Open Thread: NLDS Game #1 -- Cubs vs. Diamondbacks, Wednesday 10/3, 9:00 CT

Baseball season's underway
Well you better get ready for a brand new day.
Hey, Chicago, what do you say
The Cubs are gonna win today.
They're singing ...
Go, Cubs, go
Go, Cubs, go
Hey, Chicago, what do you say
The Cubs are gonna win today
-- Steve Goodman
"A brand new day". That's what we have been granted, yet another chance at redemption and deliverance and victory. A few notes: Having just checked the Diamondbacks website again, it appears tonight's game is, at last, sold out. I assume a lot of the tickets sold in the last couple of days were purchased by Cubs fans. Let's rock their house!!!
Game 1 Starting Pitchers
Carlos Zambrano
C. Zambrano
Cubs
vs. Brandon Webb
B. Webb
D'backs
18-13 W-L 18-10
3.95 ERA 3.01
177 SO 194
101 BB 72
23 HR 12
vs. Ari -- vs. Cubs

Game 1 Starting Lineups
Cubs D'backs
Soriano, lf Young, cf
Theriot, ss Drew, ss
Lee, 1b Byrnes, lf
Floyd, rf Clark, 1b
Ramirez, 3b Reynolds, 3b
DeRosa, 2b Salazar, rf
Jones, cf Snyder, c
Soto, c Ojeda, 2b
Zambrano, p Webb, p
The pitcher stats above are, of course, season stats. For some unfathomable reason, ESPN.com, who I have linked to all season for the pitcher's career stats vs. the opposing team's hitters, has decided to change the links to be for the postseason only -- so the links should now take you to a baseball-reference.com page. Why does it not surprise me that ESPN.com has done something fan-unfriendly?

Z did not face the Diamondbacks this season and since they have so many new faces on their roster, hasn't really faced anyone significant on their team more than three times (Eric Byrnes, 0-for-3). This could either work to Z's advantage... or disadvantage, depending. On what? Well, you know. On whether he's focused the right way or not. He was in Cincinnati on Friday. If he keeps that focus, you know how dominant he can be.

The Cubs beat Brandon Webb 6-2 at Wrigley Field on July 20; the score was made larger after Webb left the game, having given up three runs (two earned) in seven innings. No current Cub has hit him particularly well, although Jacque Jones is 3-for-8. Getting to him early and not letting him get his sinker working is the key to beating Webb. He's lost ten games this year (although he's 10-2 since that loss to the Cubs), so someone has figured him out. Since his scoreless-inning streak ended, he's 5-2 in 8 starts, but with a 4.33 ERA.

MLB.com Gameday (2007 version)

MLB.com Gameday (2006 version)

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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