Cubs “tie” the series against the Astros: PPD-W-L
Cubs Series Record: 6-4-3 (21-15 overall)
Wow, the Astros are old. Really old. Cloris Leachman Old. But even with their monophones, wooden teeth and folksy racism, these old bastards managed to salvage a split from the Cubs, one that could have easily been taken by the Cubs had mother nature decided that the Chicago area needed more rain than than an Alanis Morisette song about irony. [ed. note: That entire song is made up of coincidences, not irony. Irony is throwing away ten thousand spoons then discovering you need one and don’t have it. America, let’s working on using irony appropriately.]
I don’t know about other Cubs fans, but this season so far has been strange beyond all belief. I feel as though the Cubs are playing like crap, but they are still near the top of the N.L. record wise. The struggling play glares more when you consider three other teams in the division are playing at the same level the Cubs are (Cincy, the Lou and Ill-Mil) but really with all of the injured/struggling players it seems pretty impressive too. Are the Cubs good or are they bad? Right now, I’m not sure.
Through intense research and analysis (guess-work) I have decided that if the Cubs are to make the playoffs the bullpen must pitch at a B average for the entire season. So, in order to determine if there is any accuracy in this statement I am chronicling the work of the Cubs’ pen.
Saturday: D. Kevin Gregg imploded like a dying star to the tune of 0 IP, 4 H, 4 ER and 2 HR. The only reason this is a D and not an F is because he didn’t allow the Astros to take the lead. But just as your parents wanted to lock you in the storage closet when you brought home Ds on your tests, Lou Piniella wants to beat Kevin Gregg with a sack of oranges I assume. Also, way to Blow Randy Wells’ first major league victory, jerks.
Sunday: C. 2R surrendered by Luis Ascanio pretty much made sure this was a lead the Cubs weren’t going to over come, but Neal Cotts did pitch an inning of scoreless relief, so that’s pretty amazing. It’s too bad he used up his “one good inning a month” card in a loss.
Bullpen season GPA: 2.62(B-/C+) GPA through 36 games. This is the first time I’ve ever kept track of a team’s bullpen in such a manner, but it looks like that 2.60 area is where the Cubs bullpen could be the whole season.
Hero/Goat season leaders:
When it comes to team MVP, people usually stick with the numbers. But at the end of the season, I want to know which player had a direct impact on the outcome of the game the most. To name my Cub season MVP (and LVP), I am keeping track of the game’s heroes and goats in order to determine a winner. Usually it is one game, one hero/goat, but that is by no means a written-in-stone rule.
Saturday’s Hero: Alfonso Soriano. Soriano went 2-5 with the game-winning RBI, a soft single into shallow right.
Sunday’s Goat: Milton Bradley, Geovany Soto and Mike Fontenot. In a game where the win was within reach the entire time, the 5-6-7 hitters cannot go 2-12 with 11 LOB, especially 5-6-7 hitters who all hit over .280 last year.
Hero Squad: Number is games chosen as hero/goat.
2 – Fukudome, Johnson, Lilly, Ramirez, Theriot, Zambrano
1 – Bradley, Fontenot, Gregg, Guzman, Harden, Lee, Marmol, Scales, Soto
3 – Bradley, Patton
2 – Fontenot, Cotts
1 – Fox, Gregg, Harden, Heilman, Hoffpauir, Samardzija, Soto
Up next: St. Louis. Three games. Busch Stadium. Ugh.