|CHICAGO CUBS ( SAMARDZIJA )|
WASHINGTON ( DETWILER )
|951||CHICAGO CUBS||+125||Ov 7,-110||+125||Ov 7.5,+105|
|952||WASHINGTON||-135||Un 7,-110||-135||Un 7.5,-125|
|vs Left-handed Starters||3-6||-2.6||1-8||2.7||0.213||0.254||3.4||0.228||0.307|
|Past 7 Games||2-5||-3||5-2||4.3||0.265||0.328||4.4||0.241||0.326|
|vs Right-handed Starters||14-12||+0.6||13-13||3.4||0.234||0.294||3.9||0.246||0.303|
|Past 7 Games||6-1||+5.8||3-4||3.6||0.229||0.286||2.1||0.209||0.245|
|4/26/2013||FELDMAN(R)||@ MIAMI||LEBLANC(L)||4-2||W||100||7.5 un||U||10||6||0||9||7||0|
|4/27/2013||WOOD(L)||@ MIAMI||SANABIA(R)||3-2||W||-115||7.5 un||U||8||6||0||5||5||1|
|4/28/2013||VILLANUEVA(R)||@ MIAMI||NOLASCO(R)||4-6||L||-115||7 ov||O||7||5||0||7||3||0|
|4/29/2013||SAMARDZIJA(R)||SAN DIEGO||RICHARD(L)||5-3||W||-160||9 un||U||10||6||1||8||11||0|
|4/30/2013||JACKSON(R)||SAN DIEGO||VOLQUEZ(R)||7-13||L||-125||10.5 ov||O||11||6||2||17||8||0|
|5/1/2013||FELDMAN(R)||SAN DIEGO||CASHNER(R)||6-2||W||+105||9 ev||U||9||9||1||3||3||1|
|5/2/2013||WOOD(L)||SAN DIEGO||STULTS(L)||2-4||L||-125||7.5 un||U||9||9||0||7||6||0|
|5/7/2013||WOOD(L)||ST LOUIS||LYNN(R)||2-1||W||+120||7.5 un||U||5||4||1||7||9||0|
|5/8/2013||VILLANUEVA(R)||ST LOUIS||WESTBROOK(R)||4-5||L||+110||8 ov||O||11||4||1||11||6||1|
|5/10/2013||SAMARDZIJA(R)||@ WASHINGTON||DETWILER(L)|| |
|5/11/2013||JACKSON(R)||@ WASHINGTON||STRASBURG(R)|| |
|5/12/2013||FELDMAN(R)||@ WASHINGTON||GONZALEZ(L)|| |
|5/17/2013|| ||NY METS|| || |
|4/29/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ ATLANTA||TEHERAN(R)||2-3||L||-125||7 ov||U||10||6||0||7||6||0|
|4/30/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ ATLANTA||HUDSON(R)||1-8||L||105||7 ov||O||3||4||1||12||10||0|
|5/1/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ ATLANTA||MAHOLM(L)||2-0||W||125||7 un||U||3||3||0||2||2||0|
|5/2/2013||HAREN(R)||@ ATLANTA||MEDLEN(R)||3-1||W||140||7.5 un||U||8||10||0||5||5||1|
|5/3/2013||DETWILER(L)||@ PITTSBURGH||BURNETT(R)||1-3||L||120||7 ov||U||7||6||0||9||8||1|
|5/4/2013||STRASBURG(R)||@ PITTSBURGH||LOCKE(L)||5-4||W||-140||7 ov||O||6||11||1||7||3||2|
|5/5/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||@ PITTSBURGH||RODRIGUEZ(L)||6-2||W||-110||7 un||O||11||7||1||6||7||0|
|5/10/2013||DETWILER(L)||CHICAGO CUBS||SAMARDZIJA(R)|| |
|5/11/2013||STRASBURG(R)||CHICAGO CUBS||JACKSON(R)|| |
|5/12/2013||GONZALEZ(L)||CHICAGO CUBS||FELDMAN(R)|| |
|5/13/2013||ZIMMERMANN(R)||@ LA DODGERS||BECKETT(R)|| |
|5/14/2013||HAREN(R)||@ LA DODGERS||KERSHAW(L)|| |
|5/15/2013||DETWILER(L)||@ LA DODGERS||MAGILL(R)|| |
|5/16/2013|| ||@ SAN DIEGO|| || |
|5/17/2013|| ||@ SAN DIEGO|| || |
|CHICAGO CUBS: HITTING: 'Under New Management' is the motto in Wrigleyville, where Epstein, Hoyer, Sveum and Co. aim to turn SS STARLIN CASTRO and a bunch of straw into gold. OF DAVID DeJESUS was an underrated first pick-up. But OFs ALFONSO SORIANO and MARLON BYRD are overpaid and over the hill. C GEOVANY SOTO has lost his mojo. New 3B IAN STEWART has a lousy career OPS of .737 away from Coors Field. 1B BRYAN LaHAIR is tagged as part of a 'youth movement,' but he's almost 30. The other youths'2B DARWIN BARNEY, IF JEFF BAKER, and IF BLAKE DEWITT 'are interchangeable guys with low ceilings. Fourth OF TONY CAMPANA is fast but one-dimensional. And minor-league reinforcements are scarce. OF BRETT JACKSON is solid, but blocked in the lineup. And former uber-prospect 3B JOSH VITTERS has done nothing to justify his third-overall draft status. This rebuilding process will take time. Meanwhile, somewhere in the Chicago suburbs, Jim Hendry quietly sobs into a pile of Cubs-themed stuffed animals. |
STARTING PITCHING: RYAN DEMPSTER should bounce back from an unlucky year in which there was nearly a full-run difference between his ERA and his FIP. He's no ace in good times, but he's an underrated and dependable source of innings and strikeouts. MATT GARZA didn't disappoint in his debut season on the North Side, but he was an odd acquisition to begin with: the Cubs dealt top prospects from a thin system when all signs pointed to a belly-flop of a season. He's already trade bait again. JEFF SAMARDZIJA is moving to the rotation after a strong year in the bullpen (2.97 ERA, 87 K in 88 IP), but he needs to cut down on his walks (5.1 per 9 IP). What killed TRAVIS WOOD in 2011 was uncharacteristic wildness. His walk total spiked by over 50 percent from 2010. He's better than this, though it's hard to say how much. It could be that a 40-inning jump from 2010 to 2011 aided his freefall. Subpar newcomers PAUL MAHOLM and CHRIS VOLSTAD will also compete for rotation spots. The lefty Maholm is coming off his best season in Pittsburgh (3.66 ERA, 1.29 WHIP), but was awful after the All-Star break (0-5, 5.75 ERA, .355 Opp. BA). The 6-foot-8 Volstad was 5-13 with a 4.89 ERA for the Marlins last year, but still has time to figure things out at age 25.
RELIEF PITCHING: Because of his contract and the head-scratching faith in the 'closer mentality' that still pervades even the most enlightened front offices, CARLOS MARMOL will enter the 2012 campaign with a near-ironclad grip on ninth-inning duties for the Cubs. Trading away Sean Marshall, arguably Chicago's best reliever last season, is yet another vote of confidence for Marmol. His lack of command leads to more hittable pitches (along with tons of walks), though his ceiling for strikeouts and saves is sky-high. KERRY WOOD will be the main set-up man again after a triumphant return to Chicago last season (3.35 ERA, 57 K in 51 IP).
|WASHINGTON: HITTING: The Nats were among the eight worst teams in the majors in runs (3.88 per game), BA (.242), OBP (.309) and OPS (.691). Much of that had to do with the first two spots in the batting order hitting .285 OBP and .283 OBP respectively. OF ROGER BERNADINA (.301 OBP) and SS IAN DESMOND (.298 OBP) were the regular 1-2 hitters in the order. $126 million OF JAYSON WERTH was also to blame, batting .232 with a meager 58 RBI in 561 at-bats. 3B RYAN ZIMMERMAN also missed two months with an abdominal problem and had a down year with 12 HR and 49 RBI in 101 games. But OF MIKE MORSE had a breakout season, leading the Nats in batting (.303), HR (31) and RBI (95). 1B ADAM LaROCHE suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in June, but should be fully healed. Washington is counting on a pair of talented 24-year-olds to contribute a little more in 2B DANNY ESPINOSA (.236 BA, 21 HR) and C WILSON RAMOS (15 HR in 389 AB). |
STARTING PITCHING: STEPHEN STRASBURG is back fully healed from Tommy John surgery, but will reportedly be limited to 160 innings in 2012. That's still enough time to strike out 150 batters and win a dozen games though. In sending four quality prospects to Oakland, the Nats paid a huge price for GIO GONZALEZ. They hope he can overcome his control issues and become an elite No. 2. Well-traveled EDWIN JACKSON was also brought in to help bolster the rotation. He joins his sixth different club since 2008, but Jackson is just 28 years old and was serviceable after being traded to St. Louis last year (5-2, 3.58 ERA). JORDAN ZIMMERMANN was in the same boat as Strasburg last year, coming off elbow surgery and limited to 161.1 innings. But in that time, he had a team-best 3.18 ERA and 4.0 K-to-BB ratio (124 K, 31 BB). JOHN LANNAN remains the top lefty in the Nats rotation with a team-high 10 wins in 2011. He dominated left-handed hitters last year (.211 BA, 55 K in 185 AB), but still needs to improve his weak 1.4 K-to-BB ratio (106 K, 76 BB).
RELIEF PITCHING: DREW STOREN had a phenomenal first year as a full-time closer, saving 43-of-48 games with a 2.75 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 74 K in 75.1 innings. His role will remain the same in 2012 once he returns from the 15-day DL (elbow) to start the season. Newcomer BRAD LIDGE was limited to 25 innings because of shoulder problems last year, but he appears to be the closer until Storen returns. The Nats have arguably the best set-up man in the game in TYLER CLIPPARD, who led the majors with 38 holds and posted a 1.83 ERA and 0.84 WHIP for the season. He held opponents to a .162 average and fanned 104 batters in 88.1 innings of work. Lefty SEAN BURNETT saw a huge decline in his numbers, as his ERA rose from 2.14 to 3.81 and his WHIP jumped from 1.14 to 1.32. This was mostly due to a diminishing strikeout rate (8.9 to 5.2 last year).
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NL PREVIEW (CHICAGO CUBS-WASHINGTON) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
(DELETES reference to Nats' two-game sweep being rain-shortened)
*Cubs-Nationals Preview* ========================
By NOEY KUPCHAN STATS Writer
Chicago (13-21) at Washington (19-15), 7:05 p.m. EDT
After a rough 2 1/2-week stretch, the Washington Nationals have picked up the pace thanks in part to a dominant bullpen.
The Chicago Cubs, meanwhile, can't seem to solve their late-inning woes.
The Nationals try to extend their season-high winning streak to five when they open a three-game set against the visiting Cubs on Friday night.
After dropping 12 of 18 from April 12-30, Washington (19-15) has gone 6-1 this month following a two-game sweep of Detroit.
Relievers Ryan Mattheus, Drew Storen and Rafael Soriano combined for three scoreless innings during Thursday's 5-4 victory.
The Nationals' bullpen has been superb in May, throwing 15 shutout innings while allowing just 12 baserunners and striking out 11. Soriano, among the major league leaders with 12 saves, hasn't allowed a run in his last 12 innings, and Craig Stammen has thrown 9 2-3 straight scoreless innings with 11 strikeouts.
The Cubs (13-21), in contrast, saw their relief corps let another win slip away Wednesday, allowing two runs over the last three innings of a 5-4 loss to St. Louis.
"We just can't seem to shut anybody down in the sixth, seventh inning," manager Dale Sveum said. "We're getting two strikes on people, we just can't make a pitch when we have to."
Sveum's bullpen has a 6.75 ERA over the past nine games, giving up 25 hits and 17 walks while hitting five batters in 22 2-3 innings.
The Cubs, losers in five of seven overall, dropped to 5-8 in one-run games.
"It kind of speaks well for our team," reliever James Russell told MLB's official website. "We don't give up, and we're always in the game. If breaks fall our way, then we win a lot more games than we have right now."
That poor relief cost Jeff Samardzija (1-4, 3.09 ERA) a win Saturday. The right-hander surrendered four hits over six innings and left with a 4-2 lead before Carlos Marmol and Hector Rondon allowed four runs in the eighth during a 6-4 loss to Cincinnati.
Since winning on opening day, Samardzija has gone 0-4 over six outings while receiving 12 runs of support. He went 1-1 with a 1.15 ERA over two starts versus Washington last season, striking out 16 over 15 2-3 innings.
Samardzija must face a resurgent Adam LaRoche, 9 for 17 while hitting safely in six straight games. LaRoche, who was batting .129 before that streak, recorded his 10th RBI on Wednesday after leading the team with 100 last year.
"I like where he's at," manager Davey Johnson said before Wednesday's game. "I think he's seeing the ball better. His timing's coming around."
The same might be said of Alfonso Soriano, who hit .367 during Chicago's recently completed 10-game homestand. However, he's in a 1-for-16 slump on the road, where the Cubs have a major league-worst .207 average - including .140 with runners in scoring position.
Soriano, who hit a career-high 46 home runs and stole 41 bases in his only season with the Nationals in 2006, has hit .214 in his last eight games at Washington as the Cubs have gone 1-7.
The Nationals give the ball to Ross Detwiler (1-3, 2.50), who has a 4.50 ERA in losing a career worst-tying three consecutive starts. The left-hander has received one run of support during that skid, which includes a 3-1 defeat at Pittsburgh last Friday as he allowed three runs on a pair of homers in five-plus innings.
"I've seen him sharper," Johnson said. "He had trouble getting the ball down."
Scott Hairston is 5 for 9 with a homer and three doubles off Detwiler. Darwin Barney and Anthony Rizzo, though, are a combined 0 for 8.
Rizzo had his second three-hit effort in three games Wednesday and is batting .429 over his last 13.
|Last Updated: 10/23/2014 5:40:54 AM EST|