Thursday, April 08, 2004

The life of a Cubs fab -

Isn't it just peachy that Shawn Estes pitched a 7 inning 2 hit gem and beat Randy Johnson in his Season debut as the Rockies number #1 starter?! Now that Shawn has left the Cubs, he is free to reach his maximum potential (which after watching him last year isn't much) and post as many wins as possible - Go Shawn!!! :-/

Borowski's velocity -
JoeBo apparently is down from the low 90's to the high 80's as everyone knows (it was widely reported that his fast ball was registering 88-89 mph in Spring Training). And yet even 89 mph may too ambitious at this point - In the Cubs opener he didn't throw anything above 88 mph. Yes I know he got the job done but don't forget - it was against the lower part of the order of a mediocre Reds team. I could be wrong about this, but JoeBo may in fact be Rod Beck's evil twin this year.

Yesterday's offensive futility -
We were all extremely frustrated with the reappearance of the 2003 Cubs offense yesterday and I made a sarcastic comment about Paul Wilson not being that exceptional of a pitcher. Well he's not, but on the other hand - he does appear to have the Cubs number. Prior to yesterday's game - Alou was 1/9 lifetime against Wilson, Grudzy was 1/12, Gonzo was 4/19, and Derrek Lee was 1/10. I didn't see that until after the fact, and it was an ominous portent of the day's offensive struggles.

Concerning the game today against the Reds -
Will it be another day of offensive futility? I hope not, but Sosa is 1/8 against Acevedo and Patterson is 1/7 against him. Maybe Aramis can get the bat going since at least he is 5/11 lifetime against Avecedo. I am hoping Matt Clement can snap out of his Spring Training slump. The Official Cubs web site reminded us today of Clement's horrible ST:

Clement was 0-3 with an 8.84 ERA in six Cactus League appearances, giving up 27 hits and walking 12 over 18 1/3 innings. Not exactly an impressive tuneup. But the good news is the right-hander rediscovered his slider this spring. Now he needs to feel comfortable with the rest of his repertoire.

Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that this Cincinnati lineup has had relative success againt Clement:

Adam Dunn has hit .353 (6-for-17) with a double, home run and two RBIs against Clement throughout his career. ... Jason LaRue has four hits, including a pair of doubles, in 10 at-bats against the right-hander. LaRue has also fanned against him five times. ... Barry Larkin has gone 5-for-16 with a home run and two RBIs against Clement.

Oy Vey!