A League of Her Own

Chicago Cubs Headlines for Saturday, July 25

(Tribune Photo by Phil Velasquez)
Don't look now, but the Cubs have won six out of eight since the break, including yesterday's 8-5 win over the Reds. In the welcome development department, it appears as though Aramis Ramirez is returning to form.

The Cubs have won 8 of their last 11, a streak that roughly has coincided with the return of Aramis Ramirez, who went 4-for-5 Friday with a home run and a pair of doubles.
Ramirez's shoulder won't be fully healed this season, but he said his timing slowly is coming back and he feels comfortable at the plate. Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker used to refer to Ramirez as "my clutch guy" when he managed the Cubs, and Lou Piniella discovered just how important Ramirez is after watching his offense flounder with his clutch guy on the disabled list.

"That's what I'm here for, to drive in runs in key situations," Ramirez said. "And I did it today."

And let's not forget the good-enough work of Randy Wells, cubbiejulie's favorite up-and-comer:

The Cubs' attack, which culminated in a 4-run eighth, made a winner of Randy Wells (6-4). The only real mistake by Wells was a hanging slider to his counterpart, Aaron Harang, who hit his first career homer with two on and two outs in the second.

"Yeah, I made a bad pitch," Wells said. "Kind of tough there, too. The team jumps out on top (1-0 in the first) and you come right back out and give up 3."

With all the excitement surrounding a team playing well and 1.5 games out of first place, is there anything (besides Matt Holliday to the Cards) that can bring us down?

Lilly was scratched Friday from his scheduled start today against the Cincinnati Reds after experiencing soreness in his shoulder. He described it to the team Friday morning as similar to tendinitis he had while pitching for the Toronto Blue Jays.

A decision on Lilly, the Cubs' lone All-Star and team leader with nine victories, will be made today after reviewing the results of an MRI exam Friday. But manager Lou Piniella said Lilly told him it took several weeks to recover from the tendinitis problem.

Uh, no es bueno. But just remember, next week, Dempster will be back and better than ever!

In other news, it might've sounded like Lou wanted Hendry to go get some bats before the deadline, but Hendry inisist they're on the same page:

Was manager Lou Piniella putting pressure on general manager Jim Hendry to make some moves when he said the Cubs could use a "couple more bats" after Tuesday's loss in Philadelphia?

"No, I think some of that was tongue in cheek after the game," Hendry said. "We all felt comfortable we had enough bats when we left [ spring training]. We either haven't been as healthy as we'd like, or certainly a lot of guys collectively haven't hit like they can at one time.

"It's just the nature of every manager -- you always want something better than what you have if you lose that particular game. ... He didn't mean it to come out like 'me and Jim aren't on the same page.' "

Piniella seemed to back off his comment Friday morning, saying Hendry "does as good a job as any GM in baseball."

And Hendry's setting us up for some post non-waiver deadline deals:

''We'll try to do what we have to do,'' Hendry said. ''We've made some moves at the deadline, and sometimes they work and sometimes they don't. We always talk about the parity in the game, with maybe 20 teams still in it now, and they feel an obligation not to give up people. In this type of year, you might have more people available [after July 31]. I don't know if there will be that many marquee names, and, of course, they'd have to clear waivers.

''I think in spring training we thought we had enough offense. We just haven't swung the bats like we're capable of.''



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1 Comment

kiwibob said:


I'm too drunk and tired to pull an all-nighter and watch the game....
The rest of you have good news for me when I wake up sore in the morning....

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