July 28, 2008
W: Gaudin (6-4)
L: Hendrickson (7-8)
S: Samardzija (1)
The Cubs came back against the Marlins and Jason Marquis’ incompetency yesterday, to return to sole possession of first place before heading to Milwaukee.
Marquis de Suck lived up to his nickname, allowing 6 runs in 6 innings. However, the Cubs showed their first signs of offensive life in the last week or so when they dropped a 4-spot on the board in the 7th to take their first lead of the game. Mike Fontenot provided the bulk of that, with a pinch-hit 3-run double.
Newcomer Jeff Samardzija got his first career save, ably filling in for a disabled Kerry Wood.
Now the Cubs head to Milwaukee for a series I hope to catch a few games of. The Brewers are about the only team playing exciting baseball in the Central right now, and it would be nice to watch a baseball game that wasn’t over after the starters were announced (I’m looking at you, Josh Fogg).
July 28, 2008
W: Jimenez (7-9)
L: Fogg (2-3)
Apparently, Joey Votto was sending a message to the Reds managerial staff last week when he hit a line drive off of Josh Fogg’s face that resulted in him missing a start. Fogg had recovered enough to put in his usual “pitching” yesterday, allowing 7 runs over 3 2/3 innings. Now that’s the way to make your former team miss you.
It’s also the Reds way of attempting to not be swept by a team worse than them.
There were no offensive highlights and no pitching ones, either, although Francisco Cordero pitched a scoreless inning. When the Reds started the Rockies series, there were pie-in-the-sky rumblings about how a sweep would get the Reds back to .500.
Hopefully, that pathetic showing will prompt owner Bob Castellini and GM Walt Jocketty to use the trading deadline to load up for the future. Of course, perhaps the best way to do that would be to fire Dusty Baker.
July 26, 2008
Tonight, the first 30,000 lucky fans to Great American Ball Park will receive this bobblehead of Adam Dunn “sporting 1980s threads.” Some think the outfit is Don Johnson-esque. Others say Spencer from “The Hills.” I heard Brandon Phillips on the radio yesterday say that the bobblehead made Dunn look like Clay Aiken.
My first thought, though, was that it’s a Roxbury suit, as if fake news from 2005 is till rattling around in the Reds’ collective consciousness:
The search for the bat took Kearns and Dunn on a wacky adventure through Denver, starting at a local high-end tailor. They had apparently had matching irridescent suits made because they wanted to look â€œjust like those Night-at-the-Roxbury dudes on Saturday Night Live.â€
â€œWhat Is Love?â€ by Haddaway blasted in the background as the two tried on the new suits. That’s when they noticed the tattoos on their backs.
â€œDude, what does mine say?â€ asked Dunn.
â€œ’Donkey,’ what does mine say?â€ Kearns replied.
â€œDude, how many times do I have to tell you that only chicks can call me that, and what does mine say?â€ Dunn responded.
â€œThey fit all that on my back?â€ asked a bewildered Kearns.
They are playing Colorado, which is who they were playing when this story took place, and putting Dunn in a fancy suit with a big gold chain seems otherwise irrelevant to the game. On the other hand, the intern who came up with this idea was probably too young to be reading RHM in 2005, just as Dunn, born in 1979 in Texas, would have been too young (and Texan) to ever have worn that suit.
Looks good on him, though. He ought to consider it.
July 25, 2008
W: Gagne (3-2)
L: Franklin (3-4)
S: Torres (19)
I thought the Cardinals had this one and that the Brewers would fall to 2 games back of Chicago thanks to the Cubs earlier win. But now, I underestimated the mediocrity of Ryan Franklin.
Having watched Franklin with the Reds, you would think I would have been prepared for the homer Ryan Braun launched off him in the 9th. I guess LaRussa’s bullpen voodoo magic is wearing off.
The win was the Brewers 8th in a row and gave them the sweep of the 4-game series against St. Louis. This is the longest winning streak this century for Milwaukee, the hottest team in the Majors right now. And with pitchers like Sheets and Sabathia in the rotation, it’d be hard not to look over your shoulder if you’re a Cubbie.
The Cardinals look a little tired. At least, the pitchers do. LaRussa wants a trade, but now would be a bad time to trade away the future. Bullpen help is needed, but the best solution might be a starting pitcher who can go more than 5 innings on a regular basis. With Todd Wellemeyer and Braden Looper, the Cardinals have to use their bullpen for 8 innings every 5 days. That’s rough. If they can address that, they might hang in the race.