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Tag: Lou Piniella

Lou Piniella Clearly Reads Bleacher Nation

Yesterday, Chicago Cubs manager Lou Piniella finally sat several of his unproductive starters, including three and four hitters Derrek Lee and Aramis Ramirez. The Ramirez benching was particularly notable, as was what Lou had to say about it: “I still cling to the fact that our guys are going to hit, but at the same […]

Praise Jeebus: John Grabow to the DL, Andrew Cashner Called Up

Word broke late last week (and then picked up steam over the weekend) that Chicago Cubs pitching prospect Andrew Cashner, recently placed in the AAA Iowa bullpen, would be called up this week. As Tom Gorzelanny was moved to the bullpen – making it a four-lefty pen – we all knew that one of the […]

Tom Gorzelanny: Reliever

The decision’s been made: Carlos Zambrano will return to the rotation on Wednesday, Randy Wells will start on Monday, and Tom Gorzelanny will move to the bullpen. Carlos Zambrano will return to the rotation Wednesday against the Pittsburgh Pirates, Cubs manager Lou Piniella said Sunday. Left-handed starter Tom Gorzelanny has been sent to the bullpen […]

God’s Wrath Watch: Jeff Baker Lost Vision in His Right Eye

Chicago Cubs utility player Jeff Baker is headed to an eye specialist for an examination of his right eye, which started given him problems late in yesterday’s game against the Dodgers. Specifically, he lost vision in his right eye. Baker didn’t react when the Dodgers’ Russell Martin lined a single past him to lead off […]

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Tom Gorzelanny Not Happy About Possibility of Bullpen Move

Unsurprisingly, none of the Chicago Cubs’ current starting pitchers wants to leave the rotation in favor of the bullpen. But of course, the current predicament is a problem of the Cubs’ own making, after moving Carlos Zambrano to the bullpen earlier this year upon Ted Lilly’s return from off-season shoulder surgery, and subsequently announcing that […]

Ryan Theriot is a Swinger

Part-time leadoff hitter Ryan Theriot hasn’t been getting on base a whole lot lately, resulting in increasing lead-off appearances for Kosuke Fukudome. So what’s Theriot’s problem? He’s not walking. At all. For a very long time. Before the first question was even uttered, Cubs second baseman Ryan Theriot said, ”You want to talk to me […]

Carlos Zambrano Available Out of the Pen

Though Carlos Zambrano is being moved back to the Chicago Cubs’ rotation, he’ll be available out of the bullpen until at least this Saturday – the second game of a critical series against the Cardinals. Carlos Zambrano will be back in the Cubs bullpen Thursday through Saturday before he is inserted into the rotation again. […]

Did Zambrano Fail in the Bullpen on Purpose?

On the conspiratorial spectrum, I probably fall on the side that tends to think if something looks suspicious, there’s a reason for it. But even I never suspected what Gordon Wittenmyer is implying in his article today about Carlos Zambrano’s performance in the bullpen, and subsequent move back to the rotation. Even after showing up to […]

Zambrano Simulates Game, We Simulate Excitement

Chicago Cubs reliever starting pitcher Carlos Zambrano is being stretched out for a return to the rotation, having thrown a simulated game yesterday. Zambrano threw 73 pitches Monday in a simulated game at Wrigley Field, his first extended outing since switching to the bullpen on April 22. Zambrano is being stretched out so he can […]

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God’s Wrath Watch: Aramis Ramirez Out a Few Days with Thumb Injury

At this point, you could almost call this mercy. Chicago Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez has been dealing with a bruise of his left thumb, though he claims it is not affecting his performance. He had x-rays yesterday, and although they came back clean, he’s still going to sit for a few days. X-rays of […]

Bobby Howry is a Leader, If Not a Pitcher

In a surprising move, to say the least, the Chicago Cubs welcomed Arizona Diamondback cast-off Bobby Howry into the fold this weekend – directly into the fold. He’s a member of the bullpen now, without so much as having to throw a single minor league pitch to prove himself. ”If I didn’t think I could […]

Cubs Set to Sign Bobby Howry Officially – Um, to Major League Deal

Contrary to my own speculation – you know, perfectly logical, understandable speculation – the impending Bobby Howry signing will not be for a minor league deal, despite his implosion in Arizona this year. No, it will be for a major league deal, and he’s expected to join the bullpen as early as today. The Chicago […]

Lou Piniella Suggests Randy Wells Will Be Bumped From Rotation

The Chicago Cubs have announced the Carlos Zambrano will be (mercifully) returning to the starting rotation as soon as he gets stretched back out. But just as when Ted Lilly returned from offseason shoulder surgery, Zambrano’s return to the rotation means that someone who’s pitching well will be bumped to the bullpen – assuming that […]

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Sean Marshall is the Man in the 8th Inning for Now

It took the Cubs a year or two to get over their obsession with handedness in their lineup – just get the best hitters out there, whether they’re righty or lefty. It’s taken almost as long for the Cubs get over their obsession with handedness in the bullpen. The Cubs will be relying on left-handers […]

Obsessive Zambrano Bullpen Watch: Back to the Rotation

As we speculated, the “move” from short relief to long relief is just a stop along the way of returning Carlos Zambrano to the Chicago Cubs’ rotation. No timetable on the return, but it will come as soon as Zambrano gets his arm strength and stamina back up. “We’ll put him back in his usual […]

Jim Hendry: I’ve “Never Given Any Thought” to Firing Lou Piniella

National media outlets started pontificating on something we Chicago Cubs fans have been thinking for weeks – might it be time to make a change at manager? I recognize that the manager’s impact on the actual performance of a team is minimal. But sometimes, a shakeup is all you have left. Maybe Piniella isn’t going […]

Obsessive Zambrano Bullpen Watch: Cubs Changing Z’s Role

All things Carlos Zambrano and the bullpen have reached obsessive status. And the saga is taking another almost unbelievable turn. I say “almost” unbelievable, because I would have thought moving Zambrano to the bullpen in the first place would have been as close to unbelievable as things could get. “We’re going to change Zambrano’s role,” […]

Lou Piniella Shows His Fire – Off the Field

Chicago Cubs manager Lou Piniella has had a long career, both as a player and a manager. As to the latter gig, Piniella has always been known as a fiery guy, prone to explosive fits – but ones that are generally cleverly designed to spark his team. With the Cubs, Piniella has never seemed the fiery type. […]

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God’s Wrath Watch: Ryan Theriot’s Elbow Still Bothering Him

You know, God has actually generally spared the Cubs His wrath this year. At least in the form of injuries. Chicago Cubs starting shortstop second baseman Ryan Theriot took a pitch off his left elbow on Saturday, and he sat out yesterday’s game against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Although the injury doesn’t seem to be serious, […]

Oh Great: Carlos Zambrano is Getting Frustrated

Chicago Cubs setup pitcher (still weird to say it) Carlos Zambrano helped hold down the Cubs’ 4-3 win yesterday over the Florida Marlins, but when manager Lou Piniella came to get him in the middle of the eighth inning, Zambrano was visibly unhappy with either the decision or his performance, or both. Aside from the […]

Jim Hendry Gives Lou Piniella a Vote of Confidence

With the Chicago Cubs underperforming, and a manager in the last year of his contract, speculation about an early dismissal for Lou Piniella was bound to start sooner or later. Piniella’s frustrating lineup decisions, and questionable use of his pitchers haven’t helped the matter. But yesterday, his general manager stepped up to defend Piniella. “I […]

Lou Piniella Using Pop Rocks When Dynamite is Due

The Chicago Cubs offense sucks. And yet, several players are hitting very well. Ryan Theriot, Kosuke Fukudome, Marlon Byrd, Geovany Soto, Alfonso Soriano and Starlin Castro are all hitting very well. That’s six of your eight regulars. So how is it possible that the offense is not scoring runs? You know the answer. Aramis Ramirez […]

Joe Torre to Manage the Cubs in 2011?

Chicago Cubs Manager Lou Piniella is unlikely to come back to manage the Cubs after this season, his last under contract. Though speculation about his successor has been limited to a stray comment about Bob Brenly here, and about the Cubs grooming AAA manager Ryne Sandberg there. Surely the team will have learned its lesson […]

Ambivalent Injury News: John Grabow’s MRI Comes Back Clean

Not sure how to react when a guy who’s been terrible, and who blames his terribleness on a certain injury, has an MRI and it shows no damage. Good? Bad? Meh. An MRI showed no damage to John Grabow’s left knee and the Cubs reliever received a cortisone shot Saturday. Grabow, who last pitched Friday […]

Zambrano is Still in the Bullpen, And is Staying There

Back-end starting pitchers Carlos Silva and Tom Gorzelanny – so dominant early in the season that moving Carlos Zambrano to the bullpen to allow the two to stay in the rotation didn’t seem insane (just stupid) – have come back to Earth in recent weeks. Not that such a return to averages was entirely unexpected. […]