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The Magic Number Is One Thread: Cubs vs. Cardinals, Saturday 9/20, 2:55 CT

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St. Louis Cardinals
@ Chicago Cubs

Saturday, Sep 20, 2008, 2:55 PM CDT
Wrigley Field

Joel Pineiro vs Ted Lilly

Partly cloudy. Winds blowing from left to right field at 5-10 m.p.h. Game Time temperature: Around 80.

Complete Coverage >


Which TV markets shall I screw today? Muwahahahahahaha!!!

Who knows where the magical Fox wizard will send today's game? The other games are Brewers/Reds and Twins/Rays, so your guess is as good as mine. Site note: IF the Cubs win, today's recap will be delayed... possibly till tomorrow morning, as I intend to stick around and celebrate!

Good news: Geovany Soto should be back in the lineup today. And in honor of that, here's today's Gratuitous Geo Photo:

Go Geo Go!

No surprise here: the tarps are coming off the Budweiser house. Not that I'm an apologist for a large corporate advertiser, nor am I a lawyer, but it seemed clear that the building's new owner was trying to pull a fast one. A judge agreed:

Judge Martin S. Agran served up a cold one to building owner Tom Gramatis, ruling he didn't give Anheuser-Busch enough warning before voiding a lease agreement and hiding the sign.Attendance watch: last year's record of 3,252,462 will fall today -- total attendance for 2008 through yesterday's game was 3,218,052, so it will take 34,411 to break the record. The expected crowd today of about 41,000 should clear the record by about 6,500 and tomorrow's sellout should bring the total very, very close to 3.3 million.

Now, on to the business of winning one more game... then starting the "win" countdown over at "11".

Today's Starting Pitchers
Ted Lilly
T. Lilly
Cubs
vs. Joel Piniero
J. Piniero
Cardinals
15-9 W-L 6-6
4.13 ERA 5.24
175 SO 71
61 BB 31
31 HR 21
vs. StL -- vs. Cubs

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Ted Lilly 15-9 32 32 0 0 0 0 191.2 179 91 88 31 61 175 4.13 1.25


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2008 - Joel Pineiro 6-6 24 23 0 0 1 0 135.2 171 81 79 21 31 71 5.24 1.49

Joel Piniero missed a month on the DL and hasn't thrown well when he has been active -- in his two September starts he's got an ERA of 11.00. He hasn't faced the Cubs this year, which is too bad for Alfonso Soriano, who loves to hit off him (14-for-42, 4 doubles, 3 HR), and Derrek Lee, who's 5-for-7 lifetime (1 HR) off Piniero.

Ted Lilly, when he's not being used as a human wrecking ball, has won 15 games each of the last three seasons, including this one... a win today would give him a career high. The only downside of his year has been the 31 HR allowed, tied for second-worst in the majors. After a bad first half Lilly is 6-3, 3.30 since the All-Star break.

Today's game is on Fox. At the time this posted, the usual list of markets was unavailable. As noted above, Fox is also covering Brewers/Reds and Twins/Rays -- so I'm guessing that unless you live in Florida, Minnesota, Wisconsin or Ohio (or probably the Red Sox-centric markets which would have interest in the Rays game), you'll get the Cubs game. For other games today see the MLB.com Mediacenter.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

Here is today's posting schedule: you can find all the overflow 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 2:45 pm CT, and the overflow comment threads will post at 3:45, 4:45 and 5:30 pm CT. If the Cubs clinch, use the third overflow thread to continue... or if that one gets too full, someone open ONE FanPost!

Discuss amongst yourselves.