Sunday, June 26, 2005


Prior Returns!

Thank god my blog is here to inform as, otherwise, this news would fall under the radar.

Tonights game should be a brilliant one as Prior takes on Garland. This is going to be another tough win, but we won last night, so it can be done.

Okay, so, here's what's going on. Prior has returned to the rotation and so the reformation of the pitching staff has begun. Here's what is happening (at least as far as I can tell).

Wellemeyer has been sent down to make way for Novoa. This makes me sad as he is one of my favorites, but he has truly been terrible recently. I don't really understand what the problem is with Welley, but hopefully he can figure it out and give it another try. Novoa was great yesterday but has only been decent in the majors this year. Who know though, maybe he will be better.

Rusch and Mitre are swinging out to the bullpen in anticipation of Prior and Wood rejoining the rotation. I think this is a fine move as the pen could use some long relief help with Rusch, and Mitre has really struggled recently. But maybe he can induce some ground balls out of the pen.

So now the Cubs will probably send Rich Hill and Borowski down to free up a couple of roster spots and out rotation will be:


which I like better than


The bullpen would then be:


One more note: With Wood and Prior coming back, it is really essential to have someone like Rusch in the bullpen. Wood is starting out on a 90 pitch limit and so he may not make it out of the fourth. That is when someone like Rusch really becomes essential.

So the questions surrounding the Cubs right now:

Will Wood be the same crappy pitcher he was this year before hitting the DL or will he be better now that he's (theoretically) healthy?
Is Prior's elbow really okay?
What is up with Zambrano and does he need to go on the DL for his toe?

Answer me these questions three and this blog you will be allowed to leave.

1) Wood will be better, but not dominant. He'll be an above-average pitcher for the rest of the season and will have one more stint on the DL.

2) Prior's elbow is really okay. It was not a bad break, it's had time to heal, and it was not pitching-motion-induced, so pitching won't really risk damaging it more.
However, his command and endurance will be lacking, and he should not pitch today. He's going to get bombed. Against a slappy team like the White Sox, you need command. And on a hot, hot Chicago steamer of a day, you need endurance.
Bad call to start him today.

3) Zambrano is in big trouble. Pitching on his toe (or walking on his toe with his "girthy" frame) is just asking for continued - and exascerbated - trouble. I think he's effectively done for the season as a #1 dominant starter, unless he goes on the DL, which neither he nor Dusty will allow.

Blue. No, yellow.
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