for reals, two RBI’s and three runs scored.  Anthony Rizzo is dialed in at the plate right now, and it’s fun to watch.  Rizzo was 3-for-4 with a walk, his ninth home run of the season, a double, four RBI’s, and a run scored, he is now hitting .262 on the season.  Luis Valbuena continues to defy logic as he went 3-for-4 with a double, and a run scored, he’s now hitting .271 on the season.

On The Mound – What else can be said about Scott Feldman, he was awesome against his former team tonight.  Feldman went seven plus scoreless innings giving up two hits while walking one and striking out three.  The only bad news was that Feldman had to leave the game in the eighth with a cramp in his throwing hand, after the game Sveum said that Feldman would be fine.  James Russell worked two-thirds of an inning giving up one hit and no runs.  Rafael Dolis, who was called up today, got some work in as well, he worked 1.1 innings giving up two runs, both unearned on two hits.

Up Next – The Cubs welcome the St. Louis Cardinals to Wrigley for a brief two game series starting tomorrow.  Travis Wood will get the ball and he will be opposed by Lance Lynn who already has five wins this season.  First pitch scheduled for 7:05 PM CST.

Cubs 5-6 box

Game Highlights:

Cubs five run fourth inning
Rizzo’s line drive home run
Cubs take the lead on Soriano ground out

Thanks for reading,
– George

Cubs snatch defeat from the jaws of victory

Cubs 5-2 line

Full Box Score

  Just when you think that the Cubs have lost every way possible they go and gives us another disaster.  At this point it seems as though the only thing that is holding the Cubs back, is the Cubs themselves.  Travis Wood was outstanding in this one, as he has been so often this year, and yet again, somehow, the Cubs found a way to lose.  After taking a wood 5-2late 2-0 lead on a clutch Scott Hairston home run the wheels fell of in the eighth.  With two outs and two guys on it looked like the Cubs were going to get out of it, then the wind took over.  Yonder Alonso, who had the day off until the eighth inning, hit a fly ball to right field, it turned into more of a pop up in short right field because of the wind.  Julio Borbon, who made a spectacular catch to retire the previous batter charged in and called off Barney, then flat-out missed the ball, that allowed the Padres to score and make it 2-1, and extended the inning.  That marked the end of the day for Wood, but not the end of the misery.  Shawn Camp came in and Welington Castillo completed boxed the first pitch from Camp to allow the game tying run to score, not only was it a passed ball on Castillo, but he completely dogged it while “chasing” the ball down.  The Padres runner didn’t break right away, and if Castillo hustles they have a great chance to get him at the plate, he didn’t, and when the dust finally settled the Padres led 4-2 and the Cubs were done.  Yet again, a series the Cubs should have won, ends in a split, so very frustrating.

Borbon 5-2

At The Plate – The familiar issues were there once again for the Cubs as they tallied nine hits in this one but could only score twice as they were o-for-7 with runners in scoring position.  Scott Hairston had the big blow for the Cubs, a two run homer in the seventh that looked like it would be the difference.  Hairston finished the day going 1-for-3 with two RBI’s, said home run, and a run scored.  Welington Castillo at least had a solid day at the plate going 2-for-4 with a run scored.

On The Mound – For the second straight game the Cubs starting pitching was the story, or should have been the story as Travis Wood was brilliant.  Wood carried a perfect game through four and two-thirds, giving up a hit to Kyle Blanks with two outs in the fifth.  Wood ended up going 7.2 innings giving up three runs on four hits while walking one and striking out three, and was tagged with the loss, mind numbing.  Shawn Camp was charged with an earned run, and didn’t retire anyone as he walked the only batter he faced.  James Russell didn’t have it today either as he gave up the difference making hit in two-thirds of an inning.  Carlos Marmol pitched a scoreless ninth inning, he hit a batter, and gave up a hit, but kept the Padres off the scoreboard.

Up Next – The Cubs welcome the Reds to Wrigley for a three game weekend set.  Carlos Villanueva will get the ball for the Cubs in game one and the Reds will counter with Mike Leake, first pitch scheduled at 1:20 PM CST, weather permitting.

Cubs 5-2 box

Game Highlights:

Hairston’s two run homer
Castro’s slick play
Barney turns a line out into a double play
Borbon’s great catch
Full video recap
Castillo’s error’s

Thanks for reading,
– George

May 2, 2013 – Padres @ Cubs; Lineups!

The Cubs go for their second straight four game series win today at 1:20 PM CST.  Travis Wood gets the ball for the Cubs and he will be opposed by Eric Stults for the Padres, the weather has cooled considerably, but it’s not awful out there today.  There is a threat of rain later this afternoon, but I think they should get this one in, here are the lineups.

May 2 lineups

Thanks for reading,
– George

Feldman goes the distance to get Cubs back in win column

Cubs 5-1 line

Full Box Score

Well, how about that?  Scott Feldman was brilliant right from the start and all night long as he tossed his first career complete game and had plenty of support from his offense.  The Cubs had Andrew Cashner on the ropes right off the bat as they scored in each of the first four innings to take a 5-0 lead.  That was all she wrote for Cashner who was already up to 96 pitches after four innings, that’s what you like to see from the offensive side of things.  Feldman 5-1The Cubs were only able to manage one more run over the final four innings but they didn’t need it as Feldman was throwing darts all night long.  With a win tomorrow the Cubs could take three out of four in their second straight series, I don’t care who the opponent is, that’s a huge step in the right direction.

At The Plate – Awesome job by the Cubs at the plate tonight as the pounded out nine hits, and six runs, while walking five times.  They probably could have and should have had more, but beggars can’t be choosers I guess.  David DeJesus continues to hit as he was 2-for-5 from the lead-off spot.  Starlin Castro, getting a chance in the fifth spot today was 2-for-4 with an RBI, and two runs scored.  Julio Borbon had another solid game going 1-for-4 with a walk, and two runs scored.  Dioner Navarro had two RBI’s, Nate Schierholtz had one RBI, and Luis Valbuena has one RBI in the win.

On The Mound – It was the Scott Feldman show, as he was brilliant.  Feldman went the distance for his first career complete game giving up two runs on three hits while walking one and striking out twelve(!).  The twelve strikeouts were also a career high, quite the night for Feldman as he improved his record to 2-3 and watched his ERA improve to 3.34 on the season.

Up Next – The Cubs go for the series win tomorrow afternoon at 1:20 PM CST.  Travis Wood looks to continue his strong start to 2013 as he will face off against Eric Stults who has been roughed up in the early going this year.

Cubs 5-1 box

Game Highlights:

Castro’s RBI single
Feldman’s RBI double, he does it all
Navarro’s two run double
Schierholtz RBI double

Thanks for reading,
– George

Series Preview – Padres @ Cubs; April 29 – May 2, 2013

Padres preview

The Cubs are playing better baseball of late, and they were finally rewarded with a few wins in Miami as they took three out of four.  The Cubs starting pitching really didn’t miss a beat this past weekend as they continued to turn in quality start after quality start.  The pitching has been better than anyone could have imagined up to this point in the season.  Currently the Cubs team Padres 4-29ERA is 3.42 that is ninth best in all of baseball.  Breaking that down even further, just looking at the starters the Cubs ERA is 3.14 which is good for fifth in the Majors, impressive.  The Cubs staff should have continues success this week against the Padres as they are twenty-sixth in all of baseball in runs scored, part of that has to do with where they play their home games, the other part has to do with their sub par lineup that has been slow to get going.  The Padres pitching hasn’t taken advantage of the comfortable surroundings of Petco Park however,  as they have a team ERA of 4.39 which is “good” enough for twenty-sixth in baseball.  All signs point to a successful series for the Cubs, but they still have to execute, if they do they should be able to win this series.

Last Series:

The Cubs won three out of four in Miami over the Marlins

The Padres swept a three game series from the Giants in San Diego

Game Times and Broadcast Information:

  • Monday, April 29, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on CSN+ (Channel Finder)
  • Tuesday, April 30, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on WCIU, MLBN
  • Wednesday, May 1, 2013 – 7:05 PM CST on CSN Chicago
  • Thursday, May 2, 2013 – 1:20 PM CST on CSN Chicago

Starting Pitchers Scheduled:

Cubs:

Game One – Jeff Samardzija (1-4, 3.03)
– Career vs. Padres (4 appearances, 2 GS) (2-1, 2.20)

Game Two – Edwin Jackson (0-3, 4.76)
– Career vs. Padres (8 appearances, 6 GS) (0-3, 4.32)

Game Three – Scott Feldman (1-3, 3.92)
– Career vs. Padres (2 appearances, 1 GS) (1-1, 5.40)

Game Four – Travis Wood (2-1, 2.25)
– Career vs. Padres (5 appearances, 4 GS) (0-1, 4.21)

Padres:

Game One – Clayton Richard (0-2, 7.94)
– Career vs. Cubs (2 GS) (2-0, 0.57)

Game Two – Edinson Volquez (1-3, 6.39)
– Career vs. Cubs (6 GS) (4-0, 2.21)

Game Three – Andrew Cashner (1-1, 3.26)
– Career vs. Cubs (2 appearances) (0-0, 9.00)

Game Three – Eric Stults (2-2, 5.67)
– Career vs. Cubs (4 GS) (1-3, 5.21)

Bold Prediction:

I like the direction of the Cubs right now, I know it’s hard to say that with a straight face, but this team could easily be contending in the Central without bullpen blow ups.  I think the good vibes continue in this series and the Cubs take three out of four again.  Committed is the Cubs slogan, maybe I should be with all my positive thoughts, go Cubs!

Thanks for reading,
– George

Clutch Hitting, Pitching, and Defense Lead Cubs to Third Straight Win

Cubs april 27 line

Full Box Score

As far as team wins go this one might be at the top of the list.  For really the first time all year the Cubs put everything together for a solid victory that included clutch hits, outstanding pitching, and a handful of tremendous defensive plays.  Yes, this is the 2013 Cubs we are talking about here, and it was a pleasure to watch.  The Cubs jumped in front early again in this one taking a 1-0 lead in the first and a 2-1 lead in the second, both times they allowed the Marlins to tie it up.  The game stayed tied at two into the seventh inning and that’s where the Cubs came up clutch.  The Marlins went to Mike Dunn, a lefty specialist to take care of Julio Borbon, Borbon drew a walk, then Dunn DeJesus 4-27was tasked with retiring DeJesus, he couldn’t do that either.  With Castillo at second DeJesus smacked a ground ball base hit back up the middle to give the Cubs a 3-2 lead.  The Cubs pen did the job the rest of the way to secure their third straight win, with a whole bunch of help from Starlin Castro and his glove.

At The Plate – The Cubs finally found some clutch hitting in this one as they were 2-for-8 with runners in scoring position.  David DeJesus was 2-for-4 with a double, an RBI, and a run scored.  Welington Castillo was also right in the middle of the action going 2-for-4, and scored the game winning run.  Luis Valbuena has been in a good stretch as well, he went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the victory.  Loved the Cubs approach tonight as they walked four times and struck out only five times.

On The Mound – Travis Wood was outstanding once again in this one as he earned his second win of the season.  Wood went six innings giving up two runs on just three hits while walking one and striking out five, he is now 2-1 on the season with a 2.25 ERA.  The bullpen then took over as they shut down the Marlins over the last three innings to preserve the win.  Kameron Loe worked a scoreless inning giving up a hit while walking one.  James Russell and Carlos Marmol teamed up to work a scoreless eighth inning, surrendering one hit and one walk.  Kevin Gregg once again pitched a flawless ninth inning for his third save of the season.

Up Next – The Cubs go for their fourth straight win and a series sweep of the Marlins tomorrow afternoon.  Carlos Villanueva will take the mound for the Cubs opposite Ricky Nolasco at 12:10 PM CST.

Cubs 4-27 box

Game Highlights:

Luis Valbuena RBI single
Schierholtz with a spectacular catch
DeJesus’ game winning single
Castro’s game saving play

Thanks for reading,
– George

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