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Open Thread: Cubs vs. Astros, Monday 7/3, 7:05 CT

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I was going to make a "Halfway Home" post this morning, but really, what's the point? The Cubs' win yesterday made them 30-51, which ties them for the second-worst Cub team ever at the 81-game mark (since the 162-game schedule went into effect in 1962).

Here's another stat that shows just how historically bad this year is: the Cubs have generally played the Astros well the last several seasons. This year, though, Houston has won five straight vs. the Cubs.

The last time the Astros beat the Cubs six in a row was in 1980. That Cub team lost 98 games. Nuff said, I'm afraid.

One fun note: Angel Pagan hit his first two major league HR yesterday. The last Cub to hit his first two in the same game was... Ryne Sandberg, on April 23, 1982.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Carlos Marmol
C. Marmol
vs. Roger Clemens
R. Clemens
1-2 W-L 0-2
4.18 ERA 2.38
28 SO 7
11 BB 4
3 HR 0
vs. Hou -- vs. Cubs
In general, the Cubs have done fairly well against Roger Clemens since he first faced them as a Yankee in 2003, although his numbers against the Cubs (3.16 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, .243 BAA) are fairly close to his career stats (3.12, 1.17, .229). He's 3-3 lifetime in eight starts.

Carlos Marmol threw two scoreless innings against Houston in his second ML appearance on June 6; his last start was outstanding, but he didn't get the win, as the Cubs blew a lead and had to come from behind to beat the Brewers last week. Speaking of Marmol & Clemens, when Clemens made his major league debut on May 15, 1984, Marmol was literally in diapers - 1 year, 7 months and 2 days old.

I'm very happy that the Cubs are done with interleague play, where they went 4-11. They're not alone; the NL absolutely got pounded by the AL this season. Only the Rockies (11-4) and Giants (8-7) had winning records vs. the AL; conversely, most AL teams had HUGE winning margins (Red Sox and Twins, 16-2; Tigers, 15-3, White Sox, 14-4, and even the Royals, 10-8). The Cubs are 19-20 vs. the NL Central, their best record against any division or league this year. Yeah, I know, that's not saying much.

Discuss amongst yourselves.