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Open Thread: Cubs vs. Braves, Sunday 6/10, 7:05 CT

A Short History Of Buddies:

There are, as far as I can tell, only four pitchers named "Buddy" who have ever faced the Cubs. (Two other "Buddy" pitchers, Buddy Lively and Buddy Napier, may have faced the Cubs, but there are no game logs available for the eras in which they played), and two of them also pitched for the Cubs -- Buddy Schultz, who came by his nickname honestly (his middle name is "Budd"), and Buddy Solomon, given name Eddie, who was a loose cannon -- so much so that, after having been acquired with much ballyhoo by the Cubs in exchange for Burt Hooton on May 2, 1975, he was sent packing two months later on July 22 to the Cardinals for a mediocre middle reliever named Ken Crosby.

Solomon made nine starts in his career against the Cubs, including this memorable game in which, pitching for the Braves, he was yanked after walking the first three batters of the game and committing a balk. The Cubs, as you can see in that boxscore, blew a 4-0 lead and lost the game on a 9th-inning HR off Paul Reuschel.

Which, somehow, brings me to tonight's Braves starter, Buddy Carlyle, whose given name actually IS "Buddy".

Today's Starting Pitchers
Ted Lilly
T. Lilly
vs. Buddy Carlyle
B. Carlyle
4-4 W-L 1-1
3.99 ERA 4.50
67 SO 9
16 BB 5
10 HR 1
vs. Atl -- vs. Cubs
Usually, you'd think that the Cubs facing some unknown kid pitcher is bad luck, because they usually shut Cub hitters down. Carlyle, however, is no kid -- he's 29, was originally drafted by the Reds in 1996, and has been around the majors off and on since 1999, bouncing up and down between various minor league stops. Since 1999 alone he's pitched in Las Vegas, Trenton, Wichita, Omaha, Columbus, Albuquerque, the Gulf Coast League and two years in Japan. Carlyle threw seven innings of one-hit ball vs. the Marlins last Tuesday (the only hit, a HR by Aaron Boone), then was sent down, only to be recalled when John Smoltz's start was pushed back to Tuesday:
Carlyle was driving with his wife from Atlanta to Richmond on Saturday when his cellphone rang. It was a Braves official to tell him to turn around.

"I think he got as far as Durham," [Bobby] Cox said.

Lance Cormier, who the Cubs pounded on Friday night, was returned to the DL to make room for Carlyle, who has never faced the Cubs -- the only Cubs who have faced him are Michael Barrett (1-for-3) and Koyie Hill (0-for-1).

About Ted Lilly, the only thing that can be said is that he'd better get his act together, and soon (8.82 ERA in his last three starts). His control continues to be excellent -- only 16 walks in 76.2 IP.

Even though the game is on ESPN and available to everyone who has cable/satellite, here's today's Mediacenter link anyway. Gameday (2007 version) Gameday (2006 version)

Discuss amongst yourselves.