A Tragedy In 162 Parts: Cubs vs. Brewers Preview, Friday 4/23, 7:10 CT

Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has proclaimed today, the 446th anniversary of William Shakespeare's birth (yes, I am aware that this may not be the actual date, and that the calendar has changed since then, but this is the recognized observation day) as "Talk Like Shakespeare Day" in the city of Chicago.

Not wanting to miss this important observance, I present the following, in tribute, and with apologies to the Bard:

To win, or not to win: that is the question: Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer The slings and arrows of outrageous losses, Or to move arms to pen 'gainst a sea of troubles, And by so doing end them? To lose: to lose; No more; and by winning we say we end The heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks Cubs fans are heir to, 'tis a consummation Devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep; To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub; For in that sleep of death what dreams may come When we have shuffled off this mortal coil, Will the Cubs be champs? there's the question That makes calamity of so long life; For who would bear the whips and scorns of time: Soriano's hops, Ramirez's slumping, The hits of despised Card'nals, the Shark's decay, The insolence of fans and the spurns That patient merit of the unworthy takes, When Lou himself might his quietus make With a new bullpen? What could Marmol bear, To grunt and sweat under a weary life, But that the dread of something after loss, The undiscover'd country from whose bourn Z may not return; it puzzles pundits And makes us rather bear those ills we have Than fly out to others that we know not of? Thus stranded runners do make losers of them all; And thus the native hue of resolution Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of strikeouts, And home runs of great pith and moment With this regard their currents turn awry, And lose the game of action. - Soft you now! The fair Dempster! Tonight, with thy fastballs Bring us a win remember'd.
Today's Starting Pitchers
Ryan Dempster
Ryan Dempster
vs. Jeff Suppan
Jeff Suppan
1-0 W-L 0-0
3.15 ERA 7.20
22 SO 4
8 BB 1
1 HR 2
vs. Mil -- vs. Cubs

2010 - Ryan Dempster 1-0 3 3 0 0 0 0 20.0 14 7 7 1 8 22 3.15 1.10

2010 - Jeff Suppan 0-0 1 1 0 0 0 0 5.0 6 4 4 2 1 4 7.20 1.40

Jeff Suppan started against the Cubs last Thursday at Wrigley Field; they hit him pretty hard, including homers by Marlon Byrd and Derrek Lee, but -- sound familiar? -- the Cubs' bullpen blew the game. Let's hope for better news vs. Suppan tonight. D-Lee, for his part, crushes Suppan -- .426 lifetime in 54 AB, and that was his sixth HR off him.

Ryan Dempster has a 2.88 ERA vs. the Brewers in his career, which includes 18 starts and 22 relief appearances. He, too, pitched in the series at Wrigley, on Opening Day, April 12, and got the win despite giving up a three-run homer to Ryan Braun. Current Brewers are hitting .269 (47-for-175) vs. Demp with eight HR.

Tonight's game is available nationally on WGN, and also for EI subscribers via FSN Wisconsin. Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Brewers site Brew Crew Ball. But be careful over there.

Tonight's first pitch thread will be up at 7 pm CDT, and the overflows will post at 8:15, 9:15 and 10 pm CDT.

Discuss amongst yourselves.

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