fogpog.com - Staying True To Cubbie Blue
 
Chicago Cubs
Schedule
Standings
Player Stats
Roster
Depth Chart
Wrigley Field
History
2013 Standings
National League Central
TEAM W L PCT GB
St. Louis 97 65 .599 -
Pittsburgh 94 68 .580 3.0
Cincinnati 90 72 .556 7.0
Milwaukee 74 88 .457 23.0
CUBS 66 96 .407 31.0
- End of Regular Season -
Recommended Sites
Media Friends:
AskMen.com
CBS SportsLine
Chicago Bears
Chicago Bulls
Chicago Cubs
ESPN
FOX Sports
Maxim
MLB.com
Sports Illustrated
Stuff
Site Friends:
1060 West
Chicago Cubs Blog
CNLBCB
Ivy Chat
Len & Bob's Blog
MLB Rumors
fogpog Feeds
Subscribe
RSS 2.0
RSS 1.0
Java
Add to My Yahoo!
Link To Us:
fogpog.com - Staying True To Cubbie Blue

Welcome to fogpog, the best place to talk about all things related to Chicago Cubs baseball. To gain full access to fogpog you must register for a free account. As a registered member you will be able to:
  • Participate in our forums and browse from over 75,000 posts.
  • Communicate privately with other Cubs fans from around the world.
  • Create your own custom profile filled with many different features.
  • Gain access to our free arcade providing an assortment of fun and challenging games.
All this and much more is available to you absolutely free when you register for an account, so sign up today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact the fogpog Staff.

Go Back   fogpog > Cubs Baseball > The Bleachers
CUBS Tickets Gallery Arcade FP Store Donate
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 3:55 pm
TheBenjamin's Avatar
TheBenjamin TheBenjamin is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,844
Starters should be strength for Cubs

01/26/09 10:00 AM EST
Starters should be strength for Cubs
All-Stars Zambrano and Dempster lead formidable rotation

By Carrie Muskat / MLB.com
As the Cubs count down to the start of Spring Training, we'll take a look at different elements of the team. Today's installment: The rotation.

CHICAGO -- The magic number this season for the Cubs' starting pitchers is 200.

That's not how many years it's been since the team won a World Series, but how many innings the starters want to total. Greg Maddux said his goal every year was 200 innings, not 20 wins. If a starter can reach that figure, there's a good chance he's going deep in games, and if he's doing that, there's a better chance the team is winning.

The Cubs enter the 2009 season with three starters who should reach 200. Ryan Dempster and Ted Lilly topped 200 innings last year, which was quite a feat for Dempster, who had been the club's closer the three previous seasons. He'd pitched 233 innings in three seasons, and last year, totaled 206 2/3. Carlos Zambrano came close with 188 2/3 innings. Only two of the 18 National League pitchers who accumulated 200 innings last season had losing records -- San Francisco's Matt Cain and Florida's Scott Olson.

Rich Harden, who went 5-1 with a 1.77 ERA in 12 starts after he was acquired mid-season from Oakland, will fill the fourth spot. Sean Marshall heads into Spring Training as the leading candidate for the No. 5 vacancy, created by the trade of Jason Marquis to Colorado.

Pitching coach Larry Rothschild hinted during the Cubs Convention that Harden was behind schedule this offseason, but manager Lou Piniella said the right-hander will be ready when pitchers and catchers report to Mesa, Ariz., on Feb. 13.

"If we get 25, 26 starts out of him, we're doing good," Piniella said.

OK, they don't need 200 innings from Harden, who has had problems with his right shoulder in the past. The Cubs will likely continue to give him an extra day between starts if possible, something they did at the end of the 2008 season for all the starters.

Asked if he needed another starter besides Zambrano, Dempster, Lilly, Harden and Marshall, Piniella said: "We're fine."

That won't be enough to squelch the Jake Peavy rumors that pop up every other day. The San Diego Padres want to deal the 2007 Cy Young Award winner to cut payroll and Peavy has said he'll waive his no-trade clause to go to Chicago, but the Cubs have been reluctant to add the $63 million he is owed on his contract until the ownership situation is resolved. It was reported on Thursday that the Tribune Co. has picked the Ricketts family as the winning bidder to purchase the Chicago Cubs.

"Anybody wants to see Peavy on any team," Zambrano said. "I'd like to see him here. If he comes to Chicago, he will be welcomed and it would be great."

Hot Stove
As of now, let's stick with who is on the Cubs' roster. They're motivated. Getting swept in the National League Division Series for the second straight year stayed with the players this offseason and was as unpleasant as recurring acid reflux.

"It's almost like unfinished business," Dempster said. "You feel like you played seven-eighths of a season and didn't finish the whole thing."

The right-hander did prove you can go home again as a starter, winning a career-high 17 games and holding batters to a .227 average, third best in the NL.

"I want to be a guy who the team can lean on every fifth day to do his job and not just give innings, but give quality innings and give the team a chance to win the ballgame," Dempster said.

"It's a big motivation to go out and want to have another good year and have a better chance of moving along," Dempster said. "First and foremost, we have to go to Spring Training and get out of there healthy. We have another good team and we want to go out and have fun and play hard and compete, and we'll be in good shape again."

Lilly and Zambrano will get some game action before their teammates. They both are expected to pitch for their respective countries in the World Baseball Classic. This will be Lilly's first time in the event, while Zambrano pitched in the inaugural Classic in 2006.

Having the two out of camp will free up innings so the Cubs can find a sixth man, or swing man, who can sub if needed. Marshall, eager to step into the rotation, filled that role in 2008. Among the candidates are newly acquired Garrett Olson and Minor Leaguer Mitch Atkins.

However, Zambrano isn't sure he will compete for Team Venezuela. He is to undergo Lasik surgery on his right eye before Spring Training and says he'll see how he feels after the procedure.

Big Z is eager to get things started. Zambrano would like the ball on Opening Day. It would be his fifth straight such assignment.

"Why not? I think every pitcher wants to be the Opening Day starter," Zambrano said. "I'll be ready for that."

The Cubs have made sure Zambrano is ready for the regular season. They sent one of the athletic trainers to Venezuela three times to work with the right-hander on his stretching and conditioning for his shoulder. He is coming off a 14-6 season and 3.91 ERA.

"Whatever happened last year is in the past," Zambrano said. "I have to work hard and keep myself in shape and do a good job."

The Cubs finished 2008 ranked third in the NL with a team ERA of 3.87, and they set a Major League record by leading in strikeouts for the eighth straight year. It's a strong staff that needs to stay healthy. Chicago general manager Jim Hendry recalls the 2004 team, which he felt was the best in the NL. But injuries shelved several key players, and the Cubs finished third in the division at 89-73.

Chicago appears to have the strongest starting staff in the NL Central, but there was no bold proclamation by Dempster at the Cubs Convention, no boast that the team will win the World Series. He said that one year ago before pitchers and catchers had even broken a sweat.

"We'll take one game at a time," Dempster said.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 3:56 pm
TheBenjamin's Avatar
TheBenjamin TheBenjamin is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,844
Pitching coach Larry Rothschild hinted during the Cubs Convention that Harden was behind schedule this offseason, but manager Lou Piniella said the right-hander will be ready when pitchers and catchers report to Mesa, Ariz., on Feb. 13.

thats the best part of the article
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 4:12 pm
ryno4ever's Avatar
ryno4ever ryno4ever is offline
Moderator
 
My Mood:
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: In an Illinois Cornfield
Posts: 13,683
Send a message via Yahoo to ryno4ever
I sure would have been interesting to have seen Pinella as Prior's manager!

It sounds more like a message from Pinella to Harden! LOL
__________________
Baseball season's underway...
So you'd better get ready for a brand new day
Hey Chicago whattya say?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 4:25 pm
cubs161 cubs161 is offline
Veteran
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 289
i dont know that im a fan of either marshal or samardzija starting theres got to be someone else to give a go at it but if i have to choose someone it would be samardzija with his power
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 4:51 pm
Bims Bims is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 991
Quote:
Originally Posted by cubs161 View Post
i dont know that im a fan of either marshal or samardzija starting theres got to be someone else to give a go at it but if i have to choose someone it would be samardzija with his power
I know alot of people would disagree with me, but I think Samardzija would be more effective out of the bullpen in his career, rather then as a starter. I think with his control problems, Jeff would be more effective in smaller samples. ... I think Marshall would make a very solid #5 starter. He's been solid over the last few seasons in the spot-starter role. And he's pitched well on the road. I could see him getting 13 wins next season as a #5 starter. But unless the Cubs get another lefthanded reliever, I think Marshall will be used for the bullpen.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 5:29 pm
TheBenjamin's Avatar
TheBenjamin TheBenjamin is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 4,844
I think we need his power arm in the bullpen for late inning setup
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old Jan 26th 2009, 7:20 pm
Bockstock's Avatar
Bockstock Bockstock is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 3,338
I know people would love to see Shark out of the pen, but you don't pay a prospect $10 million without even throwing a professional pitch to pitch out of the bullpen
__________________
Whether it comes from [the media] or even comes from some fans, who are deservedly upset at a given point, it's really just noise. If we let it affect our decision making, shame on us
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old Jan 27th 2009, 7:47 am
LeeEila's/rant's Avatar
LeeEila's/rant LeeEila's/rant is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Metamora
Posts: 2,531
I have said this before my rotation would be :BigZ , Lilly , Dempster , Marshall . I would pitch Harden in the fifth spot to keep his appearances down so we will have him in Sept. and Oct. . I would like to keep an ace up my sleeve for late season wins , just in case someone in our division surprises us.

I really don't see how we can pitch him elsewhere and not tax our not so strong bullpen.
__________________
Christian Morgenstern : And thus , in his considered view ; What did not suit - could not be true
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old Jan 27th 2009, 9:29 am
Bockstock's Avatar
Bockstock Bockstock is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 3,338
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeeEila's/rant View Post

I really don't see how we can pitch him elsewhere and not tax our not so strong bullpen.
I'm betting they'll do the same thing they did with Harden last year. Keep him under 90 pitches and 6 innings most of the year and give him an extra day or skip him a couple of times. Perhaps, even go with a 13-man staff during the AL-matchups

I'd still rather have Samardzija spend the first part of the season getting stretched out and working on his secondary pitches.
__________________
Whether it comes from [the media] or even comes from some fans, who are deservedly upset at a given point, it's really just noise. If we let it affect our decision making, shame on us
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old Jan 27th 2009, 9:52 am
LeeEila's/rant's Avatar
LeeEila's/rant LeeEila's/rant is offline
Hall Of Famer
 
My Mood:

Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Metamora
Posts: 2,531
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bockstock View Post
I'd still rather have Samardzija spend the first part of the season getting stretched out and working on his secondary pitches.
I am convinced he will be the closer for no other reason but that he " fits " Lou's idea of a closer. I also think Marmol will have a set back this year. I am willing to bet he won't be attacking the strike zone like he has in the past. It is almost a given thet young guns go through an extended slump.
__________________
Christian Morgenstern : And thus , in his considered view ; What did not suit - could not be true
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Tomorrow's starters VanMan The Bleachers 3 Sep 27th 2008 9:35 pm
Lous decision to flip flop starters SKIPPER 11 The Bleachers 4 Aug 13th 2008 4:55 pm
Your OFFICIAL NL Starters for the allstar game TheBenjamin The Bleachers 13 Jul 7th 2008 9:46 am


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:34 am.



Copyright © 2006-2013 fogpog.com. All rights reserved.
Chicago Cubs logos Copyright © 2013 Major League Baseball and the Chicago Cubs.
Powered by: vBulletin v3.6.8, Copyright ©2000 - 2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Limited.