The last time the Cubs won a series in Philadelphia, the team was still playing in Veterans Stadium and the Cubs' winning pitchers (they won two of three) were named Tavarez and Bere. Interestingly enough, though there is just one man who played for the Cubs in either of those 2001 games who is still active (Kyle Farnsworth, who is currently on the DL), the Phillies still have the same starting shortstop today as they did 11 years ago, and the two losing pitchers (Randy Wolf and Vicente Padilla) are still around.
The last time a Cubs team won a four-game series in Philadelphia was from July 3-6, 1997. Both the Cubs and Phillies lost 94 games that season.
So there's that to look forward to.
DeJesus RF, Campana CF, Castro SS, LaHair 1B, Soriano LF, Stewart 3B, DeWitt 2B, Soto C, Volstad P
Rollins SS, Polanco 3B, Victorino CF, Pence RF, Wigginton 1B, Nix LF, Ruiz C, Orr 2B, Worley P
|Today's Starting Pitchers|
|2012 - Chris Volstad||0-3||4||4||0||0||0||0||22.0||24||17||15||2||4||16||6.14||1.27|
|2012 - Vance Worley||2-1||4||4||0||0||0||0||25.0||22||6||6||4||9||27||2.16||1.24|
Tonight, we see the first starting rotation swap of the year -- this should have been Jeff Samardzija's turn, but he was switched with Chris Volstad so Volstad could go on normal rest.
Why Dale Sveum did this, I have no idea. It's not because Volstad gets Philly hitters out -- they're hitting .358 (67-for-187) against him with 16 home runs. (To be fair, 10 of those 16 belong to Chase Utley and Ryan Howard, who won't be playing tonight.) It's not because he has an overall good record against the Phillies: 12 career starts, 5.88 ERA. It's not because he pitches well in Citizens Bank Park -- lifetime 6.53 ERA there in six starts.
So why did Dale do this? I have no idea. Maybe it's one of those weird hunches that works. Or not.
Vance Worley has made one career start against the Cubs, July 20, 2011 at Wrigley Field. It was a good one -- just four hits and one run allowed in eight innings. Only two of those hits -- a double by Darwin Barney and a single by Geovany Soto -- were by players who are still on the team. Worley is good. Clearly, we are doomed.
Today's game is on CSN Chicago. Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.
Today's first pitch thread will post at 6:05 p.m. CDT and the overflows at 7:05, 8:05 and 8:50 p.m. CDT. If you need more overflows due to extra innings or rain delays, post them in the fanshot section.
Discuss amongst yourselves.