I'm sure the Fox-TV crew won't say a single thing about the Milton Bradley incident on today's telecast. One of the best things about baseball is that if there's a distraction or problem one day, there's generally another game the next day so a team can take its focus and put it on defeating its opponent then, rather than looking back. That's what I hope the Cubs do today.
In the middle of everything else, Lou had some comments on Geovany Soto's positive marijuana test:
Piniella said he would have encouraged Soto to talk about the incident weeks ago but wasn't aware of it until this week.
"It really has had a negative effect on his performance," Piniella said. "It was supposed to have come out a few times, and they've delayed it, and I don't think it has done any good."
Asked about the seriousness of the offense, Piniella said: "Look, I smoked dope one time in my life, and it didn't do a damn thing for me and I never tried it again. And I'm fortunate because of that. But a lot of people do [smoke marijuana]. You can buy it [for medical purposes] in California."
Somehow, I can't picture Lou doing that. But he's right. Maybe this was weighing on Geo to some extent. In any case, he sure had a big hit the day after the revelation, and for the last five weeks, he's been hitting well. Keep it up, Geo.
On the mound will be Mark Buehrle for the Sox and Ryan Dempster for the Cubs. Buehrle is having a fine season, going 7-2 with a 3.17 ERA. Dempster is 4-5 with a 3.83 ERA while being distracted by family health worries.
Those worries may be lessening now that his infant daughter, Riley, is home. She was born April 1 with DiGeorge's syndrome, a disorder that affects her ability to swallow and digest food. Riley had spent her first 2½ months in hospitals.
"I think I've slept better the last three days than I have in months," Dempster said Friday of having his second child home since Tuesday.
|Today's Starting Pitchers|
|2009 - Ryan Dempster||4-5||15||15||0||0||0||0||94.0||85||44||40||10||39||78||3.83||1.32|
|2009 - Mark Buehrle||7-2||14||14||0||0||0||0||93.2||85||34||33||12||21||58||3.17||1.13|
Mark Buehrle is 4-4, 4.57 lifetime vs. the Cubs in 10 starts. Too bad Reed Johnson is on the DL -- he's 10-for-27 vs. Buerhle. Other Cubs who hit him well include Derrek Lee (5-for-11, 2 doubles, a HR) -- and Milton Bradley (8-for-25, 2 doubles, a triple, four walks). One thing about Buehrle -- he works fast and throws strikes. Today's game is likely to be a quick one. (Someone should have told him to stop crying before they took his picture, though.)
Ryan Dempster threw pretty well against the Sox ten days ago at Wrigley Field, but the impotent Cubs offense couldn't help him out. He'd certainly like to pay the Sox back for the pasting they gave him at the Cell one year ago today. Watch out for A.J. -- he's homered off Dempster, but that was on July 1, 2006, when Dempster was closing, a game best forgotten.
Today's game is on Fox. The other two games are Red Sox/Braves and Angels/Diamondbacks, so it appears most of the middle of the country will get the Cubs game. Complete market listing here. For other games today see the MLB.com Mediacenter.
To find out what Sox fans are thinking, visit our SBN Sox site South Side Sox.
Overflow comment threads will post today at 4 pm, 5 pm and 5:45 pm CDT.
Discuss amongst yourselves.