Tuesday, April 28, 2009

4/28/09 Chicago Cubs 11, Arizona Diamondbacks 3

Chase Field, Phoenix, AZ

The Cubs on the offensive we all like to see…

CUBS 11 15 0
D-BACKS 3 10 0

Phenomenal hitting stats:
Soriano 2-4, HR, 2R, 3RBI
Bradley 2-4, R
Hill 3-5, 2R, RBI
Fontenot 1-4, HR, R, RBI
Zambrano 3-4, HR, 2B, 3R, RBI
By the time the 4th inning had ended: ALL of the Cubs in the starting lineup had a hit!!

Zambrano (CHC P, 7IP, 8H, ER, 2BB, 3K) pwned this game; C. Young (ARI CF) was Big Z’s 1200th Strikeout as a Cub, 2nd batter faced in the 2nd inning. In the 7th inning, Zambrano hit his 17th career HR. Zambrano seemed to be up for hitting for the cycle, but it didn’t happen.

Incidentally, the only MLB pitcher to hit for the cycle (pitcher as a position player) was Jimmy Ryan as a Chicago White Stocking in 1888 (they later became the CUBS). What is REALLY kreepy about this is that Soriano had just broken the club record for lead-off home runs…set by Jimmy Ryan!!!

4/27/09 St Louis Cardinals 3, Atlanta Braves 2

Turner Field, Atlanta, GA

Jair Juurjens and Peter Moylan both led an impressive effort, but as usual Pineiro stole the show. Both staffs held offense down to a minimum. What started as an 8th inning rally by the Braves ended up as effective as scrambled eggs on toast.

STL 3 8 0
ATL 2 8 0

For the record, Peter Moylan is awesome. Submariners RULE, yeah!!!

I scored this game 2/21/10.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

4/26/09 Chicago Cubs 10, St Louis Cardinals 3

Busch Stadium, St Louis, MO
Game 3 of 3

Happy Birthday, Kosuke Fukudome.  誕生日おめでとう!
Fukudome-sama turns 32 today, and has a game to celebrate it.  3-for-4 with a walk, NO strikeouts, 5 RBIs...cap that off with a 3-run täter in the 8th with 2 outs to twist the knife against the Cardinals just a bit, and that's just about the best way to round out your day.

Of interesting note is the often mentioned, yet seldom seen "automatic ball" rule in application.  On the 1-1 pitch to Aaron Miles to start the 8th inning, RHP reliever Blaine Boyer touches his mouth, "which is a no-no" sayeth Bob Brenly.  This action, according to the Rules, results in an automatic ball.


4/25/09 Chicago Cubs 2, St Louis Cardinals 8

Busch Stadium, St Louis, MO
Game 2 of 3

More Cubs Cards shenanigans, even though Theriot was red-hot in this game, it wasn't enough to make the STL Skins eat their breakfast in shame.

CHC 2 10 0
STL 8 10 2

Things started well, but ultimately Marshall gave it up in the 4th inning and it was pretty much downhill from there.

I scored this game 2/20/10.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

4/21/09 Cincinnati Reds 2, Chicago Cubs 7

Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL

Late start due to rain (8.12PM EST).

Micah Hoffpauir (CHC RF) hits a homer in first at-bat against Micah Owings (CIN P) in the bottom of the 2nd inning. First time in MLB history one Micah homered off of another Micah. Hoffpauir’s 1st HR of the year (394 ft).

Top of 4th inning, Joey Votto (CIN 1B) plate appearance, 5th pitch (2-2): Delay due to a cat on the field.

Nice to see the W flag go up first game of a series, and great to see Harden get his first win and some big bats behind him to help out. Problematically, 3 innings for the Cubs ended with bases loaded – had this been a loss that would have been more than a significant finishing stat.

Nice plays:
Mike Fontenot (CHC 2B): Top of 2nd; screaming Line from Brandon Phillips, flying leap straight up for the catch.

Rich Harden (CHC P): Bottom of 2nd; fantastic SAC bunt attempt becomes infield hit and loads the bases

CIN 2 6 1
CHC 7 9 0

I really like the way my totals balanced, with only minimal effort between innings to reconcile ‘on the fly.’ I still need to work on pitching stats with charged runs, earned runs, etc…Harden was close, Owings was less so.

Looking at totals for pitches and strikes for the first time, looks like official scorer counts FT, etc. I will check on next game, but here’s what I got vs. official scorer:

M Owings 94 32 94 61
M Lincoln 20 5 24 10
D Herrera 10 4 12 9
J Burton 28 7 48 33 (WTF?!?)

R Harden 91 27 92 60
A Heilman 18 4 18 11
N Cotts 13 3 13 6
C Marmol 7 2 7 4
L Vizcaino 16 5 16 11

...a couple of games later, I did confirm to count the FT as strikes. What's still bizarre is that sometimes the Official Scorer counts 'pick off attempts' as pitches, sometimes they don't.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

4/18/09 St Louis Cardinals 5, Chicago Cubs 7

Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Game 3 of 4

One of the best Cubs games all seasons...I do love extra innings, and a walk-off 2RBI HR made this a very sweet win. At HOME even!!!

STL 5 6 1
CHC 7 10 0

This game belonged to the hitters, with Dempster and Kyle Lohse both getting banged around quite a bit. Ryan Franklin didn't have the 'official closer' card when this game was played. Great bat shankin' by Ludwick, Schumaker, and Khalil Greene's lead-off solo HR; retaliation by the Cubs courtesy of Fukudome, Derrek Lee's 2 RBI double, and Ryan Theriot's screaming triple in the 5th.

No threat by the Cards during extras, Guzman and Heilman worked that out beautifully. You could almost hear my chest cave in when Fukudome reached first on a fielder's choice, Lee flies out to CF, and then Aramis Ramirez looks at ball one, then POW...game over!

I scored this game on 2/3/10. The game was called on Fox Sports by Thom Brennaman and Mark Grace.

Friday, April 17, 2009

4/17/09 St Louis Cardinals 7, Chicago Cubs 8

Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Game 2 of 4

P.J. Walters makes his MLB debut starting for the Cardinals, and by golly he doesn't do great and he doesn't do poorly either...he throws 97 pitches in 4 innings (striking out 7), only allowing 3 ER and walking 2 batters.

If Carlos Zambrano hadn't helped out by allowing an ER per inning (in the course of 7 innings), then Walters may have been under additional scrutiny.  It's only fair to give some credit to Ryan Ludwick, who broke the 3rd inning wide open with a 3-run shot. 

The good news is, the Cubs have got Zambrano's back, and they manage to chip away at the Cardinals bullpen ever so diligently to eke out a late-inning win.



Thursday, April 16, 2009

4/16/09 Toronto Blue Jays 9, Minnesota Twins 2

Metrodome, Minneapolis, MN

At last, my chance to catch the Twins on MLB Network and they completely choke. Sorry guys, this seems to happen a lot when I catch Cubs games (the ones I miss, they win)...my wife doesn't like to watch the Bears for similar reasons, they can be up in the game until she flips the set on, then they fall apart.

TOR 9 14 0
MIN 2 9 1

The Twins were only behind by one, nice outing by Liriano just the same...they give the ball to Matt Guerrier and he literally gives the game to the Blue Jays. Ok, give Guerrier the hook and bring in Breslow...not much improvement.

Cuddyer's 2-out HR seemed to indicate an outrageous Twins rally (along with the infamous "Thunderdome Drone" from the fans) but this peetered out quickly.

Kevin Millar's great act as a Blue Jay, the unexpected Grand Salami off of R.A. Dickey (brought in to get Breslow off of the mound, ha ha!)...hope he does the same for the Cubs, maybe even when we're playing the ASStros!

I scored this game on 1/30/10. The game was called on MLBN by Victor Rojas (where's Cookie?) and Dan Plesac.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

4/15/09 San Diego Padres 2, New York Mets 7

Citi Field, Flushing, NY

First Mets home win at 'the new Shea Stadium.' 2 nights earlier, Jody Gerut's lead-off HR for the Padres was the first hit, HR, and RBI in Citi Field history.

SD 2 6 1
NYM 7 7 1

First and last time I will try to score a game on Jackie Robinson day. I'm a 'jersey number' guy; no matter what I still have theological issues scoring games on the radio for the same reason, but using position numbers instead of jersey numbers works in that situation. On TV, it's difficult to 'close your eyes' and ignore that not only every player has a "42" on their back, but when their AB starts, ESPN shows their 'real number' and then you have no choice.

Oliver Perez actually pitched a decent 6 innings, Sean Green gives up a HR facing his first batter (Adrian Gonzalez, of course) in the 9th.

I scored this game on 1/25/10. The game was called on ESPN by Dave O'Brien, Rick Sutcliffe, and the ever-annoying Joe "ME" Morgan. He was over-the-top annoying for this game, only guy I know who can effectively take a discussion about JACKIE ROBINSON (whether or not he actually started it) and turn it around into a self-centered dissertation on his career, almost as if he thinks he should be a manager.

ESPN, fire Joe Morgan!!!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

4/9/09 Milwaukee Brewers 1, San Fransisco Giants 7

AT&T Park, San Francisco, CA

The Giants totally cleaned up the Brewers in this 3rd game of the series. Manny Parra (MIL P) threw 3 great innings to start, but endured a 2-run burst of offense by the Giants led by Fred Lewis (SF LF, 3-3, BB, R) with a 4th inning lead-off double. The 5th inning increased his troubles, getting replaced by DiFelice after Edgar Renteria (SF SS) reached on an error by Craig Counsell (MIL 3B) and Fred Lewis was walked. The inning closed with 3 additional runs (all charged to Parra). Relief pitcher David Riske allowed 2 more runs in the 7th. Matt Cain (SF P, 7IP 4H, ER, 2BB, 5K) was effective; the bullpen held the Brewers down to 2 scoreless innings.

MIL 1 5 2
SF 7 11 0

The game became unforgettable when SF Relief pitcher Joe Martinez was struck on the side of the head by Mike Cameron’s line drive. The game was paused for a length of time as Martinez’ condition was evaluated (no serious injuries), he has yet to pitch again for the Giants since the accident.

(I scored this game 6/7/09)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

4/7/09 Kansas City Royals 2, Chicago White Sox 4

U.S. Cellular Field, Chicago, IL

The Royals looked great all the way through, but Thome threatened equally the entire game hitting 2-3 prior to the 8th inning, when he ripped out his first season HR with 2 runners on base. Meche was sensational, a great start but in retrospect, nobody knew how much Greinke would over shadow his 1.29-or-so ERA during this first game (Farnsworth got the L).

I scored this game late May/early June; here is the first time I started looking at LH vs. RH. I don’t know why, because in this particular game it didn’t really matter – I don’t see any patterns yet. I came up with a way to make up for that when I scored the Pirates @ Cubs game 5/25/09.

KC 2 7 0
CWS 4 11 0

Too awesome: Miguel Olivo (2-4). Teahen was robbed, walked and HBP.

Pitch count pretty much stable by now (6/4/09). I still miss a few but I don’t know if I want to count Pick-off attempts…I am chuckling at the 4/21/09 game I scored in April, at my original confusion on the pitch count. Hoo ha.

Monday, April 6, 2009

4/6/09 Chicago Cubs 4, Houston Astros 2

Opening Day
Minute Maid Park, Houston, TX

A solid opening-of-the-season outing for the Cubs, stinging the Astros on their home turf. There were some pretty solid expectations for Roy Oswalt, but a first-pitch lead-off HR by Soriano in the first sent a HUGE message and set the tone for the rest of the game, as the second opened up with a second-pitch lead-off HR by Aramis Ramirez!

CUBS 4 9 0
ASTROS 2 8 0

The Big Z showed fantastic stuff (6IP, 5H, ER, BB, 6K); as did Soriano (2-5, R, HR), Therior (2-4, RBI) and Fontenot (3-4, 2R). Miquel Tejada (3-4, 2R, K) scored Zambrano’s earned run when Michael Bourn (2-4, RBI) singled as the second batter Aaron Heilman faced. The only other run scored against the Cubs was also by Tejada, from a SAC fly by Hunter Pence (with the old skool left hand glove!). Fukudome was disappointing at 0-4.

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