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Pregame Thread: Cubs vs. Reds, Tuesday 7/8, 7:05 CT

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Next Game

Cincinnati Reds
@ Chicago Cubs

Tuesday, Jul 8, 2008, 7:05 PM CDT
Wrigley Field

Aaron Harang vs Ryan Dempster

Partly cloudy with a 40-percent chance of rain. Winds blowing out to center field at 5-15 m.p.h. Game Time temperature: Around 85.

Complete Coverage >


For those of you who are worried about the CC Sabathia effect on the Brewers (and he will start tonight at Miller Park vs. the Rockies, leading to much scoreboard-watching, I'm sure), note that Sabathia replaced not Seth McClung or Dave Bush in the Brewers' rotation, but Jeff Suppan, who was placed on the 15-day DL yesterday with an elbow problem. This makes the marginal impact Sabathia will have on the Brewers' rotation smaller. At least, that's how I see it.

At Baseball Prospectus ($), Joe Sheehan agrees with many here who said that the marginal value of adding Sabathia and subtracting someone else is about 2-3 wins.

Today's Starting Pitchers
Ryan Dempster
R. Dempster
Cubs
vs. Aaron Harang
A.
Harang

Reds
9-3 W-L 3-10
3.24 ERA 4.47
93 SO 102
43 BB 27
11 HR 18
vs. Cin -- vs. Cubs

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Ryan Dempster 9-3 18 18 1 0 0 0 111.0 88 47 40 11 43 93 3.24 1.18


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Aaron Harang 3-10 19 18 0 0 0 0 118.2 133 62 59 18 27 102 4.47 1.35

Just a year ago, Aaron Harang was one of the top pitchers in baseball, finishing 4th in NL Cy Young voting. Today, he has a terrible 3-10 record and an ERA nearly a run higher than last year's. There's no real obvious reason for this; his WHIP is up (mostly on hits, he still doesn't walk many) and he is on a pace to allow 35 HR, way up from last year's 28. That's good news for the Cubs, who love to hit HR off him (D-Lee, 5 HR in 41 AB; A-Ram, 3 in 35 AB; and Jedmonds, 3 in 32). The Cubs have beaten him twice already this year; Lee and Mark DeRosa homered off him on April 15 at Wrigley Field.

Ryan Dempster righted the ship in his last start at San Francisco; now it's up to the newly-minted All-Star to keep that going. He was the winning pitcher in that April 15 game but lost to the Reds in Cincinnati on May 5 when some shoddy defense led to five unearned runs.

Today's game is on cable in Cincinnati and Chicago and on EI and at the MLB.com Mediacenter.

MLB.com Gameday (2007 version)

MLB.com Gameday (2008 version)

Baseball-reference.com game preview

Today's first pitch thread will post at 7:00 pm CT and the overflow comment threads will post at 8:15 pm and 9:15 pm CT.

Discuss amongst yourselves.