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Cubs To Face Pitcher No One Has Ever Heard Of: Cubs vs. Padres, Tuesday 5/12, 7:05 CT

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Anyone ever heard of this "Peavy" guy?

Seriously, Jake Peavy is, of course, a good pitcher (though his numbers this year don't show it). My prediction: with the new ownership taking over in San Diego and the continued uncertainty about Cubs ownership, Peavy will remain a Padre all year -- and likely, once the new Padres ownership takes over -- for the balance of his contract there.

The Daily Herald's Mike Spellman writes today about the 1969 Cubs (and some about the 1959 White Sox, too), and quotes Fergie Jenkins on the question of whether Leo Durocher "wore the team out":

"That's nonsense. We were ready to play all the time. We had the players to do the job. Leo Durocher wouldn't have put us out there if he didn't have the confidence in us. Sure, a lot of the guys played regularly, but we had guys on the bench who helped out. Unfortunately we didn't get it going and the Mets did."

Fergie also talks about what game he thinks turned that season sour (hint: it was a bad call in NYC) and fills in some previously-unknown details about the black cat in Shea Stadium. (I don't usually mention stuff like that, but there's something new about that incident that I did not know before.)

And, Lou throws down the 2009 version of his "Throw Freakin' Strikes" gauntlet:
Piniella is looking for more than [Angel] Guzman to perform as he tries to identify enough relief pitchers on his team he can trust to have guts enough to throw strikes and endure the heat of close, late innings enough to reverse a slide that sunk the Cubs' bullpen to worst in the National League (5.65 ERA) before four good innings Sunday lifted them ahead of woeful Washington.

Piniella calls that "priority No. 1."
Today's Starting Pitchers
Rich Harden
Rich Harden
Cubs
vs. Jake Peavy
Jake Peavy
Padres
3-1 W-L 2-4
4.83 ERA 4.27
41 SO 52
17 BB 17
6 HR 5
vs. SD -- vs. Cubs

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2009 - Rich Harden 3-1 7 6 0 0 0 0 31.2 29 18 17 6 17 41 4.83 1.45


W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2009 - Jake Peavy 2-4 7 7 0 0 0 0 46.1 39 23 22 5 17 52 4.27 1.21

Jake Peavy has had a strange year. His overall numbers aren't good -- 2-4 with a 4.27 ERA, more than a run higher than his career ERA. Yet, he's also fourth in the NL in strikeouts (Rich Harden is 10th, despite throwing 12 fewer innings than anyone above him on the list). He has 10+ K's in two of his seven starts, yet his best game -- allowing only two hits and no runs in eight innings vs. the Dodgers on May 1 -- wound up a no-decision and a Padres loss when reliever Duaner Sanchez walked in the winning run in the last of the 9th. Peavy is 2-1, 2.81 in six career starts vs. the Cubs, but has a 3.68 ERA in four lifetime starts at Wrigley Field. Alfonso Soriano is 4-for-10 vs. Peavy with two HR.

Rich Harden has also had a strange year. He's struck out a lot of batters but has also been hit hard, thus the 4.83 ERA. He has never faced the Padres, and only one current member of their team -- David Eckstein, from their days together in the AL -- has faced him more than six times (3-for-15).

Today's game is on CSN Plus -- that's CLTV in Chicago, Comcast channel 285 for HD, and "check local listings" everywhere else. For today's other games see the MLB.com Mediacenter.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Overflow comment threads will post today at 8 pm, 9 pm and 9:45 pm CDT.

Discuss amongst yourselves.