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After a rain-abbreviated (thank you!) two-game series against the Rockies, the Chicago Cubs head out West to play four in Arizona. The Diamondbacks are probably not a very good team, and the Cubs managed to take two out of three the last time these teams met.

The Series Preview hooks you up with what you need to know about every series this year – streaks, broadcast information, pitchers, lineups, etc. That way you can look like a genius, hardcore fan in front of all your friends, with minimum effort. Oh, and there will be pictures of beautiful women, too.

We’re Going Streaking

The Cubs finally fell out of their .500 rhythm, losing back-t0-back games to the Rockies after losing a weekend series to the Dodgers. I’m still not going to comment on the standings (May is as early as I’ll do that), but the Cubs could stand to actually win a couple series in a row one of these days. It’s tough to win four-game series, but the games don’t get any easier after this one.

The Diamondbacks, like the Cubs, stand at 10-13, but are coming off a series win. Against the Phillies. Before that, they were swept by the Mets. But before that they won a series against the Reds. The lesson? The Diamondbacks win series against good teams. So, whatever the outcome in this one, we can be happy!

Game Times and Broadcasts

  • Thursday, April 4 at 8:40 CT on WGN
  • Friday, April 5 at 8:40 CT on CSN+
  • Saturday, April 6 at 7:10 CT on CSN
  • Sunday, May 1 at 3:10 CT on WGN

Expected Starters and Lineups

Cubs

Starters: Ryan Dempster (1-2, 7.63), Carlos Zambrano (2-1, 5.28), Matt Garza (0-3, 4.11), Casey Coleman (1-1, 7.43)

Lineup (some guessing given Quade’s equivocation):

  1. Fukudome, RF
  2. Barney, 2B
  3. Castro, SS
  4. Ramirez, 3B
  5. Pena, 1B (Baker?)
  6. Byrd, CF
  7. Soriano, LF
  8. Soto, C
  9. Pitcher

Diamondbacks

Starters: Barry Enright, (0-2, 6.65),  Armando Galarrga, (3-1, 6.00), Ian Kennedy (3-1, 4.02), Daniel Hudson (1-4, 5.64)

Lineups:

  1. Chris Young, CF
  2. Kelly Johnson, 2B
  3. Justin Upton, RF
  4. Stephen Drew, SS
  5. Miguel Montero, C
  6. Ryan Roberts, 3B
  7. Xavier Nady, 1B (Juan Miranda)
  8. Gerardo Parra, LF
  9. Pitcher

Hot or Not and Whom to Watch

Jeff Baker is probably the hottest Cub, and hopefully Mike Quade will find ways to get his bat into the lineup in this series.

Matt Garza has given up just one earned run in his last 12 innings, but he’s still looking for his first win on the year. Of course, Garza said in Spring he doesn’t know how to pitch successfully in Arizona, so I guess we’ll see what happens.

Jeff Samardzija is working on a nine inning scoreless streak, which, like, whoa.

Not so hot? You already know: Ryan Dempster has been brutal this year. Perhaps we can all just plan that he’ll be solid for about four and a half innings, and then fall apart.

Stephen Drew has been hot ever since being activated from the disabled list a few weeks ago. He’s got a .319/.390/.522 line on the year. When the Cubs last faced the D-backs, Willie Bloomquist was manning short, though he, too, was scorching hot at the time.

Barry Enright is the Diamondbacks’ James Russell – opposing batters are hitting .340 against him.

Series She-View

The Series She-View is one beautiful woman representing the Cubs taking on another (usually) beautiful woman representing the opponent. The Cubs’ representative will change as the team’s needs change – in other words, if the Cubs are winning, the rep will stay the same. But if the Cubs’ performance calls for a change, someone new will step in. The opponent’s representative will change from series to series, at my whim. But at least she’ll probably be wearing the opponent’s colors.

Until recently, the Cubs had been represented by Brooklyn Decker. While Ms. Decker is undoubtedly insanely hot, the Cubs floundered under her watch. So the reign of Brooklyn the Terrible is over. Rejoice (yeah right). So now we’re going with a reader suggestion: ‘Modern Family’ star, and voluptuous hotty Sofia Vergara. Reader Caleb’s reasons why:

1. If you convert the letters of her name into numbers using the ancient Mayan mathematical codex, then add them up, you get 19082011. Weird, right?

2. She and Steve Bartman share the same number of letters in their name. Bad luck? Cancelled.

3. She eats black cats for breakfast (it’s customary in Columbia).

4. She stars with Al Bundy, who starred in the show “Married With Children” which was set in Chicago, with many scenes actually being filmed *at* Wrigley. (no I don’t fact check)

5. Mike Quade probably thinks she’s hot, meaning he’ll read this site more often, meaning we have a greater chance of influencing his managing decisions.

Good enough for me. As for the Diamondbacks, last time they got Brooklyn Decker, which didn’t go well thereafter for the Cubs. So this time, how about another model. Miranda Kerr should do the trick.

sofia vergara blue dress

Versus

mirranda kerr purple bra

  • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

    Whoo hoo! Yeah! Thanks, Ace!

    She’s definitely the hottest Columbian voluptuous woman currently starring in a sitcom which also stars Al Bundy. Granted, not a lot of candidates, but still.

    And yes- it’s Al Bundy. I know he has a “real” name, but he’s Al Bundy.

    He threw 4 touchdowns in a single game.

    Well, back to work. *doesn’t work, scrolls up and stares at Sofia Vergara*

    What? No… nothing. I was just… reviewing some documents.

  • Jeff

    It would be nice if Ryan Dempster stops pitching like Carlos Silva sometime soon. Otherwise, we have another 15 million dollar a year mess on our hands.

    I know it’s early in the year, but I think Quade has to look at all his options. It might seem ridiculous at first glance, but Alfonso Soriano might need to move to the 3 spot and Tyler Colvin should bat 5th, whether he replaces Fukudome or Pena in the lineup. I know he’s been just as bad with RISP, but Soriano is on pace to hit 49 homeruns, the only other Cub on pace for more than 10 is Tyler Colvin(even though he isn’t playing all the time). Carlos Pena, Aramis Ramirez, and Marlon Byrd are on pace for a COMBINED 7 homers. Zambrano is hitting better than the 3,4,5 guys and it needs to change. Regardless of the pitching, averaging 20 runners stranded every game is going to kill any team, and not having any power from the middle of the lineup is going to continue to doom the Cubs.

  • Raymond Robert Koenig

    Great article at MLB Trade Rumors. There are only 7 GMs who have been at their jobs longer Hendry. 6 of the 7 have guided their organizations to the World Series. Only Billy Beane hasn’t.

    • Ace

      Wow. That is damning.

  • Joe

    “1. If you convert the letters of her name into numbers using the ancient Mayan mathematical codex, then add them up, you get 19082011. Weird, right?”

    So we will be eliminated from the playoffs on Aug 19th this year, or am I reading that wrong?

    (stupid Calib suggestion – now I have to mark my calender and monitor this nonsense…)

    • http://calebshreves.blogspot.com Caleb

      There are several, more obscure interpretations. Here’s one:

      “Al Bundy” is really Ed O’Neil. #19 for the Cubs (in 1946) was Emmett O’Neil. Coincidence? #08 could be a reference to Mike Quade (#8 on his jersey). #20 was worn (in1970) by Boots Day, and #11 was worn by Jim Sundberg, which is super close to Ryan Sandberg.

      Reference to Sofia Vergaras’ co-star, the new manager and a dubious reference to an almost-manager, and a sweet name like “Boots Day.” I’m not sure what all this means, but it’s probably awesome.

      Think about it.

      • Ace

        I’m scurred.

    • jh

      We won in 1908, it could mean this is the year! Hey how is Demp doing, I have it on DVR…. Oh.

      • Michigan Goat

        ahh, as the tragic hero Brian once sang- “Always look at the bright side of life” … Maybe we should sing that after losses

  • Bric

    3 Signs that The Appocolypse is indeed upon us.
    1: Bleacher Nation is turning more and more negative toward J.H. and Q
    2: We’re celebrating rain outs for what they are: non-losses
    3: Brooklyn Decker has been replaced! That’s the equivilent of dropping Soriano into the 9 spot.
    I’ll be listening to the rest of the season from my hamm radio deep inside my bunker built entirely of empty Old Pyle cans (the fumes from it will hopefully chase off any marauding gangs.)

    • Ace

      Rain outs are the best kind of non-losses ever.

      • Coal

        I know it’s early, and he’s not exactly proven (despite the WS ring) but could Bob Brenly be that bad as manager? I think it’s the shadow from the broadcast booth that Q should be concerned about … especially now with Ryno out of the picture.

        Has he ever said he didn’t want this job? Maybe he has, but he’d at least be in a decent position to know the limitations of this group and lobby for some youth, lineup changes or …. something?

        Yuck.

        • Jeff

          Brenly refused to even interview for the job this offseason. It might be because he saw the writing on the wall and realized that Quade was getting the job, or he didn’t want a conflict of interest with his son playing in the organization. Or he realized how tough a position this years manager would be in and said pass.

  • Dave

    Is it 2012 yet?

    • Michigan Goat

      Remember in 2010 when we said is it 2011 yet… Aww memories

  • greg

    Is Demp’s daughter sick again? That’s the only way this complete suck makes sense to me. I hope not for all of them

  • eryk

    FUCK DEMPSTER. I WANT HIM GONE

    • Sam

      I couldnt agree more

  • Michigan Goat

    Wow, something is very, very wrong with this team’s pitching. I see a couple of things we could be learning, 1-Rothchild is as good Duncan but we placed him with managers who did not listen to him (look at how NYY is doing with a staff that should be worse than ours) 2- Riggins has no business being an MLB pitching coach and 3- Q is unable to gain control and instill confidence. Mr Rickett I hope you are starting to plan for dramatic organizational changes for 2012 and be prepared to pull the trigger this year. If we are still looking this inept by the end of May/June I hope your ready because your preparing now. I’m not saying fire everything but a good company/organization start to prepare when warning signs are going consistently… and if attendance continues once the weather warms I’m sure we will see something happen. WE SHOULDN’T LOOK THIS BAD!

  • Michigan Goat

    WTF seriously WTF Hill hit a Homer… Everyone check for boils and bloody water. Hey that’s one more than Pena and he has a better average… Guess that 800k doesn’t look so bad next to 10M… Just sayin WTF

  • czechxican

    It ain’t supposed to be this bad, this quick.

    • Coal

      Can Bob Brenly pitch?

  • Ace

    I am almost too depressed for words.

    But I guess I kind of have to use my words…

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