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Open Thread: Cubs vs. Mets, Sunday 7/16, 5:05 CT

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El Duque.

See, this is what I hate most about the New York hype machine's influence over baseball.

Here's a guy who has a decent 75-57 lifetime record, with a 4.20 ERA, and who has had some success with good Yankee and White Sox teams. He's either 36 years old or 40 years old or who knows, maybe he was involved with the Castro-Batista flap. You know, Castro and Batista.

But he plays a couple of years in New York and he gets a nickname which leads you to believe he's some legendary superstar, which he is NOT, particularly with a five-plus ERA this season. Basically, he's Paul Byrd, a journeyman who's had a couple of days in the sun.

End rant.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Sean Marshall
S. Marshall
vs. Orlando Hernandez
O. Hernandez
5-7 W-L 5-8
4.80 ERA 5.12
61 SO 89
45 BB 34
9 HR 14
vs. NY -- vs. Cubs

Marshall, of course, has yet to face the Mets, since this is his rookie year and the Cubs' first series against them this year.

Hernandez, despite playing for two teams that have faced the Cubs several times in interleague play and having been with the Diamondbacks earlier this year, has never pitched against the Cubs. He has faced a few Cubs who were in the AL at one time; Jacque Jones is 7-for-22 against him with two doubles.

The odd starting time today (watch for tons of shadows) is dictated by ESPN's desire to put the ESPY Awards (which aren't even live, they were taped last week) on the air in East Coast prime time. Besides, when I first heard about those awards, I thought they were named after this guy.

Discuss amongst yourselves.