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Randy Wells gets back in the action today, and let’s hope he’s hungry. Tony Campana also draws his first start of the season.

Game Info

Cincinnati Reds (6-9) at Chicago Cubs (4-11), 1:20pm CT on WGN.

Game Thread and Series Preview

The Game Thread lives here. You should participate in the madness. And, of course, for those who aren’t into message board-style game threads, please feel free to use the comments on this post for your in-game commentary/outbursts.

The Series Preview for this series lives here.

Starting Pitchers

Johnny Cueto (1-0, 1.89 ERA, 1.105, WHIP)

versus

Randy Wells (0-0, -.– ERA)

Cincinnati Reds Lineup

1. Zack Cozart, SS

2. Drew Stubbs, CF

3. Joey Votto, 1B

4. Ryan Ludwick, LF

5. Jay Bruce, RF

6. Scott Rolen, 3B

7. Willie Harris, 2B

8. Ryan Hanigan, C

9. Johnny Cueto, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. David DeJesus, RF

2. Tony Campana, CF

3. Starlin Castro, SS

4. Bryan LaHair, 1B

5. Alfonso Soriano, LF

6. Ian Stewart, 3B

7. Geovany Soto, C

8. Blake DeWitt, 2B

9. Randy Wells, P

  • Rob

    Hey Brett. How come we are not starting clevenger he is on a hot streak 10 for 17 and a righty pitcher is on the mound? I love the start of campana but soto can’t hit anything off speed its like having garza bat.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Gotta give Soto a chance to get on track, though.

  • Spencer

    A bit surprising that Campana is in the 2 slot. did that happen at all last season? It feels like Quade always stuck him in the bottom half of the lineup.

    • Dougy D

      My guess is that Svuem is planning on Campana bunting DeJesus over. Besides, could you really have DeWitt just take DB’s spot at second. Hopefully he can pull off the bunt unlike so many other professional ballplayers on the roster.

  • morgan

    like campana in there, now if we can just get jackson and rizzo in there, this team would be worth watching

  • al

    I hope Randy and Tony have a spectacular game today.

  • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

    If Campana can get on base, this isn’t a bad lineup.

    • drew

      Thats a mighty big “if”

      • art

        lol, agree.

  • Matt3

    “You don’t want to clog the bases.” – Dusty Baker quote on putting speed guys at the top of the lineup instead of high on base guys

    • Spencer

      lulz

    • ferrets_bueller

      How the hell does this man still have a job? Its like Dave Wannstadt…it’ll never cease to amaze me who people re-hire.

  • ferrets_bueller

    Campana should be 8th.

    • MichiganGoat

      I’d argue he should be at leadoff, if we want to see if he can handle the MLB might as well put him straight on the coals and see how he does for a couple of weeks.

      • ferrets_bueller

        Thats not a bad argument. I definitely think the two options should be 1st, or 8th. Definitely not 2nd- a guy with that low of an OBP, combined with zero power…….

        • drew

          Then he shouldnt be batting 2nd either.

          • MichiganGoat

            His numbers last year do not suggest he can cut it as a top of the order guy, but the Cubs need to see if he can cut it as a leadoff man. If his greatest skill is the ability to steal bases, he needs to be leading off and see if his OPS is good enough to leadoff. However I understand the Cubs want to keep DeJesus batting one, but hitting Campy 2 is just not playing to his strengths.

            • Cheryl

              Totally agree. Put Dejesus at the eigth spot. If he gets on the pitcher, hopefully, can bunt him along.

              • drew

                I suppose seeing if he can cut for a while isnt gonna hurt, but what you dont want to do is bat a guy getting on base over 40% of the time 8th

                • Cheryl

                  Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be too many places to put DeJesus If you put Campana first, Castro second, could you put DeJesus third? He doesn’t fit fourth or fifth in the lineup, maybe sixth and put Stewart seventh and Soto eighth. Then, whoever plays second would bat third. Castro isn’t comfortable at third. So, I’m not sure who to bat third. Or you could just swithch Campana and DeJesus.

                  • ferrets_bueller

                    DeJesus and his OBP fit in any of the top 3 spots. ideally, IMO, he’s a number 2 hitter.

                  • drew

                    Cheryl- your right, thats one of the reasons Campana shouldnt bat 1st! You dont take your best OBP guy out of the top spot just bc Campana is fast.

              • ferrets_bueller

                Are you kidding?

        • Jimmy james

          Honestly think he is a good argument for Larussas hitting the pitcher 8th…campanas speed at the top after the first time through the order but not giving him the extra at bat of being in the one hole

          • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

            He might be the rare player that, yeah, it kind-of-sort-of might make sense.

  • Christian

    Why do we keep going with other people on centerfield other than Mather who had a spectacular spring training? He should be given a chance. His average does not show it but every time he comes off the bench he hits the ball pretty well.

    • Jay Anderson Jr

      Yeah, lets give the career .225/281/375 guy a chance, but not our guys. I kills me how people love everybody else’s “trash”, but not our own.

      S/N Mather has looked good this year, but we need to see what Campana can do.

      • Corey

        Why do you want to give someone with a career slash line of .262/.305/.301 a chance then? I’m by no means a big fan of Mather, or a Campana basher for that matter. But if you’re going to use something like that against a player you don’t like, then you can’t ignore them for a player you do like.

        • Jay Anderson Jr

          Campana has had less then 200 at bats. And his line is better. Has never been given a chance to play everyday. Plus, Mather has no elite skills. Campana has only 1, but its probably the most elite in the whole game. While he’s only 1-3, his speed has put him on base what should have been 3 times.

          • ty

            Jay–as I commented last week the great Maury Wills emtionally related to me the minor league struggle in his career because he was just as weak at hitting as Tony. But pull up his career stats after finally getting playing time.

          • Corey

            Had a feeling you would go to the at bats argument, but that also doesn’t hold much weight. Mather has had almost double the at bats over their careers, which really doesn’t mean much when dealing with such low numbers.

            Compare the years where they had a similar number at bats. Campana: .259/.303/.301. Mather: .241/.306/.474. That slugging percentage alone makes Mather’s line much better. Mather has not had a chance to play every day either, and he seems to play better with more at bats based on his stats.

            Again, I’m not arguing that Mather should play more and/or that Campana should not play at all. There’s just no reason to bring up Mather’s limited (poor) statistics in the majors and say that he shouldn’t be given a chance because you want another player with limited (poor) statistics to play instead.

  • nkniacc13

    Im tired of seeing Dewitt play get rid of him soon please

    • Dougy D

      I second that motion

      • Njriv

        bring up Cardenas

  • djriz

    If, big if, Campana gets on base, will that effect Castro in anyway? Is Castro patient enough to give Campana a chance to steal? Does Castro hit fastballs considerably better than off speed stuff? These should be considered, don’t you think. You CANT do anything to hurt your best hitter, can you?

  • Jay Anderson Jr

    Why is Campy hitting behind Dejesus. Anywho, glad to see 2 guys who should have been here from the start.

    • hardtop

      Really? Wells had an era of 10 in the minors. Volstad has had one bad game. I think its clear after 31 first inning pitches, wells is a no 6, even on this staff. And if campana has belonged in the big leagues all along, why isn’t he starting in Boston right now. Really jay, you’re relentless. Just because they came up with the cubs it doesn’t mean they’re good, in fact, statistically, it probably means they’re bad.

      • Jay Anderson Jr

        Really. 1 bad start. Absolutely not. He has had exactly 0 non-bad starts. He is garbage. Wells was upset because he was sent down. If Volstad was pitching in that first, he would have given up five runs. And, did you not just see Campy’s hit. That an out for any other player on this team.

        • http://www.bleachernation.com Luke

          So… a quality start is considered bad?

          Volstad’s start April 14th in Saint Louis counts as a quality start.

          • ferrets_bueller

            Dont even bother, its pointless to argue anything with him.

          • Jay Anderson Jr

            Wow. Qaulity start. 6 innings and 3 runs will get you a quality start, but over the course of a season, that’s a 4.50 ERA. You consider that qaulity.

        • Shawon O’Meter

          Wow, you take great pleasure in always being right! I think all of Bleacher Nation should get on one knee and recite Bob Brenly’s sage advice to Jay Anderson Jr.: Yes dear, you’re right, I’m sorry. ;)

          • Jay Anderson Jr

            No. I said Volstad would suck, and he has. I said Campy would be useful as a starter, only 3 at-bats, but he’e looking good. Wells, we’ll see after the game. I said Johnson serve no purpose on this team, and really, what’s has he done. Those are the 4 things I’ve been adamant about, and so far, there is no one who can say I’ve been wrong.

          • ferrets_bueller

            Have I ever mentioned that I love Brenly? Because I love Brenly. I half want him to be the Cubs manager in 2014, half want him to never leave the Cubs broadcast booth.

        • hardtop

          Volstad is a number 5 starter in the 4 hole, and probably not in the rotation on most teams. My expectations match his ability/slot. By those standards he’s been doing his job, plus some, though it’s too early to tell for sure. My guess is hell suck, just like the rest of the team. I’m just saying its not the biggest crime that he made the rotation instead of wells. They’re the same guy.
          As for campana, you’re right, and I’m fine with that. It’s like winning a game with Tim Tebow.

          • Jay Anderson Jr

            I’m not saying Wells is a great pitcher, just that he better then Volstad. Age doesn’t change that. You shouldn’t bring in a guy, and give him another man spot because he’s younger. And Definitely not when he a horrible pitcher.

  • Jeff

    Watching Wells pitch is proving brutal on the eyes. He keeps nibbling instead of throwing strikes and then when he gets behind he throws them the get me over pitch they are all waiting on. Ugh!!!

    He’s so tentative you can see the fear on the TV screen.

  • Jeff

    Thanks Sori, the frustration continues…but with Byrd gone, only two more to go!! Praying that someones’ DH or left fielder goes down and the same for a catcher. Soriano and Soto got to GoGo!!

  • Jeff

    Soto looks completely lost at the plate!! Dewitt was not much better.

  • ty

    Randy Wells throws pitches that just to be very fundamental–they spin like a top. It is so damn cold that it like trying to spin an ice cube. Soto setting up outside too much-Wells needs to throw it right down the middle and then hopefully the ball has movement for the corners.

  • Papa Bear

    Getting more impressed with Lahair all the time nice at-bat

  • Jeff

    My new revised line-up, please try this Dale.

    1. Campana CF
    2. DeJesus RF
    3. Castro SS
    4. Stewart 3B
    5. Lahair 1B
    6. Soriano LF (until traded)
    7. Clevenger C
    8. Barney 2B
    9. Pitcher

    • ferrets_bueller

      I like it, if you have to play campana.

  • nkniacc13

    I just don’t see Srano gettng traded until atleast this offeason no matter how much the Cubs are willing to eat of the contract

    • Jeff

      Hey, don’t dash my dreams, they’re all I have :)

  • ryan

    We’re only 2 weeks removed from spring training and cubs have already forgotten how to defend a bunt. I think rodrigo lopez doesn’t think he should field any balls or even chase them, and i think our 1b and 3b think they arent supposed to go after balls down their lines, apparently fat geo is just supposed to run up both lines and throw the ball away

    • ty

      Who really believes this team is improved with fielding fundamentals.? It is not like the coaches ignored them this spring. So it is the Players!

      • Jeff

        Stewart’s fielding of that dribbler to 3rd base was way better than Ramirez, I don’t expect gold glove defense from Lahair.

        That being said, Lopez hasn’t done much to warrant him taking a spot on the roster and Soto looks pretty lost out there.

    • ferrets_bueller

      that one wasnt on Stewart at all.

  • Jeff

    Soriano looks horrible, back to his usual ways. Doesn’t he even know the where the plate is? That pitch was 8″ outside, pathetic!!!

  • ryan

    You don’t have to be a gold glove first baseman to understand that on a sacrifice bunt situation, the 2b is covering first, so when there is a ball down the first base line, come get the ball… also great move by svuem with the double switch of taking down lahair, instead of, oh i dont know take down soriano and put lahair in left?!?!

    • Jeff

      I don’t think the defense would be much worse if you replaced Soriano and I’m sure the offense would improve.

  • cubzfann

    Why pinch hit for LaHair? Why not Sori or Stewart? That just seems like a bad move.

  • Cheryl

    You take down your power hitter in LaHair. Why? Is he hurt? Seems strange when the game is so close.

    • Jimmy james

      I thought it was bc they figured Marshall would neutralize him, of course we end up with two lefties facing him in the ninth anyway

  • ferrets_bueller

    that was an absolutely horrible called 3rd strike.

  • Jeff

    Making our way to the #1 pick, one loss at a time :)

    • ferrets_bueller

      Still in 1st place, so far, so good!

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