Goatriders of the Apocalypse

NLDS Game One Blogcast

 

5:31PM Central Time - Welcome to the first entry of tonight's blogcast!  They just started the feed of the broadcast, consisting of Tony Gwynn, Ron Darling, and whichever schmuck that other guy is.  It took That Other Guy literally less than 10 seconds to remind us that the Cubs haven't won a World Series in 100 years.  I'll try to keep a tally of how often they bring it up tonight.  The next update will likely be after the top half of the 1st inning.

By the way - is it just me, or is Ryan Dempster living up to his Canadian heritage and growing a playoffs beard?

5:36PM Central - I lied.  "The Cubs won 5 of 7 games against the Dodgers and swept them in Chicago, but that was before Ramirez joined LA.  The Dodgers have a totally different lineup with Ramirez in there."  Uh, no brainiac.  The Dodgers have the same lineup, but with Manny Ramirez.  It's not totally different.

5:44PM Central - Dempster strikes out Furcal, walks Martin on a close pitch that could have been a third strike, and then induces the dangerous Manny Ramirez to ground into an inning-ending double play.  Goat Friend and KXNO broadcaster Jon Miller has noted all year long that Dempster is comfortable giving up the occasional walk due in part to his confidence in his stuff.

5:53PM Central - No thrills for the Cubs in this first inning.  So much for my dream of Chicago busting it wide open right away.  When C. saw Joe Torre, she said "I think that guy's in the mafia!"  She said this even before she knew that he used to manage the Yankees for more than a decade.

5:57PM Central - Annoying Guy notes that the Cubs and Dodgers have played each other 2,024 times and are tied in the standings ... as if it matters in this series.

Dempster allows a leadoff walk.  Stomach, a ball of nerves.

6:04PM Central - After allowing a leadoff walk, Dempster forces three pop flies to get out of the inning, no fuss no muss.  Is it just me, or are Cub fans quiet and tentative tonight?  I think that once the Cubs get their first lead of the series, Wrigley will get noisy.

6:10PM Central - DeRo is my hero!  I've been saying all along that the Cubs would have good odds of winning if DeRosa could continue to produce.  There are obviously still games to be played, but that's a great start.

Cubs 2, Dodgers 0.

Oh, and Lowe is now complaining about the umpire's strike zone.  Ahhh yes.  This is good.

6:14PM Central - With the 2nd inning over, the Cubs now have a 2 run lead.  After Dempster got on, I thought for a second that Soriano was going to bury Lowe.  I was sadly wrong.

End of 2nd inning, Cubs 2, Dodgers 0.

6:20PM Central - Bad tidings.  My "right way" method of play tells me that walking the pitcher is a big no-no.

6:22PM Central - After walking Lowe, and building an 0-2 count to Furcal, Dempster lost him on 4 balls.  Dempster needs a double play here, or risk facing Manny with... uh, many runners on.  Larry comes out to give him words of encouragement, mostly consisting of "WTF?!"

6:26PM  Central - Deep fly ball for out #2.  With 2 outs and Manny up, even with Dempster's control issues, I throw Manny nothing he can hit.  Never let their best hitter beat you.

6:31PM Central - Manny gets an infield hit to load the bases for Ethier.  With a 1-1 count, he hits a slow, scary foul ball that's mere feet away from equalizing the game.  Dempster with a full count, 31 pitches thrown already.  I have to think he's going to be good for 110-115, but he might be done after 5 the way he's going.  And a strike out!  Phew!  Poor Cub fans, this has got to be killing people!

If that just happened to the Cubs, my argument would be that they were now destined to lose.  Wasting a bases loaded opportunity with a pitcher who's struggling to throw strikes rarely results in wins.  Because the Cubs escaped the situation, I'm taking the "this is a scary game" approach and am worried that Dempster is a few bad pitches away from getting rocked.

End of the Top of the 3rd - Cubs 2, Dodgers 0

6:39PM Central - After Derrek Lee got on with only one out, his bad luck with the double play continues as Aramis grounds into one to end the inning.  I missed Fukudome's first out of the inning, as I went upstairs to take some calcium as I am battling leg and shoulder cramps tonight, oddly enough.

End of the 3rd - Cubs 2, Dodgers 0; heart attack victims so far: 12

After a Soriano Hop gets the first out, the second comes with ease before Dempster surrenders a bloop hit.  Still, this is a less stressful inning, as it ends with a harmless line-out.

End of the Top of the 4th - Cubs 2, Dodgers 0 - time to get some runs!

Geo Soto started the inning with a sharply hit lineout.  He's going to start getting hits soon enough.  Lowe then proceeds to strike out Edmonds, resulting in a DeRosa single without runners on. Apparently, Lowe is concerned that the guy with a bum leg will run on him, based on the throws to first.  No matter, Theriot singles as well, giving Dempster a rare opportunity to put the game out of reach with a 3 run homer.  C. says "bunting is stupid.  It should be disbanded."  I say, "It's not an organization, they can't disband it."  Alas, Dempster strikes out.

End of the 4th - Cubs 2, Dodgers 0

7:02PM Central - Dear Ryan Dempster, seriously, this walks crap has got to stop.  I know, it's the playoffs, and you're not used to being there, but c'mon!  You're killing me!  P.S. You can make it up to me by forcing Russell Martin into a double play.

P.P.S. 3-0.  STOP IT!  Bad Dempster!

7:05PM Central - Fine, we'll take a fly out.  C. again: "Doesn't he (Ramirez) realize he looks stupid with all that crap on his hat?"

As we gape at the crazy lady with the Cubs Santa hat (...I've got one), Dempster brings it to a full count.  The know-nothing broadcasters think that Dempster's problems are that he's been too excited, but they might have a point.  I may be wrong about Clownsevelt being just idiot enough to do well.  And he walks Ramirez, but I'm ok with that.  As I've said a million times - never let their best hitter beat you.  Ron Darling with the random line about how, if you work real hard, it just might pay off in October.  ...okaaaaay.

Dempster walks the bases loaded and Larry comes out to have words with the Wild One.  Dempster is now over 100 pitches, it doesn't look like he'll get past the 6th if he even gets out of the 5th.  Not cool.

7:14 - Grand Slam by Loney.  See you later, Ryan Dempster.

Not that I need to say this, but you can't give a team so many chances as Dempster's given the Dodgers.  I really thought he had the right mentality to be a game one starter ... here's to hoping that his next outing is a better one, but he's got to be feeling down about himself.

Marshall comes out to get the Cubs out of the inning.  Anybody else think Dempster should shave the beard?

7:20PM Central - Big breaking strikeout by Marshall to end that brutal 5th inning. Just one thing to keep you guys up, if you're up at all - the Cubs have a pretty good offense, too.

End of the Top of the 5th - Dodgers 4, Cubs 2

After a Soriano strikeout (to the boos of many), Fooky rocketed a ball off the shin of Casey Blake, giving D.Lee a chance to ground into a double play.  Which he promptly does.  Figures.

End of the 5th - Dodgers 4, Cubs 2

7:32 Central - So, here's the good news.  Marshall is an underrated reliever and despite the pecimism and negativity that is running rampant in Cub fans everywhere, this team is fully capable of coming from behind and winning.

Here's the bad news - if the Cubs don't grab a lead shortly, Lou is going to turn to Cotts and Howry and save Marmol and Samardzija for another night.

7:38 Central - After getting an out and then walking Lowe, Marshall buckled down and escaped.  Like I said, underrated.

Marquis - not Cotts nor Howry, but not any better, either - is warming up in the pen.  Lou is obviously saving his horses for another day, so if the Cubs want to optimize their chances of coming back, winning, and cementing their destiny, they're going to need to take it to Lowe this inning.

End fo the Top of the 6th - Dodgers 4, Cubs 2 - Lowe is at 80 pitches.  Considering how dangerous the Dodger pen is, they need to work him.

7:47PM Central - Minor problem.  The Cubs are taking the fastballs and swinging at the breaking pitches.  I'd like to see them be a little more aggressive but they need to stop sitting on the right pitches.

DeRo flies out to end the inning with A-Ram on third.  Time is running out, kids.  Marquis to the ... rescue?

End of the 6th - Dodgers 4, Cubs 2

7:54PM Central - Apparently Manny was really determined to hit a homerun.  Can't really blame Marshall for that one, it wasn't exactly a juicy pitch.

Dodgers 5, Cubs 2

7:58PM Central - Idiot Broadcaster Man says Marshall made a "mistake" to Ramirez, although I would argue that a breaking pitch hit at the batter's ankles doesn't really qualify.  Apart from the low-blow homer, Marshall had a good inning.  The Cubs are now 6 outs away from losing Game 1.

I realize nobody is really thinking of it like this, but let's look at this clinically: if the Cubs were going to lose this game because of the Grand Slam, then a Manny Ramirez homerun is essentially pointless.  Might as well let him hit it when it doesn't matter so much, right?

End of the Top of the 7th - Dodgers 5, Cubs 2, Drunken, Dejected Cub Fans: 455,093

8 Central - Idiot Announcer Man keeps talking about how quiet the ballpark is tonight, contrasting it with last night's celebration when the White Sox clinched.  The thing is, I don't think he's actually clever enough to be implying that the Sox are the better fans - I think he thinks that the city shares the teams equally.  He also just mentioned the 100 year drought again.

Sori, Fukki, and before them Theriot all fail to deliver.  Fontenot is left a sad participant on the basebaths.  Now, before people start jumping down the throat of the Fonz, I will remind you that he hit what would've been a World Series winning homer had the D-Backs not worked some magic a while back against Rivera.  His bat will come around.

End of the 7th - Dodgers 5, Cubs 2.  6 Outs to Go

8:14PM Central - Leadoff triple against the rookie Samardzija.  Idiot Announcer Guy, with the count 2-2, "Samardzija is struggling right now."  ...No, he's trying to keep the ball away from the batter.

Run scores.

Dodgers 6, Cubs 2.  Let them tack it on tonight.  Get 'em tomorrow.

8:19PM Central - Samardoenelokdana forces a double play and a deep, deeeeep pop out to end the inning. This game can't end fast enough for me.

Dodgers 6, Cubs 2.

8:23PM Central - It would be very unCub-like for somebody to hit a granny this inning.  I'm just pointing that out.

8:31PM Central - So, Derrek Lee hit what would've been another double play ball, had somebody been on base.  Aramis smacked a deep out to right field, and Geo Soto continued to go 0-for-the-game, but only because he drew a walk.  Jim Edmonds almost had a heroic moment, but was foiled by a foot of foul territory in left and the incoming wind in center.  If he didn't get so much air on it, that ball probably would have left the park.

I can really see how easy it would be to feel negatively right now.  I mean, cripes, this is exactly what we didn't want to happen.  In a series where momentum is essential, the Cubs have lost theirs tonight.  I'll save the commentary for the post-game, though.

End of the 8th inning, Dodgers 6, Cubs 2.

8:35PM Central - Big homer by Russ Martin.  Hey, I'll use the same mindset I would've used had this been the Cubs ripping apart the Dodgers - it always seems that when a team scores a ton of runs one night, they have trouble scoring anything the next night.  So, I say again: Dodgers, run it up.

Dodgers 7, Cubs 2

8:41PM Central - Marquis in mop-up surrenders a run and then escapes the inning.  Torre is now turning to ... Greg Maddux?

I take it back.  Go get 'em, Cubs.  Club the Mad Dog.

End of the Top of the 9th - Dodgers 7, Cubs 2

After DeRosa grounded out to start the 9th inning, Theriot hustled his way to first in a close call.  Had Greg actually managed to step on first, Theriot would probably have been out. Ward then grounded out to first, and with 2 outs the Fonz stepped up against The Old Man and popped out ... to first.  Seriously, I think Greg was toying with them.

Game over, a post game recap will come.

Dodgers 7, Cubs 2

lol...I was saying the same

lol...I was saying the same thing about the beard when it emerged a little while ago.

I already hate these

I already hate these announcers. They just dont seem to have any intelligence other than the completely obvious.

National Broadcasts

Anytime a national broadcast comes into town, no matter the sport, it's always horrible.

The worst part about it is

The worst part about it is that they wont let the man with the most baseball intelligence get a word in.

You mean Gwynn? He sounds so

You mean Gwynn? He sounds so weird when he talks, though... hmm full count against Fooky.

That was a totally different double play...

...with Manny Ramirez hitting into it!

Random Statistics given ridiculous importance

We've just learned that Joe Torre and Lou Piniella are the only two men to have both 1,700 hits and 1,700 wins as a manager!

Oh. Mr Gwynn was just waiting

Oh. Mr Gwynn was just waiting to talk about the Cubs. Smiling

His accent

Seriously, there's something about Tony's voice/accent that grates on me. I think he's trying to sound flat-out anti-black, as if any hint of an accent would somehow effect his credibility as the greatest hitter of his generation, or something.

Gwynn

He sounds like Fred Armisen trying to do Barack Obama

He just has one of those Mike

He just has one of those Mike Tyson type voices.....annoying. But I would rather hear him than those other tards.

Is it really . . .

"World Championship or Bust" like Co-Idiot said? Lou seems to think it's not. The Cubs won't be decimated by free agency the way the Brewers are. The NL Central mountain can be ascended again.

A repeat of 2007 would a bust.

However, the Cubs do have

However, the Cubs do have some decisions to make. Is Dempster worth re-signing? What about Reed Johnson/Jim Edmonds?

Jim-my Jim-my! Yes resign

Jim-my Jim-my! Yes resign Dempster and Edmonds. Johnson, I like him, but Im not sure.

DEROSA!!!! LOVIN ITI!!!!!

DEROSA!!!! LOVIN ITI!!!!!

Free Agents

Dempster, yes. Edmonds more than Reed, 'cause he's lefthanded.

Dempster with a hit!

Dempster with a hit!

are Cub fans quiet and tentative tonight?

The weather in Chicago is bad. It's chilly and slightly windy. It's a bone chilling-energy sapping kind of day, so I don't think we'll see a traditional Wrigley crowd tonight.

Sounds like the kind of night

Sounds like the kind of night that inspires the invention of hot alcohol. Oh wait, Irish coffee. Never mind.

Soriano with a very good

Soriano with a very good catch. Lookin Good.

GOT HIM!!! Whew. We need a

GOT HIM!!! Whew. We need a 1-2-3 4th for Dempsters sake.

Hey, the game started just

Hey, the game started just over an hour ago. Anybody feel like it's taken longer than an hour to get to this point?

Yeah

Like since mid February.

The real season began today.

DeRosa Homer

The wife and I were out for a quick run at the beginning of the game (took my iPhone with to folow the game) and was running about a half mile from Wrigley when DeRosa hit his homer. I knew he hit one because the cheer from the crowd was unbelievable. We stopped and shouted at the phone to reload to find out what the cheer was all about.

Happy times.

Wow

control a bit of an issue tonight, perhaps?

A bit, but he was better in

A bit, but he was better in the 4th

I am having serious shout box

I am having serious shout box issues.

I blame Kevin. I'll make him

I blame Kevin. I'll make him fix it for the next game, if possible.

This ground out brought to

This ground out brought to you by BlackBerry!

A 1-2-3 inning would be timely, as it would keep Manny from batting with runners on.

1 walk per inning is NOT a

1 walk per inning is NOT a good statistic....

I was going to say you could

I was going to say you could fix it yourself. Then I saw you can't Smiling

I'm pretty sure we can sort it in time - as in I'm off to do it now, but we won't actually know for sure until it gets tested in anger (well, happiness would be nicer).

C. says "bunting is stupid.

I'm laughing. I can see the expression on C's face as she says that.

Tell C. I said hello.

To be fair on the walk front,

To be fair on the walk front, this is a pretty tiny strike zone, and he's had more than a few borderline pitches.

Its actually not tiny. Its

Its actually not tiny. Its just constantly flexing and moving. This umpire doesnt call the best game Ive ever seen. Thats for sure.

the NL bringing out their

the NL bringing out their best...

I think I may puke. Thats

I think I may puke. Thats what I think.

Nobody

rocks the DP like DPLee. NOBODY!!!

Shout box is in real need of

Shout box is in real need of work. I know I said this already. Just frustrating. Anyways, we need some runs now!!!

There's a shoutbox cache -

There's a shoutbox cache - Our web guy lives in England and is resting peacefully (lucky bastard). We'll try to sort it tomorrow, but you do have the comments to work with, too

Its weird. Randomly everyone

Its weird. Randomly everyone elses names show up instead of mine. And when that happens, it wont let me submit anything. And only God knows when my name pops back in there.

Weird indeed.

Weird indeed.

Did anyone else just see Joe

Did anyone else just see Joe Torre fighting off falling asleep??????

I think he always looks like

I think he always looks like that.

No, but his eyes were

No, but his eyes were actually shutting for a good 3 seconds at a time...

Greg Maddux coming in to

Greg Maddux coming in to close it out huh? Hmmmm.......Lunch Time?

I think we're on the same

I think we're on the same page tonight, cjaxson.

Lost the series....

The Cubs lost this series. This is not pessimism. This is realism. Billingsly is a very good pitcher, and Zambrano has been very, very, very, very, shaky. The Cubs go to LA down 0-2. Pitching winning World Series. The Dodgers have better overall pitching than the Cubs. It is as simple as that.

I agree Kurt. But Im sure not

I agree Kurt. But Im sure not on the same page as faustus. Im sure you guys will come up with some info to totally discredit his whole post by tomorrow.

So, you won't be watching any

So, you won't be watching any more of the games, right?

Enjoy the off season ... I'll let you know when mine starts.

who said anything about not watching the end

It is part of being a Cubs fan.You keep on watching. Sometimes the Cubs actually surprise you(well at least this season they have). I would love it if they proved me wrong. Even if they lose this year, there is actually hope. The Cubs made back to back postseasons. The Cubs actually have management who is interested in putting the best team out there. The Cubs need true number three hitter or another power hitter. Don't come to me about Soriano. He has been amazing against lefties, but the for the season he is batting .252 against righties. Guess what? A team is more likely to face a right handed pitcher. I actually I have faith that Hendry make do something in the off season to remedy that. As Chicago sports fan, how many teams have made goofy moves in history. I can say with a confidence that Hendry is a lot more competent than Jerry Angelo. This is merely the beginning of something great.

Depressed

I'm feeling rather depressed at the moment... even if Theriot just got on base.

Everyone at work is gonna

Everyone at work is gonna have a comment for me cause they know I am die hard Cubs. I just know it. And they are gonna get thier first taste of my grumpyness as I am almost always very upity and cheerfull.

Do you see what happens Kurt?

Do you see what happens when you tempt the baseball gods by calling out a fan who knows how the team works? I recanted and now they're down 1-0. A hole only 4 out of 28 teams have been able to climb out of. Do you really think the Cubs will be a team to buck the trend?

Big Z will toe the rubber tomorrow under more stress than he would have been under had he started game 1. I think it was a site-wide consensus that it was a good thing that Z wasn't starting game 1 because of said stress...and the fact he's pretty much sucked for the last two months.

I say to you again: there are

I say to you again: there are no such things as jinxes. Jinxes don't kill teams, tremendous negativity and ridiculous pressure do.

You're a-ok in my book, Smitty, but I have zero room in my heart for people who jump ship. I was worried about Carlos in Game One because he's been inconsistent. I've never, ever worried about how he'd pitch under pressure. I say amp it up - Carlos has that pressure now, and if his body is willing, the Cubs will follow.

I haven't jumped ship

I'll be glued to the TV (and if I'm lucky, in person) cheering them on all the way, I'm just a bit (ok, a lot) superstitious.

Youve gotta have the mindset

Youve gotta have the mindset that you will sink with the ship alongside the captain. Cause when we finally pull through, it will be worth the heartache. I know for a fact, that I will cry sometime within the next few weeks. Whether it be joy or sorrow. I just know that you must always believe and always support. A team without support will always fail.

I'll sink with the ship

I've just always been a superstitious ball player through high-school and college (maybe that's why I didn't get drafted...), and the Cubs were doing pretty well after I stuck a fork in them.

Hell, I once wore cut-off sweat pants and a hole-filled tshirt to a friend's wedding because the Cubs were playing and I thought they were lucky. Thankfully, said friend ultimately forgave me. And the cubs won that day...in 1998 against the Giants...and were promptly swept from the post season by the Braves.

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