The Braves come to town with a great record in tote, but the Cubs counter with some surprisingly decent play of late. In case you missed it earlier, Travis Wood was indeed sent back down to AAA with a tip of the cap, and Adrian Cardenas has been called up to join the infield reserves.

Reed Johnson gets the start in left field (and bats all the way up at sixth), spelling Alfonso Soriano.

Game Info

Atlanta Braves (18-11) at Chicago Cubs (11-17), 7:05pm CT on WCIU.

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

Tommy Hanson (3-2, 3.74 ERA, 100 ERA+)


Jeff Samardzija (3-1, 3.41 ERA, 9.1 K/9)

Atlanta Braves Lineup

1. Michael Bourn, CF

2. Martin Prado, LF

3. Freddie Freeman, 1B

4. Brian McCann, C

5. Dan Uggla, 2B

6. Lawrence Jones, 3B

7. Jason Heyward, RF

8. Tyler Pastornicky, SS

9. Tommy Hanson, P

Chicago Cubs Lineup

1. David DeJesus, RF

2. Tony Campana, CF

3. Starlin Castro, SS

4. Bryan LaHair, 1B

5. Ian Stewart, 3B

6. Reed Johnson, LF

7. Darwin Barney, 2B

8. Welington Castillo, C

9. Jeff Samardzija, P

  • Mrp

    Oh hooray for WCIU games. I get to battle a blackout tonight!!

    • hansman1982

      Hooray for WCIU games – I don’t get to watch it even though I live in one of the biggest hotbeds for Cubs fans outside of Chicago.

      • Puma0821

        Are you talking about Des Moines? It’s on channel 13.3, Antena TV. This is one of the few games I can watch ( aside from on my computer). Now I’m just hoping for a rain delay as I dont get home til 8:45 PM :)

        • hansman1982

          Well then, looks like I get to enjoy a Cubs game…no wait, the wifey is home. Looks like I get treated to Gossip Girl or Veronica Mars or Greys Anatomy or if I am insanely lucky – Secret sex Life sex of sex the sex American sex Teenager.

          • ISU Birds


          • MrRobbins

            Wow… That’s kinda my night summed up about as well as could be…

  • THEOlogical

    Is that suppose to be Chipper, manning 3rd? I live in Braves country and don’t know of a Lawrence on their roster. I’ve watched all their games thus far and Freeman has been tearing it up of late. Chipper actually has been playing good, producing when he is in the line up, but their SP has been the Achilles heel of late. Let’s hope we don’t have to face the back end of the bullpen when the score is in their favor.

    • Shawon O’Meter

      Yes, Lawrence/Larry is his given name. Dude can still hit at 40…no doubt an HOFer.

    • MaxM1908

      I’m always shocked every year when I see Chipper Jones still playing. When I was about 12 or 13, Chipper used to come to my small town (7,000 people) in Southwest Iowa to pheasant hunt. It was right around the time he had helped Atlanta to a World Series win. A couple of my buddies got his autograph while he was in town, but unfortunately, I never got a chance to meet him. I just think it’s amazing to think about how young I was and the fact that he’s STILL playing.

      • Ron

        What?! I grew up in SW IA, near Harlan. You?

        • hansman1982

          Holy hell, I went to Kuemper Catholic in Carroll and we BEAT YOU GUYS my sophmore year in football.

          Highlight of our year and our football program for about 30 years was that year.

          • Ron

            Whatever, I graduated in 95 so I had nothing to do with that.

  • Ben

    I am just curious, as I am not from the area and have always wondered why do the Cubs put games on WCIU? Why not let the nation watch? It doesn’t affect me tonight because I live by Atlanta, so I am stuck listening to their crappy broadcast anyway. I have just always wondered why they put games on WCIU

    • hcs

      $$$. Plus the Sux were on WGN today.

  • hardtop

    reed has not been much of a steed this season. c’mon reed, you’re on a one year deal! you want to be selling used cars at Celozzi-Ettleson next year? No? Well you better start knocking some m’fers around. Pull up those pants, stroke that goat a few times, and rip that sucker to the gap (or the bleachers).

    “climb up on my trusty steed, gonna get high, gonna smoke some weed”

    • hcs

      Celozzi and Ettleson broke up in 2000, but I think Ettleson still has a dealership somewhere.

      Sorry, just full of snark tonight.

    • Matt3

      what reed johnson have you been watching? Im pretty sure he’s come through quite a bit so far this season

      • hardtop

        this one:
        .189 .250 .351

        as opposed to the 2011 Steed
        .309 .348 .467

        • Matt3

          how many times is that now that he’s been hit and taken a base, without showing up on that line of yours up there?

          • TWC

            You do know that HBP is factored into OBP, right?

            But the answer to your question is one.

            • hardtop

              Thank you TWC.
              I like Reed, but he has not been his best. That’s all I’m saying. He certainly hasn’t done enough to displace the 19 million dollar man on a regular basis.

              • TWC

                Or ever, really. I want to see Sappelt. Soriano can go take a hike, as far as I’m concerned.

      • TWC

        Oh, totally.  Reed’s pimpin’ a .189/.250/.351 slash with a colossal 64 OPS+.  He’s slaying ’em.

  • Justin Jabs

    With Reed we will succeed! (I hope!)

  • Patrick

    I feel Campana/Dejesus should flip flop no? I know Dejesus is a proven
    guy and Campana is just on a nice run so far, but put him at the top and let him
    run and set the table for a possible bunt which I think Dejesus can do

    • drew

      Not a good sign if your lineup is constructed so your 2 hitter can bunt the leadoff guy over

  • Rick Vaughn

    I’ve got Tommy Hanson going tonight on my fantasy team. This is going to be hard to watch.

    • hansman1982

      Ok, then lets have a solo home run by Soriano and the Cubs win 1-0.

  • morgan

    i know reed is a veteran, but id like to see one of the young guys play instead of him, sappelt, mather, jackson

  • Jay Anderson Jr

    Grilled Pork Chop(check)
    Mashed Potatos and Collards(check)
    Iced Cold Heineken(check)
    Wife in the bedroom with the baby(check)
    Remote in my hand(check)


  • ISU Birds

    Bob Brenly’s ring is beautiful. Some day Svuem…..some day.

  • magilljl

    No tv for tonight’s game. That sucks ass. Totally ruins my awesome day of Cubs baseball. Took in the afternoon I-Cubs game with the plan to watch big Cubs after. Lame.

    • Jay Anderson Jr

      Yeah, it would suck. I live in the braves broadcast region, only reason I get the game.

      • Jay Anderson Jr

        Ok, nevermind. I would have gotten it on Extra Innings, but since we’re in the Braves region, and we still have access to the game, they blacked it out on extra innings. Makes sense I guess.

        • magilljl

          But you still get to watch right? I’m trying to get my pirate on and see what I can find. So far it’s a no go

          • Jay Anderson Jr

            Try might have to pay, but I think you can watch there.

            • Lakeshot

              I have the MLB.TV subscription and it works great when I am at home in Seattle. Unless, of course, I am on a plane at 35K feet over Montana. Even thought I have inflight wifi, the MLB servers think I am in Chicago because the Wifi service (and their IP addresses) are located in Chicago.

              It’s been said before and I’ll say it again: MLB’s blackout restrictions SUCK.

    • Zach has the Cubs game.

  • Njriv

    Anyone play MLB 12 The Show? Have any of you seen the new roster update that includes Bryce Harper? His overall rating is almost 100% for a guy who has only played a handful of games, that’s incredibly overrated!

    • drew

      I havent updated yet, but thats insane. Ive been playing a franchise with full- minors…makes the game 10x more enjoyable

      • Njriv

        Same here, in my season I have Rizzo, Jackson, Castillo, Cardenas, Beliveau, and Dolis as my closer on my team

  • CubbieBlue23

    Let’s go cubbiessss

  • Jay Anderson Jr

    I wonder if Tommy Hanson just threw at Reed to welcome him to the big leagues?

  • CubbieBlue23

    cardenas please!!!

  • morgan

    ok its time to realize that barney is a backup, average defender, no power, no speed, doesnt take walks, this dude is a backup infielder

  • Jay Anderson Jr

    Back to back, LaHair and Stewart.

  • BubblesHargrave

    uh, why the hell is marmol warming up?

  • Josh Z

    Great Marmol is in. My heart rate just rose

  • BubblesHargrave

    why would dale put him in in this situation? He seriously wants him to be the closer again doesn’t he? This sucks. Doesn’t the manager care about winning the game?

  • Joe

    Why would he leave him in after two walks? Why when the second walk took just four pitches? WTF?

  • art

    Marmol should only be used when the cubs are 20 runs ahead or behind.

  • BubblesHargrave

    Is Svuem really this much of an idiot? Does he want to ruin our lives?

  • art

    is Dale in the game or was he thrown out?

  • Jeff

    I guess Marmol has to show that he can’t handle the 8th inning so Dale will start using him in the 7th inning and when he fails there Dale can move him to the 6th inning. Then when he fails there, maybe he will get traded or released.

    It’s a shame we are so negative all the time.

  • BubblesHargrave

    I really don’t care that Marmol got out of it unscathed. He should never have been used in that position. NEVER!!!!

  • Njriv

    Vintage Marmol, walks himself into danger and gets out of it

  • Josh Z

    That was a typical Marmol inning. Pitchers like crap to put himself in a tough situation then throws some good pitches to escape

  • Jay Anderson Jr

    I have to give Marmol credit for holding it together after 2 walks, but him pitching for our team is something I can do without.

  • Kevin

    So maybe Zambrano just needed out of Chicago. He currently is spotting a 1.98 ERA and has pitched 16 straight scoreless innings.

    • Jay Anderson Jr

      Zambrano was due for a huge season. I recall being the one saying he would put up Cy Young type numbers this year. I hope he keeps it. I rooting for him. Wish we could trade Volstad for him.

      • Njriv

        NO, that was probably the stupidest thing I have every read. No matter how good he is, the way he left there is no way in hell he is going to be back here.

        • Jay Anderson Jr

          I know he’s not coming back, but I would have never traded him in the first place. I not a guy who cares about attitudes. I am betting that the Marlins are laughing at us right now.

      • Can’t think of a cool name

        Lets also realize he pitched against Houston tonight and is pitching in a helluva pitcher’s park.

    • Can’t think of a cool name

      Kevin, I think you’re right on. I am (was) a big Zambrano fan but he did not have the make up to pitch in a big city. He’s under the radar in Miami with some personalities that are even bigger than his. I don’t think there is anyway he has this success in Chicago.