According to the Tribune, Kerry Wood, Carlos Marmol and Jeff Samardzija did a photo shoot yesterday for a Sports Illustrated feature on the Cubs bullpen. We ask only one thing: don't put this on the cover! That link also talks about whether Carlos Zambrano's focus on his hitting is affecting his pitching. Z says no, and I agree, but I will repeat what I said in the recap: I thought it was the wrong choice to send him up to bat for Bob Howry last night. Z does need to focus on pitching right now, not hitting.
Onward. There's a game to be won this afternoon. Note the weather forecast above: hot and sticky.
|Today's Starting Pitchers|
|2008 - Ryan Dempster||13-5||25||25||1||0||0||0||157.1||121||58||51||11||62||139||2.92||1.16|
|2008 - Chris Volstad||4-2||7||6||0||0||0||0||38.2||35||14||13||1||18||26||3.03||1.37|
Chris Volstad threw six decent innings against the Cubs at Wrigley Field on July 26, but was long gone before the Marlins won that game in the 12th inning. Aramis Ramirez homered off Volstad that day -- the only HR he has allowed in 38.2 innings so far this year. A-Ram pinch-hit last night, so hopefully he'll be able to start today.
Ryan Dempster was a Marlin for 4 1/2 seasons and won 14 games for them in 2000 and 15 in 2001, making the All-Star team in 2000. He has never started a game against them in Miami. During his career he has been tormented by Luis Gonzalez (11-for-19, 2 doubles, 2 HR, 5 walks), so look for Gonzalez to possibly get a start today. Unlike other Cub starters, Dempster has handled Hanley Ramirez pretty well (1-for-6). He started vs. Florida on July 25 at Wrigley Field, and like Volstad threw six good innings, but was not involved in the decision (a 3-2 Cub loss).
Today's game is on WGN again, so with the FSN Florida (EI) coverage, it should be available nationally. Also, the Brewers/Dodgers game is on TBS this afternoon at 3 pm CT. For the rest of today's TV games see the MLB.com Mediacenter.
As always, a reminder that you can find the overflow comment threads, including the first pitch thread, on the right sidebar of both the front page and any interior page in the box headed "RECENT STORIES IN GAME THREADS". Today's first pitch thread posts at noon CT, and the overflow comment threads will post at 1 pm, 2 pm and 2:45 pm CT.
Discuss amongst yourselves.