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Open Thread: Cubs vs. Astros, Tuesday 7/18, 7:05 CT

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Roy Oswalt has a unique distinction among major league pitchers in 2006.

He threw a complete game against the Cubs, and allowed only one run.

And LOST -- when Sean Marshall and two relievers combined for a 1-0 shutout on July 5.

Oswalt, in fact, hasn't won at all since he beat the Cubs on June 14. Since then he is 0-3 with three no-decisions, although he's pitched well in most of those starts.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Carlos Marmol
C. Marmol
Cubs
vs. Roy Oswalt
R. Oswalt
Astros
2-3 W-L 6-6
4.23 ERA 3.06
33 SO 85
23 BB 24
5 HR 11
vs. Hou -- vs. Cubs
The Cubs have, in fact, four shutouts this year -- all combined. They have ZERO complete games; the club record for fewest CG in a season is three. Other bizarre things about the 2006 Cub pitching staff: they have allowed the second-fewest number of hits of any team in baseball (only the Tigers have allowed fewer). They have the second-highest total of walks (three fewer than the Orioles) and lead the majors in strikeouts (four more than the Brewers). Despite this -- you'd think that a BB/K team would throw a ton of pitches -- they are 21st in batters faced, likely due to their 20-29 road record and not having to face many teams in the bottom of the 9th there. Also, between Cub pitchers not holding runners and Michael Barrett not being able to throw them out, the Cubs have allowed the third-highest SB total (behind the Indians and Padres, both of whom also have bad defensive catchers).

The Cubs have been pretty bad against just about everyone, but particularly against the Astros, against whom they are 2-7.

There! That ought to get you in a great mood to watch tonight's game!

Discuss amongst yourselves.