Series Preview: St. Louis Cardinals vs. Chicago Cubs
But before we get to the matchups, I will say this:
- Damn Pirates. I never did trust Nate McClouth.
- This is the most important series of the year. If the Cubs are swept by the Cardinals, they'll be four games out in the standings. No team has ever come back from a four game deficit with less than nine months left to play in the season**.
- And how about those Cardinals? Who knew you could fatten your record by playing the Astros and Pirates at home. Oh wait.
- Carpenter is headed to the DL. I did not see that coming. HOLY CRAP! WHAT'S THAT THING RISING OUT OF THE EAST?!? Oh wait, it's just the sun. When did that thing start rising in the east?
* in actuality, I don't even have a sister. And in actuality, it sounds HOT
** May not actually be true
Thursday April 16th
Adam Wainwright vs. Sean Marshall
I'll tell ya, that Adam Wainwright has always given the Cubs the business. I'm not sure what it is, but I think it's the Braden Looper/Todd Wellemeyer effect. We just can't handle the converted relievers (much like Koyie Hill can't digest the converted rice). Wainwright's been gold this year, so I expect that the Cubs will have their work cut out for them.
Sean Marshall is...well, he's well rested. Other than a couple of very brief appearances, he's been spending most of the season watching reruns of Friends (that Joey!) while off days conspired to keep him off the hill. I see good things in the future for Marshall and he had an exceptional spring, but I certainly worry about rust (you know, rust never sleeps. That FREAKS ME OUT). There's a very good chance that Marshall will be wild and ends up out early. This will be a tough win for the Cubs.
Friday April 17th
Kyle Lohse vs. Carlos Zambrano
Lohse is another pitcher off to a quick start but, unlike Wainwright, hasn't had the recent success to back it up. Lohse, in his career, has been decent but unspectacular, toiling in relative obscurity for the Twins and Reds. In fact, last year was his first good season in, well, in ever. Dave Duncan effect?
Carlos is anything but obscure. Carlos is off to a pretty solid start, with a great first outing and a decent second, but I'm sure he's thrilled to be back at Wrigley. Besides, Carlos is back with his good buddy Geo. Good things are going to happen. Good chance for the Cubbies.
Saturday, April 18th
Todd Wellemeyer vs. Ryan Dempster
Hey look, Todd Wellemeyer! I was just talking about him! Wellemeyer was pretty good last year and I'm happy for him (being a former Cub and all), but he's off to a bit slower start this year. It's posible he's realized that he's Todd Wellemeyer. It's also possible that he just needs to face the Cubs. Someone just told me three paragraphs ago that the Cubs have issues with converted relievers. And rice.
Dempster! That crazy Canadian! He's...well, he's almost off to the exact same start as Todd Wellemeyer. How's that make you feel Ryan? Proud? I hope you're proud of ourself. Maybe this game, you can try throwing strikes.
Someone sound the even matchup alarm! We've got a barn burner!
Sunday, April 19th
Matthew Lesko vs. Ted Lilly
Want to get your moneyback from the government? The crazies at the post office yesterday certainly wanted me to. Well, just Ask Lesko!
I'd write something about Lilly, but he's currently enjoying his dinner and I have to help Koyie Hill find his fingers. I know they're around here somewhere...
In conclusion, ESPN disagrees with each and every one of these predicted matchups. However, our graphic is better, so screw ESPN.
Note from Kurt
I was up until effin' 1AM working on these graphics! Damn ESPN for not updating their supposed schedule until this morning! The issue was that, until last night, they still had Carpenter listed as the Sunday starter -- hence the ??? graphic and the Lesko joke.
Sidebar - I didn't know Lesko's name, so I googled something like "crazy question mark guy" and his wikipedia entry was the first hit. Seriously. End sidebar.
Anyway, I'm probably not going to go back and re-do the graphic. Screw ESPN. If they wait until the last minute to update their projections, then everybody has to pay the price of having inaccurate information!
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