It's not over yet...
The Cubs still haven't clinched home-field advantage, so they'll actually be playing their full squad for these upcoming 4 games at Shea.
We're just 1 1/2 games back. Three games against Pitt at home to start off should do us well. Tonight's pitcher, Karstens, is just 2-6 and he's facing robot Dave Bush (or, the guy who took over Dave Bush's body and is far out-punting the coverage). Karsten's has lost 6 in a row, gave up 11 hits in 6 innings and seems to be suffering from fatigue. Please, god, let that hold out for one more game.
Tuesday it's Paul Maholm, who for some reason I thought was a Crew killer, despite the fact that he's 0-2 against us.
His scouting report does not bode well for us:
For the ninth time this season, Maholm picked up a no-decision in a start in which he allowed three or fewer runs. In fact in five of those no-decisions, he's given up one or none. Maholm did issue six walks in his last start, though they were a quiet six walks. The seven innings Maholm pitched pushed him over the 200-inning mark, but put him comfortably in position not to exceed the 211-inning maximum set my management. Maholm is still looking for his first win against the Brewers this season. He is 0-2 against them and has allowed 13 runs in 25 2/3 innings.
Not only that, but we have no probable pitcher scheduled. FOR TOMORROW. It's Suppan's turn in the rotation, but one would think that Sveum's smart enough to know that will lead to nothing but bad things. The most likely answer seems to be CC, on three days rest. Of course, the last time we pitched him on 3 days rest, he got his first loss. But if we pitch him tomorrow, we can pitch him again for the season finale against the Cubs.
Another option is Yovani Gallardo and I'm totally torn on that subject. As much as I want to get into the post-season, I don't want it to be at the expense of next year's ace. Not only that, but we have no idea how he'll perform. When every inning matters and we've gone to the bullpen as much as we have this past week, I'd be wary of putting him in there when he could only last a short while.
Wednesday's pitcher is Zach Duke, whom we can only hope stays on the path he's put up so far...
His scouting report:
Duke's last start against the Dodgers was eerily similar to ones that preceded it. The left-hander strung together three goose eggs to begin the game, but was hit hard with a four-run inning. He would eventually be taken after five-plus innings, where he allowed 11 hits and five runs. Duke has only one victory in the second half of the 2008 season. He'll look to close the year on a good note against the Brewers, who he is 3-4 with a 5.08 ERA against in his career.