The Rob Bowen Era Begins, or Open Thread: Cubs vs. Rangers, Wednesday 6/20, 7:35 CT

Here's the official press release announcing today's acquisition of Rob Bowen and minor league OF Kyler Burke in exchange for Michael Barrett:

Bowen is traveling to Arlington, Texas today and is expected to be in uniform for the Cubs for tonight's contest against the Rangers at 7:35 p.m. CT.

The 26-year-old Bowen is batting .268 with eight doubles, two home runs and 11 RBI in 30 games for the Padres this season. A switch-hitter, Bowen's 13 walks have contributed to a .371 on-base percentage, 103 points higher than his batting average, and he has already set a career high in doubles, helping to a .439 slugging percentage.

In more mindless Carrie Muskat speculation, she says:
Koyie Hill has been matched up with Zambrano in three starts since the June 1 incident, and the right-hander has given up three earned runs over 23 2/3 innings (1.14 ERA). Hill, who also has caught for the Dodgers, Diamondbacks, could be moved into the starting role. Hendry said he'll leave that decision to Cubs manager Lou Piniella.
"Could be moved into the starting role"? On what does she base this? I say Bowen is the starter; whether he's ready for this role or not is still to be determined. I will say that he's done a good job handling the best pitching staff in the NL. He's caught only 3 of 26 runners trying to steal, but note that at least two Padre starters -- Greg Maddux and Chris Young -- aren't very good at holding runners on.

The deal improves catcher defense (how could it be worse?) and at the very least, removes a distraction. Addition by subtraction is, many times, a good thing.

Note for those interested: according to the active roster list at the Cubs website, Bowen will wear uniform #4.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Jason Marquis
J. Marquis
Cubs
vs. Kameron Loe
K. Loe
Rangers
5-3 W-L 0-6
3.01 ERA 12.46
41 SO 15
29 BB 7
7 HR 4
vs. Tex -- vs. Cubs
Marquis has faced the Rangers once -- but that's largely irrelevant, as it was five years ago on June 9, 2002 when he was with Atlanta; only Michael Young remains from that team. Of the current Rangers Brad Wilkerson has homered twice (in 15 AB) off Marquis.

Kameron Loe has never faced the Cubs, and the only player on the current roster who's faced him is Jacque Jones (2-for-6). So let's talk about that name: "Kameron". I'm reminded of this Monty Python sketch about a man who can't say the letter "C", and then it's suggested to him:

Why don't you say the letter 'K' instead of the letter 'C'?
Anyway, read the whole thing. But why do people do this? Why not just name him "Cameron"? Must be the same sort of people who name their son "Kyler".

Today's game is on WGN. In fact, of the remaining ten games this month, seven of them will be on WGN, including Saturday (with the Sox announcers, turn the sound down!) and Sunday, not on the original schedule. It's also at the Mediacenter.

MLB.com Gameday (2007 version)

MLB.com Gameday (2006 version)

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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