We have a whole bunch of stuff to get to, including a different looking lineup, some stats and minor-league notes. Lou got the morning off from the media. GM Jim Hendry was down on the field. Nobody asked him to give Lou the dreaded “vote of confidence,” but Jim stood up for his manager nonetheless.
“I don’t think any of us would think we should be 5 or 6 games under .500,” Jim said. “Nobody expected that. Nobody saw it coming. That’s where we’re at after 30-some games, and we got 128 left. We just got to get through it. We’ve been there before. Lou’s the right guy to bring us out of it. The staff is working hard. There’s nothing wrong with the coaching staff. Nobody can tell me we don’t have good enough positions player to swing the bat better than we have.”
Ryan Theriot has a tight right hamstring, so he has the day off. The Cubs say it’s nothing serious. The lineup:
Struggling Aramis Ramirez gets the day off, too, and Soto gets moved up in the order, as does Castro. Still no Tyler Colvin. We’ll get the APB put out on him. I’m not sure I get this. I would think he needs some at-bats.
The Cubs enter the day with the Nos. 6-9 hitters in the NL in batting average: Byrd (.336), Theriot (.329), Soriano (.327) and Fukudome (.326).
Cubs outfielders have an OPS of .969, tops in the majors. The outfielders’ slugging percentage of .590 also is tops in the big leagues. Last year, Cubs outfielders had an OPS of .759.
In the Cubs’ 14 wins, the team has a hitting line of .331/.404/.584, scoring 7.8 runs per game and 2 homers per game. The pitchers have an ERA of 3.26 in the wins.
In the 20 losses, the team is hitting .226/.293/.315, with 2.4 runs per game and 0.4 homers. The pitchers have an ERA in 5.17 in the losses.
Since the Cubs were all giddy about reaching .500 at 13-13 after the Arizona series, their hitters are 67-for-271 (.247). Ramirez is 5-for-29 (.172). He hasn’t homered since tax day.
At Class AAA Iowa Tuesday, Micah Hoffpauir hit his fourth homer and went 2-for-5 with 2 walks, a double and 5 RBI in a 15-10 win at Las Vegas. Darwin Barney had his 13th multihit game, going 3-for-5. He has hit safely in nine of his last 10. Andrew Cashner pitches today for the I-Cubs at Vegas.
Sam Fuld has a five-game hitting streak after going 3-for-5 for Iowa. He’s 10-for-19 during the streak.
At Class AA Tennessee, Josh Vitters extended his hitting streak to three games, going 2-for-3 with a double and 1 RBI. Right-hander Craig Muschko got a no-decision, but he went 7 innings, giving up 7 hits and 3 runs. Muschko is a guy who doesn’t jump out at you, but sometimes, those guys make it to the big leagues. He’s 24 and a 2007 draft pick out of LaSalle University.
At Class A Daytona, Ryan Flaherty served as DH and extended his hitting streak to four games. He’s 6-for-14 in the streak.
At Peoria (A), the Chiefs were swept in a doubleheader by Clinton. In Game 1, Justin Bour (whom we wrote about the other day) hit his first homer. DH Greg Rohan picked up his team-leading 25th RBI. In the second game, Hak-Ju Lee recorded his ninth multihit game, going 2-for-3.