Sunday, August 23, 2009

Dempster, Fox End Losing Streak

During the recent run of solid starting pitching the weak link has been Ryan Dempster. Today he gets some props from me because he showed up and pitched his butt off. His seven inning three hit one unearned run effort combined with Jake Fox's brilliant hitting gave the Cubs a much needed win.

Does this win mean anything besides it just being a win? Absolutely not. The Cubs are still a mediocre baseball team that isn't capable of beating good teams in a series. Still who doesn't like to see their team win? 

This win didn't come without a few breaks that went the Cubs way in the eighth. A groundball to Ryan Theriot could have ended with no outs when his throw took Mike Fontenot off the bag, but the umpire ruled that Fontenot kept his foot on the base. That turned a bases loaded nobody out situation into a first and third one out one.

Next Theriot dropped a flyball, but the umpire had called time before the pitch, meaning no play. Orlando Hudson grounded into a double play after that to end the inning and the threat. 

Carlos Marmol got to try and be the closer this time and he was up for the challenge. He struck out two batters and had great command. These next six weeks are huge for Marmol's future. If he can take command of the closers role the Cubs have one less thing to worry about this offseason. If Marmol struggles in the role then getting a closer in the offseason will be high on the list, especially considering there are a number of top closers on the free agent market. 

Next up is a long homestand against the Nationals, Mets, and Astros. A Cubs team that wanted to make the playoffs would win eight of those nine games, this Cubs team will probably go 5-4. 

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