Hey, Randy Wells, Aren't You Dan Haren?

Arizona's Dan Haren was lifted from Sunday's start at San Diego after the seventh. He held the Padres scoreless for 6 2/3 innings before allowing a solo blast to Kevin Kouzmanoff. In all, Haren was charged with 1 run on 4 hits. He fanned 5, walked 1, and at one point, retired 13 Padre hitters consecutively.

He was deprived of his fifth win of the season, however, when the Arizona bullpen failed to protect a 6-1 lead going into the bottom of the ninth. (The Diamondbacks eventually won, 9-6, in 18 innings.)

In Haren's last start, at Los Angeles, he held the division-leading Dodgers to 1 run on 2 hits over 7 IP, but emerged with a no-decision in a game his team ultimately lost, 6-5.

Haren began the season by losing 3-0, 3-1, and 2-0 games to the Rockies, Dodgers, and Giants, respectively. After those three starts, he had an ERA of 1.89 and a record of 0-3.

After 11 starts, Haren now has a 2.42 ERA. In 78 IP, he has yielded just 57 hits and amassed 78 strikeouts while walking just 10. He is also a .500 pitcher (4-4).

Six games into his career as a Chicago Cub, Randy Wells is now 0-2, 1.86, with his only "non-quality" start coming in his National League debut...when he held the Brewers scoreless, but only for five innings.

Wells' performance Sunday in the 6-3, 14-inning win at Cincinnati was typical of what he has delivered since being summoned from Iowa: 6 2/3 IP, 7 H, 1 BB, 4 K, and just 2 ER. The non-support he received from the Cub offense and the inability of the Cubs bullpen (specifically Carlos Marmol today) to protect a lead on Wells' s behalf were also, unfortunately, typical.

The good news is that Aaron Heilman, Kevin Gregg, Jose Ascanio, David Patton, and Angel Guzman were able to keep the Reds off the scoreboard, while the Cub batsmen were finally able to recapture the lead in the 14th inning, a mere 11 innings after they had last tallied.

I'm sure it wouldn't make Randy Wells feel any better to know that he has company the likes of Dan Haren or that he is becoming a poster boy for the injustice of evaluating starting pitchers by their win-loss totals. But at least he can know that he has done a bang-up job for the Cubs and that if he continues to pitch so effectively, the wins will eventually begin to follow.

Won't they?

 

Comments

The folks here, and Lou, are all smart enough to know that W-L doesn't mean much for pitchers. I think Wells has pitched his way into the rotation for the rest of the year. I like Marshall, but I think I would rather keep him in the 'pen, and keep Wells in there.

Speaking of former catchers now pitchers, anyone notice that Blake Parker is 6 for 6 in save situations at Iowa, and 0.82 ERA with over a K per inning? And this in only his 3rd year of pitching.

I agree, and I wasn't suggesting that his spot could be in jeopardy because of his W-L record. I was just pointing to the fact that we currently have on the Cubs a living, breathing example of the shortcomings of the W-L yardstick in this guy who has pitched well enough to already have four or five wins under his belt.

You can read through the TCR archives, but there's more to winning percentage than run support and ERA. Alternatively, you can just look at who leads the majors in wins in 2009.

I should have said "...the injustice of evaluating starting pitchers solely by their win-loss totals..."

http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/chi-mon-tri...

something about zell giving up control to the lenders, although it would be his call

Rob,

Article does say, "But Zell's team has indicated that it wants to work toward a consensual plan with the company's creditors," so they (the creditors) will most likely have a voice in determining Zell's role.

What a mess.

I'll say one thing about Zell, for all the hype about how smart of a businessman he is, he wasn't too smart buying a group of newspapers just as they are all going down the toilet.

I mentioned this during Sunday's Parachat that Randy Wells' tough luck reminded me of Juan Cruz' troubles as a Cub. In 2002 Cruz had a tough start to the season despite pitching very well. He went 0-7 in his first 8 starts, although his ERA was 2.81 after 6 starts. Even after getting roughed up his two next starts, falling to 0-7, his era was 3.86. That's when Don Baylor started mentioning he might need to move Cruz to the bullpen, and did so after his next start despite Cruz getting the win and going to 1-7. Cruz was moved out of the rotation to make way for Mark Prior's debut. A few weeks later Cruz was being considered to move back into the rotation to replace a struggling and injured Jason Bere.

Cruz' 2002 game log at Baseball Reference:

http://www.baseball-reference.com/players/gl.cgi?n...

I found this tidbit from a 2002 CBS Sports fantasy blurb:

"Cruz gave up four runs and eight hits in 3 2/3 innings Tuesday as his record dropped to 0-7. He is winless in 10 starts since beating Pittsburgh last Sept. 26. However, his record is deceptive. His 3.86 ERA is hardly a cause for alarm. Cruz's problems can also be attributed to poor run support. The Cubs are only averaging two runs in his eight starts."

http://fantasynews.cbssports.com/fantasybaseball/p...

Replace Cruz with Wells in that story and nobody would know the difference, but Wells has been even more impressive. It's a hard knock life. I always liked Cruz, but he has always had the same control issues that plague Marmol so often. When either guy is on they are almost hittable.

"I'll say one thing about Zell, for all the hype about how smart of a businessman he is, he wasn't too smart buying a group of newspapers just as they are all going down the toilet."

Zell didn't buy Tribco for their papers - he bought them primarily for their real estate assets, as well as the TV/Radio stations. He never gave a crap about the papers, but was gambling on buying severely depreciated commercial real estate assets in prime locations on the cheap, in hopes of an eventual rebound. It's how he made his bones in the first place, his MO was coined as a "vulture investor."

Our intrepid manager just pitched Guzman and Marmol every game for a week straight, didn't he?

Wow - the Cubs Bullpen Usage Chart for Sunday certainly is packed with "X's"!

IS it the first time in the year all boxes have been checked for one day?

What a pathetic offense.

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  • How about Kyle Farnsworth? I know he was consistently upper 90s.

    videographer 1 hour 45 min ago view
  • If he puts up Soriano numbers I will be ecstatic

    jacos 3 hours 33 min ago view
  • I think Javy is learning--but he's learning to make contact, not learning to lay off pitches out of the zone. A quick glance at his plate discipline numbers on Fangraphs shows that his contact rate is up, especially his contact rate out of the zone, but his swing rate is up too, especially his swing rate out of the zone.

    Charlie 4 hours 7 min ago view
  • I definitely saw ballpark radar guns go up to 102 on Kerry Wood back when he was still a starter, but who knows how accurate they were.

    Charlie 4 hours 21 min ago view
  • They've mentioned Henry Rodriguez (2013), Chris Carpenter, and Andrew Cashner as Cubs who have gone 100+. They said Rodriguez was tops at 100.8. Who knows before 2008?

    QuietMan 5 hours 45 min ago view
  • Regarding Heyward--

    He'll play regardless of what he does, just like Soriano played for seven years before they finally ditched him.

    What can they do? All I can think of is they can keep hiring and firing hitting coaches until they find one who can get him to stop hitting balls with the handle of the bat.

    (All those broken bats added to his paycheck is just a bit much.)

    VirginiaPhil 5 hours 45 min ago view
  • Lester will probably be all right.

    I think Arrieta might have added too much muscle preparing for that butt-naked ESPN photo shoot. Pitchers are supposed to be loose, not muscled up.

    Seriously.

    VirginiaPhil 5 hours 52 min ago view
  • I have basically written off Heyward for this year -- if you are working on major swing changes in late July, you are going to struggle. Hopefully, he can be more productive at the plate next year. It will be interesting to see what they do with him if the Cardinals keep winning and close the gap. Heyward is dead last in the NL in slugging and in the bottom 5 in OPS -- yet still has a positive WAR. Hunh.

    billybucks 5 hours 55 min ago view
  • Has anybody in a Cub uniform ever thrown a ball 103 before?

    VirginiaPhil 5 hours 59 min ago view
  • He certainly looks better, no doubt, and is a different player than what we saw when he first came up. Full credit to him for changing his approach and saving his career.

    But he has zero walks in 35AB since the break, and 10 in 251 AB all year. He does seem to be able to hit some pitches out of the zone, but, a guy with his pop should be drawing more walks. However, it's easy to forget he is still only 23, and probably trying to make an impact to prove he should be an everyday player.

    billybucks 6 hours 8 min ago view
  • The usual suspects, Molina and Wong. Gyorko drew a walk with two outs, none on. I recall us (particularly Szczur and Bryant) swinging at everything Familia threw.

    VirginiaPhil 6 hours 10 min ago view
  • Yup. Thanks Q

    The E-Man 6 hours 15 min ago view
  • QuietMan 6 hours 23 min ago view
  • I for one hope that Sosa comes back soon.

    Rob Richardson 6 hours 43 min ago view
  • O/B interesting you should mention that. Google ESPN Science Aroldis Chapman and you'll be treated to how his mechanics and delivery are possibly historic. It's the 120% of his body stretch plus the torque. They compare him to the Unit and NRyan.

    The E-Man 7 hours 21 min ago view
  • Amazing how much lower the production gets when Bryant runs into a mini-cold streak. He doesn't stay cold for long. If just one of Zobrist or, gulp, Heyward, gets hot, they oughta have one more really nice winning streak in them. Having a closer that you have absolute confidence in can't hurt.

    Old and Blue 8 hours 5 min ago view