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Cubs Embarrassed by Phillies, Fans.

By Garrett Monaghan

The Cubs got a double dose of humiliation Wednesday, first at the hands of the Phillies, then by their own fans. Philadelphia's powerful lineup drove Jeff Samardzija back to Iowa en-route to a 12-5 spanking of the Cubbies; who were unable to win despite the "help" of a fan who tossed a cup of beer into Shane Victorino's face during the middle of a play.

The Cubs and Victorino are pursuing charges against the fan, who will probably get a lifetime ban from Wrigley, at the very least. Personally, I'd just sentence him to ten minutes behind locked doors with Victorino, Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, and Jayson Werth. Something tells me he'd learn a bit faster. All kidding aside, this is hopefully just an isolated incident and not the start of a trend. The last thing the Cubs need right now is for fans at Wrigley to start behaving like their cousins on the South Side of town. At least the Cubs don't have another series in Philly this year. We might see the justifiably maligned Philadelphia crowd pelting the visitors' dugout with Molotov cocktails instead of cold beverages.

Fan problems aside, it was still a lousy night for the Cubs. Jeff Samardzija demonstrated all too conclusively that he's still very much a thrower rather than a pitcher. He's got a terrific fastball and great repertoire, but his overall command is extremely spotty. Hopefully he'll finally realize that major league hitters (with the possible exceptions of Alfonso Soriano and Geovanny Soto) are perfectly capable of hitting 96mph fastballs when the pitch is left belt-high right over the middle of the plate. Samardzija actually changes speeds pretty well, and both his curveball and splitter could be highly effective pitches if he can learn to get ahead in the count with his heat. Samardzija faced 18 hitters last night, and only managed to throw 7 first pitch strikes. Against a lineup as potent as Philadelphia's, you just can't make those kinds of mistakes.

The Cubs called up Justin Berg to replace Samardzija on the roster. Berg didn't make an appearance in his last call-up, and he probably won't make one this time either. With Zambrano and Lilly both due back relatively soon, the Cubs don't really have a need for Berg.

With the Cubs in a tailspin and the Cardinals starting to pull away in earnest, it's getting harder and harder to get excited about September and October. With the injuries to Ramirez and Lilly likely to linger for the rest of the season, the outlook isn't good for fans on the North Side.

1 comment:

  1. A week ago the Cubs were looking ahead to an important test against two playoff caliber teams. We now know that they have miserably failed that test. Management on and off the field hasn't done much. We still have a starting line-up with the most of the best paid sub-250 hitter in the game. Bench them and put them on the waiver wire. Somebody beside Bob Brenly needs to get upset here.

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