In a game that felt over before it started, the Cubs slept-walked through nine innings in losing to the Atlanta Braves 4-1 Friday Night. Once again the All righty plus Rizzo lineup was very feeble with the bats, getting a meager 5 hits off of Brave pitchers Mike Minor, Darren O'Day, and Craig Kimbrel, who apparently is never going to give up a hit to anyone ever again.Justin Upton would give the Braves all the runs they would need when he homered in the 1st and knocked in Alderton Simmons (what a name) with a Sac fly in the 3rd. A Scott Hairston HR in the 5th would get the Cubs back in the game and Beef followed up with a line shot to center and it felt like the Cubs were on to something.....and then Brent Lillibridge came up......and hit into a Double play.....and they weren't. There isn't much to say here so let's put the wives and kiddies to bed and go hunting for dinner.
THE BIZARRO KRAMER
The very amish looking but jewish sounding Scott FELDMAN!!!!!!! took the bump tonight to try and continue the strong run of Cub starting pitching this year. He failed. FELDMAN!!! made it just 4 2/3 innings, throwing 100 pitches in that span. Dale tried like heck to get him through 5 as his turn was up in the 6th. But he was dead tired in the 5th, walking two and hitting a guy. Dale kept him in, somebody named Juan Francisco hit a 2 run RBI. Bal game. 53 of FELDMAN's 102 pitches were strikes. That's awful. It's 1 game. But still, first stinker. Yeoman work by Micheal Bowden to go 2 1/3 innings and save the bullpen. Rondon threw a lot of raw but hard stuff in the 8th. Interesting player.
WAY OVER YONDER IN THE MINOR KEY
Meanwhile, the Cubs offense made Mike Minor look very Kershaw-y. Which shouldn't happen because his stuff isn't nearly as good. No real good at bats. What has to be a tad concerning is just how lost Anthony Rizzo looks against lefties. His career OPS against lefties is under .600. Not good. Hairston hit a HR (making yours truly look like he knows what he's talking about.) but it was one of those HR's that wouldn't be a homer in 30% of NL parks. As Len and JD pointed out, nothing was getting squared up.
HE'S GRADUALLY GETTING AWAY CHEIF QUIMBY...
Hilarity struck Turner Field this evening when 260 +lb. Dioneer Navarro tried to steal 2nd base. You simply had to take a double take. The Braves catcher did and he still threw Ol' Dioneer out by 25 feet. Now, I just have to pray that Luis Valbuena missed a sign. But even then.....I mean....have you seen Dioneer Navarro run. Or whatever Dioneer Navarro does that marginally passes for running? I've heard of the element of surprise. But I've never heard of the element of surprising amusement.
Only thing missing from this game was a sad trombone. It seems an early April ass whoopin in Atlanta is par for the course. I seem to recall Zambrano losing his mud here in an early game... Whatever, it's just one, and I will certainly take .500 on the road. Carlos Villanueva takes the mound against Uber-rookie Julio Teheran. Teheran is the rookie that Atlanta refused to part with for anyone. Should be interesting.