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July, New Month. New Beginning? Cubs vs. Reds Preview, Thursday 7/1, 1:20 CT

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The worst month in recent Cubs history was May 2006, when the Cubs went 7-22. In that month they had losing streaks of three, four, six and eight, got shut out five times, and scored one run six other times. They began that month 13-10, 3.5 games out of first place; they ended it 20-32, 13.5 games behind.

Welcome to a review of June 2010, which rivals May 2006 for badness. Though the 9-16 record isn't quite as bad as that 7-22 mark, here are a few notes about the month just ended's horrificness:

  • The Cubs were shut out four times -- all of them in the last 11 games.
  • The Cubs scored one run in five other games. They actually won one of those games 1-0, thanks to Ted Lilly.
  • The Cubs scored 80 runs in the 25 games; that's 3.2 runs per game, which is bad. 12 of those came in one game against the Angels, so that leaves 68 runs for the other 24 games, 2.8 per game -- awful. Even the Pirates, dead last in the major leagues in runs, are averaging more than that.
  • The Cubs allowed 107 runs in the 25 games; that's 4.3 runs per game, which isn't terrible; 12 of those came in one game against the Angels, so that leaves 95 for the other 24 games, 3.96 per game. That's a figure that should win you a lot of games, except when you can't score. The Cubs' 3.43 team ERA ranked third in the NL for June -- and the runs-allowed figure also points out the 46 unearned runs allowed by the Cubs this year, highest total in the league.

This month can't be worse. Right?

Today's Starting Pitchers
Carlos Silva
Carlos Silva
Cubs
vs. Travis Wood
Travis Wood
Reds
8-2 W-L making
3.01 ERA his
61 SO major
15 BB league
8 HR debut
vs. Cin -- today

W-L G GS CG SHO SV BS IP H R ER HR BB K ERA WHIP
2010 - Carlos Silva 8-2 14 14 0 0 0 0 86.2 76 31 29 8 15 61 3.01 1.05

As noted above, Travis Wood is making his major league debut today. He is a 23-year-old, 5-11, 165-pound soft-tossing lefthander, the type of pitcher the Cubs usually have the most trouble with. We are doomed.

Carlos Silva has made two starts vs. the Reds this year, both in Cincinnati. He threw very well on April 9, his first start as a Cub, but the bullpen blew the game. In the second one, which was in Starlin Castro's debut game on May 7, he gave up 10 hits and four runs in five innings, but got the win because the Cubs scored a season high 14 runs. Like most of this season, this makes almost no sense.

Today's game is on CSN Chicago and FSN Ohio. Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Reds site Red Reporter.

Today's first pitch thread will be up at 1:15 pm CDT, and the overflows will post at 2:15, 3:15 and 4 pm CDT.

Discuss amongst yourselves.